Volume 1, Issue 1, Spring 2016      


Our Mission    
 To encourage and empower Maine students who need additional support as they transition from high school to college and to connect them to the academic, personal, and financial resources they need for success in and beyond community college.
Jim Gerritsen, Caleb, and the ancient tractor.
Seeds of Growth

Former Early College for ME scholarship winner Caleb Gerritsen (Central Aroostook High School, 2012) graduated from Northern Maine Community College in 2014 with an associate degree in diesel hydraulics. He is the second of four children of Jim and Megan Gerritsen, owners of Wood Prairie Farm, organic seeds, in Bridgewater. 
    Now, Caleb is taking the lead in running the farm. Through crowdfunding the family raised enough to expand their mail-order capacity and hope to raise enough more for a new barn and repairs to their 45-year-old tractor. With his degree in diesel hydraulics, Caleb is on that project!
    On the way to the day's job.
Full of Energy
and Ready to Go
Casey Nadeau (Skowhegan Area High School, 2012) graduated from Kennebec Valley Community College in 2014 with an associate degree in energy services and technology. He earned Honors his last semester, and Titan Mechanical Inc. hired him right out of college for its Newport office. Titan, based in Portland, provides commercial-industrial HVAC and plumbing services throughout the northeast. Nadeau's work includes service, new installations, and preventive maintenance. He was in the first class of KVCC's new energy services program. He is happy at Titan and appreciates all he learned at KVCC. He also appreciates having been an Early College for ME participant. His Regional Director "was a tremendous help," he says, "especially for scheduling my classes, and the scholarship helped financially"--all the way to his degree and Titan Mechanical.
Westward Ho--and Back!

Michelle Blake (Richmond High School, 2008) graduated from Eastern Maine Community College
with an associate degree in early childhood education. She transferred to the University of Maine, earned a bachelor's degree in child development and family relations in 2012, then went to Utah. In 2015, in her second year as director of a private school for infants through two-year-olds, she earned a master's degree online from Southern New Hampshire University in special education and curriculum design and instruction. Currently, she's between jobs, engaged to be married, and waiting to be transferred with her fiancÚ, though as yet, they don't know where. They are hoping to return east. Still, it could be Germany. He works for Here, a mapping enterprise co-owned by the German automotive companies, Audi, BMW, and Daimler.
    Looking back, Blake says, "Participating in ECforME helped me a great deal in college! I was new to the college scene and felt overwhelmed. The meetings with my Regional Director were extremely helpful, easing my anxiety. Ask for help if you need it!" she says. "You're not the only one who has asked the questions. Use the resources you are given!"
We wish them continued success!
Do you know a student who could benefit from Early College for ME?
If so, speak to your school Guidance Counselor.

Maine Community College System | Early College for ME

Maine Community College System
323 State Street | Augusta, ME 04330