October 2019

Updates from College Leadership

This month marked the first Community College Student Advocacy Day at the State House in Boston. Community college students from across the Commonwealth heard from top education policy makers before spreading out across the Statehouse to meet with their respective State Senators and Representatives and make the case for why our community colleges need their support. Middlesex sent nearly two dozen students who hustled up and down five floors to meet with the Senators, Representatives and MCC alumni who now work at the State House. Their stories were heard by ten legislators who were all impressed by our students’ presentation. A group of students from Lowell had a chance encounter with Cambodian Prince Sisowath Thomico, Senator Edward Kennedy invited students into the newly-refurbished Senate chambers, and Representatives Golden and Nangle brought students into a live House of Representatives discussion. It was a wonderful day that afforded our students the chance to advocate for themselves and their education.

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Table Of Contents

  • Featured Video
    • Smart Start 2019
  • Featured News Story
    • National Streaming Theatre Series with a Connection to Middlesex Community College
  • Upcoming Events
  • Awards, Presentations & Publications
    • College Advancement
  • Employee News
    • Program for Asian American Student Advancement
  • Community Submissions
    • College Advancement
    • Corporate Education and Training
    • Financial Aid
    • Middlesex Activities Council

Featured Video

Smart Start 2019

Featured News Story

National Streaming Theatre Series with a Connection to Middlesex Community College

MCC_LetsPlay_F19-610x406.jpgIn Arlington, Virginia, high school students are delving into imperialism, the Black Lives Matter movement, feminism, immigration issues, and First Amendment rights, not in their social studies classes, but in their drama program.

“Signature in the Schools” brings Arlington’s Signature Theatre into public schools.

“At the heart of it, it’s a program that has become about giving kids a voice and a way to understand difficult things happening in their world,” said Education Director David Zobell.

This is just one of the youth theater programs across the United States spotlighted in “Let’s Play,” a docuseries on the streaming Stage Network, an online platform dedicated to showcasing the dramatic arts. The show is directed and hosted by Karen Oster, Middlesex Community College’s Chair of Performing Arts. [Read More]

Upcoming Events

Awards, Presentations & Publications

Community Education and Training

On October 10, our fall MILES Keynote speaker was a success! Local Author, Jose Ramirez enlightened the MILES members about his experience coming to the United States as a Cuban refugee. He shared the history surrounding Pedro Pan and what his life was like living without his parents all the way to meeting his lovely wife, Judith. Mr. Ramirez has a series of books that showcases his life story, specifically, “Defining Moments: A Cuban Exile’s Story about Discovery and a Search for a better Future.  He was simply amazing!

SAVE the date, as our spring 2020 MILES keynote session will be on Wednesday, March 18 when we learn a bit more about the Beatles!

Employee News

Program for Asian American Student Advancement

Whitney picture - Linda ThiemThe Program for Asian American Student Advancement (PAASA) welcomes a new UMass Lowell Graduate Fellow Whitney Tang to the team. She will be working in the Asian American Connections Center on the MCC Lowell Campus.

Whitney completed her AA in Liberal Arts and Sciences at MCC and transferred to UML where she received her BS in Public Health – Community Health. She is currently continuing her studies at UML in the MPH – Epidemiology program. As a graduate fellow, Whitney will be coordinating the Multicultural Achievement Peer Program (MAAP). This peer-mentorship program provides Asian American students a unique opportunity to receive guidance from UMass Lowell’s student mentors who will help with their transition from MCC to a four-year school like UML.

Community Submissions

College Advancement

Craft Fair - Teresa Medina

AmazonSmile-Connector10.19 - Teresa Medina

Corporate Education and Training

The Corporate and Community Education & Training staff attended the New England Workforce Network (NEWN) Conference on Friday, October 11, 2019, at Mount Wachusett Community College in Gardner, MA.

Financial Aid

MCC’s three-year cohort default rate is the lowest amongst peer institutions in the state.

“A cohort default rate is the percentage of a school’s borrowers who enter repayment on certain Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program or William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan (Direct Loan) Program loans during a particular federal fiscal year (FY), October 1 to September 30, and default or meet other specified conditions prior to the end of the second following fiscal year.”

– U.S. Department Education – http://www.ed.gov

The U.S. Department of Education released official cohort default rates on September 23, 2019. The national average cohort default rate for two-year public colleges is reported at 15.9%. Middlesex Community College’s default rate is reported at 9.2%, significantly below the national average – an incredible difference in comparison to our peer colleges.

Federal student loan borrowers in most cases are required to begin repaying their student loans six months after leaving school or dropping below full time enrollment. When a borrower does not make a payment for approximately nine months, they will default on their loans.

The recently announced repayment averages for former Middlesex students is a testament to the many conversations Financial Aid staff has with students who accept Federal Loans to fund their college education.

These important conversations regarding repaying borrowed funds can be considered part of the reason default rates are low for our college. In addition, students entering the workforce after attending Middlesex is evidence of the quality of education MCC provides as well as diverse programs offerings and areas of study complimented by the caliber of teaching. administrative staff and student commitment to learning.

Middlesex Activities Council

Middlesex Activities Council (MAC) hosted their inaugural Spirit of Boston Welcome Cruise on Tuesday, September 24 to kick-off our school year. One hundred students and 10 advisors attended this fun, festive, sold-out event.

SOB 2.jpg

During the sunset cruise, students and advisors enjoyed a fantastic meal and packed the dance floor all night! New and returning students danced and connected with each other and fun was had by all.

SOB 7.jpg

A big thank you is in order for the wonderful advisors, Karonika Brown, Kirsten Morrow, Donna Corbin, Virak Uy, Mary Ellen Powers, Susan Lavallee, Mary Rohnstock, Susan Ryan, and Valerie Morse.

MAC has many upcoming events for MCC students throughout the year. Next is Fright Fest at Six Flags New England on Saturday, October 26. Please share this opportunity with your students!

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