Clinton Community College eyes more student involvement

John Rohlf/Clinton HeraldJacob Houzenga plays Connect Four in the Clinton Community College auditorium as Kara McBride looks on. 

CLINTON — Since arriving at Clinton Community College in August, Student Engagement Coordinator Joe Cannella has been working to get students more involved in campus activities. 

About a year ago, Clinton Community College made the decision to end their athletic programs. CCC President Karen Vickers said the decision was difficult but said the decision was made to take the funds and other resources from the athletic programs and use them to put together a student activities program. 

In August, Cannella was hired in that position and he has been working with students to get them more involved in campus activities. 

One of the main issues with getting students involved is their busy schedules, Cannella said. He said students were often busy during planned activities or clubs. He said that class and work schedules often conflicted with the time of the activities. 

As a result, CCC has eliminated class time from 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday to give students a chance to go to activities on campus. 

“While that doesn’t sound like a large amount of time, it’s only 45 minutes for each time to meet, but it gives an opportunity for students to make that connection, that first connection,” Cannella said. “Maybe it’s they attend their first meeting with the nursing program. Maybe they go to their first student government meeting. But it plants that seed that’s able to grow.” 

Cannella is continuing to promote old activities and traditions while also introducing some new activities as well. One of the events the school has put on is a club fair. This event gives students an opportunity to learn more about what clubs are available on campus. They also have put on events such as student-run bingo and a trivia lunch. 

The college also has purchased a chess board for students to use, which Cannella says has been popular among the students. 

“You can usually see students sitting at it and playing a game. It gets very competitive,” Cannella said. “They’ve gone so far as to bring more than one chess board in so they can have more than one game going at a time.”

Cannella also is trying to promote activities to get students more active. They have recently gotten a ping-pong table and have showcased soccer and frisbee events on campus. Cannella said he would eventually like to have intramural activities available to the students. 

In addition, a new activity that allows students to eat lunch with a professor or advisor has been introduced. They can talk about classes or career advice or they can talk about things outside of the classroom. 

Cannella thinks this has allowed students to interact with their professors. 

Herald Staff Writer John Rohlf can be reached at


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