Community colleges make a difference for all

Clinton Community College is an important part of our community life and an organization of which we can all be proud.

In recent years community colleges have been receiving increased national attention for the vital role they play in the economic health of their communities. Working with the community the college helps entice new businesses to the area.  The college provides training for new jobs, preparation for students seeking to transfer to four-year colleges and second chances for students seeking high school diplomas.

A large number of graduates from our community college have gone on to earn four-year degrees and many have gone on to complete graduate degrees at major universities.

The community college promotes the cultural life of the community through special programs in literature, the sciences, the arts and an extensive continuing education program.  Participation of well-educated staff members in community organizations is a significant asset.

There is a constantly accelerating change in the demands of the labor market.  

Jobs that are becoming more automated require greater knowledge of computer systems.  

Jobs that become less repetitive require more judgment and decision-making on the part of employees and thus demand a greater educational background.  The community college serves the specific needs of the community in which it’s located.

A study of people throughout history who have made important contributions to our civilization with inventions, business organizations, in the arts and political leadership shows that talent is independent of family wealth and background.  We must not waste talent.  

Everyone must be educated to the fullest extent of his or her ability and desire to achieve.  Educational opportunities must not be denied for economic reasons.

As tuitions rise at four-year colleges the community college becomes an affordable alternative for the first two years of college.

The better the personal education, the greater the asset that person becomes to the community.

Richard Kissack,            


Medical executive: CCC helped me fulfill my dream

This letter is written as a tribute to Clinton Community College for Community College Month –  April 2012.

I would like to share a very personal dream with you, the reader.  Since I was young, I’ve had a dream.  My dream was to become a nurse; and I carried that dream from childhood to my adult world.  My dream was “interrupted” by marriage, the birth of our three children, as well as farm life obligations.  During all those years the dream continued to be alive and well, although, not fulfilled.

Then, I discovered Eastern Iowa Community College  –  Clinton Campus and learned of an opportunity to enter their nursing program, while still juggling home responsibilities.  We lived on a farm near Sabula, so attending the college was an easy travel distance.  The tuition was manageable.  All signs were positive that my dream would be realized.  I’d been out of school for 20 years, when I took the first class.  Ultimately, I received an Associate Degree in Nursing in 1977, which was a very proud moment.

Obtaining my ADN opened many career doors.  Briefly, I worked as a staff nurse, a critical care supervisor, director of nursing and Vice President of Patient Care at Clinton’s local hospital (Mercy Medical Center).  Along the way, I earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Master in Nursing degree. None of these wonderful opportunities would have been available to me if not for the Clinton Community College, which was the “wind beneath my wings.”

Today, it appears to me that Clinton Community is a significant component of the Clinton area infrastructure. The fact that the Higher Learning Association of the Midwest region accredits them, qualifies the college to compete academically with other like institutions.  Additionally, other colleges readily accept credits earned at the college.

I am forever indebted to the faculty and the availability of programs at Clinton Community College for playing a significant part in the fulfillment of my personal dream.

Further, I’d challenge any of the readers of this letter to understand that if you have a dream, it, too, can be fulfilled through the halls of the community college. A life-transforming experience awaits you.

Ruthann Papke,


Paul B. Sharer Board President,

Clinton Community College

This Week's Circulars