April is Community College month.
At Clinton Community College we take time this month to reflect on our many activities and programs, connections to the community and especially our students. I am fortunate to work with a great group of students who excel in the classroom.
Any student who has a 3.5 grade point average and has taken 12 credits of college courses is eligible for our Alpha Theta Beta chapter of Phi Theta Kappa.
Phi Theta Kappa, founded in 1918, is the official community college honor society. As a PTK member, students can compete for scholarships and develop leadership skills.
This past semester, we had almost 170 students eligible for PTK. On March 19, we celebrated by hosting an induction ceremony.
PTK also strives to be of service to others. Our chapter has sent over 2,000 Christmas cards to US troops overseas, and to soldiers recovering at Walter Reed Hospital.
We have volunteered with the Clinton schools, the Children’s Cancer Connection camp in Boone and currently are working on a project with the Iowa Regional PTK to build a school in Togo, West Africa. All proceeds from our Pizza Ranch fundraiser on April 29 will go to the Togo project.
PTK has an ongoing project associated with a national movement to encourage all students to commit to complete their two-year degree.
PTK students are also involved in regional and international PTK conferences.
Gina Bielski, Shirley Turnis and I are honored to be the advisors for this great group of active, scholarly students.
Each academic year, two students are nominated by the faculty to serve as our college’s honor students in the USA Today/All Iowa Scholars program.
This year Crystle Liebhart and Cory Reuter were nominated and were among just 51 students in the state to receive such recognition. They were honored at a statewide banquet on March 6 in Des Moines.
Clinton Community College’s Student Success Center is the place to be. Students come to the center to study individually or in a study group, network, and complete projects.
We hire students who have been successful in the classroom and who have been nominated by faculty members to be peer tutors. Peer tutors work with students to assist with assignments, work on difficult concepts and sometimes just be a study partner.
This has been a highly successful program over the years, and we count on the best students to become peer tutors.
This semester alone we have 10 peer tutors who work from early in the morning until evening assisting CCC students. Many students rely on the tutor support they receive as a CCC student.
Along with the great students I see in my classes daily, I have the pleasure to work with the PTK members and peer tutors as well. All our students bring their unique backgrounds and circumstances to make CCC a great place to start higher education.
Next time you are with a group of people, ask who is or was a part of Clinton Community College. You might be surprised at how many have a CCC connection.
I won’t be surprised, as I know CCC and its students are a strong connection to our community.
Jane Marlowe is an instructor and PTK advisor.