Tuesday, February 26, 2013

CNN reports community college grads out-earn bachelor's degree holders

Nearly 30% of Americans with associate's degrees now make more than those with bachelor's degrees, according to Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce. Read the full story.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Scholarship event raises $31,000 for CGCC students

Champagne, Chocolate and all that Jazz attendees
(from left) Kari Cluff, senior project manager,
Salt River Project; Carol Kluff, CGCC alumnus;
Terri Kimble, president and CEO,
Chandler Chamber of Commerce; Laura McClanahan
and Mike McClanahan, market manager, Walmart.
More students will be receiving scholarships to attend Chandler-Gilbert Community College thanks to East Valley community members and businesses. The college held its third annual Chocolate, Champagne and all that Jazz fundraising event in early February, raising more than $31,000 — a  19 percent increase over the previous year.

“It’s exciting to know that we’ll be able extend scholarships to more students who may not have had the opportunity to attend college otherwise,” said Linda Lujan, president of Chandler-Gilbert Community College. “We’re grateful for the ongoing partnership and devotion of businesses, organizations and individuals who work with us in so many ways to help students find pathways to success,”

The event drew more than 200 guests including Arizona State Legislator JD Mesnard, Queen Creek Mayor Gayle Barney, Gilbert Mayor John Lewis, City of Chandler Council members Trinity Donovan and Nora Ellen as well as police chiefs Sherry Kiyler (Chandler) and Frank Milstead (Mesa).

“Education is a strong component in the economic development and overall success of our business environment.  Scholarships are essential to provide opportunities for students, the future business leaders of our community.” said Terri Kimble, president and CEO of the Chandler Chamber of Commerce.

The event featured more than 70 gift baskets ranging from fly fishing, golf, and helicopter rides to sports tickets, interior design services and weekend getaways. The baskets are donated by local businesses and college employees.

“Our faculty and staff really go out of their way to put together baskets for this event,” said Lujan. “When we combine their contributions with those from the community, we have a dazzling display of creative generosity.  Guests get excited about winning a basket, but the true winners are our students.”

Between bids, guests sampled the dishes and desserts of local restaurants including Brio Tuscan Grille, Buffalo Wild Wings, Chompie’s, Crackers & Company Café, The Groves Bar & Grill, Honey Bear’s BBQ, Kona Grill, Lisa’s Rum Cake, Salerno’s Catering and TopIt Cupcakes.

Four scholarship recipients mingled with guests and shared their personal stories and posters featuring thank you notes from additional scholarship recipients are placed throughout the event.

“It’s really impactful to be here and talk to the people who make the scholarships possible,” said Stephen Acosta, aviation maintenance technology student and scholarship recipient. “I hope that I can convey how grateful I am and how the scholarship is more than tuition assistance, but also a vote of confidence.

View a two-minute slideshow featuring some of the evening's attendees.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

CGCC hosts aviation military history event

Chandler-Gilbert Community College welcomes aviation military history expert Herb Zinn to the 17th Annual Greater Southwest Aviation Maintenance Technician Symposium held March 7-8 at the Williams Campus at the Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport.

Zinn will deliver a presentation to symposium attendees at 11:30 a.m. on March 8 titled, "The Strategic Bombing Campaign in Europe:1942-1945" which highlight military aviation history during World War II.

In addition to the presentation, there will be model aircraft on display from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. from the Craig Hewitt Chapter of the International Plastic Modelers' Society, Phoenix Ariz. All types of aircraft including models of the bombers flown during the "Strategic Bombing Campaign in Europe 1942-1945."  Both will take place in the Higley Room in Bridget Hall. A more extensive exhibit of models will be available for viewing in the Williams Campus library until March 13.

Zinn is a member of the Arizona Wing of the Commemorative Air Force, located at Falcon Field, in Mesa and also serves as executive officer. He is involved in strategic planning, education, fundraising and Museum development and is a docent in the Wing's Museum, where he conducts guided tours and makes presentations focused on military history and the role played by aviation in conflicts involving the United States.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Three CGCC students receive All-Arizona Academic Team scholarships

All-Arizona Academic Team scholarship recipients (from left)
Avonlea Hope, Samantha Janko and Wilson Craghead with
CGCC President Linda Lujan.

Three Chandler-Gilbert Community College students were honored along with 22 other Maricopa Community College District students at the 18th Annual All-Arizona Academic Team Recognition Ceremony on February 20.

The ceremony celebrates the outstanding academic achievements and distinguished leadership of students enrolled in Arizona community colleges. Five organizations — Phi Theta Kappa, American Association of Community Colleges, Arizona Board of Regents and USA Today — then help these students reach their educational goals by awarding scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $500 and issuing tuition waivers to any of Arizona’s three universities.

CGCC students Wilson Craghead, Avonlea Hope, and Samantha Janko all received $750 scholarships and plan to transfer to Arizona State University to study biochemistry, bioresearch technology and biomedical engineering respectively.

Students selected to the Academic Team in their state are also eligible to be chosen as a national scholar, which includes a spring feature in USA Today and eligibility for additional scholarships. Learn more information about the awards.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Pole climbers demonstrate skill at Chandler Science Spectacular

A mother and her child watch
CGCC Energy Utility Technology
students demonstrate climbing
and line repair skills during the
2012 Chandler Science Spectacular.

There’s something about the image of a crew soaring to the top of a utility pole that is impossible to ignore. Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) is counting on that fascination with heights and the people who aren’t afraid to reach them as a way to attract a lot of attention during the Chandler Science Spectacular on Saturday, Feb. 16. The 3-Day Festival is a celebration of science and part of a larger effort to increase awareness of Arizona as a tech-savvy, science-oriented state.

The college is planting a utility pole in the grassy campus of the event to demonstrate what students learn in its Electric Utility Technology (EUT) program. Students in the program are taught the best techniques to climb utility poles and repair overhead and underground distribution wires.

Chandler’s event is meant to create a friendly point of entry to science for students and their families with the idea that once people see how integral science is to their everyday lives, they’ll have a better appreciation of how important a science and technology education is to the future. CGCC is using the pole climbing demonstration to attract attention but also to introduce students to a potential career.

“Our Electrical Utility Training is one of a number of programs we have that prepare students for high-skills, high-wage jobs,” said Maria Reyes, dean of Career and Technical Education. “The energy industry is experiencing high demand and we’ve been working closely with our energy business partners to ensure the training students receives is directly applicable to today’s technology.”

Employment opportunities in this field include municipal-, investor- and privately owned power companies; power line contractors; and local utility companies and have an average income ranging from $45,000 to $73,000. The program is offered at CGCC’s Williams Campus, which offers a technical certificate or an Associate of Applied Science degree.

Students become familiar with the use of tools, materials and equipment of the trade and, upon completion of the program, are prepared for employment as well-informed, entry-level line workers. According to program director Mark Weaver, CGCC graduates more than 80 percent of its students, and places more than 60 percent in utility-industry jobs.

“It’s important for Chandler-Gilbert Community College to develop career paths for the growing and emerging industries in our community and to help fill the need for a skilled and educated workforce,” said Reyes. “Many of these careers require a solid foundation of science, technology, engineering and math education, which the festival highlights in an entertaining and engaging way.”

Chandler’s Science Saturday is in downtown Chandler from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. It is the final event in Chandler’s 3-Day Science Spectacular, showcasing science and technology in the city. Other events include a Tech Crawl, where visitors can tour Intel, Air Products, and the Innovations Incubator, and A Night of Art & Science, a celebration of the science that goes into artistic endeavors.

The City of Chandler is hosting this festival in conjunction with the Arizona SciTech Festival, a statewide effort to increase Arizona’s reputation in the science and technology industry. For a complete list of events, visit www.chandleraz.gov/science or www.azscitechfest.com.

For information about CGCC’s Electrical Utility Technology program call 480-988-8255 or visit cgc.edu.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Mesa Educates U campaign launches

Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Mesa Community College partnered to as a sponsor of a new campaign coordinated by the City of Mesa called “Mesa Educates U.”

The cooperative marketing program is designed to raise the profile of Mesa as a premier destination for higher education and highlights the two community colleges as well as A.T. Still University, Albright College, Benedictine University, Upper Iowa University, Westminster College, and Wilkes University.

“Each of these institutions brings unique program offerings to the table and this initiative makes it easy for prospective students to discover all that Mesa has to offer,” said Mesa City Manager Chris Brady.

The campaign features a 20+ page website at MesaEducatesU.org, a 20+ page app, and a facebook page. In addition to higher education information, the Mesa Educates U campaign also shares things to do in Mesa, how to choose the right school, and even how to pay for college with details on the Mesa Educates U scholarship program.

The campaign is anchored by Discover U Weekend scheduled for March 8-9. Discover U Weekend will give prospective students a chance to meet with school representatives at signature events in Mesa — at Mesa’s 2nd Friday Night Out monthly block party on March 8 and during the Chicago Cubs spring training game at Hohokam Stadium on March 9 (sign up to win tickets to the Cubs spring training game on MesaEducatesU.org.)