This is CCA: Students are people, not numbers

chairIt had been two years since I had taken a seat in a classroom. Before CCA, my college experience took place at a large four-year institution where I felt more like a number than a person. The classrooms were lecture halls with sometimes several hundred students. I never fell in love with the college experience like so many of my high school friends – so I was nervous to return and try again.

I made my way down the hallway of CCA and found my classroom with Professor Scott Reichel. The class was English – which was always my favorite subject to study. I found a seat near the front and waited for Scott and the other students to begin to arrive. I was shocked that my class only had eight students, including myself. Continue reading »

Posted in Student

Five reasons to use summer semester

Summer Reading For most of my life I lived in extremely cold and snowy locations, so the lure of summer was powerful. My family was large and had limited resources so we didn’t travel or vacation – we just learned to make the best out of whatever season we happened to be in (which was usually winter).  Summer meant warmth and sunshine and lazy days off from school, and we looked forward to it with a vengeance.  Even in higher education we kicked back in the summer. At both 2-year and 4-year institutions the summer session was shorter with limited course offerings and a kind of kick-back mentality. The community colleges where I worked in the Chicago area catered to four-year students who were home working for the summer and wanted to take a course or two at their local community colleges.

But historically we haven’t really pushed our continuing students to take advantage of summer, and I think that needs to change. We work year-round, we raise our families year-round and it’s time to go to college year-round.  Here’s why: Continue reading »

Posted in Summer

CCA’s Theatre Production: Mok’ing-bûrd to open minds and hearts

mok'ing-burd-imageUnderstanding the human experience is the key to both acceptance and harmony. CCA’s Theatre Director, Stacey D’Angelo, tackles the misconceptions of those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) through theatrical interpretation in the Spring 2015 production:
“Mok’ing-bûrd.”

ASD is represented as a spectrum because it is quite different in each person, with varying levels of severity. It is known to affect communication, socialization and sensory processing, and is often misunderstood by people not on the autism spectrum. Many people with ASD have an average or above average intellect, but may struggle with how they interpret social cues, experience a sensitivity to sounds, lights or even smells, and sometimes calm themselves with repetitive behaviors. Misunderstanding can often manifest itself in the form of judgment, fear or ostracizing individuals that don’t fit in.  But the antithesis to misunderstanding is education and empathy, which are both key lessons in this semester’s production. Continue reading »

Posted in Theatre

Turn your associate degree into a bachelor’s

Transfer-FairSavvy students who like to save money while still receiving the best education possible know that the associate degree has become one of the more valuable assets that a person can have in their toolbox. Students are opting to first start with a two-year degree and then transfer to a four-year institution to earn their bachelor’s degree. Not only is this one of the most cost effective ways to gain a quality education, but it also allows a student to change their mind about their focus without losing too much time.

Maybe it’s the saved money, or the convenience or even the flexibility of scheduling that has driven people to go to community colleges, but one thing is for sure: the transfer options and assistance are what ensures success after graduation.

Transfer simplified

One of CCA’s top priorities is ensuring that the transfer process is as easy and seamless as possible. With guidance, tools and resources, CCA students have more potential to succeed than ever. The designated degree program ensures that all classes and credits will transfer to one of the four-year institutions that the college partners with. This means that when you transfer to a university, all of your classes will come with you, making completing a bachelor’s degree more affordable.

Continue reading »

Posted in Academic Support

5 ways joining a club will better your life

studentclubblog-imageOne of the best things about being a college student is all of the new opportunities you are afforded.  Beyond the classroom there are many ways for a student to realize their full potential, and joining a student club is one of the best ways to get involved on campus.

There are many reasons why joining a student club is beneficial, both personally and professionally. What areas of your life do you want to improve?

Make new friends and connections

Once you graduate and move into a professional field, networking will be essential in both job growth and reach. This is true of almost any area. Joining a club gives you the opportunity to not only make some new, like-minded friends, but also stretch your networking muscles. Continue reading »

Posted in Events, Student Life