Reading, PA, December 11, 2018 – Reading Area Community College (RACC) has been awarded $75,000 as part of a grant from the BB&T Economic Growth Fund through the Berks County Community Foundation. The grant will be used to support the RACC President’s Initiative Fund. Specifically, the grant will help fund the expansion of the Peer Mentorship Program for five semesters from spring 2019 through May 2021, and will double the opportunities for mentorship for each semester.
The RACC Peer Mentorship Program serves to promote academic success, and increase the student graduation rates. First-year RACC students are paired with outstanding upper-class students who act as mentors throughout the academic year. “This grant from the BB&T Economic Growth Fund will help us expand the Peer Mentor Program to assist first-year students in their academic success. We know that students who participate in a quality mentor program are more prepared academically for challenges they face during their first year of college,“ says RACC President Susan D. Looney. “The funding will also be used for scholarships which will allow these funds to support RACC’s mission of offering access, opportunity, excellence and hope for all students.”
“We are excited to have this opportunity to support RACC’s President’s Initiative Fund, and look forward to seeing the positive impact it will have on Reading Area Community College students and their academic success,” says David Roland, BB&T market president, Berks County/Northern Montgomery County. The BB&T Economic Growth Fund was established in 2017 to invest in local economic development opportunities.
The Berks County Community Foundation received $2.5 million in connection with BB&T’s acquisition of National Penn in 2016. The Fund allows the Community Foundation to support charitable projects and initiatives that impact economic development efforts in Berks County.
To learn more about the RACC Peer Mentorship Program or the Berks County Community Foundation visit racc.edu or bccf.org.
Pam Gockley had a difficult start to her education. After being expelled from high school, Pam sought guidance and support, luckily she found RACC. “My education at RACC was far beyond the books, tests and reports. The spirit I found in the students, faculty and staff was far more inspirational than the diploma.”
While in high school, Pam struggled with learning and was placed in special education classes. Later in life, Pam discovered she was undiagnosed dyslexic and the special education classes were the worst place for her as a kid. “It was in these classes, that I was bullied, and the school lacked the ability to deal with what I was going through. This is what ultimately led to me getting expelled.”
When Pam first enrolled at RACC she quickly learned that she had a lot of catching up to get her education to the college level, but she admits this is one of the best things that could have ever happened to her. “The faculty and staff at RACC took the time make sure I was prepared to go onto the college courses. That was huge for me because it was the first time someone in education made the effort to understand where I was academically and actually helped me through the process.”
After graduating from RACC and Kutztown University with a degree in Business Management, Pam started her own business and has continued to be an entrepreneur for 22 years. During that time Pam has had 13 for-profit startups and more recently, one non-profit. “After 22 years of entrepreneurship I feel that it’s finally time that I give back and help kids that are in the same position as me and even much more violent situations, including gun violence.”
Pam’s recent start-up is called The Camel Project and is based on Pam’s book, “Not All Camels Are in The Desert.” Pam wrote the book to share her high school experience with students, and how she overcame the problems. “My mission is to help kids understand that first, it’s not their fault; second, they are not alone; and third, it happens to more people than most realize.”
The first initiative of The Camel Project is a stop bullying program that helps kids learn about self-awareness, self-confidence, and how to create a great support system; all of which Pam was lacking in high school. For Pam, RACC was the launching point to understanding how an educational institution can help a student become a better version of themselves. “At RACC, there was a sense of family, security and encouragement I never knew before. I totally credit RACC for helping me throughout my education, for showing me what should have been done and giving me the inspiration to go out and help others.”
Reading, PA, December 6, 2018 – The Practical Nursing Program of Reading Area Community College celebrated its
Reading, PA, December 6, 2018 – The Practical Nursing Program of Reading Area Community College celebrated its Commencement on Thursday, December 6, 2018 at 4PM in the Miller Center for the Arts on the Reading Area Community College campus.
A total of 22 students received Certificates in Practical Nursing. During the past 25 years, RACC has graduated more than 900 students through the Practical Nurse Program, which then makes them eligible to sit for the PA State Board of Nursing Licensing Exam. Students in the 2018 graduating class are: Angelica Baczyski, Ashley Baker, Shelly Boltz, Carissa Carr-Emmel, Fabienne Coulanges, Lauren DeAcosta, Rebecca Deets, Cindy DeLosSantos, Catteline Edmond, Yamilette Figueroa-Rosario, Shannon Hertzog, Michel Hidalgo, Jacklyn Hightower, Hannah Martin, Monica Martinez, Henry Michel, Jr. , Beena Patel, Wilfri Peña-Rodriguez, Rachel Reightneour , Diana Robinson, Jesus Tavarez-Rodriguez, Margaret Yamah.
Awards were given to students who excelled academically and exhibited outstanding clinical performance throughout the Practical Nursing Program. The Frances Troutman Award for Nursing Excellence was given to Henry Michel Jr. The Award for Outstanding Performance and Nursing Professionalism was given to Wilfri Peña-Rodriquez. The Country Meadows Award for Academics and Leadership was given to Hannah Martin.
Congratulations to the Class of 2018. Good luck in your nursing career.
Reading, PA — Alvernia University and Reading Area Community College (RACC) are expanding their dual admission partnership to include full-tuition scholarships for qualified RACC graduates through a special Reading Collegiate Scholars Program, modeled after Alvernia’s highly successful program aimed at the city’s high school students.
“Alvernia has benefitted from a longstanding relationship with RACC for decades as many of their students have successfully transferred to our university to complete four-year degrees,” said Alvernia President Tom Flynn. “We welcome this new opportunity to advance our relationship to the next level including building upon our Reading Collegiate Scholars Program.”
Alvernia’s expanded Reading Collegiate Scholars Program will now include two full-tuition scholarships for qualified RACC graduates beginning fall 2019, increasing to four by fall 2020. In addition, scholarship support will be expanded for all RACC graduates who transfer to Alvernia and meet academic and service criteria.
“Community college students who transfer to four-year universities graduate at a rate well above the national average and way above traditional four-year students,” said RACC President Susan Looney. “We are especially excited about strengthening our partnership with Alvernia to provide even more opportunities for RACC students such as expanding access for RACC graduates to the Reading Collegiate Scholars program,” she added.
The Reading Collegiate Scholars Program enrolls underserved but capable students from the City of Reading and provides support, incentives and financial aid designed to ensure students successfully complete a college education. Started in 2014, the first group has a 100% graduation rate. The program is supported primarily by private donors, local businesses and foundations, and university funding.
Reading, PA – Reading Area Community College is pleased to announce that Huascar S.
Reading, PA – Reading Area Community College is pleased to announce that Huascar S. Rivera has recently been appointed to the Board of Trustees for the college by the Berks County Board of Commissioners.
Rivera is presently employed as the vice president of WSK & Associates, a security consulting company based in Wyomissing, PA. He is a retired Deputy Commissioner of Administration and Professional Responsibility for the Pennsylvania State Police with 25 years of service.
As Deputy Commissioner he oversaw operations of the Bureau of Professional Responsibility, Training and Education, Human Resources, and Member Assistance Program. Having held multiple ranks from Trooper to Lieutenant Colonel, he served in the following positions: Area Commander, Director of the Bureau of Communications and Information Services, Troop Commander, Emergency Planning and Preparedness Officer, Section Commander, Station Commander, and Criminal Investigator.
During his tenure he also established the Commonwealth’s Risk Vulnerability Assessment Team. He also held responsibilities under the Office of Domestic Security for the development of Emergency Response Policies and was the State Police liaison officer to the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency.
Rivera graduated from the Pennsylvania State Police Academy in Hershey, PA. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy, 213th Session, and holds an AAS in Criminal Justice from Reading Area Community College.