Reading, PA, May 22, 2021 – Despite challenges facing the academic communities during the past year, Reading A
Reading, PA, May 22, 2021 – Despite challenges facing the academic communities during the past year, Reading Area Community College (RACC) and Reading High School have successfully continued their Reading College Knights program. Fourteen Reading High School seniors, including two RACC presidential scholars, completed the course remotely. Five of these students have committed to attend RACC after graduation.
The program allows college-ready Reading High seniors to take a three-credit college success strategies course through RACC. The course is designed to support student learning and academic success by addressing academic skills, career and academic planning as well as financial literacy. Emphasis is placed on the student’s academic and personal development in the college. This unique course, developed by RACC Foundational Studies Associate Professors Denise Strohmayr and Teri Floyd-Brumm, recently won the 2019 League for Innovation in the Community College Innovation of the Year Award.
Now in its third year, the Reading School District supports seniors who are academically ready for college courses an opportunity to take RACC courses in the spring of their senior year. The overall success rates of these students demonstrate the commitment faculty and staff at both institutions to smoothly transition high school students to college.
A recent graduate of the program says, “The things I learned in the College Knights Program have been tremendous in helping me better remember lectures, understand text and organize my train of thought. I have practiced active listening in personal situations as well. All of this has reduced my stress level and the results have been extremely positive in my life.”
“Our colleagues at the Reading School District believe in the same things we at RACC believe in – being an anchor institution that provides opportunity and hope for our students and for this community. Through the College Knights Program, we hope students gain the college experience they will remember throughout their college career,” says RACC President, Dr. Susan Looney.
To learn more about the College Knights Program, contact Kristen Marcinko, assistant director of community and academic partnerships, at 610.372.4721 ext. 5127.
Reading, PA, May 22, 2021 – William “Kit” Jackson, a senior at Oley Valley High School, graduated from Reading
Reading, PA, May 22, 2021 – William “Kit” Jackson, a senior at Oley Valley High School, graduated from Reading Area Community College (RACC) with an Associate of Science Transfer Degree on May 7, days before he will also graduate from high school. Kit combined RACC dual enrollment classes he took during his sophomore, junior and senior years at Oley Valley High School with RACC’s campus and online courses to complete the 63-credit degree this May. Kit plans to attend Bucknell University this fall to major in computer science.
While jointly attaining a high school diploma and a college associate degree would seem like an overwhelming workload, Kit also found time for activities outside of academics. He is in the school marching and jazz bands, has a part time job at a local horse farm and stables; and recently placed third in the TSA (Technology Student Association) statewide Computer Science and Information Technology Competition.
“The dual enrollment program at RACC has been a great way for me to get a head start on my four year college degree, and also get me closer to a career in cybersecurity. Balancing the academic requirements of my diploma and associate degree, as well as my activities outside of school has really helped me develop the time management skills I will need at Bucknell and in my career,” says Jackson.
RACC dual enrollment students concurrently complete their requirements for high school graduation at the same time they earn college credit. Students with a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher, and/or recommendation from their high school teacher and guidance counselor are eligible for dual enrollment courses.
To learn more about the dual enrollment program at RACC, contact Kristen Marcinko, assistant director of community and academic partnerships, at 610.372.4721 ext. 5127.
Reading, PA, Wednesday, May 12, 2021 – Tompkins VIST Bank today announced that it has donated $5,000 to the Fo
Reading, PA, Wednesday, May 12, 2021 – Tompkins VIST Bank today announced that it has donated $5,000 to the Foundation at Reading Area Community College under the Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) Program. The donation is part of the $301,250 the bank has currently earmarked for youth education organizations that qualify under EITC.
Tompkins VIST Bank President and CEO Scott Gruber and Executive Vice President Gary Moyer were present at check ceremony. “In my work with RACC, I’ve been impressed with their focus on educational outreach,” said Moyer, vice chair of the foundation, which provides scholarships to disadvantaged youth in the community. “We’re pleased to support their efforts.”
Dr. Susan Looney, president of RACC commended the value of EITC. “The EITC program is a great way to inspire high school students to continue their education or enter the workforce after high school,” she said.
Reading Area Community College is an accredited, comprehensive, open enrollment education institution that provides the following: Associate degree, Certificate and Diploma Programs; career-focused training; transitional coursework; skills training for business and industry; personal enrichment programs and public service activities. Sponsored by Berks County, the College provides affordable access to meet identified community educational needs.
Tompkins VIST Bank, a subsidiary of Tompkins Financial Corporation, is a locally headquartered community bank with 19 branches serving southeastern Pennsylvania. The bank offers personalized service, local decision-making and a broad range of services for consumers and businesses. These include cash management, commercial loans, and an online business loan application process. Insurance and wealth management services are provided through the Pennsylvania offices of Tompkins Insurance and Tompkins Financial Advisors. Whether you prefer branch or remote mobile banking, we provide the breadth of services and local decision-making to make what’s possible a reality. Locally Focused. A World of Possibilities. More information.
Reading, PA, May 10, 2021 – The need for cybersecurity professionals has increased dramatically as computers a
Reading, PA, May 10, 2021 – The need for cybersecurity professionals has increased dramatically as computers and mobile devices have become essential in our personal and professional lives. Dr. Susan D. Looney, president of Reading Area Community College (RACC) and the RACC administration recognized the need to establish a Cybersecurity Program, which has quickly become very popular for students with technical skills and an intuitive understanding of computer systems.
RACC Cybersecurity faculty member, Michael Hoehl, noticed a trend among the students who had completed the ten course Cybersecurity Program. Some students needed financial assistance with costs to obtain the official certification. Hoehl also happens to be the director of Cybersecurity at Carpenter Technology. Hoehl connected with Linda Bell, associate dean of the Business Division and Tony DeMarco, executive director of the Foundation for Reading Area Community College. Michael’s concept was to appeal to Carpenter Technology’s leadership team for a gift to cover the testing costs for the students who completed RACC’s Cybersecurity curriculum.
The Carpenter Technology Cybersecurity Program has awarded 14 students the funding to cover the costs of their official certification test. Linda Bell has also arranged for each of these students to have access to a test preparation workshop in advance of the rigorous test as part of the Carpenter Technology award.
“We have cleared certain monetary obstacles for these talented individuals to achieve certification and find the career of their dreams in the many cybersecurity opportunities that are available in the industry,” says Hoehl.
“One needs to simply read the news to realize the vulnerability that exists,” says Dr. Looney. “We know regionally as well as nationally, there is a need for qualified cybersecurity professionals. Our program provides a comprehensive cybersecurity education, preparing graduates for advanced technical and management positions in cybersecurity, she continues. We are grateful to Carpenter Technology for their generous contributions that provide direct assistance for these students and for recognizing the importance of developing the next generation of professionals in this critical field.”
Reading, PA, Friday, May 7, 2021 – Reading Area Community College celebrated its 49th Commencement on Friday,
Reading, PA, Friday, May 7, 2021 – Reading Area Community College celebrated its 49th Commencement on Friday, May 7 at Santander Arena. Approximately 800 students graduated from their degree, certificate or diploma programs this year.
Carolína Hidalgo-Ahmed was this year’s student speaker. She was born in San Francisco de Macorís, República Dominicana. At the age of four, she immigrated to the United States with her mother to join her father, who had immigrated to the US a few years earlier. She grew up in the boroughs of New York City, first on the Lower East Side and later Washington Heights, a community known for its rich Dominican diaspora culture. She will continue her education at Millersville University to earn her Bachelor in Social Work (BSW). Carolina is currently working on starting a non-profit organization, PÉCAN The HONE Initiative, which focuses on hands-on nutrition education for children who qualify for free or reduced lunch in Berks County.
RACC President, Dr. Susan D. Looney presented this year’s President’s Award to Berks County entrepreneur, business mogul and philanthropist Rolf Schmidt. Schmidt immigrated to the United States in 1957. His subsequent years in America were filled with business and personal success, which extended beyond the conventional boundaries of those measured by the typical American dream. Rolf’s commitment to educational excellence culminated in the establishment of the Schmidt Training and Technology Center. The center was named in his honor and opened in the spring of 2006. Rolf has been a leader of the Board of the Foundation for Reading Area Community College for thirty years. Rolf’s service to the Foundation started in 1991 and Rolf’s remarkable philanthropy to RACC is only part of his importance as one of the greatest figures in the history of the college.
“This year, especially, it is a privilege and a joy to see so many graduates persevere and take this step toward great success in the years ahead. Our students and graduates continue to inspire me every day, and will continue to make the RACC family of faculty, staff, students and alumni very proud,” Looney stated.