Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC)

Community College of Allegheny County

C4: Community College Completion Corps

 

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CCAC hosted Dr. Rod Risley, Executive Director of Phi Theta Kappa, on Thursday, March 14 as part of CCAC’s C4 Celebration. Dr. Risley spoke to students, faculty, and staff at Allegheny Campus about our task to develop a trained workforce in order for the United States of America to be able to compete in local, national, and global economies. In order to accomplish this goal, PTK students launched a nationwide initiative titled C4 to encourage 5 million more American students to complete their associate degrees or other college credentials in the next eight years.  C4, the community college completion corps is all about students helping students become successful and encouraging others to complete their associate degree or other college credential

 Dr. Risley explained how the United States has fallen from first place to 16th among the 34 industrialized nations in terms of the percentage of adults having earned a higher education credential.  Last year, the U.S. ranked #25 in math skills. That's a very sobering thought.  He also presented statistics that showed 600,000 American manufacturing jobs are ready to be filled except there are not enough trained workers with appropriate skill sets to fill those positions.  Similarly, the healthcare field currently has 500,000 available jobs and, again, Americans are not taking those jobs because their educational training has not prepared them for these positions. 

 In fewer than six years, nearly 75% of all new jobs will require a post-secondary credential or degree stated Dr. Risley.  Community colleges need to rise to the challenge of educating and graduating our students in areas where the job market is wide open and waiting for skilled workers:  Health, Transportation/ Distribution/Logistics, Business, Information Technology, Manufacturing, and Culinary/Hospitality fields.

 Overall, the C4 challenge was well-met at CCAC. In the three days prior to Dr. Risley's presentation, over 600 CCAC students signed the commitment pledge, promising to complete their degree or certificate program. 

History

C4 stands for Community College Completion Corps led by Phi Theta Kappa students. The purpose of C4 is to significantly increase the number of graduates at community colleges on an annual basis. At CCAC, each student who signs the completion pledge will be given a C4 wrist band and a chance to win a free limo ride to and from May Commencement Ceremonies along with free coverage for a cap and gown. A raffle will be held at each campus for students who sign the commitment pledge.

In October 2010 the first White House Summit on Community Colleges was hosted by Dr. Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden and a community college professor. President Obama, philanthropist Melinda Gates and a host of speakers praised community colleges for serving almost half of the nation's college students and playing a pivotal role in educating the workforce.

Statistics show that students who obtain an associate degree or certificate earn about $400,000 more during their lifetime than those without a degree. So, the college is very serious about doing all that we can to support student completion here at CCAC. An increased number of college graduates and skilled, certified employees will have a tremendous, positive impact on our local communities in Western Pennsylvania. From our 2011 Graduate Survey, 95% of our graduates live and work in the region.

President Obama has called for community colleges to produce an additional 5 million degrees and certificates in the next 10 years, part of his goal to restore the United States as the world's leader in college graduates. CCAC’s role is to double its annual graduation rate to at least 3300 by 2020 and then maintain or exceed this rate as we move forward.

Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, with chapters at each of the CCAC campuses, is the largest honor society in higher education with 1,250 chapters on college campuses in all 50 of the United States, Canada, Germany, Peru, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than two million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 100,000 students inducted annually.

CCAC has four Phi Theta Kappa chapters, one at each campus. For more information on how to join, contact your local campus today!

Campus/Chapter

Advisor

Contact Information

Allegheny

Alpha Mu Theta

Gaina Miklusko

412.237.6541

gmiklusko@ccac.edu

South

Alpha Iota Eta

Ben Williams

412.469.6246

bwilliams2@ccac.edu

North

Alpha Lambda Nu

Nick Duerlinger

412.369-4122

nduerlinger@ccac.edu

Boyce

Sigma Omicron

Linda Neubauer

724.325.6635

lneubauer@ccac.edu


More information

What is C4?
C4 stands for Community College Completion Corps led by Phi Theta Kappa students and staff. The purpose of C4 is to significantly increase the number of graduates at community colleges on an annual basis. Read the top ten reasons for completing a community college.

What is Phi Theta Kappa?
Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, with chapters at each of the four CCAC campuses, is the largest honor society in higher education with 1,250 chapters on college campuses in all 50 of the United States, Canada, Germany, Peru, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than two million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 100,000 students inducted annually.

Who initiated this event?
Per 2010 the first White House Summit on Community Colleges was hosted by Dr. Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden and a community college professor. President Obama, philanthropist Melinda Gates and a host of speakers praised community colleges for serving almost half of the nation's college students and playing a pivotal role in educating the workforce. President Obama has called for community colleges to produce an additional 5 million degrees and certificates in the next 10 years, part of his goal to restore the United States as the world's leader in college graduates. CCAC’s role is to double its annual graduation rate to at least 3300 by 2020 and then maintain or exceed this rate as we move forward.

Why promote C4 and student graduation?
Statistics show the surest way for anyone to land a job in his or her chosen field is to finish college and earn a degree or certificate. Statistics show that students who obtain an associate degree or certificate earn about $400,000 more during their lifetime than those without a degree. So, the college is very serious about doing all that we can to support student completion here at CCAC. An increased number of college graduates and skilled, certified employees will have a tremendous, positive impact on our local communities in Western Pennsylvania. From our 2011 Graduate Survey Report, 95% of our graduates indicated that they live and work in the region.

When are the events scheduled for CCAC this year?
March 11-14, 2013.

What are the events scheduled for CCAC?
The Completion Events at CCAC for March 2013 include:

  • March 11 through 13:  Signing Day for Degree Completion at each campus from 10am-1pm and from 5pm-7pm. Students will also be able to make appointments with Academic Advisors and other support staff. Register for Raffle. Sign up for Dr. Risley’s presentation.
  • March 12 and 13: Graduation Countdown at each campus from 10am-1pm and from 5pm-7pm. Students will be able to have degree audits/major check sheets completed, be able to make appointments with academic advisors and other support staff. Register for Raffle. Sign up for Dr. Risley’s presentation. 
  • March 14: Completion Celebration at 1 pm at Allegheny Campus at the Student Services Center Auditorium with a presentation by Dr. Rod Risley, Executive Director of Phi Theta Kappa. All are invited and refreshments will be served. 

Who is Dr. Risley?
Dr. Rod Risley, Executive Director of Phi Theta Kappa spoke on Thursday, March 14 at 1:00 pm at Allegheny Campus on the importance of Degree Completion, your commitment, and your future.

Dr. Rod Risley is an exciting and dynamic speaker who has served as Executive Director of Phi Theta Kappa since 1985. As a community college graduate himself, Dr. Risley has been instrumental in increasing scholarships, providing leadership development and eliminating barriers for transfer for all community college students.

He is a strong advocate for community colleges and the opportunities for educational excellence they offer to traditional and non-traditional students. He served on the 21st Century Commission on the Future of Community Colleges. Currently, he serves on the 21st Century Implementation Teams Steering Committee, is co-chair of the Faculty Engagement and Leadership Development Implementation Team, and is a member of the College Completion Implementation Team.