Director of Human Resources, Training & Public Relations Officer
One College Drive
Calais, ME 04619
What is “Maine is IT!”
“Maine is IT!” is a grant awarded through the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grant program to address the growing need in Maine for skilled information technology workers across many industries. This grant will allow WCCC to offer two new two-year degree programs as well as Microsoft Academy certifications.
“Maine is IT!” recognizes the talent at Maine community college’s statewide to compete with states across the country for grants focused on innovation and collaboration.
WCCC will offer a state-of-the-art networking lab to support new programs in Computer Technology, Network Security & Forensics and anticipated certification offerings.
This workforce solution was funded by a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration. Washington County Community College is an equal opportunity employer, adaptive equipment available upon request for individuals with disabilities. WCCC is an EO/AA Employer
CALAIS _ Although the winter of 2013-14 was memorable for its heavy snow and ice cold days that led to broken pipes and huge oil bills, it hasn’t prevented area businesses and individuals from stepping forward to support students at Washington County Community College.
“This winter was a tough one,” WCCC President Joe Cassidy said. “But those people who support the college and the Direct-to-Student Scholarship Fund stand ready to help. It is that spirit of determination in Washington County that has helped make this college a success.”
This year’s fund raiser began in March and already more than 35 businesses have pledged $250 or more to the scholarship program.
The scholarship drive runs in tandem with WCCC’s annual golf tournament co-sponsored by Pratt’s Chevrolet, which has been a huge success for the past 13 years.
Last year, the scholarship drive raised more than $16,000 and it hopes to raise that much and more this year. Scholarships were presented to 55 students last year. “I wish I could describe the sparkle in their eyes and the smiles on their faces when they learn they have been awarded a Direct-to-Student Scholarship. It is priceless,” Cassidy said. “We have had so many wonderful stories about how a scholarship has kept a student in college or helped a student move toward graduation.
Individuals and businesses that have stepped forward to date and have submitted their donations include: Border Electric, Calais Ace Home Center, the Calais Motor Inn, the Cassidy Family Book Scholarship, EBS Building Supplies, the Harold Howland Family Scholarship, PCT Communications, Riverside Electric, Roger’s Auto Sales, St. Croix Regional Technical Center, Tammy Smith Tax and Accounting, the Calais Advertiser, the International Motel, WCCC Student Senate, WCCC Show & Shine, WQDY Inc. and Yancy’s Restaurant. Additional donors include: Harbor Bank and Trust of Lubec and Machias, the Downeast Credit Union of Baileyville and Calais, Downeast LNG of Robbinston, Rob Wyatt, project manager for Downeast LNG of Robbinston, Dr. Brian Hoops of Baileyville, Ken and Jane Brooks Family Scholarship and Shining Star Scholarship of Eastport.
What makes this scholarship program so unique is the role that the individual or business that donates plays in the life of the student as each scholarship created goes directly to the student. As in the past, donors are able to create their scholarship in their name or their business’ name, or in memory of a loved one. Donors choose the program of study they wish to support and create the scholarship criteria.
Just like last year, there will be newspaper articles about this year’s donors as well as information about each donor’s support posted on the college’s website.
Last year, WCCC was named one of the 10% community colleges in the USA by the Aspen Institute and the 46th best community college in the USA by the Best Schools.org. In addition the college was named in the top 25 best community colleges in the USA by the Washington Monthly.
Anyone who would like to participate in the scholarship program can send their donation to Tina Erskine at Washington Community College, One College Drive, Calais, ME 04619. Make checks payable to the WCCC 2014 Scholarship Fund. For more information about the golf tournament or the scholarship program call Erskine at 454-1002.
CALAIS _ For those medical professionals who have to pass a federal exam in order to be certified in Electronic Health Records or for those medical personnel in need of upgrading their skills, Washington County Community College is offering three summer programs this year that should help bolster a career in the medical field.
“We are always mindful of the needs of the professionals in our area,” WCCC President Joe Cassidy said. “So that is why we are offering some summer programs this year that will be advantageous to health care providers. Our summer program coordinator has focused on changes at the federal and state levels and has put together some outstanding packages,” he said.
Topping the list is changes in medical assisting certification. Because of federal changes to the law having to do with Electronic Health Records, those who work as medical assistants will need additional training in order to pass a national exam to be certified, according to Scott Harriman, WCCC’s summer program coordinator and the Dean of Community Education and Student Affairs.
On Aug. 23, 2012, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued a final ruling regarding Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records declaring that medical assistants, including CMAs (AAMA) would be permitted to enter medication orders into the computerized provider-order entry system once certified.
“Because of some changes in how Medicare, Medicaid and insurance does billing, medical assistants, in order to enter certain orders through Electronic Medical Records, have to become certified,” Harriman reiterated. “You don’t have to be certified to be hired, but the government is now saying you have to be certified to do certain things.”
The college has scheduled two separate days, May 30 and July 18, for preparation for the Certified Medical Assisting exam. “So medical assistants who are not currently certified can take the one-day course,” he said. The fee is $50.
Second on the list of important courses offered this summer is the ICD-10 Training that will focus on new medical billing procedures. “This is the billing system for Medicare and Medicaid and insurance billing,” Harriman said. “Right now those who do medical billing use ICD-9, but the federal government made updates to that and it is now ICD-10,” Harriman said. “We plan to bring someone in teach local billing using the ICD-10.”
Another medical program to be offered this summer is the Certified Nursing Assistant’s training course. “This course allows men and women to sit for the state exam to be a CNA. “There is 70 hours of classroom, 20 hours of lab time that includes going into the nurses’ lab and doing patient transfers and things like that and there is 70 hours of clinical time,” Harriman said. “We have looked to the needs of the community and tried to develop courses to meet those needs.”
However, this summer is not all about work. The college also is offering programs for those interested in learning and those just looking to have fun. Courses include: developmental mathematics and English, GED tutoring and training, ServSafe Program for those in the health-food industry and digital photography.
“If you have a food license from the state of Maine at least one of your employees has to be trained in the ServSafe Program,” Harriman said. The course has been offered in the past and is of interest to area health-food facilities.
For photo buffs, there will be a class on digital photography. The course is limited to 16 students “If there is enough interest, we plan to offer the course this summer,” Harriman said. “What we also are planning to do, based on interest, is offer a course called Basic Photo Editing.” That class will be limited to eight participants.
CALAIS _ Summer is going to be a whole lot of fun for those young people who sign up for this year’s Washington County Community College Summer Program.
WCCC President Joe Cassidy said he was excited about this year’s proposed summer classes. “This is a great opportunity for area students from Grand Lake Stream to Steuben to take part in some exciting and fun summer programs,” he said. “We are pleased that we are able to offer a smorgasbord of classes that should be of interest to almost everyone.”
A popular course that was held last year and is being offered again this year is the Baby Sitting Course scheduled for June 25-27. The two-day course will teach those young people who are interested in making money some of the basic skills and techniques necessary to be a top-notch babysitter. In addition, a certificate is awarded to those who have successfully completed the course.
“That was a very successful course last year. The course stands these young people apart from their friends because they can show they have a certificate that they successfully completed the program,” said Scott Harriman, WCCC’s assistant dean of Community Education and Student Affairs.
Another summer school program this year will focus on Maine history. The class is scheduled to start June 24 and will run for four days. The emphasis will be on Maine history from 1820 to now. “In 1820, Maine became a state. We know there are history buffs in our schools and we hope to capture that interest with this class,” he said.
This summer is not all about classroom activities as the college has scheduled a one-day Campfire Cuisine Course on June 28. Students and parents alike can travel to Greenland Point Center in Princeton and learn how to cook outdoors. The minimum enrollment for this class is eight. “This is a great class for students interested in camping or just cooking in their backyard,” the dean added.
Focusing on the rich beauty of the area, the college also is offering an Under the Sea Camp for students beginning on July 9, and running for three days. Students will have an opportunity to observe sea life in its natural habitat and learn about the rivers and oceans and the underwater life that they contain and sustain.
For youngsters who are interested in being a firefighter, police officer, or Emergency Medical Technician there will be a fabulous introductory course that begins on July 22. Taught by area experts, the class will focus on each of the three disciplines.
In August, the Fun and Fitness Camp is for those who are looking for some exercise this summer. Students are invited to the campus for a week of fitness related activities ranging from walking to Zumba lessons.
Art enthusiasts are invited to attend the WCCC Art Camp. The camp will deal with basic art concepts and mediums and will provide an opportunity for those youngsters interested in drawing or painting to continue to hone their skills this summer.
For those students who are interested in creative writing, there will be a creative writing class beginning on Aug. 19. Students can spend a week at WCCC working on their creative writing skills, everything from short story to novellas. It will be an exciting time for students to work creatively with others who share similar writing interests.