Doors to Opportunity! was a weekly 30-minute radio show that aired on Sunday mornings on WGIR-AM 610 from October 2013 to April 2016. MCC President Susan Huard hosted the show, and each week the discussions focused on topics related to higher education and careers.
"Community colleges are about jobs. Everyone has to go to work at some point and make a living, but people don't always have enough opportunity to hear about what's out there, or what their true options are. That's the point of this show. Some of the best jobs are invisible to the public; I want to shed light on options. Our goal for this show was to provide information, ideas and inspiration to help you reach your dreams."
New Hampshire Jobs for America’s Graduates brings together schools, families, young people and employers to raise awareness about career opportunities and a brighter future. The basic goal: prevent school dropouts, and help those who have lost their way to regain a sense of direction and focus. Susan is joined by Kate Dichard, the executive director of NH-JAG, and by a local student, Thomas Decker.
There is a special program in Manchester that serves at-risk youth, from ages 16-24, through free vocational and skill training administered by the U.S. Department of Labor. Job Corps has been training young adults for meaningful careers since 1964, and recently opened a new facility on Dunbarton Road in Manchester. Susan's guests are Tamer Koheil, Director of the Manchester Job Corps Center and Maricella Rich, a Job Corps student.
While job growth is predicted to match overall economic growth of about 2% per year in the Granite State, there remain concerns about the so-called "graying of New Hampshire", meaning our population is aging, more people are retiring and we are getting mixed signals about how well we are collectively attracting young workers to put down roots, develop careers and raise families in our state. Susan interviews Stay, Work, Play New Hampshire President & CEO Kate Luczko, to find out about the latest events and initiatives underway to encourage young professionals to stay in NH. According to the New Hampshire Center for Public Policy Studies, our workforce will decline nearly 10% between now and the year 2030, if we don't do something to reverse our current trends.
Volunteerism, service-learning and community service are woven into many students' college experiences. It is increasingly becoming a requirement as part of the overall higher education experience, but it largely still relies on that spirit of volunteerism. At Manchester Community College, every year, students contribute approximately 50,000 hours of community service – locally and abroad. To discuss community service opportunities in college, Susan speaks with MCC's Director of Student Life, Aileen Clay and an MCC student, Derrick LaBranche, who recently returned from an Alternative Break Service Trip to Ecuador.
Lavallee Brensinger architects, Alice Carey and Doug Shilo discuss careers in design and architecture, as well as the design and construction of a new building at MCC which will house a Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) and Electrical Technology learning center.
Dan Hebert, State President of JumpStart NH discusses how to make smart decisions with limited resources and what habits young people and students can create now that will serve them well financially in the future.
According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, more healthcare employers are requiring nurses to have baccalaureate degrees (BSNs). In 2013, 44 percent of hospitals and other health care settings required new nurses to have BSNs, up almost 5 percent since 2012. And 79 percent of employers are expressing a strong preference for BSN-prepared graduates.
Fortunately, there is a response to this demand through a new partnership between the Community College System of New Hampshire and the University System of New Hampshire, which makes it easier and far less expensive to pursue a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing.
Known as the "RN to BSN" program, New Hampshire residents who graduate from a NH community college can now pursue a BSN from Plymouth State University or Granite State College for the same cost per credit as New Hampshire Community College tuition.
Joining Susan to discuss this RN to BSN "public pathway" program is Jacquie Poirier, Admissions Counselor for MCC Allied Health Programs, and Lisa McCurley, Director of Nursing at Great Bay Community College.
Today, only 51% of New Hampshire adults have a college degree, and it is estimated that by 2025, more than 65% of the available jobs will require some post-secondary credential or degree. The need for highly skilled workers is there, but what do we do? Since our state’s high school population is declining, one of the best ways to try to meet this goal is to bring older, so-called "non-traditional" students into the classroom. Joining Susan to discuss ways that life experience can factor-in to obtaining college credit, is Major Wheelock, Director of the Academic Success Center at MCC.
The U.S. Department of Labor predicts that jobs in the biotechnology industry will continue to grow approximately 10% nationally by the year 2022. The New England Biotech Association estimates there are 5,000 biotech jobs in New Hampshire (which is small in comparison to the 78,000 biotech jobs in Massachusetts), but the Granite State is taking steps to become more of a player in this field. Dr. Kyle MacLea, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences at UNH-Manchester, discusses the biotechnology industry and the educational pathways that lead to careers in this growing field.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, approximately 13% of public school students between the ages of 3 and 21 receive Special Education Services. And 35% of those students have specific learning disabilities. There is much focus on ensuring these students get through the public school years, but what then? What does post-secondary education look like for these "non-traditional" students? Melissa Olson, Special Populations Counselor at MCC discusses how students and colleges navigate the challenges and opportunities for students with disabilities.