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Doors to Opportunity Podcast with Dr. Susan Huard

Opportunity Knocks Recording

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."

- MCC President Susan Huard (2010-2019)

Doors to Opportunity Podcast Archive

Episode 38: Working in the Non-Profit Sector | June 29, 2014

What do the NFL, Catholic Medical Center, the World Cup Soccer Club of Greater Nashua, Greenpeace, and the American Red Cross all have in common? They're all nonprofits. Ten percent of all workers in the U.S. work for a non-profit organization; here in NH, we have more than 8000 nonprofits registered with the Attorney General’s office. In this show, Susan and her guests talk about what it takes to work in these kinds of organizations.

Susan's guests are Charlie Sherman, the executive director of New Horizons for New Hampshire, Inc., which runs an adult homeless shelter, a soup kitchen, food pantry and Angie's Shelter for Women, and Jodi Harper, the Director of Literacy and BRING IT!!! Community Collaboration for Granite United Way.

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Episode 37: The Pros and Cons of a Gap Year | June 22, 2014

Approximately 1.2% of the new high school graduates in June 2013 took "a gap year," a year away from formal education. What "gappers" choose to do with their time varies widely, from expensive study-abroad programs to volunteer programs like City Year to staying at home and saving up for college. Some students also use the gap year to bolster their resumé, and then re-apply to colleges with their new post-high school experience under their belts.

Susan's guests are Katie Floyd, who took a gap year, and is now the Regional Recruitment Manager for NH for City Year, an organization where many "gappers" spend their year, and Jay Hauser, a senior college counselor at the Center for College Planning at the NH Higher Education Assistance Foundation (NHHEAF).

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Episode 35: Taking a Look at Home Schooling in NH | June 08, 2014

From 2002-12, the number of students being home-schooled in NH rose by 29 percent, to more than 5000 students, while public school enrollment fell by 9 percent, and private school enrollment fell by 22 percent. But "homeschooling" doesn't necessarily these kids are just sitting at the kitchen table cracking the books. Their parents are exploring different ways for their children to get the education they need, and, as they get older, to be exposed to college-level learning while they're still high-school age.

Susan's guest is Andreas Reif, a Regional Leader with Primerica Financial Services in Nashua, an adjunct professor at several area colleges, and teacher of college-level high school classes at AGAPE Homeschool Co-operative in Auburn. He's also the father of seven children, all of whom have been or are homeschooled.

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Episode 34: Taking a New Look at Non-Traditional Students | June 01, 2014

The Wall Street Journal online reports that only about 29% of all college undergraduates are so-called "traditional" students who start college right after high school, attend full-time, and live on campus. The article suggests that colleges should change the way they look at "non-traditional" students, who are now the majority of college undergrads.

Susan's guest is Adam Moy, a non-trad 2014 graduate of MCC with an associate degree in Business Communications, a member of Kappa Beta Delta, the business honor society, and Phi Theta Kappa, the honor society for community college students, and a student representative of the CCSNH Board of Trustees.

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Episode 33: College and Students with Disabilities | May 25, 2014

A recent study has found that increasing numbers of high school students with disabilities plan to continue their education after they graduate from high school. But the study also found that only about 25% of the students who received some kind of help for their disabilities while they were in high school told their colleges about their disability. And in many cases, that means those students did not receive the help they needed to be successful in college.

Susan's guest is Heather Norcross-Geoffroy, the counselor for Special Populations at MCC.

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Episode 31: Focus on Careers: Accounting | May 11, 2014

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, accounting jobs are expected to grow by 13 percent annually through 2022. U.S. News and World Reports lists "Accounting" as #3 on its list of Best Business Jobs, with high opportunities for upward mobility, and above average job flexibility.

Susan's guests are Micheline West, CPA, CMA, and the Professor of Accounting and Finance at MCC, and Gregory Martakos, Recruiting Manager at KBW Financial Staffing & Recruiting in Bedford.

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Episode 30: Congratulations! You've Graduated...Time to Pay Back Your College Loans | May 04, 2014

NH students graduate with the second highest college debt in the U.S., averaging just under $33,000. And we're also second highest in the percentage of students who graduate with debt, at 74%.

Susan's guest talks about how to manage that debt. Tori Berube is an Associate Vice President for College Planning & Outreach at the NHHEAF Network Organizations.

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Episode 29: Stay Work Play NH: Helping to Keep Young Professionals in NH | April 27, 2014

In NH, more people are retiring every year than are entering the workforce. Part of the reason is that many young professionals, the 25- to 35-year-olds, leave New Hampshire to begin their careers.

Susan's guests are involved in the efforts to recruit and retain young professionals. Kate Luczko is the Executive Director of Stay Work Play-New Hampshire, an organization that encourages young workers and recent college grads to consider staying in NH when they're thinking about employment and lifestyle opportunities.

Nicholas del'Etoile is a Sales Representative at Liberty Mutual Insurance, and the chairman of the Derry/Londonderry Young Professionals Network, the state's 12th and newest YPN.

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Episode 28: Deciphering College Financial Aid Award Letters | April 20, 2014

April is "crunch time" for high school students who face May 1 deadlines to notify colleges of their intentions to enroll in the fall. Most have received financial aid award letters outlining the scholarships, grants and loans the college is offering to help cover tuition. Those letters can be confusing; sometimes surprising; other times, disappointing if the numbers don’t work out as students had hoped. And for students who have been accepted at more than one college, comparing the award letters to make the best financial choice can be difficult.

Susan's guest is Kerry Koziell, a College Outreach Specialist at NHHEAF, the NH Higher Education Assistance Foundation, and an expert on deciphering those letters to make the best decisions.

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Episode 27: Focus On Careers: HVAC (Heating, Ventilating & Air Conditioning) | April 13, 2014

A career in HVAC offers good salaries, opportunity for promotion, and, with demand in NH for skilled HVAC technicians expected to grow by 21% from 2012 to 2022, job security. Susan's guest is Eddie Curran, an associate professor at MCC and the coordinator of the Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning program at the college.

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