You are here

Newsletter Archive

Newsletter Banner

November, 2018

Dr. Pedraja and students inside Food Pantry
November, 2018

In just two weeks, with the help of 118 donors, $10,053 was raised for Quinsigamond Community College's Food Pantry. The college took the initiative to open a food pantry after on campus studies found that close to 50 percent of its students experienced food insecurity.

The two week online fundraiser, which ended on Giving Tuesday, was a combined effort by the QCC community to “growl back against...

More...

In just two weeks, with the help of 118 donors, $10,053 was raised for Quinsigamond Community College's Food Pantry. The college took the initiative to open a food pantry after on campus studies found that close to 50 percent of its students experienced food insecurity.

The two week online fundraiser, which ended on Giving Tuesday, was a combined effort by the QCC community to “growl back against hunger on QCC’s campus.” A video that highlighted the need for the pantry was shared across social media platforms, with periodic updates by QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja and QCC students who volunteer in the pantry.

“It’s truly heart-warming to see that our ‘ask’ resonated with so many people,” Dr. Pedraja said. “For those who donated, I thank you for helping to make a difference in the lives of our students. Your generous gifts will be used to help combat our fight against hunger.”

With the food pantry consistently feeding well over 150 students, the need to keep it sustained is great. Dr. Pedraja reminds everyone that hunger doesn’t end even though the formal fundraising campaign has concluded.

“Your continued support is needed to help us continue to help our students make a difference in their lives now and in the years to come. Their future depends on all of us,” he said. 

If you didn't get a chance to make a donation during this campaign, please continue to help us in the fight against food insecurity on our campus by making a donation today.

  • Gene Haas Foundation check
November, 2018

Quinsigamond Community College recently received a $10,000 Gene Haas Foundation Grant. Developed by Gene Haas, owner of Haas Automation, Inc., the largest machine tool builder in the western world, the Foundation was formed in 1999 to support the charitable needs within its local community of Ventura County, California. As the Foundation grew, so did the need for a stronger manufacturing workforce.  Reports such...

More...

Quinsigamond Community College recently received a $10,000 Gene Haas Foundation Grant. Developed by Gene Haas, owner of Haas Automation, Inc., the largest machine tool builder in the western world, the Foundation was formed in 1999 to support the charitable needs within its local community of Ventura County, California. As the Foundation grew, so did the need for a stronger manufacturing workforce.  Reports such as “The Skills Gap in U.S. Manufacturing 2015 and Beyond” projected that, “Over the next decade, nearly three and a half million manufacturing jobs will likely need to be filled,” confirming the need for a skilled manufacturing workforce.

Today the focus and mission of the Gene Haas Foundation is in line with the needs of the educational community, to support manufacturing and help introduce students to careers in machining and related technologies. To date, the Foundation has donated over $52 million to support educators. High schools and colleges are eligible to apply for the funds on an annual cycle.

"There’s a shortage of skilled labor and as more people age out of the industry, there’s a dire need to replace them with well-educated, skilled workers,” said QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja.

Coordinator of QCC’s Manufacturing Technology Program, Lee Duerden, said the Haas Foundation Grant will be used for manufacturing scholarships that will be awarded in the spring.

Mr. Duerden said the hope is to use the funds to support further education in the field of computer numerical control (CNC) and could possibly be opened up to graduating vocational high school students and veterans. This is the first time the college has applied for the grant.

“I had found out about the award through my network and our relationship with Haas Technical Education Center (HTEC). QCC manufacturing is a HTEC approved member,” Mr. Duerden said. “I am applying again for next year so hopefully this could become an annual award. We are hoping to promote CNC as a skill and for this we need to provide opportunities for further education. This can be from K-12 to community college, or from community college to a four-year institute. These funds will hopefully help encourage students by breaking down some financial boundaries and providing them the opportunity to advance their education in this field.”

“The Haas commitment to education is visible in many ways; the Gene Haas Foundation is a significant portion of how we support educators to grow their pipeline and engage students to prepare them for amazing careers in advanced manufacturing.  We are pleased to work with Quinsigamond Community College to build the future workforce in their region,” said Toni Neary, Director of Education, for Trident Machine Tools (a Haas Factory Outlet, in Windsor, Ct.).

  • Quinsigamond Community College alumna Dianna Provencher
November, 2018

As the Business Manager for Central MA Regional Planning Commission (CMRPC), owner of Little Bit Farm and Apiary in Leicester, as well as resident beekeeper and Leicester selectman, mother of two and grandmother of three, Quinsigamond Community College alumna Dianna Provencher is one busy lady. Persevering through challenges has been a way of life since she was a young girl who had to drop out of high...

More...

As the Business Manager for Central MA Regional Planning Commission (CMRPC), owner of Little Bit Farm and Apiary in Leicester, as well as resident beekeeper and Leicester selectman, mother of two and grandmother of three, Quinsigamond Community College alumna Dianna Provencher is one busy lady. Persevering through challenges has been a way of life since she was a young girl who had to drop out of high school to help her family when her father got sick.

“The three older kids (there were also five younger ones at home) went to work so I never graduated high school but I wanted to be educated,” she said. “I had an early bucket list and wanted my education back.”

Obtaining her education would not come easily. Ms. Provencher became a single parent to two young children, working to support them but also working toward her dream of an education and better life. Ms. Provencher took and passed her GED and when her kids were both in school began going to QCC. She took classes at night and during the day when she could fit them in between waitressing and taking care of her children.

“I was pretty nervous because I had already missed subjects by not finishing high school. I thought, ‘Where do I start and am I good enough; am I smart enough?’’ she said, adding, “I wanted to have a real diploma. I wanted to have something no one could take away.”

Ms. Provencher quickly found that QCC was a place where she could attain her educational dreams through the help and support of faculty and staff.

“My role models were my professors,” she said. “To this day I have a lot of respect for teachers.”

Ms. Provencher not only graduated from QCC with a degree in Business Administration, she also earned a degree in Data Processing; however, she was far from finished with her educational goals. She said QCC had given her the confidence to believe she could succeed in education, enabling her to continue on and earn her Bachelor Degree in Business Administration from Lesley College. She attended Lesley in the evenings, while working days at Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).

After graduating from Lesley College, Ms. Provencher landed a job as a business system analyst with Quantum, the company that had bought out DEC. It would be a job she would hold for 18 years until everyone in her department was let go due to downsizing.

“Now I’m thinking that I’m in my 50s and who is going to hire an older woman. I worked at Walmart for a while, then sent my resume into CMRPC and got hired as an administrative assistant,” she said.

She quickly worked her way to her current position at CMRPC (a position she has held for three years) and has worked for there for over 10 years.

For many, the story might have ended there, but Ms. Provencher’s story is far from ordinary. Along the way she met her husband, bought property, and started Little Bit Farm and Apiary. In 1998, she also began beekeeping after ordering her first packet of bees for her husband’s birthday. Today, she sells honey, makes beeswax candles, lip balm and, when asked, teaches beekeeping to students in Sudbury. She also teaches gardening and has gone to senior centers and had classes at the farm.

In her “spare” time she is a Leicester selectman, a position she has held since 2005. She also spent 18 years on the town’s Conservation Board.

When asked how she could do everything she does, her answer is simple.

“If you have a will you can do it. Single moms need to know that their life is not just stuck. It’s hard, I’m not going to lie, but they need to think, ‘If she can do it, why can’t I?’ You have got to get your foot in the door and you have to keep going. I kept going,” she said, adding, “QCC gave me that confidence.”

  • George I. Alden Library
  • George I. Alden Library on third floor of the Harrington Learning Center.
  • QCC librarians
November, 2018

If you haven’t checked out Quinsigamond Community College’s George I. Alden Library recently, or if you’ve never stopped by, you just might be in for a pleasant surprise. The Alden Library recently relocated all its resources to the third floor of the Harrington Center, making access to the thousands of print and online resources, as well as study areas and computers all in one centralized location...

More...

If you haven’t checked out Quinsigamond Community College’s George I. Alden Library recently, or if you’ve never stopped by, you just might be in for a pleasant surprise. The Alden Library recently relocated all its resources to the third floor of the Harrington Center, making access to the thousands of print and online resources, as well as study areas and computers all in one centralized location. Dean for Library and Academic Support Services Andrea MacRitchie said they had been preparing for a new library, and while the move was not entirely expected, it came at a time when they had already streamlined and weeded out the college’s extensive collection as curriculum changed.

“We got rid of books that were totally outdated or had been loved to death and needed to be replaced. Our collection totaled approximately 60,000 and we got rid of about 12,000.  We compressed and updated the collection,” she said, adding that the purged books were offered to other state institutions or recycled.

In addition to the revised collection, there are seven new student areas, a computer room and reference desk. Individual study areas and group study rooms are also available. Students can reserve a room (in two hour increments) and can check out laptops for free (in two-hour increments) at the circulation desk (laptops cannot be removed from the library). An expansive computer lab is also located in the library.

“Facilities were with us every step of the way helping with the new student area and circulation desk,” Ms. MacRitchie said. “They’ve helped us give the students a nice, welcoming place. We also have some great artwork and paintings on loan. The students love the environment that the paintings create. It’s also a bonus for us.”

One of the highlights of the library and one that the staff is particularly proud of is a new library consortium. QCC is a founding member of the new library network called HELM (Higher Education Libraries of Massachusetts).  QCC has joined with five other community colleges and the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts to create HELM, which will focus exclusively on the needs of academic libraries.

“The (community college) directors got together to form our own consortium that is for our students,” Ms. MacRitchie said.

HELM is designed to support student and faculty research with a networked library collection that will provide more scholarly materials and a library catalog that integrates course reserves and e-resources in a more user-friendly way. In addition to the HELM, QCC is a member of ARC (the Academic and Research Collaborative). ARC is made up of academic, public, and special research libraries in the Worcester area that work together, sharing resources and services. Institutions that are members of ARC offer students, faculty and staff cross-borrowing cards, delivery of books from other ARC member libraries to onsite use of electronic resources. QCC’s library also is part of the Commonwealth Catalog, which extends the college’s library reach to all participating libraries throughout Massachusetts. This gives the QCC community the most up-to-date comprehensive resources designed for today’s higher education student.

Faculty have been continuously scheduling library instruction sessions for their classes to help students effectively utilize all the services available to them at the library. Close to 300 FYE (First Year Experience) students have also already visited the library for a literacy workshop. Librarians Tiger Swan and Cary Morse introduced students to the concept of an academic library and challenged them to consider how they will use library resources and services throughout their QCC studies.

“All students will need to have a literacy skill. It’s one of the college’s 10 general education learning goals,” Ms. MacRitchie added.

QCC also has a library in its Center for Workforce Development and Continuing Education in room 121D.  For more information, visit the Alden Library.

  • From left: PTK students and food pantry volunteers Emma O'Brien, Ashley Forhan and Max German in the new QCC Food Pantry
November, 2018

Quinsigamond Community College’s food pantry has some new digs! The food pantry has relocated to the ground floor, Room B63, of the Administration Building on the college’s main campus at 670 West Boylston Street, Worcester. The new location houses the food pantry, as well as a resource center for students, which is anticipated to be opened in early Spring 2019.

“We are working on building...

More...

Quinsigamond Community College’s food pantry has some new digs! The food pantry has relocated to the ground floor, Room B63, of the Administration Building on the college’s main campus at 670 West Boylston Street, Worcester. The new location houses the food pantry, as well as a resource center for students, which is anticipated to be opened in early Spring 2019.

“We are working on building partnerships with the community,” said QCC Dean of Students Theresa Vecchio, in regards to the resource center.

Those partnerships and resources will include such services as assistance with homelessness, debt reduction, legal assistance and financial literacy.

Regular hours for the food pantry are Monday 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., Tuesday 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., Wednesday 4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., Thursday 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., and Fridays 8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

During the month of December, the food pantry will have the following adjusted hours:

Dec. 10 - Dec. 14: 

  • Mon.    2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • Tues.   8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
  • Wed.   4:00 p.m. -   7:00 p.m.
  • Thurs. 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • Fri:      11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m

Dec. 17 - Dec. 21: 

  • Mon.    2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • Tues.   8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
  • Wed.   4:00 p.m. -   7:00 p.m.
  • Thurs. 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
  • Fri:      8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Regular hours for the food pantry are Monday 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., Tuesday 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., Wednesday 4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., Thursday 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., and Fridays 8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

If you are (or know) a student, faculty or staff member in need, please come to the food pantry for assistance. All information is kept confidential.

The food pantry is always accepting monetary gifts and in-kind donations of non-perishable food items. Donations may be dropped off in the donation box outside of the food pantry (Room B63, Admin Building, West Boylston Street Campus, Worcester).

Items in high demand include:

  • Cans of tuna
  • Cans of chicken
  • Spaghetti sauce
  • Peanut Butter
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Cans of ravioli/Spaghettios
  • Boxes of cereal
  • Instant oatmeal (individual packets)

 If you need assistance outside of the food pantry hours listed or you have questions about the food pantry, call 508.854.7403 or email foodpantry [at] qcc.mass.edu .

  • From left: Stuff-A-Cruiser helpersnursing student Amanda Wysote nursing student Victoria (Tory) Shultz
  • Stuff-A-Cruiser at Healthcare and Workforce Development Center
November, 2018

The "Stuff-A-Cruiser" event has become an annual tradition at Quinsigamond Community College. It's an outdoor gathering with hot chocolate, a cruiser, a “Blue Santa”... and the simple joy of giving! The QCC Police Department is inviting students, faculty, staff and the general public to bring new, unwrapped toys to help stuff the cruiser and spread holiday cheer to families in need...

More...

The "Stuff-A-Cruiser" event has become an annual tradition at Quinsigamond Community College. It's an outdoor gathering with hot chocolate, a cruiser, a “Blue Santa”... and the simple joy of giving! The QCC Police Department is inviting students, faculty, staff and the general public to bring new, unwrapped toys to help stuff the cruiser and spread holiday cheer to families in need.

The Stuff-A-Cruiser event works in tandem with the Feed-A-Family program. Feed-A-Family helps provide holiday meals to those in need within the QCC Family. With these two programs working together, we're able to provide a wonderful gift for the complete holiday experience for families and children who may otherwise go without during the holiday season.  

Each year, the goal is to provide toys and food for 100 families.The QCC Police Department works closely with Counseling Services and Phi Theta Kappa to make this happen, however, it takes the entire QCC community to make it happen.  

If you would like to drop off a new, unwrapped toy, gift card or movie tickets you can find a cruiser and “Blue Santa” at:

  • Healthcare and Workforce Development Center Lobby on Tuesday, December 4 from 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
  • Main Campus (Flag Poles) Wednesday, December 5 from 10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m. 
  • Southbridge Campus (Front Lobby) Thursday, December 6 from 10:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.

For more information on Feed-A-Family, please contact twells [at] qcc.mass.edu.

  • WCU President & CEO Karen Duffy
  • Karen Duffy & Vaughn Lee
November, 2018

Personal money management is an integral part of being successful in the world, and no one understands that better than CEO and President of Worcester Credit Union (WCU) Karen Duffy, a 25 year veteran of the credit union. On November 15, Ms. Duffy presented a talk on personal money management to QCC students. The event was hosted by QCC’s Business Administration department.

QCC Professor of...

More...

Personal money management is an integral part of being successful in the world, and no one understands that better than CEO and President of Worcester Credit Union (WCU) Karen Duffy, a 25 year veteran of the credit union. On November 15, Ms. Duffy presented a talk on personal money management to QCC students. The event was hosted by QCC’s Business Administration department.

QCC Professor of Business Administration Jean McLean said the college “...was honored to have Karen Duffy address our business students on the topic of personal money management. Business Transfer student Vaughn Lee, who serves with me on the Student Success Committee, approached me last month and expressed interest in having a speaker come to campus to talk about financial literacy. I immediately thought of Karen, who gave an excellent presentation here about five years ago.”.

Ms. Duffy spoke to students about having financial control, budget saving tips, technology tools in online banking, mobile banking, Apple Pay, and popmoney services such as Zelle and Venmo, which enables individuals to send and receive payments electronically. She discussed ways to avoid overdraft fees by using services available at your credit union or bank, the signs of financial distress and debit vs. credit. She told those in attendance to not be afraid to ask questions because your money matters!

"The goal of developing personal money management skills is to provide a basic understanding of your finances and the accounts you use to pay bills and accumulate savings so that you can be self-sufficient," Ms. Duffy said."Everyone can and should have checking and savings accounts free of monthly service charges – you don’t need hundreds or thousands of dollars on deposit. Look to your local institutions and you’ll find them."

“Karen had a lot of knowledge to impart to students - everything from setting up a budget to using credit wisely. She is also a champion of working women and a member of the Women's Political Caucus,” Professor McLean added.

“Of the 75 people who listened and learned about personal money management, Karen Duffy’s impact in advocating financial literacy education was extensive. That's the reason why I coordinated this event to help people of the community better understand their financial values and goals,” said Mr. Lee. “I want to thank Professor McLean, Dean of School of Business, Engineering, and Technology Betty Lauer, and Career Development Counselor Nicole Wheeler for their support of this event.”

 

  • Police Academy students make donation to the QCC Food Pantry
November, 2018

As the only community college in Massachusetts running its own police academy, QCC’s 50 inaugural police academy students are already making an impression on the Commonwealth. The students recently made an impact at the college with a group donation to QCC’s Food Pantry. The idea was presented to them by Program Coordinator Detective Sergeant Joseph Cecchi, who said  the idea was...

More...

As the only community college in Massachusetts running its own police academy, QCC’s 50 inaugural police academy students are already making an impression on the Commonwealth. The students recently made an impact at the college with a group donation to QCC’s Food Pantry. The idea was presented to them by Program Coordinator Detective Sergeant Joseph Cecchi, who said  the idea was met with great enthusiasm by the students. The college opened the QCC Food Pantry in July to address food insecurities on campus after studies showed there was a extensive need.

“I have known Bonnie Coleman (Phi Theta Kappa Advisor) and Ashley Forhan (Phi Theta Kappa Student and Food Pantry Manager) for many years now. They discussed the need for support pertaining to the QCC Food Pantry. I offered the idea of having the QCC Police Academy recruits donate on a voluntary basis. The Massachusetts Police Training Committee and police academies across the state encourage student officers to give back to the community,” Sgt. Cecchi said.

Graduates of the QCC Police Academy are eligible to be hired by municipal police in a part-time reserve/intermittent capacity and will exercise police powers as a police officer. Giving back to the communities they may serve one day is an important part of police work, noted Sgt. Cecchi. At the academy, the student officers are learning that one of the foundational principles of the policing profession is to foster trust and build strong relationships in the communities they will one day serve, through positive interactions.

“The generosity of the police academy was absolutely breathtaking. To see my fellow students come together to donate to the food pantry was something that will stick with me for the rest of my life. Words cannot describe the happiness that I felt in my heart after receiving this incredible donation,” said QCC Food Pantry Manager Ashley Forhan.

Those interested in making a donation can email the QCC Food Pantry at foodpantry [at] qcc.mass.edu.

  • Native American artifacts were on display in the Harrington Learning Center.
  • A photo of Professor Doe West's grandmother
November, 2018

November is designated National Native American Heritage Month, a time to recognize, reflect and learn about the significant contributions the first Americans made to the establishment and growth of the United States. Native American culture is not homogenous.  Every nation and tribe within the nations are unique, yet they have erroneously been grouped together.

On October 24, QCC's I Stand With...

More...

November is designated National Native American Heritage Month, a time to recognize, reflect and learn about the significant contributions the first Americans made to the establishment and growth of the United States. Native American culture is not homogenous.  Every nation and tribe within the nations are unique, yet they have erroneously been grouped together.

On October 24, QCC's I Stand With Immigrants Day of Action brought together students, faculty and staff as they shared their stories and personal experiences. One of the most captivating stories was given by Professor and Chair of the Human Services Department, Dr. Doe West, who discussed her Native American heritage.

There are few, if any on campus who can speak with more knowledge on this subject than Dr. West, whose grandmother was a Native American. Her grandmother’s heritage was Lenape or Lenni-Lenape (later named Delaware Indians by Europeans). In the 1600s they were loosely organized bands of Native American people practicing small-scale agriculture to augment a largely mobile hunter-gatherer society in the region around the Delaware River, the lower Hudson River, and western Long Island. 

 “It was important when we were having the conversation about the governmental treatment of immigrants and those deemed ‘the other’ to remember Native Americans experienced such issues as the break-up of families and violence created by fear and prejudice,” Dr. West said.

Dr. West talked about the shame associated with what happened to Native Americans, noting how an entire culture was ravaged by diseases such as small pox and measles that were brought with them from other lands. The Native Americans were also virtually wiped out by the European settlers due to the lust and greed of wanting more and more land. 

Dr. West told the story of her grandmother who was taken from her tribe by missionaries at the age of 8 after her parents died to “save her” from the “savages.” Her grandmother was taken to a white woman’s house in New York where she became a slave for the family working in the kitchen.

“They called me ‘the girl,’ but I knew what I was; I was the slave and that’s how I was treated,” Dr. West said her grandmother told her. By the age of 11 her grandmother had escaped the home after cultivating a relationship with the owner of a hat factory and worked nights cleaning the factory in exchange for being allowed to sleep in a storage room.  Child labor issues allowed her that terrible option.

By age 12, she had caught the eye of Dr. West’s soon to be grandfather, the son of a farmer and local butcher, who saw her at a grange (community) dance. Her grandfather’s parents were horrified that their son would want to be with an Indian woman; however, since her grandmother was light-skinned they agreed to allow them to be together if she dressed, talked and acted like a white woman and renounced her heritage. 

It wasn’t until Dr. West was 8 years old that she learned of her heritage from her grandmother, who recognized something within her spirit and felt she was to be taught the ways of her people, she said.  It remained something private between them as long as she lived with the family due to prejudice that remained in that area.  Dr. West finally attended her first pow-wow when she entered college and her eyes were opened further to the plight of Native Americans; as well as the beauty and importance of her heritage and that of all tribal nations.

“Seventy years ago Native Americans could not vote,” she said, adding that many on the reservation today only have post office boxes and so a law was developed that made it necessary to have a street address in order to vote. “It was a next clear denial of rights,” she said.

Dr. West said that today the Native Americans are finding new strength and community support as others add their voice to theirs in such environmental struggles as Standing Rock. 

A historic milestone you will see celebrated by a sign on her wall was the recent election of two Native American women, Sharice Davids and Deb Haaland into Congress.

But it is a sign on her door says it all.  “If you’re an American your heritage is Native American, slave, refugee or immigrant that’s it.”

  • Interactive media photos
November, 2018

The world is changing at a rapid pace and interactive media is leading the way. No one knows this better than the folks in Quinsigamond Community College’s Interactive Media program, formerly known as the Applied Arts program. In 1993, QCC established the Applied Arts program, one of the first multi-faceted computer based programs designated for students seeking a design...

More...

The world is changing at a rapid pace and interactive media is leading the way. No one knows this better than the folks in Quinsigamond Community College’s Interactive Media program, formerly known as the Applied Arts program. In 1993, QCC established the Applied Arts program, one of the first multi-faceted computer based programs designated for students seeking a design career in digital media in the region. The program focused on digital design and photography. In 2000-2001, the program expanded to include two labs that seat 40 students. In 2016, the program changed its name to Interactive Media. According to Interactive Media Professor Mary Valentine, the name change (and adjusted curriculum) reflected the ever changing trends within the industry.

"Everything is changing so rapidly and the field is widening," she said, adding that the need to be current with technology is extremely important so that students can transfer to four year institutions or enter the workforce seamlessly.

The success of the Interactive Media program is demonstrated by the graduates of the program, who have gone on to four year institutions such as the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Lesley University and the University of Massachusetts. Ms. Valentine said many of the students have made an indelible impression in a variety of industries across the interactive media platform.

“We give them a good base, then they go into a more specific major when they transfer,” Ms. Valentine said. “Most of our former students are in the (interactive media) industry. They give us feedback as well as do guest demonstration and lectures.”

In May of this year, QCC students Daniael Alicia, Grit Jana and Nicholas Tisdale had their artwork selected to hang in the State House as part of a Worcester-area college exposition hosted by Senator Michael Moore. Five students' artwork was chosen from hundreds submissions by Worcester Consortium colleges.

“Each year since this began QCC has been well-represented,” Ms. Valentine added.

Gaming Program

Interactive Media Professors George Fitch and Mary Valentine have continued to stay abreast of changing technologies, extensively evaluating the curriculum every three years. In 2015, the college expanded its Interactive Media program to include gaming.

Learning Manager Nathaniel “Nate” Mello, a graduate of Becker College’s gaming program, was hired to run the program. While still in its infancy stages, QCC’s gaming program has already graduated nine students, all of whom have either gone on to four year institutions or directly entered the gaming workforce. This year the gaming program has almost doubled in size and appears to only be growing.

In April, QCC students Nicholas Tisdale and Nicholas Dykers participated in the New England Student Game Design Showcase (NESGDS), hosted by Microsoft. The students received first place in the Best Game Play category for their submission, Data Strain.  Students from over 21 New England colleges and universities participated in the event.

“Gaming requires both the artistic and technical side,” Ms. Valentine said, making it an attractive program for students.

QCC has an articulation agreement with Becker College for digital design and game design, enabling eligible students to easily transfer.

“We are also working on articulation agreements with Lesley University and Worcester Polytechnic Institute,” Ms. Valentine said.

Visit Interactive Media to learn more about the program.

  • Author Nina MacLaughlin
  • English Professor John Stazinski and Nina MacLaughlin
November, 2018

It’s not often that a speaker is so captivating that an hour long talk feels like it was a minute long; however, that seemed to be the case earlier this month when author Nina MacLaughlin came to Quinsigamond Community College and discussed her book, Hammer Head: The Making of a Carpenter.

“Each fall the QCC English Department chooses a single book and encourages faculty in different...

More...

It’s not often that a speaker is so captivating that an hour long talk feels like it was a minute long; however, that seemed to be the case earlier this month when author Nina MacLaughlin came to Quinsigamond Community College and discussed her book, Hammer Head: The Making of a Carpenter.

“Each fall the QCC English Department chooses a single book and encourages faculty in different disciplines to use the book in their classes, and then invites the author to speak on campus. In the past we’ve had Andre Dubus, Junot Diaz, Edwidge Danticat, and Richard Blanco,” said English Professor John Stazinski.

The book chosen, Hammer Head: The Making of a Carpenter, details Ms. MacLaughlin’s journey of quitting her desk job as an editor of the Boston Phoenix and completely changing careers and becoming a carpenter after answering a blind ad for a carpenter’s assistant.

She told students, faculty and staff about her trepidation after getting the job and asking herself, “What have I done? I had no experience at all.”

Ms. MacLaughlin said she couldn’t even read a tape measure and discussed how the carpenter, “Mary” who hired her, was extremely patient and taught her the importance of making mistakes and learning from them.  Currently, she said she is doing less carpentry (as Mary has been diagnosed with emphysema); working on making wooden spoons, and has written another book that will come out soon.

After the discussion Ms. MacLaughlin opened it up to questions, which ranged the gamut from questions about what inspired her to write her book; what were her goals for the future, to asking her about how Mary was doing.

“It was such a pleasure coming to speak at QCC earlier this month. Talking to some friends later that afternoon, I told them how I'd been asked questions I'd never been asked before, and what fresh, good, curious questions they were. It's such an honor being asked questions that show that the person has read the work, paid attention to it, has curiosity about it, and that was definitely the case that day,” Ms. MacLaughlin said.

She added that some of the questions even took her a little off guard.

What would she have done if she hadn't answered the craigslist ad for a carpenter's assistant ?

Had her relationship with her dad changed after she became a carpenter and wrote a book?

“The students' questions were impressive, and also really fun to answer, from what I'd be doing if I hadn't gotten the carpentry job, to what the future of synthetic wood might be, to how the book changed my relationship with my dad. I'm grateful for the range and engagement, and for the people interacting with the book in such a way,” she said. “I keep coming back to the word honor. It's also really neat to see a bunch of hands shoot up to ask questions --- and a bummer not to be able to answer them all!”

Ms. MacLaughlin said that after the event a few people got in touch with her, telling their own stories of changing paths.

“I drove back to Cambridge that day feeling really, really lucky,” she added. 

  • A November Day at QCC
November, 2018

Friday, December 7: 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. The Phi Theta Kappa Alpha Zeta Theta Chapter will be hosting a Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social in Room 107A. Scott Olson will provide musical entertainment and light refreshments will be served.

Monday, December 10 & Tuesday, December 11: Auditions for the spring play, Columbinus (a docu-drama ...

More...

Friday, December 7: 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. The Phi Theta Kappa Alpha Zeta Theta Chapter will be hosting a Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social in Room 107A. Scott Olson will provide musical entertainment and light refreshments will be served.

Monday, December 10 & Tuesday, December 11: Auditions for the spring play, Columbinus (a docu-drama with a focus on the tragic Columbine shooting) from 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. in the Hebert Auditorium. Be prepared to read from the script. These auditions are open to everyone at QCC. 

Tuesday, December 25 - Tuesday, January 1: The college will be closed for its annual Winter Break and will reopen on January 2. May you have a happy and healthy holiday season and a Happy New Year! 

December Spotlight: December 4 - 6:  Stuff-A-Cruiser event – The QCC Police Department is hosting this annual event to help support the Feed-a-Family Program. Faculty, staff and students are asked to bring an unwrapped toy, gift card or movie tickets for a Feed-A-Family child. Please take a moment to join the QCC Police and their “helpers” for some hot cocoa as a thank you for your donation.

Event Times and locations:

  • Tuesday, December 4:  10::00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. in the lobby of the QCC Healthcare and Workforce Development Center, 25 Federal Street, Worcester.
  • Wednesday, December 5: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the flagpoles on QCC’s main campus, 670 West Boylston Street, Worcester.
  • Thursday, December 6: 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. in the front lobby of QCC Southbridge, 5 Optical Drive, Southbridge.

Toys and donations will also be accepted on QCC’s main campus in 162A, the Fuller Student Center, and at the QCC Campus Police, Room 136 in the Athletic Center until December 8.

  • Veterans Day Parade
  • Army Specialist Manny Antwi represented Veteran Affairs at the Military Gala held at Vets Inc. in Worcester.
  • Mark Blease helps serve breakfast to QCC veterans.
  • QCC student veteran Desiree Vinson helps serve lunch to veterans.
November, 2018

On the day of November 11, 1919, the 28th U.S. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed an Armistice Day (today known as Veterans Day) to honor all American veterans who have served in the military of the United States. This year Veterans Day held an added significance as it was the centennial commemoration of the ending of World War I. QCC veterans, their families and friends proudly marched in Worcester’s annual...

More...

On the day of November 11, 1919, the 28th U.S. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed an Armistice Day (today known as Veterans Day) to honor all American veterans who have served in the military of the United States. This year Veterans Day held an added significance as it was the centennial commemoration of the ending of World War I. QCC veterans, their families and friends proudly marched in Worcester’s annual Veterans Day Parade, with QCC’s President, Dr. Luis Pedraja also taking part in the occasion. QCC Veteran Affairs also honored the college’s veterans during the week preceding Veterans Day by providing both breakfast and lunch each day.

Until December 10, the Veteran Affairs office will be collecting donations in order to send holiday care packages, cards and letters to service men and women currently deployed in Afghanistan and local veteran hospitals.  Requested donations include:

  • Cards
  • Candy
  • Magazines
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Toothbrushes
  • Toothpaste
  • Dental Floss
  • Eye Drops
  • Lip Balm
  • Body Lotions
  • Holiday Decorations
  • Sticky Pads
  • Beef Jerky
  • Pens

Donations can be dropped off in the Veteran Affairs Office, Room 258A or at the security desk in the HealthCare and Workforce Development Center, 25 Federal Street, Worcester.

  • Emerson College Assistant Director Nicholas Washburn gets into the spirit of the QCC Transfer Fair held on Halloween.
  • Four Year college and university staff had a bit of fun during QCC's bi-annual Transfer Fair.
  • The University of Maine was represented by Assistant Director Kylen Donovan.
  • QCC Transfer Counselor Beth Fullerton
  • Students at the Transfer Fair
November, 2018

At Quinsigamond Community College close to 50 percent of students transfer to other institutions after graduating, making the college’s bi-annual Transfer Fair so important to students. On October 31, students were given the chance to meet with over 30 colleges and universities at the QCC Fall Transfer Fair, held in the Harrington Learning Center.

QCC has a variety of Transfer Agreements with numerous...

More...

At Quinsigamond Community College close to 50 percent of students transfer to other institutions after graduating, making the college’s bi-annual Transfer Fair so important to students. On October 31, students were given the chance to meet with over 30 colleges and universities at the QCC Fall Transfer Fair, held in the Harrington Learning Center.

QCC has a variety of Transfer Agreements with numerous four-year institutions through the state, from the statewide MassTransfer program, which offers guarantees of admission at Massachusetts state universities and UMass campuses to a variety of articulation agreements with private colleges and universities across New England. Through these different agreements, QCC graduates can transfer into a range of academic programs and can advance toward their four-year degrees more easily, quickly, and affordably.

Colleges and universities in attendance included:

  • Anna Maria College
  • Assumption College
  • Bay Path University
  • Becker College
  • Bentley University
  • Boston University
  • Bridgewater State University
  • Bryant University
  • Emerson College
  • Fitchburg State University
  • Framingham State University
  • Johnson & Wales University
  • Lesley University
  • Mass College of Art & Design
  • Mass College of Liberal Arts
  • Mass College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences
  • Mass Maritime Academy
  • NE Institute of Technology
  • Nichols College
  • Northeastern University
  • Plymouth State University
  • Providence College
  • Salem State University
  • Springfield College
  • St. Anselm College
  • Suffolk University
  • Northeastern University
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Maine
  • University of New England
  • UMASS-Amherst
  • UMASS-Boston
  • UMASS-Dartmouth
  • UMASS-Lowell
  • Westfield State University
  • Worcester State University
  • Western New England University
  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute

For questions, email QCC Transfer Services at transfer [at] qcc.mass.edu or call 508.854.4404.

  • Dr Luis Pedraja and Coordinator of Disability Services Joanne Sharac
  • QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja and Professor of Nursing Ellen Vangel-Brousseau
  • QCC President Luis Pedraja and Raymond Wisniewski
November, 2018

On November 26, Quinsigamond Community College faculty and staff honored three of their own during a reception to celebrate the awarding of the Citation for Outstanding Performance Awards.

Honored this year were:

Professor of Nursing Ellen Vangel-Brousseau, who retired from QCC in September 2018 after 35 years of service to the college.  Professor Vangel-Brousseau developed...

More...

On November 26, Quinsigamond Community College faculty and staff honored three of their own during a reception to celebrate the awarding of the Citation for Outstanding Performance Awards.

Honored this year were:

Professor of Nursing Ellen Vangel-Brousseau, who retired from QCC in September 2018 after 35 years of service to the college.  Professor Vangel-Brousseau developed and promoted the college’s Nurse Education program. She established a Registered Nurse program for students with a baccalaureate degree in another area, working hard to ensure the program’s continued success.

Coordinator of Disability Services Joanne Sharac is one of the original founders who worked on providing services on campus for students with psychological disabilities, through writing and administering a grant from the Department of Mental Health. She has dedicated her 29 year career at QCC to working as a coordinator for students with emotional and psychological disabilities.

“Joanne’s depth of knowledge of the mental health field and best practices have benefitted our students, college and the greater community,” said QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja.

Rounding out the honorees is Raymond Wisniewski, Director/Systems Administrator for Academic and Online Applications. In Mr. Wisniewski’s 13 years of service to the college, he has spearheaded a $600,000 upgrade to the computer classrooms and took on systems administration functions for Blackboard and Starfish.

“I want to thank each of you for being such an integral part of the QCC community and for your years of service,” Dr. Pedraja said.

  • No Shave Nov. Participants
November, 2018

During the month of November, thousands of people across the country partook in what is now commonly referred to as No-Shave November. During the month of November participants forgo shaving and grooming in order to raise awareness of men’s health issues, such as cancer.

This is the second year that Quinsigamond Community College Campus Police have participated. This year students from the QCC...

More...

During the month of November, thousands of people across the country partook in what is now commonly referred to as No-Shave November. During the month of November participants forgo shaving and grooming in order to raise awareness of men’s health issues, such as cancer.

This is the second year that Quinsigamond Community College Campus Police have participated. This year students from the QCC Police Academy also took part in the event along with many QCC police officers.

“I thank the QCC police officers, academy students and community members for their support in the No Shave-November event. We will support this endeavor again next year," said Chief of Police Kevin Ritacco.

  • Students in Robbin Miller's class meet with Congressman James McGovern
November, 2018

Prior to mid-term elections, Congressman James “Jim” McGovern stopped by Adjunct Faculty Robbin Miller’s U.S. Government class on QCC’s main campus. The Congressman answered questions from the students, and discussed a myriad of items such as our given rights by the Constitution, student loans to the current climate in Washington. 

More...

Prior to mid-term elections, Congressman James “Jim” McGovern stopped by Adjunct Faculty Robbin Miller’s U.S. Government class on QCC’s main campus. The Congressman answered questions from the students, and discussed a myriad of items such as our given rights by the Constitution, student loans to the current climate in Washington. 

  • Winter Coat Drive
November, 2018

As the temperature plummets and the snow begins to fall, staff and faculty at Quinsigamond Community College are gearing up to help take the chill out of the winter for those in need.

The QCC Early Childhood Education Club is continuing to collect donations of new or gently used winter coats and accessories for QCC Students and their children until December 7.  Donation boxes are located at the Children...

More...

As the temperature plummets and the snow begins to fall, staff and faculty at Quinsigamond Community College are gearing up to help take the chill out of the winter for those in need.

The QCC Early Childhood Education Club is continuing to collect donations of new or gently used winter coats and accessories for QCC Students and their children until December 7.  Donation boxes are located at the Children Study Center on the second floor of the Harrington Learning Center; in Room 348A in the Administration building, as well as the Athletic Center and the President’s Office (Room 132A).  Requested jacket sizes include children/youth sizes 4-8 and all adult sizes and suggested boot sizes include children/youth sizes 10-4 and all adult sizes. For questions contact Karen O’Neill, Early Childhood Education Club Advisor at Koneill [at] qcc.mass.edu.

The college is also holding a Blanket Drive for families and individuals the Worcester community. Your donation of a new or gently used blanket can be dropped off in Room B58A in the Administration building may be dropped off until December 14. For questions, contact ltino [at] qcc.mass.edu

  • The Wyvern was one of the area college mascots that attended College Night at the DCU Center.
  • 018 All Region XXI award recipients
November, 2018

Women's Soccer

The QCC women’s soccer team completed its 2018 season with much excitement, earning its first win this season. The team held its end of the year awards dinner to honor the entire team and also recognize the 2018 All Region XXI award recipients that included:              ...

More...

Women's Soccer

The QCC women’s soccer team completed its 2018 season with much excitement, earning its first win this season. The team held its end of the year awards dinner to honor the entire team and also recognize the 2018 All Region XXI award recipients that included:              

  • First team - Cherie Engman
  • Second team -  Brittney Kelley
  • Honorable Mention- Madison Lloyd, Haley Gordon, Sarah Crouch

"The women’s soccer team had another progressive season. The team’s great attitude and effort lead to the first win in program history. With a solid core of returning players, the 2019 season is looking promising for continued success," said Women's Soccer Coach Josh Cole.

Men's & Women's Basketball 

The Wyvern men’s and women’s basketball season going strong. Both teams are very competitive within the NJCAA conference. If you haven’t had a chance to see a game there’s still time. Visit Women’s Basketball schedule and Men’s Basketball schedule to lean more.

Athletic Center News

The Athletic Center staff is collecting slightly used and clean, winter coats, boots and accessories for QCC students and their children. Please take a moment and think about those less fortunate during the winter months and consider making a donation.

QCC Athletic Center Hours

During the cold winter months it can sometimes be difficult to get outdoors and exercise. QCC’s Athletic Center is there to help take the chill out of your bones and help you work up a healthy sweat. Winter hours are:

  • Monday: 8:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday: 8:00 a.m.- 7:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday: 8:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
  • Thursday: 8:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
  • Friday: 8:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
  • Saturday: 10:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.

For questions email Director of Athletics & Fitness Center lgurnick [at] qcc.mass.edu (Lisa Gurnick) or call 508.854.4582.

  • From left: Students Chloe Current, Vanessa Hanger, Adam Maarij, Katherine Berry and Brien Marsh.
November, 2018

In early November, the Psi Beta & Psychology Club students presented their original research at the New England Psychological Association Conference. Some of the presenting students were QCC alumni who have graduated and are attending a four-year college.

The group will be launching its new study at the start of the spring semester and is looking for new research associates. This is a great opportunity to...

More...

In early November, the Psi Beta & Psychology Club students presented their original research at the New England Psychological Association Conference. Some of the presenting students were QCC alumni who have graduated and are attending a four-year college.

The group will be launching its new study at the start of the spring semester and is looking for new research associates. This is a great opportunity to learn how to do research, and build an academic and professional resume! Students who are interested can contact Professor of Psychology Valerie Clemente, Ed.D. with any questions at vclemente [at] qcc.mass.edu.

November, 2018

November 2018

More...

October, 2018

  • QCC's new Student Success Center is housed in the Harrington Learning Center.
October, 2018

Quinsigamond Community College’s President Dr. Luis G. Pedraja is seeing his vision for 100 percent student success get one step closer to reality, with the awarding of a $2.25 million five-year Title III grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant recognizes the work QCC is doing to increase student persistence and completion from the point of entry to graduation.

“Our...

More...

Quinsigamond Community College’s President Dr. Luis G. Pedraja is seeing his vision for 100 percent student success get one step closer to reality, with the awarding of a $2.25 million five-year Title III grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The grant recognizes the work QCC is doing to increase student persistence and completion from the point of entry to graduation.

“Our mission as a higher education institution is to foster an environment that provides optimum learning experiences for all of our students. We have extensively improved our student experience support structure and become more embedded in the communities we serve. This funding will enable us to turbo-charge our initiatives to get to our ultimate goal,” he said.

An estimated 78 percent of QCC graduates stay within the region, making QCC a key player in supporting economic development in its service area. For over 50 years, QCC has worked to align its programs and services with the needs of a large, industrial community that has a substantial population of lower income, at-risk students. QCC recognized that in order to help students complete college, it must develop a number of interventions and initiatives at key junctures.

Those initiatives include a comprehensive orientation and first year experience program, which the college rolled out this fall. Studies have shown students to be more successful through early identification of academic and career goals, assessment of student needs, creation of realistic educational plans and close monitoring and intervention throughout a student’s first-year experience.  

QCC has bolstered its wrap-around support services, streamlining them into one central location, the Student Success Center. In addition, the college has improved upon its digital assets, building upon technology-driven initiatives in teaching and learning. An advising and retention software program was implemented that provides innovative solutions for student success, including personalized advising options, a student tracking module and communication system. QCC has also worked to become more embedded within the communities it serves through the implementation of Community Learning Hubs. To date three learning hubs have been opened in the City of Worcester. This fall a redesigned mentoring program has brought in mentors from area communities to assist students through decisions and situations they may encounter in their collegiate and life journeys.

“Our goal is to attain 100 percent student success and we will not rest until we have reached that goal,” President Pedraja said.

  • Gabe Santner Director of Mentoring for Perkins Programs
  • QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja discusses the merits of mentoring.
  • Abbvie BioresearchTraining Manager John Sauers
  • Former mentee turned mentor Geovanni Cruz
October, 2018

Giovanni Cruz stated it best when he described QCC’s mentoring program as, “people change people.” A former QCC mentee, Mr. Cruz said it was through mentors both past and present that have helped him on his journey; a journey that led him to his current job as the AmeriCorps vista for the QCC mentoring program.

A total of 115 mentors that included community partners,...

More...

Giovanni Cruz stated it best when he described QCC’s mentoring program as, “people change people.” A former QCC mentee, Mr. Cruz said it was through mentors both past and present that have helped him on his journey; a journey that led him to his current job as the AmeriCorps vista for the QCC mentoring program.

A total of 115 mentors that included community partners, faculty staff and alumni and 190 mentees were part of the inaugural mentoring program's kick-off event on October 11 at QCC’s Hebert Auditorium. Mentors and mentees listened to former mentors and mentees before a breakout session to meet their new mentor/mentee.

“You, the mentors, made a commitment to assist our students in achieving their academic and professional goals,” said QCC Dean of Students Theresa Vecchio. “Mentees made a commitment to themselves to achieve their goals.”

QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja told of his own personal experiences both as a mentee and mentor and how powerful they were for him.

“I believe in the power of mentorship. I believe that mentors are essential,” he said. “It takes a community to help a college student succeed, especially a first-generation college student.”

One such community partner that has made a big impact on the new mentoring program is Abbvie Bioresearch Center in Worcester. Training Manager John Sauers expounded on the company’s relationship with QCC over the years, from assisting in the development of a successful course to helping with the college’s current mentoring program.

“I presented a poster on QCC’s mentoring program at our networking open house and 35 people were interested,” he said, adding that currently 17 fthe company have signed up to be mentors.

He said this was the power of mentoring.

“This illustrated people who love what they do and are willing to share that with others. I really feel mentoring is connecting the dots forward,” Mr. Sauers said.

QCC Dean of Compliance Liz Woods said mentoring brings as much to the mentors as it does the mentees.

“For me I know I’ve shared in the success of an exam; joy of a job search; the birth of a child…even a winning soccer season,” she said. “We rise by lifting others, assisting that other person in meeting their goals no matter what they are.”

The new QCC mentoring program is so successful already there is a waiting list of 50 students.

“We’re just starting and my hope is one day everyone who wants a mentor has one,” Dr. Pedraja said. “Tell people at your work, in your community, alums and at churches. It does take a community to help our students and by working together as a community you are all part of the QCC family and family sticks together and supports each other.”

Visit QCC mentoring to learn more about the program.

  • Visit GiveCampus.com on November 13
October, 2018

Feeding those in need within the QCC community is the premise and mission of Quinsigamond Community College’s food pantry. An April 2018 study by the Wisconsin HOPE Lab found that 49 percent of QCC students had low to very low food security, prompting QCC to establish a food pantry to help combat hunger on campus. What began as a small operation in the summer, has ramped up this Fall. Today the food...

More...

Feeding those in need within the QCC community is the premise and mission of Quinsigamond Community College’s food pantry. An April 2018 study by the Wisconsin HOPE Lab found that 49 percent of QCC students had low to very low food security, prompting QCC to establish a food pantry to help combat hunger on campus. What began as a small operation in the summer, has ramped up this Fall. Today the food pantry is consistently feeding well over 150 students and the need to keep the pantry up and running is greater than ever.

Already the food pantry has become a staple at the college; however, the ability to keep it running effectively requires funding and staffing. To that end, the college is holding a fundraising crowdsourcing event beginning on November 13, geared to raising funds to help sustain the food pantry in the months to come.

“We found there is a real need for this food pantry and we want to ensure that we can fill this need now and in the future,” said QCC President Luis Pedraja. “We never want to turn away anyone in our QCC family who is hungry because we don’t have enough food. On November 13, we ask you to visit GiveCampus.com and help us reach our goal of $10,000, to help in our battle against food insecurity."

The food pantry has already outgrown its current location (Room 351A in the Administration Building on the college’s main campus at 670 West Boylston Street, Worcester) due to its growing demand. In the next couple of weeks the pantry will be moving to a new location in Room B63 of the Administration Building. The new location will house the food pantry, as well as an area where there will be additional resources available for students.

While the college is looking for monetary donations in its upcoming drive, food donations of non-perishable food items are also always welcomed and accepted. Donations may be dropped off in the donation box outside of the food pantry (Room351A).

Items in high demand include:

  • Cans of tuna
  • Cans of chicken
  • Spaghetti sauce
  • Peanut Butter
  • Rice
  • Pasta
  • Macaroni and cheese
  • Cans of ravioli/ spaghettios
  • Boxes of cereal
  • Instant oatmeal (individual packets)

The Food Pantry is open during the Fall 2018 semester on: Monday 2:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., Tuesday 8:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., Wednesday 4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., Thursday 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m., and Fridays 8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. For questions, email foodpantry [at] qcc.mass.edu  .

 

  • Officials at Early College roundtable discussion.
  • Worcester high school students discuss the Early College program.
  • Participants in the Early College Roundtable discussion.
October, 2018

Three Worcester area high school students discussed the state’s early college program in a no-holds barred roundtable discussion with state and local officials at Quinsigamond Community College (QCC) on October 9. Senator Michael O. Moore, Massachusetts Commissioner of Higher Carlos E. Santiago, QCC President Luis G. Pedraja, Worcester State University (WSU) President Barry M. Maloney, and...

More...

Three Worcester area high school students discussed the state’s early college program in a no-holds barred roundtable discussion with state and local officials at Quinsigamond Community College (QCC) on October 9. Senator Michael O. Moore, Massachusetts Commissioner of Higher Carlos E. Santiago, QCC President Luis G. Pedraja, Worcester State University (WSU) President Barry M. Maloney, and Superintendent of Worcester Public Schools Maureen F. Binienda discussed the new early college program with three students, who are all part of Worcester’s early college pilot program.

“I see this program as a philosophy of change where every student has access to college,” Senator Moore said. “In fifteen to 20 years we’ll look back and see that Worcester started and changed our education system.”

The Early College Program, a collaborative effort with QCC, WSU and the WPS is designed to establish college pathways for high school students in all seven Worcester high schools. It offers high school students the opportunity to earn college credits while still in high school, with a myriad of wraparound services available to them. The program focuses on underrepresented, under-served and first generation-to-college students. The Worcester Early College Program is one of four early college programs statewide that received part of $420,000 in implementation grant funding in July 2018. Senator Moore noted that by the year 2020, 70 percent of jobs will require some sort of college or certificate, making programs such as these so vital.

President Pedraja said he hopes to see a clear pathway that goes through the entire education system, adding that if we do not create this pathway there is going to be a gap in the workforce.

“This is a very unique partnership in the state to create pathways for students to be able to succeed and enter into college with less debt,” President Pedraja said. “I tell students at QCC, ‘you belong here.’ We need to start creating a college mindset with everyone. I think that’s going to be critical and we can grow this program through multiple partnerships.”

All of the students at the roundtable discussion are currently enrolled in a First Year Experience class at QCC. Each of the students told officials of their initial fear and misconception with taking college courses.

“I thought it would be a lot scarier, but it is a lot better than I thought it would be. The professors understand we are high school students and are very accommodating,” said Doherty Memorial High School junior Kwaku Nyarko. “When I actually do start college I’m going to have a head start. I’m not going to flop or have that freshman misstep because I’m already acclimated to what it’s like there.”

The students said one of the key factors of the program was the wrap-around support services they received.

“They provide us with transportation, advisors and mentors to help us be in the program,” said Worcester Technical High School junior Besma Nurhussien.

“The transportation is the best. I couldn’t come here otherwise,” added Worcester Technical High School senior Zachary Le.

At QCC, mentoring plays a very beneficial role in the program. This year the college has expanded its existing mentoring program to include more community mentors, increasing its mentor base for students. This provides a way for QCC students to connect with mentors and build positive relationships that support their college experience.

“Every step of the way they are guiding us so we can focus on the college experience. The mentors are amazing. Everyone wants to see all of us succeed,” Mr. Nyarko said.

Currently there are 120 spots for students in the Early College Program with the goal to increase the number of students in the coming years. WSU President Maloney asked the students how they thought they could increase student interest the program. The resounding answer from the students was more class variety. Mr. Nyarko said that adding more classes will enable students to explore diverse pathway options so they can get a better idea and understanding of what they want to do, without spending thousands.

Senator Moore said the best way for this program to be successful is for the students who are in the pilot program to help promote it.

“We’re looking to you to be the role models and get the word out,” Commissioner Santiago added. “This partnership is really remarkable and just what we need in higher education.”

Families who are interested in learning more about the program should contact Dr. Mary E. Meade-Montaque, WPS Manager for Instruction & School Leadership at MontaqueM [at] worc.k12.ma.us

  • QCC students identify the countries that they came from on a map of the world.
  • From left: QCC students Maria Puello, Thi Thanh Hang Huynh, Roanlis Toribio, Luceily Ortiz and Noor Altahafee.
  • Coordinator of Future Focus Program Gilmarie Vongphakdy locates her country of origin
  • A world map denotes QCC students, faculty and staff countries of origin.
  • QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja stands with Immigrants.
  • Ethic foods were a part of the "I Stand with Immigrants" event.
  • QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja discusses his journey as an immigrant in an interview for Worcester News Tonight.
October, 2018

Quinsigamond Community College joined with over 170 colleges and universities nationwide in the third annual I Stand With Immigrants Day of Action, held on October 24. Close to 100 students attended the event, which featured ethnic food and impassioned stories from QCC students, faculty and staff who discussed their own personal experiences as immigrants. Immigrants play an important role in...

More...

Quinsigamond Community College joined with over 170 colleges and universities nationwide in the third annual I Stand With Immigrants Day of Action, held on October 24. Close to 100 students attended the event, which featured ethnic food and impassioned stories from QCC students, faculty and staff who discussed their own personal experiences as immigrants. Immigrants play an important role in supporting our higher education system and are a part of the rich culture that makes up the student body at QCC.

QCC President Dr. Luis G. Pedraja, who emigrated from Cuba as a young child, told his story of growing up in a low-income Miami neighborhood and the challenges that he faced as an immigrant and first-generation college student. He told of the many restrictive policies in Cuba that drove his family to the U.S. seeking a better life.

“Immigrants have been a strong part of this community. We need to look at the human face of people and our common humanities,” Dr. Pedraja said. “Our diverse stories and history make up the unique and special fabric of the country that we all call ‘home’ today.”

Gilmarie Vongphakdy, QCC’s Coordinator of the Future Focus Program and Director of Community Bridges Deborah Gonzalez, both originally from Puerto Rico, described the challenges and similar prejudices other immigrants faced when coming to the U.S. even though they were also U.S. citizens.

QCC Student Trustee Benjamin Aryeh shared a powerful narrative of his journey to the U.S. from Ghana, telling of his trials of immediately going to work after high school until he found a way to the U.S. and eventually to QCC.

“People need to look at us for the value we bring onboard. We may be different colors but we’re all beautiful people. This is why I stand for immigrants,” Mr. Aryeh said.

Noella Penn, a QCC nursing student from Cameroon, said she faced a lot of challenges as an immigrant, from people not understanding her accent, to not knowing anything about her homeland country. She said she has appreciated being at QCC, where she feels part of a community.

“This country has opened a lot of opportunities and given me a lot of chances,”  added student Mustafa Boweden, vice president of the college’s Student Senate.

Originally from Libya, Mr. Boweden said he has also found QCC to be a welcoming place for immigrants.

The final story of the day was from Professor of Human Services Doe West. She told of her Native American heritage and her grandmother’s harrowing story of being forced into slavery as a very young child, simply because she was Native American.

“We need to respect and learn about one another’s culture. It’s imperative that we always see the person in one another,” Ms. West said.

  • QCC alumni Juan Poma
October, 2018

Juan Poma has rocketed himself into Quinsigamond Community College alumni lore. The 2013 QCC Engineering alumni has taken the foundation he received at the college and jettisoned himself into a career at Boeing Aircraft Manufacturing Company.  Today he is an Information Technology (IT) Engineer and an Assistant Business Manager, acting as the bridge between business and IT.

Recently Mr....

More...

Juan Poma has rocketed himself into Quinsigamond Community College alumni lore. The 2013 QCC Engineering alumni has taken the foundation he received at the college and jettisoned himself into a career at Boeing Aircraft Manufacturing Company.  Today he is an Information Technology (IT) Engineer and an Assistant Business Manager, acting as the bridge between business and IT.

Recently Mr. Poma came back for a quick visit to QCC, reminiscing about his time at the college where he said his future began.

“I was at QCC seeing all the students eager to learn, experience college and also being just a little bit scared. I used to be one of them,” he said.

Mr. Poma said his journey to QCC came by way of a circuitous route. In 2010 after graduating from a high school in Bolivia, he moved with his mother to Queens, New York in a quest for a better life than the one he had left. He eventually settling in Worcester with a family member who was living there at the time. Through this relative's wife, he learned about QCC. as she was attending classes at the college. Having come to the U.S. not knowing any English, Mr. Poma knew that while he wanted to further his education, he must first learn the language of his new country. He spent the next six months at a private school immersed in learning English. At the end of 2011 he felt ready and applied to QCC.

“I took my placement test and started from the bottom with the basic English and math classes,” he said.

While taking classes at QCC, Mr. Poma also worked in jobs that included busing tables, making salads, to working full-time at a pizza place from 7:00 p.m. at night until 4:00 in the morning, before attending class full-time during the day. He took the bus to the college every morning and was there by 6:15 a.m.

“You want to do better to help your family. It’s a great motivation,” he said. “My mother couldn’t have an education (in Bolivia). She’s a housekeeper. She fought hard to bring me to this country to have better opportunities. She led by example.”

Eventually, Mr. Poma was able to quit his full-time night job by becoming both a math tutor and student ambassador, which allowed him to practice his English while also taking classes and studying.

“I had a plethora of resources at QCC that I took full advantage of,” he said, adding with a laugh that he was able to “convince” one of his mentors, Mishawn Davis-Eyene (Director of Admissions), to hire him as a student ambassador.

“The goal (of being hired as a student ambassador) was to force myself to keep learning English,” he said. That opportunity led him to a lot of on-campus connections, which included mentoring other classmates.

Mentors have played a huge role in Mr. Poma’s life, from family and friends to the ones he had at QCC.

“Mishawn guided me through the four-year college application process, helping me on where to apply. I had an almost perfect grade point average and she said, ‘we’re going to apply to an ivy league school.’ At that time I didn’t even know what an ivy league school was,” he said.

He also credits Martha Upton, the Learning Manager at the Math Lab; Michelle Tufau Afriyie (former Director of Admissions and current Interim Assistant Vice President of Student Success), and Professor of Engineering Dadbeh Bigonahy, as the mentors who helped to guide him.

After graduating from QCC, Mr. Poma attended Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), earning his bachelor degree in Computer Science. It was at an RPI Job Fair that fate gave him the chance to speak with a Boeing representative, after a friend gave him his spot in line enabling him to talk to the Boeing recruiter. An hour after handing over his resume he received a call for an interview the following day.

“They liked my honesty and technical experience and I got the offer. I never planned to work for such a great company,” he said. “QCC provided me with the foundation to succeed. It provided me with everything I needed.”

Today, Mr. Poma lives in St. Louis, Missouri working at one of Boeing’s sites. In addition to his current position, he is also a NASA Boeing SLS (Space Launch System) Ambassador, which gives him official permission and training from Boeing to go to schools and talk about the SLS program.

“We motivate the student base on the importance that this program has for the future. The people who are in high school and college will play a role in the continued development of SLS that will pave the wave for deep space exploration,” he said. "Some of my presentations have included the Bolivian Embassy in D.C., other Boeing sites, and colleges."

In his “spare time,” Mr. Poma has started a non-profit with a couple of family members to help promote STEM to Bolivian students and will be going to Bolivia soon.

He reiterated that it was QCC, which gave him the foundation to be successful and encourages current students to make the most of their time at the college.

 “If you are able to take advantage of all the resources at QCC it will help you in your career and everywhere you go,” he said.

  • Paper Planes cast members: Tris Sackman as Stella and Xavier Franceschi as Chandler.
  • Fair Play cast members: Spencer Edwards as Kevin and Diana Alacon as Marlene
  • Occupy Hallmark cast members: Nate Wilson as Moose and Lola Balogun as Salty
  • Color Me Complete cast members from left: David Rodriguez as Red and George Baraklilis as Gray.
  • Legs cast members from left: David Rodriguez as Man 1, Liam Doherty as Man 2, Xavier Franceschi as Man 3; Maya Bastien as Maya,
October, 2018

Quinsigamond Community College’s upcoming play, “SLICES OF LIFE - An Evening of Original Works,” is an innovative theatrical performance that incorporates five original short plays into one captivating performance. While each play is completely different, there is an overarching theme about relationships that ties all of the plays together. QCC Play Director Kelly Stowell, said...

More...

Quinsigamond Community College’s upcoming play, “SLICES OF LIFE - An Evening of Original Works,” is an innovative theatrical performance that incorporates five original short plays into one captivating performance. While each play is completely different, there is an overarching theme about relationships that ties all of the plays together. QCC Play Director Kelly Stowell, said the plays were written by student playwrights, whose plays were submitted to the regional Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival (KCACTF), a national theater program.

Ms. Stowell reached out to the National Playwright Program Chair of the regionals to ask to review a variety of student submitted plays to consider for QCC's fall production. From there she chose five diverse plays that were geared for “young people,” she said.

The plays chosen include: “Paper Planes,” by Michael Pisaturo; “Occupy Hallmark,” by Casey M. Senuik; “Fair Play,” by Shaquielle Edwads; “Legs,” by Hanna Byrmen, and “Color Me Complete,” by Rose-Emma Lambridis.  Each of the student playwrights have also been invited to attend the show.

“All of these plays have been written within the last three years and have either won or been a runner up,” Ms. Stowell said. “I like for theater to be socially relevant and make people think.”

Once the plays were chosen, a casting call was held and students were chosen for the roles, with an additional two students as understudies.The entire cast is made up of QCC students and Ms. Stowell said  not only was no one was double-cast, but also almost all of the actors are new to QCC theater productions.

Collaboration with the Fab Lab

This will also be the first time the theater group will be collaborating with another department on campus - QCC’s Fab Lab. The staff at the lab will be assisting several students in helping to build rehearsal/ theater blocks for the play that are used as props to help performers act out their scenes.

While this play does not require much in the way of set design, Ms. Stowell said these blocks will be a tremendous help for this play, and the connection they have made with the Fab Lab will be terrific for future props they might need to have made.

She noted that the relationship they have made with the Fab Lab is the perfect tie-in to what the actors are demonstrating in the play – relationships and interpersonal communication.

Another first will be a collaboration with the Media Services. Ms. Stowell said a few students who are interested in lighting and sound will be allowed to shadow and watch media services, offering their input and learning about light design and sound.

The play will take place in the Hebert Auditorium (670 West Boylston Street, Worcester) on November 28, 29, 30 and December 1 at 7:00 p.m. and December 2 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $5.

QCC student Veronica Wiley is the stage manager and student Hailey Shea is the assistant stage manager.  Assistant Director Amber Charest is a QCC alumnus.

 Cast members include:

OCCUPY HALLMARK

  • Moose:  Nate Wilson
  • Salty:  Lola Balogun

COLOR ME COMPLETE

  • Red:  David Rodriguez
  • Gray:  George Baraklilis

PAPER PLANES

  • Chandler:  Xavier Franceschi
  • Stella:  Tris Sackman

LEGS

Maya:  Maya Bastian

Vicky:  Melesia Swanston Alonzo

Man 1:  David Rodriguez

Man 2: Liam Doherty

Man 3:  Xavier Franseschi

FAIR PLAY

Kevin:  Spencer Edwards

Marlene:  Diana Alarcon

Understudies:

Margarita Fabre

John Bacellis

  •  Members of the Women in STEM Club: (from left) President Rose Duchemin, Amanda Hughes and Kacie Senna.
  • Professor of Astronomy & Physics Andria Schwortz
October, 2018

The world of science engineering, technology and mathematics (STEM) has grown exponentially in the last decade and with it has come an increased awareness of STEM education. Recognizing this shift in innovation, the Baker-Polito administration announced the first statewide STEM week from October 22 – 26 to help raise students’ interest and awareness in STEM initiatives. According to a recent report by the...

More...

The world of science engineering, technology and mathematics (STEM) has grown exponentially in the last decade and with it has come an increased awareness of STEM education. Recognizing this shift in innovation, the Baker-Polito administration announced the first statewide STEM week from October 22 – 26 to help raise students’ interest and awareness in STEM initiatives. According to a recent report by the Commonwealth Corporation 600,000 people work in STEM occupations in Massachusetts, making up 17 percent of the total state workforce. The study further showed that by 2026 STEM jobs will be expected to increase by 11.2 percent compared to overall expected job growth of only 7.4 percent.

Quinsigamond Community College has stayed on the forefront of this technology offering programs, technologically-advanced equipment and resources to its students in order to give them a head start when they enter the workforce. During the statewide STEM week event, informational tables were set up inside the Harrington Learning Center, informing students of the exciting STEM programs available to them at QCC. Throughout the week STEM professors took turns highlighting their programs, such as Professor of Astronomy & Physics Andria Schwortz, who did an astronomy demonstration and Professor Jacob Longacre who did some demonstrations of optics/ photonics.

Three students from the Women In STEM (WIS) Club were also on-hand to explain the WIS Club, which was designed for women interested in pursuing science technology, engineering or mathematics at QCC.

WIS President Rose Duchemin, an engineering major at the college, said this is the first time the Women In STEM has been run by the students.

“We’re trying to support women in STEM by socializing with other women who love STEM,” she said, adding that students don’t need to currently be a part of a STEM program to be in the club, they just need to have an interest in STEM. For more information email Ms. Duchemin at rduchemin [at] qmail.qcc.edu.

Some of the activities the group will be involved in include tours of other schools and businesses, attending panel discussions and working in the QCC Fab Lab.

Culminating STEM week, the college hosted students from 27 students and three teachers from Southbridge High School on October 26. The students spent the morning participating in STEM workshops in the biology, chemistry and Fab Labs.

Visit QCC STEM to learn more.

  • Professor of Computer Science Hao Loi shows off the capabilities of a robot.
  • High school students get to try their hand at gaming.
  • Assistant Professor of Manufacturing Technology Lee Duerden
October, 2018

Students from area high schools joined faculty and staff at Quinsigamond Community College during the school’s informational Manufacturing Day on October 19. The day was designed to offer high school students a chance to learn more about manufacturing and technology and the careers in this extensively growing field.

The high school students began their day at the Hebert Auditorium on the college’s...

More...

Students from area high schools joined faculty and staff at Quinsigamond Community College during the school’s informational Manufacturing Day on October 19. The day was designed to offer high school students a chance to learn more about manufacturing and technology and the careers in this extensively growing field.

The high school students began their day at the Hebert Auditorium on the college’s main campus where QCC President Dr. Luis Pedraja told the students of all the new and amazing things that are happening in lasers and photonics.

“There are things that we can do that we never imagined. I look forward to what the future will being and the things that some of you will produce,” he said.

Students also had the opportunity to hear from James Cunningham, Vice President of Cunningham and Associates, a company that has employed several co-op students from QCC.

“When I was in high school no one told to me about STEM. If they did I might have gotten involved in manufacturing sooner,” he said.

Mr. Cunningham discussed the stigma that used to plague the manufacturing industry and how that has all changed. He noted that amazing technological advances are happening right in New England’s backyard, from 3D organs being printed on a massive scale, to automated grocery stores and military sutures that are strong enough to tow a tractor trailer.

“Massachusetts is the number one hub in the nation for innovation,” he said, telling the students, “I can’t find enough talented, qualified people to hire.The demand for STEM jobs is astronomical.”

He encouraged the students to use the day at QCC to spark their inspiration and get introduced to STEM as they walked through the lab spaces, Fab Lab and learned of the opportunities available to them.

“Don’t waste today! Ask questions and get involved,” he added.

Visit QCC’s Manufacturing Technology to learn more.