Brian Higgins

Brian Higgins

 

Ioulia Furman

Ioulia Furman

Ioulia Furman and Brian Higgins will represent Essex County College on the New Jersey All-State Academic Team. They are also now nominated for the All-USA Community College Academic Team, which will be unveiled next April.

 

Ioula is a Biology, Pre-Medicine major from Bloomfield who has a 3.88 grade point average. Brian, from Newark, carries a perfect 4.0 average with a double major of Mathematics and Engineering. Both students will serve as Essex representatives at the Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Day Recognition Ceremony next May in Trenton.

 

PTK is the two-year college honor society.

 

The state program is hosted by the New Jersey Council of Community Colleges, and co-sponsored by Phi Theta Kappa International and the New Jersey Education Association. The All-USA program is also sponsored by Phi Theta Kappa International along with the Coca-Cola Foundation.

 

Both students are members of the College’s Alpha Theta Theta chapter of Phi Theta Kappa.

 

The 26-year old Ioulia will graduate from Essex in December and transfer to Rutgers University-Newark where she will major in molecular cell biology with a minor in legal studies. “In the future, I see myself as a pathologist as well as a healthcare field administrator, which is why I need the legal background.”

 

She grew up in Russia and has lived in New Jersey for six years. “I came to Essex because of the cost and I’m really glad I did. I’ve learned so much here; Essex really opened up the world for me,” she said.

 

Brian, also 26, started at Essex a year ago as a Computer Information Systems major.  “My goal is to become an electrical engineer, so I felt switching majors would help me when I transfer,” he said. Brian added Mathematics as his second major, noting, “Math is always needed” in the science fields. He is eyeing Cornell University as his transfer destination when he graduates from Essex, projected in Spring 2016.

 

After graduating from Newark’s Science High School, Brian enrolled at New Jersey Institute of Technology. “But I really wasn’t prepared for college, so I ended up leaving and working a couple of years before deciding to go back to school. I’m glad I made the choice to come to Essex first this time around.”

Posted in Academic, Essex County College News
Dr. Gale E. Gibson and Rutgers-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor at White House Summit

Dr. Gale E. Gibson and Rutgers-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor at White House Summit

Today, December 4, Essex County College President Dr. Gale E. Gibson joined President Obama, the First Lady, and Vice President Biden along with hundreds of other college presidents and higher education leaders to announce new actions to help more students prepare for and graduate from college. Other educators representing New Jersey included Rutgers University-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor and Camden County College President Raymond Yannuzzi.

 

The White House College Opportunity Day of Action helps to support the President’s commitment to partner with colleges and universities, business leaders, and nonprofits to support students across the country to help our nation reach its goal of leading the world in college attainment.

 

“This opportunity is vital to Essex County College since our number one priority is student success. We define student success as college readiness, preparedness, retention and higher graduation rates. This event will give us insights, best practices and strategies other leaders with the same challenges are using to leverage their resources and strengthen their infrastructure to accomplish college completion,” said Dr. Gibson.

 

“Moreover, through conversations, panels and networking, I will be able to bring back workforce development ideas to Essex, Newark and the larger New Jersey community,” she added.

 

Thursday’s participants were asked to commit to new action in one of four areas: building networks of colleges around promoting completion, creating K-16 partnerships around college readiness, investing in high school counselors as part of the First Lady’s Reach Higher initiative, and increasing the number of college graduates in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, known as STEM.

 

At its 2014 Commencement, Essex had 34 percent of its graduates earn associate degrees in the STEM majors plus the Allied Heath fields.

 

Essex has teamed up with Rutgers University – Newark and New Jersey Institute of Technology, through the Newark City of Learning Collaborative, to increase the percentage of city residents earning college degrees, certificates and other academic credentials. The initiatives include developing a high school to college pipeline with the city public schools and local charter schools; increasing post-secondary attainment with the help of transfer agreements between Essex and four year institutions; and increasing financial, academic and socio-emotional supports to increase retention and graduation. Essex sends the most transfer students to Rutgers University-Newark and New Jersey Institute of Technology, as well as Montclair State University, than any other two-year college in the state.

Dr. Gibson is also spearheading a number of other initiatives to increase student retention at Essex, as well as increase job opportunities in and around Newark.

 

At the summit, the President announced new steps on how his Administration is helping to support these actions, including announcing $10 million to help promote college completion and a $30 million AmeriCorps program that will improve low-income students’ access to college.  The event was the second College Opportunity Day of Action, and included a progress report on the commitments made at the first day of action on January 14, 2014.

 

Expanding opportunity for more students to enroll and succeed in college, especially low-income and underrepresented students, is vital to building a strong economy and a strong middle class. Today, only 9 percent of those born in the lowest family income quartile attain a bachelor’s degree by age 25, compared to 54 percent in the top quartile. In an effort to expand college access, the Obama Administration has increased Pell scholarships by $1,000 a year, created the new American Opportunity Tax Credit worth up to $10,000 over four years of college, limited student loan payments to 10 percent of income, and laid out an ambitious agenda to reduce college costs and promote innovation and competition.

 

 

Posted in Essex County College News

President Dr. Gale E. Gibson will join President Obama, the First Lady and Vice President Biden at the White House College Opportunity Summit today, December 4. The Summit in bringing together colleges and universities, business leaders, nonprofits and others that are committed to supporting more college opportunities for students across the country.

 

This year’s summit will focus on building sustainable collaborations in communities with strong K-12 and higher education partnerships to encourage college going, and supporting colleges to work together to dramatically improve persistence and increase college completion, especially for first generation, low-income, and underrepresented students.

 

“This opportunity is vital to Essex County College since our number one priority is student success. We define student success as college readiness, preparedness, retention and higher graduation rates. This event will give us insights, best practices and strategies other leaders with the same challenges are using to leverage their resources and strengthen their infrastructure to accomplish college completion,” said Dr. Gibson.

 

“Moreover, through conversations, panels and networking, I will be able to bring back workforce development ideas to Essex, Newark and the larger New Jersey community,” she added.

 

Today, Dr. Gibson will take over our account and post pictures to Instagram at: essex.county.college. Please share and “like” our Facebook page as we update here: https://www.facebook.com/EssexCountyCollege. Retweet our Twitter messages at: https://twitter.com/EssexCountyNwk with the hashtag: #CollegeOpportunity.

 

Also, you can watch the event on Livestream at: www.whitehouse.gov/collegeopportunity

Posted in Essex County College News