NEW JEWELRY FABRICATION CERTIFICATE OFFERED AT WESTCHESTER COMMUNITY COLLEGE’S WHITE PLAIN EXTENSION THIS FALL
Westchester Community College is offering a new non-credit Jewelry Fabrication Certificate to help enable County residents to fill openings in this lucrative field. The jewelry industry, based primarily in New York City, is valued at $71 billion. The salaries for bench jewelers range from $16-$27 per hour/ $50,000 to $65,000 per year. These positions do not require credit classes or a degree.
The certificate, with classes starting on September 24, can be completed in three semesters. The classes will be offered at the college’s Center for the Arts at 196 Central Avenue in White Plains.
“Responding to the popularity of jewelry classes, and the need for more individuals to enter the industry, we have created this new certificate,” says Lisa Santalis, Director, Center for the Arts. “There are very few places to learn and develop these skills outside of New York City. Our exceptional facilities and professional teaching artists have cultivated an enthusiastic community and many of our jewelry fabrication students have already gone on to start their own businesses,” she adds.
The non-credit classes provide the technical skills needed, and the portfolio of work required, to enable students to pursue multiple careers in the industry. Bench jewelers actually construct jewelry, while sales associates are involved in the purchase of jewelry. In addition to training individuals for these positions, those who complete the certificate will be better prepared to transfer to four-year bachelors program in the field, or to start their own business.
To apply for these affordable classes in the jewelry studio at Westchester Community College’s Center for the Arts in White Plains, contact Rebecca Widman (Rebecca.email@example.com, 914-606-7510) by mid-September.
The Alumni Council hosted the College Connection Barbecue on August 7, 2018. Westchester Community College alums now attending four-year schools volunteered to gather with current students to help them with any questions about the college and offer their advice.
President Belinda S. Miles has joined the Board of Directors of COMBASE, a national consortium of leading community and technical colleges dedicated to sharing innovative solutions to meet the challenges of the nation’s rapidly changing economy. She will serve in the capacity of Director-at-large for COMBASE (an abbreviation for “community-based” colleges). In 1974, when COMBASE was established, a high school education was enough for most Americans to obtain a middle-class job. Today, everyone recognizes the importance of education and training beyond high school, to be college and career ready and ultimately attain a good job and a living wage. America has turned to its community colleges to deliver what both students and employers need, with new and innovative programs that leverage partnerships throughout the community and the nation. For more than forty years, through its programs and publications, COMBASE has ensured that innovative programs in education are promoted and replicated.
Student Trustee, Elizabeth Lugones is sworn in as a member of the Board of Trustees.
Deborah S. Raizes and Dr. Gregory Robeson Smith recite the Oath of Office as they are sworn in.
The Westchester Community College Board of Trustees has added three new members:
Elizabeth Lugones has been selected as the student representative to the college’s Board of Trustees. Her goal is to graduate from the college with a degree in Engineering Science and then move on to a master’s program before entering the industry.
Deborah S. Raizes is a senior consultant for Hazard, Young, Attea & Associates, Ltd., which specializes in searches for administrators, including superintendents, at public schools. Prior to this position, she was a teacher for the Durham County Schools in Durham, North Carolina.
She has a significant record of voluntary public service in the field of education. Highlights include her affiliation with the Westchester Community College Foundation Board for which she has served in a variety of roles including member, chairperson, and president. She has also served as vice chairperson and chairperson for the Lesley University Board of Trustees. She is currently a member of the Board of Trustees for this private institution in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
In addition to her work with Westchester Community College Foundation, her local impact has been significant through her involvement with the Scarsdale School System. She served as president of the Scarsdale Council of Parent Teacher Associations, was a member of the Westchester-Putnam School Board Association, and was a member of the New York State School Board Association. For the Scarsdale Board of Education, she held several roles ranging from member to vice president and president.
A member of the Institutional Review Board of the White Plains Hospital Center, she received her B.S. in Education from Lesley College. She was recognized by the Westchester Community College Foundation, which bestowed the Abeles Award to her due to her commitment to public service. She also received the Lesley College Community Service Award.
Dr. Gregory Robeson Smith is the senior pastor of the Mt. Hope A.M.E. Zion Church, the oldest African-American Congregation in Westchester County. He is the president of the Mt. Hope Community Development Corporation; Prince Hall Housing Development Fund Inc.; and Prince Hall Fund Inc., a multi-million dollar non-for-profit 501(c)3 Foundation providing program funds/grants to assist the poor, distressed, and underprivileged. In 1990, he was appointed by President Bush as president and chief executive officer of the African Development Foundation, an independent Federal agency in Washington, D.C., with offices in 25 African nations and a staff of more than 3,000 individuals. Dr. Smith continued to serve in this position in the Clinton Administration. The agency assists the most vulnerable members of society with grants for technical assistance and capacity building to grassroots organizations, cooperatives, and community enterprises that strengthen local institutions and achieve lasting impact. He also has served as Director of International Disaster Response for Church World Service, an entity of the National Council of Churches.
A graduate with honors from Livingstone College in Salisbury, North Carolina, Dr. Smith also earned two Masters and two Doctoral degrees: MBA Degree in Marketing and Finance; a Master of Divinity Degree; Doctorate in Higher Education Administration and Finance ABD; and a Doctorate in Ministries.
Dr. Smith is the grandnephew of the late Paul Robeson, the renowned singer and activist.
Congresswoman Nita Lowey held a June 11, 2018 press conference at the college’s Virginia Marx Children’s Center to announce multiyear funding of a grant for student parents. This $800,000 grant (about $211,000 per year for four years) will allow the college to provide subsidies for qualified, low income, Pell eligible student parents; assist the college in recruiting to enable more students to take advantage of the college’s childcare services; and provide student parents with additional support to help them achieve success as students and as parents.
35 families will receive annual stipends through the Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) grant. The college will develop a sliding scale based upon student need and the number of credits taken by student parents. The student parents may receive as much as $5,754 annually.
The event, attended by News 12 and FIOS-1, included comments from three student parents who told their own personal stories:
Kristen Hopper and her twins Julia and Robert. Kristen has four children; her older children are now ten and fifteen. The twins were born later. She faced some difficulties in balancing not only her school commitments and her child rearing duties, but also a commute. She traveled by bus with her twins through rain, snow, etc. But she persevered and wants to let others know that they can do so, too! She says she changed her life around thanks to the college and the Children’s Center. Julia and Robert are both three and they are thriving, as is Kristen. Kristen just graduated in May (Criminal Justice/Police) and is moving on to further study at Berkeley College. She is hoping for a career in law, perhaps starting as a legal secretary and then moving on to become a lawyer.
Merly Fonseca and Zoe (her child). Merly studies Radiologic Technology at the college. Merly started at Norwalk Community College, earned an associate’s degree there, and then transferred here. She received scholarship money, and financial aid, and both have helped her pursue her studies. As a realtor, a mother, and a student, she’s got a lot going on. The whole reason that she can work is because of the Children’s Center; if it was not for that, she would not be able to do all that she is doing.
Tina Jones’ daughter is Kayla and she is four years old. Tina had her daughter in childcare at another facility and she was considering a change. She heard a lot about our facility so she switched over and has been thankful for all the services offered here. When she came to the college with her boyfriend, the child’s father, they decided to attend the college as a group! Kayla, who is leaving the Center for kindergarten, did very well at the Center. Tina is taking Liberal Arts and is considering transferring over the Radiologic Technology Program. Her boyfriend, registered for Liberal Arts classes. They both made the Dean’s List and are continuing their studies here – he’s taking summer classes and she’s coming back for more classes in the fall.
At the event, President Belinda S. Miles thanked the Congresswoman for her support. “It is a special treasure to be able to support our students and their young children at the same time. This is a unique place where our students come to achieve their academic and career goals while their children take part in an accredited curriculum supporting early childhood development, a distinction among child care centers. We are especially grateful for Congresswoman Lowey’s strong advocacy on behalf of Westchester Community College students and the award-winning Virginia Marx Children’s Center,” said Dr. Miles.
Children’s Center Director Susan Zucker gave an overview of the Center at the event.
Nearly ¾ of a million residents of Hudson Valley, many whom are in Westchester, have earned college credits but have not received degrees. Many of these individuals seek to earn more college credits, or a degree, while also caring for their families. Due to economic pressures, they are unable to consider college, which would allow them to move on to careers or further education. If they had the means to afford that education, they would be better able to provide for their families. The college has found that higher education benefits not just individuals, but entire families, since it can help students move on to better paying employment, new careers, etc.
This is an important grant because it supports the overall concept of providing childcare services for students with children. This is especially relevant in Westchester: we recognize that the cost of childcare is a barrier to those who seek to simultaneously further their education while raising their children.
These students will have the opportunity to attend an accredited (National Association for the Education of Young Children – NAEYC), award–winning, state of the art, childcare center. The Center received the highest rating from QUALITYstarsNY, the state’s rating system for childcare facilities.
The Center provides a nurturing environment that is safe and healthy. There are extensive opportunities for learning, physical development, culture, art expression, and language development. These offerings are important for the development of young minds and are aligned with research regarding learning and early child development.
This grant shows the federal government’s commitment to helping parents achieve their college goals.
There are current openings for the children of student parents and for members of the community. If you are interested in childcare, email firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Also, for more information on the Center, see the Children’s Center web pages: http://www.sunywcc.edu/student-services/childrenscenter/
Local news coverage of the announcement
Photos from the announcement
We recorded the entire 2018 Commencement Program and posted it on YouTube which can be seen here. The procession begins at 34:16.
President Miles met the winners of the Personal Development Awards. These students overcame obstacles while pursuing their education.