Reading, PA – Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Teresa Miller visited Reading Area Community College (RACC) on July
Reading, PA – Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Teresa Miller visited Reading Area Community College (RACC) on July 12 to highlight the department’s Keystone Education Yields Success (KEYS) program. KEYS assists students who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits pursue certificates, degrees, or credentials at Pennsylvania’s community colleges. The visit was the first stop on a statewide tour of KEYS programs at each of Pennsylvania’s 14 community colleges.
“The KEYS program is doing incredibly important work around the commonwealth to help Pennsylvanians in low-income situations access post-secondary education and training in a way that addresses and helps overcome the unique challenges and barriers students face,” said Secretary Miller. “This collaborative effort has a transformative impact on a person’s personal and economic trajectory, helping them truly achieve a better life.”
KEYS is a collaboration between DHS and Pennsylvania’s 14 community colleges. First established in 2005, KEYS has helped more than 15,300 people access post-secondary education and training.
"The fantastic work our staff is doing through KEYS and various training programs at RACC is very important to students who are becoming emotionally and intellectually independent," says KEYS Program Coordinator and Student Facilitator Mary Turner. “The students at RACC show what individuals can do when they are given the tools to succeed."
KEYS programs provide supportive services to students like assistance with school supplies, transportation, and child care. Students are also connected with mentoring and peer support relationships critical to helping them ease the transition back into school and overcome barriers to success in education. The KEYS program has an 82 percent retention rate and 78 percent of KEYS participants are in good academic standing.
“Too many single-parent families in Pennsylvania and around the country feel limited by their economic situation. We are committed to giving them the tools and supports necessary to help them change their family’s path and, most importantly, to help them realize that they are not alone in this journey,” said Secretary Miller. “Each of us can play a role in supporting parents and families seeking better lives, and KEYS and the Parent Pathways initiative will give us a vehicle to make this work possible in more communities.”
For more information, please contact the RACC KEYS Program at 610-372-4721.
Reading, PA - The Reading Area Community College (RACC) Adult Basic Education (ABE) program honored 88 student
Reading, PA - The Reading Area Community College (RACC) Adult Basic Education (ABE) program honored 88 students who have obtained their GED in a graduation ceremony on Wednesday, May 22nd in the Miller Center for the Arts on the RACC campus.
Students walking the stage have spent hundreds of hours working on GED preparation in one of RACC’s classes. The GED examination is equivalent to a high school diploma and certifies a student as having high school graduate-level skills.
"Adult education is a vital program in our community, and we at RACC are proud to offer this option for students looking to improve their marketability in the workforce, or continue their education at the next level,” says Dr. Susan D. Looney, RACC president.
Many students graduating have also completed English as a Second Language courses and now plan to further their education-including enrolling at RACC to earn a degree.
For more information about RACC’s GED and ABE programs, call 610.372.4721, ex. 5322.
Written by Reading Eagle
Reading, PA — Reading Area Community College celebrated its 47th commencement Friday afternoon with a record high of 540 students earning degrees, certificates and diplomas from the community college.
“It is a privilege and a joy to see so many graduates take this step toward great success in the years ahead,” Dr. Susan D. Looney, college president, said during a ceremony in Santander Arena. “Our students and graduates continue to inspire me every day, and they will continue to make the RACC family of faculty, staff, students and alumni very proud.”
Looney, during her first graduation ceremony as RACC president, presented the President's Award to Dr. Thomas F. Flynn, president of Alvernia. Flynn started in his post in 2005 and is retiring in June.
During his tenure, Flynn has overseen the development of new strategic and campus master plans that culminated when Alvernia achieved university status in 2008.
April Conrad, who received a degree in health science, delivered the student speech. Conrad plans to work as a pediatric cardiovascular sonographer.
During her two years at RACC, Conrad showcased leadership skills as a college ambassador and peer mentor. Conrad's poetry has been published in RACC's literary magazine, Legacy.
Written by Marge Rumbaugh/Reading Eagle
Reading, PA — Dr. Susan D. Looney, president of Reading Area Community College, announced at Wednesday's board of trustees meeting that 540 students should graduate on Friday.
That is an unofficial count pending final grades, but it would be the most graduates in RACC's history.
The previous high was 510 in 2012. Last year there were 480 graduates.
This year's commencement at 2 p.m. in the Santander Arena also will feature a lower stage, compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, for disabled students.
Despite the increase, RACC has the third lowest tuition of all Pennsylvania's community colleges, Looney said.
READING, PA — Alpha Sigma Rho, Reading Area Community College’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Chapter, attended the PT
READING, PA — Alpha Sigma Rho, Reading Area Community College’s Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Chapter, attended the PTK International Convention (Catalyst) in Orlando, Florida on April 4-6, 2019. The convention hosted the Hallmark Awards, a major program of PTK International, which engages members to participate in activities supporting the Society’s Hallmarks of Scholarship, Leadership, Service and Fellowship. Chapters submit reports on their work in several areas, and the submissions are then judged competitively. Individuals, chapters and regions are recognized for their excellence in support of these hallmarks.
Led by RACC Professor Emerita Dr. Donna Hampton Singleton, RACC faculty member Dr. Danelle Bower and RACC faculty member Ms. Denise Strohmayr, the RACC PTK Chapter won three significant Chapter awards, and five individual awards. The chapter awards are: Top 100 Chapters-among the top 100 chapters internationally; Distinguished Honors in Action award-for their academic exploration of how people communicate in today’s society; and the Distinguished Chapter award-this is awarded to chapters based on cumulative scores in the Hallmark activities.
The following four individuals received awards for outstanding work in PTK: Valerie Mackey (Chapter Vice President)-GEICO Pathways to Completion Bachelor’s Degree Scholar; Judith Croteau-Coca-Cola Academic Team Scholar; Leann Wolf-Distinguished Chapter Member Award for her significant work supporting chapter activities, and RACC President Dr. Susan Looney-Paragon Award for new college presidents.
“This Chapter worked extremely hard to get here, and now the work, determination and dedication has paid off. This group is a family, and we hope that other PTK members will step up, get active, and continue to lead our team even further in the years to come,” says PTK advisor, and RACC faculty member Dr. Danelle Bower.
PTK students have a 91 percent student success rate, and research has shown that strong presidential leadership and support of PTK increases member success and the depth of their college experience.
The Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society recognizes academic achievement of community college students and provides opportunities for them to grow as scholars and leaders. For more information about Phi Theta Kappa at Reading Area Community College, please call 610.372.4721.