TRIO Student of the Month: Giovonni Carden

Giovonni Carden always wanted to be a nurse. She knew SC4 had a great program and it was also close by, so her choice was simple. But the decision to go to college often involves additional challenges that aren’t quite as simple. So Carden also got involved with the college’s TRIO Student Support Services program at the suggestion of some of her friends.

“I heard great things from others about the [TRIO] program,” Carden said, “and I thought that I could use some help along my journey in college.”

Her intuition about joining TRIO turned out to be a great choice.

“TRIO has helped me obtain my goals by mentoring me, addressing questions and concerns I had, and walking me through the steps to prepare for and apply to the nursing program,” she explained. “Shawne Jowett [Interim Director of TRIO at SC4] has been there for me every single time I needed her help. I’m extremely grateful for her. I really can’t thank her enough for all the help she has given me.”

For her achievements at SC4 and in the TRIO program, Carden is the October TRIO Student of the Month.

Balancing college and everyday life aren’t easy. Carden notes that she needed to work, pay her bills (including tuition), while also finding time to do well in her classes. “It wasn’t easy at the time, but I took everything one step at a time and didn’t worry about events I couldn’t control,” she said.

Carden would recommend the TRIO program to current SC4 students as well as incoming freshmen. “TRIO has such a broad spectrum of resources anyone could benefit from it,” she said. “Also, it’s full of sweet, caring people who are always there to help when you need them.”

She’s planning to complete her nursing degree at SC4 and then move on to complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. She’d like to be an operating room nurse or maybe a labor and delivery nurse. Later, she may investigate becoming a doula (someone who provides emotional and physical support during pregnancy and childbirth).

“I want to be there to help and make sure they’re comfortable,” she said.

SC4 to host virtual Financial Aid Night Oct. 13

St. Clair County Community College will host its annual Financial Aid Night at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 13, via a virtual Zoom meeting.

Open to students, families and all area residents, the event connects SC4’s financial aid experts with the community to share valuable information about financial aid processes, opportunities and tips to maximize the money students can receive.

With the 2021-22 Federal Application for Free Student Aid (FAFSA) becoming available Oct. 1, the event provides timely assistance for anyone who wants to learn more about paying for college. While Financial Aid Night is hosted by SC4, students and families interested in any college are welcome to attend.

The presentation will provide information on all type of financial aid, including loans, grants, and scholarships. SC4 representatives will explain how to apply for financial aid and give tips for obtaining maximum awards. A question-and-answer period will also be available.

“If you’re interested in earning a degree or certificate and want to learn more about federal, state and private funding sources and scholarships that might help you achieve your goals, this event is for you,” said Director of Financial Assistance and Services Josephine Cassar.

For those interested in attending, registration is required by emailing njsemrow@sc4.edu.

Learn more about making college affordable at sc4.edu/financial-aid.

SC4 President’s Honor List for Summer 2020

A total of 218 St. Clair County Community College students earned a spot on the President’s Honor List for the 2020 summer semester, which ended Aug. 7.

Students must take at least six credits and have a grade-point average of 3.0 or higher to make the list.

President’s Honor List for the 2020 summer semester, ordered by hometown:

Algonac — Alexis Semaan.

Allenton — Shelby Husovsky.

Almont — Chelsee Berger, Maria Bussone, Alyssa Soave and Timothy Wolf.

Armada — Kayla Campis and Nicole Sawitzky.

Attica — Miranda Pekala.

Avoca — Samantha Chauvin, Camryn Griffith, Emily Kean, Sarah Koch, Joseph Robinson and Doug Schoenberg.

Berlin Township — Dylan McCarroll.

Birmingham — Olivia Freshwater.

Bloomfield Hills — Roxanne Martin.

Brockway Township — Abigail Westrick.

Brown City — Isabel Woodall.

Burtchville Township — Brooklynn Wilton.

Capac — Kari Bastian, Benjamin Geliske, Dakota Killingbeck, Priscilla King, Terra King and Kathryn Oliver.

Casco Township — Daley Boyd.

China Township — Katie Tyrrell and Kristin Malcolm.

Clay Township — Anya Gerstenberg, Jenna Graham, Ashley Huber and Marianne Karos.

Clifford — Amanda Pratt.

Clyde Township — Jordan Berg, Madison Berg, Melissa Graham, Kelly Peters, Emma Purdy and Mackenzie Witt.

Columbus Township — Kimberly Berman, Alison Billeaudeau, Amber Delor, Kalie Foxwell and Carrie Rush.

Cottrellville Township — Kelly Bonam.

Croswell — Pertrilla Brown, Eden Jenkins, Matthew Kerrigan and Breanna Ngow.

Deckerville — Mitchell Noble.

East China Township — Desaray DeSnyder, Daniel Ferrone, Adrianne Henderson, Elsa McClure, Charles McKay and Kelsey Russell.

Emmett — Angela Heiden and Matthew Wetter.

Fair Haven — Matthew Privaloff.

Fort Gratiot — Zachary Brockway, Bailey Compton, Julia Cope, Dofonso Fernando, Ryan Hunt, Amanda Isaac, Larissa John, Ethan Kane, Taylor Kelley, Hope Knowlton, Jordyn Knowlton, Jon Laffrey, Madison Loviska, Roman Lucido, Michele Niehaus, Clara Scheid, Alexis Shreeve, Jennifer Steinke, Sophia Vani, Ian Wilson and Luke Zeller.

Goodells — Eva Wiegand.

Greenwood Township — Morgan Asselin.

Harbor Beach — Skylar Deer.

Imlay City — Dominique Perreault, Kayla Schocke and Shelby Webb.

Jeddo — Heather Porter and Maxwel Terry.

Kimball Township — Allison Cole, Andrea Dunn, Gale Kicinski, Davon Morris, Garrett Royce, Jenna Russell, Beth Seibert, Brianna Swantek and Paj Yang.

Lexington —Riley Bongard, William Patterson and Naomi Wildey.

Marine City — Hailey Butler, Melanie Carlson, Emily Dart, Thomas Kaminski, Conner Mathews, Jamie Stanislawski and Alyssa Westrick.

Marlette — Rebecca Jar.

Marysville — Mathew-James Alcorn, Sirena Bond, Aric Chojnowski, Eric Decker, Hunter Fite, Karlie Franz, Jacob Gilbert, Gwyneth Glombowski, Kaitlynn Kindsvater, Zane King, Kirsten Kish, Isabella Mills, Ashley Nevarez, Cade Perrin, Angella Rathsack, Adam Tuckey and Hannah Wiegand.

Melvin — Caitlin Houde.

Memphis — Taylor Kreger, Jenna Lesch and Casondra Sumpter.

Miami, Fla. — Ariel Dominguez.

Mussey Township — Sherri Domzalski, Pamela Lerash and Danielle Sawyer.

New Baltimore — Ashley Kraft.

New Haven — Christene Marcum.

North Branch — Katrina Guldi.

Port Huron — Morgan Alexis, Christopher Ballard, Kiera Barnes, Alexander Bird, Alexzandra Carr, Kayla Cartier, Faith Chmielewski, Noel Cosby, April Cox, Lindsey Crane, Elizabeth Dewey, Kaitlyn Douglas, Shylah Drouillard, Rachel Dubs, A.J. Fagan, D. Hope Galarza-Amaro, Porfirio Garcia, Latonya Harmon, Camille Harrison, Katherine Hollingsworth, Morgan James, Desiree Markopoulos, Syrys Molesworth, Remy Reynolds, Niurka Rodriguez, Dawn Silk, Adrienne Slossar, Daniele Soper, Lindsay Thoms, Lily Vella, Kobi Voelker, Stacey Wahl, Haley Werth, Nicholas Wik, Cheyna Williams, Julia Wing and David Wolven.

Port Sanilac — Olivia Espinoza.

Richmond — Regina Long and Isabella Tollis.

Riley Township — Shelby Enders and Emily Wyszczelski.

St. Clair — Avery Aiello, Katelyn Bartholomew, Julianna Cataldo, Maranda Decker, Brenda Domagalski, Julie Felbarth, Andre Fleury, Zacchaeus Gilbert, Joshua Hilton, Allison Kaczperski, Sharon Kalbaugh, Therese Kalbaugh, Leigh Knox, Sumner Malcolm, Morgan Mead, Zachary Nicholson, Robert Pelka, Bailey Sazehn, Jeffrie Seros, Sarah Shell, Jacqueline Sikora, Noah Simone and Brendan Weeks.

Sandusky — Rachael Roff.

Smiths Creek — Ross Hinkley.

Swartz Creek — Kallie Albert.

Toronto, Ont. — Jamal Armstrong.

Troy — Jen Minchella.

Wales Township —Emily Marchand, Alexandra Smith and Jacob Weidner.

Yale — Caleb Bollaert, Jada Janes, Joseph Nunley, Carleigh Randolph, David Regan, Kaycee Reid and Franki Whittaker.

Social justice educator Jen Fry to speak to SC4 campus community Oct. 9

St. Clair County Community College invites the community to attend a presentation by social justice educator Jen Fry at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 9. The presentation is offered through SC4’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and will take place via Zoom.

Social justice education assists everyone in critically thinking of how to become culturally competent, how to self-reflect on one’s position, power and privilege, and how to create an inclusive culture that allows diversity to be a part of the culture, not BE the culture.

Jen Fry is a native of Arizona, a Division II athlete, and veteran volleyball coach with over 15 years of experience at the collegiate level with coaching stints at Elon University, the University of Illinois (2011 National Runner-Up), Washington State University, and Norfolk State University. She turned social justice educator when she realized there was a need for educating not only our student-athletes of all ages, but the administration, staff, and coaches who train them through an antiracist lens on issues of race, inclusion, intersectionality, diversity, and equity. She is also working on her Ph.D. in Geography at Michigan State University.

She spoke at TEDxDuke in February 2019 on the topic of “Radical Social Justice Education Through High Fives.” A video of her presentation can be viewed on YouTube at https://youtu.be/IvVIRx1ejz0.

To reserve your spot and receive Zoom login information, email SC4’s Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at dei@sc4.edu. The deadline to reserve your spot is Thursday, Oct. 8.

SC4 student finds college success in TRIO program

When Mikayla Phetteplace decided to restart her college career in 2018, she attended an orientation session for the TRIO program. With a six-month-old baby girl, Mikayla’s schedule wasn’t flexible enough for on-campus classes and she was going to need some help getting back into the swing of college classes. SC4’s TRIO Student Support Services program looked like a great choice.

“After [the TRIO] orientation, I had an advising appointment,” Mikayla explains. “The advisor highly recommended TRIO. I was amazed at the opportunities and benefits of being in the program, so I didn’t hesitate to fill out the application.”

Mikayla has been in the TRIO program for five semesters, and she’s sure she wouldn’t have had the success she’s had at SC4 without it. “Shawne (Jowett, then-TRIO advisor and current Interim Director of the program) kept me on track and made sure that the classes I was taking were online and needed for me to graduate. The early enrollment opportunity and the tutoring were the services I benefited from the most.”

With a full-time job and family responsibilities, Mikayla’s biggest challenge is time, and the help provided by her instructors and the TRIO team has been essential. “There are never enough hours in the day,” she says. “I have found that the trick to having the time is making it. It has seemed impossible sometimes, but things always get accomplished by the deadline. I try to remind myself to breathe and always ask for help when I need it.”

While it was important that she was able to complete her associate degree in computer information systems completely online, being able to travel 30 minutes to campus if she needed additional help was also important to Mikayla’s success. “SC4 is local, so unlike some online schools where literally everything is done online, if I need to come to campus I can.”

Mikayla has had support from many SC4 faculty and staff, but she is particularly thankful for the support of three people. “I’m most grateful for Professor Colleen Forsgren. She has been the most supportive, informational, and just all-around the best professor I’ve had at SC4. I’ve learned so much under her instruction,” Mikayla says. “I’m also grateful to Amy (Hengehold, TRIO Support Staff Member) and Shawne. They’re both so wonderful.”

Because of her overall success at SC4 and the impact that the college’s TRIO SSS program has had on her, Mikayla is the TRIO Student of the Month for September 2020.

Mikayla is planning to graduate in December with her associate degree, and eventually hopes to transfer to a university to complete her bachelor’s degree. She currently works as an administrative assistant and she and her husband hoping to buy a home in the area to give their daughter a place to grow up in and enjoy.

“TRIO has been one of the brightest spots of my college career,” Mikayla says. “There is nothing not to like about TRIO. They are helpful, kind, supportive, and always there if anyone has questions or concerns.”

Registration open for SC4 late-start fall classes

Registration is open for late-start fall semester classes at St. Clair County Community College. Seats are still available in 12-week classes starting the week of Sept. 21 and eight-week classes starting the week of Oct. 19. Classes are available in Port Huron and online.  

Late-start classes allow students to earn credits at a faster pace. Class topics include biology, business, English, history, math, political science, psychology, sociology and more.

Examples of some specific courses offered this fall include:  

  • BIO 271 – Human Anatomy and Physiology
  • BUS 110 – Human Relations
  • BUS 150 – Principles of Business
  • BUS 153 – Business Law
  • BUS 155 – Principles of Management
  • BUS 258 – Human Resources Management
  • CIS 115 – Microcomputer Applications
  • ENG 102 – English Composition II
  • GEO 101 – Earth Science
  • HIS 150 – History of U.S. 1877 to Present
  • MTH 120 – Introduction to Statistics
  • MUS 106 – Music Appreciation
  • PE 128 – Weight Training
  • PSY 180 – Introduction to Psychology
  • PSY 220 – Life Span Developmental Psychology
  • PS 101 ­– Introduction to Political Science
  • SOC 101 – Introduction to Sociology
  • THA 105 – Oral Interpretation  

Current students can search for all courses and sections at sc4.edu/schedule. They can register and pay for classes online in the SC4 Portal at portal.sc4.edu. New students can start at sc4.edu/starthere.  

Registration service also is available from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday at SC4’s One-stop Student Services Center located in the Dr. James C. Acheson Welcome Center on the corner of Erie Street and Glenwood Avenue on the Port Huron campus. Services are being provided in the public areas of the first floor only. Face coverings or masks are required to receive service. Online, remote, and phone services continue to be available.  

SC4 receives $1.3 million TRIO grant

St. Clair County Community College recently was awarded a $1.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to continue its TRIO Student Support Services program. This is the third time SC4 has been awarded funding for its TRIO SSS program, following grants in 2010 and 2015.

The Student Support Services program is one of eight TRIO programs funded by the Department of Education, which share the goal of providing opportunities for academic success and motivating students toward completing their postsecondary educational goals. TRIO’s primary clients are low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities. A major goal of SC4’s TRIO SSS program is to increase retention and graduation rates of the students involved with the program.

SC4’s TRIO SSS program provides individualized tutoring; academic advising; financial aid assistance; and assisting with students’ long-term academic plans, including transferring to four-year colleges and universities after completing their SC4 degree.

“I’m so proud of our TRIO SSS students,” said Shawne Jowett, interim director of the program at SC4. “These students come from a variety of backgrounds, each with their own challenges, but with the help of the TRIO program, and as importantly, the support they give each other, they’ve been successful at achieving their college goals at SC4.”

The program more than 140 SC4 students participating during the 2019-20 academic year.

“The TRIO SSS program has provided outstanding support to SC4 students over the past decade, helping hundreds achieve their goal of earning a college degree,” said Pete Lacey, vice president of student services. “I’m excited to receive this new grant award and look forward to our team continuing to help students successfully navigate college.”

For more information about SC4’s TRIO Student Support Services program, visit sc4.edu/trio.

A TRIO student call bingo at the St. Clair County Council on Aging.
A TRIO student calls bingo at the St. Clair County Council on Aging.

SC4 to open an on-campus health clinic with St. Clair County Health Department

The St. Clair County Health Department and St. Clair County Community College announce the creation of a health clinic on the college’s campus.

The St. Clair County Board of Commissioners authorized the Health Department to work with the college to create the clinic, which will have a full-time nurse on staff. The college will reimburse the Health Department up to $90,000 for staffing and also will provide the office space and utilities.

The clinic will serve as a bridge between pediatric and adult health care in the area, with direct links to the Health Department’s Teen Health and Personal Health clinics.

“This type of community collaboration is a win-win for everyone,” said Dr. Annette Mercatante, Medical Health Officer of the St. Clair County Health Department. “Health is a team effort and we are delighted to have this opportunity to work with our local college and this population.”

In addition to providing important preventative services to the area’s college-age population, it will improve accessibility to health services to those who typically are working or in class during regular clinics’ office hours.

“We’re pleased to establish a health clinic on our campus,” said SC4 President Dr. Deborah A. Snyder. “Health and safety are top priorities for our college. Having the clinic located at SC4 will further enhance the student experience and provide a vital new service to our campus community this fall.”

The Health Department and the college are finalizing the clinic’s location on campus. The clinic is expected to open during the fall semester.

$1 Million fund created to help SC4 Students

PORT HURON – SC4 is providing $1,000,000 in emergency aid funding to support SC4 students impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. The money is available to currently enrolled SC4 students who are experiencing additional financial need caused by the public health emergency. Awards are available to help students who are working toward the completion of a certificate or degree.

This one million dollars in funding to support SC4 students includes $954,739 received as part of the Federal Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act recently approved by Congress, as well as additional college emergency scholarship funds dedicated to supporting students. Awards are in addition to any other financial aid support the student may have received.

Students experiencing challenges are asked to complete a brief form online at sc4.edu/CARES. Additional details about the program are also available on that webpage.

Emergency aid is intended to help students with expenses that may affect their ability to attend SC4, including things such as housing, transportation, basic living needs and other college-related costs. Students experiencing hardships due to unemployment or reduced financial support from their families are encouraged to apply.

Registration for SC4 fall classes is open — Start Here. Go Anywhere.

Registration for fall classes at St. Clair County Community College is open, meaning it’s time for you to schedule the classes you need to get your degree, transfer to a four-year college or start on your path to a new career.

Fall semester begins on Monday, Aug. 24. There is no deposit required to register for fall classes through May 15.

So how do I register?

If you’re a current student at SC4, or you have already gone through the steps for enrollment, you can register online through your student Portal or on the SC4 mobile app.

Not sure which classes you need to take?  Have questions about degree and certificate programs, class selection or other concerns? New college students and those transferring from other schools can set up a phone or virtual advising appointment by visiting sc4.edu/advising.

If you’re not quite ready to register and want to get an idea of what’s out there, you can also browse available classes for the fall semester by visiting sc4.edu/schedule.

Not a student yet? Or maybe you haven’t even applied. Don’t worry, there’s still time. Visit sc4.edu/starthere and fill out your free application today.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, the college is waiving initial advising appointments and placement testing requirements in order to make it easier for you to enroll for classes. Our staff continues to work remotely to assist you with questions. If you have other questions related to registration, email enrollment@sc4.edu.

Attending SC4 is a smart decision, one that will help you go anywhere. SC4 students benefit from affordable tuition, flexibility, a high-quality education, a vibrant campus community, and faculty and staff dedicated to maximizing student success.