April is Community College Month after Gov. Ralph Torres signed yesterday the proclamation at the As Terlaje campus of the Northern Marianas College, which joins colleges from all over the nation for a month full of activities to promote the value of higher education.
The proclamation, which was read to the crowd present and virtually over Zoom by representatives of the Associated Students of NMC, Project Proa Navigators, and Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, says the occasion presents NMC with “a unique opportunity during college month to promote the value of higher education with prospective students, share our college and is addressing workforce development needs and demonstrate why public support of our Proa is important now more than ever.”
NMC president Dr. Galvin Deleon Guerrero said the occasion is an important way to celebrate and honor the contributions of community colleges. He credits NMC’s success to open admissions, stellar student support services, and ensuring fairness and equity for all students. Community colleges provide much lower tuition rates and much more in financial aid and scholarships.
“Although NMC offers four-year degree programs, seven out of nine degree programs are associate’s degree programs, and 80% of our students are enrolled in associate’s degree programs.” Deleon Guerrero said. “Over the past five years, our associate’s degree programs have doubled their graduation rates.”
In Torres’ remarks after the proclamation signing, he said, “[NMC] will continue to play a vital role in increasing our U.S. workforce, growing our economy, and enhancing the quality of life for the people of the Marianas. I call upon the people of the Commonwealth to support our Proa Tribe as they continue to provide quality higher education for our community.” Proa is an indigenous term for “sailboat” and NMC often uses the term to refer to the college.
As part of a monthlong celebration, ASNMC will be hosting a “Egg Hunt” today, April 5.
On Wednesday, there will be the Student Employee Appreciation Breakfast in celebration of National Student Employment Week, followed by the “Mental Health & Wellbeing” Student Success Series. On Thursday, there will be the University of Alaska Fairbanks Info Session. April 12 will be “College Night.”
April 18 and April 25 will be “Mentorship Monday.”
■ April 19, is “Paint Night.”
■ April 20: Showcasing the Strength of Everyone!—Special Education Concentration.
■ April 22: “Small Business Showcase,” with the Small Business Development Center highlighting students and alumni entrepreneurs.
■April 27: Student Town Hall.
■ April 29: Proa Promise Signing Day and 2nd Annual Research Symposium, followed by a Mentorship Activity.