Campus Connections, Top Stories, Feb. 16


Scholarship Salute

The SMCC Foundation is paying tribute to donors who have contributed to Foundation scholarships and students who have received them.

At coffee receptions at the McKernan Center last week, the Foundation recognized several dozen students who received Foundation scholarships this year, as well as donors whose generosity has made the scholarships possible.

The Foundation awarded nearly 200 scholarships this year totaling about $200,000. The grants help lessen the impact of tuition costs, reduce the amount of money students need to borrow and help toward their academic success.

At a Feb. 8 reception, Business major Pamela Almodovar said her scholarships are enabling her to pursue her dreams.

“I don’t want to just have a job,” she said. “I want a career.”

The Foundation raises funds that enable the college to provide scholarship support for deserving students, to enhance academic programs and to revitalize classrooms and equipment.

Caption: From left, President Cantor with donor Judy Schneider, Professor Geoff Boardman, business student Pamela Almodovar, HVAC student Whitney Cole, and donors Althea Bennett McGirr, Jean Bennett Driscoll, Barney Schneider and Wilfred Beriau.


Science students study eelgrass DNA

Twelve SMCC students spent a week in January performing hands-on research studying the loss of eelgrass along the Maine coast.

During a weeklong course at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory in Bar Harbor, the students extras DNA from samples of eelgrass from Frenchman Bay (near Bar Harbor) and Casco Bay to see if the eelgrass was undergoing environmental stress.

“It was amazing to be part of a real scientific study, rather than a laboratory exercise designed to fit into a two-hour block of time,” said biotechnology student Julie Moulton. “The course expanded and enhanced my understanding of science and now I am better equipped to understand the basis of what we learn in my science class.”

Besides Moulton, other students who took part were Aimee Bussiere; Josh Clukey; Joe Cote; Lauren Hayden; Arnold Kampoto; Jeremy Marcotte; David Miller; Christopher Mullen; Lance Seasholtz; Guy Seavey; and Corey Willey.

The course was supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health. The students will present their findings in April at the Thinking Matters Symposium at USM and at the Maine Biological and Biomedical Sciences Symposium at MDIBL.

The eelgrass research is a continuation of a project started last summer by SMCC student Jessica Mayhew during a summer research fellowship at MDIBL.

Photo caption: Arnold Kampoto (left) and Jeremy Marcotte research eelgrass DNA at the Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory.

Transfer opportunities knocking

Thinking of transferring after graduation? Then you won’t want to miss upcoming visits from admissions representatives from colleges and universities from across New England.

The visits are your opportunity to learn more about transfer opportunities and the degree programs at the visiting schools.

Here’s what’s on schedule:

  • Wednesday, Feb. 17. A University of Southern Maine admissions representative will have an information table in the Campus Center from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and also be meeting one-on-one with students by appointment during the day.
  • Monday, Feb. 22. A Plymouth State University admissions representative will be in the Campus Center from 10 a.m-1 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Feb. 24. A University of Massachusetts-Lowell admissions representative will be in the Campus Center from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., and a Vermont Technical College representative will be there from 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
  • Monday, Feb., 29. The University of New England will have a person in the Campus Center from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Tuesday, March 8. A University of Southern Maine admissions representative will be available in the Campus Center from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and also be meeting one-on-one with students during the day by appointment. To set up an appointment, call 741-5626.

Jewett Auditorium improvements on tap

The largest auditorium on SMCC’s South Portland Campus is getting a makeover.

Jewett Hall Auditorium will be renovated from top to bottom following the end of Spring Semester to make it more inviting, tech-friendly and conducive to learning.

When the work is completed, the auditorium will have:

  • New seating
  • New sheetrock walls to improve sound
  • New lighting
  • Better lighting control
  • New carpet
  • New window panels in the doors to allow people to look in and out without opening the doors
  • Improved handicapped accessibility
  • New plugs in seats for technology devices

The auditorium seating capacity, now at 119 seats, will increase slightly when the renovations are complete.