Women in Technology Career Panel cultivates insight from non-traditional experts

By Linda Pang

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CCNA certification students Kristin Canale and Rita Pang chat with Jennifer Orazi, associate director of Student Employment and Co-Op at DCCC, during the Nov. 16 Women in Technology Career Panel. Photo by Linda Pang

DCCC’s Division of Business, Computing and Social Science hosted its third Women in Technology Career Panel Nov. 16 on Marple campus. Keynote speaker, Leah Fox, executive vice president of Technology and Services Delivery at LoanLogics, a mortgage software company, shared her insights as a female leader in the information technology (IT) world, followed by a panel featuring women leaders in technology and an informal networking session.

Panelists included Fox; Roxanne Ryan, a java web developer at JW. Pepper & Son, Inc.; Emilia Janczak, a social media manager at Evolve IP; Wendy Reczek, an intellectual property paralegal; and Stefanie Gjørven, a former creative technology executive at ESPN and current adjunct professor at DCCC.

The event was sponsored by the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act.

During the Q&A, moderated by web development student Stacy Finnegan, panelists spoke up about their biggest hurdles and barriers in the technology field, false perceptions, and the importance of being fearless of the subject matter if students are creative-types.

“Science can be an art too,” Reczak said of her paralegal work. “There is an art to science and it’s beautiful. Once I realized that, it was no longer terrifying. And once the fear was gone, I loved it.”

Ryan, who works at one of the largest sheet music retailers, J.W. Pepper & Son, thinks of their programmers as musicians working with “scores of code.”

“Art is a lot of patterns and repetition,” Ryan said. “And programming is a lot of patterns and repetition. Art and science are more connected than society gives them credit for.”

The closing event, an informal networking session, expanded by 15 minutes as attendees sought advice from panelists and additional experts about careers and opportunities, filling the room with chatter and laughter.

Fox and other panelists emphasized the importance of staying current in the field to understand the business, building support systems, and embracing new opportunities.

“And network, network, network,” said computing science professor Ann-Marie Smith, echoing many of the panelists’ sentiments. “I always say to my students, ‘it’s about relationships’.”

In 2016, Smith, along with Marian McGorry, dean of business, computing and social science, created the event for students to network and learn about opportunities from technology experts, with an aim to host one panel per semester. Although the Division of Business, Computing and Social Science and the Division of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics division at DCCC have been separate historically, Smith said that she tries to have events that will cross-over, inviting students and faculty from both areas.

Smith also works with the admissions office to connect with local high schools for interested students and recruitment.

“For panelists, we focus on non-traditional people that work in the field,” Smith said. “I always emphasize to all of my students that everyone should come to these things because although they’ll talk about their experiences as women in the field, the panelists will also talk in general about working in the field of technology and the outlook for jobs in IT.”

Many of the panelists, such as Reczek, Janczak, and Gjørven, shared how they started their careers with bachelor’s degrees in marketing, english, or art, not intending to work in a technology field. For example, Gjørven said she earned her bachelor’s in fine arts, but minored in computer science only because her mother asked her to. At her first job as a graphic designer and animator at a startup company, she said she was “bit by the technology bug” when the computer-generated compilation images were taking too long to display so she decided to write her own code to distribute the process across multiple computers.

Fox, who also serves as vice chair on the board for the Innovative Technology Action Group (ITAG), which focuses on workforce development, said her main takeaway is to find one’s niche and do it well.

“A lot of the questions tonight were around ‘Will I be able to do this?’ and ‘How can I enter into this area?’,” Fox said. “Showing confidence in an interview is huge; showing confidence in your abilities helps the hiring manager see more of your potential.”

During her keynote, Fox shared statistics from a recent study from SmartAsset that ranked Philadelphia as the 10th best city in the country for women in technology. According to the study, although women only fill around 30 percent of technology-related jobs in Philadelphia, it still beats the national average of 25 percent. The study also examined the country’s gender pay gap, where Philadelphia came in at eight percent versus the national average of 15 percent difference in pay.

“Some stats that I’ve read is that women leave technology for other careers at higher rates than men,” Fox said. “So I would like for the next generation of technology leaders to figure that one out and figure out how to retain them. I don’t know if that’s better maternity policies, more recognition, or pay equality, but let’s figure it out.”

Ekea Salter, 32, a computer programming major, heard about the event from her professor.

“I actually enjoyed myself,” Salter added. “I learned that I can do it and that it’s not too hard.”

Both Smith and Fox stated that they were both shocked and saddened that more students did not take advantage of the free event and other similar career-focused opportunities.

“We just didn’t have programs like this when I was going through school,” Fox said. “And the fact that all of these programs are put together just to help the students build their careers? It would be great for them to take advantage of them more.”

Contact Linda Pang at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

The best and worst of college rankings

By Victoria Lavelle

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For the second straight year, Pennsylvania’s community colleges have come in last place on WalletHub’s 2017 “Best and Worst Community Colleges” list.

Pennsylvania’s community colleges ranked 46th out of 46 qualifying states in 2016, and 44th out of 44 eligible states in 2017.

Within the state, DCCC ranked third out of Pennsylvania’s 14 community colleges, placing at No. 580 nationwide.

Luzerne County Community College ranked first, and Butler County Community College ranked second.

WalletHub rankings were based on 14 key measures, including learning cost and financing, education results, and career outcomes.

Student reactions over WalletHub’s dead last ranking of community colleges in the Keystone State were dismissive and blunt.

“Students shouldn’t give WalletHub’s ranking too much clout because it’s just one out of the many that can be found on Google search,” said computer science major Danny Lawrence.

Lawrence explained that he only looks at the college ranking systems that collect data from federal agencies.

“WalletHub’s ranking of our state’s community colleges is a false representation of our superb educational experience here at DCCC,” said Kelly McCuster, a social work associate in arts student at DCCC. “The internet is littered with college rankings that are nothing more than a bunch of high-stakes popularity contests. Organizations profit by scoring a school based solely off its reputation — deserved or not. Essentially, college rankings are a bad practice because they tend to do more damage by diminishing the character and notoriety of the vast majority of participating colleges.”

Nevertheless, because choosing a college is a sizeable investment, students and their families often turn to college rankings to assist them in making the decision, something Hope Diehl, assistant vice president for DCCC’s Enrollment Services, discourages because such rankings may not be legitimate.

“We should not give too much credence to any formal ranking system of colleges,” Diehl said. “Though college rankings may seem appealing to read, they tend to rely on questionable formulas to rank colleges.”

Diehl also pointed out that a majority of more popular college rankings rely heavily upon student opinion and campus reputation, which, she explained, is not an effective tool for measuring a school’s value.

WalletHub defended its rankings.

WalletHub media director and analyst Jill Gonzalez is a financial literacy advocate who has appeared on NBC Nightly News, Fox Business Network, and Wall Street Journal Live as listed on her LinkedIn profile.

Gonzalez responded to questions raised by The Communitarian, regarding the last place ranking of Pennsylvania community colleges, with a statement via email.

“To determine which states’ have the best and worst community-college systems in the U.S., our researchers drew upon results from our analysis of 2016’s Best & Worst Community Colleges,” Gonzalez explained. “Pennsylvania ranked last because even its highest-ranking community college, Luzerne County Community College, ranks in the middle-of-the-pack at 444th. The lowest ranking Pennsylvania institution, Lackawanna College, ranked second to last at 725th for 2018 was bogged down by cost of in-state tuition and fees, and ranked 813th for this metric at $14,110 in 2016, and $14,580 in 2017. Our system is an objective study, created as a guide to help students, parents, and faculty assess the status of higher education within their state”

According to Gonzalez, WalletHub helps students, parents, and faculty assess the status of higher education within their state. She emphasized that it’s not WalletHub’s goal to damage an institution’s image by placing colleges in last place.

Where to find other rankings and reviews

The growing industry of ranking universities, colleges, community colleges, and technical schools has skyrocketed in recent years, and most offer a wide scale of campus details nationwide.

The long-standing U.S. News and World Report and Washington Mont h ly magazine have published college rankings for the past 11 years. Money and Forbes magazines also publish guides by Princeton Review, Barron’s, the Fiske Guide to Colleges, and The College Board.

With the advancement of modern technology and the entire world accessible at the tap of a mouse or finger, the internet has also become home to a growing population of “best and worst college” websites.

In addition to college rankings, companies like CollegeStats offers a database of more than 3,000 colleges and universities to find the advanced degree opportunities tailored to each individual student. CollegeStats allows users to decide what matters most to them in the quest to find a college fit, and a separate online degree finder to narrow the search.

Another alternative to “best college ranks” are the handful of college review websites available online. Visitors can read college reviews created by students and alumni, or write their own campus review to post. Some of those sites include CollegeTimes, StudentReviews, Unigo, and RateMyProfessor.

The American Association of Colleges (AAC) estimates there are more than 6,900 accredited four-year colleges and universities in the nation with 20.5 million undergraduate students nationwide. Nearly half of all college students, 12.4 million, are enrolled at 1,167 community colleges, according to the American Association of Community Colleges. (AACC)

The estimated number of students attending community colleges nationwide outweigh the number of students in colleges and universities, yet fewer community college rankings exist.

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The flaws of college rankings systems

The Brookings Institution released a 2015 report titled, “Beyond college rankings: A value-added approach to assessing two-year and four-year schools.” The report notes that students don’t know enough about how institutions of higher learning compare along key dimensions, especially for colleges granting credentials of two years or less, which graduate two out of every five postsecondary graduates.

Moreover, popular rankings focus only on a small fraction of four-year colleges and tend to reward selective institutions over others that contribute and invest most to student success.

Organizations, websites, and magazines that rank schools all claim to have their own criteria to rate schools in a variety of categories that include four-year universities and colleges, and two-year community colleges, technology and liber arts institutes. The creation of additional sub-categories has also been trending, such as best dorms, best education, safest campus, and best sports program are a few examples.

Though most ranking systems have their own methodologies, a closer examination reveals some common traits. To start, college rankings aim to target high school graduating seniors and their parents in the pursuit of higher education.

All rankings are dependent upon college reputation provided by students or alumni, and opinions offered by surrounding school district counselors and neighboring colleges.

Another similarity is key data on campus graduation rates, and annual income of graduates influence a college’s overall ranking. Lastly, each organization explains in a small print reminder that no ranking system is perfect, with a notation marking the many limitations and caveats of the data analysis put into rankings.

How the data is compromised

Global College Search Associates (GCSA) in Chicago offers a client-based, interest-focused approach to the college search and selection process. GCSA helps navigate students through an array of career options achievable through the many majors and programs available throughout various educational institutions in the United States and abroad.

GCSA president Patricia Kranhke explained that during her previous job as an assistant director of admissions at Rutgers University, she was responsible for collecting and calculating much of the data being submitted to the federal government and the various ranking publications, such as U.S. News and World Report.

Kranhke recalled how it became evident to everyone working around her during the collection of data and analysis just how easy it was for information to be manipulated to improve its placement on the rankings.

“This is why so many colleges and universities have stopped submitting their information to the rankings publications, and why U.S. News and World Report is fumbling around in the media trying to push their agenda and change their research methodology,” she said. “The better way to obtain real, unadulterated data is from the federal government.”

How prospective students are affected

Members of the National Association of College Admission Counseling (NACAC) have expressed long withstanding concerns about college ranking publications and internet sites, and suggest that the effects of college rankings are “extensive and ongoing.”

In 2011, the NACAC released results from the National Association for College Admission Counseling Ad Hoc Committee on U.S. News & World Report Rankings Survey.

The survey found that while a majority of college admission counseling professionals hold negative opinions of the U.S. News & World Report undergraduate rankings, colleges still use rankings to market themselves, and the title “Best Colleges” is not an accurate representation of the information in the publication.

The survey also noted despite holding strong negative attitudes toward the U.S. News & World Report rankings, the majority of NACAC members still use the rankings in their admission and advising work.

Information students can trust

The U.S. Department of Education (DOE) introduced the “College Scorecard” in 2015 under the Obama administration. Using data and collecting information from the student loan program and the IRS, the Scorecard is thought to offer better, more accurate results in comparison to data previously available, according to Kranhke.

Before the DOE’s scorecard, average graduate earnings post-graduation was taken from the annual Payscale College Earnings Report that required graduates to volunteer their yearly income.

The College Scorecard data was designed to increase transparency, while aiding students with choosing the right college. The data has also been used to improve college quality by reflecting how well schools are serving students.

However, the College Scorecard Data only reports earnings data for students starting as undergraduates who received federal loans or grants. Federal aid recipients make up roughly half of all college students who generally have lower family incomes than their peers, leaving wide-spread speculation as to the scorecard’s accuracy.

Campus visits are recommended

Disclaimers on student review websites caution users that the corporations make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of its content.

That is just one reason college officials like Diehl recommend visiting a college instead of simply relying on rankings.

“At DCCC, we reach out to future college hopefuls through college fairs and career nights, and recommend they schedule a guidance visit here on campus by calling the admissions office,” Diehl said.

To see DCCC information on the College Scorecard, students should visit https:// col leg es corecard . ed .gov / school/?211927-Delaware_ County_Community_College

Contact Victoria Lavelle at Communitarian@mail.dccc. edu

Not #MeToo

By Shannon Reardon

When the news first broke that Harvey Weinstein had allegedly sexually assaulted many of Hollywood’s leading ladies, actress Alyssa Milano tweeted out, “If you’ve been sexually harassed or assaulted write ‘me too’ as a reply to this tweet.”

Shortly thereafter the trending topic on all social media was #metoo, where women told their stories about being sexually harassed.

With each story I saw posted by family, friends, and colleagues, I would be able to produce a mirroring story.

But I am of the minority that doesn’t care to see these men resigning from their positions in the spotlight.

For the last decade, I have immersed myself into the culture of rock music, while learning and writing about the lives of each of my favorite musicians.

I’ve read and seen images in autobiographies, including hair metal forerunners Mötley Crüe, depicting the ways that their female fans were used and then cast aside. It was common knowledge there were different women, in different cities, every night throwing themselves at band members, crew members, or anyone that would have them.

Naturally, band members would often exploit these situations because they felt they could get away with it. Because, after all, it was silently condoned by the industry.

This is not to say that I am disregarding the actions of the men and women who were actively living by the motto, “sex, drugs, and Rock ‘n’ Roll,” nor am I saying that all women who have been used and abused by musicians deserve what happened to them; however, I can’ t help but wonder why some women, who have recently accused politicians and news media giants, couldn’t have avoided the situations they found themselves in.

Being raised by a single mother, the importance of being able to defend myself in situations where I felt uncomfortable was a concept that was drilled into me. The idea that these women had no way of knowing what an invitation to a hotel room actually meant baffles me.

In the case of The Today Show host Matt Lauer inviting a woman to his hotel room during his coverage of the 2014 Sochi, Russia Winter Olympics, how did she not know what was going to happen?

Or the women who have filed multiple grievances against their abusers, who harassed or assaulted them more than once. After an instance of abuse occurs, there should never be another opportunity to become a repeat offender.

I understand some women feel that they are trapped in these situations though, fearing that they will lose their careers if they don’t comply with what their abusers want. But having the ability to hold another person’s career over her head to make her bend to your will is never okay. No one should have to sacrifice their morals to maintain a job.

As more and more celebrities are revealed as having sexually harassed or abused someone, I think it’s time that we sit and reflect as a society on how to better protect ourselves from potential abusers and to also limit any further accounts by educating ourselves on the potential for abuse and ways to prevent it.

Contact Shannon Reardon at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu 

‘Clybourne Park’ echoes the past of its predecessor

By Emily Steinhardt

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Steve (Matt Morris) escourts deaf wife Betsy (Casey Innes) out after an argument with Russ (Daniel Thach). Photo by Emily Steinhardt

Under the direction of Stephen Smith, nine actors successfully brought to life the story of Clybourne Park, the fall drama that ran from Nov. 9-11 and 16-18.

According to DCCC’s website, “Clybourne Park is a razor-sharp satire about the politics of race, written partly as a prequel/sequel to one of the greatest plays ever written in this country, A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry.” The play takes place in the same house as A Raisin in the Sun in the same suburb of Chicago.

The first act is set in 1959 as a white family is selling their house to an African-American family. Act two jumps to 2009 as the descendants of the Younger family from A Raisin in the Sun are selling the home to a young white couple as the neighborhood experiences gentrification.

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Francine (Breonna Adams) and husband Albert (Terence Stroman) try to leave as an argument breaks out between family and friends. Photo by Emily Steinhardt

The show comes full circle at the end as it flashes back to 1959 and the audience meets Kenneth (Ben Vuocolo), a character that is mentioned throughout the show but never seen. It was the final moment of the show, and it tugged my heart out as I finally understood many subtle things that were discussed in the play.

In both acts, themes of racism, mental illness, gender, disability, and class are examined at large. The actors portrayed these very relevant topics in a believable manner that mirrored how many people still talk about them today.

The show was chalk full of standout moments from each of the actors. Performers played two different characters from the separate acts that echoed each other. They were all very successful in highlighting those similarities, especially Daniel Thach, Matt Morris, Terence Stroman, and Casey Innes.

Set designer Mimi Smith truly transformed the space. Stage crew and actors helped “change” the set during intermission to show the passing of time in the house by taking off a changeable wallpaper among other things.

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Bev (Samantha Angelina) tries to ask Betsy (Casey Innes) if she wants iced tea. Photo by Emily Steinhardt

Costumes were designed by Samantha Angelina, who was also one of the actors in the show. She captured the feeling of both eras, making it easy for the audience to believe they were back in the 1950’s or 2009.

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Lindsey (Casey Innes) talks with Kevin (Terence Stroman) about travelling around the world. Photo by Emily Steinhardt

Stephen Smith directed yet another fantastic play that “examined ways we still need to reckon with our national history which sadly keeps dividing us” as he said in his director’s note.

Bravo to the cast and everyone involved in such an excellent production.

Contact Emily Steinhardt at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

Eagles will soar in the playoffs

By David Schwartz

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Philadelphia Eagles receiver Alshon Jeffery catches a touchdown pass against the Los Angeles Charger defense in the first quarter on Oct. 1 in Carson, Ca. (Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Eagles fans usually have high expectations for Philadelphia’s beloved football team before each season. Prior to this season, expectations were not high enough.

After finishing the 2016 season with a record of 7-9, the Eagles are currently flying high with a 10-1 record, which was captivated by a 37-9 blowout win over the division rival Dallas Cowboys Nov. 19 and a 31-3 abomination over the Chicago Bears Nov. 26. The Eagles have a five game lead over the Cowboys in the NFC East Division now that Dallas is 5-6.

One of the highlights of this current Eagles’ season has been the play of second -year quarterback and MVP candidate Carson Wentz.

So far, he has accumulated a 60 percent completion percentage, 2,657 passing yards, and 28 touchdown passes. Wentz also ran for 253 yards on the ground.

The success of Wentz’s season is due to the amazing effort by his receiving corps, led by tight end Zach Ertz (55 catches, 639 receiving yards, seven touchdowns), wide receiver Alshon Jeffery (43 catches, 619 receiving yards, seven touchdowns), and wide receiver Nelson Agholor (33 catches, 458 receiving yards, six touchdowns).

LeGarrette Blount has been the top rusher so far for the Eagles as he’s ran for 658 yards on 137 carries and two touchdowns.

The running game looks to get even better since acquiring former Miami Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi in a trade on Oct. 31. Ajayi scored his first touchdown for the Eagles on a 46-yard run in their 51-23 blowout win against the Denver Broncos Nov. 5.

As much as the Eagles offense has excelled, the defense has been just as good since allowing an average of only 17.4 points throughout their first 11 games.

Their pass rush has been the anchor of their defensive scheme led by defensive tackler Fletcher Cox (15 tackles, 5.5 sacks) and defensive ends Brandon Graham (34 tackles, seven sacks) and Vinny Curry (32 tackles, three sacks).

Safety Malcolm Jenkins (53 tackles, one sack, two interceptions) has been a tremendous leader for the Eagles’ secondary and cornerbacks Jalen Mills (51 tackles, three interceptions), and Patrick Robinson (35 tackles, three interceptions) have filled the voids at that position while Ronald Darby and Sidney Jones have been recovering from injuries.

Darby played against the Cowboys for the first time since dislocating his ankle in the season opener against the Washington Redskins, which included an interception in the first half.

With fives games left to go in the regular season, it’s safe to say that the Eagles are going to make the playoffs for the first time since 2013, but how far can they go?

To reach the Super Bowl, the Eagles are going to have to play against some pretty good teams in the NFC. The Minnesota Vikings (9-2), New Orleans Saints (8-3), and Los Angeles Rams (8-3) all lead their respective divisions, along with the Carolina Panthers (8- 3), the Atlanta Falcons (7-4), and the Seattle Seahawks (7-4) battling it out for the two wild card spots.

Due to most of the division leaders not having much playoff experience, the Eagles should win the NFC and advance to the Super Bowl.

Prior to the season, my Super Bowl matchup prediction was the Seahawks facing the New England Patriots. That all changed Nov. 9 when Seahawks star cornerback Richard Sherman ruptured his Achilles against the Arizona Cardinals.

Safety Kam Chancellor was also announced out for the rest of the season due to a neck injury a week after the Cardinals game.

Throughout the last few seasons, the Seahawks have been one of the best teams in the NFL due to their amazing secondary featuring Sherman and safeties Chancellor and Earl Thomas to make up “The Legion of Boom.”

Before Sherman and Chancellor got hurt, the Seahawks were the only team that I believed to be in the way of the Eagles reaching the Super Bowl. Wentz and the rest of the Birds have a huge opportunity to dethrone Seattle and represent the NFC, but can the Eagles actually win the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history?

They certainly have a shot.

There are two teams in the AFC that can win the Super Bowl: the Patriots (9-2) and Pittsburgh Steelers (9-2).

The Steelers have one of the best offenses in the NFL with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, running back Le’Veon Bell, and wide receiver Antonio Brown.

The Patriots, with quarterback Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick, should still be the AFC representative in the Super Bowl. This famous head coach-quarterback duo have won five championships together, including last year’s victory against the Falcons.

The Eagles have all of the tools to make a run and win it all, but due to a surplus of experience in New England, my prediction currently stands with the Patriots.

Whatever happens in this season’s playoffs should take nothing away from what the Eagles have been doing so far this season. Wentz has been phenomenal and is a NFL superstar in the making.

He’s a winner, but he’s young. At the age of 24, Wentz will have his first playoff experience and it’s going to be exciting to see if he can handle the pressure in playoff games.

Mark your calendars for Feb. 4th.

Contact David Schwartz at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu

Kathleen Breslin retires after helping thousands to receive scholarships

By Shondalea Wollaston

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Kathleen A. Breslin, vice president of Institutional Advancement and executive director of the Educational Foundation Board, is retiring after 20 years with the college. A party will be held in her honor on Dec. 6.

Kathleen A. Breslin, vice president of Institutional Advancement and executive director of the DCCC Educational Foundation since 1997, will retire at the end of December.

In addition to awarding scholarships to qualified students, a large part of Breslin’s job over the last 20 years has involved listening to the stories of donors looking to make a difference in the lives of a student, while honoring the memory of a loved one.

Having read many scholarship applications over the years, Breslin knows how to pair students to donors.

“My job has been to serve as the filter to both donors and students,” Breslin said.

According to Breslin, one of her most memorable moments was that of Gilberta M. Trani, Ed.D. who, upon her death bed and unable to speak, was able to communicate her wishes to her family, with only a nod, that a scholarship be set up at DCCC.

“Her family went down a long list before she gave the nod,” said Breslin. “She was a nursing student here more than 30 years ago.”

The Gilberta M. Trani, Ed.D Memorial Endowed Scholarship was set up by Dr. Trani’s family and is offered to nursing students.

“Donors inspire me,” Breslin said.

In 2012, after the loss of Breslin’s nephew, a memorial scholarship was established to honor his memory.

The Timothy Finian Hickey Memorial Endowed Scholarship is sponsored by his family, including Breslin, and given to someone interested in the environment. Hickey, who died of adult chicken pox while visiting his son in Nicaragua, was a landscaper who loved nature, having hiked the Appalachian Trail and part of the Pacific Crest Trail.

“Tim just really loved nature and being out in the environment,” Breslin said.

Breslin has many fond memories of both students and donors over the years and can recall each one and even recount their stories.

Breslin’s career began at Villanova University, writing thank you notes for the vice president. Since then, Breslin has worked in all aspects of fundraising, and served as the director of Development for two educational and research institutes: Monell Chemical Senses Center, associated with the University of Pennsylvania, and Weston Institute.

In 1991, Breslin joined Drexel University and became the associate vice president for Institutional Advancement, overseeing corporate and foundation relations, major gifts, annual funds, and alumni relations.

After leaving Drexel in 1997, Breslin found herself at Delaware County Community College.

“When I came to work in August that first day, it was pouring down rain,” Breslin said. “A security officer pulled up, and I thought surely I would get a ticket for parking in the wrong place. To my surprise, he kindly offered me a ride to the front door. That is the moment I knew people here really cared about each other.”

Breslin immediately got to work, starting out with 22 scholarships available to students, which has since increased to 136.

Breslin’s efforts contributed to raising money for big ticket items around campus such as the new STEM Center. She continues to work, raising awareness and funds during events such as Giving Tuesday, to ensure students at DCCC have the best possible resources.

Most recently, Breslin completed a book titled Great Yesterdays, Greater Tomorrows: A Fifty-year history of Delaware County Community College 1967-2017. According to the book, it pays tribute to “the undaunted leadership of a handful of Delaware County educators and visionaries.”

When asked what she would miss the most about her time at DCCC, Breslin replied, “I will truly miss these people.”

Contact Shondalea Wollaston at communitarian@mail.dccc.edu