While I was still in the military, one of my professors said to get involved, and I wrote “Get Involved” in big letters across the top of my page. My friend made fun of me for it, but it has been one of the best pieces of advice I’ve taken yet. No matter what it is, school, relationships, or work, the best way to succeed is to get involved! Getting involved at Central Piedmont Community College has been an excellent decision in my life. I am a veteran and decided to involve myself with the Center for Military Families and Veterans last semester when I returned to college after a decade long hiatus . In doing this, I became part of a support network that feels like a family. The fact that we’re all veterans or have family who served helps a lot, but it really boils down to the fact that it is a close caring group of people who will do anything they can to look out for each other. Being involved with this family like community has pushed me to do well in class, given me the opportunity to meet a lot of really amazing people, and I was even able to obtain a work study position within the Center. It has really helped me feel purpose and made my time here enjoyable and successful.
Military Veteran and CPCC student
THE Geek Fest, a celebration of innovation and technology, is coming to CPCC’s Levine Campus on Thursday, November 12th and will feature the latest in technology; creativity and innovation; and career and professional opportunities. The greater Charlotte, Matthews, and regional community are encouraged to participate in this free event.
Attendees will interact with exciting new technologies, meet innovative companies and learn from industry experts, and explore many of the programs that CPCC has to offer. This year’s event will highlight a variety of exciting topics, including launching a start-up business, product development, social media, programming and software development, animation, automotive technology, engineering, mobile computing, instructional technology, cosmetology, and much more. Activities will include guest speakers, an exhibit hall, demonstrations, activities, video games, music, contests, food and door prizes.
Don’t miss this must-attend event that will inspire you to meet other creative and innovative people and to discover, and embrace, your inner geek! For more information, visit our website at www.THEGeekFest.com
WHEN: Thursday, November 12, 2015, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
WHERE: CPCC Levine Campus, 2800 Campus Ridge Rd., Matthews, N.C.
The International Student Experience
The decision to leave your family and friends to pursue a higher education outside of your country can be a difficult and long process filled with a lot of stress as well as excitement and hope. Hope that everything goes according to plan and your sometimes very high expectations are all met. Language barriers and culture shock is something almost every international student will experience. It can be very challenging and frustrating especially during the first semester, where we usually face problems such as adjusting to the new place, getting to meet other students and the stress over our academic performance. But the determination and the need to quench our thirst for knowledge as well as to further our career options in our various fields of choice, makes us power through all the obstacles and hurdles we may encounter.
As an international student it can be very lonely when you don’t have friends and a support group, which is why getting involved in the school life with student associations such as the International Student Association and Student Government Association helps immensely. Not only do these associations connect us with the community we live in and help us experience our host country, but they are also meant to connect us with other positive and goal oriented students who support each other academically and socially. Through these associations, I have met some of my best friends and gained relationships that I will treasure forever. The opportunity to increase your career prospects while living abroad is a great one; it is to be enjoyed but also taken very seriously, as a Bulgarian saying goes, “seize the opportunity by the beard, for it is bald behind.”
Seedy Njie is from Gambia, West Africa and has been at CPCC for one year. He’s currently enrolled in the Associate of Arts program, and wishes to transfer to complete his Bachelor’s degree and continue his studies to become a Human Rights Lawyer in his home country. In his free time, Seedy loves going on road trips with friends and watching soccer games.
Prior to being a student at CPCC, I was always known as the quite or introvert one out of all my friends. I would often say “I’d like to be more adventurous,” but I did nothing to explore that aspect of myself. For an example I never joined clubs or got involved in extra-curricular activities in high school, because I was afraid to fail. But all that soon changed once I was asked to join the Student Government Association at the Cato Campus. Once I was accepted into the organization, I dived right into it, not really knowing the magnitude of how much I was about to gain from this experience. Immediately, I had to learn how to work with others, problem solve, and lead.
Looking back on my overall experience as an involved student, I would say it was one of the most important and necessary things I could have done as a student. Being involved helped me grow into a more responsible student. I noticed I took my education even more serious just to maintain the appropriate grade point average to continue to be active in the organization. Also, I observed that I grew into the habit of working with others and that helped me become closer to my goal in being less introverted. This helped me in class when I would have to do presentations or even just answer an instructor’s question.
Lastly, being involved taught me about the campus/college. I was aware of all resources provided for me and it drew me closer to meeting as well as, getting to know the staff of the college. As a student I found it was most helpful to know who to turn to when I had questions or concerns. It was refreshing to have advisors know me personally and by name. All in all, I have to give thanks to my peers and the club advisors of SGA, for teaching and supporting me through the journey of being a newly involved student. I plan to continue to stay involved and I assure others that it is most certainly worth giving it a try.
JaKeyla Wallace, Cato Student Life
Imagine you just graduated from college or will be graduating in a couple of weeks and you’re feeling the anticipation and excitement of landing that first job in your field. You’ve cleaned up your resume, filled out numerous applications, written countless cover letters, and even persuaded your most challenging, yet respected instructor to write you a reference letter. You are prepared….or so you think. The awaited day has arrived and you go into your first interview. Packed with your credentials and armed with the perfect speech about your academic success, you enter the waiting room of the office suite and find yourself surrounded by other recent college graduates with similar credentials, grades, and that perfect smile. Reality hits and you begin to ask yourself some questions. What makes me different or makes me stand out from the rest? What have I done or accomplished that makes me the one to hire?
These and other questions quickly run through your head as you anxiously take your seat beside your competition. Just as you begin to sit, however, a cool breeze comes over you. You take a deep breath and a little confident smile creeps upon your face. Why? You have what companies and organizations are looking for and needing. You have a history and a record of being a team player, motivator, critical thinker, relationship builder, planner and organizer, record keeper, and most importantly, an effective leader. Your years in college were not only spent mastering your subject matter, but you learned how to make a positive difference in an organization and in the greater community and learned how to work with others to accomplish amazing things. You learned these important lessons by getting involved in student clubs and organizations, doing community service, attending the annual Student Leadership Conference, or participating in one of the leadership programs CPCC has to offer. While you were in college, you went beyond self, and wanted to make your college, your campus, and/or your community a better place for others. You learned leadership, and so in this waiting room you smile, sit confidently, and clearly know why you are the best candidate.
-Davis Mahatha, Student Life Coordinator at the Cato Campus