July 20, 2021

“Gift to the Class of 2021” can be a springboard to achievement

It’s celebration season. Not only has it been a long hard year, but in-person graduations, gatherings and summer travel plans have retuned. Mortar boards, barbeques and balloons hanging from mailboxes throughout our neighborhoods are a welcome reality. There is a palpable level of excitement that comes with the graduation celebrations all over the state.

Here at White Mountains Community College (WMCC), we recently celebrated this year’s graduates and I’m so proud of everyone’s accomplishments. We also know that our graduating high school seniors have shown amazing resilience and should be commended for navigating a journey of uncertainty through their last 16 months of school. Congratulations to them all for their accomplishments and achievements after this uniquely challenging year. This is a time for celebration, and there are some exciting opportunities waiting.

The Foundation for New Hampshire Community Colleges and the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation recently announced a “Gift to the Class of 2021” for high school seniors. This gift is truly amazing. It’s a gift of education, a free three-credit course for the fall that can be used here at WMCC or any of the other six colleges in the Community College System of New Hampshire.

This is a free on-ramp to new pathways for college access and future careers. The commitment includes more than $1 million from the two foundations along with additional support, advising and services from the community colleges to help students across the state. All you need to be eligible is to have graduated from high school in the Class of ‘21. 

Finances can be a barrier for many students, but this great partnership lowers that barrier and opens doors to additional resources. Taking advantage of the gift is like a taking a test drive. It’s a free explorer course that can help redefine goals and interests.

With three campuses, in Berlin, Littleton and North Conway, flexible timing and options for in-person, online or a combination of the two, WMCC courses can fit any schedule. All of our programs fall within a broad academic focus area such as business, healthcare, and STEM, enabling students to try an area of interest. We are here to help with the entire process from the application to advising to choosing a course or program that’s the right fit.  We also have resources that can help with transportation and other needs. We want students to succeed.

Thanks to advisory committees who work with our academic programs, we have relevant curriculum that matches up with the needs of business and industry. We can help students connect with employers in the community.

Already working?  Community college courses are easy to fit around a work schedule.  You can learn while you earn and prepare for the next step up.  For students who can attend full-time, the “Gift to the Class of 2021” will pay for 20 to 25 percent of the costs of your fall semester.

This offer is as good and as simple as it sounds. This is truly a great time to start college.  The “Gift to the Class of 2021” is a major opportunity and we are ready to help you seize it. 

For more information on the “Gift to the Class of 2021,” please visit www.givenhcc.org.

Dr. Charles Lloyd is the president of White Mountains Community College (WMCC). Located in Berlin with satellite campuses in Littleton and North Conway, WMCC  is one of seven colleges in the Community College System of New Hampshire and offers Associate Degree and Certificate programs, plus training options, preparing students for 21st century job opportunities, as well as transfer pathways to four-year colleges and universities.