Transitioning to Civilian

Jason:

This is my first blog so be gentle please. But first a little about me. My name is Jason Moore. I joined the army in 2010 as a 13B or other words knows as Field Artillery Crewman. I was stationed at 101st Airborne Division after basic training and AIT (Advanced Initial Training). I was shortly deployed to Afghanistan in the Kunar province for a year.  I spent 3 years in the army and got out due to a medical reason. When I got out I thought I would just go back to my normal civilian life but it wasn’t easy.

I decided to try and start school to occupy my free time and thought again “this will be easy, I’ve been through the military training, I got this in the bag.”  I was wrong, though. This is a completely different world than I thought. If it wasn’t for the great resources the Veteran center had such as peer tutors, a private place to study (the lounge) and instructors like I had (Joe Slonka, and Richard Corbetta) and all the others in the paralegal program, I believe I will would have quit, but I’m glad I didn’t. But I’m not the only one. DJ will tell you his story now.

DJ:

My name is Daniel Cunningham, like Jason this is my first time writing in a blog format so please be understanding to the both of us. I joined the military back in 2005 as a 91w at the time, it is now known as a 68w or medic. My time in the military was very diverse. I went from Ft. Hood where I had my first deployment to Iraq with 4th ID. When I got back I was put with 1st ID 1/26 where I went on my second deployment in 2008 to Afghanistan. After that I did a stent in Korea and finally came back to 1/26 at Ft Knox, where I went on my final deployment which ended with me being medically retired from the military in 2014.

Coming out of the military was extremely hard on me. I did not want out and I had fought my medical board for almost two years before I finally resigned to my fate. When I first got out I lived with my family here in Colorado trying to figure out what I should do with my life now. My life goals of doing 20 years in the military and then going over to the police force were no longer possible, so I spiraled into a state of depression. Finally, my wife had had enough of me and forced me to go to school to find myself again. Since then I have been a lot happier and have finally chosen a career path for myself, geophysical engineering, which feels good. I believe that being around the fellow Veterans here at ACC and hearing their stories has helped me move through the transition and find a new life outside of the military.

ACC can be a great place for each of our Veterans coming back. We want each of you to find your place here at ACC – join us in the Veterans Lounge, stop by a Student Veterans Association meeting in the fall or use any of the great resources. While it will not always be easy to make a transition, by making connections here at ACC, you’ll have an overall better time here and hopefully a successful experience. You can contact us at jmoore249@student.cccs.edu and dcunningham23@student.cccs.edu

by Jason Moore and DJ Cunningham

8 Reasons to Choose Community College

ACC Communication Students

ACC Communication Students

Community college is “one of America’s best-kept secrets” according to Second Lady Dr. Jill Biden. In the past, the stigma surrounding attending community colleges has overshadowed its strengths, but that’s beginning to change. Community colleges have a three-pronged mission: prepare students for transfer to four-year institutions, provide vocational training, and serve the community through continuing education efforts. It’s through the accomplishment of this mission that community colleges succeed, but there are several reasons to enroll that make attending community college a great choice.

  1. Lower costs
    As the cost of higher education continually increases, the prospect of attending a traditional four-year institution is out of reach for many. But as US high school graduation rates improve, more people are choosing to attend community college to efficiently begin their college careers. On average, community college tuition costs 90% less than four-year for-profit institutions, and 84% less than four-year non-profit schools.
  2. Flexibility
    Community colleges are designed for people from varied backgrounds. Flexible course schedules meet the needs of part-time and full-time students, such as classes offered in the daytime and evening. Online courses make pursuing secondary education more accessible with classes you can take from home or at the office.
  3. Two-year degrees, certificates and continuing to a four-year institution
    Some community colleges offer bachelor’s degrees independently or with a four-year institution. This helps to bring higher education opportunities to more students, especially nontraditional students who may not be able to travel to a four-year institution to pursue an advanced degree. At Arapahoe Community College, we offer nearly 100 degree and certificate programs to help you succeed.
  4. Small classes
    Class sizes tend to be small, which means one-on-one interaction with the teacher, the opportunity to have questions answered in class, and more meaningful relationships with classmates. Smaller classes enable teachers to adapt lessons to the needs of the class, which can promote more productive lessons.
  5. Dedicated teachers
    Community college instructors have traditionally dedicated minimal time to research and scholarship and have instead focused on teaching. This gives the benefit of having instructors who are entirely focused on what is taught in the classroom without having to spend their time producing articles for scholarly journals.
  6. Adaptive course offerings
    Community colleges adapt their curriculum to the needs of their communities.  For example, many community colleges began offering high-tech coursework as early as 2000 to meet the demand for this type of education. Enrolling in classes to improve your workplace skills in technology and computers will increase your employability.
  7. Variety of programs
    A key to success at college is studying a course that interests you so you remain engaged and passionate about your studies. The degree and certificate programs at ACC cover a wide range of academic, business and technical fields of study at affordable tuition rates so you can pursue your passions without going broke.
  8. Activities outside the classroom
    A key element of the four-year college experience is activities beyond in-class education. Student Life at Arapahoe Community College coordinates activities and events such as movie showings, guest speakers and music performances. Participating in clubs and organizations can expand your network while enriching your college experience. At ACC, we also offer community resources such as community education, fitness center, daycare, and a library to benefit the community, even those not enrolled in the college.
ACC Nusing Students volunteering for Project C.U.R.E.

ACC Nusing Students volunteering for Project C.U.R.E.

The community college experience is not to be overlooked. In addition to the tremendous tuition savings, community college is an excellent choice to pursue a degree, certificate or to improve your skills in an area of your choice. With more people learning about all that community colleges have to offer, they may not be one of America’s best-kept secrets for long.

 

 

Sources:

Community College Education. By: Clapp, Marlene, Research Starters: Education (Online Edition), 2015

http://www.aol.com/article/2015/11/05/dr-jill-biden-explains-why-community-college-is-one/21259058/

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/30/education/30collegeweb.html
The % in this post are from the NY Times piece: “At public 2-year colleges, the average tuition was $2527. This compares to four year for profit schools where the average tuition is 15661. Average tuition at a four-year non-profit was 21,324.”

http://headsupamerica.us/

https://www.arapahoe.edu/