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News Release

Date: August 13, 2007
Media Contact: Elizabeth Homan, 240-567-7970; Steve Simon, 240-567-7952

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Student Appointed to Montgomery College Board of Trustees
Honors Student Cristian E. Barrera Named to One-Year Post

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Montgomery College student Cristian E. Barrera has been appointed to serve a one-year term as the student representative on the community college’s Board of Trustees. Barrera, who attends the Rockville Campus, fills the seat formerly held by Vanessa Coleman, whose term as the student trustee expired on July 1.

A native of El Salvador, Barrera is a member of Montgomery College’s Montgomery Scholars honors program and currently holds a 3.81 grade point average. This July, Barrera joined fellow Scholars at the University of Cambridge in England, where he attended summer college classes. This month, he is volunteering at Hôpital des Enfants de Rabat, a children’s hospital in Rabat, Morocco, as part of Cross-Cultural Solutions, a nonprofit international volunteer organization. He is teaching English to children suffering from asthma, diabetes, and cancer and creating recreational and educational activities for them. The Silver Spring resident also has a long history of volunteering in Montgomery County at community events, a local park, and a nursing home as well as working as a student tutor.

“I want to make a difference,” said Barrera, when asked why he chose to pursue the position of student trustee. “I personally think that advocating for the college and my fellow classmates is the first step. I am willing and ready to work hard to make the college a place where not only ‘endless possibilities’ exist, but also one in which they are at the fingertips of every student.”

At Montgomery College, Barrera has participated in various student clubs and sports teams, including the Student Ambassadors, the Bollywood Club, the Cross Country Team and Tennis Team. This fall, he will become the vice president of the College’s Rockville Campus chapter of Phi Theta Kappa honor society. During the past spring semester, Barrera interned at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum, where he assisted Dr. Roger D. Launius, space history curator, on the research for his book “Project Apollo in American Myth and Memory.”

Attending Montgomery College is a family affair for Barrera. His older sister, Brenda, currently attends the community college and studies in the general honors program. Barrera’s goal is to graduate with his sister next May.

Members of the Montgomery College Board of Trustees, who are appointed by the Governor of Maryland, exercise general oversight for the College and are empowered to establish policies for implementing the College’s mission.

The Board’s responsibilities include setting the salaries and tenure requirements for the College president, faculty, and other employees of the College, as well as establishing entrance requirements, course offerings and tuition rates. Members serve six-year terms, with the exception of the student member, who serves for one year.

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Montgomery College is a public, open admissions community college with campuses in Germantown, Rockville, and Takoma Park/Silver Spring, plus workforce development/continuing education centers and off-site programs throughout Montgomery County, Md. The College serves nearly 60,000 students a year, through both credit and noncredit programs, in more than 100 areas of study.

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