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Montgomery College Student Success Stories

 

An Education Deferred Reaps Gold for MC Alumna
Montgomery College Today, Fall '05

Montgomery College alumna Aimee TootseyIt’s never too late to go back to college. Just ask 37-year-old Montgomery College alumna Aimee Tootsey, who came to MC in 2001 after putting her college education on hold for 13 years to raise a family.

Tootsey transferred this fall to Hood College in Frederick, Md. Before she settled on Hood, however, the 2005 MC graduate weighed generous scholarship offers from Hood, and from McDaniel College in Westminster, Md. It’s no wonder both colleges wanted Tootsey. After all, she excelled in everything she took on while at MC. Through MC’s Paul Peck Humanities Institute partnership with the Smithsonian Institution, she interned twice at the Smithsonian Center for Education and Museum Studies.

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Outriding the Storm
Insights, Fall '05

Casha JonesReluctant to evacuate her home in Belle Chasse, La., 18-year-old Casha Jones shoved two pairs of jeans and a T-shirt into a bag and got into the family car that Sunday morning. She was expecting to be back home in a day or two. One week later, holding back tears, Casha stood before curious classmates in Professor Darren Smith’s math class on Montgomery College’s Germantown Campus as one of the new students displaced from New Orleans.

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Gentle Dentistry
Insights, Spring ’05

Dr. Usa Bunnag ’90Her digital pictures from northern Thailand resemble scenes out of National Geographic or Conde Nast Traveler—breathtaking mountain peaks shrouded in mist, lush tropical vegetation, straw-topped huts, and wild pigs by the roadside. Not to be mistaken for an American tourist, Dr. Usa Bunnag ’90, a Bethesda dentist, travels with forceps, medications, a supply of toothbrushes, T-shirts, and loads of goodwill— the necessary accoutrements for her missions.

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Molinolo Named to All-USA Academic First Team
Insights, Spring '05

Gabriela MolinoloTo those in the Montgomery College community who know Gabriela Molinolo, it wasn’t surprising that the 24-year-old honors student has been recognized for her academic excellence by being named to the First Team of the 2005 All-USA Community and Junior College Academic Team. Only 20 students a year receive this honor, which includes a cash award of $2,500. Molinolo’s achievement was announced in Boston, Mass., at the April convention of the American Association of Community Colleges. Sponsored by Phi Theta Kappa, the international honor society for two-year colleges, USA Today, and the American Association of Community Colleges, the annual award recognizes a handful of outstanding two-year college students nationwide.

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

Roger Lusby“I always made sure I had a good team of CPAs and lawyers on my side, and I only looked for sizeable deals that required minimal investment.”

Roger Lusby recently celebrated a 50th anniversary as an MC Junior College alum (class of 1955). Self-employed since January 1958 to the present, Lusby has been involved in insurance, real estate, construction, and mortgaging.

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

Sharrod Robertson“Do your research: Whatever you want to do, find out about your competitors, and the positives and negatives about your industry. Find people who can help you make it happen. If you believe in what you want, don’t give up.”

While studying business at MC, Sharrod Robertson got his first job in a bank through a campus employment services office. He transferred to Howard University to complete a finance degree, then worked in the corporate accounting department at Marriott International. Later, he owned a Subway franchise in Rockville, Md. As manager, Robertson worked from 9 a.m. to midnight for two years, until he and his partners sold the business for a 50 percent profit. Currently, Robertson is a real estate broker serving Montgomery and Prince George’s counties.

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

Jonathon Kendall“You have to be malleable or you won’t make it. One thing I remember from engineering class at MC is Professor O’Brien’s favorite adage: ‘The only thing constant is change.’ I might not use Ohm’s Law from Engineering 101 directly in my work, but the concepts I learned at MC—how to think in an engineering way and how to understand the process of physics—have always been valuable.”

After a first attempt at running a new business failed, Jonathon Kendall reconsidered his plans—not that he would succeed, but how he would succeed. After a self-imposed “apprenticeship” lasting 10 years, followed by two successful mergers in 1988 and 1993, Kendall found himself atop a $100-million company traded on NASDAQ with 1,000 employees nationwide.

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College’s Students Transfer Across the State—and Across the Nation
Montgomery College Today, Spring '05

Montgomery College alumna Evelyn RojasWhen it came time to choose a transfer school, Montgomery College 2004 graduate Lisa Ku faced almost an embarrassment of riches. Should she accept a scholarship from the University of Virginia or George Washington University? Or should she enroll at William and Mary or Georgetown?

Levis Koloko ’04 faced a similar dilemma. Georgia Tech accepted him, but the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, offered him a full scholarship and a coveted place in the Meyerhoff Scholars program. Evelyn Rojas ’02 wavered between Cornell and the University of Pennsylvania, as she considered scholarship offers from Washington College and University of Maryland College Park. Ku, Koloko, and Rojas typify the types of students who contribute to Montgomery College’s track record of placing students at four-year schools across the state of Maryland— and across the nation.

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Role Model: Learning to Help Himself, Student/Staffer Now Helps Others
Montgomery College Today, Spring '05

Romeo ThorntonRomeo Thornton works the phones in the Career and Transfer Center at Montgomery College’s Takoma Park Campus. He expertly fields calls from anxious students and parents, helps walk-ins with their problems, assists students on the computer, and does general office work. His supervisor, Career and Transfer Center Coordinator Roberta Buckberg, thinks Thornton walks on water. “He’s the most efficient, reliable student employee I have. He’s remarkably caring and concerned about other people,” she said. “He’s a rock; he has an amazing work ethic. I feel perfectly comfortable leaving the Center in his hands.” Thornton, 28, learned responsibility the hard way: he is both visually- and hearing impaired, and relies on nobody but himself.

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

Rosco Lockhart“Survival in a competitive business requires figuring out what each customer values most and providing that: quality, service, price -- or all three.”

Rosco Lockhart bought his first printing press in 1988, which he set up in a spare bedroom at home. Today, Phoenix Printing, a Rockvillebased, full-service printing company, employs 15 people and averages $1.6 million in annual sales, with a customer base of nearly 1,000 companies.

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

Fredys Cedillo“I always wanted to own my own business - it was my American dream. Before I got it started, I took the time to prepare. At Montgomery College, I learned how to write a business plan and how to manage a business.”
At 25, Honduran immigrant Fredys Cedillo owns and operates a successful food market specializing in international products, which opened July 2003 with help from the Center for Entrepreneurship (CFE) in the College’s Macklin Business Institute.

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Acting on a Leap of Faith
Insights, Spring ’05

Ray Crucet ’54Long before Montgomery College’s mission was known as “changing lives,” the Bliss Electrical School set the stage for the College—and for Ray Crucet ’54. Born in New York City, Crucet spent most of his childhood in the paradise of the Panama Canal Zone. He’d occasionally return to his birthplace with his father to see a show or the Rockettes. The stage left an indelible impression, which resurfaced during his retirement years. Crucet’s dream was to become an electrician. He secured a job with the Navy in air conditioning mechanics. When he became frustrated with the inability to cut through the “good ol’ boy system” to become an electrician, a trigonometry teacher recommended he attend a “very famous old Navy school during World War II—the Bliss Electrical School.

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

Peggy WightAsk questions. When we were starting out, I had to ask a lot of questions, and people
were always willing to take the time to show us a better way.”

In 1985, Peggy Wight and husband Ralph started their Uncle Ralph’s Not Yet Famous Cookies business from scratch. Encouraged by friends and family, they doctored their favorite cookie recipe, and started selling it “in town.” Now operating out of a 22,000- square-foot facility, the Wights’ cookie empire sells approximately 16 million cookies and brownies each year, with $4.5 million in annual sales (2004).

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Bright Ideas
Insights, Spring ’05

“If you’re creative enough, and have a desire to do something, you can make it.” - Robert “Bob” Kolonia ’59

In 1975, Kolonia invented a better axe, an idea that came to him one day while chopping wood in his back yard. At its peak, his company produced and sold more than 2,000 Chopper1 Axes every day. Distribution was handled through major retailers such as Sears, J.C.Penney, and K-Mart. He and his wife Joan sold the business in 1989, and later repurchased the rights to sell it online.

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Not the Retiring Type
Insights, Fall ’04

Tom Logan ’73On June 30, 2004, Tom Logan ’73 took the long drive home from Montgomery College’s Rockville Campus, and entered the unfamiliar world of retirement. Would it feel strange to not drive back to MC the next day as he had, religiously, for well more than 30 years? The answer was “yes,” it did feel strange. But it also felt very right to a man who first set foot on the campus as a student in the early 1970s, and who had worked at MC ever since. “I knew too many people who had worked—because they loved the job—longer than they should have. I wanted to retire when I was healthy, and I’m glad I did. I can go out and play with the dogs, and do things that require big chunks of time. I’m having a great time, and I feel good.”

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An Illustrious Career
Insights, Fall ’04

Ty WilsonOther than the new sign—School of Art and Design at Montgomery College— the one-story brick building that houses the former Maryland College of Art and Design (MCAD) in a Georgia Avenue hollow just minutes from the Beltway looks the same as it has for years. But the sign tells only part of the story. The consolidation of MCAD, also a two-year institution, with Montgomery College in September represents nearly 80 years of learning and teaching, two impressive traditions that have launched accomplished careers of thousands of grads. Ty Wilson, who graduated from MCAD in the late 1970s, is one whose tale is worth hearing. An illustrator living in New York City, Wilson has been honing his art since the age of six and a kindergarten experience that changed his life. When he passed off a drawing by his brother as his own in kindergarten Wilson took the embarrassment of the lie as motivation, committing himself to learning to draw—and to never lying again.

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Out of the Ravages of War, a Young Iranian Girl Discovered Her Future Vocation
Montgomery College Today, Fall 04

Niloo Ghaemi MC alumna Niloo Ghaemi discovered her vocation in a bomb cellar in Iran. In the winter of 1987, Ghaemi and her extended family evacuated their homes and took refuge from the Iraqi bombing of Tehran in the basement of her uncle’s knitting factory which had been converted into a bomb shelter. Out of boredom, Ghaemi would wriggle under the huge textile-making machines, gazing up at the intricate gears and bolts. “How could anything so huge make something so nice and delicate?” she recalls thinking to herself. “Someday, I want to create these gigantic, powerful machines.” The factory helped Ghaemi escape the sirens, the bombs, and the war as she invisioned her future. “I dreamed of the day when I would get the opportunity to study and understand such machines. Those thoughts have carried me to where I am today,” she said.

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An Architectural Mixture
Insights, Fall ’04

Hugh Newell Jacobsen ’48For someone who’s called a minimalist, his portfolio brims with details; for a man of modest physical stature, he’s reached iconic proportions in the world of architecture. Hugh Newell Jacobsen ’48 has spent 45 years building on his passion for pure architectural design. “If I’m remembered for anything, it will be that,” Jacobsen says, pointing to 136 sheets of line drawings for his latest building project—a $16 million museum he designed specifically to house and display 40 French impressionist paintings at the University of Oklahoma, an acquisition the university openly declares “the most important collection of art given to an American public university,” valued at $78 million. The building’s exterior is Texas limestone, the “color of French unsalted butter.”

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Center Stage- Barbara Walsh ’75
Insights, Spring ’04

Barbara Walsh '75Fifty-five Montgomery College alumni, faculty, retirees, and friends anxiously await the curtain’s rise to see “their own” Barbara Walsh ’75, cast as Velma Von Tussle in Broadway’s Hairspray. Expecting the attractive brunette to appear, the group is surprised to see her as a platinum blonde with “big” hair. Despite her role as a conniving, manipulative mother of a high school student, the MC crowd is filled with pride.

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Sky Fishing
Insights, Spring ’04

Mike Dupuy ’81Imagine driving 90 miles per hour across the Texas plains, chased by local law enforcement, trying to catch a hawk. Master falconer and MC alumnus Mike Dupuy ’81 calls it “sky fishing,” where the blue sky is like water, and the red-tailed hawk, a big game fish riding the currents above, not below. He throws the bait through the sunroof of his car, not boat, and ultimately relies on a few thin tethers to ensnare the hawk’s talons. With luck, he might catch up with one of these masterful birds of prey.

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Keeping the Order Living
Insights, Spring ’04

Dr. Linda HandyThe words dance across the glass doors of the display case in the school foyer—devoid, diffuse, desecrate, despot. Written out on stenciled hearts cut from varying shades of lavender construction paper, they are a reminder of what makes the Chelsea School unique. “A lot of times, kids with learning differences have a very strong, creative right brain approach to things,” explains Dr. Linda Handy, academic head of the Chelsea School, which educates students with language-based learning difficulties, or dyslexia. “Using a multisensory approach to learning is so effective. When we use different colored outliners and different colored folders for [student] organization, that speaks to the creative part of their brain.”

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Mapping a Path to Success: MC Students, Alums Find Their Place In Applied Geography Program
Montgomery College Today, Spring '04

Craig Winn and Siddharth MathurSiddharth Mathur is a map guy. Ever since he was little, Mathur loved studying maps: street maps, historical maps, aeronautical charts, any type of map. His fascination with maps led him to the applied geography program at Montgomery College, and ultimately to an associate’s degree in applied geography and geographic information systems (GIS).

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Interior Motives
Insights, Spring ’04

Gregory Wigle’92Ever since he was a child, interior designer Gregory Wigle’92 felt drawn to his currenta vocation. What he could not have known was how many detours his path to success would take. From a stint at college following high school to working as a researcher at the National Institutes of Health, from horse trainer to florist, the co-founder of the Rhosymedre Design Group in Frederick, Md., discovered the direction of his true rite of passage at Montgomery College.

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College’s Federal Work-Study Students Give—and Get a Lot Back in Return
Montgomery College Today, Fall '03

Marvin Brooks works one on one with a student at Gap Buster Learning Center in Silver Spring.The smile on a boy’s face reveals his joy after conquering a difficult reading assignment. Little girls giggle upon mastering a tricky mathematical puzzle. A newly arrived immigrant carries on a rudimentary conversation in English with confidence. Montgomery College students who participate in the Federal Work-Study (FWS) Community Service Program witness these small victories every day. In 1994, Congress mandated that institutions receiving federal work-study funds spend a portion of their federal allocation on community service activities. “The community service program made it possible for the kids in our program to receive one-on-one tutoring in reading and math,” said Dr. Lori Melman, executive director of Family Learning Solutions, a Silver Spring nonprofit offering tutorial services for children.

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A Musical Journey
Insights, Fall ’03

Tori AmosRock vocalist and pianist Tori Amos loves allegory, but not exclamatory punctuation. “I have one request, please, don’t use any exclamation points,” Amos pleads without further explanation at a recent interview, where she talks about her life, her music, and her experience as a student at Montgomery College. Figuring out the significance of the musical and lyrical metaphors fashioned by this petite 40-year-old-with high cheek bones, a creamy complexion, and straight flaming hair has been a fascination of fans since she broke into the popular music scene more than a decade ago. As an artist, Amos is a conjurer and medicine woman. She has created a percussive, ethereal sound that is both critically and popularly acclaimed. In an industry that often sacrifices integrity for a bottom line, she adheres firmly to her own artistic vision. “[This industry] is not for the faint of heart,” she quips, noting that talent is not sufficient to ensure survival. “There is another skill you have to have—you have to be able to play a mean game of chicken.”

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A Sense of Pride: Brother and Sister Make It Work
Montgomery College Today, Fall '03

Karla and Reyes Rodriguez with their friend and mentor Anna Perez.Karla and Reyes Rodriguez wanted to pay for college themselves. So the brother and sister from El Salvador each worked 30 to 40 hours a week, much of the time at the offices of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, while attending Montgomery College-Germantown as full-time students.

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Alumnus Overcomes Obstacles in Quest for Education
Montgomery College Today, Fall '03

Gilles-Arnaud Bleu-LaineAt the age of 18, Gilles-Arnaud Bleu-Laine packed his bags and left his parents and his home behind. Bleu-Laine grew up in Ivory Coast, a West African country, but his parents believed he would find better schools in the United States. To receive his degree, Bleu-Laine struggled with many issues. He wrestled with the English language, realizing too late that his classes in Ivory Coast were inadequate. Worse, civil war broke out back home. As Bleu-Laine tried to concentrate on his studies, he learned rebels seized and vandalized the family home in the west. His parents stayed protected in the family’s second home, but their financial support to Bleu-Laine was cut off. Bleu-Laine turned to MC-Rockville Professor Don Day and Mary Ann Beatty, dean of student development, for help. Both Day and Beatty urged Bleu-Laine to continue his education while they investigated scholarship options. Ultimately, a Montgomery College Foundation scholarship paid for his final semester at Montgomery College.

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Drawing on Life
Insights, Fall ’03

Richard Thompson

What is so funny about the dog days of August in Washington? Where is the humor in someone’s frequent craving for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich? For most people, these common occurrences at best pass unnoticed and at worst evoke complaint. To illustrator and cartoonist Richard Thompson, these routine situations serve as raw material that he transforms into a moment of humor.

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The Culture-Bending Paintings of Iona Rozeal Brown: Takoma Park Grad’s Artwork Gains Notice on Both Coasts
Montgomery College Today, Spring '03

Iona Rozeal BrownEver since graduating from Yale with a master of fine arts last spring, MC alumna Iona Rozeal Brown has not caught her breath. A few short months after graduating, her paintings were on display at a solo art exhibit in Venice, Ca. and in New York City, where they received positive reviews from the Los Angeles Times, which praised her “work of great intellectual energy.” The New York Times described her paintings as “having punch-line issues of their
own…. Colorful and well executed…” As if the newspaper kudos weren’t enough, the Studio Museum in Harlem bought one of her paintings from the New York show.

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Macklin Scholars Gain Real-World Business Experience
Montgomery College Today, Spring '03

Huang DuongMontgomery College’s Macklin Scholars -- sophomore honors business students -- recognize opportunity when it comes their way, even if it comes at the expense of their limited down time.
As interns at area corporations, Macklin Scholars learn valuable lessons about employer expectations, job performance, employee behavior, corporate cultures, and commuting as they try out careers in their declared majors and “beef up”their resumes. Meanwhile, back on campus, their business professors garner feedback about workplace and employer needs, which help them tailor programs to the changing needs of employers.

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New Program Opens Doors to College Students Facing Multiple Obstacles
Montgomery College Today, Spring '03

Rosetta Nesbitt (right)Rosetta Nesbitt never thought she would attend college. “College just wasn’t a dream for me because I was a special education student. The doors were shutting all around me,” she said. The doors opened for Nesbitt, a Silver Spring resident, when she found out about Student Support Services (SSS), a federally funded grant program at Montgomery College that helps low income students to stay in college and ultimately, pursue their baccalaureate degrees. Participants, who also include students with physical or learning disabilities, receive intensive tutoring at no cost, advising, mentoring, and remedial instruction, as well as career and transfer advising, and help with financial aid applications. Students also attend workshops on study skills, goal-setting, and classroom survival techniques. And, since many students in the program have never been exposed to cultural activities, they also enjoy free admission to plays or concerts. According to Nesbitt, the key to her success is her adviser, Francesca Coretto, who is with her every step of the way. “It’s so supportive here, way beyond the norm, she said. “It feels like family.”

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Investing in the Future
Insights, Spring ’03

Patricia LopezPatricia Lopez knows first hand what a life changing experience it is to receive a scholarship to attend Montgomery College. As a high school senior who had recently immigrated from El Salvador with her family in 1988, Lopez understood the value of higher education to her future success, but her family could not afford to pay for her college education. She was preparing to defer her academic plans when a guidance counselor at Winston Churchill High School selected her for a Montgomery College Board of Trustees Scholarship.

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The Doctor is In
Insights, Spring ’03

Dr. Winifred King ’77Lifetime Television’s Dr. Winifred King ’77 recalls herself as a shy and sheltered young woman when she began attending Montgomery College at 16, just after graduating from high school on an accelerated schedule. While the College was only a matter of miles from her family and her home in Wheaton, it was a world away from her experience of being a bookish and reserved young woman in high school. “I was a scared little 16 year old, but I was also fascinated by the freedom and opportunity to make my own choices,” says King, in a phone interview from Los Angeles in between tapings of Speaking of Women’s Health, a popular talk show she co-hosts on Lifetime Television. “Montgomery College gave me the platform from which to launch my dreams.”

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Heroes Trained Here
Insights, Spring ’03

Doug WrightOnce upon a time, firefighters were an unheralded group. But 9/11 changed everything, with a new awareness of the extreme sacrifices these heroes make every day and of the vitally important role they play in ensuring public safety. At Montgomery College, prospective “heroes” can enroll in degree and certificate programs in fire science management and fire and arson investigation.

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His Life After Blair Witch
Insights, Fall ’02

Eduardo Sanchez ’90Eduardo Sanchez ’90 does not have much of an ego for a celebrated movie director. Oh, the lanky, gentle-mannered co-director of the runaway blockbuster Blair Witch Project has ambitions as big as any of his peers among America’s emerging young movie directors. Yet, he is equally content to bounce his 21-month-old daughter Bianca Bella on his knee or to unload railing that he bought to repair fencing on his West Virginia property.

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A Developing Career
Insights, Fall ’02

Stephen Agricola ’86Alum Stephen Agricola ’86 was working a dead-end bartending job when fate sent him a messenger in the person of Montgomery College’s Tom Logan. Agricola’s “pipe dream” of being a freelance photojournalist had just been burst by The National Geographic’s rejection of a pictorial essay of the Hawaiian Ox, which he and friend had produced, while living on the island state. Logan, who was then directing Montgomery College’s Visual Communications Technologies Program and is now an instructional dean, had heard about this ambitious young photographer through a mutual friend. Logan urged Agricola to “come take my photography class.” Agricola, who had previously taken classes at Montgomery College, decided to return.

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Nursing a Career
Insights, Fall '02

Ora Bailey ’68Alumna Ora Bailey ’68 has the indomitable spirit of someone who has overcome many hurdles in her lifetime, not least of which is the cancer that is currently in remission. Her career in nursing, for example, had to be postponed for more than two decades while she followed her husband, a career army officer, from post to post. It was only when the family moved to Montgomery County that she again took up her ambition to become a nurse. After working as a guard at the county’s new detention center at Seven Locks Road and then as a clerk at the National Institutes of Health, she was recruited in 1965 to join Montgomery College’s inaugural two-year nurse training program that was being offered at the Takoma Park campus. “I was the only black girl in the class,” the 80-year old Bailey notes. She jokingly complained that her absences were more noticed being the sole minority in a class of 50 students. This is in contrast to today’s Montgomery College student population which has representatives from 167 different nations. Nonetheless, she recalls fondly her experiences of attending the College, noting that the teachers were “firm but helpful” and the atmosphere throughout the campus was one of “family, one big happy family.”

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Channeling Success
Insights, Spring ’02

Wendy ThompsonWendy Thompson understands the benefit of investing in human potential and the responsibilities attached to those investments. The 35-year-old alumna of Montgomery College arrived nearly a decade ago from Peru with little more than the expectation most immigrants share. Through good fortune and a “tremendous thirst for success,” she found people who literally and figuratively invested in her future and opportunities opened for her. As general manager of the Washington, D.C. affiliate of one of the largest Spanish language television networks in the country, Telemundo, Thompson is fulfilling a responsibility she feels and welcomes by making sure others in the Hispanic community have what they need to succeed.

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College’s Tech LEAP Program Puts Adults on Fast Track
Montgomery College Today, Spring '02

Jennifer Maroney TripodiWhen Jennifer Maroney Tripodi started thinking about a career switch to information technology, she knew she needed training. The Silver Spring resident, a full-time mom and part-time ESOL teacher in the county public schools, considered many options. She finally chose Tech LEAP (Technology Leading Edge Apprenticeship Program), an intensive, seven-month training program under the direction of Montgomery College’s Information Technology Institute that provides high-level computer and networking training for career changers. Maroney Tripodi says she was especially impressed by the fact that she would spend the last two months of the program as a paid intern at an area technology firm, gaining not only on-the-job training, but also money to help offset the cost of the program. “There are a lot of programs out there,” she said. “Anybody can go to class and take a test, but I work better with someone guiding me on the job.”

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Architectural Technology Students Win By Design
Montgomery College Today, Spring '02

Cesar RamosEarlier this winter, students in the College’s architectural technology and interior design programs sat down to lunch with members of Torti Gallas, the county’s largest architectural design firm. Four students left the table with glory and cash prizes—a result of their success in the Third Annual Student Design Competition. The competition began in 1999 when Professor Randy Steiner, head of the architectural technology program, became exasperated that her students were excluded from architectural design competitions because they were not “third year students in accredited four-year institutions.”

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Robert P. Moltz Scholarship
Insights, Spring ’02

Robert P. Moltz ’67“A very meaningful experience,” is the way Robert P. Moltz ’67, president of Weaver Bros. Insurance Associates, Inc., and MC graduate, describes his years at the College. He credits MC not only for promoting his educational interests but also for playing an important role in his success. Moltz has shown his commitment to the College by both serving as an MC Foundation board member and through the establishment of the Robert P. Moltz Scholarship, sponsored by Weaver Bros. Insurance Associates, in the fall of 2001. This annual scholarship provides full-time tuition and fees for two deserving MC students.

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Alums on Broadway - Brad Oscar and Victoria Oscar
Insights, Fall ’01

Brad Oscar & Victoria OscarThe nomination for one of the highest honors for a Broadway performer—the Tony Award—was just another amazing scene in a dream come true for Brad Oscar, a native of Montgomery County who honed his stage craft in Montgomery College’s Summer Dinner Theatre program.

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Family Principals
Insights, Fall ‘01

David and Judy Brubaker Montgomery College alumna Judy Brubaker takes a friendly dig at her husband, David, also a College alum, as she waits on the telephone to ask him to confirm a detail she wanted to make sure was accurate. The comment, more an affectionate poke than a hurtful jibe, reflects a relationship of more than 30 years that has bonded the husband-wife team both personally and professionally and has kept them on somewhat parallel paths since they began hanging out with each other at Rockville High School.

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MC Alumna Credits Career Rise to College’s Mental Health Associate Program
Montgomery College Today, Fall ’01

Fran Goldstein and Rebecca Torres The elderly participants in a discussion group at the Support Center, an adult day care center in Rockville, weigh in with their thoughts on vegetarianism...an upcoming holiday...a daughter’s visit. In the center of it all is Fran Goldstein, executive director of this private, nonprofit organization, who facilitates the discussion as it segues from one topic to the next. She joined the Support Center as a Montgomery College intern in 1982—and never left. Along the way, she was promoted to program assistant, activities coordinator, assistant director and finally executive director. Goldstein, who lives in Silver Spring, now supervises a staff of 25 and oversees a budget approaching $1 million. Her organization serves a population of 61 seniors, a number that will soon increase to 85, thanks to additional state funding. Goldstein says the catalyst for her ascending career in social work was Montgomery College’s mental health associate’s program, based at the Takoma Park Campus.

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Web Courses, Computer Internships Spark Careers
Montgomery College Today, Fall ’01

Mona CombsThe slowdown of the dot-com economic sector last year ushered in tighter competition for information technology (IT) jobs. To meet the challenge, Montgomery College coordinated with area employers to bridge the skills gap by offering technical training with reality training. Its popular computer certification programs meet workplace trends, while the computer applications/computer science internship program provides the first on-the-job experience for many students, who then go on to successful careers in their chosen major or certificate program.

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Hospitality Management Program Serves Up State-of-the-Art Training
Montgomery College Today, Fall ’01

Nubia MedranoIf Wheaton High School sophomore Nubia Medrano hadn’t picked up a crumpled flyer about the Edison High School of Technology, she might have chosen a different career path. Something compelled Medrano to read the flyer, which announced an open house for the restaurant management program at Edison. She checked it out, and signed up for a two-year stint, taking academic courses at Wheaton and restaurant management courses at Edison. Her interest in the restaurant industry grew, and so did her desire to run her own Latin-American restaurant. So when it came time to take the next step, Lisa Fanning, head of Edison’s restaurant management program, suggested that Medrano enroll in Montgomery College’s hospitality management program. Fanning had first-hand knowledge of the program—she was a graduate herself.

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