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Mechatronics meeting the needs of industry

Mechatronics meeting the needs of industry

Since its start almost two years ago, the Mechatronics program at Enterprise State Community College has grown to meet the needs of not only business and industry but also workers and students.

“Our Mechatronics program offers an opportunity for anyone who wants to get into a high-wage, high-demand career field while simultaneously offering training for those who are already in the field and need to add to their skill set,” Mechatronics instructor Aubri Hanson said. “All of the students who want internships are placed in them, and we have had great feedback from the companies who hire our students as well as the students themselves.”

Housed in Higham Building on the Alabama Aviation College, a unit of Enterprise State Community College, the Mechatronics program includes a variety of paths for individuals to receive skills training in electronics, motors, automation, robotics, and other advanced manufacturing processes.

“Automation is increasing across nearly every industry sector, so there is something for everyone, whether they want to work in manufacturing, medical, agriculture, robotics, or something else,” Hanson said.

These paths include a two-year degree program; four short-term certificates in electronics, mechanics, programming, and advanced manufacturing; and 38 NC3 certification training courses – like Precision Measurement, AC/DC Circuit Fundamentals, Hydraulics, and Pneumatics – that meet national skill standards.

The program’s short-term certificates and certification courses are particularly beneficial to current industry employers and workers.

“An industry-recognized credential benefits the individual by providing proof that they have obtained a skill set,” Hanson said. “All of the certifications offered in Mechatronics require both a lecture/textbook/eLearning component and a hands-on component. Individuals must demonstrate that they have both the knowledge and the skills required for the certification.

“These credentials benefit the industry as well because it gives them a metric for hiring and promoting individuals with the skills and knowledge they need.”

Joe Alexander, who works in Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) and Automation at Abbeville Fiber, completed the program’s two PLC certifications after learning about the program from other industry workers.

Alexander said the courses “helped me learn to go from more troubleshooting PLC programs to actually write my own PLC programs,” and he said the certifications offered through the Mechatronics program can make employees “more valuable to the company.”

Alexander also said he would recommend the ESCC Mechatronics program to any industry workers who are looking to add to their current skill sets.

“The biggest reason is the instructor we have here,” he said. “She is an excellent instructor, and she pushes you to do more and think more outside the box.”

Currently, Hanson works with several industry sectors to provide certification training, such as automation, maintenance, aerospace and machining.

“We try to accommodate industry of all sizes,” she said. “We offer the certification training to any company that needs to improve or refresh the skills of their employees. It may be 50 employees or 1 employee.

“Businesses interested in training for their employees should contact [ESCC’s Director of Workforce and Adult Education] Leigh Shiver or myself. Those agreements are typically based on the number of employees who need training and may be done at our facility, the company’s facility, or a combination of both. Depending on how much training is needed, a class may be as short as one day or may last several weeks. Again, everything can be flexibly scheduled.”

For individual workers who would like to complete a short-term certificate or certification training, Hanson said to contact her to discuss options.

“We have both credit and non-credit certifications available,” she said. “Classes are typically offered in a hybrid format using a combination of online learning and hands-on labs. The student only needs to come to campus for the labs, which can be scheduled at a time convenient for the student.”

Hanson said she is already planning for ways to expand the Mechatronics program by adding more certification courses for industries and workers, additional dual enrollment opportunities for high school students, and transfer opportunities for degree-seeking students.

“We are constantly adding more certifications and looking to expand our offerings where we see needs in our local industry,” she said. “We will continue to add new equipment and types of training to our repertoire, and we hope for continued growth in our enrollment.

Hanson said she also hopes to increase transfer options for Mechatronics students. In 2020, ESCC and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga signed a transfer agreement where a student can take 67 credits at ESCC for their associate degree and then take 62 credits at UTC to earn their bachelor’s degree in Mechatronics. She said the College is also hoping to expand its dual enrollment offerings to include more local high schools.

“My goal from the outset of starting the Mechatronics program at Enterprise State has been to provide high-quality training and education in a field that is in desperate need of employees and to do it in a flexible fashion that would accommodate both the traditional college student and the working learner,” she said. “While we are still refining and improving our model every semester, I would say that we are off to a fantastic start.”

Cutline: Joe Alexander takes advantage of ESCC’s Mechatronics program to advance his skills in Programmable Logic Controllers for his current career.

Spring enrollment strong at ESCC

Spring enrollment strong at ESCC

Enterprise State Community College saw another increase for the spring semester thanks to the College’s adapted communication efforts with students and student support services. 

Dean of Students Kassie Mathis attributed this success to the College “consistently making the necessary accommodations to retain our current students and to provide our new students with what they need to be successful.” 

These accommodations, according to Mathis, included the continuation of virtual advising, the growth of the College’s laptop loaner program and the increase in virtual and over-the-phone communication to students. One example of this communication effort was the over 500 calls made by recruiters prior to the start of the spring semester. 

“Our recruiters set a goal to contact 300 students in three days,” Mathis said. “They more than exceeded that goal by making 572 texts, calls, and emails and actually speaking with 279 prospective students. This type of dedication to the success of students is what sets us apart and allows us to see continued success during such a difficult time.” 

Much like the Fall 2020 semester at ESCC, students had more virtual and hybrid class offerings during the spring semester; however, some additional on-campus class options were available. At the Alabama Aviation College, a unit of Enterprise State, students are continuing to follow staggered schedules and a modified block system.

Whether students are taking classes online or on campus, they are still receiving the support they need to be successful, according to Vice President/Dean of Instruction Danny Long.

“The last few semesters have certainly proven challenging for our students, faculty and staff at Enterprise State Community College; however, our enrollment is strong and our students have demonstrated equitable success rates in comparison to non-COVID semesters,” Long said. “None of this would be possible without the collective effort demonstrated by our faculty and staff from Student Services. Our faculty continue to demonstrate compassion and empathy for the unforeseen variables that the pandemic has created for students, and our student support services are there to keep them engaged in the learning process.” 

Echoing Mathis and Long, ESCC President Matt Rodgers said teamwork and dedication to the students were the College’s keys to success. 

“We recognized that many people are still going through difficult times, so we all stepped up to make sure we did everything we could to remove obstacles preventing anyone from continuing their education or training,” Rodgers said. “We also adapted our methods of communication and took additional steps to meet our students’ needs before the start of the semester, like having additional hours to assist students with registration prior to the start of classes.

“Our success depends on our students’ success, and I am thankful for the great team we have here. Every administration, faculty and staff member is determined to help our students succeed during this time, and everyone works together to make great things happen here at the College.” 

Planning is already underway for summer and fall. While schedules are being finalized, students who are planning to attend the College in the fall can take steps to prepare now. 

Students can complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which connects students with federal dollars to help pay for college. When completing the FAFSA at studentaid.gov, use school code 001015 for ESCC/AAC. More information is available at escc.edu/financialaid. 

Scholarships are also available. The College offers athletic, fine arts, leadership, academic, and career and technical scholarships. Scholarships are also available through the ESCC Foundation. More information can be found at escc.edu/scholarships. The deadline to apply for scholarships is March 1. 

For individuals who have not applied to ESCC, they can visit escc.edu/admissions to find the College’s free application or call (334) 347-2623 with any questions they may have. They can also learn more about the College’s programs and facilities by taking a virtual tour at tour.escc.edu. For more questions, college recruiters can be contacted at escc.edu/meet-our-recruiters.

“Thank you to our students for choosing us,” Rodgers said. “We are happy that you decided to join us, and we are here to help you succeed. For those who are still thinking about your future, we would be happy to show you how you can take the first step toward your future with us. Don’t hesitate to reach out.”

Cutline: Dr. Ken Thomas leads fine arts students during a music class on campus.  

Students start spring classes in Sessions Hall

Students start spring classes in Sessions Hall

Enterprise State Community College students were back in the classroom in the newly renovated Sessions Hall as the first face-to-face spring classes started Tuesday, Jan. 19.

The renovation of Sessions Hall was planned as part of the College’s Five-Year Plan to upgrade facilities across both the Enterprise campus and the Alabama Aviation College campus.

“We intend to address the needs of and modernize every building on both our campuses,” ESCC President Matt Rodgers said. “It is essential that we do everything we can to provide state-of-the-art facilities to our students to learn and train in, and we know there’s much work to be done before we are where we need to be. Our goal is to eventually have the finest facilities in our state, and we are excited about our progress to meet that goal. Our students, instructors, and staff are fantastic, and we want to give them the very best.”

As part of the College’s renovation project, Sessions Hall was repainted and received new technology in each classroom, updated furniture throughout the building, and an upgraded HVAC system. Additionally, the building features renovated office spaces for faculty and staff as well as a new student lounge area. 

“We have been doing a great job updating all of our buildings to meet the current needs of our students and match the rigor of instruction our faculty provides,” Vice President/Dean of Instruction Danny Long said. “As we were planning this project, we received input from our faculty and staff about the items that were needed in our classrooms and lab spaces. We also knew that we wanted to offer our students space where they would feel comfortable studying or socializing with others.”

“We were well aware Sessions needed updating, and to see the changes that have been made, I think this building looks great and is something we can really be proud of,” Long said. “Sessions Hall offers our faculty and staff a modern yet comfortable place to work and is a first-class learning facility for students in our math and science classes.”

Built-in 1966, Sessions Hall houses ESCC’s Divisions of Mathematics and Science. The building includes laboratories and classrooms as well as a unique octagonal lecture room that can house over 100 occupants.

Work on the Sessions Hall renovation project began in December 2019. In March 2020, the College had to quickly transition to online instruction while work on the project slowed as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. 

“We’re very happy to be back here,” Division of Science Chair Dr. Tyler Simmons said. “When this project began, we had to move into another building and get used to working in that space before the pandemic hit, which forced us to adapt our classes to an online environment. Still, our faculty took everything in stride. 

“Now, we’re coming back to a great looking building. Sessions Hall is where the math and science faculty are most at home, and I’m thankful for all the hard work everyone put in to make sure our students continued to receive great instruction despite all the changes of the past year. We’re all excited to be back to start a new semester.”

Cutlines: 

Lecture room: A unique feature of the building, the large lecture room can seat over 100 individuals and features new lighting, technology, and furniture. 

ESCC announces President’s, Dean’s Lists for Fall 2020

ESCC announces President’s, Dean’s Lists for Fall 2020

Enterprise State Community College is pleased to announce the students from ESCC and the Alabama Aviation College in Ozark, a unit of Enterprise State, who have been named to the President’s and Dean’s Lists for the Fall 2020 semester.

To be placed on the President’s List, students are required to maintain a semester grade point average of 4.0 and complete a minimum semester course load of 12 semester credit hours of college-level work. For Fall 2020, 131 students have been recognized.

Students named to the President’s List are:

Leticia Ann Calloway – Ozark, AL

Stephanie Janine Adelman – Level Plains, AL

Savana Lyne Adkins – Ozark, AL

James Daniel Anderson – New Brockton, AL

Daniel W Andrews – Daleville, AL

Kyle Patrick Arthur – Dothan, AL

Stephanie Erin Barnes Bradshaw – Enterprise, AL

Marquise Chaquan Barrow – Ozark, AL

Mechelle L Baryla – Dothan, AL

Jeff Edward Bell – Enterprise, AL

Bryon Jermiah Berlin – Samson, AL

Richard J Bigelow – Enterprise, AL

Kaylon Breann Blessman – Newton, AL

Braxton Tyler Blocker – Dothan, AL

Brittany Allison Blocker – Dothan, AL

Brodie W Boozer – Enterprise, AL

Alyssa Madison Bowman – Bellwood, AL

Douglas M Bright – Enterprise, AL

Abigail Leigh Britton – Daleville, AL

Morgan Frances Broeme – Enterprise, AL

Alexis  Brown – Enterprise, AL

Isaac Robert Bruce – Enterprise, AL

Seth David Bryant – Bonifay, FL

Dylan Eric Campbell – Dothan, AL

Tiffany Josie-ann Campbell – Elba, AL

Charles Philip Cardwell – New Brockton, AL

Keely Alysse Catrett – Chancellor, AL

Robert Issac Chapman – Tuscaloosa, AL

Kobe  Cherry – Ozark, AL

Ethan Ray Cox- Daleville, AL

Kennedy Gabrielle Cox – Troy, AL

Sierra May Crawford – Geneva, AL

Victoria  Crawford – Geneva, AL

Hannah Grace Crosby – Slocomb, AL

Allyson Alene Dady – Westville, FL

Bradley Louis Dambrosio – Dothan, AL

Horacio Samir Delgado – Ozark, AL

Austin Jordan Donaldson – Samson, AL

Caleb  Donaldson – Samson, AL

Jeffery Alex Dover – Ozark, AL

James Christopher Dozer – Lanett, AL

Emily Diane Drake – Hartford, AL

Benjamin Fell – Ozark, AL

Eduardo Contreras Flores – Brundidge, AL

Maurielo Contreras Flores – Brundidge, AL

Chanlyn Michelle Free – Elba, AL

Kathryn Rose Free – Kinston, AL

John Walter Gilley – Chancellor, AL

Tevin Jajuan Goode – Enterprise, AL

Kaila Sue Gorman – Samson, AL

Corbin Gary Griffin – Enterprise, AL

Kendra L Grissett – Jack, AL

Casey Scott Hardy – Midland City, AL

Keyerra Seymone Harris – Enterprise, AL

Ralph Wesley Hawn – Enterprise, AL

Joshua Daniel Herring – Dothan, AL

Benjamin Eli Hill – Dothan, AL

Madison Leigh Holley – Samson, AL

Chuck Hood – Elba, AL

Conner Heath Howell – Enterprise, AL

Jennifer Angela Howell – Newton, AL

Richard Cole Howell – Enterprise, AL

Phillip  Jeffries – Ozark, AL

Randy Blake Jenkins – New Brockton, AL

Shawn Jones – Dothan, AL

Casey Rena Lamb – Samson, AL

Jacob Laplant – Dothan, AL

Arielle Lauren Lee – Geneva, AL

Kevin B Lesinszki – Ariton, AL

James R Leslie – Ozark, AL

Trenten Jonathan Lewis – Opp, AL

Kent M Loo – Enterprise, AL

Amber Gray Mayfield – Dothan, AL

Lori Grace Mayo – Enterprise, AL

Bailey Woodham McDaniel – Midland City, AL

Benjamin Paul McDuffie – Dothan, AL

Dylan Seth McDuffie – Newton, AL

Lateria Renea McGriff – Dothan AL

Christy Dawn McKinion – Moss Point, MS

Jessica Eileen McNeil – Fort Rucker, AL

David Alexander Moring – Dothan, AL

Tanner Alan Morris – Elba, AL

Matthew Aaron Murphy – Ozark, AL

Charles Baxter Myers – Cottonwood, AL

Joel C Newsom – Enterprise, AL

Kaitlynn Ann Nicholson – Enterprise, AL

Caitlyn Nicole Nolin – New Brockton, AL

Cody Patrick Norris – Daleville, AL

Robert Harley Oborne – Enterprise, AL

Sandy Monica Pentecost – Fort Rucker, AL

Luke A Peters – Dothan, AL

Julie Nicole Phipps – Ozark, AL

Abigail Platt – Enterprise, AL

Connor Michael Purvis – Enterprise, AL

John Hunter Reaves – Dothan, AL

Ashley Briana Renfro – Dothan, AL

Jasmine Roberts – Ozark, AL

Tytona Rodgers – Ozark, AL

Benjamin Bret Rogers – Opp, AL

Emily Elizabeth Roughton – Union Springs, AL

Ty Garner Saetang – Ozark, AL

Jeremy Sanders – Enterprise, AL

Austin David Sheppard – New Brockton, AL

Brandon Matthew Shinaberry – Ozark, AL

Breana Nicole Siegler – Daleville, AL

Steven J Spencer – New Brockton, AL

Leticia  Spinozzi Lyria – Fort Rucker, AL

Angela Kim Sweet – Enterprise, AL

Bryan A Tate – Dothan, AL

Kent Lavonne Tate – Hartford, AL

Dawson W Taylor – Geneva, AL

Roslyn Bess Taylor – Enterprise, AL

Jayleana Marie Teele – New Brockton, AL

Abbrionna Antonay Thomas – Enterprise, AL

Caleb Andrew Thornton- Midland City, AL

Thomas Stephen Townsend – Andalusia, AL

Caleb Neal Trawick – Ariton, AL

Victoria Joy Tyson – Enterprise, AL

David Alexander Uriel – Dothan, AL

Joshua Clayton Ward – New Brockton, AL

Matthew Bryant Waters – Enterprise, AL

Michael Shane Watson – Elba, AL

Kasey Elizabeth Wilkerson – Enterprise, AL

Christopher B Williams – Enterprise, AL

Leslie Marie Wills – Hartford, AL

Andrew Ryan Wilson – Ozark, AL

Jordan Steven Wilson – Ozark, AL

Royal Wilson – Ozark, AL

Shamonica Katrell Wilson – Ozark, AL

Freeman Woods – Midland City, AL

Kevin Patrick Zelman – Enterprise, AL

To be placed on the Dean’s List, students are required to maintain a semester grade point average of 3.5 or above but below 4.0 and complete a minimum semester course load of 12 semester hours of college-level work. For Fall 2020, 143 students have been recognized.

Students named to the Dean’s List are:

Damian Curtiss Aldridge – Ariton, AL

Gabriel Mack Anderson – Chancellor, AL

Jacob Nathaniel Anderson – New Brockton, AL

Gwendolyn Louise Attaway – Daleville, AL

Rebecca Lynn Badger – Enterprise, AL

Trentin  Barbee – Grand Ridge, FL

Alexis Danielle Barker – Jack, AL

James Adam Barr – Midland City, AL

Katherine Elisabeth Bell – Enterprise, AL

Hunter Newman Bennett – Enterprise, AL

Hayden Nicole Blount – Hartford, AL

Lailah Rose Bryan – Westville, FL

Clark Allan Buchanan – Ozark, AL

Kayla Marie Burch – New Brockton, AL

Luis Enrique Calixtro Olea – Enterprise, AL

Rexton Jared Campbell – Elba, AL

Jayce D Caraway – Geneva, AL

Joseph Braden Chalker –  Enterprise, AL

Tyler Thomas Coffman – Ozark, AL

Collin Nicholas Cole – Enterprise, AL

Gabriel W Collins – Bonifay, FL

Cassie Madeline Cooper – Enterprise, AL

Britton Chanler Coppage – Elba, AL

Gracie Elizabeth Coppage – Elba, AL

William Conner Couch – Enterprise, AL

Joshua Cole Courson – Mckenzie, AL

Austin Lee Courtney – Ozark, AL

Jordan Trace Crain – Enterprise, AL

Noah S Cruit – Ozark, AL

Jennifer Lindsay Dallas – Enterprise, AL

Megann Elizabeth Dallas – Enterprise, AL

Justin Davon Daniels – Enterprise, AL

Alexander Arsenio Del Valle – Ozark, AL

Caleb Brian Dorenkott – Ozark, AL

Savannah Nicole Dykes – Troy, AL

Katelynn Shalee Edwards – Goshen, AL

Shaun Charles Ericksen – Enterprise, AL

Alexandria F Ezell – Lanett, AL

Matthew Ryan Faletto – Dothan, AL

Willie Jamar Flowers – Brundidge, AL

Hannah Leann Floyd – Troy, AL

Michael  Floyd – Kinston, AL

Daniel Grayson Frazier – Hartford, AL

Devin Gamble – Newton, AL

Robert Joseph Gebhart – Enterprise, AL

Anthony D German – Ozark, AL

Devan Seth Gibbs – Samson, AL

Barry G Goforth – Coffee Springs, AL

Ava Grace  Gothard – Enterprise, AL

Phaybein Laronn Green – Enterprise, AL

Madisen Cambria Grimsley – Newville, AL

Cole Alexander Guillory – Daleville, AL

Joseph Lane Gustafson – Enterprise, AL

Mason Williams Hagler – Slocomb, AL

Kelsie Ashton Hagood – Lenox, GA

Haley Morgan Hallman – Auburn, AL

Ethan Guy Harmsen – Jack, AL

Parker Reid Herman – Hartford, AL

Melissa H Herring – Enterprise, AL

Gregory Devon Hill – Enterprise, AL

John Tyler Hoffman – Lapine, AL

Zyriec Tobias Horne – Ozark, AL

Anaiya Symone Hornsby – Enterprise, AL

Jasmin  Hurtado – Enterprise, AL

Jaden Alexis Ivey – Enterprise, AL

Vanesa  Jimenez – Elba, AL

Chance Lee Johnson – Elba, AL

Jacob Micheal Johnson – Headland, AL

Joshlyn Marie Johnson – Banks, AL

Willow Rose Johnson – Jack, AL

Briar Conard Jones – Westville, FL

Jotham Craig Keller – Dothan, AL

Katherine Nicole Kennedy – Enterprise, AL

William E Kim – Ft Rucker, AL

Audra Renee Kline – Enterprise, AL

Sonya C Labbe – Ozark, AL

Matthew Allen Lashier – Enterprise, AL

Ivey Gerald Lawson – Black, AL

Christina  Leon – Enterprise, AL

Jackson Brett Lessmann – Enterprise, AL

Elizabeth Grace Long – Enterprise, AL

Charles Paul Malysse – Enterprise, AL

David Fernando Martinez – Dothan, AL

Samuel Alberto Mazariegos – Enterprise, AL

Jehoshaphat Caleb Mcclure – Troy, AL

Kayla Rae Mcgarvey – Slocomb, AL

Tiffany Shereda Meade – Ozark, AL

Jayden Solomon Merritt – Graceville, FL

Colton Bryce Miller – Graceville, FL

Joshua David-leo Mills – Dothan, AL

Jarrod Lance Milton – Geneva, AL

Joshua Baily Mitchell – Enterprise, AL

Brayton Scott Moore – Enterprise, AL

Hayden Hanson Morgan – Enterprise, AL

Toni Marie Morlan – Enterprise, AL

Garrett Payton Murkerson – Midland City, AL

Joel Patrick Murray – Calera, AL

Seirra Kadae Neal – Enterprise, AL

Jonathon Levi Oakley – Chicago, IL

Jakeb Heath Oglesby – Ozark, AL

Alexander David Oros – Enterprise, AL

Jacob Ryan Otto – Enterprise, AL

Heather  Parker – Fort Rucker, AL

Larry Stevens Petrie – Enterprise, AL

Jaelynn Brielle Phillips – Enterprise, AL

Taylor Brian Phillips – Hartford, AL

Bianca Ebony Potts – Land O Lakes, FL

Shelby Hayden Prather – Dothan, AL

Chad  Reeves – Enterprise, AL

Thomas Robert Anthony Reynolds – Enterprise, AL

Andrew Taylor Richardson – Enterprise, AL

Silenia Nicole Richardson – New Brockton, AL

Ashanti Sharmell Riley – Daleville, AL

Jacob Logan Ritchie – Geneva, AL

Esteban  Rocha – Ozark, AL

Hannah Grace Rollan – Pansey, AL

John Tyler Sanders – Red Level, AL

Judson Hayes Scarbrough – Enterprise, AL

Ta’shia Justine Shepherd – Brundidge, AL

Raven Skye Sims – Samson, AL

John Joseph Slavins – Ozark, AL

Adam Chance Smedley – Enterprise, AL

Joseph Derek Smith – Enterprise, AL

Mary Elizabeth Smith – New Brockton, AL

Tankeya Janae Smith – Greenville, AL

Corey Elliott Steadman – St Johns, FL

James Ronald Stigers – Daleville, AL

Hannah Rebecca Sutton – Brundidge, AL

Angel Leah Terry- Brundidge, AL

Daniel A Terry –  Enterprise, AL

Trent Nathan Traxler – Daleville, AL

Brandon R Tucker – Ariton, AL

Bryson  Vasilevich – Enterprise, AL

Cassandra Brown Vest – Ozark, AL

Michael Anthony Villarreal – Enterprise, AL

Kayla S Warren – Enterprise, AL

Lauren Ashley Watters – Dothan, AL

William Harrison Weed –  Brantley, AL

Jared Alexander Wesolek – Enterprise, AL

David P West – Slocomb, AL

Robert Sanders Wilkerson – Dothan, AL

Emma Catherine Wolfe – Enterprise, AL

Brandon Trayce Yuen – Wetumpka, AL

ASPIRE 2030 helping ESCC plan for future

ASPIRE 2030 helping ESCC plan for future

Enterprise State Community College is planning for the future with its ASPIRE 2030 plan. 

ASPIRE (Achieving Systemwide Potential through Increased Resources and Engagement) 2030 was established by ACCS Chancellor Jimmy Baker to inspire deeper community engagement during the strategic planning process for capital improvement projects at Alabama community colleges. The new initiative was announced after Alabama lawmakers approved a $1.2 billion public school bond issue for capital improvement projects. ACCS allotted $120 million to be divided among the state’s community colleges. 

As part of the development of the College’s plan that was officially submitted on Dec. 9, ESCC performed a self-analysis to identify potential capital improvement projects that would best affect the community. ESCC’s plan delved into the areas of focus of the College – people, programs, facilities and community –  and explored how community development goes hand in hand with economic and workforce development, leading to the development of possible projects that could increase ESCC’s influence in its local communities. 

The self-analysis analysis was completed by not only internal stakeholders to the College but also stakeholders through the College’s External Committee. ESCC committees met for the first time virtually to discuss ASPIRE 2030 and the College on July 23.

“We spent countless hours meeting with representatives from the communities we serve over these past few months,” ESCC President Matt Rodgers said. “Together, we delved deep into the impact our College already has on the community and how we can provide more of an impact in certain areas.” 

The External Committee included representatives of local and state government, local K-12 education systems, higher education, business and industry, the local non-profit sector and economic development who provided feedback on potential needs, such as workforce needs, in sectors locally and statewide. 

One such representative, Vice Chairman of Friends of Fort Rucker Floyd E. Rodgers, called the development of the College’s ASPIRE plan a “collaborative effort.” 

“Enterprise State Community College is a valuable part of our community, providing essential educational opportunities to a diverse population,” he said. “The ASPIRE process was an effective collaborative effort that helped stakeholders identify how ESCC can further develop and expand opportunities for our community, which includes the Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker. 

“ESCC provides necessary educational opportunities for the Soldiers and family members stationed at Fort Rucker. In addition, the plan further benefits the Alabama Aviation College as it supports the aviation training mission at Fort Rucker by providing educated/trained personnel in support of the contractor managed aircraft maintenance requirement.”

Rodgers said the development of ESCC’s ASPIRE 2030 plan opened a new door for impactful conversations between ESCC and local communities.

“I am proud of this plan, and I am proud of the work of our faculty, staff and everyone else involved in its creation,” Rodgers said. “I’m especially thankful for the work of Andrew Davis and Debbie McCollough, who put together our complete ASPIRE 2030 plan for submission. 

“This plan forced us to reach out to so many different people. I believe that everyone who participated learned something. I am excited to see what this process has already done for our College, and I cannot wait to see where the projects we’ve come up with in our plan will take us in the future.” 

ESCC’s Director of Institutional Effectiveness and Planning Andrew Davis called this project “the most exciting” he had ever been involved in at ESCC. 

“ASPIRE 2030 is the most exciting project I’ve been involved in within my time at ESCC, and I know it will have a great impact on the College,” he said. “Over the past few months, we’ve had the opportunity to step back, analyze how to do things and research innovative ways to grow over the next decade. More importantly, we’ve been able to connect with the members of our community and find new ways to serve. I look forward to Phase II of the ASPIRE 2030 project and the improvements it will bring.”

Enterprise State, UTC sign Mechatronics transfer agreement

Enterprise State, UTC sign Mechatronics transfer agreement

During a virtual meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 1, a new Mechatronics-focused articulation agreement between Enterprise State Community College and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga was made official after 18 months of discussions between the two institutions.

According to the agreement, students completing the Associate of Applied Science in Mechatronics degree at the Alabama Aviation College, a unit of Enterprise State, will be able to transfer all ESCC credits to UTC and continue training to complete the Bachelor of Applied Science in Mechatronics.

Instrumental in establishing this partnership was Mechatronics instructor Aubri Hanson, who reached out to UTC while searching for transfer options for students.

“Looking at the curriculum for UTC’s BAS in Mechatronics, I knew this would be a great match and path for our students,” she said. “Completing a two-year degree in Mechatronics qualifies students for many jobs in a variety of fields that command a high wage. Going on and completing the four-year degree will allow students to move into engineering and management level positions in Mechatronics. Either path a student chooses will lead to a wealth of opportunities in a broad range of industry.”

The transfer agreement between the two institutions guarantees admission to ESCC students completing the associate degree in Mechatronics who graduate with at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA. Hanson said this agreement would have students completing 67 credits at ESCC and the final 62 credits required for the bachelor’s degree at UTC.

“We are excited about this transfer articulation agreement for the Mechatronics program and welcoming ESCC students to UTC to complete their four-year Bachelor of Applied Science degree,” Dean of UTC’s College of Engineering and Computer Science Daniel Pack said. “With the new border state tuition discount, UTC is a smart choice for students in Alabama. We look forward to working with ESCC to develop pathways for other programs in engineering, technology, and computer science.”

Since its start during the Fall 2019 semester, ESCC’s Mechatronics program has grown to include three short-term college credit certificates, one long-term college credit certificate, and an increased offering of NC3 certifications, which are industry recognized and meet national skills standards. In addition to training opportunities, Mechatronics students have access to business and industry-supported scholarships and internships. Dual enrollment students are also able to receive skills training through a combination of online content and on-campus labs.

ESCC’s Mechatronics program provides training in electronics, motors, automation, robotics, and other advanced manufacturing processes for students interested in industrial automation jobs. According to Department Head of Engineering Management and Technology/Burkett Miller Chair of Excellence at UTC Ahad Nasab, the bachelor’s program at UTC will continue this training to help students go even further in industry.

“The BAS Mechatronics program at UTC is designed to provide the knowledge and skillset demanded by the transition of manufacturing to Industry 4.0.,” Nasab said. “We hope to serve as a unique conduit for community college students to advance in the exciting field of automation, robotics and mechatronics.”

Vice President/Dean of Instruction Danny Long said the agreement with UTC was exceptional and the College is excited about the opportunities students would have available to them.

“It’s rare to have all courses for an entire program, especially a career technical program, transfer to a four-year institution,” Long said. “We have a great Mechatronics program here at ESCC that combines several areas of industry into a one-degree plan. It’s all led by Aubri Hanson. She’s a fantastic instructor who understands the needs of the workforce and industry today.

“Through our associate program, our Mechatronics students already have access to great jobs when they complete their degree at ESCC. We’re excited about this agreement with UTC because our students can continue their training and have more opportunities available to them in the workforce. We are proud to be able to offer this amazing and unique opportunity to our students, and we are looking forward to seeing how our new partnership with the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga grows in the future.”

Cutline:

UTC: Mechatronics students who transfer to UTC will continue their training in automation, robotics and other areas, which can lead to more employment opportunities in a broad range of industry.  

Mechatronics: Instructor Aubri Hanson works with student Tanner Levey on the Motor Control Trainer in the Mechatronics lab. Students completing the associate degree in Mechatronics at ESCC now have the opportunity to complete a bachelor’s degree at UTC thanks to a new articulation agreement between the two institutions.

Mechatronics 2: Mechatronics student Coree Crittenden works on an Electropneumatics circuit in the lab.

New ESCC Community Scholarship available for spring

New ESCC Community Scholarship available for spring

A new scholarship at Enterprise State Community College is helping students complete their education and training this spring.

Through ESCC’s Community Scholarship, eligible students will be entitled to six free credit hours for the Spring 2021 semester when they pay for six credit hours. The scholarship is available to students in any college program. The Community Scholarship will cover only tuition cost and fees will not be included.

The scholarship is aimed to help new students who wish to enroll in college for the first time and those who want to return to college and are not currently enrolled at the College. Additionally, the scholarship will target skilled workers displaced by the virus who want to complete training and receive industry-recognized credentials to increase their competitiveness in the workforce.

“The Community Scholarship is a continued effort on our part to support our community during a difficult time,” ESCC President Rodgers said. “During this pandemic, we increased our institution scholarship offerings to provide more financial assistance to students affected by the virus. Additionally, with great support from our Foundation, we were able to provide a similar BOGO scholarship over the summer to make sure our students did not put their education on hold.

“We’re proud to offer this new scholarship and open another path to those who want to jumpstart or continue their education and training.”

The community scholarship will also serve as an incentive for select workers to come back to college for additional training. For businesses or industries who wish to partner with ESCC and help send their workers to the College for additional training, contact Workforce Development and Adult Education Director Leigh Shiver at (344) 347-2623 ext. 2209 or email lshiver@escc.edu.

“The ESCC Community Scholarship is a great asset to help students wanting to start or return to college in the spring,” Shiver said. “This scholarship also provides a great opportunity to develop partnerships with local businesses and industry leaders who want to see their employees receive a college education or training. At ESCC, we are always happy to make those connections and provide those opportunities to those in our community.”

In addition to funding training opportunities for workers, students who were previously enrolled in any program prior to Fall 2020 and those who will enroll in any program in the spring will be eligible to receive the Community Scholarship. A full list of programs can be found at escc.edu/programs.

“We’re looking forward to a great spring semester,” Vice President/Dean of Instruction Danny Long said. “Whether virtual or in the classroom, our spring class schedule will continue to meet the educational and training needs of our students. Our faculty and staff will continue to offer their best instruction to our students and provide the essential support our students need. As an institution, we’re also planning to help our students with their technology needs through a laptop loaner program that will have over 260 available laptops available.”

ESCC purchased 260 laptops for all students to be able to access their assignments for their classes. Laptops will be available for students to check out and use only for school-related purposes. To request a laptop, students must complete a laptop request form at escc.edu/laptop.

“With the availability of our various forms of student support and the addition of the Community Scholarship, I would encourage those individuals who want to start their college education, return to college or who want to receive additional technical training to apply and register for the spring.”

To apply for the Community Scholarship, the student must enroll at ESCC, complete the FAFSA at studentaid.gov and complete the additional Community Scholarship form at escc.edu/communityscholarship. Any student who meets the qualifications will receive the scholarship, which will only be applied after all other grants and scholarship funds have been exhausted. The deadline to apply for the Community Scholarship is Dec. 10.

Students interested in applying for the Community Scholarship can access the application now, just in time to be ready for spring semester registration. Open registration begins Nov. 9.

For more information on the Community Scholarship, visit escc.edu/communityscholarship. To apply to ESCC/AAC, visit escc.edu/admissions.

Cutline: For new students or previously enrolled students, a new ESCC Community Scholarship makes the Spring 2021 semester the time to join ESCC. Pictured, from left, are Jeff-Edward Bell, Madisen Grimsley, Bridget Glover, Jasmin Hurtado, Gwen Mitchell, Zamaya Arnold.

Shiver returning to ESCC as Director of Workforce and Adult Education

Shiver returning to ESCC as Director of Workforce and Adult Education

Leigh Shiver is returning to Enterprise State Community College as its Director of Workforce and Adult Education. 

“Enterprise State Community College wanted to create a seamless transition between workforce development and adult education,” ESCC Vice President/Dean of Instruction Danny Long said. “Hiring one director for both programs would help unify the efforts of these departments and allow greater opportunity for Adult Education students to participate in apprenticeship programs, non-credit training opportunities, certification programs, credit-bearing programs, and degree pathways.

“Ultimately, the objective remains the same for both departments, and that is to provide training and educational opportunities to the community. Mrs. Shiver brings a wealth of knowledge of career and technical education, cooperative education, and career/degree pathways to the position. Needless to say, I am excited to see how these two areas will work cohesively to increase the opportunities for our students.”

Shiver taught office administration courses in the College’s Computer Information Science & Business Division from 2002-09. She still serves ESCC as a member of the College’s Office Administration Advisory Committee. 

Shiver also previously served as the director of Career and Technical Education for Enterprise City Schools and principal of the Enterprise Career Technical Education Center where she developed curriculum for several high school CTE programs and collaborated with local business and industry partners to ensure programs met local workforce needs. 

At Enterprise High School, Shiver served as the work-based learning coordinator, where she increased student participation in work-based learning programs and a business education teacher. 

Our Adult Education Program has consistently been recognized throughout our state as an exemplary program,” ESCC President Matt Rodgers said. “Under the leadership of Mrs. Shiver, I am confident that we will continue to see great opportunities being offered to our adult education students to not only acquire their GED but also advance and build their careers. 

“Her experience with work-based learning will also be essential to our efforts with workforce development, and she previously established relationships with our business and industry partners will be an asset to our team as we grow the College and our community.”

Shiver said she was happy to return to ESCC in her new role. 

“I am excited to join Enterprise State Community College as the Director of Workforce Development and Adult Education,” Shiver said. “President Rodgers and his team have done a tremendous job of meeting the needs of our community, and I am committed to providing our business and industry partners with a highly skilled workforce.”

She said some of her goals as the new Adult Education and Workforce Director are to meet with current business and industry partners to determine their needs, learn ESCC’s program offerings and certifications in order to create future training opportunities for the College’s business and industry partners, provide opportunities for adult learners to acquire the skills they need and help them transition into further post-secondary training so they can achieve their career goals, and ultimately make ESCC a pipeline to train the local workforce for high-wage and in-demand occupations.

“Whether students in our region want to learn a new trade, enhance their skills, or earn credits to transfer to a four-year university, I want them to know ESCC can meet their needs,” Shiver said. “College is for everyone.”

Shiver officially started in her new role at Enterprise State on Oct. 14. 

Cutline: Leigh Shiver is returning to ESCC to serve as its Director of Workforce and Adult Education. 

Hitting facility coming to ESCC campus

Hitting facility coming to ESCC campus

Enterprise State Community College is moving forward with plans for a hitting facility that will benefit the College’s baseball and softball teams.

The covered hitting facility will have lighting and two lanes for athletes to practice hitting and pitching. The facility will be enclosed with fencing, and plumbing and electrical will be placed for future additions to the building.

According to Baseball Coach Samuel “Bubba” Frichter, the hitting facility will be an asset to the ESCC Athletic Department and the community.

The indoor facility will allow coaches to keep practices scheduled on weather days while players will have a place to hit and pitch later in the day or during rain. ESCC athletic staff will also be able to use the facility to host development camps.

“I can’t begin to explain the importance of how beneficial this facility will be to our baseball/softball programs,” he said. “This will allow our recruiting process to flourish and add a whole new dimension to how we develop our players.”

Frichter called the hitting facility “an essential tool” in the Athletic Department’s focus on overall athlete development.

“At the end of the day, we are a program that prides itself on player development,” he said. “This is an essential tool that will help our players develop in order to reach a four-year or professional level. We want our players to have every advantage possible and to be able to utilize their time effectively while here at Enterprise State.”

Frichter said the facility will also be a great tool in increasing the College’s ties to the community with community teams that will be able to use the building for practices during rainy weather.

The addition of the hitting facility will help with current athletes and recruitment of future athletes, according to Softball Coach Traci Harrison.

“I am super excited for our softball program to be getting a hitting facility,” she said. “Our program has been waiting for something like this for a long time. As our softball field went under renovations this past year, having the hitting facility just completes the puzzle. One of the mottos that I preach about is, ‘If you build it, they will come.’ I am excited about our team and future recruits to get to experience this in our program.

“My goal in this program is to bring in top softball players from the surrounding communities or another state. We want to be successful, and I thank our Athletic Director Jeremaine Williams, our president Matt Rodgers, Dean Kassie Mathis, and all our administration members who believe in our softball program to make this happen. I believe that the best is yet to come for our baseball and softball programs. This is just the beginning.”

ESCC President Matt Rodgers thanked state legislators, including Senator Jimmy Holley, and the Coffee County Commission for their support for the project.

“Thank you to our state legislative delegation for their support of all our projects, including this facility,” Rodgers said. “I also want to say thank you to the Coffee County Commission for providing the foundation soil where the facility will be located. These groups have been instrumental in helping us bring a first-class facility to our campus that will benefit not only our student athletes but also our community. We are so thankful for their support.

“Our goal is to make our campus facilities better each day for our students and instructors,” he said. “We want our students to develop in all areas while they are here at ESCC. Our coaches and players spend countless hours on the field and in the gym, so we want to give them the best chance to be successful. I am excited that our coaches will now have the chance to better develop our student athletes.”

Rodgers said the facility could see more features added over time.

“While we are excited to take these first steps forward with this project, we are just getting started on bringing a first-rate facility to our campus,” he said. “There will be more to come in the future.”

Future plans for the facility include adding additional lanes, restrooms and a concession stand as well as stands and parking areas for spectators.

Work on the hitting facility is expected to begin in early 2021.

Cutline: The two-lane hitting facility will be covered and enclosed with fencing. The facility will include lighting, and plumbing and electrical elements will be installed for future additions to the facility.

Barajas, Payne join ESCC recruitment team

Barajas, Payne join ESCC recruitment team

Enterprise State Community College has added two new members with skills in recruitment and the aviation industry to its recruitment team.  

Ashley Barajas will take over the reins as the recruiter for the Alabama Aviation College, a unit of Enterprise State.  

Barajas’ skills include event planning, social media, and marketing. She is familiar with the military and its communities. She has previously worked as a marketing assistant for Design Leatherworks and an aviation underwriter for Hallmark Financial Services.

A native of Pennsylvania, Barajas received her bachelor’s degree in aviation from Baylor University and recently completed her Master of Business Administration (MBA) at Dallas Baptist University. Barajas also attended Texas State Technical College where she received her Instrument Related Pilot Certification.

“Combining my knowledge of aviation with my MBA has been an end goal for me,” Barajas said. “Finding a position with AAC has given me the opportunity to spread my love for aviation to others and introduce them to a niche industry. I am ready to start with ESCC/AAC and join a team with like-minded individuals.”

Alicia Payne comes to ESCC from Alabama State University, where she served as a district recruiter for the Wiregrass and social media coordinator. Prior to her recruiter role at ASU, Payne served as the social media and recruiting specialist for ASU’s football team. 

Payne is a graduate of Houston Co. High School in Columbia. She received her bachelor’s degree in graphic design from ASU.

“I’m so excited and ready to hit the ground running,” Payne said about her new role at ESCC. “Being granted the opportunity to work for ESCC means so much to me. I know that taking this position will not only challenge me but also help me grow, and that’s always the goal. I have a passion for helping people, especially high school students, and I’m looking forward to doing just that.”

Barajas and Payne are joining current ESCC Recruiter and Career Coach Emily Baker. Both recruiters started in their new roles on Oct. 1. 

ESCC President Matt Rodgers said both Barajas and Payne will be great additions to the ESCC team.

“I am thrilled that Ashley Barajas and Alicia Payne will be joining us at the College,” Rodgers said. “From the beginning, it was evident that Ashley would be a great recruiter for the Aviation College. With her passion for all things aviation, I know she is excited about the opportunity to help recruit future students to the Aviation College and make an impact on the local workforce influenced by Fort Rucker and the aviation industry. 

“Alicia came to ESCC highly recommended. With her three years of experience recruiting in the Wiregrass, she is already well established in this region and connects very well with students. Her recruiting experience will be a great asset to our College. 

“I know both Ashley and Alicia will work well with our other recruiter, Emily Baker, and I can’t wait to see all the great things that will come from this great group.” 

Cutline: Ashley Barajas, left, and Alicia Payne joined ESCC and AAC as recruiters on Oct. 1.

Enterprise State Community College

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Enterprise State Community College offers excellent academic, technical, and workforce training programs in order to prepare students for jobs that are in demand! Our faculty and staff are committed to the educational success of all ESCC students!

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