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Gatewood welcomes POIC Students to the Cascade Campus

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Pride in your community can motivate people to do all sorts of things. It is motivating students at POIC (the Portland Opportunities Industrialization Center) to connect with the Cascade Campus of Portland Community College. The pride is in a job well done and greatly appreciated. Students from POIC spent one Saturday (Jan. 27) cleaning up the grounds around the buildings on the Cascade Campus. Algie Gatewood shakes the hand of James Bloomfield and fellow POIC students following a clean up of the campus.

“I have noticed how clean the campus looks right now. I think it cuts down on smoking too when there are fewer cigarette butts on the ground,” said Carolyn Wilson, assistant to the campus president.

Kimberly Filla of Worksystems Inc said, “It truly meant a lot to our students, staff, and volunteer mentors. We hope to continue partnering with PCC.”

There is more to the future than the simple clean up plan, which could become a monthly event. Algie Gatewood, Cascade Campus president, made it clear that he hopes the students from POIC will recognize that the Cascade Campus is a perfect place for them to continue their education. Sometimes physical presence makes a difference and with POIC less than a block away from the campus the ability to make the transition to college for many of these students may become much easier if they are already familiar with the campus, he said.

“We want them on campus understanding that there is a place for them here. A challenge… and a future,” said Gatewood.

Filla agrees.

“We look forward to working more with PCC and building the bridge from high school to post secondary education,” she said. “We have a lot of students who dream of attending college one day. Our hope is to provide more opportunities where they aren’t just dreaming, but believing and achieving their goals.”

The possibilities are enormous. The Cascade Campus has more than 40 programs as varied as Fire Sciences, Multimedia, Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) and Medical Technology. The Skills Center, helping students to succeed, continues to receive accolades.

The Cascade Campus is also receiving attention from the Oregon Department of Transportation, which is a key partner in training the workforce for transportation construction related careers. One of the largest programs at Cascade is Liberal Arts and Mathematics which prepares students for transfer to a four-year college or university to complete the baccalaureate degree.

“They need to know that they can define their own futures and the best guarantee to a great future is to first get a good education,” Gatewood added. “This partnership may be just the thing that motivates the POIC students to strive for a great future.”

Gatewood and the staff at POIC clearly hope this is the case. Karl Easttorp, PCC Athletic Director, was instrumental in the development of this partnership.

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »

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