In the access hall to the library resides a large green banner hanged up asking students to sign their name to pledge for completion. So far, it’s already had over 500 signatures.
Community College Completion Corps (C4), an offshoot of Phi Theta Kappa, is responsible for the banner, which used to be in the Kirk Student Center across from the ASMCC office. The banner is just one of many in other schools around the country.
Its arrival was accompanied by a ribbon-cutting ceremony with MCC President Shouan Pan last year. It’s part of a push by Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society to increase community college graduation and transfer rates in the United States.
“The idea (was) stemmed from Phi Theta Kappa International. We brought it back from the convention last year in Seattle for our students,” Heather Thomas, president of MCC Phi Theta Kappa chapter, said. “A student signing the wall makes the commitment to MCC and themselves.”
C4 is an organization dedicated to assisting and encouraging students to graduate, which gives them greater earning potential.
“C4 is dedicated to helping students succeed,” Duane Oaks, faculty director of MCC service learning, said. “Once there is a visual image of their commitment, it may make it more real.”
One of the areas of focus is unplanned pregnancies that lead to dropouts. Project HOPE, which stands for Healthy Outcomes through Prevention and Education, seeks to educate students to avoid an unplanned pregnancy.
The Project HOPE web site, www.mccprojecthope.org, has a list of resources for birth control and family planning all around the Valley. They are one of three organizations in the country that have received the Make It Personal: College Completion grant.
Phi Theta Kappa at MCC isn’t solely dedicated to assisting college students though; there are plans to help increase literacy among elementary schools in Mesa. There will be a scholastic book fair that will take place in the Kirk Student Center October 10-14, with the proceeds going towards buying books for elementary school, libraries and students.
There will also be a book drive at the homecoming game on Oct. 22 where people can bring books to donate. It’ll be tied with a book “adoption” drive, where MCC students pay a buck or two to get books that will be given to kids in the area, with the money being used to purchase more books.
“We’ll do anything we can do to help. Everywhere I look there is need,” Oaks said.
C4 is planning a demonstration on the field during halftime of the homecoming game to promote their cause.