Dr. Stout Named President & CEO of Achieving the Dream

Dr. Karen A. Stout (center) was named President & CEO of Achieving the Dream, Inc. on Feb. 17 at the organization's annual DREAM conference in Baltimore, Md. Photo courtesy of Achieving the Dream

Dr. Karen A. Stout (center) was named President & CEO of Achieving the Dream, Inc. on Feb. 17 at the organization’s annual DREAM conference in Baltimore, Md. Dr. Stout is pictured with Dr. William E. Trueheart (left) current President and CEO of Achieving the Dream, and Dr. Robert G. Templin Jr. (right), Chair of the Achieving the Dream Board. Photo courtesy of Achieving the Dream

Montgomery County Community College President Karen A. Stout has been named the next President & CEO of Achieving the Dream, Inc., (ATD) the national, nonprofit leader in championing evidence-based institutional improvement across U.S. community colleges. She will remain at the College through the current academic year and assume leadership of ATD on July 1, 2015.

“Our College has been fortunate to have such a quality leader, mentor and individual as Karen Stout serve as the president of this great institution for more than 14 years,” said Michael J. D’Aniello ’78, Chair of the College’s Board of Trustees. “We wish her every success and look forward to all she will achieve in developing policies and strategies to extend access to quality community college education for minority and low income students nationwide.”

Read Board Chairman D’Aniello’s message to the College community

Stout’s 14-year tenure at Montgomery County Community College has been remarkable for the broad initiatives that both expanded the college’s footprint and strengthened student success. She has led the development and implementation of three strategic plans and two facilities master plans that resulted in the expansion of the West campus in Pottstown, the expansion and near re-making of the Central campus in Blue Bell; a new Virtual Campus, a Culinary Arts Institute, new occupational and transfer programs, strong relationships with community partners, and new relationships with school districts and colleges and universities. In addition, the College’s 50th Anniversary, $9 million fully-private College Foundation campaign for scholarship support is on track to exceed its goal.

Stout has served at the helm of Montgomery County Community College since 2001. Her appointment is both a natural next step and a vote of confidence based on successful leadership of the College’s participation in the ATD program since 2008, her role as president of an ATD Leader College since 2011, and the winning of ATD’s prestigious Leah Meyer Austin award in 2014. She has led the College to statewide and national prominence in its work around student success, technology and analytics, and sustainability. The new post will enable her to make a broader impact; ATD reaches 200 community colleges and nearly four million students in 35 states.

“I am proud of our leading work at Montgomery in so many areas,” Stout said. “I’m eager to extend the learning from this work to help community colleges across the country. There is an increasing call for us to help the citizens in our communities gain access to affordable post-secondary education as well as complete an experience that leads to successful employment and citizenry.”

Read Dr. Stout’s message to the College community

Stout succeeds Dr. William E. Trueheart, ATD’s founding president & CEO, who announced his retirement from the independent nonprofit on October 30, 2014. Robert G. Templin, Jr., Chairman of the Board of Achieving the Dream, Inc., made the announcement at the organization’s annual convening in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Stout leaves the College well positioned for the future. The College’s next president will arrive with the Middle States decennial review near completion, and the strategic plan to 2016 in its final year of implementation. A self-study conducted by the administration is complete and offers a new president a roadmap for the future based on the College’s strengths while the establishment of an early retirement plan offers a new president the opportunity to build, hire, and train the faculty of the future. The College’s first facilities plan is complete and a second is underway with funding secured for renovation of a new Health Sciences Center, an expanded Science Center on the Central Campus, and a growth strategy in place for the West Campus. In addition, strategies for enrollment development and student success are in place and showing momentum.

D’Aniello and the Board of Trustees will conduct a nationwide search for a president who can build on Stout’s momentum.

“In 2000, when we embarked on a mission to find the College’s fourth president, the single most important character trait was to find and individual who truly carried in their heart our core mission: to provide the citizens of Montgomery County and all our students, no matter their economic status, the highest quality education at the most affordable tuition possible,” D’Aniello said. “In January 2001, we found that person in Karen Stout. As we look toward our next leader, those core values will remain paramount.”

“Community colleges are at a crossroads in redesigning their work to support the economic and civic needs of our country for the next 50 years,” said Stout. While she is drawn to the challenge, Stout acknowledged that moving on was a difficult decision.

“I love Montgomery,” Stout said. “Mostly, I will miss our students and our alumni who show us in so many ways why the work we do is important. Their stories of aspiration and success motivate me to serve.”

~ by Denise Portner

VIDEO: Sneak Peek of ‘Restaurant Startup,’ Featuring CAI’s Own Chef Latona

Tune into CNBC Tuesday (Feb. 24) at 10 p.m. to watch Montgomery County Community College Instructor and Chef Stephen Latona and his business partner Chef Mark Bellini convince “Restaurant Startup” hosts Joe Bastianich and Tim Love to invest in their enterprise, Smoke Kitchen. Below is an extended preview of the show. Best of luck Chef Latona!

South Korean Students Spend Day in College’s Dental Hygiene Clinic

Dental Consultant Dr. Joel Jaspan explains a procedure to students from Daejeon Health Sciences College, South Korea, in Montgomery County Community College’s Dental Hygiene Clinic in Blue Bell. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Dental Consultant Dr. Joel Jaspan explains a procedure to students from Daejeon Health Sciences College, South Korea, in Montgomery County Community College’s Dental Hygiene Clinic in Blue Bell. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Twelve students and one instructor from Daejeon Health Sciences College in Daejeon, South Korea toured and observed procedures in Montgomery County Community College’s  Dental Hygiene Clinic on Feb. 2 as part of a three-day visit to the Philadelphia region.

The group has been New York City since Jan. 16 as part of a study abroad experience coordinated by Manhattan dentist Dr. Paul Sui, through which the students are experiencing dentistry and dental hygiene education as they are practiced in the United States. The group has spent time at Columbia University, New York University, and at several private dental practices.

Daejeon Health Sciences College students observe Montgomery County Community College Dental Hygiene students treat a patient in the Dental Hygiene Clinic in Blue Bell. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Daejeon Health Sciences College students observe Montgomery County Community College Dental Hygiene students treat a patient in the Dental Hygiene Clinic in Blue Bell. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Montgomery County Community College alumna Lillian Caperila, who is a manager and international presenter of professional continuing education for Premier Dental Products Co. in Plymouth Meeting, arranged the three-day Philadelphia trip, which had the students visiting University of Pennsylvania, Montgomery and Premier’s manufacturing facility, along with some sight seeing.

“Daejeon Health Sciences College uses dental instruments that are manufactured right here in Philadelphia, so the students got to see how the instruments they use every day are made,” Caperila explained.

At the College, the Daejeon students observed Montgomery students and faculty treat patients in the Dental Hygiene Clinic, located at the Central Campus in Blue Bell. Through formal and informal discussions, including a pizza lunch, both groups of students were able to about each other’s education and culture. The Daejeon students also toured the campus and met with Provost Dr. Vicki Bastecki-Perez and Dental Hygiene Program Director Jenny Sheaffer.

~ by Alana J. Mauger

Students from Daejeon Health Sciences College and Montgomery County Community College gather for a photo before having a pizza lunch. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Students from Daejeon Health Sciences College and Montgomery County Community College gather for a photo before having a pizza lunch. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

VIDEO: ‘The Buzz Update,’ Week of 2/16/15

Check out “The Buzz Update” for the week of Feb. 16, 2015.  The program is student produced by the Communicating Arts Production Group (CAPG) at Montgomery County Community College.

Workshops Help Students Assess Working and Experiences for College Credit

Montgomery County Community College, in collaboration with all Pennsylvania community colleges, recently launched a new online tool, College Credit Fast Track, to help adult students earn college credit for work and learning experiences.

To introduce this new tool and help prospective students walk through the process of creating an online portfolio of their prior learning experience, MCCC will be holding free Prior Learning Assessment Portfolio Information Workshops. The workshops are scheduled for Monday, Feb. 23, 6-7 p.m. and Wednesday, Feb. 25, 10-11 a.m. at Parkhouse Hall, Room 115, Central Campus, 340 DeKalb Pike, Blue Bell, and for Thursday, Feb. 26, 10-11 a.m., and Friday, Feb. 27, 10-11 a.m., at South Hall, Room 220, West Campus, 101 College Drive, Pottstown. To register, contact Denise Collins at 215-619-7313 or dcollins@mc3.edu.

Funded by a U.S. Department of Labor Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grant, the College Credit Fast Track program is part of a combined initiative of the Commonwealth’s community colleges to train and place underemployed and unemployed residents in high-demand job fields.

To learn more about the program, visit ccfasttrack.org or contact Denise Collins at 215-619-7313 or dcollins@mc3.edu. To talk to an advisor, contact Mary Beth Bryers at mbryers@mc3.edu or call 215-641-6319.

~ by Diane VanDyke

CAI’s Chef Stephen Latona Competes on CNBC’s ‘Restaurant Startup’

Chef Stephen Latona. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Chef Stephen Latona. Photo by Sandi Yanisko

Chef Stephen Latona, who teaches at Montgomery County Community College’s Culinary Arts Institute (CAI) in Lansdale, will be competing as one of 20 restaurant entrepreneurs on Season Two of “Restaurant Startup.” The show airs on CNBC Tuesday evenings at 10 p.m. ET/PT.

Latona and his business partner Mark Bellini are owners of Smoke Kitchen—a culinary enterprise that features wood-fired rotisserie chicken. Their dishes highlight the use of fresh, locally grown vegetables and free-range chicken. The episode featuring Smoke Kitchen is scheduled to air Tuesday, Feb. 24, at 10 p.m. ET/PT on CNBC.

“It’s exciting and a great opportunity to have Smoke Kitchen selected as one of the 20 competing restaurants,” says Latona, who teaches several classes at CAI, including the Retail Operations class where students learn about operating a business.

A graduate of The Restaurant School in Philadelphia, Latona has worked in variety of food service sectors in the industry, including fine dining restaurants, catering and food styling. He has held a variety of chef positions and has worked in France, New York City and some of the top restaurants in Philadelphia. Latona also has worked with some of the premier catering companies in the suburban Philadelphia area and worked on a national cable television show coordinating all the food styling.

Latona has been teaching at the CAI since 2013, starting as an adjunct instructor and now as a full-time instructor. Prior to teaching at the CAI, he taught at The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill College in Philadelphia for almost a decade.

Bellini teaches as a chef instructor at Star Career Academy in Philadelphia and Sur La Table in King of Prussia. He has more than 30 years of extensive experience in restaurants, catering and retail marketing. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Bellini has held the Executive Chef position at Collegeville Inn and Marketplace and Queen of Hearts Gourmet Market and Catering. In addition, Mark has also been Sous Chef for Frog/Commissary Catering in Philadelphia, Sheraton Valley Forge and Blair Mill Inn in Horsham, Pa.

“Who doesn’t love chicken, was a thought we had, and we love wood-fired cooking so the rotisserie idea was conceived,” said Latona. Their goal is to create a singular great item prepared from scratch using local product and crafted with care and an upscale mentality.

“Restaurant Startup” features restaurateur and TV personality Joe Bastianich and chef and restaurateur Tim Love who vie to invest their own money in restaurant concepts they believe could make them millions. Each week, two teams are invited to pitch their food ideas to the investors. Under high-pressure questioning, each team tries to convince Bastianich and Love that theirs is a concept worth backing. The chosen team is given the keys to a working restaurant on trendy Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. They get 36 hours and $7,500 to put their dream to the test and create a business plan; come up with a branding campaign; and, finally, launch their pop-up restaurant. Under the watchful eye of Bastianich and Love’s culinary consultant Antonia Lofaso, the aspiring food moguls open their doors, serve their food, and test their concept on the public. Based on the reaction from the diners, the quality of the branding, and the viability of the business plan, Bastianich and Love decide whether or not they will put their own money on the line to make someone’s dreams come true – and, hopefully, make big money for themselves.

For more information about Smoke Kitchen, visit smokekitchen.wordpress.com or follow Smoke Kitchen on Twitter at @smokekitchen and like on Facebook at facebook.com/pages/smoke-kitchen.

To learn more about “Restaurant Startup,” visit: cnbcprime.com/restaurant-startup. Facebook: facebook.com/restaurantstartupTV and follow on Twitter: @RestStartup or  #RestaurantStartup.

About the Culinary Arts Institute of Montgomery County

The Culinary Arts Institute of Montgomery County Community College is the region’s home for innovative, affordable culinary arts education and training. The Culinary Arts program includes both associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit culinary enthusiast and professional development course offerings. The 15,000-square-foot facility at 1400 Forty Foot Road, Lansdale, in Towamencin Township, is conveniently located near the Blue Route (I-476) and the Pennsylvania Turnpike. The facility features four state-of-the-art kitchens and equipment, three SMART classrooms and a retail bakery café, where students can develop real-world food preparation and customer service skills. For more information about the Culinary Arts Institute, visit mc3.edu/culinary or call 267-646-5970.

Facebook: facebook.com/CAIofMC3
Twitter: twitter.com/CAIofMC3
Blog: /whatscookingatcai.wordpress.com

~ by Diane VanDyke

Student Environmental Club Leads 2015 RecycleMania Efforts

At a recent club fair, Montgomery County Community College Environmental Club Co-Presidents Natalya Martin (left) and Natalie DeSantis showcased the amount of recyclable materials that are mistakenly thrown in the trash during a given lunch hour at the Central Campus. Photo by Alana J. Mauger

At a recent club fair, Montgomery County Community College Environmental Club Co-Presidents Natalya Martin (left) and Natalie DeSantis showcased the amount of recyclable materials that are mistakenly thrown in the trash during a given lunch hour at the Central Campus. Photo by Alana J. Mauger

Students from Montgomery County Community College’s  Environmental Club are leading the institution’s 2015 RecycleMania efforts, a nationwide tournament among colleges and universities designed to increase student awareness of campus recycling and waste minimization.

After finishing second in Pennsylvania in the Waste Minimization category during the 2014 challenge—collecting 17.248 pounds of combined trash and recycling per capita—the College expects to maintain momentum in this, its eighth consecutive year of competing.

The 2015 competition kicked off on Feb. 1 and continues eight weeks through March 28.

During the program, campuses compete in different contests to see which institution can collect the largest amount of recyclables per capita, the largest amount of total recyclables, the least amount of trash per capita or have the highest recycling rate. Final results will be announced in mid-April.

In 2014, 461 colleges comprised of 6.3 million students and staff recycled and/or composted 89 million pounds of waste.  In addition, Recyclemania 2014 resulted in a reduction of 126,597 metric tons of CO2 equivalent (MTCO2E).

 See the full 2014 report

Of the totals, Montgomery County Community College contributed 37,390 pounds of recycling and averaged 4.658 pounds of recycling per person each week.

According to the U.S. EPA’s Waste Reduction Model (WARM), the College’s recycling efforts during last year’s competition resulted in a greenhouse gas reduction of 63 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MTCO2E), which translates to the energy consumption of five households or the emissions of 12 cars.

RecycleMania is made possible through the sponsorship support of Alcoa, The Coca Cola Company and Keep America Beautiful. Additional program support is provided by the College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC), U.S. EPA Waste Wise program, Campus Conservation Nationals, and the National Wildlife Federation’s Campus Ecology program.

Check out the College’s Think Green blog for RecycleMania stats and updates.

To learn more about the RecycleMania 2015 competition, visit recyclemaniacs.org.

~ by Alana J. Mauger