Middlesex Community College: Small Institution, Big Impact

Freshman seminar group photoApril 30, 2018 – Students are the center of Middlesex Community College.

Since 1966, more than 80,000 students have attended MxCC. Tens of thousands have earned associate degrees and certificates. Many continued their education to a bachelor’s degree and beyond. Most have led successful careers and paid it forward by mentoring and hiring students from their alma mater.

Placing students at the center has sharpened the college’s mission to help students achieve their individual goals and become productive, engaged global citizens. Students say people are the main reason they chose to attend Middlesex. They value relationships built between themselves and “dedicated professors,” “friendly and supportive administration,” and a “welcoming student body.” We call this The MxCC Way.

girls with robotThe college is also defined by our community — that’s you. We work together with businesses, schools, and nonprofits to provide a relevant, rigorous curriculum that leads to employment and further education. Over 100 employers host MxCC students in clinical placements and internships. Dozens serve on program advisory boards.

We’re a small college with a large impact:

  • Two-thirds of Middlesex Health System diagnostic imaging staff graduated from our Radiologic Technology program. This 45-year-old partnership with Middlesex Hospital includes specialties in Computed Tomography, Mammography, and soon—Magnetic Resonance Imaging.
  • Facing closure, MxCC’s Meriden Center was instead relocated to Platt High School. Over 300 students per semester take courses in this beautifully renovated facility. Next door, Manufacturing students learn in state-of-the-art labs at Wilcox Technical High School.
  • Many of the state’s licensed opticians completed MxCC’s Ophthalmic Design and Dispensing program—one of only two in Connecticut, and the only one at a public college.
  • Pieper Memorial Veterinary Center built an education wing for 50 students in MxCC’s rapidly growing Veterinary Technology program using only private funds.
  • Our award-winning Center for New Media involves students in the production of professional multimedia products used by external clients, leading to jobs at TV stations and production companies.
  • We bring college into prisons through a unique collaboration with Wesleyan University. This summer, 25 incarcerated students will receive MxCC diplomas.

Our expert peer tutors celebrate National Tutoring Week

We are a compassionate college that believes in the common good. Our Magic Food Bus pantry helps students in need and their families. We award millions of dollars in financial aid and scholarships. Our Courageous Conversations series fosters open, honest, peaceful dialogue. We’re a Military Friendly® school where veterans are honored and supported. Opticianry students conduct community eyecare clinics at home and abroad. And, we are signatories of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Middlesex Community College has this kind of impact despite years of budget cuts from the state, which is in “a period of permanent fiscal crisis.” We want our commitment to you — and your commitment to us — to be as strong as ever.

MxCC has over 3,000 students but just 109 full-time employees; 200 part-time faculty, tutors, and enrollment staff; and only five managers. We are a lean organization, and we have a balanced budget.

Left to right: Nancy Kelly, Donna Bontatibus, Mrs. Amenounve, Messanvi Amenounve, Susan Girouard and Landi Hou

Our “one-team” culture says that each of us is dedicated to working together to ensure student success and educational excellence. Employees have spent countless hours devoted to task forces, committees, and outreach activities — often with no extra time or pay — to make this college the best it can possibly be.

Recently, the New England Association of Schools and Colleges rejected the Board of Regents for Higher Education’s proposal to merge Connecticut’s 12 community colleges into a single institution. The “Students First” plan was projected to save $28 million by reducing administrative costs and centralizing some functions.

Although this consolidation seems to be off the table, Middlesex Community College has always collaborated with our sister institutions. We will continue to do so. Common-sense solutions can be implemented without consolidation, such as guided pathways, harmonized curricula, and a unified community college transcript. We need to make it easier for students to take courses at any of the campuses; complete programs of study quicker; and, transfer to the four-year university of their choice.

“Students are the center of Middlesex Community College.” Not only are these words a nice phrase found in our mission statement, they are a promise to fulfill our vision to be your college, helping to create your future.

Dr. Steven Minkler is the academic dean and lead campus administrator at Middlesex Community College.