April 01, 2014
One came to the United States from an orphanage in Russia at the age of sixteen. Another moved here from Japan and started at Northampton Community College in the English as a Second Language program. Another didn't have a car, but was willing to walk six miles to campus to get to class. The fourth loved how small her classes were and how she got to know all of her professors.
Today all four Northampton Community College students wear the medals that distinguish them as Pennsylvania academic all-stars - students who have distinguished themselves in scholarship, service and leadership at Pennsylvania's community colleges. They received their medals from NCC's president, Dr. Mark Erickson, in front of a crowd of close to 300 people during a celebration in Harrisburg on March 31.
Northampton's newest all-stars have much to be proud of, but they have their sights set on the future:
Yoo Kwi Kim dreams of a career in biological research. She has not yet decided whether she wants to pursue a doctorate in biochemistry or in pharmacology.
Sonia Kunz will transfer to Lehigh University in pursuit of her goal of becoming a certified public accountant. She hopes to earn two master's degrees - one in accounting and one in business administration.
Elizabeth Malantonio looks forward to teaching mathematics after completing bachelor's and master's degrees. She will continue her education at East Stroudsburg University.
Sean Salmon would like to get field experience in invasive species management or wildlife conservation management and ultimately to teach at NCC after earning a Ph.D.
The next day 21 other students from NCC met with state legislators to discuss how important state funding is to community colleges.