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Kathleen “Kate” C. Hetherington just embarked on her 10th year as the fourth president of Howard Community College in Columbia. The Philadelphia native has been honored for her leadership by the Association of Community College Trustees, among other organizations, but she still finds time to pursue her hobbies and passions.

She recently shared some interesting facts about herself, such as her appreciation for jazz and devotion to an iconic quiz show.

1. The Community College of Philadelphia played a big role in her life.

A Spanish 101 professor at the college paired Hetherington, then Kathleen Carey, with a student named John so they could share a textbook. They soon became a couple, and will celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary in November. Hetherington eventually returned to the school as a staff member and spent 22 years there before leaving in 1999 to become vice president of student services at HCC.

Before last week, Patrick Houston ‘16 only dreamed that he would someday meet the President. However, the afternoon of Tuesday, Sept. 13, found Houston standing at a podium in Eakins Park, praising Barack Obama’s moral judgment and courage in leadership. The crowd roared at Houston’s words, and then, the President himself emerged, shook Houston’s hand, and began to speak.

After high school, however, Houston enrolled at the Community College of Philadelphia , and believes that the classes he took, especially those in philosophy, religion, and sociology, completely changed his life.

“I was exposed to topics I never would have chosen to take. That really transformed me on an academic basis, intellectually … and put the first 18 years into perspective,” he said.

October
Wed 19

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The Community College of Philadelphia welcomed Pennsylvania's education secretary Wednesday afternoon. Pedro Rivera spoke at the hispanic heritage luncheon at the Spring Garden campus. After the remarks, the group discussed expanding access higher education in the state. Rivera himself is from Philadelphia and a first generation college student.

October
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The Knight Cities Challenge community information session will be held Sept. 26 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Community College of Philadelphia, 1700 Spring Garden St., Pavilion Building, Klein Cube Room.

The Knight Cities Challenge seeks new ideas from innovators in shaping the future of cities. Organizers are looking for projects at the city, neighborhood and block level that can be put to work in one of the 26 Knight communities.

Winning ideas, which will be announced in spring 2017, will share in $5 million. Ideas, which can be submitted by anyone, must focus on one or more of these three criteria: attracting and retaining talented people, expanding economic opportunity and creating a culture of civic engagement.

To register visit www.eventbrite.com/e/knight-cities-challenge-philadelphia-info-session-i-tickets-27180302015.

Like most of the former ITT students who showed up for the Fast Track day, Phillip hopes to enroll for the next CCP semester, starting Oct. 4, but there’s no guarantee and he may have to wait until January.

“The event that we’re having today helps students understand their options and what it will take to enroll here,” said Samuel Hirsch, CCP’s vice president for academic and student success. “We want to offer students from ITT an opportunity to talk to experts here and develop a plan.”

Hirsch said that students have questions about financial aid, academic requirements, programs of study offered, and the steps required to enroll. Students worked directly with CCP staff from admissions and financial aid. In several hours, some students were helped through the entire enrollment process.

The Philadelphia native, 23, had two of the alleged “15 minutes of fame” by giving a very brief address to the crowd of more than 60,000 at Eakins Oval by the Philadelphia Art Museum. He then introduced President Barack Obama, who was making a campaign appearance for Clinton.

That light grew into a beacon as he was encouraged to go to college by friends, family and mentors. He applied to two Pennsylvania universities that offered him substantial aid. In an analysis, seemingly beyond his years, Houston calculated he’d still have outstanding debt at the end of four years. Following another sibling who “plowed the path,” he “took a gamble” on Philadelphia Community College (CCP), giving him only two years of debt.

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