Award-Winning MCCC Program Assists Seven Local Schools

Area high school students (at top) were recognized by MCCC during an October ceremony for their accomplishments in the Gateway to College Program

POTTSTOWN PA – The Gateway to College Program at Montgomery County Community College, which has helped students in seven area high schools earn college credits while completing requirements they need for high school graduation, has received a coveted excellence award for a third year in a row, the college announced Wednesday (Nov. 4, 2020).

The national Achieving the Dream network presented its honor after research again showed the college program exceeded benchmarks in outcomes for first-term success, one-year persistence, two-year persistence, and three-year graduation rate.

MCCC launched Gateway to College in 2013 at both the Pottstown and Blue Bell campuses. It has since helped more than 200 students earn high school diplomas, and saw many of them continue to take classes afterward. The program is one of only two that operate within Pennsylvania, and is among 31 national programs in 19 states.

Local school districts referring students to the program include Pottsgrove, Boyertown, Daniel Boone, Owen J. Roberts, Perkiomen Valley, Phoenixville, and Upper Perkiomen.

“While Gateway to College is not a panacea for all students, it does continue to serve as a beacon for students who are searching for a way to complete high school but feel disconnected from the traditional educational model,” according to Dr. Keima Sheriff, the college’s assistant dean of student programs. “I am incredibly proud of the hard work and dedication of the Gateway staff, faculty and administrators to support our students in getting to program completion.”

MCCC’s Gateway team includes Sheriff, Resource Specialists Jezerey Weiderman and Esau Collins, faculty members Diane McDonald, Karen Harding-Tasca, Stephanie Wuertz, Jessica Dalcanton, Tracey Fida, Geraldine Plaisir, Timothy Gallagher and Durrell Jones, and Administrative Support Secretary Constance Stebbins.

Photo by David DeBalko, supplied by Montgomery County Community College