Basic skills a “plus” for SCC students

Candace Taylor and Susan Baxter present Basic Skills Plus certificates to Doris Munoz and Clemencia Covarrubias.

Two SCC students are taking advantage of a new program that Sampson Community College has embraced.

Basic Skills Plus was developed to provide employability skills, job-specific occupational and technical skills, and developmental instruction to students concurrently enrolled in a community college course leading to a high school diploma or equivalent certificate. Students must be enrolled in Basic Skills classes and meet certain criteria to get into the program.

The Basic Skills Plus Program was strategically designed to meet the employment demands in Sampson County. This new innovative program will give GED students the opportunity to competitively position themselves in the labor market. The Basic Skills Plus Program includes two separate career pathways – Early Childhood Education and Animal Sciences – Livestock. These two fields of study were selected based on potential employer interviews and were identified by local labor market information as a demand for skilled employees in these two professional fields. Students will be enrolled simultaneously in the GED and Basic Skills Plus Programs.

The first two students in the Butler Basic Skills Department who have completed the Basic Skills Plus program are Clemencia Covarrubias and Doris Munoz, who both elected to study within the Early Childhood Development option. Covarrubias initially began taking classes in the fall of 2008, and Munoz began her studies in 2010. They both started with ESL classes and transitioned into Basic Skills classes, and then moved into their high school equivalency classes. They were awarded their certificates during the 2015 spring semester.

“I love children” said Munoz. “This helped me better understand the developmental stages of children. I like that I can help influence their development”. Her classmate agrees. “I needed to know how to take care of children because I want to become a teacher” said Covarrubias. “I wish I had taken this class before I had my two children. It was so amazing”

Students are required to take an employability skills class and CPR through Continuing Education. Students who successfully complete program requirements will be awarded a career certificate. Career certificates will indicate that students have met the initial professional requisites required by potential employers. Tuition for these classes are waived and the textbooks have been purchased by the basic skills department and are loaned to the students making it of no charge to the students.

Susan Baxter, SCC’s Division Chair of Education said she is excited about the partnership between her Early Childhood Development department and the college’s Basic Skills department. “From all accounts, these first students under Basic Skills Plus were a huge success…ideal models for the program…I look forward to having them come back to SCC for more classes” said Baxter.

“If it serves as one more avenue to jump start a student’s academic career, I’m all for it!” said Candace Taylor, Director of Basic Skills for SCC. “These ladies made us proud and we hope they will continue their education here for a long time to come!” For more information on the Basic Skills Plus Program contact Candace Taylor at 592-8081 x3514