From the safety and comforts of home, prospective Montgomery County Community College students and their families will have a chance to discover and interact with all that the College has to offer.
MCCC will host its first-ever winter online open house, Saturday, Dec. 5 from 10 a.m. to noon. Attendees will enjoy a wide range of event programming, panels and presentations; learn about MCCC’s flexible programs; discover affordable ways to pay for college and ask questions during live Q&A breakout rooms with faculty and staff. The online event is free and open to the public but pre-registration is suggested. For full details, email the Office of Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I’m most excited by the fact the College is still finding ways to connect with people in the community, no matter where they are,” said Michael Harcum, Associate Director of Admissions and Dual Enrollment. “Whether they’re in their homes, at their high school, at work, wherever people are, these open houses are still a great, effective way to reach people. While our physical campus might not be running as it regularly would currently, we’re still here to get you where you want to be on your educational journey.”
MCCC most recently held two virtual open house events in October and officials say they’ve continued to improve the experience for guests.
“We will have added opportunities for engagement in various breakout sessions,” said Brie Kulp. Coordinator of Admissions and Dual Enrollment. “Students can interact with faculty members in more of an intimate grouping. They’ll also have opportunities to meet with all areas of academic departments and all areas of student services in one stop shop breakout room.”
The College will focus on facilitating individual interaction during the two-hour event and will have additional video content available afterward, said Kulp.
“Open houses are one of few events throughout the year where we have so many representatives from so many departments available to meet with students and answer questions,” she said. “It’s always nice for students to be able to ask questions about a program they’re interested in and meet faculty members who teach in that program. It gives them an idea of what they’re walking into as they begin that journey.”
A key part of the winter open house will be financial aid. Given these uncertain times, the ability for students to receive a quality college education at an affordable price has never been more important. With many students and families facing financial challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic, MCCC has taken several steps to help keep costs low. It has announced tuition and fees will remain the same for the 2020-21 academic year as they were the previous year. The College’s Financial Aid Office will also hold multiple virtual workshops to help students with filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form.
Further, MCCC awards over 500 scholarships a year to its students. In addition to College scholarships, there are numerous external scholarships available for students to explore, many of which do not require a separate application provided you’ve completed the FAFSA.
Montgomery County residents who have become unemployed due to COVID-19 may also be eligible to receive additional tuition waivers after all applicable grants, scholarships and/or workforce training funds are applied, through the Montco Recovery Tuition Assistance Program.
“Career Services will also be participating in this open house and highlighting its new career services management tool ‘Hire a Mustang,’” said Harcum. “The objective is to do exactly that: hire a Mustang. We are the Montgomery County Community College Mustangs.”
Harcum encouraged families financially impacted by COVID-19 to also consider the dual enrollment program, which allows students still in high school to earn transferable college credits by taking MCCC courses at a reduced tuition rate in some cases.
Lastly, after the pandemic hit, many students and their families were forced to cancel or change their plan for college. Harcum said now is the perfect opportunity to start over.
“Many students had plans to go away for college this fall but maybe things didn’t go as planned because of COVID-19,” he said. “I would encourage students to come to our open house and learn how to transfer credits to Montco. Get a fresh start in the spring. Classes start Jan. 20.”