By Holly Desrosier
The aroma of turkeys cooking in the oven, stockings being hung by the fire and families gathering together—It’s no wonder this is considered the busiest time of the year. With all the holiday hubbub and gift giving, it’s important to give a little something to yourself as well. That’s why it’s the perfect time to register for the spring 2019 semester.
Craven Community College (Craven CC) is currently enrolling new and returning students for the spring semester through Jan. 5. The registration process is streamlined and simple: Students can register at the New Bern or Havelock campuses Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., or current students can go online and use WebAdvisor to view the class listing and register quickly and easily.
With hundreds of certificates, diplomas and degree programs, the College’s diverse selection is sure to fit everyone’s educational aspirations. Whether working toward an associate degree or already enrolled at a four-year university and looking to earn a few extra credits, Craven CC students have a convenient and affordable selection of seated and online classes that can be finished in just eight, 10 or 16 weeks.
Many students, both new and established, are not sure which career path best suits them. Craven CC’s newly implemented Industrial Systems Technology program is a great place to start because it teaches students a variety of skillsets that may pique their interest.
“Even if they are undecided, I think it’s a good program,” said Anne Morini, who began teaching industrial systems technology at Craven CC this fall. “It does touch on a lot of the course offerings that are here, and I’m finding that it applies to a lot of areas.”
The Industrial Systems Technology program, which just launched in August, will prepare students to service, maintain, repair and install equipment for a wide range of industries. Instruction will include theory and skills training needed for inspecting, testing, troubleshooting and diagnosing industrial equipment and physical facilities.
Students will also learn technical skills in computer-aided design (CAD), electronics, machining, welding, blueprint reading, hydraulics/pneumatics and various maintenance procedures. Upon completion of the program, graduates will have the skills to seek a career as an electrician, industrial technician or maintenance technician.
Morini, who has a background in engineering and composites, said students may find they have a knack for one of the skills, which could easily adapt into a career opportunity.
“It really gives them a broad spectrum and leads them to multiple opportunities because they have that knowledge base that really encompasses all the subjects,” she said.
And that is precisely what local businesses are looking for, according to Craven CC Dean of Career Programs Ricky Meadows. Several employers in the area have taken note of how thoroughly trained and proficient graduates of Craven CC career programs are in individual fields, so they requested that the College adopt a program to include the entire area of expertise.
“The Industrial Systems Technology program is like a smorgasbord of all the career programs we have,” Meadows explained. “Employers have actually asked the College to teach this specific program. We’ve talked to a lot of local companies and there are a lot of job opportunities out there.”
Craven CC’s health programs department is also actively recruiting students for the Medical Assisting (MA) and Health Information Technology (HIT) program, both of which are in high demand. “If the reader does a search for medical assistant or health information technology jobs, they will see 70 to 100 jobs near New Bern,” said Dr. Alec Newton, dean of health programs.
The MA program prepares students to perform administrative, clinical and laboratory procedures. Coursework includes instruction in scheduling appointments, coding and processing insurance accounts, billing, collections, medical transcriptions and computer operations. Students will also learn to assist with examinations and treatments, perform routine laboratory procedures, electrocardiography, supervised medication administration and ethical/legal issues associated with patient care.
Students can complete the program in three semesters to earn their diploma and be eligible to take the national certification exam. They can finish out the last few courses online while also working as a medical assistant. The MA field is expected to have over 180,000 positions needing to be filled by 2026.
“Nationally certified medical assistants are working in almost every urgent care and doctor’s office from pediatrics to cardiology and internists,” said Newton. “The MA program applications open in the spring for day and night classes, and we can prepare you for national certification so that after your summer externship you could be working in a great family practice in Craven County or almost any city in the United States.”
Conversely, the HIT program teaches students information technology, management, leadership and clinical skills. In just five semesters, students can graduate with an associate degree and apply their knowledge to aspects of healthcare such as records management, clinical documentation, coding and billing, data analysis and consumer advocacy.
“As healthcare becomes more and more computer dependent, graduates from a HIT program are in demand,” said Newton. “This field has so much growth that a motivated individual can even earn a bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate in HIT.”
No matter which program you choose, financial aid and scholarships are available for students who qualify. Those interested are encouraged to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
Additionally, students who were enrolled at Craven CC or resided in a major disaster area as of Sept. 10, 2018 may utilize funds for assistance with tuition, fees, transportation, textbooks and living expenses. Students impacted by Hurricane Florence are encouraged to visit First Stop in the Student Center on the New Bern Campus or call 252-638-4597.
For more information on spring registration, contact the New Bern Campus at 252-638-7200, the Havelock Campus at 252-444-6005 or visit www.cravencc.edu.
This article also appeared in the Sun Journal.