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Friday, October 11, 2019 - 2:30pm

STEM is the road map to Philadelphia’s economic future and the bedrock for future investment. With that in mind, Community College of Philadelphia (CCP), The City’s College has redesigned and upgraded its biology, chemistry and microbiology labs and added professional-grade equipment.

More than 25 percent of degrees and certificates awarded to CCP’s Class of 2018 were for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) fields, and nearly 23 percent of the graduates were STEM majors. On Thursday Feb. 7, 2019, CCP will host a STEM Open House to display improvements and redesign of multiple laboratories and teaching spaces in the West Building on Main Campus. The renovation for the latest addition, the biology lab, was $7.2 million.

Prospective students, industry professionals and members of the public can tour the facilities starting at 9:30 a.m. President Donald Guy Generals will host a panel discussion with local STEM leaders at 8:30 a.m. in the Klein Cube of the Pavilion Building, which is on 17th Street, south of Spring Garden Street. Panelists include Dr. William Wunner, professor, director of academic affairs, and Outreach Education and Technology Training for the Wistar Institute; Dr. John Lee, associate director, CAR-T Discovery and Platform Development, Jannsen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson; Dr. Darryl L'Heureux, American Medical Writers Association, Delaware Valley Chapter and Adebayo Bello, CCP Alumnus; Genetic Counseling Assistant at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Mr. Bello is planning to enter medical school.

Talent development, the role of science in the innovation economy and CCP’s role in attracting industry and diversifying the area workforce are among the topics to be addressed.  In a 2017 ranking by SmartAsset, Philadelphia’s STEM workforce ranked high in both racial and gender diversity. Women made up about 33 percent of the total STEM workforce while 18 percent of STEM employees were black.

“Community College of Philadelphia provides a strong talent pipeline for regional industries,” Dr. Generals said. “Our mandate is to provide students with career ladders that offer training for entry-level jobs, and future opportunities to grow and advance with cutting-edge programs like the Biomedical Technician Training Program at Wistar Institute.

The Biomedical Technician Training Program and the Biomedical Research Technician (BRT) Apprenticeship were established by Wistar Institute and CCP to meet the growing demand for technicians at area healthcare and research centers. Of the 152 graduates in the technician program thus far, 53 percent are minorities and 72 percent are women, which deepen the diversity of ideas in the industry.

STEM education has evolved, shifting from simply performing experiments to learning why and how they relate to coursework and to the world.

As interactions of learners and teachers have become more intentional, peer-to-peer study has taken on new importance. The new facilities form an educational landscape that supports effective teaching and learning with technology-rich classrooms, student study areas, state-of-the art equipment for DNA analysis, a high-tech mass spectrometer, professionally equipped anatomy, physiology and micro-biology labs, and a spacious open lab where students can confer with instructors and peers after or before class to review coursework and materials. The College’s biology and chemistry labs had not been updated since their installation in 1983-1984.


About Community College of Philadelphia
Community College of Philadelphia is the largest public institution of higher education in Philadelphia and the sixth largest in Pennsylvania. The College enrolls approximately 29,000 students annually and offers day, evening, and weekend classes, as well as classes online. Visit the College at Follow us on Twitter. Like us on Facebook.

Linda Wallace
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I went to CCP for a while, then I stopped. I was laid off from my job last September. One of my goals was to just focus on school. So when I was laid off, I took the opportunity to come back. Because of CCP’s policies, a lot of my classes transferred and I was able to come back and only take about three to four classes. My plan after graduation is to begin at La Salle while working part time. My education is so important. I let my work get in the way previously; now I’m taking my education seriously!
I’m currently at Temple University studying Theater and Business Administration. In my high school, I was encouraged to think outside of the box and think about time management. My counselor from my high school recommended we go to CCP first because the College adds a lot of value and character for students. I ended up enrolling in CCP with a full ride!
I come from Puerto Rico, so the easiest way to transfer my credits and not have a big student loan was to come here to CCP. I was looking around at other colleges and CCP seemed like a really good fit for what I was looking for—and I heard good things. I’m glad I did.
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