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Tyshien Maddox had seen what the coronavirus could do: His mother got it. So did his two brothers and his grandparents. And a cousin died from it. So when Community College of Philadelphia, where he is a student, asked whether he would be interested in working for the city’s Department of Public Health as a contact tracer, he was all in. “Anything I can do to help out and let people know this is real,” said Maddox, 38, of West Philadelphia. “It was very scary for us.” Maddox is one of 13 CCP students working among the city’s 80 contact tracers. They call known contacts of coronavirus patients, warn them about possible exposure, check on their health daily, and ask them to quarantine.

College Snapshots

Faculty member, Debonair Oates-Primus, was recently selected as student commencement speaker for Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s December 14 graduate commencement ceremony. She will receive her doctoral degree in Literature and Criticism. Oates-Primus began teaching English at the College 11 years ago. Since then, she has helped to create the Diversity Certificate Program and played an integral role in the development of the new Black Studies major. She has also published her short stories in several magazines and journals. In an Interview with IUP News, Oate-Primus explained that she was motivated to “set an example of achievement” for her students of color. She believes “students need to see that people from their community can be successful even what they aren’t able to see it modeled around them.” Oates-Primus's graduation was celebrated by her students. She said when that when they found out she passed "Well, the students couldn’t wait. [She] walked into the classroom and they were all yelling congratulations and running up to hug [her]."

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