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Free tuition plan, loaner computers expand access to Atlantic Cape

Free tuition plan, loaner computers expand access to Atlantic Cape

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The beginning of a new semester brings excitement and optimism for a fresh start. Although this year certainly will be different for several reasons, those feelings remain. As students prepare for the new academic year, many are rethinking their plans as a result of the pandemic. Atlantic Cape provides a desirable option for many students and their families who are concerned about leaving home.

Atlantic Cape is a smart choice because we offer quality education by our dedicated faculty, at a fraction of the cost. Plus, many qualify for financial aid. Tuition-free college is available for eligible applicants who have an adjusted gross income of $65,000 or less. This is a great time to get started. Go to atlantic.edu/free to find out more.

But, we don’t stop there. To ensure students have the necessary access, we are providing loaner computers with internet hot spots to those in need.

I am very proud that our college serves all students. For example, we have an honors program which prepares students to transfer to competitive colleges and universities, several of which we have agreements with to help make the process seamless. The good news is that you can start here and go anywhere. You can transfer an associates degree or your credits to a four-year institution. Rutgers University, Stockton University, Fairleigh Dickenson University, Rowan University and Thomas Edison University are just a few of our partners in education.

Our college is also dedicated to helping local professionals who may be looking to change direction in their careers through our Workforce Training Department. Three of our most popular workforce training programs (paramedic, medical assistant, and short-term culinary) are now eligible for financial aid. These programs are an excellent opportunity for someone to quickly obtain the certifications needed to get a good-paying job.

We understand that students may be reluctant to start or return to college due to these unprecedented times. They shouldn’t let COVID-19 stop them from continuing their education. For the safety of students, faculty and staff, we continue to limit the number of students on our campuses and offer most classes online. Limited in-person instruction will take place in our nursing skills labs, the Academy of Culinary Arts and the aviation program. For those needing to come to our campuses, we have implemented all the necessary CDC guidelines.

We know the past several months have been financially challenging for many in our community. At Atlantic Cape, we will not let circumstances stand in the way of anyone obtaining a high-quality education. Learning never stops, even in the middle of a pandemic.

Yes, these are challenging and uncertain times, but Atlantic Cape is working hard to assist each and every student to achieve their goals. Registration is open — in-person (with a mask, of course) or online — by visiting atlantic.edu/register. Classes start Aug. 31 with late start classes Sept. 21. Pick a class or two, and begin your journey.

Barbara Gaba, of Mays Landing, is president of Atlantic Cape Community College.

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