Providing opportunities for individuals from other countries to develop leadership, professional skills and English language proficiency, while studying at a community college in the United States
Exchange participants are arriving at Northern Virginia Community College’s Annandale and Alexandria campuses, two of 17 campuses across 11 states, to begin the 2015-2016 Community College Initiative (CCI) Program. The CCI Program is a program of the U.S. State Department that provides participants with quality educational study at U.S. community colleges and is designed to build technical skills, enhance leadership capabilities, and strengthen English language proficiency. Northern Virginia Community College administers the CCI Program in partnership with eight institutions that make up the Community College Consortium (CCC). The largest of three host consortia, the CCC will host 140 of 233 CCI participants, 30 at NOVA, for the upcoming program year.
Participants pursue educational study focused on one-year certificate programs in workforce development fields. The CCI program also provides opportunities for professional internships, service learning, and community engagement activities. After completing the program, participants return home with a deeper understanding of U.S. culture and new skills to help them contribute to the economic growth and development of their countries.
CCI participants also contribute to their U.S. host communities by helping U.S. community colleges to internationalize their campuses. According to 2012-2013 Open Doors Report, only 1% of U.S. community college students will gain 21st-century international experience and workforce skills through study abroad. CCI exchange participants engage community college students with international cultures and diverse perspectives in their U.S. classrooms and on their home campuses. CCI participants will study in Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Since 2007, the CCI Program has hosted more than 2,350 participants from 20 countries. This year, CCI participants are from Bangladesh, Brazil, Colombia, Cote d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Pakistan, South Africa, and Turkey. The CCI Program recruits participants from underserved and unrepresented communities, particularly women.
For further information, please contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at email@example.com.
CCIP 2014-2015 Alumni Achievements:
The 2014-2015 Cohort departed only two months ago (May 2015), but that hasn’t stopped these eager alumni from continuing to thrive and challenge themselves. Here are just a few examples of the great accomplishments of our newest alum – remember, it has been only 2 months since they left!
Since departing Bunker Hill Community College where he was studying Entrepreneurship, Ilyas has been working with Center for Research & Security Studies (CRSS) as a Program Coordinator. With CRSS, he is handling Harnessing Future Leaders Program, which is a youth leadership skills development project, coordinating all activities to build knowledge, understanding and organizational capacity in issues that are pre-requisites of social peace and harmony (peace building and tolerance of diversity), rule of law, rights and responsibilities, conflict-prevention and mitigation through the provision of CB trainings (capacity building). Ilyas has also joined “Media House” Pakistan as a consultant of communication and outreach and as a volunteer with PEAD foundation for training facilitations. “This program [CCIP] has changed my life completely, my way of thinking, my way doing work, my way of taking decisions, my way dealing with PR, has totally changed and I am no more that Ilyas, that was an year ago before attending this program. I have improved a lot, which makes and keeps me happy.”
Since departing Northern Virginia Community College where she was studying Public Safety, Suborna has become an ambassador at her University and a counselor for the other students who also want to be successful. She will also be joining an NGO as part of the World Health Organization (WHO) very soon. With the various service learning opportunities that Suborna received in the United States, she has been have inspired to gather a group of friends as teachers for a community outreach initiative offering education to children living on the streets. “Coming in USA was a dream come true situation and has changed me surprisingly in a good way.”
Since departing Northern Virginia Community College where he was studying Business Management, Zeeshan has continued to work with his father on their family wedding planning business and has started his own event management business. His new venture has kept him very busy, organizing few big party events where the chief guest for one of them was the state chief minister Mamata Banerjee (Chief Minister of West Bengal) along with many other leading politicians. Zeeshan is also working with the US Consulate on spreading awareness about exchange programs in different communities, particularly CCIP – inviting students from various communities and organizations to provide programmatic information. Zeeshan has been selected as the main speaker for this program.
Since departing Scottsdale Community College in Arizona where she completed a certificate in Graphic Design and Business, Arooba is utilizing her acquired skills by designing a brand new website which will provide different mediums of Design as Graphic Design, Web Design, Video Edits and Advertising Concepts. The premise behind the website is to become an online service advertising agency and expand it to much more. The uniqueness of her approach is that her online agency will provide workshops of different mediums to the younger generation and will also help youth who cannot afford to learn these mediums on their own. If that weren’t enough, Arooba is mentoring youth in making a decision about future career choices and teaching English language. “This program and the time I have spent in United States has changed a lot in me, my perception, my way of dealing with different people from different cultures, my vision has expanded and the most important thing is that I don't see anything impossible any more, I believe that I can achieve my dreams and the people of U.S had made me believe on that. I feel very honoured to be a part of this program and loving to help my community as much as I can.”
Since departing Northern Virginia Community College where she studied Public Safety and held a coveted internship with the Arlington County Department of Emergency Management where she worked with both the Fire and Police Departments, Novi returned to greater responsibility. Now the supervisor in the Command Center (911 Office), Novi’s take charge attitude, work ethic and determination will definitely guide her long in achieving her long term goals. “I never finish[ed] my college or university before, that’s why I cannot complaint when I [had] been stuck [for] 4 years in the same position as a lead hand [in] my department after work[ing] for 10 years. But right now, everything was totally changing here, they always ask my opinion because I [have] more education on Fire Science than anyone in my Department, I believe that Education can change everything in our life! Stop dreaming if you can’t pursue your dream, Get up and jump to makes your dream come true.”
Since departing Scottsdale Community College where he was studying Media, Jalaluddin was expected to join a media organization and work in the news industry to continue on the path he was on prior to embarking on the CCIP journey. “But I found myself open and looking for something new every day in my life. Peacemaking, conflict resolution and conservation of natural resources are some among my interests in journalism and I believe none of Pakistani media organizations will hire me to work on my interests.” With the odds stacked up against him, Jalaluddin found a job opportunity with the Himalayan Wildlife Foundation, working on conservation of natural resources and wildlife protection and national park management. His new job has exposed him to research opportunities about the conflict between indigenous communities and conservation agencies. The protected areas he visits are aimed to protect endangered species of flora and fauna. Communities have serious concerns about conservation strategies and there is ongoing conflict. Jalaluddin is working to develop an comprehensive report on conflict between culture and conservation and development a strategy for peacemaking, conflict mitigation and to create awareness about conservation of natural resources. Naturally, his camera follows him to every new adventure. When this project comes to an end, Jalauddin will join a USAID funded advocacy campaign on education as a project coordinator. Impressive!
Since departing Bunker Hill Community College where he was studying Public Safety, Muhammad has returned to Bangladesh to work with TraumaLink as a researcher utilizing his extensive experiences, speaking engagements and volunteering from his time in the United Sates. During his CCIP year, Muhammad kept himself busy and engaged in the community. He completed over 300 volunteer hours, met with state officials and interned at both the American RedCross and the Commission for the Elderly. In addition to his new position, Muhammad continues his voluntary work back in his home country. “I would recommend this program to every one for changing existent knowledge of world or other cultures.”
Having studied Business at Miami Dade College, Nida’s commitment for community service and social issues particularly with regards to women and youth empowerment, has steered her in a very rewarding direction. Since her return, Nida has started working for the promotion of social entrepreneurship. She started a local project on "Promotion of Women Empowerment Resources" (POWER) in her hometown of Rawalpindi, Pakistan in which she hopes to expand at national and ultimately international levels. She has been selected for the "Youth Tech Camp 2015" where she will be privileged to learn the use of technology for entrepreneurship. She is also working as a volunteer Grants Officer for Pakistan Youth Organization (PYO).
After completing his Business Management Certificate, earning an Excellence Under the Stars award and being included in the President's Honors List at Scottsdale Community College, JuIian returned to Brazil to deal with record-high unemployment rates, being an only child living with two retired parents, having to seek out job opportunities to help support the family and the long trek to finish a degree in International Business / Foreign Trade. However, despite these daunting challenges that lie before him, Julian remains optimistic. “With the completion of the CCIP program, I feel immensely motivated and prepared to overcome any obstacles I may face on the brutally competitive job market and dire economic status of my home country. I am a hard-working, creative and innovative young man that is on the top of his game, and will find ways to keep learning and improving my technical and soft skills to be the most productive at work, and to develop social entrepreneurism and small business endeavors, not only to achieve my personal and professional goals, but also to make the people that helped me the most feel proud and most importantly, to provide help for the ones who need the most."
UPDATE: Just one day after submitting the above story, Julian has been granted an opportunity to participate in the USBE Alumni (U.S. Brazil Exchange Alumni) 2015 Summit, called Mentes em Movimento (Minds in Motion) to be held in Brasilia DF (Brazil's capital) in August! “I am grateful and feeling blessed to be able to attend this amazing event, and specially honored to be representing his CCIP 2014-15 group of amazing Brazilian and international students. Young and brilliant minds will share their experience with their fellow friends and colleagues spread throughout the world and I am beyond excited and motivated to share his experience and his ideas with them all!”
Since departing Scottsdale Community College where she was studying Business, Rohina received an offer from a consultancy for foreign studies named BREEO International to work with them as foreign studies consultant. She is the regional head for four regions Islamabad(Capital), Rawalpindi(city), KPK(province) and Gilgit Baltistan (another province). “It’s a great way to learn more about scholarships and studies in other countries,” Rohina says.
Since returning home from Mesa Community College where she studied Business, Javeria has been busy! She is volunteering with Pak-US Alumni Network on various projects and has been selected for the Youth Tech Camp by US Embassy, and has volunteered with the Centre for Peace and Development initiative in writing a policy draft for minorities of Pakistan. “I feel myself totally a different person. I am more open to learning and exploring.”
Since returning from Northern Virginia Community College where she studied Tourism, Anneke has been utilizing the innumerable connections she made as the networking guru of the group. Anneke founded a social enterprise called Java Nira, focusing on sustainable tourism development within communities in 2011. She used her time in the US, to seize every opportunity to develop a network for Java Nira. These connections created valuable lessons to make her organization more successful. After returning to Indonesia, she has resumed her work with local communities by developing sustainable destinations. She is working with 2 village partners and 8 non-profit organizations in empowering communities' economic sustainability as well as preserving the culture and minimizing impact from tourism activities.
For the 2015-2016 Program Year, the Community College Consortium is excited to welcome two new partner institutions to join our growing consortium! Kirkwood Community College and Northampton Community College will join our six partner institutions (nine campuses) to offer CCI participants an exciting and rigorous year.
Kirkwood Community College is committed to international education as a core component of our campus. Kirkwood is an experienced international education provider having hosted thousands of international students for the past forty years and having a dedicated and experienced International Programs department with committed staff and faculty. Kirkwood’s International Programs departmental vision is that every Kirkwood faculty, staff and student have an intercultural experience as an integral part of their Kirkwood education. To accomplish this, Kirkwood is involved in a diverse array of international projects including student mobility. Kirkwood sends faculty and students overseas for educational exchange opportunities and welcomes students from over 70 different nations providing extensive services to meet their needs. Kirkwood currently enrolls over 400 international students with a total enrollment of 15,000 students. Kirkwood has enjoyed hosting many sponsored international students including CCI students for 6 years, as well as Tunisian CCI students for the past 3 years. Each international student offers a new cultural perspective that enriches of classrooms and college environment.
For more information about Kirkwood Community College please visit: http://www.kirkwood.edu/
For over 20 years, NCC’s Center for International Education has provided a full array of social, cultural, and emotional supports to international students studying at the Bethlehem, PA campus. As one of the few community colleges with residential living facilities, NCC hosts over 120 international students each semester and each summer hosts an international ESL and American Culture program for international college students who will go on to study at community colleges throughout the United States. NCC has hosted students through U.S. Department of State programs such as the Community College Initiative (CCI) and Global UGRAD. NCC participated in the Community College Initiative (CCI) from 2009-2013, hosting more than 80 CCI students. In addition, NCC had provided the pre-academic international ESL and American Culture program for CCI students who went on to study at other community colleges. International students at NCC are an active part of the campus community and are encouraged to participate in extracurricular events, clubs and community organizations. International staff provide an early and intrusive series of support interventions carried out by experienced and dedicated personnel. These interventions include personal/career counseling, “intrusive” advising, close monitoring of classroom performance and extracurricular involvement, English language acquisition, and service-learning opportunities, all delivered in a caring and secure environment, conducive to trust building.
For more information about Northampton Community College please visit: https://www.northampton.edu/
On Friday, May 15, 2015, twelve students from seven countries celebrated the culmination of a year of hard work at Bunker Hill Community College. They came to Boston from countries as far-flung as Bangladesh, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, South Africa and Turkey. The students were part of a U.S. State Department program called the Community College Initiative Program (CCIP) aimed at promoting partnerships and resource sharing among global communities.
Vilma M. Tafawa, Executive Director of the International Center, opened the program, and students were recognized for the successful completion of the program by President Pam Eddinger, Associate Vice President Janice M. Bonanno, and Interim Dean of Mathematics, Behavioral and Social Sciences Maria Puente. Leeza Fernand, Associate Director of International Students and Sponsored Programs at Northern Virginia Community College, was on hand to greet and congratulate the students.
Students spent the year taking classes, meeting members of the Boston community and gaining practical experience through internships. The group completed more than 1,600 hours of volunteer service at Boston organizations that included the American Red Cross, City Year, GLAD, Habitat for Humanity and the Prison Books Program. Students also interned at the City of Chelsea, the Commission on Affairs of the Elderly, Jumpstart, the Tenants’ Development Corporation and Touch 106.1 FM.
It was graduate Molwanwta Letlhake’s first time traveling outside of South Africa. While at BHCC, he became a member of the College’s Entrepreneurship Club. “I love Bunker Hill Community College for giving students the best education and the utmost support,” he said. “My professors enjoyed their job. They were friendly and supportive, and I could see that they valued education more than anything.”
The graduates included five students from Pakistan: Naila Amin, Muhammad Illyas, Arifa Karim, Muhammad Khan and Usman Siddiqui; two students from Indonesia: Ongky Lay and Jean Rahmadan; one student from Turkey, Perimsu Bayrak; one student from Colombia, Luz Benitez Martinez; one student from India, Adele Creado; one student from Bangladesh, Muhammad Ferdaus; and one student from South Africa, Mowantwa Letlhake.
View more photos from the CCIP Ceremony on the Ceremony Highlights page.
Our logo is the culmination of CCIP participants coming together to design a logo that represents their program. A competition was held, and the insignia you see above, won the prize! The focal point of the design are the three C’s intertwined with one another – and stand for Community College Consortium. Within each ‘C’ a primary element of the program is represented = Education, Community and Understanding – three pillars of CCIP intertwined with one another to create an enriching, once-in-a-lifetime experience for the participants. And lastly, the color selected, represent the most dominant common flag color in the represented countries.