In advance of the spring semester, Naugatuck Valley Community College welcomed more than 100 new students and their families to campus for an orientation session on January 19 on the College’s Waterbury campus. The event featured a welcome from administrators, faculty and staff; over a dozen information tables on various College services and activities; campus tours; and special programs for parents, covering topics ranging from financial aid to academic advising.
“This is the first day of the rest of your life,” said NVCC President Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Ph.D. “You have taken a decisive step towards a better future. What better place is there to be? NVCC– beautiful grounds, state-of-the-art facilities and the best and richest array of academic programs of all community colleges in Connecticut.”
“We take pride in our student-centered approach; student success is our expectation and we will work hard to make it so,” continued President De Filippis. “We also need for you to engage in a thoughtful and practical way in achieving your success. You will hear sound advice this evening, pay attention. Over three decades of experience in higher education have taught me that it is about discipline, persistence and hard work. Stay the course to build a better tomorrow.”
Professor William H. Foster III welcomed students and their parents on behalf of the College’s faculty. “I love what I do. I bring students to the table of knowledge,” he said. “I can’t make you drink but I can ask you questions … All you have to do is decide if you’re thirsty.” Members of NVCC’s faculty are 100 percent invested in students achieving their goals, said Foster.
Incoming students and their families were also greeted by the Dean of Student Services Sarah Gager, Dean of Academic Affairs Irene Rios-Knauf, Student Government Association President Katherine Abreu and NVCC Police Sergeant Jeff D’Alusio.
Later, students and parents separated into two groups. Parents participated in a “parent boot camp” and sessions on financial aid and disability services, while students were treated to giveaways and information on academic advising, tutoring and the NVCC library.
“You want to connect to other students to help you be successful,” said Bonnie Goulet, interim director of NVCC’s Center for Academic Planning and Student Success (CAPSS). “You also want to empower yourself with information—so if you don’t know how to do something, you want to find out who does.”
Spring semester classes at NVCC began on January 21. In the 2014-15 academic year, NVCC awarded 1,260 degrees and certificates.