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Maybe just to kid me, maybe because they do not know, but over the years I have regularly been told by friends and family that it “must be nice having the summer off.” I always smile back at them and remind them that Central Community College continues to be a very busy place even during the summer. Here are just a few examples:

Summer classes are still offered in person, video, online and individualized formats. Faculty have classes condensed into two-, three-, five-, eight- and more traditional 15-week formats. Almost 30 individuals are taking an accelerated basic welding workshop early this summer to help meet area employer needs. Nursing assistant classes are also full with over 70 students learning to help individuals in our area assisted living and medical facilities. Faculty are reviewing textbook or open educational resource materials for incorporating into their fall classes and getting training on the latest software, technology and learning management strategies.

Student services professionals are working to get new students here for new student orientations where they can register for fall classes and complete housing applications, payment plans and financial aid forms. Facilities staff are busy cleaning residence halls that have housed up to 150 young adults over the past eight months. We sometimes do not want to know what all they find! Additional classroom and lab repairs, refinishing of the gym floor, mowing and moving offices make for plenty of physical labor during the summer months.

This summer the coaches are leading several youth athletic camps in our six sports areas and the campus is hosting over 100 youth participating in the Mike Trader basketball skills camps. Speaking of camps, the extended learning services department will be hosting the Central Honors Institute, which brings almost 100 high-ability learners in grades seven and eight from across the state to Columbus. The week involves engaging learning activities in the areas of science, math, creative thinking and the environment. For those younger than the seventh grade, there are day camps throughout the summer in topics such as theater, improv, greenhouse gardening, health care and a new favorite — bugs.

Administrators are busy hiring full- and part-time faculty and staff, finalizing budgets and ordering supplies for the upcoming year. Summer is also a time for making schedule changes as classes fill or are canceled, conducting performance reviews, and writing and reporting on grants and program plans. Community outreach continues as well, since our facilities are used for children’s theater, driver safety classes, community or service club meetings, disc golf and donor and alumni visits.

So while the pace of activities does seem to slow a bit, the residence halls are a little less raucous, and there are more youth on campus than adults some days, the campus continues to remain a busy place. The sun stays out a little longer and it is sure nice not to worry about snow and ice, so maybe it is like having time off — but not quite.

Matt Gotschall is president of Central Community College-Columbus. He can be reached at mgotschall@cccneb.edu.

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