Finding Your Future at Pathways to Technology
For individuals seeking a career or an education in technology, one Web site to explore should be Pathways to Technology. This site not only provides information about technology degree programs from community colleges around the country, but it offers an array of multimedia tools to provide information to prospective students, returning students, guidance counselors, educators and parents. On this site, one can find descriptions about common technological jobs available for graduates, information about technology fields and degree programs, answers to frequently asked questions about following this career path and access to a listing of community colleges. Additionally, Pathways to Technology offers a series of seven videos totaling 90 minutes, which display technology fields, current students, professors and successful graduates from community colleges across the country.
For colleges that wish to shine the spotlight on their technology programs, Pathways to Technology provides a recruitment tool kit, which contains multimedia resources—video, activities, and customizable print pieces—that colleges can use to enhance ongoing recruitment efforts. The kit also includes sample agendas and planning and publicity tips.
Partners of Pathways to Technology include the American Association of Community Colleges, the nation’s primary advocacy organization for community colleges, the National Science Foundation, an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering, and WGBH Boston, which is America’s preeminent public broadcasting producer and a pioneer in educational multimedia and in access technologies for people with disabilities.
Perhaps one of the most motivational aspects of the site is the portrayal of various success stories from community college graduates. Among these is the story of Roya Dirin, a woman who grew up in Iran, but came to America to pursue her dreams. While in Iran, Roya went to college, earned her bachelor’s degree, and worked as a midwife. With a solid background in biology, Roya enjoyed her job, but she was also interested in medical research, especially how drugs are developed and different treatments are discovered. When she was 30, Roya moved to the United States to be with her family and continue her education.
“At first, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do,” Roya admits. She started by taking English classes at Middlesex Community College, in Massachusetts, to become a more fluent English speaker. Soon after that, a friend’s excitement about the college’s biology program sparked Roya’s interest and introduced her to biotechnology.
“I had experience working with patients, but I had always wondered about the research that goes into treatments and cures. When I came here, I realized that biotech was the first step toward that goal. Going to community college was a good experience for me because I wasn’t just a student; I worked there. It gave me exposure to the kind of lab environment that I would eventually work in.” In two years, Roya graduated with her associate of applied science degree. Because biotech and pharmaceutical companies often recruit at Middlesex, Roya had a job offer before she graduated.Currently, Roya works at EMD Pharmaceuticals, a start-up company focused on cancer vaccine research. As an upstream processing associate, Roya’s job is to harvest and purify cells for needed proteins. “I really like my job. I get to be involved in cancer research, and be part of a team. Community college was a great first step to getting here.”
To see more inspirational success stories like these, and gain access to the other features that the Web site has to offer, visit Pathways to Technology today.