Brunswick – On Tuesday, April 23rd, poetry lovers will have the opportunity to enjoy well-known and not so well-known local poets reading their own work at the Southern Maine Community College Midcoast Campus. The events will be called Poetry and Popcorn. There will be two separate sessions, an afternoon session at 1:00 and an evening session at 6:30. Both are open and free to the public. Each event will include an hour of poetry followed by a popcorn reception. The College chose to offer popcorn because the Midcoast students have fallen in love with their movie theatre popcorn machine and they request popcorn at every event.
The poets for the afternoon program include award-winning poet Jim Thatcher, along with Paul Dostie, Elizabeth Potter and members of the Wiscasset Adult and Community Education Program Writing Circle. The poets for the evening program include Helene McLaughlin, Joyce Pye, Maryli Tiemann, Margie Kivel, and two talented SMCC student poets.
The Poetry and Popcorn events will take place in the Hannaford Auditorium in the Academic Building on the SMCC MidcoastCampus at Brunswick Landing. For directions or more information contact Nancy Collins at 844-2064 orNCollins@smccME.edu. Directions to the campus are available at http://www.smccME.edu/midcoast.
Wiscasset Adult & Community Education has a program that makes it easy to take high-quality, noncredit online courses. Wiscasset Adult Education has partnered with ed2go to offer hundreds of online, instructor-led courses and is pleased to announce the launch of Introduction to Microsoft Word 2011 for Mac.
Participants in this course will learn how to use the world's most popular word processor for creating documents and formatting text, now available on the Macintosh. They'll master tips and techniques for editing and formatting documents, adding images, sharing documents, and much more.
This course is part of Wiscasset Adult Ed's growing catalog of more than 300 instructor-facilitated online courses. Through well-crafted lessons, expert online instruction, and interaction with fellow students, participants in these courses gain valuable knowledge at their convenience. They have the flexibility to study at their own pace combined with enough structure and support to complete the course. And they can access the classroom 24/7 from anywhere with an Internet connection.
New sessions of each course run every month. They last six weeks, with two new lessons being released weekly (for a total of 12). The courses are entirely Web-based with comprehensive lessons, quizzes, and assignments. A dedicated professional instructor facilitates every course; pacing learners, answering questions, giving feedback, and facilitating discussions.
To learn more, call Wiscasset Adult & Community Education at (207) 882-9710 or visit them online at www.MyAdultEd.org.
Posted by Anne Fensie on January 22, 2013 | Read more in: News
Martha is a student at Wiscasset Adult & Community Education in the career training program.
I turned to Adult Education to refresh my skills after a divorce and being out of the workforce to raise my children. Wiscasset Adult Ed isn't the closest location to me, but it is the location that answered the phone with a friendly greeting and supportive help instead of an answering machine.
I was ready to grow and Wiscasset Adult Ed was ready to help me. The positive, uplifting confidence of the staff encouraged me to sign up for the Office Skills Certificate Program that refreshed my computer skills, and later for the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant program. Once again, there was support in the form of a payment program to make tuition more affordable.
The free WorkReady Program was better than $10,000.00 worth of therapy for discovering who I was, what my goals were, and what I had to offer the workplace in the form of the varied experiences that a mature worker has to offer. In the WorkReady Program we wrote our resumes and participated in mock interviews with actual companies in our area. Field trips to visit local businesses helped to make what we were learning practical and relevant.
Realizing that classes kept students away from home during some meal times and that money is an issue on a limited budget, they even thought to have nourishing snacks on a donation basis to keep us going.
It’s never too late to get started on a new career. If you have been thinking about making a change in your life, go ahead and call the friendly and supportive staff at Wiscasset Adult Education. It could be the call that changes your life.
Posted by Anne Fensie on December 27, 2012 | Read more in: News
Black Friday... Small Business Saturday... Cyber Monday... Get back to basics and in the spirit of the holidays by putting your time and attention into lovingly crafted handmade gifts. With twelve days of Christmas crafts, there is something for everyone! Spend an evening or two—or twelve!—out with friends in a supportive and relaxing environment, creating memories and gifts.
Wiscasset Adult & Community Education is offering a new crafting workshop every night for twelve nights in December. Each of these “Twelve Days of Christmas” will provide an opportunity for friends and strangers to join together in creating their own homemade holiday gifts. Each workshop costs $15 (plus materials, if applicable). Register for more than one and get the 4th night free (use Promo Code XMAS). Classes meet 6:00 – 9:00pm at Wiscasset High School. Call 882-9710 or visit www.MyAdultEd.org to register.
1st Day of Christmas:
Participants will be creating a wreath (approximate value from $15-$50 or more) in an unconventional way, using multiple types of evergreens. Some materials will be provided, but participants are encouraged to bring their own evergreen materials that they may have from their gardens, like holly, cypress, juniper, fir, scotch pine or other pines, holly berries, rose hips, ornamental crab apples, pine cones, or other natural materials to add color and texture.
2nd Day of Christmas:
Join in on the holiday fun! Come learn how to make a Retro Holiday Wreath. You will learn this easy method of making a wreath, filled with hard candies, to keep and share with your holiday guests or give away as a hostess gift. No special skills necessary. You don't even have to be crafty to be successful with this!
3rd Day of Christmas:
4th Day of Christmas:
5th Day of Christmas: Personalized Coasters
Looking for a special gift to give to that person that's so hard to buy for? Come make an inexpensive set of coasters that will be personalized for your person. Think about what would be meaningful to them, photos of your children, a destination on a map, fashion design pictures, etc. Alternatively, you could make your coasters feature a collage of various materials. Bring your own materials or select from an assortment of provided images and materials.
6th Day of Christmas:
7th Day of Christmas:
8th Day of Christmas:
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10th Day of Christmas:
11th Day of Christmas:
12th Day of Christmas:
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Posted by Anne Fensie on November 26, 2012 | Read more in: Events
The Finance Authority of Maine (FAME) has awarded $889,277 in grants to twenty-two Maine schools and non-profit organizations through the Maine College Access Challenge Grant (MCACG) program, with $70,000 going to Wiscasset Adult & Community Education to serve adults in Lincoln and Sagadahoc Counties. The goal of MCACG is to increase the number of Maine students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education, with a focus on preparation, aspiration and success. The Wiscasset grant program has collaborated with University College Bath/Brunswick to develop Welcome Back College, a program specifically targeted at adults who began college but did not complete a degree.
According to the 2010 U.S. Census Survey of Income and Program Participation, college enrollment in Midcoast Maine is significantly lower than the state and nation, particularly in Lincoln County. While college enrollment rates in Maine and the United States are at around 27%, they are only 19% and 14.5% in Sagadahoc and Lincoln Counties, respectively. More than 10,000 residents in this area have some college experience but have not earned a degree. In contrast, the Maine Department of Labor anticipates that within this decade, more than two-thirds of job postings will require a college degree. Without a doubt, there is a largely untapped market of adults in this area who need to be reached for postsecondary completion.
It takes a great deal of courage for an individual to return to college after an extended absence. Many potential students embarking on the college re-entry process encounter various obstacles in their pursuit of higher education. Some have families and need to consider child care options, while others have time issues and financial concerns. Additional complications might include lower academic and study skill levels if the student has been out of school for some time. These obstacles can lead to a lack of confidence and frustration. Often, this is all it takes to deter these individuals from completing their degrees.
Welcome Back College provides a myriad of services to students re-entering the college environment, including two Personal Higher Ed Navigators, Vanessa Richards and Dawn Wheeler, who meet with students regularly to offer intensive support in a variety of areas. Some students benefit from study group sessions and peer networking. Others need help completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and college applications. Assistance is given in navigating distance learning technologies and strategies, including ITV, videoconferencing, Blackboard, Maine Street and hybrid programming. Other supports include retrieval of transcripts, prior learning assessment, and career decision making. Over the course of a semester, each student will receive an average of 20-25 hours of comprehensive services from these professionals at no charge.
Vanessa and Dawn offer flexible hours at both Wiscasset Adult Education and University College Bath/Brunswick, which students can access for support and guidance. Schedule an appointment or call with questions at 208-2703 for Vanessa or 208-6547 for Dawn. The Personal Higher Ed Navigators can also be reached by email at Vanessa@MyAdultEd.org and Dawn@MyAdultEd.org. For more information about all of the programs at Wiscasset Adult & Community Education call 882-9710 or visit www.MyAdultEd.org.
Posted by Anne Fensie on November 14, 2012 | Read more in: News
Themed Educational Tours of Midcoast Maine
Wiscasset Adult and Community Education has released their schedule of educational tours with a focus this fall on the many splendors of midcoast Maine. If you are hungry for adventure, day excursions include a Seafood Safari (September 22), Tour de Thrift (September 22), Winery Tour and Vinfest (September 29), and a Swine & Stein Oktoberfest Tour (October 13). These events are open to residents of any community, and participants are encouraged to register early as seats are filling quickly.
The fun begins on Saturday, September 22nd, with the Seafood Safari! Participants will travel comfortably in a Mercedes mini-coach, sample delicious seafood all day and learn the harvesting process that happens every day on the midcoast of Maine. You will even get to ride along on a lobster boat, enjoy the natural wonders of the coast and experience authentic lobstering. The day will end with a scrumptious meal at Waterman’s in South Thomaston! This trip departs from Wiscasset High School at 11:00 a.m. and returns at 8:00 p.m. The fee for this adventure is $175 per person.
If shopping is your thing, then the Tour de Thrift is for you. On Saturday, September 22nd, travel up and down the mid coast from Damariscotta to Falmouth with like minded bargain hunters. The group will be stopping at many of the well-known, and maybe some not so well-known, ladies’ consignment stores! Along the way, participants will play games and earn prizes that will add even more to their savings! Board the bus at Wiscasset High School at 8:00 a.m and return by 8:00 p.m. The fee for this extravaganza is $25 per person.
The following Saturday, September 29th, wine lovers can hop on the All Aboard Trolley Mini Coach for a Winery Tour and Vinfest! The tour will include stops at Fat Friar’s Meadery, Sweetgrass, Savage Oaks and Cellardoor wineries. Participants will delight in samples all along the way! Find your favorite varieties and try some new ones as well. The tour will end at the Cellardoor’s annual Vinfest where there will be grape-stomping, food and wine pairings, a BBQ, music, demonstrations and much more. Depart from Wiscasset High School at 11:00 a.m. and return at 5:00 p.m. The fee for this excursion is $95 per person.
Mark your calendars for the Swine and Stein Brewery Tour & Oktoberfest on Saturday, October 13th! Visits and sample some of Maine’s unique creations at regional breweries with a final stop in Gardiner for the Third Annual Swine and Stein Oktoberfest! Delicious beers. farm-to-table pork and live music will be enjoyed by all. The Oktoberfest includes dunk tanks, chicken flings, pony races and other merriment galore! Departure is at 11:00a.m. from Wiscasset High School and return is 5:00 p.m. The fee will be $95 per person.
Additional tours in October include a Fall foliage Getaway (October 20), a Coastal Nature Tour (October 6), and a Midcoast History Murder Mystery Tour (October 27).
Each year Wiscasset Adult and Community Education offers educational events and excursions that are designed to appeal to locals and visitors alike. These often include cultural experiences that one wouldn’t ordinarily embark upon on their own. With thoughtful planning and input from local experts, the staff at Wiscasset Adult and Community Education has created a mixture of lively opportunities that are sure to be of interest. To find out more about these events or to register, please call Wiscasset Adult & Community Education at 207-882-9710 or register online at www.MyAdultEd.org.
People take the Office Skills Certificate Program (OSCP) for many different reasons. In my case it was because the company I had worked at for 23 years moved its operation to Mexico. Having thought I would retire from there, I found myself instead having to think about re-entering a different work field.
I went to the Adult Education Office in Wiscasset where I met a great staff who helped me get started on the right path. After several discussions with them I decided I wanted to work in an office environment. Career change decided but no computer skills! This is where OSCP came into play.
I started the program which is self-paced, teacher lead, and involves many different aspects. Part of the course is typing 30 words per minute at the basic level and 50 words per minute at the advanced level without looking at the keys. It is a long road from 10 words per minute but with much practice I made it to 32 words per minute. So I guess 50 will soon come.
Learning the Microsoft Office Programs (Word, Excel, Access and PowerPoint) was fascinating to me. I couldn’t believe how much is out there to learn. My skills have increased tremendously! My favorite part of the course is accounting. I have always loved math and hope to work with financial records.
Another aspect of the program is the WorkReady Credential, which teaches you more about entering the work force. It teaches you how to write your resume and cover letters which are needed today to apply for jobs. They do on site visits to different places that give you an inside look at all the different jobs available. Mock interviews are done so you know what you are going to face in an interview, extremely helpful to me as I had not gone to one in over 20 years! I strongly urge anyone looking to find a job to take the WorkReady program.
The hands-on help from the instructors was very beneficial to me. The whole staff at Wiscasset Adult Ed, along with our program instructors, was willing to assist with anything I needed help with. I look forward to finishing this program soon and getting started on the Accounting Clerk Certificate.
I want everyone to know, it doesn’t matter your age—you can always learn more, and you may find it enjoyable.
Posted by Anne Fensie on December 30, 2011 | Read more in: News
On March 15, 2011, The American Council on Education (ACE) and Pearson announced the creation of a ground-breaking new business that will drive the future direction, design, and delivery of the GED® testing program based on their vision for the GED in the 21st century. Their press release explained that the three primary components of this initiative will include:
1. A new, more rigorous GED Test aligned with Common Core State Standards designed to ensure career- and college-readiness;
2. A national test preparation program featuring an expanding array of innovative and personalized learning resources; and,
3. A transition network that connects GED test-takers to career and postsecondary educational opportunities.
The need for higher standards is clear. With a labor market that increasingly seeks some postsecondary training, paired with dispiriting rates of high school and college completion, the future of our economy depends on creating a highly skilled, creative, and competitive workforce. This includes more intensive educational opportunities for the 40 million adults in the U.S. without a high school diploma.
Policy makers and the GED Testing Service are working to reposition the GED as a step in a journey toward postsecondary training, rather than as an end in itself. Epitomizing that shift in thinking, the new exam, due out in 2014, will have two passing points: the traditional one indicating high school equivalency, and an additional, higher one signaling college and career readiness.
"The message is that you’re not here just to get a high school equivalency and walk out. You’re here to get prepared for careers and educational opportunities that are going to demand that you have even more skills," explains Nicole Chestang, the executive vice president of the GED Testing Service.
According to the Maine Department of Education, the Common Core State Standards are a set of academic standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts, which includes literacy in history/social studies, science and technical subjects. The Common Core State Standards focus on developing college- and career-ready standards and ensuring these standards are evidence- and research-based and internationally benchmarked to top-performing countries.
For example, one of the ten reading standards for literacy in science and technical subjects on key ideas and details is outlined below based on age group.
1. Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts. (grades 6-8)
2. Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts, attending to the precise details of explanations or descriptions. (grades 9-10)
3. Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts, attending to important distinctions the author makes and to any gaps or inconsistencies in the account. (grades 11-12)
Let’s look at a sample question from the current version of the GED Science test. Answering this question correctly would demonstrate mastery of the above standard at the 6-8 grade level. Imagine how much harder this question will have to be to demonstrate mastery at the 11-12 grade level. In addition, all of the information needed to answer the question can be found in the reading passage itself, whereas the new version of the test will require background science knowledge.
There are many people in the area who have started taking the GED tests, yet have not completed all five to earn their High School Credential. Our program works hard to ensure the success of each student, as evidenced by the 85% passing rate of students who take the GED tests. Over the past three years, 760 students have enrolled in academic and career preparation programs at Wiscasset Adult & Community Education, 288 (38%) with the goal of earning a High School Credential. Of the students in the High School Completion Program, 145 (50%) students took at least one GED test, 122 (42%) students received passing scores, and 55 (19%) earned a High School Diploma. Obviously, there are many people that need to return to adult education to complete the remaining tests before 2014 to earn their High School Diploma.
"We’ve already begun the shift in using the GED as merely a stepping stone on the path to success, rather than a dead end," notes Anne Fensie, Director of Adult Education in Wiscasset. "Our local requirements for testing include completion of orientation, career advising, goal planning, student success skills, and significant academic preparation before registering to test. The recently released details about the 2014 version [of the GED] support the mission of our school district: to educate each and every student to the fullest of his/her potential, enabling them to participate fully as a productive and self-fulfilled member of a democratic society."
So, what does this mean for you if you don’t have a high school credential? If you wait until 2014 to get started on taking the GED tests, it will likely take longer to achieve your goal as you will be held to a higher standard. Most will need to get started now to be able to pass the new GED. It is also important to note that old scores will not transfer to the new version of the test. Beginning in 2014, anyone who has not earned their high school credential will have to take all of the new tests. Of course, the benefit of passing the new GED is that you and potential employers/schools will have proof that you are ready to succeed in college and more demanding, higher paying jobs. Our advice—get started now!
GED® and GED Testing Service® are registered trademarks of the American Council on Education (ACE). They may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of ACE or GED Testing Service. The GED® and GED Testing Service® brands are administered by GED Testing Service LLC under license from the American Council on Education.
Posted by Anne Fensie on December 26, 2011 | Read more in: News
Students are brought on-board in a comprehensive manner which includes an in-depth orientation. This orientation process affords each student the opportunity to acclimate to the world of adult education and increases their readiness to learn.
My experience has been that students come into the classroom with exuberance and eagerness to learn. Each student is valued as an individual, bringing their own strengths and challenges to their learning process. We solicit continual feedback from students in order to create a curriculum that interests the students and covers a broad range of topics.
It is an absolute pleasure and inspiration to work with these learners, providing them with a supportive environment from which they can grow.
Dawn teaches adult basic education in our Learning Center, high school completion classes, and the Family CIRC:LE. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at the adult ed office 882-9710.
Posted by Anne Fensie on July 18, 2011 | Read more in: News