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A Newsletter for Alumni, Parents, and Friends of Greenfield Community College and the GCC Foundation

“Be More Than Just A Graduate: Be An Alum”

Posted on Thursday November 21st 2013


In his remarks at the GCC Class of 2013 Graduation Rehearsal, Erik Risinger ’13 urged his fellow graduates/soon-to-be-alumni to stay connected to their college.

risingerFollowing are his words:

“Ladies and Gentlemen,

I’d like to direct your attention for a moment to the fact that you are about to leave GCC. Which, if you’re like me, is both awesome and scary. And I would further ask that you consider for a moment what it means to be not just a graduate of GCC, but an alum.

Like a lot of people, I came to GCC with zero sense of direction. When I first enrolled I signed up for three classes: psychology, botany, and music theory. That’s how lost I was. It took a long time, a lot of credits, and a lot of dead ends, but the moment I sat down to work on my first Java programming project, I knew: Computer Science was what I had come here looking for. I am endlessly grateful to GCC for allowing me the time and space to find myself, and I am certain that nowhere else would I have found the support of so many people willing to guide me down pathway after pathway – for as long as it took – until I had found my direction.

If you are anything like me, you are not the same person today that you were when you came. You have been transformed – into a fuller, wiser, more confident version of yourself. That is GCC’s gift to you.

How do you return the favor? Easy: be more than just a graduate: be an alum. Stay active, stay connected, and stay involved. Know what’s going on with the school and be prepared to lend a hand in whatever way feels best to you. Participate in school events; be on a panel; donate your time, your experience, or someday – in the near future, when you’re loaded – your money. These are all of real value to GCC. And they’re all ways of showing that you aren’t just a graduate of some two-year school somewhere in Western Massachusetts: you are an alumnus or an alumna of Greenfield Community College.

Thank you.”

Erik transferred to the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and is currently enrolled in the Computer Science Program. He demonstrates the values he encouraged his classmates to adopt at Rehearsal that night by continuing to volunteer on campus this year at GCC as a Peer Tutor.

To learn more about how you can be connected and make a difference in many ways to your community’s college, call 413-775-1600

GCC receives VIP treatment from Springfield Armor


GCC President Bob Pura hosted a great evening of “GCC Night at the Springfield Armor” with a road trip on March 21st to a basketball game at the Mass Mutual Center. Members of our community joined GCC alumni and employees for a wonderful night of VIP treatment, including reserved courtside seating, dinner and great camaraderie while watching this area’s minor league basketball team play to win. This sold-out game was the Springfield Armor’s final home game of the season.

GCC Art Program: Welcome to “Face Nook”


For the past 5 years, an anonymous donor has supplied a $100 award to a GCC painting student each semester to be used to purchase painting supplies. In return, the students have created a miniature self-portrait on a canvas supplied by the donor. Award recipients are art program majors, nominated by the painting faculty, who have demonstrated a commitment to the medium and are producing work of a high standard. We are pleased to announce two exciting opportunities related to this initiative:

1. A collection of these mini portraits will now be offered for sale as part of a unique fundraising exhibit to benefit GCC’s Art Department, hosted by Nina’s Nook in Turners Falls in November 2014.

2. In addition to the existing collection, current and former painting students of the college are also invited to submit their work in this event using 6″ square canvases. The exhibit, to be called “Face Nook,” will open November 14 and close December 6. All work must be delivered to Nina’s Nook by November 5, either in person to the gallery or shipped to: Nina Rossi, 21 Central St, Turners Falls MA 01376. For details contact Nina Rossi,