Howard Community College, Community Action Council Finalize Partnership to Reopen Campus Childcare Center

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Howard Community College, Community Action Council Finalize Partnership to Reopen Campus Childcare Center

Representatives from Howard Community College's Dental Hygiene program, along with mascot Duncan the Dragon, teach the importance of good dental hygiene to students in the Children's Learning Center during a visit in February 2020. HCC recently announced plans to reopen the campus-based childcare center in partnership with the Community Action Council of Howard County.
Representatives from Howard Community College’s Dental Hygiene program, along with mascot Duncan the Dragon, teach the importance of good dental hygiene to students in the Children’s Learning Center during a visit in February 2020. HCC recently announced plans to reopen the campus-based childcare center in partnership with the Community Action Council of Howard County.

Columbia, Maryland, April 22, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Howard Community College (HCC) President Daria J. Willis announced plans to reopen its on-campus Children’s Learning Center (CLC). In partnership with the Community Action Council of Howard County, the center’s reopening will serve as an essential resource in reducing childcare costs, creating much-needed Early Head Start programming for infants and toddlers, and encouraging degree completion among student parents at HCC.

“This is a really important day for our community and for dreams of children and their parents who understand education as a catalyst for generational change,” said Willis. “We could not be more grateful for the partnership of (Community Action Council President) Tracy Broccolino and the CAC, County Executive Calvin Ball, and so many other heroes and heroines who made this day possible. Young parents and their children will once again have a place on our campus to more comfortably work, grow, and dream towards their roles as leaders of our community and our world.”

The facility closed in 2020 during the pandemic and associated budget reduction efforts. In 2023, HCC was awarded a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to support re-opening its campus childcare center.

The grant is part of the federal Childcare Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) grant program and brings the college closer to re-establishing a critical support service for hundreds of student parents pursuing higher education in Howard County.

“For scholar-parents, childcare is perhaps one of the most critical determinants of whether they are able to persist in school,” said Howard County Executive Calvin Ball. “I’d like to applaud Dr. Willis and her team for recognizing this barrier and taking the necessary steps to ensure their scholar-parents have the support to thrive. Students can pursue their educational and career goals knowing they have a supportive community providing quality care to their children and walking with them in their journey to success.”

“Partnering with HCC to reopen the Children’s Learning Center enables both organizations to positively impact families and children for generations to come,” said CAC President, Tracy Broccolino. “We know that education makes a huge difference in enabling social and economic mobility for the entire family, and exceptional early childhood education puts children on a trajectory to lifelong success. CAC is proud of our longstanding relationship with HCC and the opportunity to partner in providing expanded whole-family support for HCC’s students and our community.”

More than 2,900 students enrolled at HCC during the last fiscal year received Pell Grant funding, with 24% of that group claiming child dependents. In addition to future childcare services, HCC currently supports student parents with designated study space in the college library, food pantry access, and a growing roster of classes with faculty members who welcome young children to be with parents during in-person classroom instruction.

ABOUT HOWARD COMMUNITY COLLEGE
Howard Community College was named in 2023 among the nation’s top two-year colleges by Niche, an online college selection and data resource for families. HCC ranked #92 among all two-year institutions and the top community college in the Baltimore metropolitan area. HCC enrolls more than 20,000 credit and non-credited students of all ages from more than 104 countries, yielding more than $343 million in economic impact as one of Howard County’s largest employers.

ABOUT COMMUNITY ACTION COUNCIL OF HOWARD COUNTY

Community Action Council of Howard County (CAC) is the designated non-profit antipoverty agency in Howard County, Maryland. Since 1965, CAC has worked to diminish poverty and enable self-sufficiency for all Howard County individuals, families, and children in need. CAC provides five core services: Early Childhood Education (Head Start and Pre-K); Food Assistance (Howard County Food Bank); Housing Assistance; Energy Assistance; and Weatherization Assistance.

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CONTACT: Jarrett Carter Howard Community College 443-518-1800 [email protected] 

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