JSCC Clanton graduates reflect on experience

Published 3:58 pm Friday, May 6, 2022

By JOYANNA LOVE | Managing Editor

The Chilton-Clanton campus of Jefferson State Community College recently held a reception for graduates ahead of the combined graduation ceremony on May 6.

Since this will be the only graduation ceremony for this school year, graduates from August 2021, December 2021 and May 2022 will be a part and were invited to the reception.

Some graduates from prior semesters, including Brooke Foster who completed her degree in December 2021, came back to campus for the reception.

“I have been in retail my whole career, so I just wanted something that would help me in anywhere I wanted to go with it,” business major Foster said. “It is also something I can use in personal life as well.”

Foster has worked at C&C Trophy for the past four years and said studying for the degree has helped her in her job.

Foster switched to online classes when she had children.

“It was definitely an adjustment because I am a hands-on type person,” Foster said.

Once she got used to them, Foster did well. Some of the classes had deadlines throughout the semester, which she preferred, while others were set up to have students work at their own pace and have everything completed by the end of the semester.

Some of this school year’s graduates are continuing their education, while others are starting their career.

Daniel Lynn, a biology major, will begin his studies at the University of Alabama Birmingham through its Bridges to Biomedical Sciences program this summer.

“I have had a really great experience at Jeff State,” Lynn said. “I started out at Jeff State in the dual enrollment program in high school.”

Lynn enjoyed having opportunities to have a closer relationship with his professors because of smaller class sizes. Even though classes were online, professors still made themselves available for one-on-one Zoom meetings with students.

“My physics professor ended up writing me a recommendation letter to UAB for a Presidential Scholarship, which I ended up receiving,” Lynn said.

The scholarship is only available SCC and Lawson State Community College students and covers the majority of tuition to UAB.

Because of the timing of Lynn’s time at JSCC being during the pandemic his classes have been online, except for two. The group was able to hold meetings through video conference calls.

At UAB, Lynn will be in a degree program that combines classes from computer science and biology.

His eventual plans are to be a doctor or a physician’s assistant.

Claea Bice, a physical therapy assistant major, plans to start working in her field right after graduation. This summer, she will be taking the National Physical Therapy Exam for physical therapy assistants.

“Next, my goal is to get a job in the Clanton community or surrounding areas, so that I can treat patients in my hometown,” Bice said.

Bice completed her prerequisites for the physical therapy assistant program at the Clanton campus.

She said the program at the JSCC Hoover campus was “very rigorous.” Students attend classes from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during their three semesters in the program.

“It has taken a lot of determination to get through,” Bice said.

A close relationship formed among the classmates.

While some courses were online, labs were able to meet in person, but masks were required.

Watching her brother and her mother go through physical therapy after injuries is what piqued Bice’s interest in the field.

During the recent reception, graduates were able to enjoy cake and conversation with college faculty.