In November the Mount welcomed academic advisors from nearby community colleges for an Advisor Appreciation Breakfast. Not only was the event an opportunity for the University to say “thank you” to community college professionals who work hard to transition students from one school to another, but also to recognize the hardworking students who attend school while working full-time.

As the students shared their distinctive stories, a similarity threaded their narratives – the importance of family and how community colleges and the Mount not only celebrate education and career milestones, but also family and life events. So, how did these students get to the Mount? Here are a few stories from the event.

Anthony Baker“While deployed in Afghanistan I finally got the opportunity to earn my AA degree. When I returned home I enrolled at a local college to continue my studies, but eventually left because I didn’t feel I belonged. I found a new home at the Mount, where I am surrounded by adult learners and people who care about my success in college and in my life.”

Anthony Baker, C’16, Business
Staff Sargent, Maryland Army National Guard

Michelle Harsha“When my daughter was born, I figured I would go back to school when she began kindergarten. Then I realized if I started school now, I could be finished before she even started! It helps that now that I’m studying something I love, I love being back in the classroom.”

Michelle Harsha, C’ 16, Human Services
Missions Coordinator, The Word Among Us


Orlando Barros“I went the unconventional route to college, and no schools really fit until the Mount. When my daughter was born recently, I was able to share that with my classmates and professors. It’s awesome to share your life with the people here.”

Orlando Barros, C’17, Business
Director of Development, The Word Among Us


Shelly Lofland“Five years ago, my daughters were considering forgoing the college route. I decided to go back and finish my degree to set an example and prove the value to them. My daughter and I will both walk for graduation in May.”

Shelley Lofland, C’15, Business
Director of Operations, Clagett Enterprises


Cheryl Conconnan“I never thought I would go to school beyond earning my associate’s degree, but FCC and the Mount made it so easy for me to keep going and finish my bachelor’s, too.”

Cheryl Cocannon, C’16, Business
Office Manager, Frederick Community College



Student success starts with positive local partnerships between the Mount and community colleges. Sincere thanks is extended to Carroll Community College, Frederick Community College, Montgomery Community College, Anne Arundel Community College, the Community College of the Air Force, Central Texas College, and Hagerstown Community College for inspiring our students to take the first step – and then keep going!

Click here to learn more about adult undergraduate programs in business, criminal justice, elementary/special education, and human services.