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Hudson Valley Community College Set to Unveil New Computer Lab at Berlin Central School District

CONTACT: Sarah Boggess (518) 629-8073
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Wednesday, January 26, 2000

Continuing to expand its connections with local school districts, Hudson Valley Community College will unveil a new computer lab it has donated to the Berlin Central School District, Tuesday, February 1.

A dedication ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. in the high school library and Berlin High School students will be on hand to demonstrate the new computers.

"This is a continuation of our efforts to share resources with local school districts," said President John Buono. "We're happy to join forces with the administration from Berlin to help students get a head start on college."

The lab is an extension of Hudson Valley Community College's "College in the High School" program, which offers college-level courses in area high schools. The program has expanded exponentially over the past several years. More than 171 students in 13 schools are currently enrolled in college courses that are taught by adjunct instructors during the regular school day. The idea behind the program is to allow students to begin earning college credits while still in high school.

Twenty-one Pentium-level computers, including a teacher's console, have been installed at the eastern Renssealer County high school. The total cost of the computer lab is approximately $64,000.

"Our board of education and the community are appreciative of Hudson Valley Community College's willingness to extend this opportunity to the students of our school district," said Berlin Superintendent David Sicko.

During the current academic year, an enrollment of 83 Berlin High School students were scheduled to take Hudson Valley courses. College-level classes offered include: Spanish Language and Culture 4, Creative Writing and Poetry, Personal Computer Concepts and Applications and Interpreting Engineering Drawings. Classes in computer-assisted drafting will begin at the school in the fall, so the lab will be optimized with specialized software as well as a machine that can make three-dimensional model of students' work.

Each year, Berlin sends a large portion of its graduating class to Hudson Valley Community College. In 1998, for example, 42 percent of Berlin graduates moved on to continue their education at Hudson Valley. Only Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School sent a larger proportion.

Hudson Valley Community College recently expanded a similar computer lab it donated two years ago at Colonie Central High School. Plans are in the works to donate and site computer labs at schools in Rensselaer and East Greenbush.

Hudson Valley Community College, located in Troy, offers more than 50 degree and certification programs in four academic divisions: Liberal Arts and Sciences; Engineering and Industrial Technologies; Health Sciences; and Business; as well as the Educational Opportunity Center, which offers certification programs in workforce and academic preparation. One of 30 community colleges in the State University of New York system, it has an enrollment of more than 9,000 students each year, and is known as a leader in distance learning initiatives and worker retraining.