Public 2-Year Schools

RCBC: Opens Junior-Year Courses & Announces New ‘3+1’ Programs


Community college students can now register for junior-year courses at Rowan College at Burlington County (RCBC) and will have even more “3+1” options next fall as RCBC and Rowan University continue to improve one of the nation’s most affordable paths to a bachelor’s degree.

RCBC is the first community college in the region to offer junior-year courses that begin in spring 2017.

Students who have an associate degree, or are scheduled to receive one in December, can now stay at RCBC for a third year under the “3+1” options. The program will debut in January with three programs: criminal justice, liberal studies (with a concentration in philosophy, and law and justice) and biology.

To read more stories about RCBC, scroll down:

RCBC Human Services Student Receives National Scholarship
Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio Officially Opens Premier Advanced Manufacturing Training Center Created by a Partnership with RCBC, BCIT and Rowan University

With “3+1,” students can pay RCBC’s lowest-in-the-state tuition and fees through their junior year before completing their senior year with Rowan University, which offers a 15 percent discount to RCBC alumni who take courses through the university online or in Mount Laurel. This path allows students to save $75,000 compared with most four-year colleges and was one of Money Magazine’s top tuition discount programs in the country.

“The future of affordable higher education has arrived in southern New Jersey,” RCBC President Paul Drayton said. “‘3+1’ is so much more than four. It offers a real solution to the high costs of college by providing students more savings, more high-quality education from two outstanding institutions and more convenience with the most seamless transfer to a university possible.

“The only things you won’t get in this program are outrageously high tuition and student debt,” Drayton added.

3+1 will expand in fall 2017 to include nursing, psychology, general studies, and computing and informatics. The college also announced it has had preliminary discussions to add several new 3+1 programs in the future that may include business administration, mechanical engineering technology with a focus on advanced manufacturing, elementary education and computer science.

“‘3+1’ is quickly growing not only in numbers, but in the quality of the programs and their relevancy to the workforce,” Rowan University President Dr. Ali A. Houshmand said. “We are very pleased to present the ‘3+1’ option to hardworking students and families who deserve high-quality education without high costs and student debt.”

‘3+1’ was recently featured in a report by the state’s College Affordability Commission that was charged with identifying ways to make college more affordable.

“Rowan College at Burlington County is ahead of the curve in leading the way to affordable education in Burlington County and throughout the region,” said Burlington County Freeholder Mary Ann O’Brien, an RCBC alumna. “Many of our residents are already benefiting from the partnership between RCBC and Rowan University. The expansion of ‘3+1’ will provide those great educational benefits to even more families.”

3+1 is available for students who are currently enrolled, new or transferring from another college. The program can be incorporated into a part-time schedule.

rcbc_studentscholarshipRCBC Human Services Student Receives National Scholarship

Rowan College at Burlington County (RCBC) Human Services student Heather Casparro earned the Harold McPheeters Scholarship from the National Organization for Human Services (NOHS).

Casparro, from Mount Laurel a student member of the NOHS is the first RCBC student to receive this award and was chosen over students working on their bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

“Heather has stood out in the classroom and in the community, both at the college and her work for community service organizations. She has truly earned this achievement,” RCBC President Paul Drayton. “She is another example that the students and education at Rowan College at Burlington County are on par, and often better, with those at four-year institutions.”

The scholarship, named after the founder of human services education in the United States, is awarded annually to those who have demonstrated successful work in human services where they have been acknowledged by others to be respectful of and dedicated to their clients as well as possessing interpersonal skills that are evident with colleagues in the workplace.

“Heather is an outstanding student who excels academically,” said RCBC Assistant Professor Brina Sedar. “She is an active member of many clubs and organizations, the Human Services Club, NOHS, the N.J. chapter of National Association for Social Workers and the RCBC Kiva lending team, just to name a few. She highlighted in her application how her Human Services coursework has helped her advocacy work.”

Casparro is a proud mother, wife, full-time student and child advocate volunteer. She plans to graduate in May and use the scholarship at Rowan University.

“I am so humbled and honored to be selected for this award, which wouldn’t be possible without the support of my outstanding faculty and classmates at Rowan College at Burlington County,” Casparro said. “This scholarship will help me continue at Rowan university and enable me to go beyond the limits of volunteering and achieve my career goal of increasing social harmony.”

Casparro thrives in helping others and hopes to extend her abilities professionally. RCBC has allowed her to build an academic foundation in the Human Services field and incorporate her volunteer work into her education. The Human Services program continues to be her stepping stone in working with a diverse population of child welfare. She is also very eager to further her education inside and outside the classroom.

Some of her accomplishments include:

•Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Volunteer for the Burlington County Family Courts
•Phi Theta Kappa (4.0 GPA)
•Intern at the New Jersey State Parole Board
•Student level membership for the National Organization of Human Services
•Student level membership for the National Association of Social Workers
•Senator of the RCBC Student Government
•Member of the Philadelphia Prison Society
•Member of the RCBC Kiva Lending team
•RCBC Foundation scholarship recipient
•RCBC Human Services Club
•Volunteer with Toys for Tots
•In the process of being inducted into Tau Upsilon Alpha, the national human services honor society.


BCIT Board of Education President Robert C. Silcox, Burlington County Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio, RCBC President Paul Drayton and BCIT Superintendent Dr. Christopher Nagy.

Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio Officially Opens Premier Advanced Manufacturing Training Center Created by a Partnership with RCBC, BCIT and Rowan University

Burlington County Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio officially opened a new Advanced Manufacturing Center located at the Burlington Institute of Technology in partnership with Rowan College at Burlington County (RCBC), that will become the region’s premier educational center.

RCBC, in partnership with Rowan University, recently earned a $770,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to develop the region’s premier advanced manufacturing educational center. The center was also supported by a contribution from Westampton-based Inductotherm.

“This Advanced Manufacturing Center puts Burlington County at the forefront in providing skilled workers to fill the many high-paying advanced manufacturing positions that are available today in this sector,” Freeholder Director Bruce Garganio said. “This is also a message to businesses that through our Workforce Development Institute, we can work together to create solutions to keep your business in Burlington County and throughout the region growing.”

The training, which also includes the Burlington County Institute of Technology (BCIT) and the college’s Workforce Development Institute as partners, will be driven by the needs of local advanced manufacturing employers.

The associate degree will provide a key link between the BCIT’s new Advanced Manufacturing program at the Medford campus, where students are positioned to earn the National Institute of Metal Working Skills (NIMS), Level I & II credential assessments and Rowan University’s renowned engineering programs. Next fall, RCBC will offer Mechanical Engineering with a certificate in advanced manufacturing on the Mt. Laurel campus.

The grant will also lead to certificates for students interested in working toward a career or people already in the career looking to develop new skills.

“All the stars have aligned to transform Burlington County into the premier advanced manufacturing center in our region,” RCBC President Paul Drayton said. “Advanced manufacturing provides some of the higher salaries in the workforce and we will provide all the tools needed for residents to enter, advance and flourish in this growing industry from high school through associate and bachelor’s degrees.”

Rowan University’s Mechanical Engineering program will be heavily involved in implementing the program in coordination with industry leaders.

“This is a perfect example of how our partnership can fuel innovation and drive the regional economy,” Rowan University President Dr. Ali Houshmand said. “Advanced manufacturing is a critical piece to the state’s economic future and we will provide the best training programs possible for this growing field in a great collaboration among educational institutions and the manufacturing sector that will create new and affordable degree programs.”

Advanced manufacturing training has already begun at BCIT. Thirty-three students have engaged in the exploration of the four-year program in Advanced Manufacturing and Fabrication. In addition, the college’s Workforce Development Institute is partnering with BCIT’s Adult Education Division for adults who are interested in entering this field. The initial six-week training program will begin in January.

“Advanced manufacturing is one of the seven talent networks identified by the Department of Labor as one of the in-demand industries in New Jersey and grows more important every day as technology advances,” BCIT Superintendent of Schools Dr. Christopher Nagy said. “We’re proud to be at the forefront of what will surely become the region’s premier advanced manufacturing training center.”

The grant also provides funding for improvements to the college’s Electronic Engineering Technology program. The National Science Foundation previously awarded the college a grant in 2007 that focuses on this area and RCBC and BCIT recently partnered on a program that provides high school students the opportunity to earn 30 credits toward an Electronic Engineering Technology degree before college.

“We are proud that the National Science Foundation recognizes the quality of our work and our ability to create programs that can be replicated throughout the country,” said RCBC Senior Vice President and Provost Dr. David Spang, who led the grant writing effort and will also lead its implementation as principal investigator. “With the assistance of our many talented partners, Rowan College at Burlington County is committed to fulfilling the vision of this grant, which is to create programs that benefit students and meet the needs of employers in a growing sector.”