Public 2-Year Schools

Cumberland and Rowan Partner to Offer Support for STEM Majors

A collaboration between Cumberland County College and Rowan University will provide institutional support to help biology students make transitions at a critical stage in their development as scientists.

The Cumberland County College Bridge to Rowan (CB2R) program is funded through the National Institutes of Health. The program’s goal is to increase the baccalaureate completion of underrepresented, low-income Biomedical Science students who start at the community college level and are well prepared for biomedical research careers or graduate programs.

This comprehensive academic and mentoring program will provide students with academic, mentoring and research opportunities from their freshmen year at Cumberland County College through their graduation with the baccalaureate from Rowan University. The program will help to diversify the biomedical research workforce by bringing new perspectives, establishing important connections to diverse populations, and improving the results produced by this workforce.

“I am eager to team up with our partners at Rowan University,” said Dr. Mark Randa, Associate Professor of Science at Cumberland County College. “The Cumberland Bridge to Rowan program is an incredible opportunity for both the students and the faculty at Cumberland. For the first time, students on our campus will be participating in authentic research with the possibility of publishing. This grant will provide our students a truly unique experience that will give them a competitive advantage as they continue their study of biology.”

Cumberland will work closely with Rowan University to develop a four-course biology sequence that will seamlessly transfer directly to Rowan’s biological sciences baccalaureate program.

“I am very excited to get to work with my collaborators from Cumberland County College,” said Dr. Alison Krufka, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences at Rowan University. “Through this program, teams of talented educators and researchers at Cumberland County College and Rowan University can provide students the opportunity to gain valuable research experience and excel in their study of biology.”

CB2R scholars will participate in a summer research clinic at Cumberland County College that continues through their sophomore year. After graduating from Cumberland, the students will be fully integrated into the research laboratory of Rowan University and will experience a complete spectrum of activities associated with carrying out hypothesis-driven research. Additional CB2R opportunities include, attending and presenting at the Rowan STEM Symposium, and at a national student research conference.

Two Inducted into Cumberland County College’s Distinguished Alumni Gallery

Two outstanding Cumberland alums have become the latest inductees to the Cumberland County College Distinguished Alumni Gallery.

Lieutenant Colonel Gwyn M. Parris-Atwell and Stephen P. Testa Sr. join 42 fellow honorees whose portraits are on permanent display in the college’s Frank Guaracini Jr. Fine and Performing Arts Center.

Parris-Atwell is a commissioned officer in the United States Air Force who has achieved Family Nurse Practitioner status, and induction into the Emergency Nurses Association Academy as a Fellow. Her extensive military nursing career began at the U.S. Army’s 348th General Hospital where she served for ten years.

Upon transferring to the U.S. Air Force, Parris-Atwell served with the 514th Air Mobility Wing; and is currently attached to the 514th Aerospace Medicine Squadron located at McGuire Dix Lakehurst Military Base, NJ. Parris-Atwell served stateside during Operation Desert Shield and Storm. Following the September 11 terror attacks, she served at Hickman Air Field (Hawaii) supporting Operation Enduring and Iraqi Freedom. Her veteran status was attained by serving as the interim Craig Joint Theatre Hospital Chief Nurse, and Flight Commander of the Contingency Air Staging Facility in Bagram, Afghanistan. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in nursing.

Testa is a Certified Public Accountant, Registered Municipal Accountant and Public School Accountant, as well as Shareholder/Director of Romano, Hearing, Testa and Knorr CPAs, PA of Vineland. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants, and the Registered Municipal Accountants Association of New Jersey.

His dedication to Cumberland County is demonstrated through volunteerism and involvement with numerous community organizations that include Steered Straight, Inc., Greater Vineland Chamber of Commerce, Millville YMCA, Citizens United, Cumberland Players, Off Broad Street Players, and various youth sports leagues. Testa has been a speaker and presenter for the Community Capacity Building Series program which was previously held on Cumberland’s campus for local non-profit, faith-based and volunteer organizations.

“Our two newest inductees join an exceptional list of distinguished alumni. Their service and contribution to our community and to our country set them apart,” said Cumberland County College President, Dr. Yves Salomon-Fernandez. “Our students can look up to them as role models.”

Cumberland County College’s Distinguished Alumni Gallery was established in 1996 to recognize exemplary alumni who have excelled academically and professionally. Portraits of each inductee hold a prominent place on a wall near the lobby of the Guaracini Center.