4/17

STUDENTS PROPEL MDE’S RECLAIMED MINE PROJECT BY PLANTING 1,700 TREES DURING FROSTBURG EVENT

As the eager high school students bored into the rich, soft soil to plant another tree sapling Wednesday, the Maryland Department of Environment’s reclaimed mine project, located up a steep grade from Sand Spring Run and near Frostburg State University’s football fields, came closer to an end.

A total  of 39 students from Mountain Ridge High School in Frostburg and Allegany County Career and Technical Center in Cumberland, along with volunteers from MDE’s Mining Program and the federal Office of Surface Mining, combined to plant 1,700 trees on Wednesday at the four-acre site. Among the tree species planted were American chestnuts, white pines, black locust, black cherry, redbuds, willow oaks, spicebush and sycamores.

“This is a wonderful project to bring the land back to its natural state,” said Allegany County teacher Carol Garner, admiring the work of her students as they meticulously spaced the trees eight feet apart.

MDE’s Mark Carney said the abandoned coal mine site was active into the 1960s and has cost about $500,000 to remediate. Planting the trees, which kicked off a number of MDE Earth Day events around the state, is among the final steps in the project and will assist greatly in reducing sedimentation into Sand Spring Run, which is in the watershed of the Potomac River. The event was also held in recognition of Arbor Day.

The students received a great workout for nearly three hours and received gift tokens of appreciation for their efforts from MDE.  They also listened to lectures about sustainability, including the history of the American chestnut and how it was once the dominant species of trees in the forest stretching from Maine to Alabama and used traditionally for a number of products, including furniture, cradles and coffins.

“I would like to thank all the students and our volunteers for their hard work and getting so much of the tree planting done,” Carney said. “They will be able to admire the work they did for many years after this restoration is completed.”    

The mission of MDE's Mining Program is to protect the public and the environment from the potential impacts of active mining and to promote the restoration and enhancement of active and abandoned mine land and water resources. The Mining Program's Abandoned Mine Lands Division performs reclamation of abandoned (pre-1977 mining law) coal mines, land and remediation of acid mine drainage from coal mines in Allegany and Garrett counties.

Rally Dog Obedience Training to be offered in Accident

 Garrett College’s Continuing Education and Workforce Development Division will be offering a rally obedience course at the Career and Technology Training Center in Accident on Tuesdays, April 28 to June 2, with two timeslots available: 6:30 to 7:15 p.m. or 7:30 to 8:15 p.m.

Looking for a fun team activity for you and your dog? Try out our newly offered Rally Obedience class. Unlike the traditional obedience that is formal and regimental, Rally allows you to interact with your dog during the exercise. Rally permits one to talk to your dog, give multiple commands and allows two attempts for each exercise. Rally is a great alternative to the intense training necessary to compete in regular obedience and was created with fun in mind. 

Even if you have no desire to ever compete, Rally is fun, builds teamwork, and strengthens the relationship with your dog. This class will cover how to understand the signs for Novice exercises and how to perform each exercise with you four legged partner. Dogs must be six months old. Please note, dogs do not attend the first class on April 28, only handlers.

The course is being taught by local resident, Barbara Glover. From a very early age, Glover has always had a passion for working with dogs, not just having pets, but for what she could teach them to do. She has trained dogs to compete in obedience, agility, rally, dock diving and some field work. Glover’s present teammate, Qwick, earned 9 AKC obedience and agility competition titles in 2013.

For additional information contact Terry Beachy, Northern Outreach Center Coordinator, at 301-895-4700 or terry.beachy@garrettcollege.edu. To register, contact Continuing Education and Workforce Development at 301-387-3069.

Saving the Places We Love:' Presentation by Author Ned Tillman

The Oakland Library will host author and speaker Ned Tillman on Monday, May 18, from 6 – 7:30 p.m. for a presentation and discussion of his latest book Saving the Places We Love: Paths to Environmental Stewardship. Tillman is a speaker on energy and environmental issues, and a Sustainability Advisor. To register for this program, contact Bonnie at 301-334-3996 x117 or bonnie@relib.net.  Limited numbers of his book are available at the library for participants to share, and also copies are available in the library’s catalog system for checkout.

The creative force behind the “Saving the Places We Love” campaign, Tillman is very active on a local and national level in preserving the great outdoors and inspiring others to join in the fight. “I want to do whatever I can to give everyone the tools to save the places they love,” he notes. Tillman’s two books – Saving the Places We Love and his earlier one, The Chesapeake Watershed – are full of ideas and examples of what it takes to accomplish these goals. More information about the “Saving the Places We Love” campaign is available at http://savingtheplaces.com.

In his latest book, Tillman addresses the major environmental challenges of our time in a compelling fashion. The book description on Amazon notes that “readers follow Tillman to some of the country’s most beautiful places, learn what threatens them, and discover what each of us can do about it. We all know the threats—climate change, fossil fuels, fracking, chemicals, stormwater runoff, ocean dumping, industrial agriculture, and waste disposal—but do we know how much we can correct if we start, literally, in our own back yards? Designed to meet the needs of the Common Core curriculum, Saving the Places We Love combines history and science with lively first-person anecdotes to engage the reader in some of the 21st century’s big ideas. Tillman encourages readers to evaluate the evidence and choose their own paths to preserving the country’s natural treasures.”

A listing of events and services at the Ruth Enlow Library is available on the website at www.relib.net. Follow the library on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RuthEnlowLibrary.

GC to offer American History in Oakland

 The Continuing Education and Workforce Development division of Garrett College announces the second of a series of classes exploring our nation’s history through an in-depth study of significant historical figures. American History: the Age of Andrew Jackson will be held at the Southern Outreach Center in Oakland on Monday evenings, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. beginning on April 27 and ending on May 18. 

The class will examine the period following the American Revolution, concluding with a discussion of the issues and events that would ultimately cause the nation to break apart.  Topics will focus on such prominent figures as Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay, and will include the topics of westward expansion, Indian removal, the Mexican War, and the several compromises the ultimately failed in the attempt to keep the country united 

The course will be instructed by Dick Carroll, who holds a M.S. in U.S. History from George Mason University. He worked for the U.S. Government in the Intelligence Field for 42 years and then for eight years as a history instructor at Northern VA Community College.

For additional information or to register, persons may contact Continuing Education and Workforce Development at 301-387-3069.

4/13

2 for 1 Garrett County Dining Promotion

The Garrett County Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a 2 for 1 restaurant promotion at area restaurants Sunday, April 26 – Thursday, April 30 & Sunday, May 3  – Thursday, May 7, 2015. Participating restaurants include Ace’s Run Restaurant & Pub, Brenda’s Pizzeria, Ledo Pizza, Pasta & Pub, Mountain State Brewing Company, Pine Lodge Steakhouse, Smiley’s Grill & Fun Zone, Sorellee’s and Telli’s Deli.

Offers range from 2 for 1 sandwiches, pizza, wine, entrees, calzones, strombolis, subs, coffee and dinner menus.

“This promotion is a great opportunity for area businesses to showcase their menus, while allowing area residents to enjoy specially priced dining specials,” said Nicole Christian, President/CEO of the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce.

Tax, gratuity, beverages & alcohol are excluded from all restaurant offers, unless otherwise specified by the restaurant. Specific hours may apply. Specific menu items and detailed offer information for each restaurant is available at http://www.visitdeepcreek.com/pages/Spring2015DiningPromotion.

For more information about the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce, please call 301.387.4386 or head to www.visitdeepcreek.com.

GILL Members Select Spring Classes for April

 The Garrett Institute for Lifelong Learning (GILL) group, operating under Garrett College Continuing Education and Workforce Development, has released their spring class schedule for the month of April. GILL learning experiences are developed by the organization’s members based on group consensus. The sessions are coordinated by volunteers who select presenters for each topic identified. The programming committee has developed a diverse group of classes offered to members this spring.

‘Reading the Woods’ will be presented by Caroline Blizzard, Park Ranger and Director at the Discovery Center, on Tuesday, April 21 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. This class will meet at the Discovery Center at Deep Creek Lake State Park. What better way to start off the spring season than to have a presentation discussing the many different hiking opportunities offered within the state parks in Garrett County? Caroline Blizzard will lead the group on an easy hike within Deep Creek Lake State Park and point out the many signs of spring along the way. Participants are encouraged to wear comfortable clothes, walking shoes or hiking boots, and to bring a camera or binoculars to capture the beauty of nature.

Gary Blackden will present ‘Bowling 2.0’, a series of four classes that are scheduled for April 21 and 28, and May 5 and 12. Class will be held at The Alley in Oakland from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Participants will get a weekly video skill lesson and then be able to practice what they have learned under the watchful eye of The Alley owner. Members are welcome to stay on and bowl additional games for $2 each game. Shoes are included. Join fellow GILL members for exercise and fun at the newly renovated Oakland lanes.

‘Investing Basics: The Options’ will be presented by Bob McClosky, on Tuesday, April 22 from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Southern Outreach Center (Oakland Community Center) in Oakland. This interactive presentation will clarify the differences among stocks, bonds, and mutual funds and talk about what you need to know to decide what investment strategy is right for you.

‘Quilting for Beginners’ will be presented by Sue O’Neal, President of the Heritage Quilters Society, on Tuesday, April 28 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Southern Outreach Center in Oakland. Quilts are so many things – a warm blanket, a work of art, an outlet for creativity, an expression of love. They may look hard to create but do not have to be difficult to make. Come learn the basics of quilt making. Join the discussion about fabric selection, tools needed, sewing machines, the process of piecing and quilting, and look at examples of various styles. Participants will receive hands-outs with a list of essentials and examples from the demonstrations.

‘Tree Top Flyers – The Basics of Flight’ is scheduled for Wednesday, April 29 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and will be presented by Jack Rickman, Rick Kutchman and Sarah Myers. This class will take place at the Southern Outreach Center in Oakland. Witness the marvels of flight while learning about model airplanes, helicopters, and drones from local flying experts. A flight simulator will be used to demonstrate basic flight maneuvers. After some class time, we will head to the gymnasium inside the Southern Outreach Center for a flying demonstration (outside weather permitting).

On Thursday, April 30 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., Krista McKenzie, will present ‘Information Literacy: Finding Quality Information through Libraries and Internet Searches’ on the McHenry campus of Garrett College. With the ever increasing use of the web, we have information available to us through our home computers, tablets, and smart phones. But are you using the most reliable websites or just sorting through junk? Krista McKenzie, Instructional Librarian, will show participants the many resources available through libraries and how to find the best information on the web.

More information on Garrett Institute for Lifelong Learning is available by contacting Sue Fowler at susan.fowler@garrettcollege.edu or www.garrettcollege.edu/GILL. To register for spring courses, persons may contact Continuing Education Workforce and Development at 301-387-3069.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Garrett College Open House Dates Set

Garrett College will be hosting two open house programs in April for prospective students.  The first event will be held on Friday, April 17, and the second on Saturday, April 25.  Both open houses will begin at 10 a.m. on the McHenry campus. The programs are free and open to the public, but registration is encouraged.

“Anyone interested in attending Garrett College and finding out more about our programs of study are urged to attend one of these events,” said Chrisi Mason, Coordinator of Admissions at Garrett College. Parents also are encouraged to attend.

Each open house event includes a tour of campus, including residence halls and recreational facilities. Those who attend will have an opportunity to meet current Garrett College students and find out why they excel. Prospective students also will learn about unique programs of study, as well as scholarships and other financial aid. Staff members from admissions, financial aid, residence life, athletics, and student support services will be available to share information during the day.

For more information about these upcoming events, persons may call the Garrett College Office of Admissions at 301-387-3044 or toll-free 866-554-2773 or register online at http://www.garrettcollege.edu/open-house.

Landscaping with Native Plants course to be offered at GC’s CTTC in Accident

Garrett College in coordination with the University of Maryland Extension is sponsoring a one-session course entitled Landscaping with Native Plants at the Career and Technology Training Center in Accident, MD. Class will be held on Tuesday, April 21, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. 

Have you been hearing the talk about native plants and wondered what that really means?  Come to this class and we will explore some of the great native plants for Garrett County and talk about some ways to incorporate them into your landscape.  Learn about the benefits of using Native Plants in the landscape and some reasons why they are so beneficial to our ecosystems.   

The course is being instructed by Ashley Bodkins who received her B.S. degree in Agronomy from WVU and an A.A. degree in Horticulture from Potomac State College.  Ashley works for the University of Maryland Extension where she answers home horticulture questions and coordinates the Maryland Master Gardener Program for Garrett County.  The University of Maryland Extension programs are open to any person and will not discriminate against anyone because of race, age, sex, color, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry, national origin, marital status, genetic information, political affiliation, and gender identity or expression. Anyone with a disability that requires special assistance for participation in the program should contact the extension office at 301-334-6960.

For more information on this course, persons may contact Terry Beachy at 301-895-4700 or terry.beachy@garrettcollege.edu .  Anyone interested in registering for this course, may contact Continuing Education and Workforce Development division at 301-387-3069.

 Ranger Caroline Blizzard Receives Edmund Price Award

The Maryland Park Service (MPS) presented the Edmund Prince Award to Ranger Caroline Blizzard of Deep Creek Lake State Park. The award is the highest honor given to a park ranger who personifies the culture, heritage and proud tradition of the MPS.

“Ranger Blizzard is truly an inspiration – to our agency, our state, and its citizens and visitors,” said Nita Settina, superintendent of the Maryland Park Service. “We’re very proud of her accomplishments and grateful for her many years of exemplary service connecting children and families to nature.

Blizzard works as a lead ranger and oversees the management of the Discovery Center, a popular nature and cultural interpretive center within the state park. Here, she developed one of the first “Friends Groups” to support the park, and engages the local community in many outdoor and environmental education programs. She is a leading force in the development of new technologies, such as social media and teaching students in virtual classrooms.

Also working for the conservation of the Monarch butterfly, Blizzard is an active participant with the national effort, Monarch Watch. Through the program, she led two different citizen groups to the butterfly’s roosting sites in Mexico, and later developed a butterfly education and tagging program for children at the Discovery Center, which is still offered today.

Blizzard began her career with the Maryland Park Service in 1989 as a seasonal ranger at Rocky Gap State Park. She eventually became a law enforcement and interpretive ranger at Gunpowder Falls State Park where she helped develop the Northern Central Rail Road Rails to Trails project.

In 2002, Blizzard voluntarily resigned her law enforcement commission and became a lead ranger at Deep Creek Lake State Park.

In 2012, the University of Maryland presented Blizzard with the Richard A. Johnson award for Environmental Education, given to individuals who contribute to environmental education throughout their lifetime and careers.


MARK YOUR CALENDARS… Old Time Jams are coming soon!


New Germany State Park is proud to announce the return of good old-fashioned toe-tappin’ fun, with the sixth season of Old Time Jams set to begin in May.  Jams are scheduled to take place at the New Germany Lake House on the following SATURDAYS in 2015:

  • May 2 & 16

  • June 6 & 20

  • July 18

  • August 1 & 15

  • September 5 

These informal gatherings provide an opportunity for musicians and listeners of all ages to share and enjoy traditional “old-timey” Appalachian music.  The Jams will be held at the New Germany Lake House, from 6:30 – 9:30 p.m., with no charge for admission.

Food, refreshments, and gifts will be available for purchase at the Lake House.  For more information, please call the Ranger Station at 301-895-5453.

4/1

SPRING BLIZZARD HITS GARRETT COUNTY'S GALLERY SHOP

Garrett County Arts Council is displaying the newest Backroom Gallery show at The Gallery Shop, 206 E. Alder Street, Oakland.  Spring Blizzard features the work of four members of the Blizzard family.  The exhibit is on display now through May 1.

As winter makes an exit and spring starts to emerge, the Spring Blizzard show brings a fresh and bright collection of artwork into the gallery.  Nature photography by the father and daughter duo of Neal and Caroline Blizzard showcases spring flowers and budding trees.  Mother Karin utilizes a pressed flower technique and those framed designs pair nicely with the photos of her husband and daughter.  Karina Stonesifer rounds out the exhibit with her natural gemstone delicate jewelry designs.  Karina's work incorporates amethyst, peridot, turquoise, sterling silver, and more to complement the colors in the two-dimensional work of her sister and parents.

The talented local artists will be honored at a reception held at The Gallery Shop on Saturday, April 4 from 5-7 pm.  The public is invited to attend, meet the Blizzard family, and enjoy light refreshments with friends and members of the Arts Council.

The Spring Blizzard exhibit is open for viewing and work available for sale during normal Gallery Shop hours, Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.  For more information, call 301-334-6580.

Matthew Dodd to Perform at Local Libraries During National Library Week

The Ruth Enlow Library will host performer Matthew Dodd during National Library Week in April, with entertaining and educational music shows scheduled at all library locations. Dressed in period clothing, Dodd takes listeners back in time to fascinating periods of American history through his songs and stories. Performances are free and open to the public. All shows except for the evening adult one at the Oakland Library are geared towards children. The schedule of programs for the week of April 13 follows:

  • Friendsville Library/Town Hall: Songs and Stories of the Pioneers, Monday, April 13, 9:20 – 10:20 a.m. and 10:35 – 11:45 a.m. Contact Michele at 301-746-5663 or michele@relib.net for more information.

  • Oakland Library: Songs and Stories Around the Campfire, Monday, April 13, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. for families and children; Songs and Stories of the Pioneers, Monday, April 13, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. for adults. Contact Julie at 301-334-3996, ext.104 or julie@relib.net.

  • Kitzmiller Library: Songs and Stories Around the Campfire, Tuesday, April 14, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. Contact Diane at 301-453-3368 or diane@relib.net for more information.

  • Accident Library: Songs and Stories of the Old West, Tuesday, April 14, 4 – 5 p.m. Contact Crystal at 301-746-8792 or crystal@relib.net for more information.

  • Grantsville Library: Songs and Stories of the Pioneers, Wednesday, April 15, 11 a.m. – Noon. Contact Hannah at 301-895-5298 or hannah@relib.net for more information.

“The Ruth Enlow Library is pleased to offer this program during National Library Week, which is a time to highlight the changing role of libraries, librarians, and library workers,” says Director Cathy Ashby. “Our libraries today are more than warehouses for books. Instead, libraries and librarians are change agents within our communities – transforming lives through innovative educational resources and forward-thinking programming. We are a place of unlimited possibilities and strive to provide our patrons with resources that help them to accomplish their goals and dreams.”

Support for the Matthew Dodd performances is provided by the Western Maryland Regional Library, the regional resource center for the public libraries of Allegany, Garrett, and Washington Counties.

For a listing of library services and events, check the website at www.relib.net and follow the library on Facebook.

2015 GC Commissioner’s Spring Clean Up Program

The Garrett County Commissioners are once again sponsoring the Annual Spring Clean Up Program. The Mayors located in each of the eight municipalities, community organizations and governmental agencies will be invited to participate in the Spring Clean Up Program, free-of-charge.  (Note:  Community organizations and governmental agencies requests to be approved on a case-by-case basis.)

By participating in this program, residents are given the opportunity to dispose of large items or materials not accepted in the regular trash pick ups. (i.e., white goods, small amounts of construction, couches, etc.)

In 2014, approximately 36.65 tons of municipal trash was collected from seven municipalities taking advantage of the Annual Spring Clean Up Program (Accident, Deer Park, Friendsville, Kitzmiller, Loch Lynn, Mt. Lake Park and Oakland).  Additionally, a total of 74 passenger tires with an approximate weight of 2,812 pounds or 1.41 tons was also brought into the landfill for recycling by community organizations and agencies.   

As indicated in the past, all white goods and metal should be separated and delivered directly to a scrap yard facility by each municipality.  By delivering the materials directly, precious resources are saved and municipalities are given the opportunity to recycle and get paid for the materials.

Participating in the free cleanup program is a wonderful opportunity for residents, community organizations and governmental agencies.  Invitations have already been sent to each municipality and the Mayors in each town will be scheduling their clean ups with our office. Residents should check the local newspapers for dates/times their town has chosen for participating in this Spring Clean Up program.  Please contact the town halls directly for information on scheduling dates.

Please contact the Garrett County Department of Solid Waste & Recycling for more information on the Free Recycling Programs in the county at 301.387.0322 or www.garrettcounty.org/solid-waste-recycling

3/27

Director of Economic Development Hired

County Administrator Monty Pagenhardt has announced that the Board of Garrett County Commissioners has appointed Alexander McCoy as Director of the Department of Economic Development. Mr. McCoy was previously Vice President of Economic Development at the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce in Palatka, Florida and Executive Director of Worth County, Georgia Economic Development Authority. Alex earned both his B.B.A. and M.B.A. from Mercer University in Macon, Georgia and is a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) having received this designation from the International Economic Development Council.

Board of County Commissioners Chairman Paul Edwards stated that “Alex comes to us with a fantastic resume and experience in rural county economic development. He’s an engaging guy who will fit in here very well and be an excellent asset to us for years to come. We are excited for him to get started.”

“I, along with my family, am very excited by this opportunity” said Mr. McCoy. “Garrett County has been very lucky to have many strong leaders, both past and present, who have worked diligently to create a strong foundation to build from. I'm looking forward to the challenges ahead”.
Mr. McCoy will begin his employment with the County on April 6.

GC to Present Administrative Professionals Day Conference at Wisp Resort

 Garrett College, in collaboration with Jeannette Rudy-Fitzwater of JR Fitzwater & Associates and Janet Woods of Massage at the Lake Day Spa, present a day of personal and professional enrichment on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at the Yurt Village at Wisp Resort in McHenry.

The agenda for the day is as follows:

8:30-9 a.m. – Registration/Morning Refreshments

9 a.m. -12:30 p.m.- “Building Greater Self-Awareness to Maximize Your Strengths” – Jeannette Rudy-Fitzwater

12:30-1:30pm – Lunch and Networking

1:30-3 p.m. – “De-Stress Your Work Environment” – Janet Woods

Jeannette Rudy-Fitzwater will present, “Building Greater Self-Awareness to Maximize Your Strengths.” She holds a bachelor of business administration degree, has graduated from several professional banking schools, and has earned the unique designation of Registered Corporate Coach (RCC). In addition, she is an alumnus of Leadership Maryland. Her course is designed to provide a framework that participants can use to examine some of the important ways in which people are unique. The program explores the different filters that people use to interpret others’ behaviors and helps participants use feedback to build a concrete action plan for stronger, more productive relationships.

“De-Stress Your Work Environment” will be presented by Janet Woods, owner and lead therapist of Massage on the Lake Day Spa in Oakland. She has owned and operated her business since 2005 and is a Nationally Certified and State of Maryland licensed massage therapist and practitioner. In her session, participants will learn how to relax and rejuvenate with group activities and massage demonstrations to take back to the office to alleviate those tension symptoms. Each participant will receive a gift of pure body oils and will have the opportunity to win a $100 value gift certificate for spa services at Massage at the Lake Day Spa, compliments of Garrett College and Massage at the Lake.

“We are excited to be able to present an event of this caliber to our area’s Administrative Professionals,” said Connie Meyers, Director of Professional Development and Contract Training at Garrett College. “This is just one way we can show our Administrative Professionals that we appreciate them and value their contributions.”

The deadline to register for the event is Wednesday, April 15, 2015. For more information, including cost, and to register, contact Connie Meyers, at 301-387-3084 or connie.meyers@garrettcollege.edu.

3/18

Garrett County Chamber Offers Spring 3-2-1 Lodging & Activity Promotion

  Just in time for spring visitors traveling to Garrett County and the Deep Creek Lake, Maryland area, the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce is offering a 3-2-1 Lodging & Activity Promotion on their website, www.visitdeepcreek.com. The promotion runs from March 16, 2015 – May 14, 2015, non-holidays. The promotion is for 3 nights at the price of 2 plus discounted activities.

Seven lodging companies – ranging from rental home properties and a lakefront hotel to a B&B and log-cabin-style hotel suites – are participating in the promotion. And activity offers include discounted shopping, dining and attraction and arcade use.

“The 3-2-1 Promotion is a terrific way to save on your spring trip to the Deep Creek Lake area and Garrett County,” said Sarah Duck, Director of Tourism & Marketing for the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce. “With discounts on both lodging and area activities, visitors will be sure to find a discount offer to suit their vacation.”

The 3-2-1 Promotion includes lodging offers from Cabin on Farm View, Deep Creek Lodging Company, Long & Foster Resort Rentals, Railey Mountain Lake Vacations, Ski Cove #3, Taylor-Made Deep Creek Vacations and Wisp Resort Hotel and Conference Center and activity offers from FireFly Farms Creamery & Market, Pine Lodge Steakhouse and Smiley’s Grill and Fun Zone. 

Garrett County, Maryland’s westernmost county, is less than a three-hour drive from the metropolitan areas of Washington DC and Baltimore, two hours from Pittsburgh, and a 45 minute drive from Morgantown, WV and Cumberland, MD. Garrett County is home to Maryland’s largest freshwater lake, Deep Creek Lake, Wisp Resort, the state’s only ski resort, and the Adventure Sports Center International, one of only two recirculating whitewater courses in the western hemisphere.

To view all of the 3-2-1 offers or more information about Garrett County, please stop by www.visitdeepcreek.com or call 888.387.5237.

Garrett Receives Keep America Beautiful Cigarette Litter Prevention Program Grant

 Keep America Beautiful's Cigarette Litter Prevention Program (CLPP) today announced that Garrett County Solid Waste & Recycling  is a recipient of a $2,500 grant as one of 73 organizations receiving grants for the expanded 2015 CLPP Grants Program.

Keep America Beautiful (KAB) affiliates, local governments, business improvement districts, downtown associations, parks and recreation areas, and other organizations dedicated to eradicating litter and beautifying communities are receiving grants. Since the establishment of the CLPP, communities in 49 states and the District of Columbia have implemented the program to reduce cigarette litter.

On Earth Day, April 22, 2015,  the official Cigarette Litter Prevention & Reduction Program will commence in Garrett County.  Our office will be working closely with local organizations and committees to kick-off a CLPP.   Places like the State Parks, College, store parking lots, beaches, athletic centers, marinas, fairgrounds and streets/roads/highways will be targeted for a major cigarette litter clean-up.

"We would like to thank our staff for taking on this very worthwhile project.  Cleaning up litter from our public places makes for a healthier community and beautifies the environment for our residents and guests," as commented by Chairman Paul Edwards, Garrett County Commissioners.


For the second straight year, KAB reported an average 48 percent reduction in cigarette litter in communities implementing KAB's CLPP.  One-hundred seventeen communities that launched programs in 2013 achieved an additional 34 percent reduction when measured again in 2014.

In 2014, the CLPP's 12th year, there were 129 grant-supported implementations across the country in a variety of settings including downtowns, roadways, beaches, parks, marinas, colleges/universities, tourist locations, and at special event locations.

Over the past 10 years, the CLPP has consistently cut cigarette butt litter by approximately half based on local measurements taken in the first four months to six months after program implementation.  Survey results also demonstrated that as communities continue to monitor the program those reductions are sustained or even increased over time.

"Keep America Beautiful is keenly aware that to make communities socially connected, environmentally healthy and economically sound, it is incumbent upon us to reduce the blight of cigarette litter," said Jennifer Jehn, president and CEO of Keep America Beautiful. "It's gratifying to see sustained results from the Cigarette Litter Prevention Program where access to ash receptacles is at work in tandem with the reinforcement of public education and awareness."

Tobacco products, consisting mainly of cigarette butts, are the most littered item in America, representing nearly 38 percent of all items littered, according to "Litter in America," KAB's landmark study of litter and littering behavior.

Research has shown that even self-reported "non-litterers" often don't consider tossing cigarette butts on the ground to be "littering."  Keep America Beautiful has found that cigarette butt litter occurs most often at transition points-areas where a person must stop smoking before proceeding into another area.  These include bus stops, entrances to stores and public buildings, and the sidewalk areas outside of bars and restaurants, among others.

To address cigarette butt litter, KAB's CLPP advocates that communities integrate four proven approaches<http://preventcigarettelitter.org/what_you_can_do/resources.html>:


 *   Encourage enforcement of litter laws, including cigarette litter;
 *   Raise awareness about the issue using public service messages;
 *   Place ash receptacles at transition points such as entrances to public buildings; and
 *   Distribute pocket or portable ashtrays to adult smokers.

The "Guide to Cigarette Litter Prevention" provides information about starting and maintaining a Cigarette Litter Prevention Program in your community, and can be found online at PreventCigaretteLitter.org<http://preventcigarettelitter.org/>.  You can also view the new PSA<http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYqJ1hjKWU0&feature=c4-overview&list=UUwXz-YHuMvTixJAC-Vr9EIg> on KAB's YouTube channel.

The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program is supported by funding from Philip Morris USA, an Altria company; RAI Services Company; and the Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company.

DR. VERSTEEGEN TO SPEAK AT HEALTH FAIR

Dr. Rosemary J. Versteegen will be among the guest speakers at the Garrett County Health Fair, scheduled for Saturday, April 11, at the Community Aquatic & Recreation Center (CARC) at Garrett College in McHenry.

Dr. Versteegen received her B.Sc and Ph.D. degrees in Biochemistry from Glasgow University in Scotland. She held Postdoctoral scholarships at Cambridge University, England and the National Institutes of Health in Washington, DC working in areas of disease research. Following several years in NIH sponsored cancer research programs, she joined Life Technologies as a major supplier of consumables for Life Science Research. In her almost 20 years there, she was Vice President of New Business Development and Vice President of Strategic Planning. During this time, she played an important role in obtaining FDA approval for the first DNA based diagnostic test, which was also the first diagnostic test for Human Papillomavirus (HPV), a sexually transmitted infection.  In 2000, Dr. Versteegen became a founding partner of the Lifia Group, a consulting organization focused on helping life science and biotechnology companies grow through clearly enunciated, actionable strategic plans. Since its inception in 2006, Dr. Versteegen has been the CEO of the International Serum Industry Association, a global life science not-for-profit association. Her talk at the Garrett County Health Fair will touch on HPV.

She and her husband Peter spent almost every weekend in Garrett County from 1990 till 2000, when they became full time county residents.

The Health Fair will be open from 8:30 am until 1:00 pm. Organizers expect more than 60 information booths along with a variety of free health screenings. Screenings at this time include a foot orthotic scanning and postural screening offered by Williams Chiropractic Clinic; a bone density heel screening and cholesterol and A1C screening offered  by The Wellness Department of GCMH; a domestic violence screening by the Dove Center; and a balance screening offered by Allegany Hearing and Balance.

As a new addition this year, the Kids Fun Festival will join the Health Fair. For booth applications or additional information please call 301-533-4178. For up-to-date information like Garrett County Health Fair on Facebook

CARDIAC & PULMONARY REHAB TO BE DISCUSSION TOPIC AT HEALTH FAIR

Jessica Meyers, RN, clinical supervisor and head of day to day operations in the new Cardiac & Pulmonary Rehabilitation Center at Garrett County Memorial Hospital will be among the guest speakers at the Health Fair slated for Saturday, April 11 in McHenry.  She will speak about the impact of rehabilitation programs on patient recovery and disease management; the impact on quality of life and overall benefits of the program; and the chronic disease management of pulmonary disease in the community. She will also cover primary and secondary prevention strategies to decrease the need for hospitalization.

Meyers has been with the Center since its opening last summer following her tenure with the Hospital’s operative services and post-anesthesia care unit.  She began her nursing career by working in cardiac care and stroke care prior to joining Garrett County Memorial Hospital. Meyers received her Bachelor of Science in Dietetics from Marshall University and has extensive experience in nutritional counseling.  She is a member of the Maryland Association of Cardiovascular/Pulmonary Rehabilitation Professionals. Currently Ms. Meyers is working on a national certification for the program and is pursuing her Masters Degree for Nurse Practitioner.

The Health Fair will be held at the CARC (Community Aquatic & Recreation Complex) at Garrett College and will be open from 8:30 am until 1:00 pm. The event will include free health screenings and more than 60 information booths. For up-to-date information like the Garrett County Health Fair on Facebook or call 301-533-4178 for additional information.

Greg Latta to Perform at GC Foundation Spring Scholarship Benefit

Greg Latta, mesmerizing singer, songwriter, and award-winning performer, will be performing at the 5th annual spring scholarship benefit, “Garrett Voices in the Mountain Mist” hosted by the Garrett College Foundation. The annual fundraiser will be held on Friday, May 1 at 6 p.m. in the Mountain Mist Tent of Sundown Yurt Village at the Wisp Resort in McHenry. All proceeds from the event will support scholarships for Garrett College students.

Latta is an award-winning performer on the hammered dulcimer, banjo, guitar, Irish bouzouki, cittern, harmonica, recorder, Appalachian dulcimer, and concertina. A hammered dulcimer virtuoso and champion, he is a three time winner of the Mid-Eastern hammered dulcimer championships and has twice been a runner up in the National Hammered Dulcimer Championships held at Winfield, Kansas.

He performs an eclectic mix of carefully chosen Irish, traditional and contemporary folk, Broadway, bluegrass, and original music. His repertoire includes original works, old coal mining songs, whaling songs, contemporary and traditional topical songs, and children’s songs, to name a few. His diverse performances have included a private performance for the Hungarian Presidential Cabinet, and performances at the US Olympic Canoeing and Kayaking Trials, the Rocky Gap Country Bluegrass Festival, the Garrett Lakes Arts Festival, numerous school performances, and a performance with the prestigious modern dance company Dance Alloy of Pittsburgh celebrating the centennial of Frostburg State University.

Latta is a finger style guitar player who has played guitar nearly his entire life. He plays both 6 and 12 string guitars, and open tunings on the 12 string guitar are a particular specialty of his. He is also an award winning banjo player, having won second or third place five years in a row at the banjo competitions held in Friendsville, MD. His banjo style is a combination of traditional bluegrass, old-timey, melodic, and contemporary styles.

Latta is also accredited as a Visiting Performer in the Maryland State Arts Council Artists in Education program. In addition to his stage performances and recordings, he is also host and producer of the popular radio show, “Just Plain Folks”, which can be heard Saturday afternoons on WFWM – 91.9 FM, the Frostburg State University public radio station.

He has released two recordings, “Headed for Home” and “My Favourite Things”. He is currently working on a fourth recording, but his work as a recording engineer and producer often takes time away from his personal work in the studio. Latta is a two time winner of the prestigious Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award in Solo Music Performance. One of only 11 musicians in the state of Maryland to win the award in 2012, he won an even larger award in 2015.

For more information and details on the upcoming spring scholarship fundraiser, “Garrett Voices in the Mountain Mist”, persons may contact the Garrett College Foundation office at 301-387-3131.

PATIENT ADVOCATE AMONG HEALTH FAIR SPEAKERS

Regina Holliday, a patient rights activist and artist will be one of the guest speakers at the Garrett County Health Fair to be held in McHenry on Saturday, April 11. Holliday’s presentation is titled The Writing on the Wall. Through her presentation, Holliday will explain the power of the patient and caregiver to help shape health policy both in personal care and on the national stage. Her aim is to inspire those who attend and remind them that everyone has a voice no matter how humble their origin or their education. Holliday is the Founder of the Walking Gallery and authored The Walking Wall: 73 Cents to the Walking Gallery.

The Health Fair will be held at the CARC (Community Aquatic & Recreation Center) at Garrett College in McHenry and will be open from 8:30 am until 1:00 pm.  Organizers expect over 60 information booths along with a variety of free health screenings.  Screenings scheduled at this time include a foot orthotic scanning and postural screening offered by the Williams Chiropractic Clinic; a bone density heel screening and cholesterol and A1C screening offered by the Wellness Department of Garrett County Memorial Hospital.

As a new addition this year, the Kids Fun Festival will join the annual Health Fair making this truly an event for all ages. For booth applications or additional information please call 301-533-4178.

Gardening Classes to Begin at Ruth Enlow Libraries

The Ruth Enlow Library will host a series of gardening classes at three locations this year – Accident, Grantsville, and Oakland libraries – beginning in March. All classes are presented by the Garrett County Master Gardeners from University of Maryland Extension and are free and open to the public. Participants are asked to register as follows. For Accident classes, contact Crystal at 301-746-8792 or crystal@relib.net; for Grantsville classes, contact Kim at 301-895-5298 or kim@relib.net; for Oakland classes, contact Bonnie at 301-334-3996, x117 or bonnie@relib.net.

A variety of gardening topics are planned for this season, including herbs for beginners, native plants, perennial gardening, bird and butterfly gardening, and more, from March through October. The first class – Hot Beds, Season Extension – is scheduled for March 19, from 2 – 3 p.m., at the Oakland Library. Accident’s first class – Budget Friendly Gardening – is taking place on March 26 from 2 – 3 p.m. Grantsville’s classes will begin on April 9 from 2 – 3 p.m. with Hot Beds, Season Extension.

A complete list of class topics with locations and times is available on the library’s website at www.relib.net, at local library branches, and at the University of Maryland Extension office in Oakland.

“This schedule of classes offers the community an opportunity to pick and choose from a variety of gardening topics, locations, and times to suit individual preferences,” notes Bonnie Winters, public relations specialist for the library. “We are pleased to partner with the University of Maryland Extension to bring this kind of programming to our area.”

The University of Maryland Extension programs are open to any person and will not discriminate against anyone because of race, age, sex, color, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry, national origin, marital status, genetic information, political affiliation, and gender identity or expression.

Follow the library on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RuthEnlowLibrary.

Win a Home to Help Build a Home for Adoptable Animals

HART for Animals is raising funds to raise the roof of the HART Adoption Wing by raffling a house and 18 other cash prizes as part of their “Forever Home” fundraiser. In July 2014, HART was awarded a $250,000 grant by the Appalachian Regional Commission, with matching funds to be provided jointly by Garrett County and private donations.  The raffle is expected to raise $125,000 towards the construction, from the sale of the 4,000 tickets for a grand prize of a single-family Cape Cod home in Thurmont, Maryland, or 18 cash prizes including the first prize of $5,000. 

Many Garrett County residents helped celebrate the opening of the first phase of the HART Animal Center in 2014. Through a combination of private donations, grants, and a loan from the USDA -Rural Development’s Community Facility Program, the Bredel Veterinary Clinic opened on February 25, 2014. The Bed ‘n Bark Inn pet hotel, MUTTWorks Grooming Salon and the HART Shoppe retail store opened in March of the same year. These services will enable HART for Animals to support its mission of improving the lives of homeless animals by building an animal adoption center where adoptable animals will never have to be euthanized. The revenues generated by these services, along with grants and fundraising efforts, such as the current “Forever Home” house raffle, will support and sustain the operations of the final phase: the HART Adoption Shelter Wing, to be completed this year.

Founded in 2003, HART for Animals has been rescuing animals from the county’s twelve-kennel shelter and transporting them to larger adoption facilities in locations throughout the region. Prior to the organization’s founding, the local shelter was forced to euthanize hundreds of animals each year due to a low adoption rate and shelter capacity.  To date, HART has rescued and transported more than 6,500 animals.  In 2009, HART opened a small low-cost spay/neuter clinic for low-income households to help reduce the number of unwanted puppies and kittens and educate pet owners on the value of spaying and neutering.  Since that time, HART has performed 6,000 spay/neuter surgeries, reducing the intake to the county shelter by 18%. 

“A small group of fiercely committed people were determined to change the lives of homeless cats and dogs,” says Mercedes Pellet, HART’s development director. “So we rolled up our sleeves and knowing that without challenge, there is no change, began a capital fundraising campaign to build, from the ground up, a dedicated, state-of-the-art facility.  We knew this task seemed to many people like a monumental project for such a low-populated area, but through perseverance and sheer willpower, our dream became a reality,” she adds.  It is with the same determination that HART is now engaged in raffling the house to raise the $125,000 for the Adoption Wing.

The house, valued at $236,000, is located one block from Mount Saint Mary’s College, in Thurmont, Maryland. Convenient to Hagerstown, Emmitsburg and Frederick, this newly remodeled 1,419 square foot home on one-quarter acre features a detachable garage, secluded, fenced-in backyard, three bedrooms, one full bath and one half-bath and walk-out basement.

“The beauty of this home is the options when you do win,” says HART’s executive director, Paula Yudelevit. “You can keep this beautifully-appointed home, sell it or rent it. Being one-block from Mount Saint Mary’s College makes selling or renting a profitable option,” she concludes. 

With a maximum number of 4,000 tickets for sale, the odds of winning the “Forever Home” are 1 in 4,000. The odds of winning one of the 18 cash prizes are 1 in 210. Tickets are $100 each.

Information on the house, the cash prizes and full rules may be found on the raffle website, www.harthomeraffle.org. Tickets may be purchased on the website or at the HART Animal Center, located at 1265 Bumble Bee Rd., Accident, MD 21520.  Information may also be obtained by calling 301.387.7729.

HART for Animals, Inc. is a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) corporation. Donations to HART are tax-deductible. For additional information on HART or any of its charitable programs, visit the HART web site at www.hartforanimals.org

GCMH FORMS PARTNERSHIP WITH GENERAL ELECTRIC TO IMPACT CARE DELIVERY

Garrett County Memorial Hospital and General Electric have entered into a contract agreement that will upgrade and replace the critical care monitors for the Intensive Care Unit, Emergency Department, Surgical Suite, Post Anesthesia Care Unit and the Same Day Surgery Unit.  Also included in the critical care equipment package are three new ventilators and 2 new c-arms for Radiologic/Surgical procedures.

“Technology is one of the most important and most rapidly advancing tools in healthcare. I think it’s important that the hospital have the latest technology to offer the community,” explained Mark Boucot, GCMH President & CEO; “Providing high quality healthcare requires having state of the art technology available to the physicians and staff.”

Boucot went on to explain,  “This deal with General Electric provides GCMH with technological infrastructure for the most advanced critical care monitoring available and will carry us into the future with the new construction project.  It will also give doctors remote access to rapidly assist in care.”

Hospital-wide upgrades will provide standardization of equipment so that all departments are on the same platform.  Innovative advancements in technology allow the physicians to better diagnose and treat patients.  It has the potential to save countless lives and improve the overall quality of life.

“We see, firsthand, every day, the impact that improved equipment has in the lives of our patients. It’s everywhere; from our phones, to our laptops, to x-ray machines to defibrillators. Funding of new technology is always a challenge and often requires lengthy and savvy negotiations with medical suppliers to achieve our objectives. We do take a proactive approach to advancing our service lines as with the recent grant funding for telehealth services,” said Boucot.

GCMH was recently awarded a $62,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission to fund telehealth services.  The funding will allow for the purchase of four new telehealth units to improve the community’s access to specialty medical services and consults from larger hospitals. As many community residents simply cannot afford to travel the long distances for specialized treatment, they often go without proper medical care as a result. This will allow patients to receive the same care as patients at a larger facility.

“I think it’s exciting that GCMH is in a growth mode and moving forward at an unprecedented level. These upgrades and advancements are a major investment on behalf of Garret County Memorial Hospital and they signify a real commitment to provide the best possible care to the patients of the Garrett region of Western Maryland. This technology advancement will carry GCMH well into the future. With structural improvements, increased square footage and state of art equipment, we can improve diagnostic capabilities, increase efficiency of services, provide a more comfortable and positive patient experience and continue to ensure excellent care for our patients.  GCMH will have the ability to meet the community’s need for quality healthcare and allow patients to spend less time in the hospital and more time enjoying life,” said Boucot.

“Garrett Memorial is on a road of continuous quality improvement and service excellence. We are constantly looking for new ways to improve the access to care as well as enhance the quality of care available locally,” concluded Boucot.

Scheduled Released for Spring Joan Crawford Lecture Series

Garrett College has announced the Spring 2015 schedule for the Joan Crawford Lecture Series which will be held on the McHenry campus beginning Wednesday, February 25. Created in memory and honor of Joan Crawford, who dedicated her life to serving Garrett College and the community, this sequence of presentations is offered free of charge each year and is open to the public.

Coordinated by Beth Luers, Professor of Humanities at Garrett College, the lectures are scheduled at either 12 noon or at 7 p.m. and last approximately one hour.

The schedule of spring presentations are as follows:

Wednesday, April 8, “From Hitler’s Germany to a New Life in the U.S.” presented by Paul Weiler at 7 p.m. in Room 205 in the Continuing Education building

Tuesday, April 14, “The Poets We Love” presented by Jack DuBose at 7 p.m. in Room 201 in the Continuing Education building

Wednesday, April 22, “Autism: What Doctors Know & What Autistic Children Wish You Knew” presented by Elizabeth Taliaferro at noon in Room 645.

For more information on the Joan Crawford Lecture Series persons may contact Beth Luers at 301-387-3020.

Garrett County Memorial Hospital Receives National Recognition from the American Hospital Association

The American Hospital Association (AHA) recognized Garrett County Memorial Hospital for its efforts in quality of care, patient safety and patient centered care and for its participation in the AHA McKesson Quest for Quality Prize.  The Quest for Quality Prize is recognition for hospitals that pursue excellence in continuous quality improvement and patient safety.  GCMH received the recognition after submitting a description of its quality improvement processes and measurements of success.

In the same week, GCMH was also awarded the Carolyn Boone Lewis “Living the Vision Award” for the hospital’s participation and membership in a state collaborative that is reinventing the payment systems for hospitals in the State of Maryland.  This “new” payment is also known as Total Patient Revenue, or TPR.  The way that the TPR payment system works, is that hospitals assume risk for the health of the community and are paid based on the population served, versus being paid based on the volume of patients.  The TPR Collaborative consists of a total of 10 Hospitals in the State of Maryland, all of which were presented the award for reinventing themselves to meet the new payment system.  Awards were presented by Rich Umbdenstock, President and CEO of the AHA.

“Garrett County Memorial Hospital is the longest standing TPR Hospital in Maryland.  We’ve been paid on this system since the early 1980’s.  This work has led to GCMH having the lowest 30 day readmission rate in the state, which is currently below 6%, versus the state average of 12%,” explained Mark Boucot, GCMH President and CEO.   “The people of Garrett County may not realize it, but this work could essentially become a basis for the rest of the nation when considering the implementation of a population based health reimbursement system.”

Maryland TPR Collaborative formed in 2010 out of 10 hospitals involved in the Maryland Total Patient Revenue Project. The Maryland Total Patient Revenue Project uses a fixed revenue system to encourage hospitals to decrease hospitalizations. The participating hospitals are the sole providers in communities in the western mountain region and coastal parts of the state. The collaborative’s purpose is to reshape the participating hospitals’ approach to health care, learn from each other’s challenges and successes, share best practices and data and improve care as a group, despite demographic diversity.  Tracy Lipscomb, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at GCMH remarked, “I have been honored to work with such a talented group of CEO’s and CFO’s as part of this TPR Collaborative.”

These 10 hospitals focus on providing greater access to primary care, which keeps patients out of the hospital, and improving quality. Some of the successful strategies implemented by TPR Collaborative Maryland hospitals include:

·         Creating partnerships with physicians, pharmacists and community groups;

·         Supporting the primary care physician practices;

·         Creating primary care medical homes;

·         Developing high-risk clinics like GCMH’s Cardiac and Pulmonary Rehab Unit;

·         Partnering with independent urgent care centers and increasing collaboration with

            Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC’s);

·         Expanding and supporting Home Health and community resources;

·         Focusing on appropriateness of admissions;

·         Improving and changing discharge procedures and follow-up; and,

·         Increasing health and wellness activities on a regional basis.

Umbdenstock recognized the TPR Collaborative in Maryland for their efforts to reducing costs, increasing access to primary care and sharing best practices in a way that all hospital can learn from.  An important element of the Carolyn Boone Lewis Living the Vision Award is that a hospital must be recognized as a leader and nominated by others in the health care field.

Participating hospitals in the collaborative are Calvert Memorial Hospital, Carroll Hospital Center, Chester River Hospital Center, Garrett County Memorial Hospital, The McCready Foundation, Meritus Medical Center, Shore Health System, Union Hospital and Western Maryland Health System.

The American Hospital Association is the national advocate for its members, nearly 5,000 hospitals, health systems and other health care organizations, and 43,000 individuals.  For more information visit the website at www.aha.org.

GC Awarded TAACCCT Grant

 Garrett College, as a partner in a consortium with 13 other Maryland community colleges, led by Montgomery College, has been awarded a Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training (TAACCCT) grant for $448,959, over four years. A total of 14 community colleges in Maryland will benefit from the $14,957,899 in funding to support job-driven training programs. The funding is part of the TAACCCT competitive grant program, which is co-administered by the Department of Labor and Department of Education.

Vice President Biden, Secretary Thomas E. Perez, and Secretary Arne Duncan announced the winners of $450 million in job-driven training grants going to nearly 270 community colleges across the country. Maryland is a national center of cybersecurity with over 130,000 IT jobs–49% above the national average–yet many workers find these careers difficult to enter.

The grant will support the Cyber Technology Pathways Across Maryland (CPAM) project which is directed toward significantly increasing the number of pathways leading to employment in cybersecurity or closely related fields, where this is a critical shortage of workers.

The TAACCCT grant will enable Garrett College to expand existing AAS degree programs and offer new training programs. “The new certification programs offered in Continuing Education and Workforce Development will enable students to earn various industry recognized credentials or certifications. The training will be designed to meet the needs of students new to Cyber Technology as well as enhance employability for individuals who have already earned an AAS or BS degree,” says Carol Mowbray Brooks, Director of Workforce Development and Adult Education. “The Health Information Technology training program will expand job opportunities for individuals wishing to enter the Allied Health field or expand their knowledge and employability.”

With support from grant funding, Garrett College will provide a continuum of training (both noncredit and credit) ranging from basic skills through coursework leading to an Associate in Applied Science degree in Cybersecurity. Health Information Technology will be a new certificate program. The college will also upgrade and expand its PearsonVue testing center to facilitate certification testing for CPAM project participants, and work with local business partners to provide job shadowing, internship, and possible employment opportunities.

The grant also provides funding to support curriculum development, student recruitment and advising, and faculty/instructor professional development, acquisition of equipment and supplies, and project management and administration. The grant will also cover costs associated with hiring the temporary (contractual) personnel needed to carry out the CPAM project. These include a program coordinator, a part-time instructor, and a testing center administrator.