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MMCC employees promote reading with Harry the Heron

Mid Michigan Community College (MMCC) employees celebrated “March Is Reading Month” by reading to local 2nd grade students.

MMCC President Chris Hammond reads to 2nd graders in Farwell

MMCC President Chris Hammond reads to 2nd graders in Farwell

Numerous MMCC employees visited classrooms across the mid-Michigan area to share the College’s original book “Harry the Heron Spreads His Wings,” featuring MMCC’s mascot. Harry the Heron himself was present during the readings to pantomime the book’s events and to offer up hugs and high fives to students when the story was over.

More than 20 local elementary schools, involving nearly 70 2nd grade classes, participated during the month of March. Schools in Clare, Gladwin, Isabella, Gratiot, and Mecosta counties were represented.

The original book came to fruition through the talents and efforts of MMCC staff members who generated a storyline, wrote, and illustrated it. It features a young Harry who dislikes all of the ways that he differs from his classmates until he learns that his differences also make him special.

“Luckily, we didn’t realize just how many hours we would devote to the book until the project was well underway and we were totally invested in finishing it,” stated Jessie Gordon, MMCC’s Director of Marketing and Admissions. “But, the final product is completely worth all of the hard work. And, we’ve had an amazingly positive response from teachers and children across the region.”

Before the end of the school year, MMCC plans to print hardcover copies of the book and donate one to each of the participating school’s libraries. Feedback has been so encouraging that the college will continue the Harry the Heron reading outreach in future years.

MMCC is celebrating its 50th year of providing exceptional, affordable, and open-access post-secondary education to the mid-Michigan region. Over that time, the college’s enrollment, program offerings, and scope have experienced tremendous growth. Regardless, MMCC has remained committed to providing personalized attention to its students and to working in direct partnership with area businesses and its local school districts.

“We’re always looking for ways to connect with our local schools and engage them as community partners,” said Matt Miller, Vice President of Student and Community Relations. “This effort was not only meaningful, but it was a lot of fun for both MMCC and the classrooms we visited.”

To read an online version of “Harry the Heron Spreads His Wings,” visit www.midmich.edu/heronstory.


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