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Success Stories

Hillary Palmer

Hillary completed one year at JCC and transferred to SUNY Potsdam. She later transferred to University of Alaska Anchorage, and earned a degree in Geology. She is currently an employee of US Army Corps of Engineers.


Robert Cooper

After 2 years at JCC (graduated in May 1997), I went on to complete my BS in Biology at Houghton College. Later on, I completed an M.S.T in Adolescent Science Education from SUNY Potsdam. The flexibility of the faculty and administration at JCC allowed me to maximize my time at Jefferson. With my broad background in course work at JCC, I was able to graduate on time from Houghton College with 4 additional minors (Chemistry, Physics, Math, and Psychology).

It was evident that the faculty at JCC took a great deal of interest in the success of their students. Their doors were always open for assistance, advice, or even just to chat. One specific example of the enthusiasm and dedication of my JCC professors was the semester when our Chemistry professor (Prof. Penrose) created a Quantitative Chemistry class at 6:00 in the morning to accommodate the busy schedules of a handful of us that were interested in taking the class.

While at JCC I had the opportunity to work directly in the Biology and Chemistry labs, as well as assist in Chemistry demonstrations for the public. This extensive applied experience transferred directly into a future job as a Scientist for Upstate Biotechnology in Northern New York, focusing on molecular and cell biology.

Later on, my diverse science background from JCC served me again, as I am now a High School Science Teacher at Copenhagen Central, with certifications to teach Chemistry, Biology, and Physics.


Katie Overton

Katie completed two years at JCC and transferred to SUNY-ESF (Environmental Science and Forestry) in Syracuse. She is pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Natural History and Interpretation. During her summer break, Katie worked as an environmental educator and trail guide for Nature Vision in Seattle. She said “My goal is to get people out into nature and give them a fun educational experience, because we only conserve what we love and understand.”


Melissa Sboro

Upon graduating from high school, Melissa began her studies in Animal Science at Delaware Valley College in Pennsylvania. After completing two semesters, she transferred to SUNY Albany for one semester. Still undecided on a career choice, Melissa returned home and enrolled in a variety of classes at JCC to hopefully discover her true interests. After hearing a presentation on allied health careers in her biology class, Melissa decided to pursue a career in radiography. After completing a Math/Science Degree at JCC, Melissa transferred to SUNY Upstate for Medical Imaging.

She said “JCC was a great place for me because they helped me find what I really want to do. I was unsure for a while, but they introduced me to the College of Health Professions at Upstate Medical University and all the programs that they offer. It was the Medical Imaging Sciences that really interested me. The best part of this profession is the patient interaction that you have. I love working with the patients. JCC is a great school to start at, especially if you are still undecided.”


Carrie Cuppernall Guga

My senior year of high school I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I knew that I liked science and math. I looked into pharmacy school and thought that sounded like something that would be of interest to me. My first year of college, I was accepted and attended Albany College of Pharmacy. Although I did like the school, I found myself questioning if that is what I wanted to do. I returned to Jefferson Community College for the next two years to determine what it was I wanted to do. I knew I still wanted to do something with medicine.

I started looking at medical schools and interning with local physicians. It was at this time I heard about physician assistants. I had never heard of them. I researched the career and interned with a local physician assistant and decided that was the career for me. I found out the requirements necessary to get into a program and took the majority of them at JCC.

I graduated from JCC with an associate’s degree in math/science. I then transferred to SUNY Cortland and finished up the requirements for my fourth year of college. I was accepted to the Physician Assistants program at LeMoyne College. I completed the program and have been practicing as a certified registered physician assistant locally for over 5 years now. JCC was a great place for me to get started in my education and would recommend to any student. Not only is it a good transition for high school students into college, but for non traditional students who are changing careers.