Downtown Hyannis Adult Education Center Celebrates New Name

COURTESY OF CAPE COD COMMUNITY COLLEGE: Adult Education Center Director Jhon Valencia speaks during an open house of the downtown Hyannis location. (Photo by Christine Pauk)

COURTESY OF CAPE COD COMMUNITY COLLEGE: Adult Education Center Director Jhon Valencia speaks during an open house of the downtown Hyannis location. (Photo by Christine Pauk)

HYANNIS – Cape Cod Community College’s downtown Hyannis home which has served adults with educational and literacy programs since 1991 has a new name.

An open house was held yesterday for the Adult Education Center on Main Street, which provides free services to individuals 16 or older to improve reading, writing listening, speaking, math, science and social studies skills.

The center also offers English as second language classes.

“It’s crucial for most of these communities,” said Jhon Valencia, the director of the Adult Education Center. “They want to really have a better life and we understand that having a better life requires different things, in this case language is number one.”

Valencia said the goal of the open house was to inform the public about the center and its offerings.

“The idea is to expand the program to make sure that people in the community are receiving the tools they need to get a better job, to get a degree – to move forward with their lives,” he said.

The program has been funded through a consortium made up primarily of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, the Cape & Islands Workforce Investment Board and the college. The center was originally known as the Adult Collaborative of Cape Cod for Education and Support Services.

cape-cod-community-college-adult-education-centerValencia came to the center in January and started talking to people in the community.

“They didn’t even know we were here so I said ‘we need to do something about this,’” Valencia said.

The center now has a waiting list of over 750 people to get into English as a second language classes.

Thirty-two years ago, Valencia came to the United States and took his GED exam in Spanish in New York City. He later received a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Hunter College and then completed masters and PHD work at Tulane University.

“The whole journey is not an easy journey but it is doable,” Valencia said.

Valencia was living in Washington State when he took this job and moved to Cape Cod.

“For me it was like closing the circle,” he said. “Let me go back to the beginning and if I can inspire a new generation that would be wonderful.”

The location also houses the Center for Corporate and Professional Education which provides training for individuals, businesses and community organizations.

By BRIAN MERCHANT, CapeCOd.com NewsCenter

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