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PLATTSBURGH — Clinton Community College will offer a three-course series designed to help people explore transitioning to the human services field from January through May 2021.

The program was born out of a partnership between the college, the Joint Council for Economic Opportunity of Clinton and Franklin Counties, the North Country Workforce Partnership, Behavioral Health Services North and OneWorkSource.

“This combined venture … will be a win-win for Clinton County and the surrounding areas as we look forward to providing an educational opportunity to anyone thinking about entering the human services field,” CCC President Ray DiPasquale said in a statement.

An aging population as well as increased demand for substance use treatment, and mental health and health-related services due to COVID-19 means opportunities to work within the human and community services fields will be more needed than ever, a press release said.

JCEO CEO Bruce Garcia said in a statement that human services was about serving others by helping them reach their full potential, adding strength and increased prosperity to the community.

“JCEO is excited to partner with Clinton Community College on this new and exciting program. We feel that this program is more relevant than ever given the current climate as a result of COVID-19.”



Students will be enrolled in two courses at a time starting in January, according to a press release.

The courses included in the series, which will be offered remotely at specific meeting times, are Introduction to Human Services, Introduction to Basic Counseling Skills and Foundations for College Success.

The release said those classes would “provide a head start toward continuing on at Clinton for an associate’s degree in either Human Services, Applied Psychology or Criminal Justice.”

The CCC Foundation and area partners will offer two scholarships for up to 15 students.

The first will cover tuition and fees for 15 students who enroll in and complete the program. The second, an “Earn to Learn” scholarship, will give each student up to $1,000 to assist with other expenses throughout the semester.

North Country Workforce Development Executive Director Sylvie Nelson said the series “will give job seekers opportunities to access health care career pathways by filling a need in the human services, addiction and criminal justice fields.”



BHSN President and CEO Mark Lukens said there has never been a better time to enter the human services field.

“In the past, there was a perception that choosing a career in the human services space required a tradeoff, the significant impact one can have on life versus competitive compensation and career advancement,” he continued.

“That has changed. Today, many of those organizations that are dedicated to truly impacting lives and changing the world for the better are the same organizations that are using leading edge technology, data, predictive analytics, innovative models of care and more to accelerate change, dramatically improve care and outcomes, and create sustainable organizations that offer greater opportunities for career progression and advancement.”

Fields within human services include abuse and domestic violence prevention, foster care, youth development, victim assistance and disaster relief, among others.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, social and community service managers earned a median salary of $67,150 in 2019 and entry level positions have starting salaries just under $30,000.

Prior the pandemic, the projected growth rate for those positions were 13 percent.



To learn more about the program, sign up for an info session or register, visit

To be considered for the scholarships, priority registration deadline for the Spring 2021 cohort is Dec. 11, 2020.

Contact CCC Social and Behavioral Sciences and Criminal Justice Department Chair Jarrod Cone at or by phone at 518-562-4344 for more information about course content.

For additional information about available scholarships, contact CCC Foundation Executive Director Wendy Baker at