High School Short Fiction Winners

Bucks Announces the Winners of the Annual High School Short Fiction Contest

 The Bucks County Short Fiction Contest for High School students is pleased to announce the winners for the Spring 2024 contest. There were 38 entries this year. Olivia Beno, a junior at Pennsbury High School, and a Yardley resident, was awarded first place for her story, “Death and Dreaming on the Golden Coast.” Alaina Kass, a junior at Neshaminy High School and a resident of Levittown, won second place for “The Sin of a Smile.” Katie Krom, a senior at Neshaminy High School, and also a Levittown resident, captured third place for “Forever, Shattered.” Dr. David Venditto, a faculty member at Bucks County Community College, made the final selections. Venditto said of Beno’s work, “This story had a dreamlike quality to it that mirrored the protagonist’s own mental state, stuck going through memories and imagined future scenarios. The writing is beautiful and heartbreaking, realistically conveying the feelings of loss that accompany an untimely death. It taps into a deeply relatable feeling that lingers long after reading the story.” Of the story by Kass, Venditto said, “The writing itself is engaging, with carefully chosen words that reveal a truly surprising ending. The textured and grounded world of the story isn’t incongruous with the more supernatural conclusion, due to the foreshadowing sprinkled throughout. Furthermore, excellent pacing and development of the protagonist give the twist a visceral impact.” In Krom’s “Forever, Shattered,” Venditto noted, “The basic premise is simple, but thematically intriguing. The story turns what would ostensibly be a typical teenage romance into a fantastical tragedy. In addition, a lot of interesting visuals are conjured from the author’s eloquent writing.” A reception for the winners and their friends and family will be held on the Newtown Campus later this month. Bucks County Community College is the sponsor of the Bucks Short Fiction Contests. The contest receives support from the Department of Language and Literature.

BCCC Awarded $250,000 Grant to Prepare Next Generation of PA Workers

 Bucks County Community College’s Center for Workforce Development has been awarded a $250,000 grant through the PA Department of Labor & Industry to expand access to its highly successful Building and Construction Trades pre-apprenticeship program. Bucks will be one of 14 recipients of the state’s $3.3 million Schools-to-Work initiative. The Center for Workforce Development at the College will continue its partnership with the Bucks County Workforce Development Board, the Philadelphia Building & Construction Trades Council and the Sheet Metal Workers Union Local 19 which serves as sponsor for Bucks’ Building and Construction Trades Pre-Apprenticeship program. The pre-apprenticeship program aims to increase diversity in enrollment and offer math and literacy skills for entry into the trades. Together, Bucks will provide the hands-on experience necessary to prepare graduates for jobs in the trades including basic electricity, plumbing and carpentry. Other fundamental topics included in the training are shop measurement and math, blueprint reading, welding basics, job planning benchwork and layout. Participants will earn industry-recognized credentials in OSHA10 and Forklift Safety. Students will also work one-on-one with a career coach to assist with the next steps whether it is finding an apprenticeship or preparing for union exams. “We are so pleased to be able to expand access to our building and construction pre-apprenticeship training program. Bucks continues to strive to provide education and career opportunities for people whether they are seeking a degree or aiming to go directly to the workforce,” says Susan Herring, Associate Vice President, Workforce Development. The $6,500 training is free for those that meet eligibility requirements. Bucks will recruit interested applicants from Bucks County and the surrounding region including Philadelphia. Ms. Herring went on to say: “With these funds, we will be able to continue providing our Building and Construction pre-apprenticeship at no cost and will aim to attract diverse candidates including women to enter the construction field and start in careers with life-sustaining wages upon graduation.” The first cohort under the Schools-to-Work grant is anticipated to start in the beginning of 2025 with recruiting starting towards the end of 2024. The 10-week free bootcamp will be held Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Center for Advanced Technologies on the Epstein Campus at Lower Bucks in Bristol. The Center is a brand-new, state-of-the-art training facility which offers job seekers access to high-quality career training programs in advanced manufacturing and other programs. The new facility will provide students with an up-to-the-minute, high-tech learning environment. Find more information on our Workforce Development site. Requirements for the Building and Construction Trades Pre-Apprenticeship program include: Must be a U.S. Citizen or possess a Green Card Must be at least 18 years old Must have a high school diploma or GED Must pass an aptitude test, drug screening, background check (determined on a case-by-case basis), and a physical test Daily attendance and punctuality Must have reliable transportation to commute to training For more information about this program, contact Susan Herring at 267-685-4827 or
Life in a Jar cover image

BCCC Hosts Life in a Jar Book and Panel Discussion on April 16

Jack Mayer, author of the book about Irena Sendler, who saved hundreds of Jewish children during WWII will be joined by local panelists to discuss what it means to resist, rescue, and build community in times of war and conflict. Bucks County Community College invites the public to a book and panel discussion about Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project on Tuesday, April 16 at 6 p.m. in the Zlock Performing Arts Center on the Newtown Campus (275 Swamp Road, Newtown, Pa. 18940). The book, written by Jack Mayer, tells the story of Irena Sendler, a Polish woman who saved hundreds of Jewish children from the Warsaw ghetto. As part of a secret World War II organization called Żegota, Irena Sendler (1910–2008) rescued several hundred Jewish children from the Warsaw ghetto — providing false identities and hiding places in orphanages, convents, and private homes. Mayer’s book weaves Sendler’s story with that of the Kansas students who helped tell it to the world. In addition to author Jack Mayer, the panel will feature: Rabbi Anna Boswell-Levy of Kol Emet, Yardley; Barbara Simmons, Adjunct Professor, International Peace and Conflict Resolution, Arcadia University, and Executive Board of NAACP, Bucks County Chapter; and Nancy Isserman, Co-Director, Transcending Trauma Project, Director, Operation Home and Healing, Council for Relationships and Faculty, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Gratz College. Admission is free, but advance registration is required. Visit the Zlock Performing Arts Center to reserve your spot today. To learn more about the History of the Holocaust course or the April 16 panel discussion, contact the Department of Social and Behavioral Science at or 215-968-8270.
close up of a 3D printer

Bucks County Community College to Host 3D Printing Expo

The two-day expo will feature industry experts at the Newtown Campus, April 18 -19  Bucks County Community College’s inaugural 3D Printing Expo will be held at the Newtown Campus on Thursday, April 18 and Friday, April 19, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The expo will showcase the latest advances in 3D printing and additive manufacturing technology. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet with representatives of some of the most influential companies in the industry. All are invited to attend. Bringing together enthusiasts, experts and industry leaders, the 3D Printing Expo promises to inspire and spark your passion for innovation. Roundtable panel discussions on the evolving state of the additive manufacturing industry will be held Thursday, April 18 and will include representatives from Allegheny Educational Systems, AON3D, Creaform/Ametek, Filament Innovations, Formlabs, Mosaic, Phillips Hybrid, Stratasys, UltiMaker, and Xact Metal. Register in advance by visiting the 3D Printing Expo site by April 16, 2024. After April 16, registration will be at the door. Please contact Stan Timek at or 215-504-8548 for registration assistance, exhibitor information, or sponsorship opportunities. The Newtown Campus is located at 275 Swamp Road, Newtown, Pa. 18940. Free parking is available. The 3D Printing Expo will be on the second floor of the Linksz Pavilion. The 3D Printing Expo is made possible by the College’s Workforce Development & Strategic Partnerships division as well as the Learning Resources department.

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