August 2007 – WKOK broadcast about the vision of a young Sunbury man who was travelling to Nanticoke to earn an associates degree. Two listeners, one from Danville and the other from Lewisburg contacted the him and met for coffee at Zelda’s Coffee Shop.
The Pennsylvania Department of Education provided the Guidelines for Establishing A Public Community College in Pennsylvania and having completed the required Background Study (A Susquehanna Valley Community College: A Background Study Based on Secondary Research) in November 2007. Distribution and presentation of the study to community leaders followed and the small group began to to expand.
The Susquehanna Valley Community Education Project, Inc. (SVCEP) was incorporated as a non-profit 501(c)3 in December 2007 to facilitate the establishment of a new community college in the Central Susquehanna Valley. The objective of the SVCEP is to fulfill the requirement guidelines of the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
The Degenstein Library was the first official meeting place of the SVCEP. The Degenstein Library Conference Room was the venue for the official public announcement commencing The Susquehanna Valley Citizens Survey on February 4, 2008. The survey was conducted by professors from Bloomsburg University, Bucknell University and Susquehanna University along with Geisinger Research. Generous donations from the Sunbury Rotary and the Montour County Commissioners offset the cost of the study.
In compliance with the Pennsylvania Department of Education three local studies have been published and are available at the following links:
The SVCEP through a grant obtained by Representative Russ Fairchild, established the Susquehanna Valley Community Education Council (SVCEC) in November 2008.
Members of the the SVCEP have engaged the broader community at fairs and festivals and have gathered 100’s of letters and petition signatures.
Each of the preceding events construct the bridge to our own community college. The final supports that are needed are a viable partnership with a four year state university and a comprehensive community college business plan submitted by local sponsors the Pennsylvania State Board of Education for approval.