Non-credit classes offer learning opportunities (and pierogies)

Instructor+Scott+Heineman+teaches+students+how+to+assemble+pierogies+using+the+dough+they+prepared+together+by+hand.
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Non-credit classes offer learning opportunities (and pierogies)

Instructor Scott Heineman teaches students how to assemble pierogies using the dough they prepared together by hand.

Instructor Scott Heineman teaches students how to assemble pierogies using the dough they prepared together by hand.

Claire Kleffman

Instructor Scott Heineman teaches students how to assemble pierogies using the dough they prepared together by hand.

Claire Kleffman

Claire Kleffman

Instructor Scott Heineman teaches students how to assemble pierogies using the dough they prepared together by hand.

Claire Kleffman, North Campus Staff

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As Janet pushes the heel of her palm into the dough, it starts to give in. She laughs and makes jokes with the other people working at the same table as her and gives some helpful tips to a classmate who seems to be having trouble.

They are attempting to make pierogies in CCAC North’s instructional kitchen.
Pierogi-making is one of many non-credit classes offered at CCAC through Community Education. Scott Heineman is teaching about a dozen students with a wide range of ages, from kids with single digit ages to people in their eighties.

Learning here is an interactive experience in a friendly, judgment free environment. Students joked and even offered to help to one another when in need.

Liz Sommers, the CCAC Director of Community Education, says these noncredit classes are very popular. “Not only does community education offer courses on subjects that could advance a student’s career and personal matters, they also supply an opportunity for possible bonding and social connection,” she says. “Noncredit classes can be taken by anyone, all that is required is a simple admission fee. This results in many people coming from different clichés and circumstances, which might not meet each other otherwise, to have something to experience together.”

CCAC offers over 600 different noncredit course options through Community Education. 9,500 students enroll in these classes.

Students have a very wide variety of choices including cooking, languages, fitness, business, dance, computer classes, and many more. While these classes do not offer any college credits, they do propose a chance for personal advancement as well as an opportunity for students to learn new skills. Though no credits are earned, they can be very beneficial for a person’s career and personal benefit.

Claire Kleffman

Sommers says that many use these courses to foster a lifelong love of learning. “Community Education empowers personal advancement offering courses designed to achieve each student’s personal and professional goals,” she says. “The career training and certificate programs help students get a competitive edge in a job search, improve skill sets and gain technical knowledge.”

North campus hosts popular noncredit classes like introduction to guitar, cake decorating, and pottery. West Hills Center offers calligraphy and acrylic painting, among many others.

Sommers says some of the noncredit offerings are somewhat atypical from traditional academic courses. “Popular are the Community Education walking tours which let students experience fun and interesting neighborhoods in the Pittsburgh area,” she says. “Over 100 students visited local restaurants and landmarks while learning fun facts and folklore about each area.”

About the Contributor
Claire Kleffman, North Campus Staff

Claire Kleffman is a writer and photographer from CCAC North. She received an Honorable Mention from the Keystone Student Press Awards (Pennsylvania NewsMedia...

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Non-credit classes offer learning opportunities (and pierogies)