CCC students join districts across state to rally at Capitol


Coconino Community College students joined students from all 10 community college districts to rally for support at the Arizona Capitol.



PHOENIX, Ariz. - Coconino Community College student Rosa Ortiz grew up in Flagstaff, and when it was time for college, she knew she wasn’t ready for a big university.


“I’m taking the steps I need to prepare for university,” Ortiz said. “Here, I feel at home.”


Ortiz is among more than nearly 300,000 students in Arizona who attend community colleges. She and students, staff and presidents of all 10 of the state’s community college districts were at the Arizona Capitol on Wednesday, Feb. 19 for Community College Day at the Capitol. Their purpose was to rally for a day to urge legislators to invest in community colleges and the future of Arizona.


All the colleges showcased their students and programs. At the CCC booth, staff and students were on hand to discuss three new programs preparing for launch at the college – Cybersecurity, Marine Maintenance Technician and Veterinary Technician. For a photo essay of the day, visit us here.


College presidents and chancellors, including CCC President Colleen Smith, took the opportunity to explain how the state’s community college system is the backbone of Arizona’s higher-educational system that meets the training and educational needs of the most in-demand jobs of today. To that end, community colleges hoped for a commitment from state lawmakers for equitable state funding and policies to help create programs and jobs that change student lives and contribute to the state’s economy.


Community College Day at the Capitol was organized by Arizona Community Colleges, a consortium of college leaders who are “working to ensure broad access to high-quality education and training so that all Arizonans can achieve their postsecondary education and training goals, complete a degree or certificate, and/or transfer to a university.”


“Historical reductions in state funding have placed a strain on our resources,” according to information from Arizona Community Colleges. “We want to continue to collaborate with the Legislators and Governor Ducey to Fund What Works.”


Ortiz said she came to the rally because she wanted state lawmakers to know how important her community college experience has been to her.


“I really like how the community colleges are getting together and showing off that they have some impressive programs,” Ortiz said.


After she complete her studies at CCC, Ortiz wants to transfer to the University of Arizona to study PreHealth Careers.


CCC student Fritz Lamoureux came to the college because he wanted to grow his skills in a field of personal passion – archaeology. Although he dreamed ever since he was 6-years-old that he wanted to get a doctorate degree, he didn’t have the grades to immediately start at a university.


“College didn’t really seem like an option,” Lamoureux said, adding that he the first generation in his family to attend college.


He said he credits CCC faculty and staff for giving him the inspiration to continue his studies at university. Additionally, the class sizes were small and tuition is much more affordable.


“It’s so personal,” he said. “You’re not lost in a sea of students.”


During the event at the Capitol, students were treated to an opportunity to sit in on the legislative sessions going on in the House and the Senate.


For more information about Arizona Community Colleges, visit



Friday, 21st February 2020

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  • Friday, 21st February 2020