Stark State College

A photo of the Career Services Facebook live.

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the highest levels of unemployment since the Great Depression. In Ohio, April’s unemployment rate was close to 17%.  Stark State College wants to help those in need of work. It’s offering free career services to community members.

People can get help exploring career paths and job opportunities, improving resumes and interviewing.

In a Facebook live session, Career Services Coordinator Natalie Harrington described their assistance as more personal than getting help online.

a new medical lab at Stark State College Akron

Stark State College Akron has finished construction on the final phase of its building in time to welcome students for the fall semester.

a photo of the Kent campus

Here are your morning headlines for Wednesday, December 12: 

photo of Stark State College

This month, both the University of Akron and Kent State University announced partnerships with 2-year colleges.  It’s part of a growing trend in higher education.

photo of Para Jones, John Green, Steve Millard, Dan Horrigan

The University of Akron and Stark State College have announced a partnership to allow students to proceed from a 2-year program to a 4-year degree with much greater ease.

Bill Hanna / Perry Strong

A student support group in Stark County called Perry Strong is hosting a free suicide prevention training at Stark State College.

The group formed in response to the number of youth suicides in the area. Last year 70 people died by suicide in Stark County, according to the Stark County Coroner’s Office.

At the training, a college counselor will use a technique called QPR, which stands for question, persuade and refer. Perry Strong is encouraging faculty, students and parents of high school and middle school students to attend.

photo of Stark State Akron

The Akron School of Practical Nursing is going to be getting a new home.

Stark State College is taking over the operation of the program, which has been run by the Akron Public Schools for 67 years. Robyn Steinmetz, the director of marketing and communications for Stark State, says the college is looking forward to adding the program.

Ohio gun laws

Here are your morning headlines for Friday, March 2:

Stark State College, Akron
Tim Rudell / WKSU

Construction of the first building for Stark State College’s new Akron Campus is nearing completion.  School President Para Jones took a tour to see how things are coming together.   

May 26th is the grand opening of the new building, but Jones says by design just two of the building’s three floors will be in use, at first.

photo of FirstEnergy linemen

FirstEnergy is offering to pay tuition and fees for some students to attend Stark State College, if they’re interested in working with electricity – outdoors.

The company’s Power Systems Institute is a two-year program at several community colleges, including Stark State. The training could lead to work with the utility company as line workers or at a substation, which can often be in tight spaces, or it can involve being high up on steel structures.

General Motors

A new partnership between General Motors and Honda to develop and build fuel cells in Michigan for their advanced “green” vehicles is seen as a plus for Stark State College.

Jim Maloney coordinates Stark State’s Fuel Cell Prototyping Center, where students study the electricity-producing devices. He expects excitement over the GM-Honda partnership to boost enrollment.


Despite the drop in oil and gas production, graduates of Stark State College’s petroleum industry training program are  finding jobs quickly.

Since the two-year program started in 2013, 46 students have graduated with skills in maintaining oil-and-gas-production facilities. The dean of engineering technology, Donald Ball, says all of them are employed because the program does not focus on drilling, where the jobs are susceptible to market fluctuations.

Well Site Training Center
Stark State Technical College

Stark State College is getting a half a million dollars from the Ohio Department of Higher Education to expand its advanced oil and gas technology training programs. 

photo of Stark State Akron

Stark State College has found a site for its new Akron campus, and officials are already planning which programs will be offered there.

The $12.5 million campus -- just off Rt. 8 near Summa’s Akron City hospital – is slated to open in two years. About a quarter of the school’s students already come from Summit County, and Stark State President Para Jones says the new campus will likely offer a mix of degrees.

photo of Macy's Chapel Hill

State lawmakers are including money in Ohio’s proposed capital budget to help Stark State College set-up an Akron campus.

The budget would include $6.5 million for the new campus, and Stark State spokeswoman Marisa Rohn says about a quarter of the school’s students are from Summit County. She also says that the school is still in the exploratory phase of finding a space in Akron.

photo of Macy's Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill Mall in Akron continues to lose tenants, but one of its three anchors may not be empty for long.

Several stores – including Old Navy -- have left the mall since January. The FYE music and video store closes today, and Macy’s closed on Saturday.

Crystal Davis from Akron was at Macy’s on its final day, and sees parallels with the shuttered Rolling Acres Mall.

photo of Macy's

Stark State College is looking at Summit County for a possible expansion, including at a soon-to-be vacant department store in Akron.

One location it's considering is the Macy’s at Chapel Hill Mall, which is closing. Stark State spokeswoman Marisa Rohn says the new campus needs to have ample parking and good access to public transportation.