HCC Success Stories

Going directly from high school to living on campus at a four-year institution is not for everyone. That’s one of the reasons why alumna Shelby Tittle chose Harford Community College to begin her post-secondary education after graduating from Bel Air High School. “I don’t think I would’ve been comfortable going to a four-year college right out of high school. Harford gave me the opportunity to get a feel for college life while staying close to home. And when I was ready to make the move to a four-year, my advisor at HCC helped me decide what major would be right for me – knowing my career goals at the time.” Beginning at Harford was the right decision for her, especially with her ties there, and she felt right at home. “I love Harford's campus. It is easy to navigate and walkable. I also love seeing friendly faces around campus, from friends of my mother to people I know from when I was a camp counselor at Harford.” Shelby’s mother, Dr. Lisa Tittle, is a Professor of Reading and English at the College.

Shelby recommends Harford to others because there were always people available and willing to help her with every step. “I was most surprised how the faculty seemed genuinely interested in my success and wanted to help me achieve my goals.”

After graduating in May 2016 with an Associate of Arts in General Studies, Shelby transferred to Salisbury University as a communications major with a minor in gender and sexuality studies. Through her involvement as an event planner in a student organization called Sexual Health Advocacy Group at Salisbury, she was named the recipient of a Community Outreach Award. She graduated from Salisbury in May 2018.

Since August 2018, Shelby has been employed as an AmeriCorps member serving with Habitat for Humanity as a construction crew leader. “I work directly under the construction site supervisor to assist in leading the volunteers who come to work on the homes. So I am actually on our construction site full time! We are currently working in Havre de Grace on our Revolutionary Homeownership Project, which includes one single family home and three duplexes. Then I’ll also be working on site in Perryville on a modular home built mostly by Cecil Technical High School students. I find this job incredibly satisfying because this could be the homeowners’ only chance to own their own home. It will always be special to me seeing the keys to a home handed over and the pure happiness exuding from the homeowner.”

Her years at Harford prepared her for her work at Habitat. “The communication skills I’ve learned help me to teach volunteers how to do tasks around the job site. I am also able to research efficiently in order to find correct ways of completing tasks on the construction site,” stated Shelby.

Shelby is considering returning to college to earn a master’s degree sometime in the future. But before she pursues that avenue, she hopes to return to Harford to take additional classes to help her determine what field she might enjoy studying in graduate school. She knows it is an affordable way to explore new avenues.

Her advice to other students: “Listen to your advisor and just take it one semester at a time! You don’t need to get ahead of yourself and worry about everything on your own; your advisor is there to help you – so take advantage of them!”