Dr. Gaba is the first female and first African American president of the institution
Atlantic Cape Community College celebrated the Inauguration of Dr. Barbara Gaba as the college’s ninth president today. Dr. Gaba is the first woman and first African American in office and will preside over the college’s three campuses in Atlantic City, Cape May County and Mays Landing.
Maria Mento, vice chairperson of the board of trustees, presented Gaba with the presidential medallion, representing the beginning of Dr. Gaba’s term.
“It is with incredible gratitude and honor that I stand before you today as the ninth president of Atlantic Cape Community College, a college with a successful legacy of providing educational opportunity throughout the region,” said Dr. Gaba.
The inauguration also marked the conclusion of the college’s 50th year celebration. “It’s an exciting time at Atlantic Cape,” remarked Vice Chairperson Mento. “The fact that we have Dr. Gaba as our new president will help us realize our vision to provide top quality education for our students and be a leading catalyst for economic development in Atlantic and Cape May counties.”
During her speech, Dr. Gaba also told the stories of a few of the students she has met during her time at Atlantic Cape, explaining that the role of a community college is to provide opportunity for all members of the community and help them realize their potential.
“We have many success stories to tell. Truly Atlantic Cape makes an impact on the lives of our students and we will continue to do this work with zeal and passion as we transform the community, one student at a time,” said Gaba.
Since January, Dr. Gaba has seen success in reinvigorating relationships with regional four-year colleges, including Rutgers University, Farleigh Dickinson University and Stockton University, a fellow anchor institution. These agreements allow students with a two-year degree from Atlantic Cape to seamlessly transfer to the other institutions for completion of their bachelor’s degree. She also touched on the importance of strengthening partnerships with area high schools and emphasized the pivotal role Atlantic Cape can play in workforce development, offering specialized programs in culinary arts, STEM, including aviation and drone programs; and nursing. “My goal as president of Atlantic Cape Community College is to turn our challenges into opportunities, for our students and our community,” she announced.
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