Tracey Gater, a resident of Easton and a social work graduate, chose Northampton Community College (NCC) because it was close to home and she had heard great things about the College.  

She especially liked that, as a member of the Social Work Club, she helped donate food to people in need. “I never thought college had programs like this,” she says. “I enjoyed the experience.  

Another high point in her experience of being a social work major was a trip to Harrisburg, led by Professor Hope Horowitz, where she met social work students from all over Pennsylvania who traveled to the state capital to demand social justice and equality.  

In addition to the Social Work Club, Gater earned induction into the Sigma Alpha Pi honor society for leaders.  

Her advice to students is to love what you do and stay focused. “Do not hesitate to get tutoring if you need help,” she says. “The faculty is amazing; they are very kind, helpful and polite.”

Tracey Gater and President Erickson/Photo by Scott Johnson

Moreover, she shares a lesson she learned at NCC: “No matter how tough it may get, fight hard and stick it out and accomplish your goals. Education is key. It made me determined to finish school. Don’t give up,” she says.  

Gater’s road to a degree was not easy. During her time at NCC, she lost her mother and also lacked the funds to pay for her classes. At that time, she went to school part-time instead of fulltime.  

She now plans to continue her education at Cedar Crest College to earn her bachelor’s degree in social work, with the goal of becoming a school social worker.