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Working the dream

James Rugur, a graduate of Corning Community College, earned top academic honors at graduation from the New York State Correctional Academy in Albany, N.Y. The Corning, N.Y., resident is a corrections officer, which is a life-long dream.

 “I’ve always wanted a career in law enforcement,” said James. “My degree from CCC got me into the profession and prepared me to succeed at the Academy. Graduating from the Academy opened additional career choices for me.”

James began training for a career in criminal justice in high school as a BOCES student. He came to CCC after hearing from others that it was one of the top programs in New York. He stayed at CCC because of the faculty.  

“The faculty are pretty amazing,” said James. “Professor [Mark] Hartwell always pushed me to do better. He knew I could. He worked with me to make sure I had everything I needed to do well.”  

Shortly after James began studying at CCC, he was deployed to Cuba with the Army National Guard. When he returned to his studies shortly after returning from overseas, Professor Hartwell coached him on effective study skills and showed him techniques that made note-taking easier.

James is an avid hunter and enjoys fishing. He was the first person from his family to graduate college, but will not be the last. Two of his sisters are currently at CCC in the Nursing program.