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  • Staff report

Active Duty Solider, U.S. Army Finds Flexibility in EPCC

Updated: Nov 12, 2020

In the midst of field exercises at Fort Bliss, work, family and being stationed in South Korea, Jason Cannavino, an active duty U.S. Army Soldier, decided he wanted to complete his Associate’s degree.

He needed a college that would fit his busy schedule and a degree plan that offered evening courses and online courses.

That is when his wife and counselors from the Fort Bliss Education Center, suggested El Paso Community College (EPCC).

“I needed a school that was going to be able to work with me,” Cannavino said. “EPCC had campuses that were close to Fort Bliss and my home, making it very convenient for me to head to class as soon as I got off work.

Jason Cannavino and his kids

The flexibility of EPCC with the various campuses as well as the online courses were great since being in the Army, it can be difficult to try to fit a class or two.”

If juggling work, field exercises and fatherhood wasn’t enough - Cannavino was sent on a mission to South Korea for two months, while he was enrolled in school.

With the assistance of his professors, Cannavino said he was not only able to complete his courses and graduate, but also get some real hands on experience in his field of study.

Through the Mass Communication Degree plan, Cannavino was required to complete Service Hours, or volunteer hours with a media related organization meant to provide students with hands-on experience in their field of choice.

Cannavino spoke with his Mass Communication professor, Alex Hinojosa, who suggested other ways he could complete this requirement.

“I ended up working alongside my unit’s Public Affairs Officer and was afforded a chance to take photos and assist in writing press releases with him,” Cannavino said.

Out of the 161 photos Cannavino took, 46 of them were published on the unit’s Facebook page and two of them were published in the Fort Eustis Newspaper - one of which was featured as a cover photo.

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