When Kristen Famiano transferred to St. Clair County Community College, she took advantage of every opportunity she could to be involved.
Famiano played on the SC4 basketball and softball teams and even took part in a play as she worked toward her associate of arts degree.
Now, as a counselor at Romeo High School, Famiano encourages her students to take advantage of their opportunities when they move on.
“Really, community college can be as big or as small, or offer as much or as little as a student wants,” she said. “From a career standpoint, you try to make connections in those departments, do that, and take that extra step to really be an active participant in your education.”
Famiano is in her 17th year as a counselor at Romeo. Prior to that, she was a teacher at St. Clair High School for four years.
She graduated from SC4 in 1995, earned her bachelor’s degree in secondary education from the University of Michigan-Flint, and her Master’s degree in counseling from Wayne State University.
While at SC4, she was a member of the 1994-95 women’s basketball team which finished as national runner-up. She and her teammates were part of the inaugural class inducted into the Skippers Athletics Hall of Fame in 2017.
Famiano had transferred to SC4 from a school in New York. Even though she was new to the area, she was able to build valuable relationships at SC4, which helped her through a difficult time following her father’s heart surgery.
“My family had just moved to Port Huron, so I just threw myself into all the activities,” she said. “Everyone was very accepting and welcoming. I had lived in the Berkley (Michigan) area my whole life, and I didn’t know anybody. It was definitely a fork in the road for me, but the feel of the campus, the welcoming attitude, I think that made all the difference for me.”
Her relationships also helped her secure employment after earning her bachelor’s degree in a field she grew to love while at SC4.
“It all came together at SC4,” she said. “I was able to connect with the teachers and fall in love with the subject matter.”
Famiano said she drives by campus any time she’s in Port Huron and likes what she sees from her alma mater.
“It seems like it’s just growing and changing with the times, which is nice to see,” she said. “It’s not stagnant, but it’s moving forward with job needs and community needs.”