The Maine Professional Drivers Association raised $39,000 for Camp Sunshine, of Casco, and Camp POSTCARD, of Poland. The funds were raised during its annual Maine Trucking for Kids Convoy, held at the Hannaford corporate headquarters on Pleasant Hill Road in Scarborough, on Sept. 17.

The Maine Professional Drivers Association raised $39,000 for Camp Sunshine and Camp POSTCARD during its annual Maine Trucking for Kids Convoy, held at the Hannaford corporate headquarters in Scarborough on Sept. 17. Courtesy photo

Camp Sunshine, which caters to critically ill kids and their families will divide the funds with Camp POSTCARD, which caters to disadvantaged kids. The event’s top fundraiser was Jack Roussel of PAF Transportation, who raised over $10,000.

Many local companies and drivers participated in the event which included a 71-truck convoy through Scarborough and South Portland around the Maine Mall, Payne Road, and Route 1 areas.

During the event, a touch-a-truck activity took place along with a truck show and a driving competition for the big rigs. A lot of the funds were also raised from the auction, prize raffle, and a large barbecue meal.

The association, in a news release, wrote “special thanks go out to Hannaford for the use of the facility and the parking area for staging the convoy and other activities.”

The event was hosted by the Maine Professional Drivers Association and the South Portland Lions Club, both of whom have been involved with the annual event for nearly 25 years. More details will be posted on the Maine Professional Drivers Association website at


Fall enrollment up at community colleges

Enrollment at Maine’s community colleges hit a historic high of 19,477 students this fall, surpassing the record set in 2011 and up 16 percent from last year, according to a Maine Community College system news release. Enrollment was boosted by a new tuition-free scholarship for recent high school graduates, expanded nursing programs statewide, more than 700 short-term workforce students moving into degree programs, and an easing of pandemic-related restrictions that expanded on-campus housing capacity.

Courtesy image

“At a time when Maine desperately needs more skilled workers and Mainers need good jobs to support themselves and their families, we’re extremely pleased to see enrollment increase so significantly,” said David Daigler, president of the Maine Community College System, in an email. “These numbers show the strength of our offerings, the hard work and drive of our students, and the promise of a stronger economy for Maine as these students enter the workforce or continue on to four-year degrees and beyond. I am humbled by how hard the people at the colleges and system have worked to make the dream of a college education come to fruition for so many Mainers who want the opportunity to improve their lives through education.”

Total headcount this fall is 19,477 students, up from 16,792 students last year, according to the official tally on Oct. 15. The previous high point was 17,911 students in 2011.

Sixty-one percent, or 8,186 students, qualified for free tuition under the Free College Scholarship because they graduated from high school or earned a Hi-SET diploma in 2020, 2021, 2022, or 2023. The scholarship covers 100 percent of a student’s tuition and mandatory fees, which is $3,750 a year for the average full-time student. That’s the lowest college tuition in New England.

Of the 8,186 Free College Scholarship-eligible students this fall, 3,668 are new students enrolling for the first time, and 4,518 are continuing community college students who were previously enrolled.


Since the Free College Scholarship program was proposed by Gov. Janet Mills and enacted by the Legislature in early 2022, 11,543 Free College Scholarship-eligible students have enrolled, surpassing the administration’s target of enrolling 8,000 students by the end of the 2023-24 academic year.

“The impact of the Free College Scholarship is impressive,” Daigler wrote. “In its first year, it attracted a higher-than-expected number of young men and lower-income students to college. As a group they had a higher fall-to-spring retention rate than the rest of the student body. All of that is particularly noteworthy since these students had a high school experience significantly disrupted by the pandemic. We’re looking forward to welcoming the graduating classes of 2024 and 2025 to this transformative scholarship.”

In addition to offering a tuition-free scholarship, 2022-23 was also the year Maine’s community colleges added 200 seats to the nursing program; had more than 700 short-term workforce graduates enroll in degree programs; and expanded on-campus housing as pandemic-related restrictions eased.

Official fall enrollment figures do not include the thousands of students enrolled in rolling short-term workforce programs that take less than a year to complete. Last year, 12,000 students enrolled in short-term workforce programs over the course of the year. Those courses focus on tailored job skills training that prepares students for their first job or helps them advance in their career in the trades, health care, hospitality, business, and many other Maine industries. Last year, more than 700 short-term training graduates earned scholarships to enroll in a degree or certificate program.

Altogether, MCCS serves more than 30,000 students a year through early college courses, two-year degree programs, one-year certificate programs, short-term workforce training, advanced certificates, and continuing education.

Rotary Club will host conversation with Sen. King


The South Portland-Cape Elizabeth Rotary announced that it will host an in-person conversation with Maine Sen. Angus King on Monday, Nov. 6. According to the club, “it’s an  opportunity to learn more about the senator’s work, ask questions in the company of friends and neighbors.”

The event will be held at the South Portland Community Center at 21 Nelson Road in South Portland. The agenda includes a 9:30 a.m. continental breakfast followed by the conversation with King from 10 to 11 a.m.

All attendees must preregister at Space is limited.

There is no cost to attend. A $10 donation for breakfast is suggested. Proceeds to go to the Rotary International PolioPlus campaign.

Church schedules craft fair

Grace Bible Church will host a Church Craft Fair on Saturday, Nov. 4, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The church is located at  74 Deering Road in Gorham.

For more information, call Faith at 207-712-8358.

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