Criminal Justice Graduate Jessica Pomarico Finds Ingredients for Success at Mercer

Professors 'Kept It Real'


West Windsor, N.J. – Jessica Golembiewski Pomarico ’21 (A.S., Criminal Justice), of Hamilton, took a four-year break between high school and college due to financial pressures. But once she enrolled at Mercer County Community College (MCCC) in 2019, she was not going to let anything stop her – not even a pandemic.

“I am most proud of myself for working a full-time job and going to school full time without taking any semester breaks,” Pomarico said, whose full-time job is at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Princeton. “I pushed to get this degree. I worked so hard to become the first generation in my family to earn a college degree.”

Intent on pursuing a career in criminal justice with either the FBI or Homeland Security, Pomarico knew that Mercer was an excellent choice. And she wasn’t disappointed.

At every turn, she found exactly what she needed to succeed. She recalls Criminal Justice Professors Cavit Cooley and Elizabeth Bondurant as outstanding. “They were truly amazing teachers,” she said. “They were down to earth, treated students with respect, and listened to you whenever you had a question or needed help. I loved how they related their real-life experiences in the line of duty with our classroom lessons. They kept it real to help us fully understand what we were going to be doing on the job.”

Pomarico also recalls her advisor, Nicole Hover, with deep appreciation. “She was my advisor from day one. She has been there for me, including when I cried with joy in her office after getting word that I had been approved for CCOG.” (CCOG is New Jersey’s Community College Opportunity Grant program, providing tuition funding for eligible students.)

MCCC President Dr. Jianping Wang is also on Pomarico’s thank you list. Dr. Wang takes dance lessons at Pomarico’s studio and the two got to know each other well. “Dr. Wang encouraged me to apply for CCOG and to come back to college at Mercer. Thanks to her, I am now a college graduate,” she maintained.

Pomarico did not limit her Mercer experience to her coursework. “I participated in the Criminal Justice Club and really enjoyed it. At the club meetings, they brought in criminal justice professionals to discuss different jobs. They also held at job fair, and that helped a lot too,” she said.

Like many students, Pomarico lost her job temporarily during the pandemic, which put a serious strain on her finances. Still, she persevered.

Pomarico has transferred to Thomas Edison State University (TESU), where she is continuing for her bachelor's degtree in Criminal Justice. “Mercer truly prepared me for TESU. What I learned is definitely tied to what I’m learning now,” Pomarico said.

Pomarico has straightforward words of encouragement for incoming students. “Push yourself. You can do it,” she said. “And don’t be scared to ask your teachers for help. They are awesome. And they are there to help you.”


More Alumni Feature Stories

Return to Current News

MCCC Home Page



Jessica Pomarico is a proud MCCC grad,
the first in her family to earn a college degree.