Student Success Drives Annual Goals
With all roads leading to student success, the Governing Board and I have been working to create the maps that will guide our decisions and activities for the upcoming year.
My 2014-15 goals—approved at the Sept. 10 Governing Board meeting—reflect specific objectives and activities to help each of us further the mission of student success. The objectives not only address students transferring to four-year universities, but also include activities to reflect our commitment to preparing students for local jobs.
Similar to last year, my goals are divided into four sections: Improving Institutional Effectiveness, Ensuring Student Access to Success, Improving Culture and Climate and Strengthening Institutional Advancement. Many of the objectives within each goal remain the same. What has changed are the action steps.
Key changes have been made in Goal #2: Ensuring Student Access to Success to include a district-wide student success focus. Over the next year, I will be working with all of you to create a “students come first” plan. Leveraging resources from new SSSP funding and the new Title V grant, the plan will help us meet our ambitious, but achievable, goal of increasing our student completion rate by 3.5% each year.
Our Governing Board is also working diligently to ensure student success is reflected in the goals and objectives they are finalizing.
Open Hours and Governing Board Listening Tour
After you have read my goals and objectives, I am hoping that you will join me and the Governing Board at the upcoming open hours and Listening Tour to provide your ideas and feedback. My next open hours are on Friday, Sept. 26 from 1- 3 p.m. You can sign up for an open hours appointment online.
The next stop on the Governing Board’s Listening Tour is Financial Aid. New procedures and software have speeded up the time students are receiving their aid. To hear more about it, you are invited to attend the Listening Tour with Governing Board Members Terri Valladolid and Nora Vargas on Thursday, Sept. 25 at 7 a.m. in the Cesar Chavez Student Services Center.
Employee of the Quarter
Congratulations to Brenda Mora, who is our newest Employee of the Quarter. Brenda, a publications associate in the Communications, Community and Government Relations office, is one of the most creative people on campus. Everything from invitations for the Education Foundation gala and Veterans’ Day ceremonies, to the decorations at the CSEA breakfast and retirement parties, Brenda’s talent comes through. Brenda not only shares her talent with our college, her outreach into the community through the Women’s History Month Street Painting Festival and the Festival Día de los Muertos open the college to our neighbors.
When you see Brenda, be sure to give her a high five for her outstanding work.
PHOTO: Employee of the Quarter, Brenda Mora (right)
Successful MESA Night
With internships at such places as SPAWAR, UC San Diego Medical Center, NASA, Cooke Bridges and the Moores Cancer Research Center, our MESA students had a fulfilling and educational summer. The 23 students participating in those internships presented their research and findings at the annual MESA night Friday. Their parents and the mentors who helped them over the summer were on hand to celebrate their accomplishments. Thank you to Dr. Raga Bakhiet for your ongoing efforts to bring these opportunities to our math, science and engineering students.
PHOTO: Annual MESA Night
Phi Theta Kappa Inductees
Southwestern College’s Phi Theta Kappa installed 67 new members—including Governing Board Vice President Norma Hernandez’ nephew—at its ceremony Saturday. These new inductees are now part of the largest honor society in American higher education. Congratulations to the students and the faculty members who support their pursuit of educational excellence. Special thanks to Professor Myriam Moody who spends many hours planning activities with the Phi Theta Kappa students.