Monday, July 21, 2014

Retention is focus of CGCC predictive model

A Business Officer article profiling college 'big data' projects highlights Chandler-Gilbert Community College's predictive retention model which helps predict, based on a variety of factors, those students who are more likely to need support to complete their studies.

The article titled "Predictive Patterns" by Margo Vanover Porter interviews Bradley Kendrex, associate dean of finance and business services, as he and his team including Theresa Wong, director of research, planning and development, try to answer how the college can know earlier when a student is at risk of leaving.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

New ceramics mural depicts principles of art and design

Four of 13 panels of the new ceramics mural
depict light, texture, line and space.
All good art embodies at least one, though you may not recognize it right away.

The principles and elements of design are taught in all art classes and are the focus of a new mural installed at the Chandler-Gilbert Community College’s (CGCC) Pecos Campus in April.

Created by ceramics lab technician Sam Hodges through a grant funded by the Maricopa Center for Learning and Instruction, the 13 panels of the mural represent the six principles (balance, proportion, repetition, rhythm, emphasis and variety) and seven elements  of design (space, form, time, color, light, texture and line). Each panel measures 2 feet by 4 feet, and provide a practical demonstration of how the elements and principles are utilized in art.

The mural was installed on the north exterior wall of the ceramics studio facing the Environmental Technology Center, a location chosen by the artist.  “It was important to place the mural in a location that was easily accessible by art students, so they could be used as a reference or to open a dialogue,” said Hodges.

Hodges started as an art student at Mesa Community College (MCC) and was chosen along with two other students by her instructor Linda Speranza to do an 38' x 17' mural for that college. The project opened a doorway to a career in public art.  She also began working at CGCC.

In 2010, Hodges conceived and proposed the creation of a mural demonstrating the principles of design for MCC, which was approved and installed on the art building. As staff at CGCC, she saw a need to have a similar mural at the Pecos Campus and widened the scope to include the elements of design as well.

Though the grant, which included the addition of the elements of design being added to the original six principles at the MCC campus, was approved, the funding was less than requested. The donation of all of the glazes by Amaco as well as the donation of all the clay saved approximately $3,500. David Andersen also charged a much lower fee to install the murals.

“The murals are representative of a circle of support for public art,” said Hodges. “I was given the opportunity as a student to become a public artist, which led me to propose and create art that is funded by the public and supported with corporate donations and allows me to engage other students in the production of public art.  It’s very rewarding.”

M.E.N. group awarded chapter of the year

Members of the CGCC MEN chapter receive their award
as chapter of the year.
The Chandler-Gilbert Community College chapter of the Male Empowerment Network (MEN) was awarded chapter of the year by the Maricopa County Community College District on May 2.

The group was started two years ago by former staff members Cesar Becerra and Jesus Chaidez Hernandez after visiting Estrella Mountain Community College’s program and seeing the impact it was having on male minority students there.

Though the chapter started off slow, it picked up significant momentum in 2013-2014 with Martine Garcia ’14 as president and Tony Little, manager of college cashier services, as campus co-advisor along with Jill Wendt, faculty in Social and Behavioral Sciences.

“Although we planted the seed, Martine and Tony opened a door,” said Becerra, coordinator of recruitment programs at Mesa Community College. “They and the other members really took the chapter to the next level and made it a family where the guys could hang out and get involved in other campus activities and give each other support when they tripped up. That support often makes a difference whether they complete their studies or not.”

The mission of MEN has three primary goals:
  • Increase the access, persistence, and graduation rate of minority male students
  • Connect minority male students with academic and professional support resources/services
  • Create a culture of success and empowerment among minority male students. 
“The honor of being chosen as chapter of the year is beyond words,” said Little. “It validates the transformation that I am privileged to witness as the members become involved and committed to not only their own growth but to each other. MEN has helped them become better leaders and individuals, challenging them to focus on their grades, their community and their future success.”

For Garcia, the recognition is bittersweet.

“It has been a complete honor to serve as the president of such an amazing group of young, talented, ambitious, and educated men and women,” said Garcia. “I remember a group who didn't know anyone and were unsure of how to handle life and college. Now I see a family, who would do anything to make sure that their fellow brother or sister succeeds. It has just been a humbling experience.”

Student's efforts to save daughter leads to recognition and scholarship

Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) student Aimee Johnson has been a volunteer with United Blood Services and Be the Match for the past five years, raising awareness of the need for under-represented populations to become blood and bone marrow donors. Her interest stems from her 6-year-old daughter’s need to find a bone marrow match that will save her life.

Johnson, who applied and was selected for CGCC’s Student Public Policy Forum (SPPF) at the beginning of her sophomore year, selected the issue as her capstone project, a requirement of the SPPF program. Her project included coordinating a combined blood donation and bone marrow registration day at the Pecos Campus.

Her story and this effort is captured in the article “Turning a Day of Hope into a Legacy of Saving Lives” in the June issue of Chandler Lifestyle magazine (page 22).

Just prior to graduation, Johnson was selected for the Civic Leadership Medallion award by Maricopa Community College District Chancellor Rufus Glasper in recognition of her level of civic participation and leadership. She was also awarded the Maria Hesse Leadership Scholarship which will help cover expenses for the remaining semester Johnson will be at CGCC before transferring to Arizona State University, 

“As a mom and a student, I’m just one person doing what I need to do,” said Johnson. “There is no one thing I was doing that I thought was extra ordinary. However, receiving the two awards made me stop and consider that there are a lot of ‘one persons’ out there and when we put our efforts together, we can overcome anything.”

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Three receive honors scholarships

CGCC President Linda Lujan (left) with
honors scholarship recipients Justin
Fordham, Jacquelyn Rose Lupo and
Heather King. William Guerriero, CGCC vice
president of Academic Affairs was
also present.
Three Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) honors students were awarded scholarships during the Honors Program ​Scholarship Reception and Academic Showcase on April 28. The students were selected from a group of honors program applicants based on a holistic review of their academics as well as contributions to the college and the community.

"Often scholarships are given to students as a recruiting tool," said Shirley Miller, faculty and co-director of the honors program at CGCC. "In this case, these students have proven themselves to excel beyond the requirements of the general classroom and to maintain a consistently high standard of performance. To be recognized as outstanding among fellow honors students is a significant honor."

Justin Fordham was awarded the Chancellor's Scholarship​,​ which is offered to one student at each Maricopa County Community College annually to acknowledge and reward students who demonstrate the very highest academic achievement and participate in service. ​It covers up to 18 credit hours of in-county tuition and fees for two semesters. In addition, the scholarship includes a cash award of $250 for books and supplies each semester.​ Fordham will continue his studies at CGCC next semester but plans to earn his associate degree and transfer to University of Arizona to study nursing.

Heather King and Jacquelyn Rose Lupo received a Foundation Scholarship, which rewards and encourages highly motivated, academically gifted students with a $500 award. In addition to excellence in academics, King has participated in the Chandler-Gilbert Dance Company, has served at the Save the Family Thrift Store, and works part-time. She plans to become a pediatric nurse. Lupo, a business management major, will complete her bachelor’s degree with Northern Arizona University by enrolling in the Connect2NAU program in business at CGCC. Lupo earned the award based on her honors program achievements in the classroom and many volunteer hours in the community. She also works part-time.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Students code for a cause in 24-hour-event

Over 50 Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) students pulled an all nighter Friday, April 4 creating educational apps for smart phones and web-based devices focused on improving early literacy. Representatives from Intel were on-site coaching and mentoring students throughout the 24-hour period as they developed fun, interactive reading and writing games for children and families. SanTan Sun News covered the event in their May 17-June 6 issue.

Monday, May 12, 2014

One student's story brings CGCC's commencement live to the Valley

3-TV aired the story of Habib Matar live at commencement on Friday, May 9. Matar started attending CGCC at age 13 and graduated with three associate degrees at age 16. He will continue his studies at Arizona State University. View the segment.