Thursday, July 24, 2014

Baseball pitcher is among top 12 in nation

Jon Ferrendelli
Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) baseball pitcher Jon Ferrendelli was named to the First Team All American in Division II by the National Junior College Athletic Association (NCJAA) in June. Selected from a pool of national nominees, Ferrendelli was one of 12 to be selected to the team and is the fourth baseball player from CGCC to receive the honor. Ferrendelli was also named Academic All American for his consistent academic excellence.

“It was phenomenal to have Jon as part of our team. He excelled both academically and athletically,” said Russ Luce, CGCC baseball coach. “When we brought him on, we had aspirations that he would be a good player, but we didn’t anticipate that he would become one of the best – as a player and a student – in the entire conference.”

Ferrendelli finished the 2014 season 7-2 with a 1.38 ERA over 91 innings pitched.  He struck out 100 batters and allowed only 19 runs (14 earned) on the season. During his two years with the Coyotes, Ferrendelli finished 13-4 with a 1.71 ERA and 158 strikeouts over 168 innings.

Ferrendelli graduated in May with high distinction, earning an associate degree in business finance. He is headed to Wichita State on a baseball scholarship to pitch for the Shockers.

CGCC selected as noteworthy Arizona community college

Chandler-Gilbert Community College was selected as one of ten "Noteworthy community colleges in Arizona" in an article posted July 15 on

Among having one of the highest first-year retention rates in the state in 2013, it lists the college's variety of degree and certificate programs in common and niche disciplines, free career services, one-on-one advising and support services designed for midlife career changers as reasons for selection. Read the full article.

New college fitness center offers inexpensive options for Southeast valley residents

The new Coyote Center opened on the Chandler-Gilbert Community College Pecos Campus on July 15. Included in the new building is a 4,000-square-foot fitness center offering a full line of cardiovascular equipment, resistance training machines, a complete free weight section with Olympic lifting platforms, and an outdoor turf field. There is also a 1,800-square-foot group fitness room. 

Community members can enroll in a non-credit class for $80 and have 15 weeks of access to the fitness center. If they sign-up for the two-credit class (PED115), they’ll have access to the fitness center as well as be able to drop into any open group fitness class including yoga, pilates, bootcamp fitness, stretch and relaxation, meditative yoga, tai chi and zumba.

Access to the center means access to the staff who have advanced degrees in exercise science and personal training or strength and conditioning certifications through accredited organizations such as the American College of Sports Medicine, National Strength and Conditioning Association, or National Academy of Sports Medicine.

Other free services available to anyone who enrolls include exercise program design, blood pressure checks, body composition assessment, body circumference measurements, cardiovascular fitness assessment and muscular strength/endurance assessments.

The fitness center opens on Tuesday, Sept. 2. Hours are Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed on Saturdays and Sundays.

For more information call the fitness center at 480-732-7200 or visit

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.”