Monday, October 30, 2017

ArizMATYC Fall 2017 Conference Wrap-Up

Mathematics faculty from around the state gathered at Chandler-Gilbert Community College on Friday, October 6 to consider “Teaching Mathematics in 2017 and Beyond”. The conference featured three keynote speakers, Dr. Ted Coe, Dr. Francis Su, and Dr. Pat Thompson who were tasked to challenge participants to consider the role that mathematics faculty play in developing mathematical literate students.

Dr. Coe’s address was titled Mathematics Education: Issues and Trends Across the States and he delivered just that. Some of the trends are not healthy trends for mathematics students and Ted concluded his presentation by challenging us all to make a difference where we have influence…our classrooms! Consider how we can positively influence our students to experience the learning of mathematics such that they believe that:

  • Math is coherent and founded on relationships of ideas.
  • Math is logical and systematic
  • Math is about authentic problem solvingMath is relevant to everyone
  • Math is about constructing knowledge
  • Math is available to anyone willing to make the effort.
  • My achievement depends on my persistence.

Dr. Su followed up with an inspiring message entitles Mathematics for Human Flourishing. Francis argued that the learning of mathematics ought to include the basic human desires of:

  • Play
    • Use Structure and Freedom
    • Make Room for Investigation, Surprise, Imagination
    • De-emphasize grades
    • Encourage reflection: “What have you learned in this class about the process of doing or creating mathematics?”
  • Beauty
    • Make reflection a regular part of your class: “What do you think is beautiful about math and why?” “Is it amazing to you that math is ‘unreasonably effective’?”
    • Motivate beauty in multiple ways: art, music, diverse cultural sources, patterns, elegant proofs, application.
  • Truth – with a focus on rigorous thinking

    • Check out the “Math Feed” app where you can get news related to mathematics
  • Justice – be someone’s advocate!
  • Love

    • The voice of a student: Since I’ve been back I’ve struggled with math. Calculus has really beat me up. After a 20 year break from it I’m finding it harder to relearn, finding it impossible to imagine I was ever really good at this. But even in the pain and failure of trying to reshape my brain to comprehend, I feel more alive than I ever have before.

Dr. Pat Thompson shared part of a research project where he investigated mathematical content knowledge of teachers in the US and South Korea and he challenged us with the idea that You Must Think Outside Your Classroom to Act Wisely in Your Classroom. Even when teachers have strong mathematical meanings that they wish to convey to students (intended meanings), students often walk away with different meanings (conveyed meanings). For example, suppose a teacher is working with students to convey the meaning of the expression “– – x”. The teachers may have rich, robust meanings that they intend to convey as they claim “– – x = x”. However, students may determine “If you see more than one minus sign, write it without any minus signs.” Pat stressed the importance of both teacher’s meanings and student’s opportunities to make meaning. After sharing several examples of mathematical meanings held by US and South Korean teachers, Pat suggested the following long-term solution for supporting the improvement of teacher’s and student’s mathematical meanings: Create sustainable conditions that support (1) school students’ development of coherent mathematical meanings and ways of thinking, and (2) support college mathematics instructors’ attempts to extend them. In the short term, Pat provided five foci:
  • Professional development focused on teachers’ mathematical meanings for the mathematics they teach
  • Professional development focused on ways that students create mathematical meaning from instruction
  • Intensive and sustained improvement of future high school teachers’
  • mathematical preparation for the mathematics they will teach
  • Politics: Garner political support for the above
  • Politics: Stop blaming teachers for the problems in school mathematics. They take their college mathematics from mathematics departments.

You can access the PowerPoint slides for each of these presentations by going to

Sunday, October 29, 2017

CGCC Hosts Annual Veteran Expo for Local Vets

Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) is hosting its 9th Annual Veterans Resource Expo on Thursday, November 9 from 1 to 4 p.m. at CGCC’s Pecos campus. The event features a resource Expo with over 30 college and community groups serving veterans along with the display of the “In the Eye of the Soldier” World War II exhibit courtesy of CGCC, the City of Chandler, and the East Valley Jewish Community Center.

The extraordinary exhibit features scanned photos taken by World War II Army veterans Emmett Sturgill and Donald Ornitz in April of 1945. The photos display the heroism of U.S. soldiers as well as the realities and experiences they faced when U.S. forces liberated more than 20,000 individuals from the concentration camps near Linz, Austria.

“We are so excited to host the “In the Eye of the Soldier” exhibit at this year’s CGCC Veterans Expo,” said LaTasha Kirksey, Veterans Services Coordinator at CGCC. “This unique exhibit allows guests the opportunity to view important pieces of history and learn about what soldiers endured during World War II.”

While at the event, veterans and their families can network with local businesses about job opportunities and learn about veteran resources and services offered by CGCC and community groups. The event is also an opportunity for non-veterans, in advance of Veterans Day, to honor those who have sacrificed to serve our country. 

"The Veterans Expo allows us to showcase college and community resources that may help our veteran students be more successful, and gives us an opportunity to offer our heartfelt thanks to CGCC's more than 500 student veterans in the week leading up to Veterans Day," said Kirksey. 

Exhibitors from a variety of governmental and community organizations will be on-site to provide information about their health and wellness, education and job resources. Organizations include: ASU Veterans Upward Bound; Arizona DES Veteran’s Workforce Services; Army NG Transition Assistance; CGCC Student Veterans Organization; Arizona Department of Labor; Disabled American Vets (DAV) Ch 8; East Valley Veterans Education Center; Fleet Reserve Assoc. Branch 163; Phoenix Fourblock; Homes for Heroes; Social Security Office; The Veterans Directory; VA Health Care: Transition & Care Management; VA Health: VA Eligibility, HR, My Healthy Vet, Women's and OEF, suicide & homeless; VA Vets Success and the VA Mesa Vet Center. Employers such as the Arizona State Prison, Home Depot and Chandler Police Department will also have an on-site presence.

The 9th Annual Veterans Expo will be held inside the Agave Building Community Room at the Pecos Campus located at 2626 E. Pecos Rd. from 1 to 4 p.m. The event is free and open to the public, particularly student and local veterans. Complimentary refreshments will be served. 

CGCC Celebrates 25th Anniversary

It’s been 25 years since Chandler-Gilbert Community College opened its doors to East Valley students. Since then, CGCC has grown to serving educational needs of over 19,000 students at four locations in the Southeast Valley of the Phoenix metropolitan area - the Pecos Campus in Chandler, the Williams Campus in Mesa, the Sun Lakes Center in Sun Lakes and at the Communiversity in Queen Creek.

Students and faculty gathered on October 19 to celebrate the milestone anniversary with a special event at the Williams Campus. Attendees enjoyed free food, music and games. The event wrapped up with an all campus photo commemorating CGCC’s 25 years of service.
“We are so grateful to our Student Activities Board who planned this wonderful event to celebrate CGCC’s silver anniversary,” said Kim Kocak, Williams Campus Student Life Coordinator. “It was awesome to see the CGCC community come together to celebrate CGCC’s commitment to serving the educational needs of students over the past 25 years.”

In addition to the on-campus event, CGCC faculty and staff celebrated the 25th anniversary of CGCC’s initial accreditation with a scholarship fundraiser event on October 12. The event raised over $16,000 for student scholarships. Community leaders and business partners came together with early CGCC employees--many now retired--to recognize those who were instrumental in the formative years of the College. Highlights of the evening included presentations by Maricopa County Community College District Chancellor Maria Harper-Marinick, former Chandler Mayor Jerry Brooks, community activist Sue Sossaman, and CGCC President Emerita Maria Hesse. The audience of 200 enjoyed inspiring musical performances by CGCC students and faculty.

The 25th Anniversary celebration will continue at the Holiday Breakfast on December 15. After we eat all employees are invited to see a special presentation by past CGCC President Maria Hesse and to join in a group photo on the lawn south of Ironwood Hall. Additional information on this event will be provided in email announcements later in the fall semester.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Celebrate Native American Heritage Month at CGCC

In celebration of Native American Heritage Month, Chandler-Gilbert Community College (CGCC) will be hosting the annual kickoff on Wednesday, November 1 from 12:15 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. at the Student Pavilion at CGCC’s Pecos Campus. The event will feature Master of Ceremony Moonie, live dance performance by Indigenous Enterprise, poetry by Roanna Shebala, music by Rae Scott and authentic fry bread by Yellowman Fry Bread.

The festival is free are open to the public and sponsored by the Vice President of Student Affairs, CGCC Student Life and Leadership, Co-Curricular Programs, and Maricopa Community Colleges District American Indian Early Outreach Office.

November is national Native American Heritage Month, and is a time to celebrate rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and to acknowledge the important contributions of Native people.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

CGCC Welcomes Heard Museum Curator to Pecos Campus

Interested in learning more about Native American history in Arizona? Join CGCC and Marcus Monenerkit of the Heard Museum on Monday, October 23 in the Agave Room at the Pecos Campus for an intimate look at Native American heritage and culture. Marcus is the Director of Community Engagement for the Heard Museum and an expert in Native American art and history. Some of the exhibits he has curated for the Heard Museum include: Beautiful Games: American Indian Sport and Art, American Indian Codetalkers, N. Scott Momaday: Poems and Paintings, Stars and Stripes in Native American Art, and Sole Stories: American Indian Footwear.

Marcus will available for the following timeslots on October 23:

Session 1: 8:30 - 9:45 a.m.

Session 2: 10:00 - 11:15 a.m.

Session 3: 11:30 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

Session 1 & 3: Managing Change- American Indian Sport Exhibition.

Examine the educational benefits of creating museum sport exhibitions.

This session will take participants through a catalog of exhibition photos and anecdotes connected to the Heard Museum’s exhibition: Beautiful Games: American Indian Sport and Art. The story is guided by 15 years of research focused on the goals of exhibition pedagogy, art education, and alternative models for resource stewardship.

Session 2: Natural Collaboration- Why, Who, and How.

Participatory session that seeks answers to questions about the best practices for meaningful and purposeful collaboration. Session examines Native

Pragmatism. Introduced by Scott Pratt, U of Oregon. Native Pragmatism is a look at the origins of the most American philosophy and the American Indian connection to its framework of community, interaction, pluralism, and growth.

About Marcus Monenerkit

Marcus has worked in the museum field for 19 years. His career began at the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution. He has been at the Heard Museum since 1998. Presently, he is the Director of Community Engagement for the Heard Museum. His formal education includes a Bachelor degree in Anthropology from Wichita State University, and a Master of Nonprofit Studies from Arizona State University. His goals are to continue to strive for knowledge using a multidisciplinary approach, and define the importance of art to both sociological theory and practice.

What is the Heard Museum?

Heard Museum – Incorporated in 1929, the museum’s mission is to be the world’s preeminent museum for the presentation, interpretation and advancement of American Indian art, emphasizing its intersection with broader artistic and cultural themes.

Since its founding in 1929, the Heard Museum has grown in size and stature to become recognized internationally for the quality of its collections, world-class exhibitions, educational programming and its Dedicated to the advancement of American Indian art, the Heard presents stories of American Indian people from a community perspective, as well as exhibitions that showcase the individual work and beauty of traditional and contemporary art.

The Heard Museum sets the standard for collaborating with American Indian artists and tribal communities to provide visitors with a distinctive perspective about the art of Native people, especially those from the Southwest.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

25th Anniversary Celebration

Celebrate CGCC’s silver anniversary during a special event on October 19 in honor of 25 years of academic service. The event will be held at the Williams Campus on the lawn in front of Engel Hall from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and will feature complimentary food from Some Burros, live music from DJ Iceman, games and an ALL campus photo at 11:30 a.m. The event is sponsored by the Student Advisory Board and is free for attendees. We hope you can make it and celebrate this wonderful milestone with us! See you there.