I am hopeful that you are all preparing to enjoy the upcoming holiday season as well as some well needed rest and relaxation. Last December, my message shared with you some of the challenges facing community colleges generally and MCC specifically. Of particular interest, I noted that of every 100 Michigan ninth graders, only 18 will graduate within six years of the time that they matriculate or enter college. Another statistic noted was that 50 percent of all jobs in the nation to be created by the year 2025 are “middle skilled” positions. The takeaways from these statistics were as follows:
- Community colleges have a mandate to support the education of our young people
- At least half of the jobs created in the foreseeable future will require at least some college.
- To remain competitive, we all must focus on assuring that our students and workforce are educated, trained and competitive.
Financial Aid Announcement
In addition to handling payments, parking passes and class information, the Welcome Center will now be handling most walk-in financial aid inquiries, including FAFSA, submitting documents, and other items. In a continuing effort to provide “one-stop” service to our students, the Welcome Center staff will now be your first stop for most financial aid questions. We hope this change will reduce the time students spend waiting in line and the number of separate offices that need to be visited. This will also allow staff to quickly identify those students with complex questions needing more in depth information. To better facilitate student needs, the Financial Aid Services Office (Room 106) will be able to offer more personalized, one to one service on complex issues such as work-study, veteran affairs and other matters. We are excited to be able to provide a more streamlined experience to our students and look forward to this new Student Service enhancement.
International Programs Notes
Muskegon Community College students and faculty will travel to Stuttgart, Germany in May 2011 -- giving an opportunity for students and staff to participate in a bi-lateral exchange program with its sister college, Kaufmannische Schule Stuttgart-Nord (KSN) in Stuttgart. Faculty and students must apply by the December 17 deadline. For more information visit the MCC website.
Global Awareness Festival to focus on Europe
The Global Awareness Festival at Muskegon Community College is a week-long event bringing the world a little closer to Muskegon. It includes lectures, discussions, a film festival, ethnic foods, an information fair, global entertainment, artifact displays, 200 flags, and much more! On Tuesday, February 8 our Science and Technology Seminar will feature Steve Warner, CEO of Scandia Wind Offshore. His topic will be “Wind Power in Europe and West Michigan and he will speak in the Blue and Gold Room from 6:00 – 9:00pm. On Wednesday, February 9 our Keynote Speaker will be Michael Soimar, President L-3 Combat Propulsion Systems and a native of Rumania; He will speak in Room 1100 at 7:00pm. We will also have an Information Fair that day which will feature booths highlighting international opportunities for students to study and work abroad as well as cultural differences around the world. The fair will take place in Collegiate Hall from 9:00am – 1:00pm. So, come enjoy, learn, and experience another neighborhood of our global village. For more information visit the MCC website or contact: Katherine Tosa by phone at x376 or email@example.com.
We look forward to your participation in Muskegon Community College’s Global Awareness Festival!
Happy Holidays to everyone at Muskegon Community College. As we approach the end of the year, it’s an opportunity to reflect on our accomplishments, but more importantly to look towards the future. To that end, I’m excited to report that Technology Strategic Planning has begun at MCC. The timing is good: because MCC’s Master Plan and Institutional Strategic Plan were recently submitted to the Board of Trustees for their review, this allows the Technology Strategic Plan to be developed so that it may align with the overarching goals of the college.
Inclement Weather Reminders
A reminder to staff and faculty that with the increased likelihood of inclement weather over the winter season you can be alerted to the status of the campus in a number of ways. The MCC website will always have any cancellations or delays noted. In addition you can request text or email updates for all public safety matters through Rave, MCC's emergency alert system. Notice to the media will also be given to local radio and TV stations.
2011 Mileage Rates Released
The IRS has announced that the business standard mileage rate for transportation expenses paid or incurred beginning January 1, 2011, will be 51 cents per mile, up from the 50 cents-per-mile rate in effect during 2010.
The mileage rate may be used to compute the deductible cost of operating a passenger car (also vans, pickups, or panel trucks) for business purposes. It may also be used by employers that elect to use the "cents-per-mile" valuation method for purposes of determining the amount that needs to be imputed to an employee's income for personal use of certain company-owned or leased nonluxury vehicles (see The Payroll SourceŽ, p. 3-22).
In addition, the 2011 standard rate for miles driven for medical or moving purposes will increase to 19 cents per mile, up from the 16.5 cents-per-mile rate in effect during 2010.
Finally, the standard mileage rate for operating a passenger car for charitable purposes, which is set by law, will stay at 14 cents per mile in 2011.
Each month the Records office is raising FERPA awareness by submitting a FERPA True/False Question to Campus Connections. The answer, and next month's question will appear in next month’s issue.
December 2010 question
“Education Records” include only those records contained in a student permanent file. True or false?
MCC Hosts Donor Appreciation Dinner
Forty-five donors who contributed $100 or more last fiscal year attended the Donor Appreciation Dinner on November 10, which included presentations on the impact of their donations.
Final 2010 United Way campaign update
MCC is proud to support United Way of the Lakeshore in their effort to promote education, income and health in our community.
We need your help! Currently only 31% of MCC staff have pledged, compromising 65% of the campaign amount. The United Way campaign wraps by the end of the year.
The current state of the campaign means that Aaron Hilliard, Director of Human Resources, will get off the hook on his promise to dance to the song of the employees choice during half time of an upcoming Jayhawks basketball game. Let's reach that 90% mark and make him follow through!
If you need that extra convincing about why you should donate to the United Way check out their new campaign video on the United Way of the Lakeshore website.
For more information regarding our campaign, donating and getting involved - contact Erin Patrick at x614.
Let's make that goal and see Aaron's moves as a Jayhawk!
Harryman to Perform A Christmas Carol
The Frauenthal Theater will come alive with the Christmas spirit with two special Frauenthal 80th Birthday performances of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” on December 17 & 18, 2010.
This brilliant holiday story, filled with humor and pathos, spirits and sinners, Scrooge, Bob Cratchit, and more, will be performed by former Frauenthal managing director, Muskegon Community College instructor and professional actor, Tom Harryman. Adapting the story into a one-man performance, Harryman will bring to life this wonderful world and the colorful characters created by Dickens.
The production was originally directed by the MCC Center for Theater Director, Sheila Kulp Wahamaki with original designs by Richard Oman, Jeanette Wahr, Brian Goodman, and Harryman. A perfect complement to the holiday season, special intimate staging has been arranged to complete this very theatrical story-theatre style production.
Admission is $12.
Former MCC instructor pens book
Retired faculty, Dr. Susan Meeuwenberg, has written a book Failing Retirement 101: Finding a Passion. The book chronicles the author's desperate need for a passion following her retirement. Failing Retirement 101 is full of anecdotes and research, as Meeuwenberg struggles in her self-exploration to find the unique passion that will help her reinvent her life.
The book is currently available at amazon.com for $9.99.
Toys For Tots
Teachers of Tomorrow’s Students Organization is collecting toys for ages 0-3 years and winter hats and mittens for children ages 0-3 years. You can drop of toys through December 17th in room 342.
Institute for Healing Racism
Make it a New Year's Resolution to take your next step on the journey to healing racism. The Institute for Healing Racism at MCC presents both a Basic Institute, entitled "A Conversation on Race" and Institute II, "The Next Step" which focuses primarily on institutional racism.
Institute I Upcoming Dates
January 4 & 11 (Consecutive Tuesdays) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
January 18 & 19 (Tuesday & Wednesday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
February 1 & 2 (Tuesday & Wednesday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
February 15 & 22 (Consecutive Tuesdays) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
March 7 & 8, 14 & 15 (Two Consecutive Mondays & Tuesdays) 5 p.m.—9:30 p.m.
March 15 & 16 (Tuesday & Wednesday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
Institute II Upcoming Dates
January 13 & 20 (Consecutive Thursdays) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
January 25 & 26 (Tuesday & Wednesday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
February 8 & 9 (Tuesday & Wednesday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
February 23 & 24 (Wednesday & Thursday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
March 1 & 2 (Tuesday & Wednesday) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
March 22 & 29 (Consecutive Tuesdays) 8 a.m.—4:30 p.m.
For more information, or to sign up, call Larry Lundquist at x536 or visit the IFHR website at www.muskegoncc.edu/ifhr.
Eight Tips to Stay Fit and
Trim Over the Holidays
1. Stay on a regular workout schedule. This will give you the extra energy
needed to keep up with the hustle and bustle of the holidays; plus exercise is
a great stress reliever.
2. Be realistic. Don’t try to lose pounds over the holidays. Try to maintain
your current weight instead. Don’t try any new diet plans, this will only bring
on added frustration and stress.
3. Concentrate on the people not the food. Engage in good conversation
“away” from the food. You are less likely to nibble if you keep your distance
from the food table.
4.Take a brisk walk after a holiday meal. The fresh air is great for you
besides burning some of the calories you have just consumed.
5. Eat something healthy before going to a party. You can still enjoy what you
love but you are less likely to over indulge.
6. Look over the buffet table before you grab a plate. Try to spot the healthier
foods and go for those first.
7. Choose a smaller plate over the larger ones. One or two bites of your
favorite foods will still satisfy your taste buds. Moderation is the key over the
8. “Savor the Flavor”. Take the time to chew your food completely. You will
experience the wonderful flavor of the meal or dishes and get full faster than
if you eat to quickly.
Brought to you by: Margaret Siegel, Fitness Professional with The Rains Group
Don't go Postal! Reminders from the Mail Room
Please remember that the mailroom is happy to help out with personal mail, time permitting. Top priority will always be the college’s official mail. This is a business and the mailroom is here to make that business functional. Don't hesitate to call John Skidmore at 429 for any information regarding mailing and parcel services at MCC.
President's Message continued
In response, I asked you to continue and to stay engaged in community organizations such as K12 schools, church, government or related organizations. I also asked that you work hard and work smart to help serve our students and community. You have done exactly that. For example:
I was very pleased to see this level of participation at MCC. It demonstrates that you are willing to give your time and energy to help our students not become a mere statistic, but to succeed in demanding and challenging times. It makes me very proud to serve as your president.
- The college has completed a draft 2010-2015 Strategic Plan, including a comprehensive Facilities Master Plan. Approximately one quarter of all full time employees were involved in this process, as were community members, trustees, and students. These plans will help the College meet the needs of a 21st century economy
- Twenty-five new programs have been created since mid-2009. These include numerous articulations with our four-year partners, the first new joint programs with Western Michigan University since the founding of the Stevenson Center, and the first new onsite four-year program with Grand Valley State University since the founding of the Stevenson Center.
- Nearly half of all full time MCC employees attended the rollout of Achieving the Dream. This student success centered process has been launched at less than 10 percent of the nation’s community colleges.
Finally, please let me know how I may be of service to you by contacting my office at x303 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy the holidays and the best to you and your families.
Dale Nesbary, Ph.D.
CIO Message continued
Technology Strategic Planning is more than just a planning effort for the OIT department, but rather focuses on technology overall at our college. The emphasis lies more in what the college wants to accomplish and what problems to solve, rather than any specific technology or solution. Because of this, it is not necessary to have a strong technical background in order to be involved in the process. Presently, the core technology planning team consists of faculty and staff from college administration and the Information Technology Council.
The core technology planning team will begin by reviewing trends in higher education. For example, at a national level, college enrollments are on the rise and expected to continue to climb for the next several years. Conversely, the number of high school graduates in Michigan will gradually decline over a similar time period. The traits of millennial students will be compared to those of adult learners, along with their strengths and the challenges they face. Current technology trends will be reviewed - the Internet is no longer a collection of static web pages, but rather a place where people actively communicate and connect with each other, not only to receive information and content, but create it as well. Future trends in technology will also be examined, such as mobile computing, open content, eBooks, augmented reality, and gesture based computing. Institutional trends will also be reviewed from both the Campus Computing Project and Society for College and University Planning.
Over the next several weeks, the core technology planning team will participate in three sets of meetings to work through the Technology Strategic Planning process. Between each of these sessions, the team has been charged with reaching out to their constituent groups to provide information and get feedback. This will allow for many people to provide input into the process. Once complete, this plan will help to guide efforts with technology for the next three years.
There are many expectations for the Technology Strategic Plan. My personal expectation is that it will help the OIT department achieve maximum effectiveness in delivering solutions to our students, faculty, and staff. I want everything we do to matter, and I thank each of you in advance who would participate in helping us do so.
Chief Information Officer
Muskegon Community College