MAY 2011

President's Message


Congratulations! MCC’s recently held commencement marked the “end” of the academic year, and it was a wonderful celebration of the accomplishments of our students. With the number of graduates up 35% over last year, I know everyone at MCC has been doing their part to help our students succeed. I also want to take a moment to thank all of those who went above and beyond in the planning and execution of this year’s commencement, particularly with the change in venue and the opportunity we had to have Governor Rick Snyder participate in our ceremony. It certainly was a memorable day for our graduates to celebrate with their friends and families.

The Governor’s visit and message to the MCC community was thought provoking and insightful into the future environment for community colleges in the state of Michigan. Clearly we have an important role to play, as outlined by the Governor. It is additionally clear that in spite of this role, community colleges are part of the wider debate in the state taking place regarding funding levels for the various parts of our educational system.

Read More

back to top

Achieving the Dream

As part of a grant from the Kresge Foundation, MCC receives guidance from two Achieving the Dream coaches, Dr. Linda Watkins and Dr. Lynda Villanueva. They made their second visit to campus April 25 and 26, when they met with the Achieving the Dream core team, several members of the Board of Trustees, the President, and members of the First Year Experience and Developmental Education Strategy teams. Drs. Watkins and Villanueva were pleased with the clear message they heard, that the MCC community wants all students to reach their goals.

For more information about Achieving the Dream at MCC visit Or you can visit the national Achieving the Dream website at

back to top

CCSSE Surveys Are Completed!

Thank you to everyone who helped in the college’s first administration of the Community College Survey of Student Engagement! More than 700 students completed the survey, which will give us rich information on our students’ experiences in and out of the classroom. After the results are available, the Achieving the Dream team members will scrutinize them for areas of highest and lowest student engagement and areas to consider for interventions.

Read More

back to top

German Exchange Program 15th Anniversary

MCC will provide another opportunity for students and staff to participate in an exchange program with its sister college, Kaufmännische Schule Stuttgart-Nord (KSN) in Stuttgart, Germany. This MCC/KSN exchange program has been building lasting friendships and offering insight into our different cultures and business practices for over 15 years. The exchange includes visits to cultural and historical sites as well as local businesses such as Daimler, Porsche, and Ritter Sport. Each participant is hosted by a German student or faculty member of the Kaufmännische Schule Stuttgart-Nord. In June, the MCC community will be reciprocally hosting students and faculty from Germany. If you know a student looking for an experience to last a lifetime encourage them to consider next year's trip. More at the International Programs website.

back to top


Everyone is familiar with stress. We experience it in varying forms and degrees every day. In small doses, stress can actually be beneficial to us. It is only when the stress becomes too great, affecting our physical or mental functioning, that it becomes a problem.

In small doses, stressors can help give us increased energy and alertness. This type of stress is good and can even increase focus on the problem at hand.

Read More

back to top

Keep Books Safe

Textbooks, and other books required for class at MCC, are a large investment for our students. In spite of this, we often get reports of textbooks going missing due to student neglect, or theft. Please encourage your students to never leave their books unattended and to treat them gently. They'll be glad they did when it comes to Book Buyback Days!.

As always, report all crimes and suspicious activities to x545 or (231) 557-5648.

back to top

Make Earth Day Everyday - Twenty Things Anyone Can Do

1. Do not buy bottled water. There are less health restrictions on it than tap water. Carry your own refillable container. In 2006, more than 17 million barrels of oil, not including the oil needed for transportation, was used to produce bottled water, releasing 2.5 million tons of carbon dioxide, a major global warming gas. 1,500 bottles per second end up in the garbage. Recycle the bottles. Bottled water’s multi-billion dollar industry is privatizing water supplies worldwide. Keep water as a public right. See

Read More

back to top

Bowled Over!

A huge "Thank You" to all who participated in the Art and Design club’s empty bowls project. The club created and glazed over 60 bowls, sold around 40, and are going to be able to give Love INC of Muskegon over $850 dollars.

back to top


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.

April 2011 question

A school does not have to send education records to another school in which a student seeks or intends to enroll if the student has an outstanding balance to the current institution. True or False?

True: While the institution must provide access to the student, it does not need to do so to a third party under these circumstances.

May 2011 question

A student has the right to inspect and review an essay submitted by the student, even if the teacher does not intend to return it to the student or to permanently maintain it. True or False?

back to top

Merch Mention

If you have a need for MCC pencils with a musical twist, see Amy James in Room 1115. For .25 each you buy up to 200 of them. If you have ever have any merchandise questions please do not hesitate to call Amy James at x547.

back to top

Don't go Postal! Reminders from the Mail Room

All incoming merchandise that is purchased for college use should have a requisition already in the Datatel system prior to arriving to the mailroom. If for some reason there is no requisition it will take longer to process and will not arrive to its destination in an orderly manner. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to call the mail room at x429.

back to top

Mayfest Volunteers Needed

MCC is hosting the 22nd Annual Mayfest Saturday, May 21 from 10:00am - 4pm. We are looking forward to a great event of family fun on May 21 showing off the MCC campus and many of our wonderful programs to the community. Many departments/clubs etc have signed up to host displays etc to this end. Thanks!

If you aren’t already engaged in one of these efforts, we still need a lot of individual volunteers to help with set up, chaperoning inflatables, personing the information tent, emcee, be floaters, and help with clean up. If you are available that day from 7:00-10:00, 10:00-1:00, or from 1:00-4:30, please respond to this email and let us know when you might be able to help.

back to top

MCC Golf Outing Teams

It’s time to dust off your golf game! We encourage you to join us on Friday, June 3 as we host the Shoot for the Stars golf outing. Your support will help fund renovations to the Carr-Fles Planetarium–the only free planetarium in West Michigan. In addition to the prizes for longest drive and other contests, we are offering a special prize that only MCC department teams can win—and you don’t even need to know how to golf to win! The Foundation for Muskegon Community College Jayhawk Spirit Award will be earned by the MCC foursome that exhibits the greatest amount of MCC pride and enthusiasm! The winning team will be selected based on how well their golf garb reflects MCC colors, logos, and/or the Shoot for the Stars theme. Contact Tina Dee or Dan Rinsema-Sybenga if you have any questions, or would like to sign up.

back to top

Bike to Work Week

With gas prices spiking there's never been a better time to participate in Bike to Work Week. An event promoted by Access Healthy, the Employer's Association, and the Muskegon Area Chamber of Commerce, this initiative seeks to be active in the community by biking to work and living a healthier lifestyle.This year Bike to Work Week will take place Monday, May 16-Friday, May 20. Register at to be eligible for valuable prizes, to find park & ride locations for your area, access safety information, and find maps and suggested routes.

back to top


OCR Dashboard

The Office of Community Relations posts our monthly dashboard report on the common drive each month. If you ever wonder what we’re working on, you can check it out at S:\Community Relations\OCR Dashboard and CQI Plan. Feedback and suggestions are always encouraged to!

back to top


CIO Message

At the end of last year, Muskegon Community College began a technology strategic planning process to complement MCC’s Institutional Strategic Plan. The technology strategic plan is meant to be cross-functional; that is, not limited to the OIT department, but rather focused on technology as a whole at the college. The focus is broad based and not limited to specific technologies or products. People from many different areas have been encouraged to participate. Because of the emphasis on solving problems rather than specific technology, this allows for a diverse group to provide input.

Read More

back to top

President's Message continued

First, on the role of community colleges we agree wholeheartedly that community colleges are key for people of all ages to access higher education, and earn a degree. The knowledge and skills gained through community colleges are critical to improving the quality of the state’s workforce. Further, we agree that education will enable our young people to compete and innovate in tomorrow’s global knowledge-based economy, which is critical for the re-invention Michigan is currently undergoing.

Second, concerning the fiscal impact of the current budget discussions on MCC. As stated in my April message, the Governor originally asked the legislature not to reduce 2012 community college funding levels. In spite of this, legislative committees considered reductions of up to 15 percent, or $1.2 million in the case of MCC. The final determination of this budget question likely won’t be entirely clear until the State House, State Senate, and the governor sign the budget bill, which is hoped to take place before June 1. Last week the State House passed a budget bill which pegged cuts to community colleges at 15%.

Again, I ask that all of those interested in supporting MCC’s ability to provide excellent services contact your elected state officials to share with them why you think they need to continue to fund the college and what impact a reduction would have on you. Here are examples of what a 15 percent reduction in state funding could potentially mean to MCC:
  • 400 full student tuition/fee scholarships lost, or
  • 17 full time faculty positions lost, or
  • Elimination of MCC’s entire women’s and men’s athletic programs
So, as we head into the summer be aware that we’ll be continuing to monitor these developments, and all others, that impact MCC’s ability to carry out our mission of meeting individual, community and global needs. I trust that all of us will do our best to also meet this mission in our summer activities, but that we’ll also take the time to recharge and enjoy our beautiful corner of West Michigan. And as always, strive for excellence and please feel free to contact me at, via phone at 231-777-0303, or stop by my office at room 400, Main Building on campus.

Best regards,

Dale Nesbary, Ph.D.

back to top
resume e-news

CCSSE Surveys cont'd

The following MCC faculty and staff administered the surveys in classrooms:

Mike Alstrom
Sally Birkam
Gretchen Cline
Kelley Conrad
Eli Fox
Elena Garcia
Dave Kiley
Jenny Klingenberg
Kathy Krentz
J.B. Meeuwenberg
Anne Meilof
Papa N’Jai
Char Parker
Jean Roberts
Cathy Rusco
Sheila Wahamaki

The following instructors’ classes were randomly selected for surveys, and they all gave up class time for survey administration:

Zawdie Abiade
Nikki Alford-Magers
Sally Birkam
John Boynton
Harry Brown
Mark Brunger
Gretchen Cline
Dan Collison
Jeanne Cooper-Kuiper
Robert Eich
Elena Garcia
Dean Gentel
Jessica Graf
Tom Groner
Bev Hair
Deb Howell
Rick Hudson
Dave Kiley
Jim Landes
Paul Langereis
Nathan Leatherman
Bonnie Lipan
Randy Lunsford
Julie Lupo
Tom Martin
Dan Meyers
Greg Miller
Manuela Nace
Gary Nonnemacher
Tim Norris
Char Parker
Fred Reinecke
Conor Roddy
Dan Rypma
Vincent Skutnik
Angela Spaniolo-DePouw
Jeff Stipes
Dave Stradal
Cathy Strate
Thomas Tisue
Bill Tokarz
Kathy Tosa
Kurt Troutman
Jon Truax
Clark Twining
Roger Vajda
Mike Vallie
Larry Visconti
Cliffton Young

So thanks again for the cooperation from all areas of the campus, and look for the results to appear sometime this summer!


Anne Meilof, CCSSE Survey Coordinator
Your Achieving the Dream Team Members

back to top
resume e-news

Stress cont'd

As the level of pressure gets too great, stress eventually surpasses our ability to cope with it in a positive way. At this point, it is important to find positive and productive ways to deal with the stress and, more importantly, to address the person or situation that is causing the stress.

Everyone reacts to stress differently. Each of us has a different level of pressure and anxiety we can handle without a negative outcome. Only you can assess your level of tolerance to stressful situations. The best treatment for stress is to prevent getting into situations that are likely to overwhelm your ability to cope. However, this is not always possible because the stressors may often come from outside sources that are beyond your control.

Initial symptoms of stress usually affect inner emotions including feelings of:
• Anxiousness
• Nervousness
• Distraction
• Excessive worry
• Internal pressure

Continual increased stress may cause more severe physical effects:
• Excessive Fatigue
• Depression
• Headaches
• Nausea and vomiting
• Chest pain or pressure
• Heart racing
• Dizziness or flushing
• Hyperventilation or choking sensation

In most cases, these symptoms are very minor and don’t last very long. If they become more severe or increase in frequency and severity, medical help should be sought. The sooner you begin the process of treatment, the easier it will be and the quicker you will be back to your normal state.

• Set realistic goals and limits for yourself. Put things into perspective and try not to get upset about insignificant or relatively unimportant matters.
• Take stress, time management, or anger management classes.
• Take time for yourself to relax your body.
• Maintain a positive outlook.
• Reward yourself for accomplishments.
• The key is to seek help early and be an active partner in your care and recovery. Just worrying about your problems will only make them worse. Call on your friends, family, and doctor to help you return to a full and productive lifestyle.

Ways to relax your body:
Physical activity. Exercise that increases your heart rate, such as walking, running, bicycling, or swimming-is especially useful for counteracting the harmful effects of stress. Stretching is also a good way to relieve muscle tension.

Doing something you enjoy. A meaningful activity helps relieve tension. Hobbies, creative activities, or playing with and caring for pets are great ways to help you relax. Although you may feel that you are too busy, making time to do something you like is important and can make you more productive in other areas of your life.

Brought to you by Gallagher Benefit Services

back to top
resume e-news

Make Earth Day Everyday

2. Do not accept stores’ plastic bags. Carry your own fabric bags. Making plastic bags requires the energy of 4 million barrels of oil a year. 100,000 birds and marine animals die each year from eating plastic. Plastic bags have been banned in San Francisco 2007, Los Angeles 2010, & many other places including Bombay 2001, China, and Bangladesh 2002. They were found to be the main reason for the latter’s 1988 and 1998 floods, submerging 2/3’s of the country. Bags choked the drainage systems. Plastic bags are not cost effective to be recycled. So few are recycled despite claims.

3. When eating in a restaurant, bring your own leftover container, which helps you eat less, makes two meals out of one, plus saves using the restaurants’ Styrofoam or plastic containers each time. 27% of all U.S. food produced each year is thrown away, 48 million tons, 163 lbs. for each person, enough to feed 49 million people.

4. Recycle waste. Put non-meat, non-dairy food scraps in your garden, compost pile or compost bin. Separate waste into bags of clear glass, colored glass, (lightly rinse out & take caps off), aluminum, tin cans, (rinse out & take labels off), plastic, newspapers, magazines, phone books, & cardboard. Recycling one glass bottle saves enough energy to light a traditional light bulb for four hours. Do curbside recycling, or take waste to the free, drop-off center. Recycling info: or Community Recycling Services,1970 Port City Blvd., Muskegon, MI 231-773-8407

5. Change incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent light bulbs. CFL bulbs use 75% less energy and last ten times longer. CFL bulbs contain mercury and require careful disposal. Do not put them in the trash. Home Depot takes burned out CFL bulbs.

6. “Think before you print.” Save to a flash drive or email to yourself. Operate paperless when possible. Each year Americans use about 600 lbs. of paper per person, or 100 million trees.

7. Check labels. Buy and use recycled paper for printing, toilet tissue, facial tissue, paper towels, etc. About 27 million trees are used each year for paper towels alone. Use cloth when possible. Ask stores to carry recycled paper products.

8. Turn off lights and machines when not in use. Set your computer screen to sleep mode when not in use, rather than a screen saver. Doing so can save $25-$75 per desktop a year. Laptops use 90% less energy than desktops with rechargeable batteries and other energy saving features.

9. Take your name off junk and catalog mailing lists. Each person receives an estimated 34 lbs. of junk mail a year. Directions to stop junk mail:

10. Buy local foods. Muskegon Farmer’s Market, 700 Yuba, 722-3251, May-December Tues, Thurs, Sat. 6 am – 3 pm; Sweetwater Local Foods Market at Hackley Health at the Lakes, 6401 Prairie Street, ½ mile south of the Lakes Mall, exit US 31 at Pontaluna Rd., 231-893-3937. Summer/fall in parking lot, winter in lobby every other weekend. Visit markets in Muskegon Heights, Grand Haven, and other cities as well.

11. Do not eat fast food or grocery store meat and poultry from CAFOs, Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations. The United Nations states, the meat industry generates more greenhouse gases than all the cars and trucks combined. See the film “Food, Inc.,” and

12. Do not idle your car engine over one minute, unless at a light. Idling wastes gas, estimated at 2 billion gallons a year in the U.S. It pollutes the atmosphere with unhealthy emissions. Idling is illegal in 42 states and Europe. Avoid drive-through businesses with long idling. Also, the weight of a full tank of gas gives less efficient gas mileage. Fill up when necessary.

13. Support local, state and national businesses.

14. Recycle clean Styrofoam packaging material, such as blocks and peanuts, at NuPac Solutions, Inc., 2850 Lincoln, across from Cannon Foundry, Norton Shores, 231-755-1662. No food containers, even washed. M-Th 7 am-3 pm, F 7am-2 pm

15. Do not throw cigarette butts out car windows, on the ground or in waterways. The butts contain many toxic chemicals which get into waterways, contaminating groundwater and drinking water. Land and marine animals can die from eating them. Several trillion butts are thrown away each year, the leading litter in the world.

16. Bring your own cup, plate and utensils to work to avoid using plastic and Styrofoam daily. Americans use 57 billion lbs. of plastic a year. Only 3% is recycled. Fourteen billion lbs. of trash are dumped in the oceans each year. More than 46,000 pieces of plastic waste are in every square mile of ocean, killing over 100,000 marine species a year.

17. Stop recreational balloon launches. Balloons and strings end up in lakes and waterways where birds and aquatic life ingest them and die.

18. Big shade trees outside a home can reduce the temperature inside by 10-20 degrees, saving about $200 a year in electricity.

19. Support political candidates who have a sustainable environmental agenda, and watch their actions. See “Project Vote Smart”

20. Buy juice in bulk and refill metal containers for children rather than juice boxes. Some juice boxes are very difficult to recycle.

Compiled by Darlene A. DeHudy, Muskegon Community College Librarian
Main source: Planet Hero! 365 Ways to Save the Earth by Lauren Wechsler Horn, 2009

back to top
resume e-news

CIO Message continued

After identifying the initial participants, the core technology strategic planning team met to examine and explore the issues facing the college today, including:
  • The current role of the technical environment across the college and in the classrooms;
  • The current state, use, and perceptions of technology tools and services at the college;
  • A future vision of the role of technology for all campus stakeholders;
  • A future vision of what the college must do to successfully make the transition to achieve the vision.
MCC’s Technology Strategic Plan and its implementation strategy are emerging from the following planning elements:
  1. Establishing a Technology Mission, Vision, and Values.
  2. Creating a “future state” vision of how the use of technology, in its broadest definition, and how it will become a strategic component of success in support of the college’s vision, mission, and goals.
  3. Analyzing the current technology environment and context in which the Technology Strategic Plan is being developed. This analysis includes developing a current technology state framework, planning assumptions, environmental review, focus groups and a SWOT/C (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats/Challenges) analysis.
  4. Developing goals and objectives, aligned with the college’s current vision, mission, and goals, to enable the college to advance toward its desired “future state” in accordance with the Technology Values, and transform this vision into reality.
  5. Establishing an implementation grid that will facilitate the execution of the Technology Strategic Plan.
Presently, the technology strategic plan is in draft form, and tactical objectives are in their ninth revision as input is collected from many different areas, including tactical planning participants identified in the planning process, Cabinet & Extended Cabinet, Department Chairs, and the Information Technology Council. I am confident that this level of participation, coupled with the dedication of those participating, will result in a technology strategic plan that will truly align with the college’s institutional goals and help us to achieve our shared vision for greater success.

On behalf of everyone in OIT, we look forward to continuing to serve you.

Mike Alstrom
Chief Information Officer
Muskegon Community College

back to top
resume e-news

In This Issue

 President's Message
 Achieving the Dream
 CCSSE Surveys
 German Exchange
Human Resources
Employee Information
 Keep Books Safe
 Earth Day Everyday
 Bowled Over
 Merch Mention
 Mail Reminder
Campus Activities
 Mayfest Volunteers
 MCC Golf Outing
 Bike to Work
 CPA Schedule
Campus Updates
 OCR Dashboard
 CIO Message
 May Birthdays

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

MCC Links

MCC Event Calendar
MCC News Stories
Strategic Plan
Achieving the Dream

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Creative & Performing Arts


47th Student Art & Design Exhibit
May 21- Sept 15 at 9:00 am To 4:00 pm


Jazz and Wind Ensembles
Saturday, May 14 7:00 pm
Olthoff Stage, Third St

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

MCC May Birthdays

Lois Smith - 3
Duane Rainbolt - 3
Pauline Keith - 10
Kimberly Vanderlinde - 10
Vilene Rodgers - 10
Adolfo Barreto - 11
Karen Wilson - 11
Debra Howell - 15
Nancy Maycroft - 19
Gretchen Cline - 20
Jay Zarowitz - 24
David Wiggins JR - 25
Elena Garcia - 29
Judith Walters - 29
Magnolia Knox - 31
MCC June Birthdays

Sally Birkam - 1
Julia N Perez - 1
Dale Nesbary - 2
Phillip Anderson - 8
Michael McManus - 9

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Campus Connections is published by the MCC Office of Community Relations the first Tuesday of each month. If you have an item you would like to share with the MCC employee community please email the information to communityrelations
by the last Tuesday noon of the month. For more information contact Tina Dee at 231-777-0660 or Dan Rinsema-Sybenga at 231-777-0569

- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Tell us what you think! Give us some feedback on Campus Connections by completing this short survey.