School of Business and Social Sciences
- College Lecturers in Business Studies Sean Bips and Chris Bottomley hosted a successful event, HRTM (Hospitality, Recreation, and Tourism Management) Connect, on March 10, 2022. The theme was “Spring into Hospitality.” In attendance were 55 guests representing Borgata, Hotels Unlimited, Six Flags, Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce, Chick-Fil-A, Laurita Winery, La Modina Restaurant, Merry Makers Caterers, Hard Rock, Mathis House B&B, Bubbakoos, and Manasquan River Golf Club. The event raised $125 for the Fulfill food pantry on campus. Students in this semester’s HRTM 212 class, Conferences, Conventions, and Special Events, had the opportunity to share their resumes with prospective employers. This event was presented in collaboration with BIC and Career Services.
- Chris Bottomley will attend the New Jersey Collegiate Business Administration Honor Society’s virtual induction ceremony on May 6, 2022. This honor society, established by the deans of the colleges of business at two- and four-year colleges within New Jersey, recognizes the very highest academic achievement of undergraduate students pursuing their studies in business. Only the top one percent of students at their respective collegiate institutions have been extended an invitation to join.
- Margaret Maghan, College Lecturer II in Social Work, helped the Social Sciences Club raise money for Ukraine by hosting a bake sale on March 22, 2022. Proceeds went directly to the Ukraine relief fund. Dr. Maghan also organized a basket distribution for Helping Hands on March 29, 2022. Helping Hands placed food baskets with granola bars and snacks for students around campus with the goal of increasing awareness for the on-campus food bank.
- Maghan will attend a virtual induction ceremony for the Psi Beta National Honor Society on April 28, 2022. She will also attend a virtual induction ceremony for the Social Work Honor Society on May 4, 2022.
- Patty Gianotti, College Lecturer II in the Alcohol Counseling Program, presented a two-day event, “Addictions Summit 2022: Integrated Approaches in Substance Use Disorder and Behavioral Health Treatment.” The event was held March 22 and 23, 2022, in conjunction with the Teen Arts Festival, which was hosted on the OCC campus by the Grunin Center. Dr. Gianotti provided supervised instruction and experiential workshops related to holistic treatment and prevention techniques to 1,100 Ocean County high school students. These techniques included a drum circle, a mindfulness labyrinth walk, arts and crafts therapy, and an introduction to crystal chakra bowl energy healing. The students, who were on campus for qualification to advance to the county level, commented on how effective the various workshops were in reducing their stress levels before and after performing.
- Jason Ghibesi, College Lecturer II in Political Science, was interviewed by reporter Jean Mikle from the Asbury Park Press about the significance of Ketanji Brown Jackson’s SCOTUS nomination. Mr. Ghibesi’s interview was included in an article published March 31, 2022. OCC student Kristi Rovegno was also featured in the article and shared her perspective as a student of political science on this historic nomination.
- OCC’s Governmental Affairs Institute sponsored a lecture by Professor Marny Requa, “The First Amendment & Free Speech: Protests and Politics on the Streets and Online,” on April 6, 2022. Professor Requa is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Criminal Justice, Anthropology, Sociology, and Human Rights at Georgian Court University. She is an active member of the New York City Bar’s International Human Rights Committee and author of a report covering freedom of expression and the global crackdown on civil society. The event was facilitated by Mr. Jason Ghibesi.
- With his psychology students, Mr. James Indelicato, College Lecturer II in Psychology, will be hosting a sock drive called “A Box for Socks.” The sock drive will be held in April and will have several strategically placed boxes in various buildings around campus. Through this community project, students will volunteer to help the homeless and earn extra credit while doing so.
- College Lecturer II in Accounting Stephanie Kroeger, College Lecturer II in Accounting and Business Jim Hadley, and Program Chair in Business Chris Bottomley, hosted an accounting symposium on April 21, 2022. The event included a variety of topics geared toward accounting students, including the new A.S. degree in Accounting, the new Accounting Club, transfer opportunities to New Jersey City University and Kean University, and membership in the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants (NJCPA).
School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
- Engineering College Lecturer II Pam Bogdan announced her paper, “Applying Engineering Techniques on Non-Traditional Real-World Problems,” has been accepted for presentation at the 2022 IEEE Integrated STEM Education conference. This paper is being co-authored with OCC engineering student John Verderosa. It is based on activities done in MNFG (now ENGR) 114, Principles of Quality Control in Manufacturing, in Fall 2021.
Ms. Bogdan announced that, as part of OCC’s EPA with NAVAIR, 350 Samsung TAB S2 tablets will be received by the College. The tablets will be used both in classrooms, and as part of roadshow programs with Ocean County K-12 students.
- OCC continues to develop and promote the new A.A.S. degree and Certificate of Completion in Artificial Intelligence that were launched in partnership with Intel in Fall 2021, based on its AI for Workforce Program. This Summer, OCC will offer an AI camp in coordination with the Grunin Center. The camp will introduce middle and high school students to the emerging field of artificial intelligence and its exciting applications, while exploring how AI is used in machine learning and neural networks. Through fun and immersive hands-on STEM activities, campers will have a chance to examine the impact AI has in the world and on our daily lives as well as how it may change the way jobs function in the future.
OCC is pleased to have been invited to join the AI Incubator Network (AIIN) created by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC). Being an AIIN member will allow the College to have access to curriculum, train-the-trainer courses, and professional development discussions led by AACC and our partners, Dell and Intel.
- The Dr. William J. Rickert Lecture Series for April continues with “Iterated maps: Self Similarity and Fractals” by Dr. Vandana Saini, College Lecturer II in Mathematics.
- Pam Bogdan authored an article, which was posted through The Michelson Institute for Intellectual Property, “And the Patent Goes to: The Dream Award for Every Engineer.”
- College Lecturer II in Mathematics Samuel Pinkava has been selected to present a poster at the 2022 National Conference of the American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges in Toronto, Canada. The poster is titled, “The Advantages and Disadvantages of Adaptive Online Homework.” After presenting the poster, Dr. Pinkava will complete the Project ACCCESS (Advancing Community College Careers: Education, Scholarship, and Service) fellowship program.
- College Lecturer II in Chemistry Scott Farrell and HOSA-future health professional students attended the New Jersey HOSA State Leadership conference, virtually, the weekend of March 19 and 20, 2022. Students competed in their individual events, and those who placed in the top three in their event will compete at HOSA’s International Leadership conference from June 22-25, 2022. Students Christa Rodriguez (medical spelling) and Danielle D’Allassandro (medical reading) will go on to compete at the international conference being held in Nashville, Tennessee.
- The Jersey Shore Junior Science Symposium (JSJSS) concluded its virtual competition with a PowerPoint presentation on March 25, 2022. Aside from announcing the winners, the program consisted of a recorded welcome address from me and presentations by Captain Eric Correll and Dr. Kerry Clark, both from the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Indian Head Division. The speakers emphasized the need for STEM students in Armed Forces Research and Development, as well as some incredible career opportunities for students pursuing their advanced degrees.
- The JSJSS competition collects and redacts any identifying information from the 56 papers submitted this year. After being reviewed multiple times by experts in the fields of the categories of competition, a committee reviews the statistical analysis and determines the top 10 to compete in a PowerPoint presentation; the next six compete in a poster presentation. As a virtual event, the students had to record their presentations for the final submission. The recordings were then distributed to the final judges, again experts in their fields, and the winners were chosen. The judges are a vast collection of military, environmental, and academic institution professionals who dedicate their time and expertise for this symposium year after year.
It is exciting and rewarding to see these students develop their critical thinking and creative expression as they explore their research topics, especially when they enter year after year. For the third year in a row, Ryan Park of Millburn High School took top honors for his project in the mathematics and computer science category with “Adversarial Neural Evolution for Variant Forecasting and Proactive Therapeutic Design.”
Also winning places to compete at the National 60th Junior Science and Humanities Symposium, held in person in Albuquerque, New Mexico, are, in second place, Sahasra Pokkunuri of Old Bridge High School; third, Saachi Kuthari of Millburn High School; fourth, Kannammai Pichappan of Bergen Academies; and fifth, Srijan Agarwal of Bergen Academies. The poster presenter winners are first, Kathy Zhang of Tenafly High School; second, Eric Wang of Millburn High School; and third, Mirika Jambudi of The Pingry School.
Altogether, the papers were submitted by 13 schools in our regional symposium: Bergen County Academies, Colonia High School, Fair Lawn High School, Marine Academy of Technology and Environmental Science, Millburn High School, Montgomery High School, Old Bridge High School, Princeton International School of Mathematics and Science, Summit High School, Tenafly High School, The Pingry School, and West Winsor-Plainsboro High School.
The JSJSS was able to include a virtual general poster session this year to allow other students to compete for prizes as well. The overall winner was William Hou of Montgomery High School.
OCC is honored to be the host of this prestigious organization and help students win monetary and other prizes for their baccalaureate programs through the sponsorship of the Department of Defense and many other organizations, including the Armed Forces Communication and Electronics Association, Greater Monmouth Chapter; Association of Old Crows, Garden State Chapter; Aspen Consulting Group; L3Harris Technologies; Naval Air Warfare Center, Aircraft Division-Lakehurst; Naval Civilian Managers Association, Lakehurst Chapter; New Jersey Society of American Military Engineers; Association of the U.S. Army, Monmouth Chapter; New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium; and the Ocean County College Foundation.
- For over a month, students in the Engineering and Industrial/Technical Studies program worked in the context of the OCC-NAVAIR Educational Partnership agreement to construct the obstacle course for the New Jersey/New York regional event for SeaPerch (underwater robotics) that was held April 9, 2022, at the Neptune Aquatic Center.
Center for Academic Success
- The Center for Academic Success brought 265 middle school students from Toms River Intermediate Schools East, North, and South to campus on April 4, 5, and 7, 2022. Students were introduced to OCC Perkins-funded programs that overlap with the Toms River High School academies. Students who attended April 7, 2022, were also treated to a performance in the Grunin Center featuring Ms. JoAnn Nocera. Nocera’s presentation focused on strategies for bringing about joy at school, at home, and in life. On April 29, 2022, another Perkins showcase will be hosted with Brick center that will focus on OCC Perkins programs in graphic design and photography.
- College Readiness Now VII testing is going well. Summer math bootcamp and Summer course offerings are now being developed.
- On April 12, 2022, Dr. Alexa M. Beshara-Blauth, Executive Director of Institutional Planning, Effectiveness, and Compliance, Dr. Henry Jackson, Executive Director of Academic Success, and Ms. Carmella Smith, Accreditation Liaison Officer of Middle States Commission on Higher Education, virtually visited Manchester Township High School to conduct a Middle States observation. Manchester Township High School, which was approved as an additional academy location in 2019, was selected as one of two schools to be observed. Smith met with Manchester’s administration, embedded faculty, and students to discuss their overall satisfaction with the early college program and partnership. Both Dr. Jackson and Dr. Beshara-Blauth participated in the welcome and meeting with the administrators and in the debrief meeting. Ms. Smith will be submitting a report to the Middle States Commission in May. The visit was a success and no concerns were expressed by Manchester’s administration, embedded faculty, or students. Manchester is also planning to increase their course offerings in the disciplines of business, digital mass media, graphic design, and music.
School of Arts and Humanities
- On April 8, 2022, Humanities College Lecturer II Stephanie Shestakow hosted an El Museo Del Barrio virtual tour for students to explore the works of the art museum.
- On April 11, 2022, Music Instructor Karin Gargone and Humanities College Lecturer II Brian Gilmore hosted a performing arts degree information and support session for performing arts degree majors and students curious about the degree. The session included musical performances and allowed students to review degree requirements (dance, music, and theatre) and learn about transfer auditions, scholarships, extracurricular activities, and career options.
- On April 12, 2022, OCC presented the Poetry Festival 2022 featuring “An Afternoon with Natasha Trethewey,” which was a virtual poetry reading and discussion by the former U.S. Poet Laureate (2012-14). This event was held in collaboration with Lehigh University. English College Lecturer II Christine Cryan was instrumental in coordinating this event. The following day, Associate Professor of English Jayanti Tamm led a poetry open mic event for students and the campus community.
- On April 14, 2022, Dr. Mark Westmoreland, College Lecturer II in Philosophy, and Mr. Jason Molloy, College Lecturer II in English, presented a screening of SEASPIRACY, a documentary about the evils of the fishing industry.
- Brian Gilmore continued his work with the Friday afternoon piano series on April 1, 2022, with a recital by pianist Maria Yefimova. The event featured a lecture and recital on the music of Alexander Scriabin. On April 16, 2022, Ms. Yefimova gave a master class to OCC piano students.
- On April 18, 2022, English College Lecturer II Heather Sciarappa presented a screening of Angst, which is a film-based education program designed to raise awareness around anxiety with an emphasis on youth and families. The screening also included access to further resources and materials. Also, on April 18, 2022, Dr. Justin Pfeiffer, History College Lecturer II, and the History Club sponsored “Hindenburg: Flights of Fancy,” featuring a presentation by Mr. Kevin Pace, trustee of the Lakehurst Naval Historical Society.
- Communications and Theatre College Lecturer II Paul Chalakani and the OCC Repertory Theatre presented The Crucible from April 22 to 24, 2022, in the Black Box Theatre, with additional performances scheduled for April 29, 30, and May 1, 2022.
- As part of the Holocaust Days of Remembrance, on April 26, 2022, Dr. Justin Pfeifer will lecture on Nazi atrocities against Soviet POWs.
- On April 27, 2022, Adjunct Music Instructor Julia Kim and Mr. Brian Gilmore are collaborating in a performance of the first movement of Beethoven’s Spring Sonata for violin and piano, as a part of the “Mathematics, Music to Your Ears” lecture.
School of Nursing and Health Sciences
- From March 7 to 15, 2022, the Student Nurse Organization (SNO) participated in a collection of items for Ukrainian refugees; blankets, hats, gloves, clothes, diapers, air mattresses, personal care items, and non-perishable food were collected. SNO members and their advisors, as well as faculty and staff, assisted with sorting items to prepare them for shipping to Romania and Poland.
SNO held a career day on March 15, 2022, with 35 representatives from 21 agencies in attendance. Students were provided with information on applying for positions within various healthcare agencies following completion of the program. Information was also available to students who are currently in the Nursing program regarding application for nursing assistant positions. New Jersey City University and Kean University participated in the event to discuss the BSN completion program with 105 prospective students.
SNO hosted a blood drive in collaboration with RWJ/ Barnabas Health on April 18, 2022, in the H. Hovnanian Health Sciences building.
- Mary Fennessy, BA, MAS, represented the School of Nursing and Health Sciences at pre-nursing information sessions held on March 4 and 16, 2022. These sessions are for students who intend to enter the Nursing program. Some of these sessions were offered virtually.
- During the week of March 28, 2022, there was a major upgrade to the simulation center within the H. Hovnanian Health Sciences Building. The upgrade will enhance student participation in life-like situations to prepare them for actual patient care. It will also provide faculty the ability to consistently update simulation scenarios, assess hands-on skills with multi-camera angles, and facilitate debriefing of simulation from mobile devices. Simulation experiences enhance patient safety as faculty assess student competency to practice and students evaluate their own performance identifying areas for growth.
Center for Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Education
Dr. Alice Botein-Furrevig, Director of the Center for Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Education, wrote a curriculum for middle school titled, “From Bias to Bloodshed,” as part of ongoing outreach programs exploring the relationship between hate speech, stereotyping, antisemitism, and the Holocaust. The program, which brings contemporary issues to the forefront, contains lecture notes and PowerPoints and will be presented in late Spring or early Fall.
Dr. Botein-Furrevig was invited to attend an event sponsored by the Ocean County Board of Commissioners, Ocean County Library, and Ocean County Division of Cultural and Heritage kicking off Simon Wiesenthal Center’s “Courage to Remember,” a 40-panel traveling exhibition on the Holocaust, which will be on the OCC campus from April 25 to 30, 2022.
During Holocaust Remembrance Week, from April 25 to 30, 2022, Dr. Botein-Furrevig will give opening remarks and two presentations, “The Pink Triangle: Hitler’s War Against Gays” and “Blacks Under the Swastika.” Dr. Justin Pfeifer will discuss Russian POWs. Guest artist Naomi Miller will perform her renowned narrative and musical program, “You are the Future.” Actor and writer Roger Grunwald will present (remotely) his one-man play, “The Mitzvah Project,” followed by a discussion. Dr. Botein-Furrevig will offer concluding remarks with a candle lighting and memorial prayer.
Dr. Botein-Furrevig resurrected the Center’s pre-COVID film series for seniors and the community. The Fall 2022 program will view/discuss films about various resistance and partisan movements in France during WWII, including a documentary about mime Marcel Marceau.
In preparation for the launch of 34 fully HyFlex course sections during the Summer sessions, Dean of Faculty Development and Learning Innovation Catherine Mancuso, with the assistance of the HyFlex power users, has been performing functional teaching tests on all classrooms slated to hold HyFlex classes this Summer. The tests are run using a well-defined test plan that was developed by Dean Mancuso. If the tests show a room has functionality issues, a copy of the report is sent to IT to be resolved. Of the 16 rooms being utilized on the Toms River campus, 12 have been tested, 7 of which are fully HyFlex functional when using the desktop in the room. Working closely with IT, any issues will be resolved well before the start of the Summer sessions.
Hands-on training for faculty teaching one of the HyFlex sections this Summer is in progress. Mr. Ibrahim Moustafa, Business College Lecturer II, just completed two, two-day evening sessions for adjunct faculty members. The adjuncts were trained on how best to utilize the Canvas skeleton and HyFlex technology in the classroom. Two additional sessions have been scheduled for the end of April and early May. Dr. Angel Camilo, College Lecturer II in Biology, is offering daytime office hours weekly for faculty to receive hands-on training. The HyFlex training session on April 13, 2022, gave faculty the opportunity to work on HyFlex equipment with assistance in the room.
On March 31, 2022, a HyFlex training was held for enrollment management and advisor colleagues. A HyFlex environment was simulated, with half of the participants attending in person and half attending remotely, so the participants could clearly describe the experience to students and answer any questions. Dean Mancuso and Dr. Amir Sadrian, Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs, will be working closely with Dr. Sheenah Hartigan, Executive Director of Enrollment Services, to address student questions and provide additional training, if needed.
OCC will be collaborating with Passaic County Community College to offer shared workshops and trainings for teaching in the HyFlex environment. OCC faculty were invited to participate in a training titled, “Teaching Strategies for the Concurrent Classroom,” on April 19, 2022. Dean Catherine Mancuso and Assistant Dean Sabrina Johnson-Taylor from Passaic County Community College are working together to find opportunities for collaborative practices.
Finance and Administration
- The OCC Board of School Estimate Meeting took place on April 6, 2022. The FY 2023 budget was approved, including a 2% increase in County support. The request for FY 2023 Chapter 12 funding was also approved. This funding will be used toward the expansion of the Grunin Lobby. Private donations are being sought to contribute to the project. The College is grateful to the County of Ocean for its continued outstanding support.
- Sara Winchester, Executive Vice President of Finance and Administration, served as Vice Chair on the Middle States Evaluation Team for the reaccreditation of Clinton Community College in New York. The virtual visit took place from April 12 to April 15, 2022.
- The search to identify the next President of Ocean County College has begun. The Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) has been selected to assist the College with the Presidential search process; the Search Consultant from ACCT is Dr. Bradley Ebersole. On Wednesday, April 27, 2022, and Thursday, April 28, 2022, in-person and virtual listening sessions will take place for Dr. Ebersole to gain insight and input from the College community to develop a Presidential Profile for recruiting purposes.
- Winchester has worked with Connor Strong & Buckelew on the renewal of employee dental insurance through Horizon Dental for the upcoming fiscal year. There will be no increase in premiums for the College or employees in FY 2023.
- State College Contract law was updated and approved recently by the legislature. The updates were very advantageous for colleges and included increasing the bid threshold to $100,000 and allowing for three-year contracts. These updates would also benefit community colleges, and Ms. Christine Healey, Executive Director of Procurement and Compliance, prepared an outline of benefits supporting alignment with State College Contract Law. The outline was provided to the New Jersey Council of County Colleges and is currently under review by a Presidential committee. The Council has indicated there is broad support for lobbying to update community college procurement law to match state college law. It is hoped the Council will provide lobbyist support in the near future.
- Winchester and Ms. Healey are working with Bubbakoos management to renew its contract and make some adjustments in response to student feedback. Bubbakoos has decided to focus on serving in the Larson Center and will no longer provide catering services. This allows the College to work with businesses in the area to provide catering and develop deeper relationships in the local restaurant community. Bubbakoos will remain open this Summer with limited menu options.
Ms. Mary Lancaster, Controller, and the Accounting staff have been working closely with Barnes & Noble to encourage students to return rental textbooks obtained through the First-Day Program. The First-Day Program provides rental and e-books to students before the first day of classes, and the cost is included in tuition. Because the program is so seamless and easy for students, many forget they have an obligation to return the rental books. Letters have gone out to students who failed to return books due at the end of the Fall semester with the hope of avoiding the need to bill them for the cost of the books. A multi-faceted campaign is underway to ensure that students are aware that rental books must be returned at the conclusion of the Spring semester.
Office of Information Technology
Mr. James Ross, CIO, and Mr. Sean O’Leary, Technical Director, are constantly working on improving protection over OCC cyber assets and have recommended the College deploy CrowdStrike. CrowdStrike leverages advanced EDR (endpoint detection and response) applications and techniques to provide an industry-leading NGAV (next generation anti-virus) offering that is powered by machine learning to ensure that breaches are stopped before they occur. CrowdStrike is recommended by Ellucian, and Ellucian will contribute to the purchase of the product for the first year. CrowdStrike will replace the other protection programs currently in use by the end of the fiscal year. The cost of this platform will be significantly more than previously expended for cyber protection; however, due to the increase in threats worldwide, it is believed this investment is necessary.
- College Relations collaborated with the Tutoring Center to develop a trackable QR code which students can scan to schedule an appointment via TutorTrac. The QR code will be included on posters placed in prominent campus locations. The Tutoring Center will receive monthly reports with usage statistics.
- Maureen Conlon, Associate Director of Web Services, presented “The Digital Marketing Budgeting Survival Kit” at the ClickZ Collective Conference on March 30, 2022. ClickZ, one of the world’s largest digital marketing communities, disseminates innovations and insights through articles, podcasts, webinars, and case studies to digital marketers across diverse industries. Ms. Conlon’s presentation focused on maintaining output in uncertain times, analyzing the viability of new lower-cost channels, targeted training to address gaps in skills, and audience-based strategies that maximize results.
100 Women Campaign
Two Salary Negotiation workshops have been scheduled for the 100 Women Campaign members on Wednesday, June 8, and Wednesday, September 14, 2022. This is a two-part series facilitated by an organization called Disrupt the Gap. These programs are made possible thanks to the Gayle G. Wayman Fund.
Ocean County College Foundation
Annual Concert Event
On Friday, April 1, 2022, the Foundation hosted the TEN Tenors to a sold-out house at the Grunin Center. As one of the Foundation signature events, sincere thanks are extended to the many community sponsors and supporters; the event raised over $40,000 for the students of OCC.
All applications are currently under review. Student Life will be presenting all Graduating Awards on May 25, 2022, at the Annual Awards Ceremony.
Campus-Wide Fund Requests
The annual fund request period closed on Monday, April 18, 2022. The funding for all requests will be announced in May following committee and Foundation Board approval for budget planning into the coming fiscal year.
Foundation Executive Board
Foundation Board Chair David Paulus announced that Ms. Anne Kraljic has agreed to join the Foundation’s Executive Board Team next month. Appreciation is expressed to Ms. Kraljic and to all of Foundation Board members for their continued dedication.
This year’s MODC Silver Gull Award honorees include Foundation Board Member, Commissioner Ginny Haines, and the Wintrode Family Foundation. The honors are well deserved.
Foundation Trustee Debra Morgan and Lakeland Bank awarded a grant of $5,000 to assist OCC’s Helping Hands Food Pantry. Their generous support of the campus-wide food pantry is deeply appreciated.
Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
Dr. Eileen Garcia, Vice President of e-Learning and Learning Enterprises, and Mr. Ken Malagiere, Executive Director of the OCC Foundation, continue to work with the steering committee in creating a report for the College and Foundation Boards of Trustees.
Foundation Art Collection Exhortatory Committee
The committee met this past month and has formed three committees to move this project forward. The Steering Committee, Curation Committee, and Advancement Committee will report on progress, modeling their efforts after the successes of Hudson County Community College.
The Blauvelt Speaker Series
On May 19, 2022, the Foundation welcomes explorer, producer, author, and social entrepreneur Philippe Cousteau at 6:30 p.m. to the Main Stage of the Grunin Center. Tickets are available at www.grunincenter.org.
Summer Scholarship Celebration
The Foundation’s Summer Scholarship Celebration will again be a wonderful evening on OCC’s beautiful campus mall on June 24, 2022, at 6:30 p.m. The honorees this year are:
- Rosann Bar, Ph.D. and Patricia Gianotti, Ph.D., LCADA
For their dedication to OCC and the Addictions and Counseling Program
- Alison Noone, M.B.A.
For outstanding dedication to the operation of the Helping Hands Food Pantry
- The Wintrode Family Foundation
For the establishment of the Roberta W. Wintrode Memorial Fund
The New Jersey Symphony (NJS, formally NJSO)
The New Jersey Symphony will be welcomed back to campus on Tuesday, June 28, 2022, at 8 p.m. The Foundation Executive Board unanimously voted to approve this sponsorship opportunity to benefit the campus and broader community as the Symphony is once again enjoyed under the stars.
Workforce and Professional Education Apprenticeship Programs
Community Health Worker
A new cohort of Community Health Worker (CHW) apprentices has completed the remote training program, bringing the number of CHW completers to 55. The participants will now complete 2,000 hours of on-the-job training with their employers across the state. Community Health Workers primarily work out in the community with specific target populations and work closely with medical providers, primary care teams, and other agencies to improve patient care and overall outcomes. Community Health Workers help patients develop health management plans and goals and follow up with health management/care plans with both patients and providers. Community Health Workers also coach patients in effective management of their chronic health conditions and self-care, assist patients in understanding care plans and instructions, and document activities, service plans, and results in an effective manner.
A new, regional pilot program with Walgreens (Ocean and Monmouth counties), together with an established statewide partnership with CVS, strengthens the apprenticeship pathways in the Pharmacy Technician Program. Three recent completers of the Pharmacy Technician Apprenticeship course will be joining CVS soon to complete their 2,000 hours of on-the-job training, while the Walgreens’ pilot is projected to start this Summer. At Walgreens and CVS, many employees start as Pharmacy Technicians and then move into store management roles.
Certified Medical Assistant
The first cohort of ten Medical Assistant apprentices completed the training program on March 4, 2022, and are moving into their 2,000 hours of on-the-job training at multiple RWJ/Barnabas locations. These incumbent workers comprised the first ‘earn as you learn’ cohort; this training model will be replicated with other apprenticeship employer partners over the next year. Medical Assistants play a critical role on the healthcare team and are currently in high demand. They are skilled multi-taskers who direct the flow of patients, which allows the practice to operate efficiently, increase revenue, and provide a positive experience for the patient.
In accordance with New Jersey Public Law 2015, Chapter 220, and College Policy #2332, Reporting of On-Campus Criminal and Fire Events, attached is the monthly statistics report of crimes, fires, and other emergencies on campus for the reporting period March 24, 2022, through April 22, 2022.
Transfer students were supported in March and April through College Visits, Instant Decision Days, and Transfer Advising provided by partner colleges and coordinated by Ms. Laura Wills, Coordinator of Transfer Services. These services continue to provide an important connection for OCC students who also benefit from application fee waivers. Four-year colleges and universities that recently visited OCC are:
- Stockton University
- Centenary University
- Thomas Edison State University
- Rider University
- Chestnut Hill College
- Grand Canyon University
- Berkeley College
- Georgian Court University
- Kean University
- John’s University
- Rowan University
- Felician University
- Penn State (rescheduled from a snow day)
- New Jersey City University
- Rider University
Ms. Wills delivered a transfer session geared to music students during the Music Information Session. She will also support the business and accounting students during the Accounting Symposium set for late April.
- On April 1, 2022, staff from the Office of Disability Services attended a webinar, “Integrating Disability Culture into Disability Services and the Campus Community.” The webinar reviewed current studies documenting that 20% of college students in the United States report having a disability and the importance for higher education institutions to have an infrastructure to support them. Current practices and supports often come in the form of disability services tasked to protect students’ right to education. The webinar shared insight on how to implement disability culture on campus as shared by qualitative research studies on the subject.
- On April 13, 2022, the Office of Disability Services received approval as a College Coordination Site with the Workforce Recruitment Program for College Students with Disabilities (WRP). WRP is a free recruitment and referral program that connects federal and select private-sector employers nationwide with postsecondary students and recent graduates with disabilities eager to demonstrate their skills through summer internships or permanent jobs. WRP is managed by the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) and the U.S. Department of Defense Diversity Management Operations Center (DMOC) with support from other federal agencies. Disability Services will serve as the primary coordinator of services and collaborate with Career Services, the Counseling Center, and Veterans and Military Resources Center to promote the program and services. Student enrollment for the program will begin August 2022.
- On April 19, 2022, staff attended a meeting hosted by the Ocean County Workforce Development Board Disabilities Committee, a local partnership of private and public sector representatives that provides coordinated planning, policy guidance, and oversight for all workforce readiness programs in Ocean County. As a new member of the committee, Disability Services shares a unique perspective and insight describing the success and potential barriers experienced by college students with disabilities entering into the workforce.
- The Office of Disability Services continues to provide accommodation and support services to eligible students under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. In addition, the office provides consultation to OCC faculty, instructors, and staff. To date, the office notes a 38.5% increase in new student approvals from Spring 2021 to Spring 2022.
The Counseling Center provides programs and services to address the mental health, recovery, wellness, addiction, and academic needs of students.
- Congratulations to Displaced Homemakers Program Coordinator Carmen Mora for passing the social worker licensing examination; she is now a Licensed Social Worker.
- Katie Hueth, Prevention Education Coordinator, is a guest speaker at the annual New Jersey College Counselors Association conference. She will be speaking about “Current Topics in College Counseling – Addressing Substance Use Among College Students.”
- Darra Stack, Student Intervention Specialist, presented a workshop on grief, which was developed in response to students’ increasing concerns about grief, bereavement, and loss. Ms. Stack and Ms. Kelly Petrolis, also a Student Intervention Specialist, presented a two-part workshop on healthy relationships, developed in response to a trend noticed in students wanting ways to develop and sustain relationships. Another session of Question, Persuade and Refer (QPR) is being offered on April 29, 2022. In collaboration with the New Jersey Mental Health Association and the New Jersey Council of County Colleges, OCC is are hosting Mental Health First Aid training, an eight-hour evidence-based program. On May 5, 2022, the Center is collaborating with the Planetarium to offer the very popular Meditation Under the Stars program. The annual notification was released to students about alcohol and substance use, treatment, and resources, in accordance with the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act.
- April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. The Empowerment Self-Defense Workshop was held on April 14, 2022, hosted by the Supporting Students in Recovery program. Students learned verbal and physical techniques to hold boundaries and practice self-awareness. On April 27, 2022, Denim Day will be recognized in collaboration with the Center’s community partner, Providence House, as the end to sexual violence.
- The Recovery Support Program provides services and information to students in support of their recovery. There are currently 189 students participating in the Recovery Support Program. April is Alcohol Use Prevention Month. On April 7, 2022, in collaboration with the Ocean County Health Department, an educational tabling event was held regarding alcohol use and risks of intoxicated driving. Students participated in a simulation exercise and were provided information and resources for on-campus and community supports. The Recovery Support Program held a “Sober Spring Break” event in partnership with Hope Sheds Light, offering students the opportunity to engage in social gatherings free of substance use.
- The academic support program, Restore Your Score, provides services and information to the 60 students on academic probation from the Fall 2021 semester. Thirty-two students have worked individually with Ms. Kelly Petrolis for a total of 65 appointments. The other academic support program, Starfish, provides information to the 377 students who are on academic warning status from the Fall 2021 semester. Both programs use Canvas to provide information and services.
- The Center is partnering with the OCC Library on a display recognizing May as Mental Health Awareness Month. In addition, the Center is working with the Veterans and Military Resources Center on wellness week activities, and a table was offered with an interactive game for the Ruck for Reason on April 18, 2022.
- The Displaced Homemakers Program provides much needed support and services to individuals who are moving to economic self-sufficiency after a divorce, separation, death, or disability of the primary wage earner. There are currently 38 new clients and 79 continuing clients. There are 6 clients enrolled in Workforce and Professional Education classes. Clients continue to enroll in computer skills classes, which increase their preparation for employment.
Every few years, the Displaced Homemakers Network selects four centers to present the New Beginnings Award to one of its participants in May, which is Displaced Homemakers Month. OCC’s program was selected this year. The award is presented to a client who has participated in the program, overcome barriers, and excelled. Ms. Melissa Douglas is this year’s recipient; she has demonstrated outstanding resilience and a deep commitment to the program.
As a previous participant in the Displaced Homemakers Program, Ms. Carman Mora now serves as the Coordinator of OCC’s Community and Displaced Homemakers Program. At Thursday’s Board meeting, she will provide an update on the program and introduce Ms. Douglas, who will say a few words about her journey.
It is extremely noteworthy that the last time OCC presented the New Beginnings Award, Ms. Mora was the recipient the year she graduated from the program, and she now is the Coordinator of the program. Ms. Mora is a program success story herself, and we are proud of her accomplishments.
- Professional development is a priority for the Counseling Center staff. The Displaced Homemakers Program staff completed training on the Holland career theory, which is used with clients when developing their Plans of Action. The staff is also participating in certification training on Intimate Partner Violence. Counselors attended training on addiction and recovery, suicide prevention, mental health, and other related topics.
- The CARE Team continues its important work. Since July 1, 2021, the CARE Team has handled 829 CARE reports. This is 85 more reports than in the same time frame in 2020-21; in fact, there were 816 reports from July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021. The CARE Team thanks campus community members for their diligence in reporting concerning behaviors and students who are experiencing challenges that impact their academic success.
Enrollment and Retention
- Executive Director Sheenah Hartigan and Coordinator of Outreach and Enrollment Services Jim Campbell were treated to a tour and lunch at the new Fort Monmouth campus of New Jersey City University, along with other Student Affairs members and Dr. Jerry Racioppi, Vice President of Student Affairs.
- Enrollment Services engaged with potential students at Toms River High School East through the Ocean County School Counselors Association College Fair on April 6, 2022. The students were treated to information about enrolling at OCC as well as received customized frisbees and scrunchies, both of which were a hit.
- Jim Campbell and Mr. Jim Hauenstein, Director of the Southern Education Center, met with Stafford Township on April 1, 2022, to discuss partnerships for internships. The Township will work in coordination with the College on a new initiative from the New Jersey Council of County Colleges to promote opportunities to students.
- Hartigan and Mr. Tom Gialanella, Executive Director of School Relations, met with Toms River Board of Education members and high school and middle school principals, on April 5, 2022, to discuss early college opportunities for high school and incoming high school students.
- Hartigan spoke with the Ocean County superintendents on April 12, 2022, to discuss early college opportunities through Ocean County College, as well as new HyFlex options available at the College.
- Ocean County College hosted the Good Ideas Conference at the Gateway Building for the Ocean County School Counselors Association, with 175 high school counselors from Monmouth County and Ocean County in attendance. There were a number of educational workshops, breakfast and lunch were served, and the keynote speaker was Ms. Janet Carbin from Survivor 39.
- Enrollment Services team members assisted in hosting 46 Belmar middle school students and 6 of their counselors on campus on April 6, 2022. The students were treated to a planetarium show and then participated in a trivia game, “Do You Speak College?” The students and counselors all left with a better understanding of college and how OCC can fit into achieving their goals.
- For the month of March, 502 in-person transactions were completed in the Student Enrollment Building, according to QLess. The average wait time was 2.67 minutes, and the average service time was 3.08 minutes.
- A survey was launched following a student’s interaction with the department in-person at the Student Enrollment Building. Upon leaving, students receive a three-question text survey allowing them to indicate their overall rating, how helpful the team members were, and whether they would recommend these services to a friend. Currently, the HUB has 4.5 stars out of 5 for helpfulness.
- The Success Coaches under the Retention Team, directed by Dr. Kate Mohr, Assistant Director of Enrollment Services, completed 3,293 outgoing calls in Advise for students who were academically at-risk or needed an early intervention for Spring courses. This includes 125 alerts that were triggered by faculty members for students in need of direct assistance.
- The Hub Technicians completed 2,790 outgoing calls in Recruit, primarily directed at assisting students with next steps in the on-boarding process after inquiring about the College or applying to OCC.
Southern Education Center
- The opportunities designed for students seeking course work at the Southern Education Center have expanded as registration for upcoming semesters takes place. The Summer First Five-Week and Summer Second Five-Week course schedules now have a combined 18 additional class opportunities for students through the HyFlex model of instruction. The Fall 2022 course schedule at the SEC has over 45 classes being offered, including 6 classes utilizing the video-connected classroom model. Working in collaboration with Dr. Amir Sadrian, Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs, the creation of additional HyFlex and video-connected instruction modalities allows student access to a wider variety of courses while keeping them closer to home. Cindy Fallon, Academic Administrator in STEM, and Ms. Johanna Riemen, Academic Administrator in Business and Social Sciences, have been instrumental in supporting the development of these video-connected course offerings.
Students currently taking the video-connected class during the Spring 2022 semester have reported a favorable experience regarding this pilot instructional opportunity. All have said they would take other classes offered in the video-connected model to save on time and the cost of travelling to the main campus in Toms River. Additionally, some students at the SEC have begun to inquire about the prospect of additional HyFlex course options in future semesters.
- The SEC continues to host a wide variety of student services and related service programs. Taylor Dulemba, Health Sciences Career Specialist, visited a few classes and held tabling events on April 12 and 13, 2022. Mr. Enrico DeRooy, Admissions, Stockton University, held a tabling session on March 30, 2022, with a return visit scheduled for May 2, 2022. Upcoming information sessions at the SEC include Ms. Carmen Mora, Coordinator of the Community and Displaced Homemakers Program, who will be on site on May 3, 2022, and Ms. Jamie Prioli, Assistant Director of Student Disability Services, who will visit the SEC on May 12, 2022, along with representatives from OCC’s Counseling Center.
- The Canvas SEC Announcement shell has continued to be a vital message board to the southern area students. In addition to alerting students to the above-mentioned SEC visits, other critical messages, such as Summer and Fall class offerings, have seen over 1,400 student views in April, bringing the total student views of the SEC Canvas Announcement page to almost 5,000 during the Spring 2022 semester.
- The Southern Education Center Academic Advising staff continues to manage the Academic Advising email inbox. In addition to supporting walk-in registration appointments and holding virtual advising sessions, the SEC staff is now also utilizing QLess to manage student appointments.
- Ryan Luurtsema, Assistant Director of the Veterans and Military Resources Center, will visit the SEC on April 26, 2022, to conduct a training program for the SEC advising staff.
- Workforce and Professional Education will again be offering Adult Basic Education courses at the SEC starting April 25, 2022. High School Equivalency and English-as-a-Second Language classes will be offered.
- Student Life is excited to share that two new clubs have been chartered on campus this semester. Students petitioned and successfully created the Ocean County College Habitat for Humanity Campus Chapter and the Jewish Student Union. While these clubs have very different missions from one another, they are both meeting the needs of the interests of the student body.
The OCC Habitat for Humanity Campus Chapter is being sponsored by our local Habitat for Humanity affiliate, Northern Ocean Habitat for Humanity. The club will serve the campus and the greater community by encouraging student participation in group activities that develop citizenship and the spirit of service for the improvement of the well-being of community members.
The Jewish Student Union will focus on the Jewish religion and spiritual beliefs practiced by Jewish people around the world. The club’s goal is to create an atmosphere that will promote tolerance, understanding, and acceptance of current belief systems and how they are integrated into society at local and global levels.
Student Life looks forward to attracting new students to campus engagement with these new student organizations.
Veterans and Military Resources Center
- April is Military Child Appreciation Month. On April 14, 2022, the Veterans and Military Resources Center hosted a Purple Up Day on campus. This event is nationally recognized to promote student engagement among veteran- and military-dependent students at Ocean County College. Its purpose is to build and strengthen connections with other students and to show support and bring awareness to the sacrifices military dependents made while their parents served in the military. Social events assist in retention and intervention efforts as well as further support military-friendly status.
- Sixty attendees supported the event and participated in games, raffles, and giveaways, with attendees being identified by wearing the color purple in their attire or makeup.
- The Veterans and Military Resources Center partnered with Academic Success with hosting over 250 sixth-grade students on campus and created workshop experiences focused on STEM, Supply Chain Logistics, AI, and Cyber Security.
One of the workshops included an experience to write letters to deployed service members from New Jersey who are currently overseas as part of the “Thank you for your Service” campaign.
- OCC Veterans Coordinator Kencis Kleinschmidt met with the Veterans Coordinator at Middlesex County College. As the coordinator positions from both institutions are grant-funded, discussion took place from the grant structure standpoint. Kleinschmidt received a tour of Middlesex County College’s One-Stop Shop of veterans resources and the Student Veteran Lounge. Topics discussed were best practices and lessons learned at both institutions; future partnerships and collaborations, including a community college affinity group with the VA; and participating in and hosting Our Community Salutes ceremony for 2023 as a result of this site visit.
- Wellness Day: Ruck for Reason was held on campus on Monday, April 18, 2022, to promote physical and mental well-being among OCC students, as well as student engagement among the student veteran and military dependents. By promoting physical and mental well-being among students through social interaction during wellness week, students had the opportunity to build and strengthen connections with other students, veterans, and community members. Wellness and social engagements assist in retention, intervention, and graduation efforts among the student population. Wellness Day had over 80 participants throughout the day that experienced fellowship, comradery, and community advocacy.
e-Learning and Learning Enterprises
- The e-Learning Department is transitioning online math courses to Alta Knewton, a product currently utilized in OCC’s School of STEM courses. Alta is a complete courseware solution that combines adaptive learning technology with quality content. Alta delivers a personalized learning experience for students to improve proficiency in the course learning outcomes. The instructional content for a course will include an OER textbook, engaging videos, and customized assessments for each student.
- The e-Learning Department is on track to launch a Simple Syllabus pilot for the 2022 Summer term. Simple Syllabus is a centralized, template-driven platform that will provide the ability to create and publish interactive class syllabi for online courses. In addition, the software will give students immediate access to syllabi and offer faculty the opportunity to personalize specific information for their courses.
- All online courses now have an orientation assessment to assist students with becoming acclimated to online course requirements and expectations. The orientation is proctored and will guide the students through the steps of using Honorlock and reduce their anxiety about taking content assessments in the course. The assessment is especially helpful for third-party publisher assessments.
e-Learning at Ocean County College’s Open House
The e-Learning Department welcomed the opportunity to engage and entice prospective students during the upcoming Spring 2022 Open House held on April 27, 2022.
During the Open House, e-Learning will have both a physical and virtual presence. College Lecturers will demonstrate online courses on various subjects, such as psychology, English, math, ESL and applied linguistics, and biology. Team members will present a virtual slideshow on a large monitor, highlighting e-Learning awards, programs, instructors, and interactive technology utilized in distance learning. In addition, College Lecturers will engage visitors with hands-on information and labs respective to their fields.
Dr. Eugene de Silva, College Lecturer II specializing in Chemistry, Physics, and Environmental Science, will be present virtually via WebEx. Dr. de Silva will serve as the primary panelist for the “Ask an Online Instructor” feature of the event and as a scientist conducting live and engaging lab experiments from his home utilizing a digital platform. His presentations will demonstrate the interactive labs conducted regularly in OCC’s e-Learning science courses.
e-Learning Professional Development Series
Roundtable for Adjuncts: Spring Fling, 10 Ways to Spring into Action in Your e-Learning Courses
The e-Learning Roundtable for Adjuncts continues to provide online instructors with networking opportunities and the chance to discuss the best online teaching practices. The Adjunct Roundtable discussions are held virtually via WebEx on the third Thursday of every month. The latest roundtable discussion was held on April 21, 2022, from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
During the Adjunct Roundtable, the e-Learning faculty worked in alignment with the e-Learning Online Evaluative Criteria. They collaborated on 10 top educational research methods to improve their e-Learning courses. This collaboration included maintaining a sustained focus on e-Learning course objectives, student communications, and the success indicators to meet the project goal of creating a welcoming student-centered learning environment. Methods were collected in a repository document of best practices to increase student persistence, adjunct onboarding, and student retention. This roundtable included a special guest, an Educational Technology Leader, Lois Alston, from Long Branch Public Schools. Ms. Alston has over twenty years in education and is an Ed-Tech enthusiast certified in over 20 platforms. By completing the training, the e-Learning faculty have gained knowledge of interactive tools for teaching an asynchronous course online.
Ellucian Live Conference
In April 2022, Ms. Caroline Brittain, Academic Administrator of e-Learning, virtually attended the Ellucian Live conference. The conference featured more than 150 panel discussions, presentations, highlights, and guest speakers. As a department, e-Learning will increase fluency and efficiency in Ellucian Colleague and Entrinsik Informer by attending the conference. Ms. Brittain collected best practices to bring the e-Learning Team up to speed on current trends in reporting and analysis of enrollment data. In addition, the e-Learning department will have a repository of presentations for the next year to reference for continued professional development for the College community.
Quality Matters (QM) Workshops
e-Learning College Lecturers and the Instructional Design team are enrolled in the QM Improving Your Online Course workshop. The workshop focuses on applying the essential Specific Review Standards of the Quality Matters Rubric to online courses. The team is evaluating online courses to meet the QM Rubric standards. In addition, e-Learning personnel will earn a certificate upon completing the training.
The e-Learning Department is currently interviewing candidates for the position of College Lecturer II in Business, and recruitment of a College Lecturer II in e-Learning Computer Science has just begun. It is anticipated that final recommendations for both positions will be made by the June Board meeting.
Instructional Design and Technology
Online Learning Consortium and Merlot Innovative Conference Highlights
The e-Learning Department virtually attended and presented at the Online Learning Consortium’s Innovate Conference from March 28 to April 1, 2022. Lead Instructional Designers Laura Wingler and Juliann Young, along with College Lecturer II Jack Kelnhofer, showcased how the department uses innovative instructional design models and creative solutions to tackle the challenges of running online courses in shortened terms.
e-Learning professionals from around the globe tuned in to see the team present OCC’s new technologies and changing pedagogies designed to sharpen online learning and reshape the way accelerated learning allows for student success in a 7.5-week term. The presentation highlighted the following goals:
- Rethinking course design for all terms
- Mastering the calendar
Attendees from the e-Learning team benefited from seminars and chose presentation tracks specific to their career goals. Some of the presentation tracks included Blended Teaching and Learning; Instructional Technologies and Tools; Open Learning; Research: Designs, Methods, and Findings; plus Teaching and Learning Practice.
Some OLC conference highlights useful for the OCC e-learning Department revolved around Instructional Technology and Tools. One seminar that sparked keen interest was a Virtual Escape room. It will serve as a medium to digitally enhance case studies, discussion boards, group work, video lectures, and other course resources; also, it will add an element of enhanced engagement for the students. Another webinar in this field focused on exploring tools and strategies to make exceptional education videos. It allowed instructors to look at various software and platforms to create great content videos for their students. Finally, the presenters highlighted the difference between using a webcam versus a screencast to impact the students. The session’s goal was to humanize course content yet be innovative and effectively share the content. Lastly, the session that sparked interest focused on providing students with the options of online science labs. Due to the pandemic, students will look for flexibility in scheduling lab courses, and Science Interactive shared innovative tools it offers to help meet this demand.
In preparation for the first cohort in the Fall at Badr International University (BIU) in Egypt, the BIU marketing team met with the OCC International Programs (IP) team to launch a marketing campaign starting July 2022.
Additionally, OCC’s International Programs Academic Administrator Marwa Khalifa, and College Lecturer II Lauren Remenyi recently launched a Facebook group for OCC International Programs for the purposes of marketing and outreach.
OCEAN COUNTY COLLEGE
Cleary Act Public Crime Log
From 3/24/2022 to 4/22/2022
|Incident Type||No incidents recorded for this date range|