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September 22, 2016

Dr. Larson’s September 2016 Report to the Board of Trustees

Dr. Jon Larson

TO: Members, OCC Board of Trustees

FROM: Jon H. Larson, Ph.D. President

SUBJECT: Items of Interest for the September 22, 2016, Board Meeting

DATE: September 16, 2016

Community Outreach

  • Dr. Ali Botein-Furrevig, Associate Professor of English, presented an educational awareness seminar on the Jewish Orthodox culture and the history of the Lakewood Jewish population to the employees at Larson Ford of Lakewood.  President Paul Larson is committed to ensuring that his staff is sensitive to this customer base.  Dr. Botein-Furrevig also gave a lecture based on her 2012 award winning book, “Heart of the Stranger: A Portrait of Lakewood’s Orthodox Community,” to over 140 attendees at the Lakewood Branch of the Ocean County Library.  The Asbury Park Press praised her on the presentation and her efforts to foster an understanding and tolerance of the Orthodox community.
  • Mr. Jason Ghibesi, Lecturer II of Political Science and History, presented a workshopentitled “Examining the Second Amendment” in honor of Constitution Day on September 12, 2016, at the Lakewood Branch of the Ocean County Library.  The lecture highlighted the Second Amendment and its role in society today, as well as what the Founding Fathers meant by it.  This is the first in a series of lectures by Mr. Ghibesi for the Ocean County Library System.

Student Affairs

  • On Friday, September 30, 2016, the Admissions Office is welcoming 50 guidance counselors and teachers from Ocean County high schools to the campus for a half day of exciting workshops.  The program features a number of informative sessionsto assist our high school partners with advising future OCC students.  Some of the topics will include new FAFSA filing options, updates to the NJ STARS program, changes to the Jump Start program, an Admissions overview, and a closer look at OCC’s new Hospitality Management program.  The day will conclude with lunch in the Larson Student Center and a campus tour.
  • The transition to new online processing of transcripts through the National Student Clearinghouse has been very successful.  Students can easily and conveniently place their orders online and receive email and text updates.  The Clearinghouse has processed a total of 6,180 orders, of which 3,532 were sent electronically and 2,648were paper deliveries.
  • The second annual EOF Student Leadership Retreat held in August was a success, with 21 students attending.  This year’s theme was “Inside Out: A Look at the Leader that Lives within ME.”   Highlights included workshops on financial leadership, the hidden power in self, and self-awareness and perspective.  Student leadersdeveloped a team-building exercise, The Onion, which was an engaging activity to facilitate sharing and talking.  This activity has since been utilized with another group to rave reviews.  The general response from the EOF community was quite positive.
  • This fall, the Center for Access and Equality is pleased to announce its Social Justice Series.  The kickoff event is scheduled for Tuesday, September 20, 2016, with two sessions presented by Dr. Robert Jensen, Professor of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin, who is a writer and political activist.  He has several publicationsand has made presentations on media, power, pornography, white privilege, activism, institutional racism, and inequality.  His lecture will provide a platform for meaningful dialogue in an attempt to understand differences.
  • New Student Orientation concluded on September 1, 2016.  Student response was excellent, with 95% of students indicating they understand how to plan and registerfor courses, 94% indicating their questions and concerns were addressed, and 90%indicating they feel ready to attend OCC.  Orientation Coordinator Michele Connollydid an outstanding job executing and managing the program, which requires constant supervision and maintenance throughout the spring and summer.

A total of 1,799 students attended Orientation this year.  Additionally, the Advising Office assisted approximately 140 first-time full-time students who registered after Orientations concluded.  This high volume of students was partially managed via freshman group advising.

  • NJ STARS Program Coordinator Elaine Schardien organized a NJ STARS Get Together at Blue Claws Stadium on Thursday, August 18, 2016.  In attendance were 10 OCC STARS alumni, 8 current STARS students, and 6 incoming STARS students.  Ms. Schardien used the event to initiate a NJ STARS mentoring program, with alumni reaching out to current students and current students reaching out to incoming students to develop mentoring relationships.  Of the alumni, five are pursuing their careers and five are currently at four-year institutions.

This was the first event of this kind for OCC NJ STARS students.  Students were enthusiastic and agreeable to attend another event in Fall 2016.

  • The Advising Office has made available to all faculty and staff advisors an Advising “course.”  Available in Canvas, advisors will be able to receive advising informationand access training resources via a tool they already utilize regularly, thus making the information more accessible.  A similar course, “Advising 101,” will be made available in Canvas to all OCC students this month.

Finance and Administration

  • The Ocean Way Colloquium Workshops

Two members of the Finance and Administration team, Ms. Elise Barocas, Controller, and Ms. Jan Kirsten, Executive Director of College Relations, participated in two Colloquium workshops on September 1, 2016, describing the flagship Leadership Academy’s project, The Ocean Way.  The workshops were well attended, and the team received very positive feedback.  Centering on excellence in student and customer service, the project is scheduled to be begin in Spring 2017.

  • Fall Rush

To service our students during the Rush period, the Cashiers’ Office and Student Services Office were open on two Saturdays, September 10 and 17, 2016, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon.  The Finance staff were in the Bookstore from Tuesday, September 6, through Tuesday, September 13, 2016, to assist students by checking their pending financial aid and/or providing student schedules.

  • Higher Education Bond Update

Ocean County College received funding for four State-backed bond projects in February 2014.  Below is a status report on the projects:

  • Equipment Leasing Fund (ELF) – The College was approved for $1,549,603,primarily to be used for classroom technology and nursing equipment.  The College is responsible to pay 25% of debt service.  The project is now 100% complete.
  • Building Our Futures (GO) Bond – The College was approved for $11,400,000 for the purpose of renovating the Instructional Technology Building.  The grant agreement is for $8,550,000 (75%), and the County of Ocean is providing a 25% match of $2,850,000.  The project is approximately 17% complete; the anticipated completion of the renovations is Fall 2018.
  • Higher Education Technology Infrastructure (HETI) Bond – The Collegewas approved for $1,319,532, primarily to be used to develop the College’s technology infrastructure.  The grant calls for a 50/50 split, with the Statepaying 50% and the College providing a 50% match using fund balance.  The project is approximately 93% complete, with anticipated completionby December 2016.
  • Higher Education Facilities Trust (HEFT) Bond – The College was approvedfor $1,692,769 to be used for the reconfiguration of the HVAC system in the Nursing Building as well as for nursing equipment.  The HEFT bond has no match requirement.  The project is 50% complete and anticipated to be completed by June 2017.
  • Human Resources
    • The Leadership Academy

Applicants for the upcoming 2016-2017 Leadership Academy were interviewedby two members of the President’s Leadership Team and one member of the first Leadership Academy cohort.  The 2016-17 cohort was announced at the Fall Colloquium on September 1, 2016:

  • Dr. Rosann Bar, Dean of the School of Business and Social Sciences
  • Ms. Megan Miskin, Assistant Director of EOF and Center for Access and Equality
  • Ms. Maureen Conlon, Assistant Director of Web Services
  • Ms. Jennifer Barnes, College Lecturer, Political Science
  • Dr. Maysa Hayward, Dean of Academic Outreach
  • Ms. Alison Noone, Assistant Director of Student Life
  • Ms. Tracy Walsh, Dean of the School of Nursing and Health Sciences
  • Dr. Kate Pandolpho, Director of Career, Employment, and Personal Counseling
  • Ms. Janine Dillard, Employee Training Specialist

  • Training and Development

A new Employee Training Program was launched during the summer months.  The training offerings cover a range of categories, including compliance, soft skills, technical/software, safety, and managerial skills.  All employees are encouraged to participate.  To date, learning topics, included:

  • Canvas Basics
  • Canvas Grade Book
  • Data Security
  • Introduction to Computers for Non-Computer Users
  • Clarifying Performance Expectations
  • Correcting Performance Problems

The Fall 2016 curriculum will include new classes in:

  • Time Management
  • Getting Along in the Workplace
  • Dealing with Difficult People
  • Presentation Design using PowerPoint

Human Resources has continued to offer Search Committee Training as well as one-on-one PeopleAdmin Training for new hiring managers in an effort to improve understanding of the recruiting/applicant tracking system.

  • Continuing Education and Professional Education
    • Customized Training/Workforce Development

Continuing Education representatives attended the Garden State Employment and Training Association Conference in September and disseminated information to professionals involved in workforce training.  Additionally, on September 21, 2016, a program will be held at the Lakewood Industrial Park to introduce CPE training programs.

  • Allied Health

CPE training programs in Phlebotomy, Veterinary Assistant, and Medical Assistant/EKG Technician offered this Fall 2016 semester have reached maximum enrollment, and waiting lists have been created for others interested in these programs.  In addition, health and wellness and health care professional development offerings continue to attract strong enrollment.

  • Senior Programs
    • CPE will host the Fall Active Adult Program, “Awesome Autumn,” on Tuesday and Wednesday, September 27 and 28, 2016.  The offeringsinclude “The Elements and Principles of Design” presented by Ms. Molly Johnson; “Anxious Autumns: The Cuban Missile Crisis: New Findings and the l934 Morro Castle Fire” presented by Mr. Richard Trimble, History Adjunct Faculty Member; “Falling in Love with Jazz” presented by Mr. David Marowitz; and “Change of Season – Harvesting our Gifts and Talents” presented by Ms. Regina Rosenthal.
    • A pilot program is scheduled in November to offer CPE offerings to residents in the Harrogate Retirement Community via video conferencing.
  • CPE is working collaboratively with the New Jersey Civil Service Commissionfor the testing on campus of future police officers on six consecutive Saturdays beginning in October.  The Commission reached out to New Jersey community colleges to partner in this endeavor.
  • Facilities

Ocean County College submitted a poster to tell the story of campus efficiency to the annual conference of the National Association of College and University Business Officers held in Montreal from July 16 through 19, 2016.  Poster topicsdepicted different aspects of efficiency and sustainability that improved campus energy and costs, such as operational and strategic planning, major physical plant infrastructure replacement, organic composting, water savings, and utility infrastructure.  The posters were well done, and many people commented on their excellent content.

OCC’s submission, “Energy Security for the Future,” was designed by Ms. Jennifer Kelemen, Assistant Director of Campus Services.  The poster describes why OCC chose co-generation for its campus energy plant.  Appreciation is expressed to Ms. Kelemen for showcasing OCC’s ongoing sustainability efforts.  A copy of OCC’s poster is attached; it is also online at

  • Security

Mr. Frank Iannone, Director of College Safety and Security, is encouraging all students, faculty, and staff to opt in to Ocean County College’s notification system, Viking Alert.  Viking Alert allows designated administrators to send messages instantly and simultaneously to all those registered via mobile phones and email.  Viking Alert will be used to send emergency notifications that are critical to safetyor to relay important information in a timely manner.

OCC students and employees can opt in to OCC’s emergency text system at:

  • The Jay and Linda Grunin Center for the Arts
    • The new CRM system with Patron Technology is proving to be quite successful, providing more effective communication with our patrons, a better way to track ticket sales, and more robust data collection.  Since August 8, 2016, 32 individual donations have been made by patrons through this system.
    • As previously reported, Ocean County College and The Jay and Linda Grunin Center for the Arts will be presenting a humanities project called Beyond the Classroom: Global Education for Girls.  The project is a joint effort among OCC, Georgian Court University, and the Toms River Library.  Other key sponsorsinclude Kean Ocean, the Global Education Committee, Middle Eastern Studies Program, Ocean Pride, EOF, Writing Center, Girl Scouts of Jersey Shore, and Toms River NOW.

The opening lecture will take place in the Gateway Lecture Hall on Monday, October 3, 2016, at 3:00 p.m.  A full listing of events can be seen at  Additionally, artist Mary Mihelic’s work, entitled 53 Running Girls, will be displayed at the Grunin Center, Larson Student Center, Gateway Building, and the Ocean County College Library beginning Wednesday, September 28, 2016.

  • Upcoming shows:
    • Patti LuPone – Saturday, October 1, 2016, at 8:00 p.m.  Limited seating available.
    • Ramsey Lewis and John Pizzarelli – Sunday, October 16, 2016, at 7:30 p.m. The show is over half sold out.
    • Home Free – Sunday and Monday, November 20 and 21, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.  The Sunday show has limited seating available.
    • Arlo Guthrie – Thursday, November 10, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.  This show is over half sold out.
    • Emel Mathlouthi – Thursday, October 13, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.  Firebrand Tunisiansinger, songwriter, guitarist, composer and inheritor of the legacy of American and Arabic protest singers of the 1960’s, Emel Mathlouthi stands with the great divas of the Arab World.  She will also speak with students in an event sponsored by the Middle Eastern and North Africa Club.
    • Urban Bush Women – Thursday, October 27, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.  Interactive and explosive, this group connects music and dance in a way that transforms youwhile you are watching.  This is a must-see dance group.

e-Learning and Learning Enterprises

  • International Partnerships

The e-Learning and Learning Enterprises team is focused this month on the upstartof the OCC-Ain Shams University (ASU)-Kean program, which is scheduled to launchon October 31, 2016, with OCC’s second 7.5 week term.  This program calls for ASU students to enroll in OCC online courses for four semesters, during which they will be simultaneously enrolled in ASU courses in Cairo, Egypt.  The last year is slated to be taught by Kean Online.

Dr. Amr El-Atraby and Dr. Sayed Elkhouly, Ain Shams Dean of Faculty and Commerce and Management Department Chair, respectively, who were OCC’s visitors during the 2016 Fall Colloquium, have reported that the program currently has 80 student applicants for the first cohort, with a goal of 100.

e-Learning is also preparing for the development and submission of a proposal to Egypt’s Minister of Telecommunications, Yasser Elkady, in which OCC would establish an additional location in Cairo’s new Smart Village area.  This proposal is scheduled to be submitted the first week of October.

Additionally, a secondary proposal will be submitted to the University International Rabat in which OCC will aim to become the third party vendor for UIR in helping to establish Morocco’s first online degree program.

Academic Affairs

In order to remain in alignment with current New Jersey Council of County College standards, OCC is undergoing a revision to all official course descriptions.  The Academic Affairs area has been working diligently in order to have the majority of revisions completed by January 2017.  The focus for the revision process has been on the assessment of General Education and the mapping of course objectives to in-course assessment and programmatic assessment.  This initiative will result in long-term benefits to both the College and to the State.

In addition, work is continuing on OCC’s overall curriculum development process, with trainings and workshops for faculty being offered regularly and templates and assistive manuals being created for availability in OceanConnect.

The OCC annual application for the Carl D. Perkins Grant has received Tier 2 Final Approval. This early acceptance bodes well for FY 2017.  A productive year is envisioned in regard to Perkins funding, which will focus on gender equity, tutoring and supplemental instruction, and continual improvement to the inventory of technologyfor CTE programs.

Academic Affairs, working with the Faculty Center for Excellence, hosted over 70 adjunct faculty at the new Adjunct Faculty Institute on August 31, 2016.  The participants met with other faculty in their departments to review course syllabus development, grading rubrics, lab science issues, as well as obtain Canvas training.  In addition, through the Faculty Center for Excellence, Ms. Jane McDonald, College Lecturer II of Social Sciences, and Dr. Marilyn Kralik, College Lecturer II of Arts and Humanities, hosted all Lecturer IIs for a two-day Training Institute on Monday and Tuesday, August 29 and 30, 2016.

  • School of Arts and Humanities
    • Faculty in the School of Arts and Humanities are offering many activities for students this semester:
      • College Lecturer II of Communication/Theatre Paul Chalakani is overseeing two student productions this fall in the Black Box Theatre, “Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead” and “Sylvia.”
      • Assistant Professor of Ceramics Lisa Cecere will be presenting a show of OCC student work from the last four semesters at Georgian Court University.
      • Ms. Jayanti Tamm, Assistant Professor of English and Literature, will continue the 10th year of the Visiting Writers’ Series.
      • English Lecturer II Erica Carboy will continue events to celebrate Banned Books as well as to highlight International Education Week.
      • Dr. Ali Botein-Furrevig is continuing the Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Education Film Series.
      • Dr. David Bordelon, Associate Professor of English, will continue his monthly community book group.
  • In January 2017, Assistant Professor of Communications Gary Shaffer will lead the study abroad trip to London, while Mr. Rob Marchie, History Lecturer II, will be offering the Mexico study abroad trip in March 2017.
  • In terms of curriculum, many faculty have been working on the School’s portion of the campus-wide course description and revision project.  The Interpreter Training Program is working toward specialized accreditation, and Assistant Professor Kathy Basilotto and College Lecturer II Saundra Piscitellihave revamped the curriculum and plan to add a ten-week summer session offering.

The School is moving forward with the Associate in Science degree in Graphic Design.  Art History faculty are preparing for Art History course-level assessment this fall.  Meanwhile, Communications faculty, Philosophy faculty, and Spanish faculty have already begun to prepare for spring course-level assessments.

  • School of Business and Social Sciences
    • Mr. Ghibesi and Ms. Jennifer Barnes, Lecturer II of Political Science, have coordinated a series of events to take place the week of September 19 to 23, 2016, to commemorate Constitution Day.  The events will include various presentations highlighting a diverse cross-section of multidisciplinary topicsrelating to the Constitution.  Presenters include:
      • Assemblyman David Wolfe, who will discuss the upcoming election and the importance of voting;
      • Ms. Mara Brater, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, who will share information about high profile criminal cases in our area and the requirements of the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendments;
      • Ms. Jennifer Barnes, who will lecture on the First and Second Amendments;
      • Dr. Henry Jackson, Executive Director of Academic Success, who will present a lecture highlighting African-Americans and the Fifteenth Amendment;
      • Mr. Jason Ghibesi, who will host a screening and discussion of segments from the PBS Series “Eyes on the Prize”;
      • Professor of Social Sciences Lynn Kenneally, who will present a lecture on the U.S. Supreme Court and the Constitution as a living document;
      • Mr. Edward Kissling, Professor of Business Studies, whose talk will focus on Senator Edmund Ross, the deciding vote in the impeachment acquittal of President Andrew Johnson;
      • Assistant Professor of English and Literature Jayanti Tamm, who will lecture on the First Amendment; and
      • Mr. Kyle Banner, Adjunct Instructor of History, who will present a discussion entitled “Philadelphia, 1787: Inside the Constitutional Convention.”
  • Dr. Rosann Bar, Dean of the School of Business and Social Sciences, Mr. Jason Ghibesi, Ms. Jennifer Barnes, and Ms. Jane MacDonald, along with OCC political science and education students, attended Governor Chris Christie’s Town Hall Meeting on educational issues on September 15, 2016, at the Bayville Elks Lodge.
  • On September 20, 2016, Mr. Mike Senyk, a biologist from the Ocean County Mosquito Commission, will present a lecture entitled “Zika – What You Need to Know to Protect Yourself.”
  • The Education Club, Students Learning about Politics (SLAP), and the School of Business and Social Sciences will be hosting a free showing of “Screenagers: Growing Up in the Digital Age” on September 29, 2016, in the Grunin Center. This will be followed by a discussion of the film by Ms. Tara Chalakani of the Preferred Center for Children and Families.
  • The First Annual Mayors’ Panel, sponsored through the OCC Governmental Affairs Institute and led by Ms. Jennifer Barnes, will be held on October 27, 2016.  More than a dozen mayors from local communities will be on hand to discuss the political process with our students.
  • School of Nursing and Health Sciences
    • The School of Nursing admitted 106 students into the program for the Fall 2016semester.  A total of 324 students are currently enrolled in the program.
    • The Student Nursing Organization, in collaboration with the Ocean County Health Department, will hold a Flu Fair on September 27, 2016, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon in the Health Sciences Building.  The cost is $20 for the vaccine. On September 29, 2016, the Student Nursing Organization, together with the Health Occupations Student Association, will hold a Blood Drive from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Bookstore Conference Rooms.
    • The School of Nursing is collaborating with the Ocean County Health Department and Community Medical Center, a member of the Robert Wood Johnson Barnabas Health Care System, to provide education to nursing students regarding disaster preparedness within the community.  This information is required for nursing students in preparation for the licensure completion examination and will provide support to the community should a disaster affect the Ocean County area.
  • School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics
    • Dr. Mary Ellen Rada and Mr. Vijay Ramdeen, Science College Lecturer IIs, revised the Chemistry Lab Manual, an in-house publication sold in the Bookstore.
    • Assistant Professor of Science Eric Antonelli and Dr. Angel Camilo and Mr. John McElroy, College Lecturer IIs in Biology, worked on lab supplemental materialsfor Biology and Anatomy and Physiology courses.
    • Mr. Edmond Hong, College Lecturer II of Computer Studies, and Dr. Angel Camilo worked with Dr. Marilyn Kralik to develop a Faculty Biography template.  The content from the biographies will be used for faculty webpages on the OCC website along with a faculty directory that will be accessible on OceanConnect.
    • The Community College Mathematics Faculty Roundtable was held at Rowan College at Gloucester County on September 10, 2016.  In attendance were Mathematics Professors Maryann Birdsall, Linda Henderson, Vicki McMillian, and Carolyn Showalter; Mathematics College Lecturer II Krista Camilo; and Mr. Paul Silberquit, Dean of the School of STEM.  OCC was one of five community colleges represented and had the most attendees at the meeting.  The main topics discussed were changes to placement exams (Accuplacer, SAT, and PARCC) and first college-level mathematics courses.
    • STEM Values and STEM Student Expectation flyers were posted in each STEM classroom in the Hiering, Russell, and Technology buildings, and electronic copies were shared, along with STEM Faculty Expectations flyers, with all full-time and part-time faculty/lecturers.  The content of all three flyers was developed by STEM full-time faculty during the 2015-2016 academic year, and the flyers were created by Ms. Nicole Howard, Graphics Specialist in College Relations.
  • Student Academic Services

Debuting in its first semester as a required course for all students seeking associate degrees in general studies or liberal arts, FYES 155, First-Year Experience Seminar,has 55 sections scheduled this Fall 2016 semester and approximately 1,200 studentsenrolled. Fourteen instructors, who are new to teaching the course, are joining 18 veteran Student Success instructors to participate in an active online discussion and resource-sharing community during the semester.  Collaborative conversationsamong these instructors center on the importance of promoting active learning, self-reflection, and wise decision-making; engaging students in the culture and events of Ocean County College; and supporting student persistence and degree completion through skill-building and resilience coaching.  The successes of the FYES students will be shared as they progress through the semester, and research is being undertaken to determine how to best measure the longitudinal success of this first cohort of FYES students.

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