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July 23, 2020

Dr. Larson’s July 2020 Report to the OCC Board of Trustees

OCC_President Dr. Larson


Dr. Henry Jackson, Executive Director of Academic Success, was recently named the 2020 NROC Ambassador of the Year.  This award is presented to an NROC member who has actively engaged to improve student success.  Specifically, NROC noted Dr. Jackson’s unwavering focus on opening doors for first-generation college students through collaborations with secondary school partners.  As a result of Dr. Jackson’s efforts, 18 of Ocean County’s 19 high schools are now partnering with OCC for students to earn college credit for courses taken while in high school.  Discussions are currently underway for partnering with the 19th high school.

NROC is a national organization whose mission is to help meet society’s need for access to effective, high-quality, educational opportunities in an era of rapid economic, social, and personal change.  NROC denotes:

NETWORK | Educational institutions benefit from working together.

RESOURCES | Educators are empowered by high-quality, multi-media content and applications.

OPEN | Membership keeps costs low for institutions, and free for individuals.

COLLEGE and CAREER | Committed to helping students pursue academic and life success.

We are exceptionally proud of Dr. Jackson’s achievements and NROC’s recognition.

Academic Affairs

Healthcare Students Return to Campus

Several Spring Semester noncredit Allied Health courses returned to campus in early July for students to complete their hands-on skill development.  This group of health care students is the first student cohort back to campus since classes were moved to remote instruction due to the pandemic. The group represents our pioneer students, forging the way while following strict health and safety guidelines and giving valuable feedback about their return-to-campus experience.  The students are studying competencies necessary for national credentialing exams in Certified Clinical Medical Assistant, Phlebotomy Technician, EKG Technician, and Medical Billing and Coding Specialist.  By August, most of the nearly 70 students will pass these rigorous exams and move on to the local healthcare workforce, where they are in great demand.

Career Exploration Goes Virtual

The first virtual six-week career exploration and entrepreneurial skills development training will launch in mid-July with approximately 20 students.  The students will also participate in a parallel summer student job shadow experience organized by Ocean County PIC.

Perkins V Grant Needs Assessment Completed

For the FY21 Perkins V Grant, officially titled “The Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act,” the College underwent a deep analysis of its countywide data, the results of which were the basis for future planning decisions for Career and Technical Education (CTE) at OCC.  This comprehensive needs assessment included in-depth meetings with all post-secondary institutions in Ocean County, all New Jersey community colleges, multiple OCC departments, the CTE advisory board, local industry, and, of course, all faculty, lecturers, and administrators representing each of OCC’s 20+ CTE programs.  These meetings were highly productive and led to multiple new initiatives, innovative ideas, and real strategies for bridging gaps with both secondary institutions and industries in Ocean County. 

Articulation Efforts

Work continues to operationalize OCC’s Memorandum of Understanding with New Jersey City University to market and recruit for new 3 + 1 agreements for fall 2020, as well as with Southern New Hampshire University to expand a 3 + 1 partnership for additional degree pathways.  Plans to operationalize partnerships with New Jersey City University and William Paterson University for the Egyptian Special Programs are also moving forward.

Pathways to Credentials

The Pathways to Credentials team attended the Center for Occupational Research and Development (CORD) Technical Assistance opening orientation session and has had several meetings with CORD’s coach.  The team continues to work on Action Plans to develop stackable credentials that incorporate apprenticeship/work-based learning opportunities for proposed new programming options in Sustainability and Industrial Hygiene at OCC.

School of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics


Dean of STEM Sylvia Riviello is pleased to announce that, under the supervision of College Lecturer II in Engineering Pam Bogdan, all School of STEM instructors have access to Screencast-O-Matic.   This tool has many features, with one of the most important being the ease with which it allows the addition of closed captioning to any video recordings posted to CANVAS.   Closed captioning is an ADA compliance requirement and must be included in all video/audio postings.

Potential Collaborative Activities

In anticipation of the signing of the new Education Partnership Agreements between Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) and Ocean County College, below are several of the potential collaborative activities and projects:

  • NAWCAD funding contribution to the roadshow presentations for high schools and middle schools
  • Fall/Spring “Capstone” Project for the OCC Engineering Club – Mentoring/Tooling/ Resource/Presentation on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst
  • Creation of simulation materials for remote learning

Engineering Individual Design Competition

OCC student Derek Alton, winner of the Spring Semester Engineering Department Individual Design Competition, is working directly with Ms. Bogdan throughout the summer to refine his design in anticipation of creating a prototype during the Fall Semester.   Each semester, OCC students are eligible to submit designs to earn funding to build a prototype.  This Fall, the competition will be expanded to both high school and middle school students.  The anticipated prizes will include engineering, technology, and readiness-course tuition vouchers.

Virtual Science Presentation Held for 4H Club

On June 8, 2020, Assistant Professor of Science Eric Antonelli and Dr. Angel Camilo, College Lecturer II in Biology, held a virtual presentation for a local 4H Club led by Ms. Laura Wagner, one of the School’s adjunct faculty.  Various types of hydroponic systems and their advantages and disadvantages were discussed.  The participants set up hydroponic systems of their own and will be reporting their progress over the summer.  Some of the systems demonstrated include window method, deep-water culture, and ebb and flow.

OCC Students are Winners at HOSA’s Virtual International Leadership Conference

Mr. Scott Farrell, College Lecturer II in Chemistry and HOSA Advisor, announced that HOSA’s Virtual International Leadership Conference was recently held.  The top 10 contestants in each event are recognized, and the top 3 receive awards.  OCC had two winners this year.  Genavive Napolilo finished in second place in biomedical laboratory science, and Sarah Sywanycz placed in the top eight in pathophysiology.

  • Genavive graduated in May with an A.S. Degree in General Studies-Science.  She was the president of the HOSA Chapter and a member of both the Science Club and Phi Theta Kappa.  She was also a student lab assistant in the Microbiology Lab under the supervision of Ms. Barbara Collins, STEM Laboratories Coordinator.  Genavive plans on continuing her education to obtain a B.S. degree in Biochemistry and then go on to a physical therapy school. 
  • Sarah will be starting her second year at OCC in September majoring in General Studies-Science.  She will be the HOSA Chapter president.  Sarah was recommended to Ms. Diane DeFilippo, Academic Advisor, to become a Chemistry tutor this year.

National Cybersecurity Training and Education Center

College Lecturer II in Computer Science Ken Michalek is excited to announce OCC as a new member of the National Cybersecurity Training and Education Center (NCyTE – pronounced ‘insight’).  The NCyTE Center is focused on building a comprehensive network of higher education institutions, businesses, and government agencies dedicated to developing and maintaining a robust cybersecurity workforce.  The Center is especially committed to improving the quantity and quality of existing cybersecurity resources and building upon those resources to develop effective training and teaching modules for students.  By concentrating on student development, professional development, and curriculum development, revision, and dissemination, the NCyTE Center incorporates effective outreach efforts to raise awareness and build viable partnerships among academia and industry in the cybersecurity field.  Additional information on the NCyTE Center can be found at

Phi Theta Kappa Recruits New Student Officers for 2020-21

Dr. William Rickert, Professor of Mathematics and Advisor to PTK, is pleased to announce the recruitment of four students as PTK officers for 2020-21.  The students have been attending a virtual Regional Honors Institute alongside Dr. Rickert.  They met each Monday night for one month.  The final Monday discussion focused on the College Project to be developed for 2020-21.

Five-Week Boot Camps for Students

Ms. Julia Kim and Mr. Sam Pinkava, both College Lecturers in Mathematics, are running five-week summer boot camps.  Ms. Kim developed and is currently offering a camp for new students to help them prepare for Fall Semester.  A second camp, developed and run by Mr. Pinkava, is for students who failed or withdrew from MATH 023, Algebra Basics, in the 2019-20 academic year.  Results will be shared at the completion of the courses. 

School of Nursing and Health Sciences

Scholarships and Awards

Over $16,000 in scholarships and awards was presented to current Nursing students and Nursing graduates.  Recipients included:

  • Carluccio, Leone, Dimon, Doyle & Sacks, L.L.C., and Stephan and Judith Leone
  • Scholarship:  Lisa McGrath
  • Kotzas-Demos Scholarships:  Angela Plewa and Wesley Tanner
  • James F. Foley Nursing Scholarship:  Melissa Criscuolo
  • Jacqueline S. Baer Memorial Nursing Scholarship:  Alexandra Urban
  • Dorothea Brayden Johnson Memorial Scholarship:  Megan Bacorn
  • Dr. Jesse Schulman Nursing Scholarships:  Renee Emanuel, Yorly Mata, and Kayla Osborne
  • Janis Neary-Zimmerman Memorial Nursing Scholarship:  Alexandra Urban
  • Peter and Mildred Galanti Scholarships:  Veronica Costanzo and Samantha Levan
  • Pilot Sisters Survivorship Award:  Louis Bruno
  • Gus Demme Award:  Jason Hisey
  • The New Jersey League for Nursing Award:  Deanna Morrison

Summer Reading Selected for Returning Nursing Students

The book, “Brain on Fire:  My Month of Madness,” by Susannah Cahalan has been selected by lecturers as the summer read for returning Nursing students.  This book is a memoir of a young woman who was misdiagnosed with various mental health disorders but was actually suffering from a rare autoimmune disorder that affects the brain.  The book is incorporated throughout the curriculum as students discuss the healthcare system, nursing practice, professionalism, ethics, and patient care.

Nursing Program Projects and Committees

Lecturers continued to meet throughout the month to work on projects required to maintain the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) standards.  The Assessment and Outcomes Committee and the Nursing Curriculum Committee have also met during the month to review program outcomes and implement changes to improve student completion rates and licensure examination passing rates.

Nursing Program Preparations for Fall 2020

  • The School of Nursing is in the process of admitting 110 new students into the Fall 2020 Nursing program.
  • School of Nursing representatives have been meeting with clinical agencies to plan for students to return to acute care facilities for clinical experiences this Fall semester.
  • The School of Nursing is making plans for students to return to campus to practice and demonstrate competency of hands-on skills within the laboratory setting prior to practicing in clinical agencies.  The plan to return to campus is based on the guidelines issued by the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education and incorporates the Center for Disease Control and New Jersey Department of Health standards and regulations.

School of Business and Social Sciences

Social Sciences Club

Dr. Patricia Gianotti, College Lecturer II in Addictions Studies, and Dr. Margaret Maghan, College Lecturer II in Psychology, have announced the newly formed Social Sciences Club.  This collaborative effort involves the merging of three separate student clubs, the Social Work Club, the Psychology Club, and the Addictions Studies Club.  These three separate student clubs will now work together on several larger community service projects throughout the academic year.  The intent of this joint venture is to foster a collegial relationship between students in our various social sciences degree programs as a means to expand their understanding of other domains of practice and carry-over into their chosen professional fields.  Each club will continue to maintain their independent club status and budgets.

Efforts to Assist OCC Families in Need

Dr. Margaret Maghan has announced that the collaborative effort between various OCC departments and Fulfill, the Foodbank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties, has continued to provide crisis relief boxes to OCC students and their families who are experiencing food insecurity and a need for personal care items.  More than 20 boxes were distributed on the campus last week.  As stated in the Governor’s Executive Order, food banks, food pantries, and other feeding agencies will continue to be an essential component in the State of New Jersey’s crisis management response to COVID-19.

Virtual National Leadership Online Experience:  Phi Beta Lambda

Mr. Sean Bips, College Lecturer II in Hospitality, Recreation, and Tourism Management, announced that five members of OCC’s Phi Beta Lambda Chapter – Future Business Leaders of America, participated in this year’s virtual National Leadership Online Experience.  This virtual format was created as a replacement for the cancellation of the annual National Leadership Conference that was originally scheduled to have taken place this summer in Salt Lake City.  Over 10,000 middle school, high school, and collegiate members participated virtually in general sessions, workshops, and numerous business category competitions. 

The five OCC students who participated in this year’s virtual competition were James Vitkuske, Antony Braaten, Meighlan Heath, Drew Murphy, and Kenneth Paulauskas.  Competition categories included Accounting Principles, Accounting Analysis, and Decision Making, Management Concepts, Retail Management, Computer Concepts, Public Speaking, Hospitality Management, and Organizational Behavior and Leadership.  Students Drew Murphy (for Hospitality Management) and Kenneth Paulauskas (for Accounting Analysis and Decision Making) both moved forward to the final round of the competition. 

School of Arts and Humanities

Virtual Summer Institute for Educators Offered by the National Gallery of Art

Professor of Humanities Marilyn Kralik and College Lecturer II in Humanities Stephanie Shestakow attended the Summer Institute for Educators 2020 offered by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., held from July 6 to 10, 2020.  This year’s institute was online and featured synchronous events and asynchronous and self-paced components.  It explored research-based Artful Thinking Routines, best practices, teaching strategies, and opportunities to engage with other educators as the attendees interacted virtually with some of the great works of art on display at the National Gallery of Art.

Summer Training Sessions

  • Deans Heidi Sheridan and Rosann Bar presented Designing Assignments for Remote Learning on July 22, 2020.  This virtual training session was offered as part of the 2020 Summer Virtual Professional Development Series for OCC staff, faculty, and lecturers.  The session explored how to develop creative assignments for a remote teaching environment and targeted assignments that meet learning objectives and minimize the possibilities for plagiarism.
  • College Lecturer II in English Richard Carr will also be presenting a training session as part of the 2020 Virtual Professional Development series.  His session on July 29, 2020, is entitled Creating Your Own YouTube Channel and Recording YouTube Videos with Closed Captions.  This virtual training session is designed to cover everything from how to get a channel started to the use of some more advanced tools in YouTube to create videos that will hold the attention of students while maintaining intellectual integrity and access for all.

American Sign Language-English Interpreting Program

Assistant Professor of Humanities Kathleen Basilotto reported that seven recent graduates of the American Sign Language-English Interpreting Program (ASL-ITP) passed the National Interpreter Certification Written Knowledge Exam.  One additional graduate is scheduled to take the exam in August.  Additionally, one of the program graduates was accepted in the Master of Arts in Interpretation degree program at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C.  Congratulations to all of the program graduates.

New Jersey City University’s Community College Showcase

Ms. Samantha Glassford, College Lecturer II in English, and Ms. Veronica Guevara-Lovgren, Assistant Dean of the School of Arts and Humanities, will be presenting on July 28, 2020, at New Jersey City University’s Community College Showcase:  Are You Student Ready?  This conference will be taking place virtually, and participants will learn the process of how the School of Arts and Humanities reframed student readiness to make informed data-driven decisions regarding the English Accelerated Learning Program.

Finance and Administration

OCC has formed a committee led by Executive Vice President of Finance and Administration Sara Winchester to prepare for a limited, safe return to campus in Fall 2020.  The group held its first organizational meeting in June and will meet weekly on campus for the next few months.  The committee is charged with assessing COVID-19 guidance and conditions and developing appropriate actions and protocols that can be implemented to provide for a safe return to campus.  The primary focus is on planning for Nursing and certain lab courses that will meet on campus.  All labs have been assessed by Facilities to determine the maximum number of students that can be in the lab at one time while maintaining the required social distancing.  An online health questionnaire has been developed, and students will be required to complete a form before every visit to campus.  Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for students and staff has been ordered.  Stations will be set up at the entrances to open buildings where staff will take temperatures and record student attendance.  More than 12 members representing various departments are participating on the committee, and Kean University is also represented.

Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Funds

A total of $68.8 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds was allocated to New Jersey’s public colleges and universities to help institutions continue providing high-quality educational services to students amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  Of the $68.8 million, OCC was awarded $757,932.  The funding is to be used to offset institutional expenses incurred as a result of the pandemic. GEER funds may be used to cover the costs of expenditures incurred on or after March 13, 2020, when a national emergency was declared.

State Operating Aid

The Legislature’s Supplemental Budget Bill appropriated $13.79 million in operating aid to community colleges for the fifth quarter of FY2020 and allocated an additional $2.975 million in operating aid for community colleges for the fifth quarter from the state’s Supplemental Workforce Fund for Basic Skills.  As a result, the total amount of operating aid for community colleges for the fifth quarter of FY2020 is $16.7 million.  The new total allocation amounts to 50% of normal quarterly operating aid.  For OCC, budgeted State Aid for the first quarter of FY2021 will be reduced from approximately $2,010,546 to $1,005,273, a loss of approximately $1 million for the three-month period.

The supplemental bill also appropriated $10 million for the Community College Opportunity Grant (CCOG) program, ensuring that the program will continue with the same parameters as last year.

Mr. Mark Wilson, Executive Director, Cultural Programs and Partnerships, will be leaving OCC at the end of the month to join Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, as Executive Director of the Zoellner Arts Center.  It will be difficult to replace Mr. Wilson, who has done a wonderful job not only running the operation, but also improving the quality of performances through the creative use of the original Grunin gift and cultivation of additional donors.  The Grunin Foundation has generously offered to fund a national search for the next leader of the Grunin Center for the Arts at Ocean County College.  With the Performing Arts Academy now on campus, there are even higher aspirations for the further development of the arts at Ocean County College.  We are very grateful for the outstanding support the Grunin Foundation continues to provide, and we are confident that, with its help, an equally talented successor will be recruited.

Ocean County College Foundation

Summer Scholarship Celebration

On Friday, August 7, 2020, at 6 p.m., please join us for a live-streaming, virtual Summer Scholarship Celebration from any electronic device at  Appreciation is expressed to the already committed sponsors and supporters.  The evening will be complete with a brief but entertaining program, celebrity guest cameos, board member watch parties, and a live band.  Donations during the event will be encouraged at


The Fall Scholarship Application period remains open through August 14, 2020.  This Fall, for the first time, Jump Start and Academy Grants will be available to students.  Roll-over applications from Fall to Spring semesters will be piloted, and expedited scholarship awards will ensure Foundation funding is applied to student accounts at the start of the semester, in advance of the census date.  Additional information is available at

Social Justice

The Foundation continues its participation in the Social Justice Task Force spearheaded by the Grunin Foundation to bring together thought leaders from the higher education institutions of Ocean and Monmouth Counties, including Georgian Court University, Monmouth University, Brookdale Community College, and Ocean County College.  Among those representing the College are Dr. Jerry Racioppi, Vice President of Student Affairs; Dr. Henry Jackson, Executive Director of Academic Success; and Mr. Ken Malagiere, Executive Director of the Foundation.  This undertaking is being approached with great humility as well as with acknowledgment that it will be difficult and change will not come quickly, but the members of the task force are committed to working together in the belief that education is the means by which change can occur.  This task force will quickly grow in scale as the impact is identified.  Regular updates will follow.

Food Insecurity and Fulfill

While the Foundation continues to assist in the distribution of crisis boxes to students in need, the College coordinated a donation of all remaining frozen and shelf-stable food to Fulfill, the Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties, on July 14, 2020, as the Student Center will remain closed for the near term.

College Relations

Web Services

College Relations collaborated with the Admissions Department and the HUB to create an online resource that helps current and prospective students understand how remote classes and services work.  This very valuable resource, Remote Classes and Services FAQ, became one of the most visited web pages in the week since its launch, with over 30% of visitors returning to the page to utilize the resource again.  It can be viewed at our Classes and Services FAQ page.

Mr. Nicolaus Burr, Social Media/Web Developer, and Ms. Maureen Conlon, Associate Director of Web Services, collaborated with the OCC Foundation to develop a social media campaign that honors and shows appreciation to the sponsors of this year’s Virtual Scholarship Celebration.  In addition to recognizing these important contributions that support the Foundation’s mission, this campaign generated 40% more engagement than a typical event post.


The Grants Department worked collaboratively with the Grunin Center to submit grant proposals and was successful in receiving the following funded awards for the period July 1, 2020, through June 30, 2021:

  • $3,150 from the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation: American Patchwork Project – Funding will support bringing the American Patchwork Quartet to the Grunin Center.
  • $1,400 from the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation: Anti-Bullying Campaign – Funding will support bringing Drew Dollaz to the Grunin Center for an Anti-Bullying Series.
  • $50,000 from the National Endowment for the Arts: Dance Series – Funding support to bring dance artists in for classroom collaboration and Grunin Center performances.


Blackbaud Software 

Ms. Kimberly Malony, Alumni and Advancement Director, has improved the data health of OCC’s alumni/donor database, Raiser’s Edge.  New policies and processes to record more detailed giving history and behaviors have been created and implemented.  Collecting and entering this type of information will be a regular practice to help better track giving behavior and develop donor solicitations for events and for annual support.

Human Resources

The Office of Human Resources continues to fully support supervisors and staff in the current remote operating environment.  Employee Assistance Resources have been made available in the form of webinars, articles, and the normal access to trained counselors, all through Preferred Behavioral Health.  Additionally, the Human Resources website has a section devoted to COVID-19 resources.

The office continues to work closely with furloughed and retiring employees who have required special assistance in relation to questions regarding their pensions, benefits, and unemployment claims.

Training Sessions

Below is a summary of training and development initiatives that have taken place in the last month:

  • CARE Reporting
  • Managing Stress in the Workplace
  • Records Retention
  • Managing Your Team Remotely
  • Stress Management

There were 71 employees registered for these trainings, and 44 employees attended.

Performance Evaluations FY2020

  • College Lecturers:  Self-evaluations were submitted to supervisors by July 1, 2020; evaluations are due to Human Resources by August 1, 2020; and Performance Programs must be submitted to Human Resources by August 24, 2020.
  • Non-Affiliated Hourly Employees, Support Staff Association Employees, and Administrators:  Supervisor/Employee evaluation meetings should have been completed by June 26, 2020; employee acknowledgment of evaluations by June 30, 2020; and final review by Human Resources by July 15, 2020.

Human Resources Information System

Database cleanup is ongoing with many inactive records being appropriately marked and stored.  A regular schedule for record deactivation has been implemented.

Annual employment agreements for Non-Affiliated Administrators, Non-Affiliated Hourly Employees, and College Lecturers were distributed during the first week of July.  Language revisions and a technical issue delayed their issuance.


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 June 19, 2020, through August 13, 2020.

Student Affairs


Advising Appointments

Students scheduled over 300 appointments from June 16 to July 17, 2020, through open advising appointments online and via the HUB.  The goal of online appointment scheduling is to make advising accessible to all students who wish to speak with an advisor in this remote environment.  These appointments are in addition to regularly scheduled advisor appointments maintained by advisors weekly.

Proactive Advising

The Advising Office has continued to partner with the HUB to proactively reach out to students not yet registered for Fall semester.

Advisors are currently executing a weekly communication plan to assigned advisees, as well as additional outreach organized and scheduled on a weekly basis.  Most recently, advisors have undertaken outreach to students who responded to a “Reggie” survey regarding Fall registration and requested assistance with course selection.  Advisors are currently reaching out to over 230 students via phone and email, with the goal of assisting the students with registration.  Advising will work with the HUB to determine outcomes of this effort.

Information Sessions

Virtual New Student Information Sessions were executed on June 30 and July 8, 2020, and a NJ STARS Information Session was offered by NJ STARS Coordinator Jennifer Kipp on July 1, 2020, with 20-30 students registered for each event.  Additional sessions will run throughout the summer and early fall.  Transfer Coordinator Laura Wills held a transfer information session on July 13, 2020, specifically geared to students interested in transfer to Kean Ocean, Stockton University, and Rutgers University.  An additional general transfer information session is planned for August 14, 2020.

Career Services

Career Services has continued serving students and employers through remote operations and will be conducting a joint Career and Transfer Webinar in August.  Services provided include Career Counseling; Online Career Assessments and Review; Resume, Cover Letter, and LinkedIn Profile Writing; and Internship and Employment Opportunity Searches.  

Office of Disability Services

The Office of Disability Services continues to review new student requests for reasonable accommodations as identified under the ADA, with a goal of reviewing all requests prior to the start of the Fall semester.  Procedures guiding the process are housed on OCC’s webpage,  The office continues to facilitate communication efforts with county high schools in an attempt to transition students with disabilities to appropriate services at the higher education level.

Staff from the Office of Disability Services attended a virtual conversation with disability rights activist Judith Heumann.  The event was sponsored by the University of Maryland’s Commission on Disability Issues and celebrated the 30th anniversary of the American with Disabilities Act.  Ms. Heumann, an internationally recognized leader in the disability rights community and a lifelong civil rights advocate, helped pave the way for the passage of ADA and served as Special Advisor on Disability Rights for the U.S. State Department under the Obama administration.  She was one of the main organizers of the 1977 HEW 504 sit-in, where nearly 150 disability rights activists demanded that President Carter implement Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. 

Veterans Military and Resource Center

The Veterans Military and Resource Center (VMRC) is continuing outreach to all entities and partners gained in the 2019-20 year to advocate for the Center’s exceptional remote access capabilities, as well as to maintain our communal standards of excellence to public efforts and the Military and Veteran community.

Below is a summary of VMRC’s accomplishments and activities:

  • Enrollment
    • Fall 2018 – 128 military-affiliated students
    • Fall 2019 – 116 military-affiliated students
    • Fall 2020 – 332 military-affiliated students to date
    • Represents an increase of 158.65% from Fall 2018 to Fall 2020, to date
    • Goal for Fall 2021 – 500 military-affiliated students
  • Over 700 hours of community outreach and volunteering
  • Partnerships Established
    • Ocean County Military Support Committee
    • Recalibrate
    • Apache Cross-Fit
    • Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, NSA – Lakehurst Navy Detachment
    • Congressman Andy Kim of District 3 and Armed Services Committee attachment in Washington D.C.
    • National Student Veterans of America Organization
    • S.A.L.U.T.E. Honor Society
    • American Legion Post 129 of Toms River and VFW Post 6063 of Toms River
    • Hero’s on the Water Organization
    • Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office
    • Vetwork of Toms River
    • Pure Yoga of Toms River
    • MA Deuce Deuce Organization
    • Warhorse Scuba
  • 1,129 persons visited the campus for VMRC events, with an additional 979 sign-ins to VMRC
  • Awards and Recognition
    • Ranked #1 in New Jersey for Community Colleges and Veteran Programs
    • Ranked #8 in the United States for Community Colleges and Veteran Programs
    • Mayor’s Certificate of Achievement on Community Success and Outreach
    • Congressional Certificate of Recognition on Excellence and Service to the Military and Veterans Community
    • Raised $15,000 and received $9,800 in donations of art, memorabilia, Prisoner of War and Missing in Action Dedication Chair, Congressional ceremonial flags, and technologies and entertainment for the Veterans and Military Resource Center

Southern Education Center

  • Since mid-June, Ms. Michele Marcum, Senior Student Services Technician, and Mr. Jeff Kurz, Student Services and Recruiting Specialist have assisted the HUB and the Advising Office, respectively, with the caseload of students preparing for the Fall 2020 semester.
  • Mr. James Hauenstein, Director of the Southern Education Center, attended the 2020 Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education Virtual Conference, which focused on Student Success in Higher Education.  Over three days, from June 28 to July 1, 2020, numerous virtual presentations focused on First Generation Student Success; Assessment, Persistence, and Data Analytics; Closing the Achievement Gap; and Student Financial Wellness.  The conference presenters utilized a virtual platform to replicate the face-to-face presentations that were cancelled due to COVID-19.
  • The SEC team has finalized its review for the Planning and Budget Committee of progress made towards meeting this year’s goals as well as established new goals for the future.  Additionally, the proposed Spring 2021 schedule for classes at the SEC has been provided to the Academic administrators.  In recommending the Spring 2021 course schedule, the SEC team remembered the student recommendation from the 2018-19 Noel Levitz Student Satisfaction Inventory, “More variety in class offerings…”  Following a review of the data, courses were added that might increase the likelihood of participation by students residing in southern Ocean County.

Financial Aid

New Jersey State Aid

Governor Phil Murphy signed a three-month spending plan on June 30, 2020, which will get the state through the fifth quarter ending on September 30, 2020.  For higher education, the budget maintains tuition assistance programs for post-secondary students, including Tuition Assistance Grant (TAG), Educational Opportunity Fund (EOF), and Community College Opportunity Grant (CCOG) grants, at FY2020 funding levels.  All of these state aid programs will continue to be funded and effective for Fall 2020.  New Jersey Student Tuition Assistance Reward Scholarship (NJSTARS) funding also remains intact.

CARES Funding

As of July 18, 2020, CARES Act funding was awarded to OCC students as follows:

  • Total students – 808
  • Total funding – $839,595
  • Spring 2020 – $758,837
  • Summer 2020 – $21,000
  • Fall 2020 – $59,758


  • The HUB has been working hard to assist and register students for the upcoming terms.  With the help of volunteers from across campus, as well as student workers, the HUB has been responding to new student inquiries and new student applicants within the same day, even while remote.
  • Through OCC’s chatbot, “Reggie,” student surveys have been issued to determine whether students will be returning in the Fall and if they need additional assistance from Financial Aid, Advising, or other areas.  Team members have found that the concierge services provided by “Reggie” has been successful in terms of registering students and student engagement.
  • Ocean County College was recently a sponsor of the Manchester Township High School student Prom for the Class of 2020, allowing the Admissions team to safely engage with over 170 high school seniors.
  • Vice President of Student Affairs Gerald Racioppi, Executive Director of Student Services AJ Trump, and Executive Director of Enrollment Services Sheenah Hartigan presented a virtual webinar on “Proactive Enrollment Processes” on June 29, 2020, to 110 participants for the New Jersey Council of County Colleges.  Discussions on OCC’s innovative approach to engaging with and enrolling students received high praise from sister schools.

e-Learning and Learning Enterprises

Course Design

The Instructional Design and Technology Team continues to move forward with course development for Spring 2021.  Courses for Fall 2020 passed Quality Assurance Review and will be used at the start of the semester. The unit continues to work closely with Academic Deans and the Library to find Open Educational Recourses (OER) and low-cost course materials.

Six courses were developed using OER for the Fall 2020 development schedule.  An additional eight courses will be developed using OER for the Spring 2021 schedule.  This does not include courses that are being redeveloped using low-cost materials ($50.00 or less). 


The e-Learning pilot of Honorlock is going well, and there are no issues with its implementation. The department created an Honorlock resource web page for the online students.  The department is now planning for the Fall term; over 200 online course sections will be proctored.

Student Engagement

There are 63 participants in the sixty-day trial of VoiceThread, which is a learning tool used to enhance student engagement and online presence in both online and traditional (F2F) courses.  This trial allows faculty, lecturers, and staff the opportunity to build VoiceThreads and test the software in a Canvas Sandbox course.  A kick-off meeting took place on Thursday, July 9, 2020, to learn more about the tool, as well as take part in a demonstration by Ms. Lisa Barry, VoiceThread Representative.  A survey will be sent to all participants towards the end of the trial period to obtain feedback on the software, which will be taken into consideration as to if the College should move forward with purchasing an institutional license for the software.  If survey results are positive, and the College would like to purchase the software, depending on the timeframe, instructors may be able to use VoiceThread in their 2020 fall courses.  The Instructional Design Team, however, may not have enough time to implement VoiceThread into the actual design of online courses. 

Student Canvas Orientation Page

Educational Technologist Eric Daniels is working on updating and modifying the current Canvas Orientation page for students, which is on the OCC website.  This page provides an overview of Canvas, OCC’s Learning Management System (LMS), as well as video resources on how to access and log in to Canvas and how to navigate the LMS.  Mr. Daniels is also working with College Relations to have this page more accessible to students when visiting the OCC webpage.

CARES Act Personnel

e-Learning recently hired two part-time Instructional Designers, Ms. Elizabeth Metzger and Mr. Miguel Suarez, with CARES Act funding, to assist in course development and maintenance, as well as with special projects, such as working with the STEM Department to reduce the cost of online science courses utilizing Hands-On-Labs (HOL).  This requires working with STEM Subject Matter Experts to redesign the online course lab experiments.

International Education:

Dr. Howaida Wahby Eraky began her new position as e-Learning Assistant Dean of International Programs.  Her contributions have benefitted e-Learning’s efforts with the current cohort programs, the Special Programs, and the OCC/ NJCU project in Egypt.

Current programs

In cooperation with OCC’s two consultants in Egypt, Dr. Wahby Eraky created an exit survey for Cohort 1 students who graduated from the Ocean/Kean/Ain Shams program in May.  The Cohort 1 exit survey elicited students’ opinions about the program and their recommendations for improvement for OCC, Kean University, and Ain Shams University courses, instructors, facilitators, and coordinators.  Ms. Enjee Auda, Student Services Coordinator, and Ms. Rehab Abdelrazek, Office Coordinator, collected the surveys from the students, and the team qualitatively analyzed their answers.  The responses indicate a high level of satisfaction with the program. 

The team also created and administered a satisfaction survey for the current three cohorts (Cohort 2, Cohort 3, and Cohort 4) and is currently analyzing the results.  The survey covered OCC’s efforts in orientation sessions, Canvas trainings, communication with instructors, areas of success, and areas that need improvements.  It also elicited feedback about the onsite ASU facilitators’ efforts.  The responses are still being collected and analyzed by team members.  The general results of all surveys will be shared with the Board members in August.

The team is already working on plans for transitioning part of its Fall 2020 efforts in Egypt to be performed virtually.  For the new fall 2020 cohort recruitment, a series of three marketing webinars is being prepared with plans to start on August 11, 2020.  The webinars will include presentations and orientations about both the Kean/Ocean/ASU Program and the Special Programs.  The team members collaborated with Ms. Jan Kirsten, Executive Director of College Relations, in planning the advertising of the webinars through the month of July for the webinars that will be delivered in August.

The OCC, Kean University, and Ain Shams University coordinators are evaluating the current program and seeking ways to improve it.  They are revisiting the sequencing of the current program for Cohorts 3, Cohort 4, and Cohort 5, which will start Fall 2020.

Special Programs

In preparation for the Special Programs, Ms. Eileen Schilling, Executive Director of Academic Assessment, and Dr. Maysa Hayward, Associate Vice President of International Programs, formed Microsoft Team Groups on OCC’s shared drive to allow for all OCC, Kean University, William Paterson University, and New Jersey City University deans to review programs and edit suggested course sequences.

In addition, Dr. Wahby Eraky is working with Dr. Maysa Hayward on operational procedures for the upcoming Special Programs in Egypt.  The draft combines OCC policies with those of the Egyptian affiliate universities.  The regulation document will include rules such as acceptance requirements, operational procedures, and course sequences and descriptions.


OCC’s team is collaborating with New Jersey City University and the Modern English School (MES), the private investor in Egypt, on the OCC/NJCU extension in Egypt.

Ms. Sara Winchester, Mr. James White, Chief Financial Officer of NJCU, and the financial team from MES in Egypt are all working on the financial model for this program.   Several meetings were held with all financial team members to discuss various models that satisfy the costs of the three entities.  The projected start date for this project is Fall 2020.

Going Forward

July has been a busy month for the International team with the evaluation of some cultural challenges hindering our efforts in Egypt.  Under direction from Dr. Eileen Garcia, Vice President of e-Learning and Learning Enterprises, the team started to work on ways to facilitate processes, such as student applications.  In reviewing OCC’s online application, many items were identified that are not applicable to Egyptian students.

Accordingly, Dr. Wahby Eraky drafted a new application to be used by the students in Egypt.  The new application would eventually facilitate the registration and payment of Egyptian students.  The draft is currently under review by Ms. Sheena Hartigan.

Required Reporting Statistics

Board of Trustees Meeting

July 23, 2020

The following has been prepared for presentation to the Ocean County College Board of Trustees, for its regular meeting. This report consists of all offenses defined as reportable crimes under the federal Jeanne Clery Act, fires, and other emergencies, which occurred on campus during the reporting period of 6/19/2020 through 7/13/2020.

1. A count and classification of all criminal incidents (defined as reportable crimes under the federal Jeanne Clery Act) which occurred on campus and which were recorded by campus security, campus security authority (CSA), or local police departments.

Date Crime Summary Status
Occurred: Reported: *** NOTHING TO REPORT ***
Occurred: Reported:

2. A list of campus alerts, threats, or emergencies that occurred on campus.

Date Alert/Threat Summary Status
N/A None

3. A count and classification of all fire incidents that occurred on campus and which were recorded by campus security and local fire departments.

Date Fire Incident Summary Status
N/A None

Respectfully Submitted,

John A Lopez, Director of Security

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