President Schilling’s Board Report for May 14, 2019

The following is a report to members of the North Orange County Community College District Board of Trustees.

Presented by Cypress College President JoAnna Schilling, Ph.D.

on May 14, 2019

As another academic year comes to a close, we are busy celebrating the many accomplishments of our students, supported by our committed staff and faculty. I am proud to report the following activities and achievements at Cypress College.

May is Foster Youth Awareness Month and the Guardian Scholars, a program that provides wrap around services to current and former foster youth at Cypress, is highlighting the challenges that foster youth face throughout their lifetime. As part of our awareness campaign, our Guardian Scholars program will be posting signage along the Gateway Plaza with data collected nationwide, as well as anonymous stories that have been shared by the foster youth that attend Cypress College during the week of May 13.

On Saturday, April 27, the Cypress College Baseball Team volunteered with the Cypress Champions League to work with children with special needs. A big thank you to our student athletes, to Head Baseball Coach Anthony Hutting, and to Cypress Councilman Jon Peat for inviting our team to spend the day in our community with our special champions.

Cypress College held our first-ever AB705 Summit on Friday May 4, hosting over 100 counselors, math, and English faculty who attended to hear Fullerton College’s Miguel Powers speak about growth mindset, to discuss the challenges instructors and students will face in these courses, and to share ideas for ensuring our students complete college-level math and English in their first year. Thank you to Gisela Verduzco for her leadership organizing this important event.

On May 2, we welcomed almost 1000 parents and students from AUHSD to our second Pledge Night. 809 AUHSD students completed contracts to attend Cypress next year. Thanks to AUHSD’s Jaron Fried, to Cherry Li-Bugg, to UCI, and CSUF for attending and sharing this evening with us. The energy in the packed theater and overflow rooms was exciting as we welcomed these young scholars to Cypress College. Thank you Dr. Paul de Dios, Dr. Rick Rams, and Gisela Verduzco for organizing this event.

Also on Pledge Night we celebrated the success of five of our Western High School dual enrollment students.  These students were the 1st place team in the Orange County Automobile Association (OCADA) Auto Technology competition, prevailing over 14 other teams. They won a 2018 Hyundai for the college. Representatives from Sharon Quirk-Silva’s office, OCADA, and Hyundai were present to honor the winning team. We appreciate the efforts of our Dual Enrollment Team, Dr. Henry Hua and Stephanie Teer, Dean Kathleen Reiland, and Auto Tech instructors Russ Bacarella and David Endo.

On May 3, we had the opportunity to host a lunch for our Dual Enrollment mentors, who have been working throughout this year with our high school and middle school Cyber Patriot teams. These Cypress students have volunteered countless hours to help our young scholars compete at the highest level. It was an honor to thank them for their excellent work building this proud program!

Fullerton College hosted the 1st Annual Veterans softball game on Friday, 5/3/19. We are happy to report that although Fullerton had home field advantage, the Cypress College veterans helped the Chargers win a tough game 6-5. Fullerton College President, Dr. Greg Schulz was a gracious host on behalf of Fullerton and in spring 2020, Cypress College will host this new annual tradition to celebrate our NOCCCD Veteran students. Go Vets, Go Chargers!

For the first time in recent memory, every spring sport in the Cypress College athletics program has qualified their respective playoffs. Congratulations to Baseball, Softball, Women’s Tennis, M/W Swimming, Men’s Golf, and Beach Volleyball on their quest for team and individual titles!

Playoff updates: The Cypress College softball team wins another conference championship and took the first round of playoffs, winning 2 of 3 games over Southwestern. The softball program has claimed the last five OEC Titles and 17 of the last 18. It is the 24th Conference Championship in program history, all coming under the leadership of Head Coach Brad Pickler. They will play at home the weekend of May 10-11 against Riverside in the second round. Our baseball team also won their first round 2-0 over favored Bakersfield. They will take on El Camino in the second round May 10-11.


The Cypress College Speech & Debate Team took four students to the Community College National Tournament, Phi Rho Pi from April 4-6. Our students took home six bronze medals in the individual categories and brought home an award in all the sweepstakes categories, winning two bronze medals and one silver. From April 5 – 6, 2019, four members of the team also competed at the Public Communication Speech and Debate League National Tournament, at Butler University in Indiana, taking an overall 2nd place sweepstakes award, and three individual awards. We are so proud of our Forensics program and instructor Josh House and Jennifer Page for their dedication to our students.

Cypress College was featured in the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC), English as a Second Language Report for our new ESL certificates. Cypress will be the first in the state to offer this certificate for students who master advanced transfer-level academic English skills and complete at least one course in a Guided Pathways meta major. Thank you Kathy Wada, Jill Bauer, Alison Robertson, Jenelle Herman, and Sam Simmons for your innovative approach to ESL. Read the report, and be sure to check out page 27 which highlights Cypress College!

Student Selina Jaimes-Davila will be featured on KPCC regarding her courageous journey from homelessness to a Cypress College STEM(2) scholar. Selina was interviewed on Monday, May 6 by Adolfo Guzman-Lopez and will be highlighted in an NPR profile on housing challenges for community college students.

The Cypress College Foundation Scholarship event was held on May 8 at 4:30 p.m. at the Campanile. We welcomed over 500 students and their families, donors, faculty, staff, and supporters. The Foundation gave out more almost $250,000 in scholarships. Thank you to our attendees and our generous donors!

Cypress received its #RealCollege California data on hunger and homelessness. Almost 1100 students participated from Cypress, and over 65% of respondents experienced a deficiency in one or more basic need area of housing or hunger. We will be sharing the results of this report broadly on campus and use these statistics to work with city and community organizations as we seek solutions to supporting our students’ basic needs.

Cypress was honored to host the District’s  Guided Pathways Summit on April 26, featuring presenters from Grossmont, Mission, Mesa, San Diego City, and Pasadena Colleges, as well as our own Cypress. Thanks to our college professional development teams, and the District support of Arturo Ocampo, Amita Suhrid, and Cherry Li-Bugg.

On Thursday April 25, seven Cypress students presented their scholarly research at ART+POLITICS, the 3rd Annual Community College Art History Conference, which was hosted by Cal State University Dominguez Hills. Approximately 45-people attended the conference from Cypress, Fullerton, and Cerritos Colleges — over half came from Cypress. The work of the Cypress College students will be published on the CC Art Department’s website at CSUDH.

It’s been an exciting spring semester as the Counseling Division continues to provide comprehensive services and support for all students. Charger Fridays welcomed over 250 students from various feeder high schools. The Career Planning Center collaborated with the Legacy Program to provide students with networking opportunities and tools including Elevator Speech and Dress for Success. Our DSS Counselors visited high schools to promote and register students in First Steps, Summer Prep Program. And the Cypress College Puente students participated in the Northern California university tour in April. We appreciate the great work our Student Services team does on behalf of our students!

This year’s Commencement will take place on Friday, May 24 at 6 p.m. This year, for the first time, we have chosen nine deserving Presidential Scholars of Distinction to lead their meta majors in the processional. We are looking forward to honoring all our graduates and hope you will join us at the pre-reception at 4:30 p.m. in CCCPLX-419, followed by our commencement celebration.

That’s our Board Report from Cypress College. Buen Cypress!

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