President Schilling’s Board Report for September 10, 2019

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

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

on September 10, 2019

Fall enrollment continues to stay strong and the energy on campus is high. We are currently exceeding last year’s enrollment by 1.5% after ending the summer with a 3% increase from the prior summer. Students are engaged and appear comfortable on campus, attributable to much of the advance planning with our Promise students, the many counseling phone calls, social media alerts, communication nudges on registration, an upgrade in our Cypress Connect mobile app, and staff being welcoming, helpful and available. The campus agreed to part company with our food vendor in August and, until we can identify a new vendor, we are relying on food trucks, and an expansion with Follett to supply our morning coffee, lunch and dinner menu, and “grab and go” convenience items. The response to the different food offerings has been extremely positive from students, staff, and faculty, and has created a great energy in our Gateway Plaza as all constituents have been mingling together during the lunch hours.  We are asking all food vendors to offer at least two low cost items each day (under $5).

Campus News

The college has increased the total of our Pledge/Promise students to over 1400 students taking 12 units or more and enrolled in math and English during their first year – an increase of almost 50% from last years’ cohort. Our 35 Promise Mentors, all second year Promise students, are working to support the new first year cohort stay focused and encouraged.

Our Student Services team, led by VP of Student Services, Paul de Dios, has adopted the theme, Enhancing the Student Experience as their 2019-20 guiding principle. To emphasize this important work, all meetings, communication, and decision-making will ensure that students come first. Paul issued his first newsletter communication, which will be sent each quarter, emphasizing the great work being done by his staff, counselors, and the student services team in serving Cypress students. Thank you, Paul, and our excellent SS team!

Congratulations to Dr. Therese Mosqueda-Ponce, the recipient of the Cypress College Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award this year. Dr. P. as she is affectionately known is the founding faculty of the Cypress Puente Program and has been the passion and force behind this important first-year experience for our LatinX students for over 23 years.

Kudos to our Financial Aid team, led by Korey Lindley, under the oversight of Dean Rick Rams, for completing all pending financial aid requests during the first week of school! Director Lindley challenged his team to complete all outstanding student files while maintaining an “all hands on deck” approach with assisting the students in the lobby, over the phone, or through email inquiries. This means that all students will be ready to receive their financial aid disbursements in a timely way, helping them to purchase books, receive their vouchers, and be ready for school within the first few weeks of the term. Thank you to Korey and his excellent team for enhancing the student experience!

The Charger Assessment Team (ChAT) exists to support faculty and staff to work with distressed, concerning, or difficult student behavior. Implemented in 2018, ChAT promotes a safe college environment for employees, while helping students in need. The support team will soon be certified through the National Behavioral Intervention Team Association (NaBITA) and will be implementing a new electronic reporting mechanism, Maxient, this fall to assist faculty easily identify and help students in distress. Thank you to ChAT Team members: David Booze, Treisa Cassens, Paul deDios, Flor Huerta, Marla McBride, Dave Okawa, Nicola Perry, Celeste Phelps, Marc Posner, Katy Realista, and Ralph Webb.

Don’t forget to purchase your tickets for the inaugural Cypress College Angels Night (vs. the Houston Astros) on Thursday, September 26 at 7:05. Special VIP tickets are available for our trustees and we will be hosting a tailgating reception at 5 p.m. under the Big A. Tickets are $25, with $4 of each ticket going to support our food pantry. You will receive a Cypress-logoed commemorative hat in addition to joining the Cypress community for a fun evening at the ballpark. Tickets can be reserved by request through the Chancellor’s Office. In addition the Cypress College Foundation will be auctioning off the chance to throw the first pitch.

Personalized e-Brochures: Cypress College students have downloaded more than 500 personalized e-brochures since they became available in February as part of the new Career Education website ( and marketing campaign. Each program website has a “Get Info” button where students can select just the programs they are interested in, along with any support services information such as counseling and financial aid. Within 30 seconds, an information packet is generated with the students’ name at the top and essential information they need to get started, including program options, career details, department contact, and pathway maps. A sample of this personalized brochure is at the end of this board report.

During our Club Rush event on September 3-4, photo-storyteller, John Noltner, was on campus filming students and hearing their stories as part of the “Peace of Mind” project. Students had the opportunity to explore their common humanity through a unique photo collage entitled: What Kind of World Do You Want To Live In? Once the stories are filmed and edited, Noltner will be turning them into collage of our student experiences, which we will be exhibiting and showing on Opening Day in spring 2020.

As part of our Civitas implementation, Cypress College will be implementing a pilot focused on our students who are first time/part time students. Our data shows that students who take only one course in their first semester persist at a 46% rate versus part time students who took just one additional course in their first semester — these students persisted at 74% rate. To help serve these first time students, many of them older adults, we will be implementing multiple “nudge” campaigns to provide tutoring support, encouraging one additional course, and providing targeted online counseling. We look forward to updating you with the results in spring!

Upcoming Events:

Patriot Day Remembrance – on September 11, the college will be honoring the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington, DC. The college will share a moment of silence at 9:11 a.m., and our veterans will decorate our Gateway Plaza with over 3000 flags to commemorate those who lost their lives that day, while acknowledging the heroism of our first responders. May We Never Forget.

Hostile Terrain opens on September 19, with a screening of the documentary, Border South, and Q&A with director Raul Pastrana at 4:30 p.m. and reception at 6 pm. This interactive installation, documenting the treacherous journey through the Sonora Desert in Arizona taken by migrants trying to reach the US, identifies the over 3200 migrants who perished during this journey through Southern Arizona since 2000. Please join us for this important exhibit.

Hispanic Heritage Month – On September 17 at 11 a.m. near our Campanile, we will be having the kick off reception for Hispanic Heritage Month. Highlights include: Sept 19 Gallery Opening of our retrospective for Spanish sculptor, Sergio O’Cadiz,-Moctezuma, whose important mural is installed in our CCCPLX building facing the quad; September 26- screening of “Singing Our Way to Freedom” at 11a.m.; October 15 – Closing Ceremony “ Siquerios: A Revolutionary in Art and Life” at 3 p.m.

Below is a sample of a personized e-brochure for Cypress College students.


Career Education

Info Packet For:

Mario Munoz

Cypress College is here to build careers. Start your journey to job success by gaining the skills and education you need to enter your field, knowing you’ve built your future at an award-winning campus.

We offer 176 career-certificate options for you to choose from, in fields from technology, to arts, to travel, to business, and beyond. Our programs are highly decorated by the Strong Workforce Stars initiative, and we partner with leading companies to fast-track employment You’ll find cutting-edge teaching tools, equipment, and instructors who either work in their industries currently or bring years of previous experience to their students.

Begin your new career path with confidence as a viable candidate in the field of your choice. Take the first step by viewing our program options, and know that we’re here to guide you along the way.

More info:

Next Steps

If you are ready to take the next steps toward becoming a Cypress College student, click the links below.

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