President Schilling’s Board Report for September 22, 2020

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 September 22, 2020

Cypress College is now in the third week of the “drive-through” food distribution in partnership with NOCE and Pathways of Hope. This drive-up event occurs each Wednesday at 9 a.m.-12 p.m. throughout the fall semester. Through the first three weeks, we have served over 500 students.  Many of you have asked how you can support our efforts so here are ways you can help:

  • Donations: The Cypress College Food Pantry welcomes donations of all non-perishable, pre-packaged food items. Additionally, we welcome donations of sealed and prepackaged hygiene products (toothbrush, toothpaste, floss, deodorant, feminine hygiene products, toilet paper, men’s/women’s razors, shaving cream, soap, shampoo/conditioner) as well as household essentials such as toilet paper, diapers, wipes, baby formula and related products that are sealed and fresh.
  • Where to Donate: For fall 2020 while we are remote, donations can be dropped off at our Campus Safety Office (1st Floor, Business Building). Campus Safety will work with our staff to deliver donations to our Food Pantry staging area for packaging and distribution. We recommend that you contact Campus Safety prior to arrival to ensure a staff member is available to meet you in their office. Financial contributions can be made through our Foundation by selecting where you wish your donation to go.
  • Volunteering: During the pandemic, we are limiting volunteers to the Food Pantry at the moment to comply to social distancing and COVID safety guidelines on campus. Our staging area and distribution area are currently staffed sufficiently thanks to the support of NOCE and Cypress College staff and student leaders. However, if a need arises to increase the need for additional volunteers, we will put out a separate call for participation. Thank you for your understanding and support!

VRC Update: The Cypress College VRC is conducting Zoom mixers every other week for students to connect with one another during this remote learning era. The staff is also keeping connected with our veterans through “Operation Re-supply” where students are picking up much needed school supplies and information to on/off-campus resources. Students receive biweekly email updates with pertinent information about VA education benefits, tutoring services, mental health resources, food and housing information, and mentoring services.

Financial Aid Update: The College Financial Aid offices dispersed Pell Grants to 3,745 students for a total of $4,051,028.92 in the first week of classes. We are now contacting all CARES eligible students for an additional 2,797 $500 emergency grants. We are making special efforts to reach out to affinity groups to ensure all in need have access to request this emergency funding. Additional funding will be handled through an online application that was successfully implemented spring 2020.

Cypress Cares College Campaign 2.0: Our Charger Experience Ambassadors are calling every enrolled student during the fall semester to provide support, understand their challenges, and provide needed resources. In this remote environment, we are finding that students appreciate the human touch and our student ambassadors are stepping up to support their peers.

Cypress College will be implementing Wellness Workshops for students and employees to help handle their stress and anxiety this semester. We will be implementing weekly workshops on yoga, mindful meditation and a group “Let’s Talk” series for students who need to connect during this stressful time. In addition, there will be wellness resources posted in all Canvas shells, on our website, and in the Health Center, including a menu of weekly activities each week. For employees, we will be launching a series of Friday workshops on stress management and then encouraging participation in quick “touch point” workshops on mediation, stress management and other techniques specifically directed towards employees.  More to be shared very soon. Please join us if you can!

The College will be hosting our second Presidential Advisory Group meeting on September 22, featuring 30 industry and community leaders to share the work the college is doing to support our community, and gain important insight on what our industry professionals need from us. The presentations will include an update on internships, our technical programs, Charger Experience, dual enrollment, and opportunities to support the college financially and through employment opportunities for our students.

Cypress College has been accepted to present at the Pathways to Equity Conference, sponsored by the CCC Foundation, and presented virtually September 29-30. Our presentation is called: Centering Guided Pathways in Equity at Cypress College and will be an overview of our efforts the past three years to ground our Guided Pathways implementation in ensuring equity for our students. The focus of our presentation will be the connection between data and equity, and the opportunity to use the data to tell stories of inequities. This centering of Guided Pathways presents an opportunity to shift the very culture and thinking of a college, from college policies to classroom practices to implicit biases, that will change the college experience for all students, but most dramatically for students of color. Presenters include Eileen Haddad, Lisa Gaetje, Steven Estrada, Ruth Gutierrez, Deidre Porter, and JoAnna Schilling.

In his most recent report to AUHSD, Superintendent Mike Matsuda acknowledged the partnership between AUHSD, Cypress College and NOCCCD. Here is his report and links to the specific work we are doing with our feeder high schools: Prior to the pandemic, I had the honor of representing the District (along with JoAnna Schilling, President of Cypress College) at IBM’s international education conference in New York highlighting STEM workforce pathways.  AUHSD was the only California school district invited to this prestigious event. Dr. Schilling and I were asked to share with national and international participants how we are transforming education through our Anaheim Educational Pledge, our award winning AIME (Anaheim Innovative Mentoring Experience) program, and our dual credit courses with Cypress and Fullerton Colleges, which all lead to preparing students for good jobs and careers. Besides the award winning partnership with Cypress College and the  Cyber Security Pathway at Magnolia High School, the District is developing Artificial Intelligence at Kennedy High School, Biotechnology at Anaheim High School, and Orange County’s first business and entrepreneurship incubator (iLab) at Western High School. Thank you, Superintendent Matsuda for the shout out, and to our Dual Enrollment Team, led by Henry Hua and Stephanie Teer in developing this important pathway approach in our dual enrollment programs.

Speaking of our partnership with AUHSD, the following graphic details the growth of our Promise Program (called the Charger Experience), disaggregating this by Pledge students in AUHSD, and all other students from other Districts, including Fullerton, Garden Grove and Los Alamitos. The success of this program has led to a dramatic increase in students completing math and English their first year (a requirement for Promise students) and over 30% of Charger Experience students maintain over a 3.0 GPA, placing them on the Deans or President’s Honor Lists.

Buen Cypress! We Take This Journey Together!

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