President Schilling’s Board Report for July 27, 2021

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 July 27, 2021

In a few short weeks the college will be welcoming back over 30% of our courses on campus, as well as offering all of our services both on campus and online. It will be fantastic to see students on campus in larger numbers for the first time in over 17 months. In order to encourage and facilitate students and employees to be vaccinated, the college will be hosting two on-site Vaccination Days on August 10 and August 31 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. each date. These events will be open to our entire District community, as well as the local community.  Please spread the word so we can encourage more people to receive their vaccinations and keep our campus and local community safe.

On July 31, 2021, Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva will honor individuals who have contributed to the community. Our own Dr. Juan Garcia has been selected as Veteran of the Year. Dr. Garcia has been a leader to our 754 military-affiliated students at Cypress College, instrumental in the design of and support of our new Veterans Resource Center, and served our country in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2004-2008, with three deployments in Afghanistan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. Juan will be honored on July 31 at 10 a.m. at Ehlers Event Center in Buena Park. This is a well-deserved honor and we offer our heartfelt congratulations to Juan and his family.

Also receiving recognition by Assemblywoman Quirk-Silva’s office is student Catherine Cueva, who just completed her associate degree in political science and will be continuing at UCLA in the fall. Catherine received the California Latino Legislative Caucus Foundation (CLLCF) Award which comes with a $5000 scholarship. Ms. Cueva, you might recall, currently represents Cypress College on the Student Leadership Council at the Hope Center, and also serves as a workforce commissioner in the city of Stanton. We are #CYProud of Catherine and wish her our congratulations!

Henry Hua, Dean of Business and CIS, has been selected by SynED for their CyberHero series, which “highlights cyber heroes who quietly go above and beyond in helping to prepare our national cyberforce.” Read the press release about Henry and the CyberHero series. We appreciate Henry’s guidance and leadership in helping us create successful opportunities for our students. Congratulations, Dean Hua!

Charger Baseball alum, Tylor Megill, recently made his Major League debut in a start for the New York Mets. Megill received a standing ovation after pitching 4 1/3 innings with 4 strikeouts.  While at Cypress, he helped lead the baseball program to a CCCAA Final-Four appearance in 2016 before transferring to the University of Arizona. Megill is the 26th Charger to appear in the Major Leagues. 

The Charger Experience Program added the Charger Nights component to expand the number of students served in the spring. Charger Nights allowed students to complete the matriculation process (ed plan, assessment process, orientation) and ensure that students were ready for registration in July. The total number of students served through Charger Fridays and Charger Nights was 843. These students represented over 30 high schools, in addition to our 10 AUSHD partner high schools.  Charger Friday and Charger Night make-ups were held the week of June 14, through 8 sessions that accommodated 200 students each to onboard and learn how to select classes and prepare for registration.

Priority Registration Events began the week of July 12. All CEP students attended sessions to assist them with the registration process and these workshops will continue throughout July for all students. Counselors will be on hand to assist with the registration process, clear any prerequisite errors that were encountered during registration, and ensure our Promise students enroll in 12 units, including English, Math, and a COUN course.

The Student Ambassador team continued the Cypress Cares Campaign this spring and reached 2,518 students.  The purpose of this campaign was to help students stay connected to the college and we will continue this for the fall semester. Students were directed to campus resources such as the campus food distribution, tutoring, and laptop rentals. Student Ambassadors also called students this spring to inform them of the Legacy Program to promote enrollment for spring 2021. The call campaign has also continued throughout the summer, focusing on students who have dropped classes in spring 2020 and have not returned, in order to ensure they are reenrolling in the fall semesters.  Ambassadors will connect students to resources and make referrals to our Student Success counselors. 

This summer, in an effort to help guide students who struggled during the pandemic, Student Success Counselors are meeting with students who would have been placed on Academic Probation and financial aid disqualification to provide a high-touch, holistic approach to better serve our students. Counselors help create Ed Plans and provide students with support services that ensure their success moving forward.  Our Financial Aid counselor has been working with students who have been disqualified from Financial Aid to complete their satisfactory academic progress appeals in an easy and student-centered way. We thank your dedicated student service counselors, Dr. Troy Davis, and Dr. de Dios for their innovative approach to serving students.

Congratulations to our five graduating ambassadors! These Student Ambassadors, who began as Promise students and then became ambassadors in their second year, have all stayed with us through the COVID pandemic and have made a difference by leading the Virtual Welcome Center, continuing to provide outreach support online, and maintaining a connection with our students through the Cypress Cares campaign. Each are transferring to a four-year institution. They are: Sean Del Castillo – CSUF; Vivian Tieu – CSULB; Haylee Barsumian – CSULB; Isabella Ferinac – CSULB; Jude Suleiman – CSUF. We are very proud of them and thank them for their commitment to Cypress College!

On July 8, our Toyota T-TEN instructors, Michael Klyde and Paul Kelly, with support from Dean Kathleen Reiland, hosted our 2020 and 2021 T-TEN Commencement for an in-person, on-campus event by the pond. Graduates from both years were able to receive their certificates and service plaques as their families and our Toyota Dealers looked on. Our Foundation supported the event by hosting a food truck for all attendees and a celebration cake to support our graduates. Congratulations to our T-TEN program for being the top ASE awarding college in the nation for the second year in a row!

Also on July 8, our Legacy Program hosted its first Summer Bridge Culmination Ceremony. This year, for the first time, incoming Legacy students participated in a two-week summer bridge program to help prepare them for the semester. The culmination ceremony included their instructors, greetings from Dr. Schilling and Dr. Davis, a keynote form Dr. Douglas, and families and friends. Twenty-seven new Legacy Scholars participated in the summer activities. Thank you, Regina Rhymes, Annette Letcher, Virgil Adams, and LaRon Armstead for putting together this great summer introduction to Cypress College.

In honor of those employees returning to campus, the President’s Office, Caring Campus coaches, and Guided Pathways are sponsoring a Welcome Back Week August 2-5. On Monday there will be a hosted breakfast from 9–10 a.m.; Tuesday will feature a taco cart from 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.; Wednesday employees can enjoy ice cream sundaes from 1–2 p.m., and on Thursday we will have the Classified Carnival, featuring team competition. We are grateful for everything our employees have accomplished this past year and look forward to welcoming them back to campus.

Enrolled students participating in our affinity programs such as Legacy, Puente, EOPS, Athletics, Promise, DSS, Veterans, and students with demonstrated need, will be eligible for a Free Laptop and Grab & Go Meals for the 2021-22 academic year.  We are reaching out to all students who may be eligible for this program in order to support their education this year. Thank you to our student services, and VPs de Dios and Porter for leading this effort.            

Buen Cypress, We Take This Journey Together!

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