President Schilling’s Board Report for November 14, 2023

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 November 14, 2023

On November 2 from 5-8:30 p.m., the Charger Experience Program, Puente, EOPS Program, and the Spanish Club, in collaboration with the President’s Office and the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Anti-Racism, & Accessibility (DEIAA) Committee, celebrated Cypress College’s 1st Annual Dia de Los Muertos event. This event included a mariachi band, ballet folklorico, face painting, a special streaming of the film Coco, pan dulce, and more, as we celebrated the return of loved ones who have passed. Our Media Arts and Design students projected images on our outdoor campanile and mural, and students, faculty, and staff created ofrendas/altares that commemorate those who have gone before us. It was a wonderful event week that also included our Associated Students’ Halloween celebration on October 30, ending with our Focus on the Future event with Chancellor Christian, Senator Newman, Dr. Breland, and Rob Johnstone.

Our first Japanese Movie Night event was held on Friday, October 20, from 5-7:30 p.m. in CCCPLX-216. This SEA-funded event was presented by the Japanese Program, Japanese Culture Club, and AVC (ART Visionaries Club). It featured the student art displays and presentations, a cosplay Halloween costume show, a screening of the classic Japanese animated film Princess Mononoke, and free food and drinks such as pizza, mochi ice cream, edamame, and sushi rolls. This event was a great opportunity for students to learn more about Japanese culture, see how different student clubs can collaborate, and celebrate our campus diversity. Another Japanese Movie Night will be held on November 16. Thank you to Professor Mihoko Luther for engaging our campus and students in this wonderful cultural experience.

Our Photography Department hosted their opening reception for three major photographic exhibitions on October 26 at 6 p.m. in the Edouard de Merlier Photography Gallery. Photographer Norris Duckett III shared images of the modern dance revolution known as Krump, and Jeremy Harris’s images from American Asylums document the empty, forgotten, and left to decay buildings of mental institutions within the American landscape. Also, on October 26, the Photography Club opened up the 23/24 exhibition season with an advanced photography student show. The exhibition titled “No Newbs” highlights some of the best photographic images created in the last year from our students. All are welcome to stop by to see this exhibition located in Tech Ed-1, Second Floor and TE-1 230. The Gallery is open Monday-Friday during normal college hours.

On October 27, Kathy Wada, ESL professor and co-chair of the campus’ Ascend Project with UC Davis and Sacramento City college, presented as part of the California Acceleration Project (CAP) Fall 2023 Webinar Series: Teaching Matters for Equity. This webinar, titled ‘Learning from Our Students’ Experiences to Create Classroom Cultures that Promote Equity,’ featured a conversation about the Ascend professional development model and new research into its use in California community colleges as a strategy for creating classroom cultures that promote equity. Within the context of an Ascend community of practice, faculty learned evidence-based practices and tested the impact of those practices by iteratively collecting disaggregated survey data from students about their classroom experiences. Read the full paper, Toward Belonging in the Community College Classroom: Lessons from the Learning for Equity Ascend Research Network (LEARN) (Escobar, 2023).

Our Rising Scholars community presented an evening with author (and LA Times journalist) Keri Blakinger on Thursday, October 26Keri’s memoir is titled Corrections in Ink and chronicles her life journey – from figure skating to addiction and incarceration, to her current career as an investigative journalist writing on mass incarceration. The event featured dinner, followed by a talk with Keri and Q&A from the audience.

NOCCCD officially recognized November 5–11, 2023 as Veterans Appreciation Week, and the Cypress College VRC has multiple events to honor our veterans throughout the week:

  • Annual VRC Softball Game: Cypress College VRC beat the Fullerton College’s VRC softball team, 17–18, for the third time in four years!
  • Green Zone Project: On Monday, November 6 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. in the VRC, we will be offering our Green Zone Project Training for our campus staff. The Green Zone Project is a professional development workshop to bring awareness to the barriers student veterans experience as they transition from military to college life. It provides suggestions to be a friendlier campus and become an ally for our military-affiliated students!
  • Resource Fair: On Tuesday, November 7, from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. the VRC will host a resource fair for local organizations to inform vets and their families about the services such as employment, furnishings, personal assistance, and healthcare they can access. Free food will be provided and there will be an opportunity drawing for $50 gift cards for gas, grocery, and Amazon!
  • Women’s Unit(y) Veterans Celebration: On Wednesday, November 8, please join the Women’s Unit(y) group on the VRC patio from 3-5 p.m. to celebrate and honor our female veterans. Esmeralda Martin will host the group as they come together for lunch and activities to acknowledge this very special portion of the veteran population.
  • Veterans Day Appreciation Carnival: On Thursday, November 9, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. we invite all of our military-affiliated students to bring their family and loved ones for a night of food, fun, and games. There will be game booths with prizes, an art station, and best of all, FREE BARBECUE.

The Cypress College Foundation Golf Classic was held on Monday, November 6 at the Old Ranch Golf Club in Seal Beach. Current Board President and alumnus, Curtis Scheetz, and long-time Board member Phil Wendel co-chaired this event, which was sponsored by Total Environmental Management. Last year’s event brought in a record $125,000 in scholarship support, and we expect this year will be supported at the same level. Thank you to our Foundation staff led by Howard Kummerman, Rachel Ghatikar, and Lesley-Anne Loon for making this a memorable event in support of our students.

Also coming up is our Americana Honoree Luncheon on November 17, followed by our Americana Kickoff event held in our Theater Lobby on December 7, culminating in the 49th annual Americana Awards, held this year at the Westin Hotel on March 16, 2024. Mark your calendars as we hope you will join us for the many upcoming Foundation events in support of student scholarships this academic year!

On November 6, Drs. JoAnna Schilling, Kathleen Reiland, and SEM Dean Patricia Menchaca had the opportunity to attend the 2024 Teacher of the Year Awards at the Disneyland Hotel. The 2024 OC TOTY Banquet honored NOCCCD nominees, Cypress College Professor Sarah DeMartino who attended with her family, Fullerton College Professor Rosie Kar, and NOCE Professor Souzan Sahakian. It was a wonderful evening to pay tribute to the many contributions made by these outstanding faculty. Congratulations to all!

Cypress College’s 6th annual fall outreach day, Commit2Cypress, was held Tuesday, November 7 from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m. The event kicked off the 2023-24 outreach season that culminates with Commit2Cypress each May. Over 1,200 high school seniors participated. Watch a video of last year’s event.

Buen Cypress! We Take This Journey Together!

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