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South Mountain Community College’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa has selected students Katherine Alcazar and Ainsley Chapman for the All Arizona 2018-19 academic team. Alcazar and Chapman will also move forward as All USA nominees.
Alcazar is majoring in Biomedical Engineering, with the eventual goal of transferring to ASU to continue studying in that field, and one day earning her doctorate degree. Born and raised in Arizona, she initially chose SMCC as her first step – and for her, “the right step” – because she wanted to become better prepared and more confident before attending ASU. Alcazar has thrived in SMCC’s easily navigable campus setting and smaller class sizes, while also complimenting the level of support from the college’s “amazing faculty.” Besides being an honors student and honors award recipient, and an All Arizona nominee, Alcazar has also received the Chicanos Por La Causa scholarship for the past two years, which is awarded to outstanding Latino students attending Arizona colleges and universities who have demonstrated commitment to making positive changes to their communities and their selected fields of study. Academic excellence also seems to run in the Alcazar family, as Katie follows her sisters Isabel, who was the All Arizona nominee in 2017, and Emily, who was the All Arizona nominee in 2015.
Another Arizona native, Ainsley Chapman is dual majoring in biology and mathematics and also plans to transfer to ASU to continue her goals of obtaining a doctorate and becoming a research scientist. Currently only 17, Chapman has been homeschooled since the third grade, and began taking courses at SMCC as a way to supplement her educational experiences. She had such a good experience in the college’s CHM 107: Chemistry and Society class, that she kept taking college courses, including recently finishing CHM 235: Organic Chemistry. She credits the support she has received from friends and family, as well as from the faculty at SMCC who welcomed a younger – although obviously incredibly capable! – student into their classes. Besides being the All Arizona nominee, Chapman is the Fellowship and Membership Officer for SMCC’s Phi Theta Kappa chapter. In the Fall of 2017, she was also awarded the Paul Fannin leadership award, which goes to students who exhibit outstanding leadership qualities amongst their peers.
Congratulations to these two outstanding students!
On Saturday, November 3rd, South Mountain Community College Collegiate DECA sent 6 members to the Fall Leadership Conference at Grand Canyon University. At the conference, the students attended business related workshops and participated in case study competitions against 7 other colleges and universities. At the conference South Mountain Community College Collegiate DECA students brought home awards.
The SMCC Collegiate DECA students will compete again at the Arizona Career Development Conference on Saturday, February 23rd at Gateway Community College.
If you are interested in learning more about Collegiate DECA, contact Barbara Gonzalez at email@example.com.
ASU’s Massive “Walk on Mars” Map to be Displayed as Part of Hermanas Conference at South Mountain Community College
Since 2001, Arizona State University’s THEMIS camera has been taking infrared images of Mars, collecting more than 200,000 pictures over 17 years. The Mars Space Flight Facility has taken the best images, cropped and stitched and blended them together, and printed out a global map of the red planet at full resolution.
It’s the size of a basketball court.
But that’s the point of ASU’s “Walk on Mars” map: for future explorers to be able to walk and explore the hills and valleys of Mars themselves, and visitors will have their chance to do that on November 30 when the map will be displayed as part of the Hermanas Conference at South Mountain Community College.
The conference, hosted by SMCC in partnership with ASU, Intel and the Maricopa Community College District, is focused on introducing Latina girls and young women to careers in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields, and inspiring them to envision and pursue a career in a technical field.
“Many young Latina girls don’t know what opportunities are available in technology, or what it takes to pursue that career,” said Rosalinda Cota, Director of Early College Programs at SMCC. “They don’t even realize its an option. Combine that with the perception that these professions are not ‘traditional’ for Latinas, and this growing segment of our population is at the most risk of not being prepared to enter the workforce of the future.”
The conference, which runs from 9am-2pm, is designed for middle and high school Latinas, and will feature:
- Hands-on workshops focused on problem-solving, teamwork and creativity
- A Latina Town Hall, with an opportunity to learn from and speak with successful Latina professionals and learn about their educational and professional journey
- A resource fair, featuring educational institutions from across the valley
- Time to explore ASU’s “Walk on Mars” map
- Raffles, prizes and much more.
For more information about the Hermanas Conference, including how to attend, call the Early College office at 602-243-8333 or email early-college@southmountaincc.
Maricopa Community College students now have the opportunity to learn to code thanks to a new partnership announced with Galvanize Inc.
The Denver-based data science and software engineering school and the Maricopa County Community College District (MCCCD) have launched a new program allowing students to earn academic college credit at South Mountain Community College for completing the Galvanize Web Development Immersive (WDI) program.
Through this partnership, students who complete the WDI program can earn up to 12 credits (nearly a full semester of academic credit). Students can then choose to enter the workforce immediately, continue pursuing their education or begin working while saving up to enroll in a four-year university.
Read the full story on the Maricopa Community College District site by clicking here!
Demand for student success in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields has never been higher, and South Mountain Community College has made serving students pursuing careers in STEM fields a top priority.
Those efforts have not gone unnoticed.
Dr. Eboni Zamani-Gallaher, Director of the Office of Community College Research and Leadership (OCCRL), has identified SMCC as “excelling” in its support for Hispanic STEM students, and to learn more about the college’s programs, OCCRL will be making a site visit to SMCC on October 23-24.
Formed at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1989, OCCRL’s mission is to use research and evaluation methods to improve policies, programs and practices to enhance community college education, and support the transition to college for diverse learners at the state, national and international level.
As part of its visit, OCCRL will examine the college as part of a case study for a National Science Foundation grant: Hispanic-Serving Community College STEM Pipelines. OCCCRL looks for success in specific criteria such as enrollment and completion numbers, and degrees and certificates awarded, and the college must meet specific minimums as indicated by the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), including:
- Overall institutional minimum enrollment of 5000
- Minimum 30% Hispanic enrollment
- Number of Hispanic awards/degrees conferred of at least 50
- Ratio of Hispanic STEM completion to enrollment of at least .90
- Ratio of Hispanic completion to enrollment of at least .90
During the visit, OCCRL will interview STEM faculty, student services staff, and academic officers, as well as students themselves.
“I am thrilled that the office has recognized South Mountain Community College for its work,” said SMCC President Dr. Shari Olson. “This is such an important focus for local students who want to compete in the global marketplace.”
SMCC is federally recognized as a Hispanic-Serving Institution. More than half of SMCC’s student body is Hispanic, and 52 percent of the certificates and degrees awarded last year at SMCC were earned by Hispanic students. Approximately 30 percent of students attending the college are enrolled in STEM programs, with completion rates of nearly 90 percent.
Imposter Syndrome: SMCC Professor to Speak About Overcoming that Little Voice that Tells You You’re a Fraud
“This is crazy,” you think. “I shouldn’t be here. They’re going to find me out, and I’m going to get fired.”
Or thrown out of the building.
Or laughed off the stage.
If these types of thoughts have ever crossed your mind, you’re not alone. It’s called Imposter Syndrome, and South Mountain Community College geoscience professor Dr. Sian Proctor believes that it’s a nearly universal phenomenon that we all have experienced at one time or another. She will be speaking about overcoming it in her upcoming TED talk, “Imposter Syndrome: Overcoming the Voices Within,” as part of the TEDx event “Voices” taking place on Oct. 13 at the South Mountain Community Library, on the SMCC campus.
At its core, Imposter Syndrome refers to an individual’s concern at being discovered a “fraud,” despite their own real success or expertise. Many of the world’s most successful and famous individuals have talked about their own experience with Imposter Syndrome, including actors Tom Hanks and Emma Watson, authors Maya Angelou and Neil Gaiman, and Associate Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
“Society and social media are already constantly pressuring everyone to be the best, or to be the smartest or most amazing person in the room,” said Proctor. “But Imposter Syndrome is different, in that you’ve already been chosen and invited to be on the stage as an equal with all these other experts, and you still feel as if you have no right to be there.”
Proctor herself has struggled with these thoughts, despite a stunning resume that includes being a finalist for NASA’s astronaut training in 2009, being featured in the PBS Series Genius by Stephen Hawking, and a current side gig on the Science Channel’s TV show Strange Evidence as the science demonstration expert – not to mention a master’s degree in geology and a Ph.D. in science education she puts to regular use as part of the faculty at SMCC.
Proctor believes that Imposter Syndrome is particularly hard on women and minorities, as they increasingly and successfully navigate their way into experiences that had previously been inaccessible.
“It’s often when you are trying something new or trying to achieve a goal in a brand-new way,” said Proctor. “Your inner voice is telling you that you don’t deserve to be there, even though others have obviously identified you as someone that is engaging and unique, and has something to contribute.”
Proctor believes that one of the keys to overcoming Imposter Syndrome is trying to focus on what you bring to the table.
“We can be our own worst enemies, but we have to also be our own best cheerleaders,” said Proctor. “We have to remind ourselves of our own unique experiences, backgrounds and prospective, and say to ourselves, ‘Clearly, I am special, and I was chosen and I belong, and I am on the right path.’”
Proctor can be seen at the tedx event on October 13, and also as a speaker at the Women of Color STEM Entrepreneurship conference, October 4-6, hosted by Arizona State University.
The Ultimate Technology Summer Camp at South Mountain Community College (SMCC) has received nearly $100k in renewed grant funding from the Gila River Indian Community and the City of Phoenix, which will allow the popular program to continue its run for another three summers, through 2021. The college will receive a little more than $31k each year for the next three years.
“This is an amazing opportunity for young women and minority students to get first-hand experience into fields where they are traditionally underrepresented,” said SMCC Residential Faculty and Business Coordinator Mary Bailey Benson. “We’re thrilled to be able to continue this important program, and grateful to the Gila River Indian Community for their continued support.”
The camp began with initial grant funding in 2016. Each summer, the college hosted two week-long camps and served more than 150 students in total over the past three summers.
Aimed at students in grades 8-10, the camps expose minority and female students to educational opportunities and careers in science, math, engineering and technology (STEM). The goal of the camp is to stimulate interest in STEM and increase the number of minority and female students enrolling in STEM-related courses – in both high school and college.
The program curriculum includes hands-on activities and exercises that allow the students to experience the practical applications of STEM in the workplace, such as computer programming, data analytics, accounting principles, and engineering, in a fun learning environment. The camp also incorporates workshops that provide students with the skills needed to succeed in STEM courses. Also included are skills-based workshops focusing on the fundamentals of app development, an introduction to computer programming with Raspberry Pis, and the importance of critical thinking and math skills applied through MS Excel and accounting principles.
Campers have also taken part in design challenges at the Arizona Science Center’s CREATE maker’s space on the final day of the camp.
For more information about enrolling in the camp email Maria Bailey Benson at firstname.lastname@example.org
Todd Eastin, South Mountain Community College’s Director of Athletics and Baseball Coach, received the Idahlynn Karre Exemplary Leadership Award on April 3, 2018. This award recognizes achievements that advance academic and administrative leadership in higher education organizations. Congratulations Todd!
SMCC was the recipient of the 2018 American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Award of Excellence in the category of Community College Safety, Leadership, and Planning. This award honors exemplary practices and innovation in campus safety and emergency response strategies, programs, and procedures. Read More»
Over the last two weeks, since we hosted three finalists for the Vice President of Learning position at SMCC, Judy Belsher and I have worked very closely with District HR, the search consultant, and the VPL committee co-chairs, Guy Goodman and Dr. Newton.
Following the open forums on campus, I reviewed multiple sources of input, including open forum feedback comments, first and second interview committee rankings, and rankings from Division Chairs, Vice Presidents, and Deans. Background checks were completed late last week, with a formal offer from District HR being made to Dr. Clyne G. H. Namuo. He has accepted the offer and will begin working with us the week of May 21st.
Dr. Clyne G. H. Namuo currently serves as the Dean of Business and Technology at Cochise College where he leads a division that includes CIS/Cybersecurity, Business, Engineering, Small Business Development Center, Career Technical Education (welding, construction, automotive, culinary arts, agriculture/agronomy, HVAC, fire science), and the Prison Education Division. Prior to serving as Dean, Dr. Namuo was a member of the faculty for 11 years serving in progressively responsible positions including Department Chair of CIS and Assistant Dean of Technology (Division Chair).
Dr. Namuo holds a BBA in Marketing from the University of Hawaii, an MS in Information Systems from San Diego State University, and a Ph.D. in Higher Education Strategy from the Center for the Study of Higher Education at the University of Arizona.
He has presented his research on the strategic positioning of community colleges at the annual NISOD and League of Innovations conferences. He is the author of Community College Strategy published by NorLights Press in 2014 and has worked with various community colleges struggling to manage reduced financial resources and the impact of recessionary forces. He has been actively involved in accreditation efforts for over 10 years and is currently a peer reviewer for the Higher Learning Commission.
He is active in the community as a former board President of Habitat for Humanity Sierra Vista, a commissioner for the Industrial Development Authority, and a former member of the Sierra Vista City Council’s Citizen Advisory Commission.
I thank you all for participating in the process and providing your input.