Monthly Archives: November 2014

Skyline College Unites to Support Students Writing UC Personal Statements

CSU DropIn Photo1The Transfer Center is partnering with the CTTL, Learning Center and faculty and staff to work towards the goal of reviewing as many UC applicant personal statements as possible. Traditionally, that means around 200 students! To reach this goal, the Transfer Center partnered with the CTTL on Tuesday, October 28 to host a workshop on reviewing personal statements. Our UC Davis representative Mayra Escobar and English Professor Karen Wong gave an in-depth overview of what the UC is looking for and tips on supporting students’ writing process for the personal statement.  Eighteen faculty and staff from various disciplines and departments attended the workshop and several have since signed up to volunteer during designated UC personal statement review drop-in hours provided through the Transfer Center.

The first drop in day was on Wednesday, November 12 and it was widely attended!

The Transfer Center coordinated its efforts this year with the Learning Center by having a Personal Statement Workshop hosted one week prior to each drop-in day. This way students can get an overview of the process, start brainstorming and have time to come in with a draft. The faculty and staff working with students will provide feedback primarily on the content of the essay and Writing Center staff and tutors will continue their efforts to support students with the mechanics of their statements.

If you are interested in joining Skyline College’s efforts to support our UC applicants, please contact Suzanne Poma at

Article by Suzanne Poma | Photo by Michele Haggar

100 Skyline College Students Inducted into Phi Theta Kappa

BOO EventWith friends and family in attendance, 100 Skyline College students, 40 Cañada College students, and 30 CSM students were inducted into the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society for the fall 2014 semester. SMCCCD Trustee Tom Mohr attended the induction.

On November 14, Beta Theta Omicron hosted the Induction Ceremony for new members at Skyline College. It is the tradition of these three chapters to rotate hosting the induction. Howard Cannon, NASA Flight Director, gave the keynote address to introduce the Phi Theta Kappa Honors Study Topic, Frontiers and the Spirit of Exploration, to new members. Mr. Cannon talked about the nature of exploration and his lunar landing project. Professor and Phi Theta Kappa advisor, Paul Spakowski, called each inductee to the stage to sign the roster. Beta Theta Omicron President and 2014 International Distinguished Officer Jaimelynn Alvarez, swore in the 2014-15 officers for each chapter.

Did you know:*

  • A Phi Theta Kappa member is four times more likely to complete college than an average student.
  • A member is 44% more likely to complete when compared to students with similar GPAs (3.5 or higher).

*Data from National Center for Education Statistics Completion Survey for the Integrated Post and Secondary Education Surveys and National Student Clearinghouse Degree Completion/Transfer Verification.

Article by Christine Case | Photo by BΘO vice president Naing Min

Scholarship Social Event Raises Scholarship Awareness

Scholarship Social EventOn Wednesday, November 12, 2014 the Financial Aid Office kicked off National Scholarship Month with a Scholarship Social. Students who completed a scholarship quiz received freshly popped kettle corn by Peter’s Kettle Corn (  Students also received information about the 2015-2016 Skyline College Scholarship Season.

Thanks to the Associated Students of Skyline College (ASSC) for sponsoring this event.  Also, thank you to the Financial Aid Office, Financial Aid Ambassadors, Leitu Takapu and Michael Mark, Outreach Coordinator, Florentino Ubungen, Outreach Ambassadors Amelia Uluave and Jordan Baligad and Media Services for helping make this event a success.

Article and photos by Jocelyn Vila

Bécalos Students Celebrate Mexican Cultural Day

Becalos at Mexican Cultural Day 1 The Global Learning Programs and Services Division was pleased to host International Education Week from November 17-20. Each day of the week focused on a different cultural component to bring awareness to the Skyline College campus.

Tuesday, November 18 was highlighted by celebrating Mexican Cultural Day. The Bécalos program took the lead in presenting various aspects of their culture to the Skyline College community. Featured events included Bécalos student presentations on Mexican clothing, demonstrations and historical explanations of various dance forms, Día de los Muertos makeup tutorials, live music and singing and a celebration of Mexican cuisine.

Becalos at Mexican Cultural Day 1The Skyline College community was fortunate to have the Bécalos students available to share with the campus their own personal stories and histories as Mexican citizens. Skyline College students, faculty and staff were able to benefit from a first-hand account of cultural traditions while engaging in intercultural dialogue.

For more information about the Bécalos Program, please contact Pcyeta Stroud at

Article and photos by Alessandra Zanassi

Chanel Daniels: Supporting Student Success in The Learning Center

Chanel DanielsChanel Daniels began working in The Learning Center as a Graduate Writing and Reading Lab Tutor in August of 2012 and is now serving in an interim capacity as the Writing and Reading Lab Instructional Aide. She is also one of two English Coordinators for the TRiO Student Support Services Program, as well as one of the ASTEP English faculty on campus. Chanel has taught several levels of English classes as an adjunct instructor in the English departments at Skyline College and SFSU for 4 semesters and is a graduate of SFSU, where she studied English Literature, Post-Secondary Reading, and Composition.

“What I enjoy most about my work in the Learning Center is having the opportunity to be in the midst of the action and being in a position where I can truly make an impact. Coordinating for the TLC and TRiO, I am able to take a grass roots approach to meeting students’ needs by getting to know them as individuals, supporting our amazing tutors and student assistants in their endeavors to support students, and interacting with the invaluable professors that contribute to our numerous student workshops and tutor training seminars. There is always something going on in the Learning Center and on the Skyline College campus, in general, so I empower students to take advantage of as many opportunities as possible in order to get the maximum benefit during their time at Skyline College. I love learning from and collaborating with my incredible colleagues that comprise the TLC and TRiO staff; these special folks have become like a family to me.”

Chanel describes her teaching philosophy in four words: BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY. She uses texts representative of diverse backgrounds and experiences that students can identify with outside of the classroom, which enables them to feel the urgency of finding their own voice and sharing it in the academic realm. As a strong advocate of Paulo Freire’s theory on liberation education, group work is a regular part of her classroom dynamic. If you come into Chanel’s classroom on any given day, you might see students writing on the board and her sitting at a desk. Chanel strives to meet students where they are even if this means revising previously developed curriculum in order to better fit their needs and their interests. She describes the teaching and learning process in this way: “I learn so much from my students, and the community learning that takes place along with the extra time that I extend to them as an instructor and mentor becomes the catalyst for their success. As a teacher and support coordinator, I get the best of both worlds.”

Chanel has worked with students at all levels from elementary through high school and has also had the privilege of teaching, tutoring, and mentoring underrepresented groups of students through such programs and organizations as SFSU’s Educational Opportunity Program, USF’s Upward Bound, CCSF’s African American Scholastic Programs, and Instituto Familiar de la Raza, Inc. in the San Francisco Mission district. Some of her favorite pastimes include listening to music, singing, crafting, writing poetry, getting lost in a good book, and spending quality time with her Dad.

To get more information about TLC programs and services, please visit us in Building 5, or visit us on the web at

Article by David Reed

Join Skyline College’s Chess Club!

Chess Club PicAre you a Chess Pro? Novice? Never played? All skill levels and abilities are welcome and encouraged to join Skyline College’s Chess Club! The Chess Club meets every Friday at 1:00 p.m. in the Career Services Center located in Building 1 Room 1219B. Whether you’re looking to hone your chess skills in your quest to become Grandmaster or don’t quite know the difference between a Rook and a Knight, there’s a group of players from all levels willing to help you sharpen your skills. We hope to see you at our next meeting!

Article and photo by Brian Jenney

Skyline College Women’s Basketball Beats De Anza in Conference Cross-Over

Skyline College defeated the defending Coast Conference South Champion De Anza College Tuesday night by a final score of 80-63.  Skyline College jumped out to an early lead and never looked back, outscoring the Dons in each half of play.  The Trojans’ unselfish play was displayed by their solid team defense and spread scoring attack.  Alyssa Dela Cruz led Skyline College in scoring with 17 points, while Stephanie Allen and Tianna Mitchell added 15 points each.  Jazel Talauta led the way with 9 assists, and Sahara Clay led the team in both blocks and rebounds.  Skyline College hosts Gavilan College next Tuesday, November 25, at 7pm.

SPARC: Exploring the Relationship between the Budget and the Strategic Plan

The Strategic Planning and Allocation of Resources Committee (SPARC) has been busy at its past two meetings, investing time in reviewing the two topics most central to its role: budget and planning. At the October 30, 2014 meeting, the SPARC hosted Executive Vice Chancellor Kathy Blackwood, who presented an overview of the new District Allocation Model. The forum was well attended by not only Committee members, but also interested faculty, staff, and students of Skyline College. The main highlights were:

  • FTES and Enrollment changes will not automatically affect Colleges’ allocation.
  • Growth in International Students will result in increased allocations to the Colleges.
  • Step and Column increases will be covered.
  • Colleges can receive additional allocation through a category called Demonstrated Need.

There was significant discussion regarding the last point. At this time the process for applying for ‘Demonstrated Need’ allocations has yet to be determined.

At the SPARC meeting held on Thursday, November 13, 2014 the focus turned to Strategic Planning at the College and the District. The SPARC dedicated time to a review of the Strategic Plan, including the goals, strategies, and priorities of Skyline College. This was the first opportunity the committee has had to review the documents since the combination of the Institutional Planning Council (IPC) and College Budget Council (CBC) formed the SPARC at the beginning of this academic year. The importance of the content of these documents was reinforced as discussion turned to the District Strategic Planning process currently underway, and the incorporation of Skyline’s strategic priorities into that process.

Accordingly, the next SPARC meeting will be held jointly with the District Strategic Planning Forum on Internal Data and Trends on Thursday, December 11, 2014, 2:30 p.m. All interested parties are welcomed. Details on location and agenda will follow soon.

Prior to the next forum individuals are encouraged to review documents published on the District Strategic Planning page ( Feedback and comments are welcomed and may be submitted online at or via email to Executive Vice Chancellor Blackwood (

Article by Aaron McVean

Skyline Academic Senate Attends Fall 2014 Plenary Session

Fall State Plenary for Academic SenateNovember 13-15, 2014 was the Fall State Plenary for the Academic Senate of California Community Colleges (ASCCC).  Skyline College Academic Senate President Kate Williams Browne, Vice President Stephen Fredricks, and Secretary Leigh Anne Shaw attended to represent Skyline College.  Through session attendance, meetings, and resolution writing and voting, they were able to learn volumes about the directions that the CCC Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO) is leading the CCC system and how the ASCCC is ensuring faculty voice in this era of quick legislation.

Executive Vice Chancellor Patrick Perry gave an informative and data-filled presentation on the Student Success Initiative and the goals being set for CCCs – this has direct impact on our own campus efforts towards student success.  Presentation materials may be found at

Leigh Anne Shaw, together with members from the Chancellor’s Office and Adult Basic Education, spoke on a keynote panel entitled “Adult Education at a Crossroads.”  The panel discussed AB 86 legislation and its impact on CCCs and Adult Education providers; it was followed by a breakout session, “Exploring New Possibilities for Student Success Through Noncredit.”

Of the many informative sessions attended, most notable were sessions discussing gender equity and diversity, the Student Success Initiative’s implementation, and discussions of the 50% Law and the need to redefine the term “instructional” in a modern era.  The Skyline College leadership plans to lead its local senate in refining many practices pertaining to the following:

  • Balloting and the Brown Act
  • Greater senate engagement in critical processes and plans such as SSSP, Equity, Basic Skills, Common Assessment Initiative, and AB 86
  • Impact of impending initiatives such as the Online Education Initiative, Common Assessment Initiative, and the Education Planning Initiative

For more information, all are welcome to attend a senate meeting, the dates of which can be found at this link:

(Pictured from left: Doug Hirzel, President of Cañada College Senate; Kate Williams Browne; Stephen Fredricks; Leigh Anne Shaw)

Article by Leigh Anne Shaw| Photo by Diana Bennett

Coming Up…

Friday, November 21, 2014

Saturday, November 22, 2014

  • 8:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m., Skyline College ESL Registration Day, Skyline College, Building 5, Room 5100
  • 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Wrestling at the Coast Conference Championships, Chabot College
  • 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., Men’s Basketball at Mendocino Tournament, Mendocino College
  • 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Men’s Soccer at CCCAA State Playoffs (1st round), TBA
  • 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Women’s Soccer at CCCAA State Playoffs (1st round), TBA
  • 7:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m., Sixth Annual Performing Arts Showcase, Skyline College, Building 1, Theater

Monday, November 24, 2014

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

  • 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Grove Scholarship Application Workshop, Skyline College, Building 1, Room 1218
  • 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m., Workshop on Preparing for Exams and Avoiding Test Anxiety, Skyline College, Building 5, Room 5115
  • 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., Transfer Center – UC Personal Statement Drop-In Application Assistance, Skyline College, Building 2, Room 227
  • 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., No Financial Aid Application Labs, Skyline College, Building 2, Room 2117-B
  • 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Men’s Soccer at CCCAA State Playoffs (2nd round), TBA
  • 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., Women’s Soccer at CCCAA State Playoffs (2nd round), TBA
  • 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m., Grove Scholarship Application Workshop, Skyline College, Building 1, Room 1218
  • 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Men’s Basketball at Gavilan College for a conference crossover game, Gavilan College
  • 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., Women’s Basketball v. Gavilan College for a conference crossover game, Skyline College
  • 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m., Women’s Volleyball at CCCAA State Playoffs, TBA

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

  • 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., Cultural Competency:  A Cross Race/Gender Conversation with Lee Mun Wah, Skyline College, Building 6, Room 6202
  • 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., No Financial Aid Application Labs, Skyline College, Building 2, Room 2117-B

Thursday, November 27, 2014

  • Thanksgiving Day (Holiday)

Friday, November 28, 2014

  • Declared Recess

For the latest information on events and activities happening at Skyline College, please view our calendar.

If you would like to include your college event or activity on the calendar, please submit the event, date, time and location to Jennifer Owen-Blackmon via email at