Daily Archives: May 25, 2017

Skyline College to Be the Only College in California to Offer the New Apple App Developer Course

swift logoSkyline College will begin offering Apple’s newly announced app development curriculum as part of its computer science and technology pathways this fall. “App Development with Swift” is a series of curriculum modules and resources designed for students who want to pursue careers in the fast-growing app economy. Skyline College is one of six community colleges—and the only one in California—to offer the curriculum.

App Development with Swift is curriculum designed by Apple to teach students elements of app design using Swift, which is a popular programming language for building apps for Apple devices. Skyline College will begin integration of the curriculum into courses as part of its Computer Science pathway, which is a focused series of courses intended to prepare students for a career in computer programming. Students will learn to code and design fully functional apps, gaining critical job skills in software and app development, information technology and object-oriented program design.

“Swift is an important and timely addition to our computer science curriculum,” said Skyline College President Regina Stanback Stroud. “This gives Skyline College students the advantage of having the latest, most relevant training in a hot and growing job sector. And with our location in the Bay Area, this will be a great benefit to local tech employers.”

Skyline College is launching new technology career pathways in the high-demand fields of DevOps, UX design and mobile app development. These career pathways begin in fall 2017 as part of Skyline College’s Strong Workforce Initiative, which matches classroom curriculum and academic planning with the needs of employers in order to prepare highly trained and valuable workers in tech, healthcare and other fields.

The College will also explore ways to use the new Apple curriculum as part of dual enrollment partnerships and bridge programming that build stronger connections and transitions to Skyline College for high school and adult school students.

Skyline College has agreed to pilot the new curriculum and provide feedback to Apple. Only six community colleges in the United States will offer App Development with Swift this fall: the Alabama Community College System, Columbus State Community College, Harrisburg Area Community College, Houston Community College, Mesa Community College and Skyline College. The San Mateo Community College District plans to expand the partnership to other colleges in the district.

Skyline College faculty and career education leadership are optimistic the Apple curriculum will attract students who might not otherwise be drawn to computer science courses. The popularity and familiarity of Apple apps and their devices can help to address the reluctance students may feel when looking into careers in the high-power technology industry. One of Skyline College’s goals is to increase equity and diversity for students enrolled in these programs.

Apple’s curriculum includes a comprehensive student guide with playground exercises, mini projects and quizzes, as well as a teacher’s guide with grading rubrics, solutions code and Keynote presentations.

App Development with Swift is an extension of Apple’s existing K-12 Everyone Can Code curricula which offer everyone the power to learn, write and teach coding. Swift is Apple’s powerful and intuitive programming language that gives developers the freedom and capabilities they need to create the next generation of cutting-edge software. Popular apps including Airbnb, KAYAK, TripAdvisor, Venmo and Yelp are all created with Swift.

Article by Richard Rojo

End of Year Celebration: Recap and Thank You

end of year celebrationOn Thursday, May 18, the Academic Senate and Classified Senate worked closely together to host the annual End-of-Year Celebration. To welcome us into the summer the theme this year was Beachy Keen! Guests were greeted as they walked in with flip flops, beach balls, sun glasses and a generous donation of beautiful baskets! Our charismatic, talented and super cool Amber Steele, and the fun and enthusiastic Classified Senate President, Michele Haggar welcomed guests with a warm summer greeting. The event featured two amazing singers from Amber Steele’s courses.

In addition to the beautiful performance, the celebration featured a drawing for baskets donated by various divisions, programs, and departments on campus! The proceeds, totaling $1,147.50 dollars will be going the Academic and Classified Senate Student Scholarships for 2018 for Skyline College students. Well done team!

And along with the wonderful drawings and baskets, this was a time for us to recognize, say thanks, and congratulate our Classified Staff Retirees Sandra Kirkpatrick, Devitt Hartney, We Hwa Fend (aka Teacher Vicky), and Marilyn Jean. They will all be sorely missed! To present the Special Recognitions Award, Michele introduced Vice President of Administrative Services, Eloisa Briones who presented the special recognition to Annie Trinh, Accounting Technician and Dean of SMT Ray Hernandez who presented the award to Nadia Tariq, Program Services Coordinator for Respiratory Care. These two Classified Staff members were awarded in recognition for their dedication and sincere efforts towards the work they do for their fellow colleagues and students.

end of year celebrationAt the event Kate Brown, Academic Senate President also took time to recognize and announce the retirements of Dennis Wolbers, Librarian and Curriculum Chairperson for 2016/2017 and Dean of Social Science and Creative Arts, Donna Bestock. Both of these individuals dedicated years of their lives to students and worked diligently and with heart to meet the needs of the faculty and staff around them. It was also announced that both Donna and Dennis would serve as this year’s Faculty Marshalls for the 2017 Commencement Ceremony. Kate also announced that Jesse Raskin and Jessica Hurless were this year’s winner of the Meyer Excellent in Teaching Award. This award recognizes the contributions of a faculty member in their first five years of hiring who demonstrate excellence in teaching, on/ off campus activities, and overall collegiality.

And last but certainly not least, our esteemed president, Dr. Regina Stanback Stroud presented the President’s Excellence in Leadership Award to Regina Morrison, Director of Financial Aid in recognition for the significant impacts she has made at Skyline College. Through her outstanding dedication, leadership and mentorship, exceptional performance, ingenuity, and ability to build strong community relationships she has been able to contribute and connect with those she works with in a positive and meaningful way. She is an inspiring leader to those around her and her deliberate focus to maintain a “student first” approach in everything she does is done so with passion, purpose, and humility.

And with that, overall the event was well attended and a great success! The organizational team would like to thank the many hands that assisted in putting together this fun celebration. Thank you to EVERYONE that put efforts toward the donation baskets, to those who assisted in the selling of the drawing tickets, and to those that purchased them. This event would not have been as great as it was without everyone’s participation and support.  Thanks also goes to our Pacific Dining Services for arranging the catering for the event, to Annie Trinh and Linda Bertellotti for scheduling the rooms, and to facilities for room setup/ cleanup.

Have a great summer and see you all at the next End of Year Celebration in May 2018!

Article by Michele Haggar | Photos by William Nacouzi

New Program Spotlight: Counselor Liaison Program

1617 CLP CollageThis Spring 2017 semester has gotten several counselors off campus and into new offices – on our local high school campuses!

Through a collaboration with the Outreach Department and Counseling Division, students at five of our local feeder high school completed all of the steps of matriculation – application, orientation, assessment and counseling at their own high school campus.  These students received priority registration and a follow-up “How to Register” workshop led by our Campus Ambassadors.

Through campus-wide efforts to use multiple measures in placement, Counseling faculty were able to place the majority of students by using high school transcript information, external exam information or through guided self-placement measures.

The combination of campus-wide efforts to implement multiple measures and the ability to complete all the matriculation steps helped increase the number of students gain access to priority registration.  We were able to reach students that may not have been able to come to PEP because of work or may have otherwise waited to matriculate in August. By engaging students as early as February, they were able to get a clear roadmap of the next year of college.

We partnered with El Camino High School, South San Francisco High School, Oceana High School, Capuchino High School and Jefferson High School.

The overall number of students who participated was 216. Combined with PEP, Skyline College assisted 379 high school students in completing their steps to enrollment.  This is an increase of 118.75% from just hosting PEP alone. The goal of the program is to both start the college process with high school seniors earlier and reach out to students who may be at risk for not attending college at all.

A special thank you to the Counseling Faculty who assisted with the program, the student ambassadors and staff who managed the administrative components of the program, and the high school administrators and faculty who provided us the space and opportunity to support their students.

Article by Suzanne Poma and Lauren Ford | Photos by Suzanne Poma

Meta-Majors and Guided Pathways: A Semester in Review

As the spring semester comes to a close, we wanted to take a moment to reflect back on the progress of the Meta Majors and Guided Pathways work.  It has been a busy, and sometimes challenging semester, but we head into summer on a positive note and having accomplished a great amount of preliminary work.

This semester began with the creation of the Skyline College Meta Majors and Guided Pathways Design Team.  This is a team of approximately 30 faculty, staff and administrators from all different parts of the campus who volunteered to engage at a deeper level on the work of the College redesign.  The work on the initiative kicked off at the January flex day meetings.  At this two-day event, Skyline College participants worked in small groups led by Design Team members to discuss and examine the placement of Degrees and Certificates. From this work, data were gathered and compiled to be presented at the campus-wide division meeting.  The January Flex Days were also the first time anyone could sign up to be on a Work Team.  The Work Teams, guided by Design Team Facilitators, discuss and provide feedback on the Meta Majors and Guided Pathways from their departmental perspectives.

Throughout the many Work Team and Design Team meetings this semester, it became clear that this needed to be a faculty-led initiative.  In April, the Design Team nominated Carla Grandy, Mustafa Popal and Jesse Raskin to serve as the faculty co-leads.  These three faculty members are currently working weekly with the Deans, Design Team and Administration to help guide this work.  It should be noted that the faculty co-leads are not experts, but they have an emerging understanding of the initiative and are available to work with anyone who wants to understand Meta Majors and Guided Pathways better or to get more involved with the work.

The roll out of Meta Majors and Guided Pathways at Skyline College will affect our entire community and over the course of the semester, many questions, comments and concerns surfaced.  The Design Team worked with MCPR to create a website dedicated to the Meta Majors and Guided Pathways initiative.  The website http://www.skylinecollege.edu/metamajors also has a place where anyone can anonymously submit questions and concerns to the Design Team.  This was used for the first campus-wide open forum, co-hosted with Academic Senate, on May 16, 2017.  The goal of the Campus Forum was to provide an open opportunity for all to get (re)introduced to the initiative and to ask: ‘how will this impact my role at Skyline College, the programs I am committed to, and the students I work with?  Approximately 30 faculty, staff and administrators attended the forum with additional questions ranging from, “What have other colleges done?” to “How does this initiative help with the equity gap?” The event provided clarity, but was really a chance for the faculty co-leads to collect questions and work towards answers.  They are currently in the process of creating documents to address those questions that will be posted on the website and shared throughout the campus.  With its success, future campus-wide open forums on more specific topics related to the work will be held next year, so stay tuned!

Another accomplishment of this semester was the work session on May 19, 2017, that brought faculty from divisions across campus together with counseling faculty to engage in conversations and to develop sequences of their core courses. This was the continuation of the work that had started in some divisions during May division meetings. From our perspective, it was exciting to see instructional and counseling faculty working together, asking and answering questions to make intentional sequencing choices of their degrees and certificates with student success as the end goal!  We are hoping for 100% completion of sequences by May 31, 2017, so there is still time to submit and the faculty co-leads are available to help with this.

While it has been a semester of questions, challenges and sometimes frustration, anytime major changes are being implemented that is to be expected.  But, if we keep the end goal of student success at the center of everything we do, this work will result in collaboration, intentionality, growth and improved success for our students!

Article by Jessica Hurless

Los Hermanos Celebrates 10 Years!

hermanos celebrationOn May 21, 2017 Los Hermanos celebrated its 10th year at Skyline College by hosting a 10-Year Celebration Dinner and Fundraiser at Morelos Hall in South San Francisco.  An evening filled with honors, live music, and dancing was dedicated to the accomplishments of Hermanos students who continue to make a positive impact in their communities.

The evening kicked off with a warm welcome from Liliana Rivera and Alberto Santellan followed by dinner donated by La Tapatia which included a variety of meats, chips, and aguas frescas.  The entertainment for the event included Ballet Folklorico & Mariachi, Alma De Mexico whose beautiful dancing and music had many of the attendees on their feet!  As the evening continued speeches were made from Hermano and Hermana alumni Jose Milan, class of 2007, Luis de Paz, class of 2008, and Kristal Lugo, class of 2017.  During the event, Los Hermanos was honored with proclamations and congratulatory commendations, including: Proclamation: City of South San Francisco, Karyl Matsumoto, Proclamation: Office of Assemblyman Gene Mullin, and Congratulatory Commendation: Office of Congresswoman Jackie Speier.

hermanos celebrationThe evening featured a keynote address by Dr. Cèsar Cruz, educator, author, and activist.  Dr. Cruz shared memorable insights surrounding his own personal history as an immigrant, the hidden cultural histories and achievements of Latinx activists, and encouraged students to take charge of their education.  His powerful speech was very moving to the over 150 people in attendance that included Hermanos and Hermanos students from the past 10 years, Skyline College faculty, community members, and city council members.

The Los Hermanos Program at Skyline College has positively impacted the lives of hundreds of young Latino males.  As we celebrated that evening, we also thanked the fierce educators who had a vision to develop the scope, quality, accessibility and accountability, of programs and services.  A vision to fulfill the college’s role as a leading academic and cultural center for our community.  Thank you Dr. Luis Escobar, Jacqueline Escobar, Pablo Gonzalez, Felix Perez, and Adolfo Leiva.  And, thank you to the educators who have played integral roles in the success of Los Hermanos for the past 10 years.

This evening would not have been possible without the support of our sponsors who have donated to ensure the sustainability of Los Hermanos: Financial Partners, First National Bank, Kiwanis Club, New York Life Insurance Company, Guillermo “Memo” Morantes, San Mateo Credit Union, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, South San Francisco Scavengers, and Karyl Matsumoto SSF City Counsel.

Also, thank you to the donors who have contributed to make the event a huge success: Antigua Café, Balleet Folklocico & Mariachi, Alma De Mexico, Brentwood Bowl, Cable Care Café, Ceja Vineyards Sonoma, Dave’s Carpets, DiNapoli Ristorante, Grand Avenue Hardware, Guillermo “Memo” Morantes, Fatima & Uriel Rios, Iris Flowers, Jalisco Market, La Tapatia, Luminous Day Spa, Pablo Gonzalez, Raul Duenas Floral and Event Design, Round Pond Estate, R.V. Visions Photography, Sociedad Mexicana Mutualista Morelos, School House Deli, Thai Satay Restaurant

A special thanks to emcee: Gustavo Lopez, Photographer Sthive Valencia, and Fresko the DJ.

Article by Alberto Santellan | Photos by Sthive Valencia

First Ever Alternative High School & Community College Partnership Convening for Region

Alt Ed Convening CollageOn Friday, May 12, over 70 educators from across the northern California region joined The Career Advancement Academy (CAA) and Career Ladders Project (CLP) for the first ever Exploring and Expanding Alternative High School Community College Partnership Convening held at the College of San Mateo. All three San Mateo County Community College District (SMCCD) Colleges and guests from across the region gathered to identify and highlight promising practices that lead to increased enrollment and retention for alternative high school students. Equal Measure, which serves as a third-party evaluator for the CAA programs, provided a conceptual framework to think about the alternative high school to community college transition work and identified research-based, nationwide best practices for opportunity youth programming. The event’s documented inquiry and learning will result in a published brief (late fall) for those exploring, building, refining, and scaling bridge programs aimed at connecting alternative education students to college and career.

In California, ‘alternative school’ refers to seven types of schools and programs that provide different educational settings for students who are behind in school. During the 2014-2015 academic year, California had 973 alternative schools, enrolling 136,587 students. This represents 10% of all schools in California, with about 12 percent of all seniors finishing 12th grade at an alternative school. By creating a “bridge to the bridge,” the Career Advancement Academy aims to scale their most promising and effective innovations and increase alignment and collaboration with education feeder partners—especially adult education, continuation high schools, and alternative high schools.

This community of practice sought to gather experts, practitioners, and partners to exchange ideas, test and get feedback on promising practices, and provide educators a time and space to connect with colleagues engaged in similar work. In the morning, attendees received a national and state overview of alternative education and community college connective work, followed by a county overview with each SMCCCD college presenting on a current or impending innovative program. Skyline College showcased the Baden Alternative High School College and Career Readiness course, a CAA dual enrollment bridge program created in collaboration with Skyline College and Baden High School Faculty and Staff. This spring semester, the fourth cohort had 100% successful completion rate and all cohorts have an average Skyline College connection (enrollment) rate of 70% post-bridge program.

A special thanks to all of the day’s presenters, the facilitators and event organizers who helped make the convening such a success including: Elisha Arrillaga and the team from CLP, Jennifer Taylor Mendoza Dean of Academic Support and Learning Technologies at the College of San Mateo, Anniqua Rana, Dean of Athletics, Kinesiology, Dance, Library at Cañada college, along with the Meg Long and Georgia Kioukis from Equal Measure who framed the day and documented the shared learning. The Alternative Education community of practice will continue to engage in idea and resource exchange via an online community of learning and keep the conversation going for folks deeply engaged in the important work of connecting alternative high school students to college and career.

The Career Advancement Academy connects students to higher wage careers and opportunities in higher education by integrating accelerated and contextualized English and math, career technical education, and integrated student support. Currently, the Career Advancement Academy has programs in Allied Health, Automotive Technology, Biotechnology, and Legal Careers with additional bridge programming at Baden High School and Goodwill Industries. For more information about the Career Advancement Academy or related programs, please contact Jeremy Evangelista, evangelistaJ@smccd.edu or visit http://www.skylinecollege.edu/caa/ .

Article by Alina Varona || Photos by Dan Figueroa

End-of-Year Party Celebrates Transferring International Students!

International StudentsThe Skyline College International Student Program (ISP) held an event to wave their final goodbyes to the international students who will be transferring to universities after this semester. This get-together took place in the Multicultural Center on May 18, 2017.

The emcees of the event were the current International Student Club (ISC) President, Candice Sum and the new president, Naledi Mthembu. Dr. Tammy Robinson, Dean of Global Learning Services and Programs presented the transfer students with certificates to celebrate their achievements. To keep the students entertained, members of the ISC recited various music acts and a spoken word poetry performance. There was also a photo booth for students to capture the moments and share with their friends. The people in attendance ate their hearts out with food from all around the world. They had coxinha from Brazil, fried rice from China, Nepalese dumplings and lastly, Arabian baklava for dessert. To close off the event, a few lucky winners received prizes from the raffle that was drawn.

Many of the transferring students are transferring to top schools such as UC Berkley and UC Davis. Even though it is sad to see them leave, we are so proud of their achievements and wish them the best for their journeys after Skyline College.

Article by Naledi Mthembu | Photo by Rossmia Coo

EOPS/CARE and CalWORKs End of Year Celebration

Graduation Group PictureOn Friday, May 12, 2017, EOPS/CARE and CalWORKs held their annual End of Year Celebration to honor the graduates and transfer students in the programs.  Forty-eight EOPS/CARE and CalWORKs students were recognized at the event for their academic accomplishments in graduating and/or transferring to a four-year institution during the 2016-2017 academic year.

Lasana Hotep, Dean of Student Equity and Support Programs kicked off the celebration with an inspirational welcome.

Luis de Alba, the EOPS/CARE and CalWORKs student speaker, addressed the audience with confidence and shared his story of perseverance in addition to how EOPS has positively impacted his educational journey at Skyline College.

Furthermore, Ayesha Iqbal, Abel Jimenez, and Luis Jibaja were acknowledged for receiving this year’s EOPS Staff Scholarships.

EOPS/CARE and CalWORKs graduates and transfer students received a Certificate of Recognition along with an EOPS graduation stole.

The celebration concluded with a group photo to capture this moment of academic achievement; it really was a time to celebrate!

Article by Jessica Lopez | Photos by Brittney Sneed

Career Services Center- Semester in Review!

career fair attendeesThe Career Services Center has had one busy semester and we want to take a moment to share some of the exciting news and results from the programs and services we shared with our students and campus.

Spring 2017 Career Fair

On Tuesday, April 18 from 9:30 AM- 12:30 PM the Career Services Center team hosted the annual Career Fair, an event designed to provide students exposure to various career options, part-time and full-time jobs, and summer internships. The fair allows students to engage in conversations with employers in a wide variety of fields and to learn what they might be looking for in an employee.

The overall experience both for Skyline College students and employers was exciting! Students shared in their responses provided in our Student Evaluations that the Career Fair informed them of “…jobs out there that I didn’t even think were paying jobs!”

Other students stated “a lot of jobs have flexible hours that work around my hours as a student and for me that was important.”

And one student expressed excitement as the Career Fair “informed me of different areas within the job industry.”

Clearly, for many students, the Career Fair was about not only job exploration, but career exploration as well. Students were able to connect with these employers and engage in meaningful conversations about how the industries worked.

For employers, Skyline College students impressed to say the least. Employers from the health and wellness, marketing and sales, and fashion industry were all in attendence. In their responses in the employer evaluations, one representative stated “students were engaged and seemed very much interested in learning about the opportunities we had.” In fact, according to data collected during the event, employers made connections with over 100 students.

Special thanks to Pacific Dining Catering and Skyline College Bookstore Manager Kevin Chak for his generous donations to students.

Employer Connections

Over the course of the semester the Career Center hosted Get Work Wednesdays, another opportunity for students to connect with various employers within the community that are in search for part-time and full-time employees. Some employers were also looking to connect students who would be interested in internships. We are excited to say based on the data collected, over 200 students connected with these employers. And some of these employers reported that they were in the process of hiring students they had connected with during their visit.

Again, the job search for both students and employers is on-going and we feel that in addition to the annual career fairs we host, exposure to job opportunities need to remain consistent and Get Work Wednesdays allows for us to continue to meet the on-going needs of our students and local employers within our community.

Collaborations with our Skyline College Community

In addition to the career fairs, the center also makes great efforts to work collaboratively with various learning communities and programs on campus to help prepare students for the world of work. For example, the Career Services Center team conducted and collaborated with cosmetology, Middle College, and the paralegal program via classroom presentations and at the paralegal night, the Clean Energy and Sustainability program, in counseling courses, with the International Student Program, Women’s Mentoring and Leadership Academy and other programs and services to provide workshops, discussions, and support pertaining to job preparation. Additionally, Career Services coordinated with Parkway Heights Middle School and South San Francisco High School by presenting to students on career exploration. With over 30 workshops conducted over the course of the semester, students in attendance of these workshops reported in the student evaluations that the presentations contributed to their understanding of careers. One student who attended “The Myth Behind Interviews” shared that the “the discussion about the different types of questions asked during an interview were really helpful.”

Overall, the Career Services Center was excited to support so many students. We are looking very much forward to another year full of programs, workshops, and more opportunities for career and major exploration. Keep an eye out for our events calendar that should be arriving in your mailboxes when school begins in the fall of 2017.

Special thanks to the faculty, staff, and administrators on campus that have contributed to our work through collaboration and support! We couldn’t do what we do for our students if it wasn’t for you!

On behalf of the Career Services Center staff, have a great summer and see you in the fall!

Article and photo by Michele Haggar