Monthly Archives: May 2017

Delegation Bound for NCORE 2017

NCORE 2017 DelegationIn collaboration with the Office of the Vice President of Instruction and the Division of Student Equity and Support Programs, the Center for Transformative Teaching & Learning (CTTL) is pleased to announce that Skyline College will be sending its 4th delegation to the 2017 National Conference on Race & Ethnicity in Fort Worth, Texas. NCORE is the leading conference on issues of race and ethnicity in higher education. With hundreds of breakout sessions, the 5-day conference provides a forum for critical conversations and exchanges of information about race and ethnicity.

The Advisory Committee for Employee Development (ACED) reviewed delegate applications and selected 3 faculty and 2 classified staff to represent Skyline College at the conference. This year’s faculty delegates include Jessica Lopez, Nathan Jones, and Liza Erpelo; classified staff delegates are Michele Haggar and Jorge Murillo. Each delegate will participate in a half-day, pre-conference institute on a topic they have selected:

  • “Complexity of Student-Centered Work, Race, and Inclusion in the Academy” (Haggar)
  • “Black Identity Development at American Higher Education Institutions” (Jones)
  • “Latinos in Higher Education: Moving the Equity Needle” (Jimenez)
  • “Fundamentals of Social Justice Education” (Erpelo)
  • “Intersectional Interventions: Supporting Queer & Trans Students of Color” (Murillo)

In addition to the pre-conference institute and numerous conference sessions, delegates’ NCORE experiences will also include keynote speakers such as international thought leader, Dr. Juliet V. Garcia; Franchesca Ramsey, actress/writer/video blogger; Jenny Yang and Hari Kondabolu, comedians; and Evon Peter, Vice Chancellor for Rural, Community, and Native Education at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks.

Upon completion of the conference, delegates will lead CTTL-sponsored on-campus workshops/activities on NCORE themes and topics; facilitate discussions on NCORE-related issues specifically relevant to Skyline College; and apply NCORE concepts to campus and/or District-wide equity-related activities. We look forward to what Jessica, Nathan, Liza, Michele, and Jorge will have to share with the Skyline College community.

Article by Nina Floro

College Governance: SPARC Meeting

The Skyline College Strategic Planning and Allocation of Resources Committee (SPARC) held its last meeting for Spring 2017 on Thursday, May 11, 2017.

Climate Action Plan Update

Grandy Bocsary, Skyline Sustainability Coordinator gave an overview of the Skyline Climate Action Plan to the Committee.  The plan is available for review on the website  Public comments may be submitted via the website for the next several weeks.  The next steps is presentation at the College Governance Council on May 24th and taken to Board of Trustees in September 2017.  Suggestions from the committee included for the plan to be reviewed with the SEEED – Stewardship for Equity, Equal Employment and Diversity committee as well as the newly formed Community of Practice on Social Justice and Sustainability through the Center for Teaching and Learning.

2017-2018 Fund 1 Budget Scenarios Update

Eloisa Briones, Vice President of Administrative Services updated the committee on the Tentative Budget Scenarios.  Some minor changes from the original scenarios include a reduction in the International Student Growth allocation.  The committee adopted the middle case scenario based on a goal of 7,242 FTES and load of 525 for use in the Tentative Budget.  This scenario reflects a balanced budget of expenditures to resource allocation with a slight surplus of $10,460.

Budget Update

VP Briones also presented a memo from the State Chancellor’s Office on the Governor’s May Revise Budget for 2017-18.  The State’s property and income tax receipts in April was lower than originally projected.  However, the overall budget is very positive for community colleges.

District Committee on Budget and Finance Update

The committee also received a report from Barbara Lamson on the last meeting of the District Committee on Budget and Finance.  Highlights included international student funding model, Retiree Benefits Trust fund information as well as update on the Skyline housing project. Currently, the project is under review by the City of San Bruno and once approved will issue permits.

Next meeting is September 14, 2017 (Thursday) from 2:10 to 4:00 p.m. in Room 6-203

Article by Judy Hutchinson

Construction Begins Next Week on Lot L

Skyline College will take its first step in upgrading campus facilities with the expansion and renovation of Parking Lot L. On Tuesday, May 30, Lot L will be closed.  On Monday, June 5, the area will be fenced so that construction can begin. The work begins with demolition of fences, curbs, light poles, and the existing asphalt.


The new parking lot will have 500 paved spaces — up from the 100 paved spaces and 200 dirt spaces currently there. The new Lot L will have accessible parking and more electric vehicle charging stations. A path through a new landscaped area at northern end of Lot L will lead to the great view of the ocean.


The project will also include a new connection from the north Loop Road to Chilton Lane, which will become Lot T for staff parking.  Lot T will be blocked at both ends with bollards that can be removed in an emergency but will keep college traffic from travelling through the neighborhood.


In a related project, work will begin on Monday, May 22, on a new fenced enclosure in Lot C so the Automotive Technology program can relocate vehicles from its current storage area near Loma Chica.  The fence in Lot C is expected to be finished before commencement on Friday, May 26, and the vehicles will be moved the following Tuesday, May 30.


Lot L construction will be complete in November. Please refer to the Capital Improvement Projects website for updates on all the projects coming to Skyline College.

Draft Climate Action Plan Available for Comment

Staying true to our sustainability values, Skyline College has drafted its first Climate Action Plan (CAP).  The CAP aims to be a reference document to help the campus plan for predicted climate changes by reducing carbon emissions and growing as a sustainability stronghold in the community.  Using a breakdown of Skyline College’s emission sources, it discusses why reduction measures are important, what the college has done and is doing to reduce, and suggests what reduction strategies can be used in the future.  It also makes the case on the importance of providing students more opportunities to learn and practice sustainability through the curriculum and community engagement.


The CAP is available for public comment until June 2, 2017.  Please review the plan and comment with any criticisms or suggestions.  You can access the plan here:


These comments are vital to the plan’s success by assuring it aligns with the opinions and goals of the community.  After the period of public comment, your suggestions will be considered and integrated into the CAP.  Thank you for your time to make Skyline College a more sustainable campus.


Any questions about the plan, or sustainability in general, may be directed to Sustainability Coordinator Dainen Bocsary at


Article by Dainen Bocsary

Faculty Leads Selected for Communities of Practice (CoP)

Communities of Practice (CoP) at Skyline College are an opportunity to bring together small interdisciplinary teams of staff, faculty and administrators to creatively and collaboratively discuss, strategize and create new knowledge around pedagogy or academia-related problems of mutual interest.


The Academic Support and Learning Technologies (ASLT) Division, in partnership with the Office of Student Equity and Support Programs (SESP), is excited to move forward with CoP next semester. The purpose of CoP is to provide a new professional development space for staff, faculty and administrators, that directly supports and advances Skyline College’s mission to help students to “Get in, Get through, and Get out…on time.” ASLT and SESP are excited to announce the faculty leads selected for CoP that will run during the 2017-2018 academic year:


Social Justice and Sustainability – Carla Grandy

Service Learning – Jesse Raskin

Transformative Teaching and Pedagogy – John Ulloa

Online and Hybrid Learning – Christopher Collins and Kimberly Saccio-Kent


CoP hopes to engage staff, faculty and administrators in a dedicated space to create solutions that will improve teaching and learning for faculty and students at Skyline College. The Communities of Practice will begin their work in the fall semester with an official launch on Flex Day, August 15th. During the breakout sessions, there will be an opportunity to learn about each CoP topic area, its relevance to our campus community, and how staff, faculty and administrators can actively participate in an experience to help address issues affecting our campus. We look forward to full engagement from the Skyline College community in this important work. See you on Flex Day!


Article By: Katrina Pantig and Bianca Rowden-Quince

LAST CHANCE for Students to Apply for the CollegeSavers Matched Savings Program

One of SparkPoint and Career Services most popular programs is coming to an end.  The  CollegeSavers program is offered to Skyline College students through a partnership with Opportunity Fund, a national non-profit organization focused on helping individuals get in the habit of saving money.  By enrolling in this program, eligible students will receive $2 for every $1 that they save, up to a maximum of $4,000 contributed by Opportunity Fund.


Unfortunately, Opportunity Fund has lost its federal funding and will no longer be accepting new applicants in the future. However, there is a window between now and June 1 within which program applications will still be accepted!


Our SparkPoint Coordinators, Flor Lopez and Rhonda Kaufman, are able to assist individual students fill out and submit these applications.  Additionally, SparkPoint is hosting two information sessions on May 31, at which an Opportunity Fund representative will be on campus to talk about the program and how to apply.


Please forward this information to any and all students who may be interested, noting the urgency of the situation.  Interested students should make an appointment with Rhonda or Flor before May 31, by contacting SparkPoint at 650-728-7035, or dropping by the SparkPoint Center, Room 1-214.  Interested students can also attend one of the May 31 sessions. RSVP appreciated, but not required.


Written by Chad Thompson

Early Intervention Conference Held at Skyline College

On May 5, Skyline College’s Early Childhood Education Department held the 9th annual Early Intervention Conference.  This year’s theme was “Relationships & Why They Matter.”  Conference Coordinator/Skyline faculty Elaine Francisco brought together national and local professionals for keynotes and workshops.  After opening remarks from Dean of Business Christine Roumbanis and ECE/EDU Coordinator Kate Williams Browne, the audience of nearly 200 students, faculty, and community members heard from nationally known professor Dr. Ira Glovinsky, author of two books on BiPolar Patterns and Moodswings. His keynote address on the history and foundations of the Relationship Model was followed by a breakout session on the well-known DIR Floortime Model.  Clinical psychologist Dr. Lorraine Ehlers-Flint ended the conference by sharing her knowledge of the role of emotions in schools, which she elaborated in a breakout session as well.


Workshops were also presented by parent/autism expert Joseph Coffin and speech-language pathologist Robin Hauge. Skyline College Early Intervention students assisted in running the conference, and all conference attendees were given certificates for professional growth.  Everyone clearly gained practical skills to use in the important work they do with young children of varying abilities.


Article by Kristina Brower

Energize Colleges Celebrates the Success of Its First Year

As the Spring 2017 semester ends so does year one of the Energize Colleges program. The Energize Colleges at Skyline College provides students with real-world work experience while contributing to meaningful campus and community projects tied to sustainability and energy savings. Energize Colleges develops students’ knowledge, skills, and experience to effectively evaluate energy career options and transition into the green workforce. Energize Colleges has provided 10 student internship positions that have each benefited Skyline College and the surrounding community while giving practical experience to students.


The Energize Colleges team is led by Skyline College Student and Project Coordinator Angelique Fuentes, Faculty Supervisors Dr. Carla Grandy and Dr. Carina Anttila-Suarez, SMT Division Dean, Ray Hernandez, and District Sustainability and Facilities Team Joe Fullerton, Hilary Ego, Julie Barstow, and Denise Lin. We are pleased to share the work that our Energize Colleges interns have accomplished this year:


  • Matt Floyd, Fog Catcher Data Analyst, is working with Earth Science Professor Dr. Carla Grandy and Alicia Torregrosa from the USGS on surveying fog patterns on campus, acquiring and placing a weather station and fog catcher and researching best practices for fog water capture and reuse. The goal of this project is to quantify fog water capture on campus, identify opportunities to repurpose the water, and share information with a larger network of researchers in the San Mateo County area.
  • Eric Johnson, Water Ambassador, established sampling protocols to measure the pH levels of the water in the hydration stations on campus.  Eric is creating signage to inform students about the health and environmental benefits of tap water versus bottled water, and monitoring hydration station water use.
  • Joseph Armas, Sustainability Engagement Associate, is working with Skyline View to create a video about Earth Appreciation Day on campus. Joseph also created a  Reuse Station, located in the Learning Center, to promote the ethics of reuse and waste diversion and to provide a space for students to both donate as well as receive used school supplies.
  • Kelly Wong, Resource Conservation Associate, is exploring the power of emotionally intelligent signage to inform students of resource waste on campus and studying the resulting change in behavior. Kelly also conducted an energy audit on computers located in the library and the Learning Center, which will inform a plan to reduce energy consumption. Kelly presented her findings at the Bay Area Green Careers Conference at the David Brower Center, Berkeley.
  • Sophie Borrison, Resource Conservation Associate, conducted a lighting audit to inform the SMCCCD Facilities Team about defective and non-energy efficient lighting. Additionally, Sophie is planning a water audit to inform potential water savings on campuses.
  • Zoe Robinson, Sustainability Engagement Associate, created orientation materials to share across the SMCCCD campuses for engaging students with information about sustainability-related classes, club and volunteer opportunities at each of the campuses.  Zoe also created the SMCCCD sustainability Facebook and Instagram page to highlight sustainability projects.
  • Isabella Colombo, Sustainability Engagement Associate, and Michelle Brown, Resource Conservation Associate, created a Sustainability Literacy Survey for students that was used to inform signage encouraging sustainable behavior.
  • Olivia Yancey, Service Learning and Community Education Associate, is working towards conducting research on the structure of existing learning centers at different campuses to inform the creation of our service learning center here at Skyline College. Olivia will also create connections between partnerships around the community that involve service learning opportunities that work around energy savings, clean energy, environmental policy, sustainable building infrastructures, protection of natural resources and social justice.


The first year for Energize Colleges at Skyline College was a great opportunity to assess the energy savings needs and opportunities on campus, and to make connections with faculty, staff and community organizations that are involved in increasing sustainability. For the students, it was a great opportunity to gain exposure to jobs in the green workforce as well as work on professional development through resume writing, interviewing, public speaking and project management. We are hoping that we can extend the Energize Colleges program for the next two years and continue to bring unique, fulfilling internships for the students and deliver the value of sustainability to Skyline College as a whole.


Article by Angelique Fuentes and Dr. Carla Grandy

STEM Students Present Their Work at the 5th Annual Skyline College Research Symposium

On Friday, May 5, all Skyline College Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) students were invited to present their research at the College’s annual Research Symposium. The event, typically held in early May, allows students to present their work and research while STEM faculty and visitors gather to see projects and ask students about their research areas.


Student presentations were wide-ranging with topics as diverse as made electronic instruments and descriptions of valley fever. The Biotechnology Manufacturing class featured their attempt to grow a chicken embryo outside of its shell.  Many students also presented the following day at the Bay Area Honors Symposium held at Stanford, while the Skyline Engineering and Robotics Club competed in Sacramento.


The Student Research Symposium combines class projects, individual research, honors research and club activities, with participating students asked to submit a 3×5 foot poster.  In all, 30 posters and presentations were given with over 100 visitors stopping by to view the research projects, ask questions, and support our Skyline College STEM students.


Special thanks to Dean Ray Hernandez of the SMT division who provided the posters and cupcakes, technicians Kyline Johnson, Gary Chang and Marco Wehrfritz, who were a great help in getting students the materials they needed,  Professors Case, Davis, Koskello, Kapp, Langhoff, Fredricks and Bookstaff  who all had students contribute to this year’s research symposium.


Skyline College’s Career Advancement Academy Biotechnology program—BioBridge—is supported by grant funding from the National Science Foundation, grant #1502042. Please find our Bio Bridge students featured in the pictures from the Research Symposium and keep an eye out for next year’s event!


Article and photos by Nick Kapp

Classified Staff Appreciation Breakfast Is a Great Success!

On Tuesday, May 16, as part of the Classified School Employee Appreciation (CSEW) week, CSEA (California School Employees Association) and the Classified Senate hosted their annual Classified Staff appreciation breakfast. With over 50 Classified Staff members stopping by between 8:00 am and 9:30 am, the event was well attended. We also had the pleasure of hosting Dr. Regina Stanback Stroud who shared with us her personal experiences with Classified and the important impact they made on her when she was a student. As she shared, the work we do is instrumental in giving our students the support they need throughout their experiences here at Skyline College. Sometimes it is the little things that we do that make a huge impact someone’s life.


Staff enjoyed a delicious yogurt bar, coffee and tea service, and warm connections with other staff members as we took a quick but much needed break in our day.


Both CSEA and the Classified Senate worked together to donate funds for the event as a way to highlight and show our appreciation for the tremendous amount of work Classified Staff do to support our colleagues, faculty, administrators, and of course our students.


Special thanks to Linda Allen and the appreciation breakfast committee for taking the time to prepare our breakfast. And a special thanks and shout out to Kevin Chak, Manager of our Skyline College bookstore for donating our coffee and tea service.


Thank you and have a wonderful summer!


Article and photo by: Michele Haggar