Monthly Archives: September 2017

SPARC Meeting Updates

The Skyline College Strategic Planning and Allocation of Resources Committee (SPARC) held its first meeting for Fall 2017 on Thursday, September 28, 2017.

Adoption of District Metrics

Aaron McVean, Vice Chancellor of Educational Services and Planning, and Jacqueline Honda, Interim Dean of Planning, Research and Institutional Effectiveness, gave an update on the District Strategic Plan, which focuses on Students First, Student Success, Equity and Social Justice.  They shared the newly developed college metrics for measuring student success and completion.  A Task Force designed the targets to be aspirational yet also realistic.  The metrics were presented to the Board and can be found here: The committee discussed the metrics and recommended adopting the goals to the College Governance Council for review.


Accreditation Timeline

Dean Honda shared the upcoming accreditation timetable with the committee.  The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) had recently undergone some changes.  One of the changes is the Self Study is expected to be written concisely and technically, no more than 100 pages compared to the prior one of 500 pages.  The projected timeline can be viewed here:


SMCCCD 2017-18 Final Budget

The committee briefly reviewed the 2017-18 District Final Budget. The Budget details can be viewed at


2017-2018 Fund 1 Adopted Budget

Eloisa Briones, Vice President of Administrative Services, shared the Adopted Budget for Skyline College. She noted the budget is based on 7,346 FTES and load of 525.  The FTES goal is an increase from the Tentative Budget of 7,242 FTES.  The total budget is $41,772,341.


District Committee on Budget and Finance Update

The committee also received a report from Judy Hutchinson and Eloisa Briones on the first meeting of the District Committee on Budget and Finance.  Highlights included the San Mateo County Community College District 2017-18 Budget, OPEB and Retirement Trust fund information, Public Safety report as well as update colleges’ Promise programs.  All three colleges have implemented a Promise Scholars program.  The District has implemented of some of the 71 recommendations included in the Public Safety study conducted by consultants Margolis/Healy earlier this year.  The study as well as Management Recommendations will be released in the near future.

The next meeting is October 26, 2017 (Thursday) from 2:10 to 4:00 p.m. in Room 6-203.


Article by Judy Hutchinson

Welcome Angelica Soria Mendoza, Office Assistant in the President’s Administrative Suite

Please welcome Angelica Soria Mendoza to Skyline College.  Angelica will serve as the Office Assistant in the President’s Administrative Suite.  She comes to us from our sister colleges where she has served as an office assistant in the Center for Student Life and Leadership Development at Cañada College and the Language Arts Division at College of San Mateo.  Angelica holds an Associate Degree in Communications from Cañada College. She is currently a student at Notre Dame de Namur where she is completing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration.  Please extend our Skyline College welcome.

Groundbreaking Ceremony for Environmental Sciences Building

Groundbreaking flyerIt is an exciting time at Skyline College, with the groundbreaking of the new Environmental Science Building overlooking the ocean scheduled for Tuesday, October 3, 2017 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. 

The spectacular Environmental Science Building, the first building at Skyline College with a view of the Pacific, encourages us to look to the horizon and educate for the future, creating a shared locus for educational activity and community events.

The lecture halls will be able to host private seminars when not scheduled for academic use, classrooms will double as event spaces, and the gallery with its expansive views of the sea and coastline will support community and enterprise functions as well as student art displays.

Building Features

  • Two 56-seat classroom/labs
  • Two 119-seat tiered lecture halls
  • Academic offices
  • Outdoor learning space
  • 21,000 square feet
  • LEED Gold certification target
  • Zero Net Energy-ready

For more information on the construction projects currently underway or planned on campus, visit

We look forward to celebrating this milestone with each of you!

Article by MCPR Team

Annual Security Report Now Available

Pursuant to the Jeanne Clery Act, the San Mateo County Community College District (SMCCCD) Department of Public Safety is publishing the 2017 Annual Security Report for Cañada College, College of San Mateo and Skyline College.

SMCCCD’s 2017 Annual Security Report (ASR), required by the Clery Act, includes statistics for the previous three years concerning reported crimes that occurred on campus; in certain off-campus buildings owned or controlled by SMCCCD; and on public property within, or immediately adjacent to and accessible from SMCCCD.  Our 2017 Annual Security Report also outlines various campus safety and security policies, such as those concerning crime reporting, prevention and response to sexual and gender violence, alcohol and drug use, crime prevention, emergency response and evacuation procedures and other matters.  The 2017 Annual Security Report also includes important tips to help every member of the community remain safe and avoid becoming a victim of crime.  The 2017 Annual Security Report is now available at  You can also obtain a copy of this report by contacting the Department of Public Safety at the District Office or any of the three Campuses (650) 738-7000.


Article by William Woods

FunnelBack: New Search Engine for Skyline College Website

As a part of our overall Promise redesign, the Skyline College website launched a brand new search engine called FunnelBack, which provides students, faculty and staff a vastly improved search experience. With this search engine, the campus community will now be able to quickly and efficiently find and sort any information within our site.

The advanced search function allows students to filter by professor, degrees, pdf, class schedule, course number, phone number, etc. The best way to see everything the new search has to offer is to visit and start using it. The more that people use the tool, the more data it will provide, which we can use to analyze trends and statistics on our website to customize the results, and ultimately provide a better, more cohesive experience to students.

Part two of our FunnelBack search launch is the new Skyline College homepage design. A more responsive homepage featuring FunnelBack went live on September 22, 2017.

The new homepage was designed to give students a better look into what the college has to offer by bringing the elements of the dropdown menu into the page, providing a more interactive experience with different communities within the college. We hope the brief descriptions will help increase the understanding of these programs, while the new placement will increase their visibility.

Lastly, we improved our mobile experience to meet the demands of a changing web landscape. Every year mobile devices account for an increasing amount of internet traffic. We want our website to reflect this change. We ultimately want our site to be as easy to use on a phone, as it is on a desktop computer. We still have a long way to go, and we appreciate any feedback you have on the new design as we continue on our journey to provide the best college experience for students. Please send any feedback to Brian Collins, Web Programmer Analyst.

With the FunnelBack implementation and new design, we are driving forward in our mission to enable students to find the materials and the resources they need to graduate on time and succeed in their educational pursuits.

Article by MCPR Team

New Curriculum Committee Lab Times!

The Curriculum Committee has instituted a new lab time as a resource for faculty!

Curriculum Labs are opportunities for faculty and new division committee representatives to meet with the Articulation Officer and committee co-chairs to discuss curriculum-related questions, work hands-on with CurricUNET and get help with course modifications, transfer requirements, technical review, Comprehensive Program Review and more.

The curriculum lab schedule for the year can be found at

All faculty are welcome, so feel free to stop by!

Article by Marianne Beck & Jessica Hurless

Welcome New Distance Education Coordinator Christopher Collins

The Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning (CTTL) is pleased to welcome Christopher Collins as the new Distance Education (DE) Coordinator. As an adjunct history instructor, Christopher began his teaching career in 2012 teaching traditional and online courses at numerous Bay Area colleges. Christopher has been at Skyline College since 2013.

Christopher holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in History from California State University, Sacramento, with a specialization in Race, Gender and Sexuality in Early America. He is currently pursuing a doctorate in Educational Leadership at California State University, San Francisco.

Christopher loves teaching courses online because it allows students to understand course content at their own pace in an environment that is most conducive to learning. From conversations with many students, Christopher has consistently noted that students appreciate online courses because they can complete the coursework in the middle of the night and replay a lecture as many times as necessary.

Christopher believes online learning is important because of twenty-first century technological changes. Not only are students acquiring necessary content from taking an online course, students are developing such skills as time management, pace setting and successful study habits that will carry them far beyond their academic aspirations.

Based on his experience teaching online courses for various Bay Area colleges, Christopher has observed the benefits and challenges for faculty and students. Convenience is the most identified benefit of teaching online courses. However, support is perhaps the most common challenge. As DE Coordinator at Skyline College, Christopher hopes to provide that support and assist faculty in creating dynamic online courses using robust 21st century technology and best practices to enhance the academic goals of student success.  He is located in CTTL, Building 1, Office 1-311E, and can be reached at (650) 738-7901 or via email at


Article by CTTL | Photo by Kevin Perez



Coaches Available to Help You Strengthen Your Assessment Game!

Whether you’re new to student learning outcomes (SLO) assessment or have been a member of your department’s team for years, seasoned players are available to coach you to achieve your potential.

At this point, you’ve assessed all of your courses and/or programs, though you may feel dissatisfied with the process. Perhaps the SLOs don’t fully capture the core elements of the course and/or program; perhaps the assessment itself doesn’t reflect the core knowledge and skills you hold students accountable to; perhaps it’s not clear what to do with the results; perhaps you need a refresher on how to use TracDat…however you’d like to strengthen your SLO assessment game, SLOAC coaches are available to help you to strategize.

In addition to one-on-one assistance, take advantage of two upcoming opportunities: (a) October 11 morning flex workshops, in which you can become well versed in the assessment cycle, or focus on only one major stage of the cycle, or (b) SLOs on the Road workshops that can take place during your department meeting geared to you and your colleagues’ specific needs.

Learn how to make assessment meaningful, sustainable, worth your time and most importantly— with the students’ best interests in mind. Be empowered to field the best team possible.

Please contact Coordinator of Institutional Effectiveness Karen Wong at x4369 if you have any questions or would like to schedule help from coaches individually or departmentally.

Article by Karen Wong



Cosmetology Club Hurricane Relief Fundraiser

The overwhelming support and excitement for the Skyline College Cosmetology Club Hurricane Relief Fundraiser hosted on September 20, 2017 was more than the students and staff could have ever expected. After countless weeks of preparation, this student-run club overseen by program coordinator Cassidy Ryan welcomed over 100 guests in the salon and spa that evening. Event guests had the opportunity to let loose and indulge with mocktails, appetizers, styling, mini facials and so much more. The charitable contributions allowed the Cosmetology Club to donate $2,000.00 towards the Professional Beauty Association Disaster Relief Fund. Established in 1955 by the National Cosmetology Association, the Disaster Relief Fund assists salon professionals in rebuilding their lives following the devastation of a natural disaster. One hundred percent of funds donated go directly to beauty industry professionals.

“Being able to help those in need just by doing something that I love makes all the work worthwhile,” Brianna Maestas, Cosmetology senior student said.

Anna McCarty-Cox, Cosmetology junior student and Cosmetology Club President remarked, “The turnout and success of this event was amazing. It has inspired the Cosmetology Club cabinet members and I to continue to go above and beyond for future events. I want to thank all the students who participated during our Hurricane Relief Fundraiser. Charity is love and giving back to those in need is the best way to show the world we care.”

Cassidy Ryan, Program Coordinator and Club Advisor, said, “We are thrilled to have welcomed so many individuals from the campus and community in to enjoy our facilities. We thank you for your continued support of the Cosmetology and Wellness programs.”

Article by Robyn Ledesma | Photo by Carmen Richardson

SparkPoint at Skyline College and Second Harvest Food Bank Work to End Hunger

On September 25, 2017, Alexandra Kennedy visited the Career Center to facilitate a design charrette of the Moon Shot Project, a series of focus groups where community members come together to create solutions that will end hunger.

Kennedy is a former SparkPoint at Skyline College client and student assistant who specialized in public benefits. SparkPoint at Skyline College has led to her professional development, educational persistence and career interests. Kennedy successfully graduated from Skyline College, transferred to the University of San Francisco and is currently an employee of the Second Harvest Food Bank as a Community Liaison on the Moonshot Team, an innovative effort to make food accessible to all.

Kennedy is passionate about advocating for people of all walks of life who have barriers to accessing public benefits. Through SparkPoint, she has been able to put her passion to action and change lives.

When Kennedy worked in the Public Benefits office at SparkPoint, she advocated for many students and community members who were struggling to make ends meet. She shared how one client, a woman who was recently divorced and left to raise two children on her own, entered the SparkPoint Public Benefits office in a crisis. Her status drastically changed from a married affluent San Francisco home-owner to the head of household living below the poverty line with two boys to feed and raise. Since she had been a stay-at-home mom for almost a decade and was not used to living in poverty, she was unaware of resources that could help lift the burden of feeding children without an income. Kennedy advocated for and connected this family to an improved living situation.

Despite public benefits, 700,000 people go hungry or are at risk of going hungry in the San Mateo and Santa Clara County. The Second Harvest Food Bank envisions a community where no one goes hungry.

To address the question, “How might our community ensure that every one of us is well-fed from now on?” staff, faculty and students gathered in groups at the Career Center to develop and share innovative ideas on such themes as food access, community empowerment, education and technology.

  • Offer food to the homeless, using leftovers at food drives, farmer’s markets, food banks and community gardens.
  • Use technology or social media to educate and connect folks.
  • Empower youth to get involved, such as the H.E.L.P. club in Palo Alto, a group of high school students who garden, grow and give food and provide college credits for service hours.
  • Young people could prepare and deliver meals to the elderly.
  • Start up a grocery delivery system developed to make nutritious food accessible to low-income families; tax unhealthy foods to subsidize healthy meals.
  • Create an application that connects the community around food access and insecurity. People in the community could request food and local neighbors could help one another by donating prepared meals and groceries.
  • Collaborate across programs; host community events that build community and reduce stigma.
  • Use social media to connect folks, spread awareness and share information.
  • Meet people where they are at; provide fresh fruits and vegetables to homes, and public spaces including parks, libraries, fast food restaurants, parking lots and bus stops.
  • Get involved! Vote and organize community to elect the right leaders.

The Second Harvest Food Bank envisions a hunger-free community. SparkPoint at Skyline College is on board. Together, we will make a significant impact in the quest to end hunger. No child should go hungry. When we match creative solutions with resources, we can transform our society. The Moon Shot Project is a prime example of innovative community building and research by the community and for the community.

Article by Valerie Higgins | Photo by Valerie Higgins and Chad Thompson