Monthly Archives: February 2019

Skyline College Welcomes the Year of the Boar!

Year of the BoarThe International Student Program (ISP), the Chinese Student & Scholar Association, and the Skyline College Asian Studies Center hosted the Chinese Lantern Festival celebration at Skyline College on February 20, 2019 at the Fireside Dining Room. This festival is traditionally celebrated on the fifteenth day of the Chinese lunisolar calendar to mark the final day of the Chinese New Year celebrations.

Professor Hui Pate opened the program by welcoming everyone to the event. The event then began in earnest with Rachel Zhang captivating the audience with a story about the history of Chinese New Year and why it is celebrated. She then invited the audience to try out the event’s activities.

Students and staff alike tested their chopsticks and Chinese trivia skills by trying to pick up a ping pong ball from a bowl of water. Each ping pong ball has a number that corresponded to a question. Correct answers were rewarded with a choice of traditional Chinese treats such as milk candy, rice crackers or sachima (a Chinese pastry). Students were also shown how to do traditional Chinese papercutting (jiǎnzhǐ  剪纸) and Chinese calligraphy (shūfǎ 书法). The highlight of the event was a tasting of yuánxiāo (元宵) or tāngyuán (汤圆), a traditional Chinese dessert made of sticky rice with a sweet paste filling of peanuts or sesame. It is typically eaten with family members as it represents the family coming together.

The event was a great success with many attendees leaving with traditional Chinese treats, their own jiǎnzhǐ or shūfǎ and new knowledge of the Chinese culture.

Article & Photo by Clair Yeo-Sugajski

Trojans Advance to CCCAA Women’s Basketball Playoffs | Watters Captures 100th Win

On Friday night, February 22, 2019, the Skyline College Women’s Basketball Team defeated the San Jose City College Jaguars by a score of 64-47. This victory was notable for several reasons. One, it was the 20th victory of the season by the team (20-8) making them only the second women’s basketball team in Skyline College history to amass 20 or more wins. The last team to accomplish that was the 2008-2009 team that finished at 24-7. Second, the win gave Skyline College a share of second place in the Coast Conference and qualified them for the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) Women’s Basketball playoffs.

Skyline College received the 11th seed and will be playing the Sierra College Wolverines in Rocklin on Friday, March 1, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults at $8 for students and can be purchased only at the Sierra College gym. For information about and directions to Sierra College, please view their athletics website.

With the victory on Friday, Skyline College Head Coach, Chris Watters, earned his hundredth career victory.  Coach Watters, who is an adjunct faculty member, has been at Skyline College for 12 years, seven years as the Head Coach, and has a career record of 100-91. This marks the fifth time in seven years that his team has qualified for the playoffs.

Article by Joseph Morello

SPARC Meeting Update

The Skyline College Strategic Planning and Allocation of Resources Committee (SPARC) met on Thursday, February 14, 2019.

Judy Hutchinson briefed on the District Committee on Budget and Finance (DCBF) monthly meeting held on January 22, 2019. Highlights include review of the Governor’s State Budget Proposal for 2019-2020 and State Apportionment Attendance Report (CCFS-320) for First Period (July – December 2018). Click here to see the Governor’s Budget proposal for details.

For fiscal year 2018-2019, the District is projecting annual Full Time Equivalent Student (FTES) enrollment at 15,188, compared to 15,722 FTES for fiscal year 2017-2018. The committee also received an update from Paul Cassidy, Manager of Finance and Operations, on the FTES and instructional costs. Of note, the FTES has dropped more than 15% over the last six years.

Eloisa Briones, Vice President of Administrative Services, gave an overview of District Innovation Funds program which began in fiscal year 2015-2016. The District, through the Chancellor’s Cabinet, has allocated funds for projects that align with their strategic planning goals as well as Skyline College’s. These funds are ongoing. SPARC will be involved with reviewing and prioritizing proposals submitted by Skyline College and will make a recommendation to the President, who will evaluate and develop the  recommendation to the Chancellor’s Cabinet.

SPARC will be conducting 10 CPRs this spring on March 28, 2019 and April 11, 2019. Karen Wong, Coordinator of Institutional Effectiveness and Zahra Mojtahedi, Planning and Research Analyst, continued training with the committee on the Comprehensive Program Review (CPR) process.

For further information and resources, please see the Program Review website

Next meeting is Thursday, February 28, 2019 from 2:10 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in Building 6, Room 6-203.

Article by Judy Hutchinson

The Learning Center Open House Welcomes Hundreds of Students, Staff and Faculty

TLC Open HouseOn Wednesday, February 20, 2019, the Skyline College Learning Center (TLC) welcomed hundreds of students for our first bi-annual TLC Open House! Students, staff and faculty were invited to learn more about Learning Center programs and services as well as meet staff, faculty and student representatives. Student groups and classes received personalized tours of the Learning Center offerings and were invited to have a pastry and coffee or tea on us! We were honored to host students from local Bay Area high schools for Skyline College’s Discover ASTEP Day as well as our district students from the Silicon Valley Intensive English Program. Thank you to the faculty members who brought their classes to take part in this special event!

If you missed the Open House, please stop by the Learning Center to learn more about the programs below:

Learning Center:

  • Tutoring (Writing/English/ESOL/Math/Science/Business/Social Sciences)
  • Supplemental Instruction Labs
  • Peer Mentoring (workshops and one-on-one support)
  • Student Success Lab
  • Group and quiet study areas
  • Computers and printing
  • ReUSE Hub (FREE school supplies!)

Meet & Greet / Tours:

  • BAM (Brothers Achieving Milestones)
  • WMLA (Women’s Mentoring and Leadership Academy)
  • Honors Transfer Program
  • Human Library and Poetry Corner
  • Learning Communities
  • Library and Reference / Research
  • TRiO Student Support Services
  • Zero Textbook Cost

This event was made possible with the financial support from the Honors Transfer Program, Learning Communities and the Academic Support & Learning Technologies Division! Thank you to the Skyline College Bookstore for the generous donation of coffee and hot water and the World Cup Coffee & Tea student staff for keeping the coffee flowing for our visitors!

To view all photos from the event, please visit:

Article by Chelssee De Barra and Marisa Thigpen | Photo by Marisa Thigpen

Staff and Faculty Show Some Love for Jamaica

cosmetology fundraising for valentines dayOn Valentine’s Day, February 14, 2019 cosmetology students dodged raindrops running from one office to another to deliver custom-made Valentine candy grams. At five dollars each, sending a Valentine was an easy way for Skyline College staff and faculty to express their appreciation for one another with a hand-delivered card and chocolate. Wet and tired at the end of the day but glowing with accomplishment, the students raised $560 towards their summer service learning trip to Jamaica.

A PIF-winning collaboration between cosmetology, esthetics and the office of workforce development, “Negril, Jamaica: A Service and Cross-Cultural Learning Experience” combines work experience, international travel and cultural fluency. Cosmetology students will learn techniques for natural haircare from Jamaican professionals while esthetics students study facial treatments made with local ingredients like coffee and tropical fruits. In return, Skyline College faculty Cassidy Ryan and Andrea Vizenor and classified staff member Lynsey Hemstreet will teach workshops on eyelash extensions, manicure techniques and excellence in customer service to students and industry professionals based in Negril, Jamaica.

As each student saves towards their $3,000 individual goal to cover trip expenses, scholarships and family contributions will only go so far. If you missed the opportunity to send a Valentine, you can still support the trip! The cosmetology department is hosting a VIP event on March 20, 2019 from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm. This event will sell out! A $50 ticket includes two salon or spa services, mocktails and appetizers, a raffle ticket to win a gift basket with products from Wella and Sebastian and a commemorative T-shirt.

If you miss the opportunity to get a ticket, you can make a direct donation at or by stopping by the reception desk in cosmetology to show your support with a cash donation of any size, big or small.

Article by Lynsey Hemstreet | Photo by Tammy Calderon

Promise Counselor Ivan Silva Honored by the Academic Senate of California

Promise Scholarship Counselor Ivan Silva was chosen as one of the winners of the Board of Governors Hayward Award.

This state-wide award in excellence in education honors four faculty members who demonstrated a commitment to the principles of the California Community Colleges. Ivan’s commitment to serving and empowering students from diverse backgrounds and his devotion to community college as an open-access education system was amply evidenced in his application and the support letters from his nominators.

Some of the evidence of educational leadership that earned Ivan the recognition include the group counseling curriculum for the Promise Scholars Program that focused on high-needs students he developed with his team of counselors in Spring 2018. Ivan’s contributions to the College Comprehensive Redesign was also a winning factor, which resulted in the development of a redesigned Counseling “Getting In” process for all new-incoming Skyline College students.

The Counseling Division showed strong support for the nomination of Ivan throughout the selection process. This comes as no surprise when his colleagues describe him  as a collaborator, a joy to work with as a colleague and the first listener to his team.

From Skyline College, Jude Navari from the Music Department was nominated by the local Academic Senate as the full-time nominee and Ivan Silva as the part-time nominee.

Article by Rika Yonemura-Fabian

The Learning Commons Open House on Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Learning CommonsOn Wednesday, February 20th, join the Skyline College Learning Commons for our Spring 2019 Open House from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Learn more about our programs and services, meet staff, faculty and student representatives. Get a tour of the below campus offerings and grab a pastry and coffee or tea on us!

Learning Center:

  • Tutoring (Writing/English/ESOL/Math/Science/Business/Social Sciences)
  • Supplemental Instruction (Visit our new spaces!)
  • Peer Mentoring (Workshops and one-on-one support)
  • ReUSE Hub (FREE school supplies!)
  • Student Success Lab
  • Group & Quiet Study Areas
  • Computers & Printing

Meet & Greet/Tours:

  • Brothers Achieving Milestones (BAM)
  • Women’s Mentoring & Leadership Academy (WMLA)
  • Honors Transfer Program
  • Human Library & Poetry Corner (Advanced sign-ups available for February 21th Human Library event)
  • Learning Communities (Cohort-based thematic courses)
  • Library & Reference / Research (Meet our Librarians!)
  • TRiO Student Support Services
  • Zero Textbook Cost (Open Educational Resources program)

If you plan to bring a class or group to this event, please email by Tuesday February 19, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. with an estimated number of students and time of arrival so that we can plan accordingly.

Article & Photo by Marisa Thigpen

Skyline College’s STEM Women Celebrate International Day of Women and Girls in Science!

Skyline College Women in STEM at Strava HQStudents from WISER! (Women In Science and Engineering Represent!) and the Engineering and Tech Scholars learning community celebrated International Day of Women and Girls in Science on February 11, 2019 by hosting a lunch and discussion on the importance of closing the gender gap within STEM fields by reaching out to younger women and increasing retention in science. Club members shared their personal and cultural experiences with STEM gender disparities while empowering each with the notion that resilience is power.

The women continued their festivities at Strava Headquarters on February 12, 2019 for a Girl Geek X Dinner which are hosted weekly at different tech companies in the Bay Area with the aim of women empowerment and career retention in the workforce. Students were funded to attend the dinner through Skyline College’s STEM Pathways Program, a grant-funded project supported by the U.S. Department of Education Developing Hispanic Serving Institution Program (DHSI Award No. P031S180169).

Leading women at Strava, a highly popular and international social fitness network application company, shared their thinking and expertise in areas of career development, meaningful data, iOS and server engineering, scaling to meet demands, branding, and company culture that encourages innovation. Students practiced their elevator speeches beforehand and anticipated the networking event as a first of many for our Skyline College women pursuing engineering and science. It was a highly engaging and inspirational event for our students!

If you are interested in events like this, please stop by our WISER! Club meetings. WISER! aims to empower Skyline College women in their STEM pathways for an improved gender balance within the classroom and workforce. We support each other as fellow peers while celebrating and recognizing our cultural diversity. The club meets every Monday, from 12:00 p.m. -1:00 p.m. in Building 7, Room 7-307. Guest speakers, workshops and off-campus excursions are facilitated based on monthly themes: Careers in February, Women’s History Month in March, Academics in April and Personal Growth in May.

For more information, contact Christal Nevarez, the club president at or their advisor, Maryam Khan at

Engineering & Tech Scholars (ETS), a learning community for students pursuing Engineering, Computer Science and Physics, is now receiving applications for its Fall 2019 cohort.

Apply here: For questions regarding ETS, contact Jenny Le at

Article by Jenny Le, Maryam Khan and Christal Nevarez

Wrestling and Women’s Basketball Selected by CCCAA as Scholar Teams for 2017-2018

Skyline College wrestling and women’s basketball teams were named Scholar Team recipients by the California Community College Athletic Association (CCCAA) for the 2017-2018 academic year. Only one team is selected for each sport sponsored by the CCCAA. This is a special award as it emphasizes academic achievement of all the members of a specific team.

The criteria for nomination are:

  1. Participation in an intercollegiate sport during the 2017-2018 academic year.
  2. 80% or more of team participants successfully completing 12 or more units during their season of sport.
  3. Achieving a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher for all units attempted by members of the team during their season of sport.
  4. Achieving better than average results in intercollegiate athletic competition.

Teams are nominated by each conference in every sport and compete against other teams and conferences in the state for this honor. Congratulations to the deserving students on their wonderful accomplishments both in the classroom and on the court and mat. Additionally, congratulations to their Head Coaches, Chris Watters (Women’s Basketball) and James Haddon (Wrestling) and their staff in supporting and working with the students. A final note of thanks to all the faculty and staff at Skyline College, with special recognition to Kate Browne, Danielle Powell, Kwame Thomas and Dr. Jennifer Taylor-Mendoza for their hard work in helping the Scholar Team recipients as well as writing letters of support for the nominations.

Article by Joe Morello

Summer 2019 Global Internships Applications due Monday

Applications for the Summer 2019 SMCCCD Global Internship Program and Global Internship Scholarship are due this Monday, February 11, 2019.

In support of Skyline College’s goals to internationalize the educational experience, the SMCCCD Study Abroad Office will offer students from Skyline College, Cañada College and College of San Mateo the opportunity to participate in two-month academic internships around the world in a variety of fields such as journalism, business and marketing, communication studies, computer science, criminal justice, social work and more. Last year, students interned in Chile, Germany, South Africa, the Czech Republic, Ireland, Hong Kong, and domestically in San Francisco and New York. This year, the program is also offering internships in Spain and France.

In addition to hands-on learning in supervised, academic internships, students enroll in a 3-unit Skyline College course—Global Identity and Professional Development—designed to provide them a structured opportunity to understand, reflect on and articulate their multi-layered experiences in their host country, as well as develop their professional portfolio.

Students are eligible to apply for the Global Internship Scholarship to help offset the cost of living and interning abroad. Priority is given to students who demonstrate financial need and clear academic, professional and personal goals for the program. This scholarship is made possible through the Skyline College President’s Innovation Fund and the California Community Colleges Strong Workforce Program.

The Global Internship Program is a part of SMCCCD Study Abroad, housed in the Global Learning Programs and Services Division at Skyline College. For more information about studying or interning abroad, faculty teach abroad opportunities, travel for lifelong learners, visiting international faculty presenters and student scholarship opportunities, please contact Zaid Ghori at (650) 738-7088 or or Stephanie Wells at (650) 738-7159 or You can also learn more by visiting the SMCCD Study Abroad Facebook page or Instagram page @smcccd_study_abroad.

Article by Stephanie Wells