Message from the President
The uncertainties of this new year and the intense work of the Strategic Transformation process have inspired me to reflect on the work we do at MCC: what we do, how we do it, and most importantly, why we do it.
What we do is straightforward. We promote access and success for ALL students. We are proud to be an open-access institution in a world that closes far too many doors. Success, as we all know, comes in many varieties. Some are easy to see, but much more often, success is subtle, cumulative and often hard to detect.
How we promote access and success is as varied as the students who come through our open doors. Getting the how right is important and depends on skilled and dedicated professionals with the space, the tools, and the support they need to do their best work. At MCC, people are our core and our strength. It is these tremendous education professionals who inspire students and transform lives.
At the end, why we do this work is much more important than the what and the how. Why build an open-access, high quality education system? Why work so hard to put people on the path to success? Because transforming lives is important. It’s important on the micro and macro levels, on personal and societal levels.
I once had a student who completed three of my classes. When I first met him, he was a tough young man who, like many of our students, had a rough start in life. Several months after he finished his final class with me, “Microeconomics,” I received an email from him. He told me he had just seen the movie “A Beautiful Mind” and connected the Noble Prize-winning theories of John Nash with the short section we had covered on game theory. I was amazed at the connections he was able to make and truly inspired by how far he had come.
At Middlesex Community College, we have the privilege and the responsibility of working to change the world one student at a time. We are striving to build a better world one life, one community, one nation at a time. Although we face many challenges in the year ahead, I am confident that by working together, we will continue to transform lives and build great communities.
January Opening Forum
At the upcoming Opening Forum, to be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 26, in the Bedford Campus Center’s Café East, I will be presenting on the results of the Strategic Transformation Planning Process. This event will also be streamed to the Lowell Campus Lower Café. Questions may be submitted in advance to email@example.com.
Light refreshments will be available.
- Jan. 23 – Spring Semester begins
- Jan. 26 – January Open Forum, 2-4 p.m., Bedford Campus Center’s Cafe East
- Jan. 26 – Board of Trustees Meeting, 7:30 a.m., Trustees’ House, Galvani Room, Bedford
- Feb. 23 –Board of Trustees Meeting, 7:30 a.m., Trustees’ House, Galvani Room, Bedford
- March 20-24 – Spring Break
- March 30, April 3, 4 & 5 – Advisory Board Dinners, Bedford Campus Center
- April 27 –Board of Trustees Meeting, 7:30 a.m., Trustees’ House, Galvani Room, Bedford
In The News
- MCC Battles National Trend of Declining Enrollment (January 12, 2017)
- Middlesex Adds Two Community College Food Pantries (December 15, 2016)
- Skilled Laborers are in Demand (December 26, 2016)
- MCC President James Mabry on Bedford Common Show – Bedford TV (Published January 11, 2017)
- MCC Appoints New Human Resources Director (January 12, 2017)
- Middlesex Ranked Among Best Community Colleges in Massachusetts (January 5, 2017)
Title III Grant: MCC 360
Middlesex’s new Title III grant – MCC 360: Success from the Start– was introduced to faculty and staff at the last FSA meeting of 2016 on Tuesday, December 6th.
MCC 360: Success from the Start seeks to increase student success by acquiring technology that enhances student self-service in enrollment, and degree-completion planning. It will also enable the college to invest in predictive analytics tools allowing for more rigorous assessment of student progress, leading to more effective student interventions and institutional planning.
Dr. Mabry has overall responsibility for the leadership of this project. MCC 360 has both a nine member executive steering committee and a college-wide, 27-member advisory committee composed of faculty and staff. Scott O’Neil will serve as the Title III Coordinator and Audrey Nahabedian is the Activity Coordinator for Enrollment Services. John Giblin is the IT Analytics Activity Coordinator, and Peter Shea is the Activity Coordinator for Academic Instruction & Professional Development.
Before Winter Break, two days were set aside for presentations from a variety of technology vendors interested in working with the college. Presentations were held on both the Lowell and Bedford campuses. They were open to members of the MCC community and were well attended.
For the spring, the MCC 360 project team, executive steering committee. and the advisory committee will continue to assess possible technology solutions to meet our grant goals.
Middlesex Community College is one of approximately 100 institutions nationwide designated as an Asian-American, Native American, Pacific Islander Serving Institution (AANAPISI) by the U.S. Department of Education based on the number of Asian-American students enrolled at the college. During Fall 2016, Middlesex received a five-year, $1.73 million grant to deliver a range of support services and co-curricular activities to improve the college experience of Asian-American students, as well as their completion and transfer outcomes.
The Program for Asian-American Student Advancement (PAASA) will be administered by Pamela Flaherty, Senior Student Affairs Officer/Dean of Students. Matthew Olson, Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences, along with Patricia Demaras, Assistant Dean of International and Multicultural Affairs, will serve as co-chairs. The college will be establishing an Asian-American Connections Center on the Lowell campus in the Cowan Building, ground floor, Room G00. The grant has developed a steering committee, a working group, and three design teams: ELL Design Team, Asian Center Design Team, and Planning and Financial Aid Design Team.
Please look for our Open House in February!
News from the Divisions
Academic, Career & Transfer Department
- On December 2nd, the session of the New Faculty Institute was devoted to Academic Advising. A panel of faculty and professional advising staff, facilitated by Pat Bruno, presented on best practices for working with advisees. Faculty have been shadowing advisors in the advising offices this semester, as well. Special thanks to Karen Townsend, Dora Ottariano, Denise Marchionda and Kirsten Morrow for participating on this panel. The second part of this session was devoted to a review of Degree Works and how to use this tool with advisees.
- We are excited to announce that these same faculty from the New Faculty Institute will participate spring semester in the Advising Institute that will provide in-depth training for faculty advisors on topics such a career advising, transfer advising, financial aid, academic progress, registration processes, advising strategies, tools and resources. The Advising Institute will begin on Friday, February 3rd. Faculty will also have opportunities to shadow other faculty advisors during spring semester.
- The advising area has begun orientations for new students entering MCC spring semester. Advisors are using the Pathways Maps to guide students to explore areas of interest when they present as undecided about a major or career. Additionally, students are guided to use the Academic Maps to understand and plan for their coursework.
- Our academic advisors have been busy with classroom visits this fall. Academic advisors visited more than 20 classrooms through the fall semester and presented on topics such as Degree Works, Academic Maps, and Registration. In some cases, students were actually able to register for spring courses right in the classroom. If you are interested in having an advisor visit your class spring semester, please contact Director of Advising Bryan Wint.
- Congratulations to Academic Advisor Maria Gonzalez who has been selected to be part of the China Fellowship this June and will travel to China for two weeks with a group of MCC students. This is not Maria’s first visit to China, so we are sure she will contribute quite a bit to the experience for our students.
- Internships: Approximately 20 students participated in two Pre-Internship Preparation Workshops in November. The workshops were designed with Paralegal and Business Career students in mind, since those students are required to do an internship for course credit. However, it was open to all students interested in the internship process. A little less than half of the students who attended the session are enrolled in an internship class next semester. The other half are planning on doing an internship at some point during their program at MCC and wanted to understand the internship process. Their majors ranged from Engineering, Computer Science, Cyber Security, Life Sciences and Global Studies.
- The pre-internship workshop included a large-group overview of Optimal Resume (resume template and job board), and one-on-one assistance by two Cummings Grant Achievement Liaisons (Karonika & Sarah), Coordinator of Career Services Karen James, and Internship Coordinator Melissa Welch. Additionally, Kimberley Morrissey, Chair of the Hospitality and Culinary Program, and Halye Sugarman, Chair of the Paralegal Program, attended to assist students in their respective programs with the internship search. Students received personalized attention based on their own needs as a part of the group experience. Additionally, interview-tip sheets were given to every participant. The workshop will run again during spring semester as we encourage students to apply for summer internship opportunities.
- The NEW Internship Website page is live and can be found on the Career Services website. There is a tab for students, faculty and employers, and there will be more interactive add-ons in the near future: https://www.middlesex.mass.edu/careerservices/internships/
- Career Services: Karen James, our Coordinator of Career Planning and Placement, has had a busy fall semester. Career Services visited close to 30 classrooms this fall and presented on topics such as LinkedIn, career exploration planning, resume and job search techniques – which includes our Optimal Resume Job Board, Focus2 and Career Trends in the Workforce. She also collaborated with our Veterans Affairs staff to host monthly offerings for resume and job assistance. If you are interested in workshops for your class next semester, please contact Karen James.
- Transfer Services: Jane Fain, our Transfer Counselor, has been active in attending meetings at the state level to continue the work on Transfer Pathways and other transfer initiatives. Our efforts to identify students eligible for the new Commonwealth Commitment program continue with various outreach efforts. We will soon be planning for our annual State Transfer Fair for spring semester, when we invite all of our four-year state colleges and universities to come on campus to discuss transfer options for our students.
- This fall, we collaborated with UMass Lowell in launching the Reserved Placement Program. This program was designed for a cohort of students accepted to UMass Lowell in the fall semester but were unable to begin there due to full enrollment capacity for the entering class. The program was designed to have these students, about 42 of them, start their education at MCC in the fall and then be readily able to transfer to UMass Lowell in the spring. Of this cohort, about half have now chosen to stay at MCC longer than one semester.
Latino Connections, a comprehensive drop-out prevention program that serves juniors and seniors at Lowell High School via staff/administrator referrals, was recently awarded a grant of $21,520 by the Bilezikian Family Foundation. Latino Connections is staffed by a bilingual/bicultural case manager who works with students, high school staff, and parents to ensure that participants are meeting graduation requirements; participating in extra support activities; completing college applications; and applying for scholarships and FAFSA; as well as coordinating internships, workshops, and job-shadow opportunities.
The Out of School Youth Development Center, located in the Cowan Center, was awarded $117,264 from the Greater Lowell Workforce Development Board to collaborate with the Career Center of Lowell to provide comprehensive support/resources as youth and young adults identify their career path, HiSET instruction and completion, assistance with college enrollment, short-term training opportunities, and attainment of permanent employment. In addition, the Saab Family Foundation awarded the OSY Development Center a $15,000 grant to support students with HiSET testing, college books and materials, and short-term training programs.
Middlesex Community College Precollegiate TRiO Programs and Gear UP Mass
The Precollegiate TRiO Talent Search and Upward Bound Program, and the Gear Up Program serve more than 1,400 students in three Lowell Public schools, middle schools and Lowell High School. The programs’ major objective is to work with low-income, first-generation-to-college students go on to post-secondary institutions. The programs offer an array of services, such as academic instruction, tutoring, college field trips, mentoring, leadership opportunities, and summer programming.
Currently, five of the six LHS seniors highlighted in the Lowell Sun recently, received large scholarships to select colleges are MCC TRIO and Gear UP students: Posse scholarship winner Sheila Mwangi (Bucknell University), Charity Midenyo (who has been admitted early-action to MIT), Posse winners Cole Conlon (Centre College) and Yaa Konama Pokuaa (Hamilton College), and QuestBridge Scholarship winner George Kubai (Brown University).
The Posse program identifies students who might otherwise be overlooked at select universities and provides life-altering opportunities to extraordinary students who demonstrated academic and leadership potential. Like the Posse Foundation, QuestBridge is an organization that strives to connect the brightest low-income students to some of the nation’s top schools. Our TRiO and Gear UP advisors prepare our students throughout the year and nominate the students who exhibit the greatest potential.
TRiO Talent Search received a five-year, $1.7 million continuation grant from 2016-2021. TRiO Upward Bound’s Request for Proposal (RFP) was submitted to the Department of Education in December, and our Gear UP grant has been awarded through 2018.
In collaboration with Lowell High School’s Career and College Center, MCC TRiO and Gear UP hosted a Massachusetts College Application Week with nearly 150 seniors participating. Massachusetts College Application Celebration! (MCAC) encourages students to take a significant step toward college by providing assistance and building excitement for the college-application process. Sponsored by Gear UP Massachusetts (gearup.mass.edu), administered through the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, the goal is to give every graduating senior the opportunity to complete at least one application by the conclusion of the three-day event. MCC’s Admission Office participated in the event, where more than 88 percent of the students who applied to community colleges applied to MCC.
The Gear UP program at Lowell’s Pyne Arts School is currently participating in Girls Who Code, a national organization in 42 states whose mission is to address the gender gap in technology. Approximately 10 8th grade students at the Pyne meet every Monday after school to explore computer coding in a fun and hands-on environment.
- Ellen Royalty, Coordinator of the Bedford library, presented at the fall professional development for access-services librarians of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) New England to discuss the rationale, process, and outcome of purchasing textbooks for reserve and the Kanopy streaming video service.
- Carrie Salazar, Information Literacy and Assessment Librarian, was invited to participate on a panel discussion at the fall conference of the New England Library Instruction Group on the theme of Advancing Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity.
- Donna Maturi, Coordinator of the Lowell library, offered a presentation to faculty at three events in support of the Open Educational Resources (OER) work currently underway as part of the Massachusetts Community Colleges’ MASS GO Open Statewide Initiative. Her presentation, “Open Licensing: What You Need to Know” was offered at training events held at NECC and MassBay Community College.
- Ellen Royalty and Carrie Salazar presented their poster on the effectiveness of the flipped classroom methodology at the recent New England Assessment in Action Symposium, a regional program sponsored by the American Library Association, held at Assumption College in Worcester.
The Massachusetts Go Open project is a statewide initiative which supports the use and development of open educational resources (OER), which can save students money on the cost of textbooks.
During the fall semester, Go Open put out two calls for proposals directed toward faculty who were teaching courses as part of STEM Guided Pathways. The intent was to promote the adoption and/or creation of OER in courses required for these pathways.
Seventeen MCC faculty members submitted proposals – all of which received approval. The projected combined savings for students is approximately $139,517.50
This spring, Go Open will be posting a third call for proposals. In addition, the MCC Office of Professional Development will be requesting mini-grant proposals from faculty who wish to adopt or create OER materials, but who are not teaching STEM Guided Pathway courses. Stay tuned!
Business, Education and Public Service
CRIMINAL JUSTICE DEPARTMENT
Every November the Criminal Justice Program must submit a review/report to the BHE in order to maintain its status as an accredited CJ program under the Police Career Incentive Program/Quinn Bill. This review/report was completed by CJ Department Chairwoman Lynda Pintrich, with input from her faculty and with the support of the MCC Institutional Research Department.
CULINARY ARTS AND HOSPITALITY DEPARTMENT
The Middlesex Culinary Arts Program was recently named the Fourth Best Culinary Arts Degree in Massachusetts by Best Choice Schools Website. According to its review, “Factors taken into account to determine rank included a varied and hands-on training curriculum, professional development opportunities, and positive industry reputation.” Best Choice also noted that “Middlesex recognizes that the culinary industry is fast-paced and students are taught to adjust to rapid changes and a high pressure environment to deliver a quality product.” According to Program Coordinator Kim Morrissey, one of the program’s unique features is its dynamic internship course, which includes opportunities to work with a variety of hospitality and culinary industry leaders in internships tailored to each student’s career and educational goals.
- ECE Accreditation: National Association for the Education of the Young Child (NAEYC) accreditation was recently re-awarded to the Early Childhood Education Transfer and Career programs. Middlesex is one of only three Massachusetts community colleges that have two programs accredited.
- Bedford Winter Walkabout: Fifteen Early Childhood majors volunteered for Bedford’s recent Winter Walkabout. As part of the early-December event, a tree-lighting ceremony followed Santa’s arrival on a fire truck. The students face-painted numerous young children while their parents shopped. This is the first time MCC has participated in the event.
- Education Program Bridges to College: The Education Department has recently received a Bridges to College Grant. This grant focuses on helping students get their National CDA (Child Development Associate) Credential. Students enrolled in three CDA Courses: “Child Growth and Development,” “Health, Safety and Nutrition in ECE,” and “Introduction to Early Childhood Education.” Of the 47 students who completed all three college courses, two were able to renew their CDA credential, and 45 passed and earned their initial CDA credential. MCC had a 100 percent pass rate on the national CDA Exam. The CDA is based on three different age groups of children- Preschool, Infant and Toddler, or Family Child Care. The CDA process requires 120 training hours, constructing a portfolio that includes writing six CDA Competencies and collecting Resource Items. Students also take a written CDA Exam (administered by an outside testing agency) and have a three-hour observation by a CDA Professional Development Specialist. The grant was administered and taught by Maureen Goulet, an adjunct faculty member, and Jessica Galindo provided portfolio and writing support, as well as translating for some of the bilingual students. The Bridges to College Grant also included training 10 family childcare providers in a one-credit “Family Child Care Business Plan” course, which emphasizes that a family childcare home is a business. Providers wrote about internal and external marketing, fiscal management and taxes, to name a few topics. The culmination of the class was to write a comprehensive business plan. Students who completed the Bridges to College Grant were encouraged to sign up for the Region Three Professional Development Grant Courses. Of the 45 students who passed the CDA, 33 are signed up to take additional ECE classes at MCC.
Fashion students made cowls to be donated to Catie’s Closet, a nonprofit organization with a mission to improve school attendance by providing an in-school resource of clothing and basic necessities to students living in poverty in MA and NH.
Fashion Club members joined Professor Ashli Ree’s “Buying” class to view more than 300 pairs of shoes. There were historical shoes, as well as modern day designer shoes. The learning activity was designed for students to act like buyers, including setting the retail price.
Fashion students learned how to use a leather-lace cutter and created leather braids that can be used for various accessories. There was also a great discussion on sustainable fashion.
HUMAN SERVICES DEPARTMENT
Two sections of “Introduction to Human Services” had the opportunity to bring in guest speakers. Paulo Barrio had two professionals from the field of human services speak to his Bedford class. Bronson de Stadler, LICSW, is in private practice and discussed what clients present with and the work he does with them. Jennifer Negron, BA, is a Youth & Family Support Worker and she discussed how she got into the field and the range of service providers she works with.
Julie Mirras had two MCC Human Services alumni speak to her Lowell class. Theresa Musgrave graduated from MCC in 2014 and highlighted the opportunities she took advantage of at MCC. Courtney Riel also graduated in 2014 and provided tips for students looking to transfer into a bachelor’s degree program. Both alums currently attend Salem State University and will be earning their BA in Social Work at the end of the coming semester.
The Human Services Department will look to continue to engage our alumni and professionals working in the field to allow our students the opportunity to clarify their professional goals and connect with community members involved in this broad field.
International Fellowship Students Present at December Trustees Meeting
Three students representing the International Education Fellowships program presented at the December MCC Trustees meeting at the Nesmith House. Antonio Monteiro (India), Valeria Fasolo (China), and James Carroll (Belize) highlighted memorable moments, and also shared what the study abroad opportunities have meant to them personally, academically, and professionally.
International Fellowship Selection
Students selected for the International Education Fellowship to India are Richard Shaw and Fiabla Zakarian, both Business majors.
Richard is president of the Business and Economics Club, and led the Fed Challenge team. He will led the DECA team this spring. Fiaba was MCC an Entrepreneurship Fair winner, creating an augmented reality app that provides children with a working Spanish vocabulary of 500 words by age 6. Before coming to MCC, she was a member of the Costa Rica National Gymnastics Team.
Fellowship interviews for the UK-Ireland and China trips were held in December. For complete information, visit he Global Education site: https://www.middlesex.mass.edu/globaleducation/fellowships.aspx
Students Studying Abroad Fall and Spring Semesters
MCC has a robust relationship with Bath Spa University (BSU) and University of West London UWL). Jason Mandell, a Culinary student, finished his fall semester abroad at UWL. Sydney Pare will be studying music at UWL in the spring.
Caitlin Sheridan, a History, Politics & Global Studies major and a participant in the England study aboard in June, is finishing a fall semester aboard at BSU. She plans to continue her study abroad in the spring as well. Joining her at BSU in the spring is Ilse Bellido-Richards, also a History, Politics & Global Studies major.
MCC also is a member of the CIEE Consortium, which provides student and faculty scholarships for study abroad and seminars. MCC student Alicia Collura finished her fall semester study abroad in Rome. She received a $5,000 scholarship and is taking 18 credits. MCC faculty member Ashli Ree, Coordinator of the Fashion Program, received support from the CIEE faculty scholarship and Global Education to attend the in-country Seminar Intercultural Learning in the Multilingual Context of Morocco. This seminar will provide Ashli with cultural context as she prepares modules for Partners to the Americas grant and the “Morocco Experience” course.
Collaborations with English, Honors and Scholars at Risk
Global Education provides funding for Master Classes and guest lectures across the college. Harvard Writer at Risk Shahriar Mandanipour, an Iranian author of many books, including “Censoring an Iranian Love Story,” provided a Master Class to Creative Writing students.
Future collaborations include former Scholar at Risk and current MCC Khmer language instructor Tararith Kho providing the keynote for MCC’s student literary conference. Current Scholar at Risk Jorge Olivera Castillo will present and hold a Master Class on poetry at MCC’s April 22nd poetry festival.
Plans are in the works for Sreang Heng, professor and political activist, to come to MCC for a presentation open to the college and community. Sreang, whom the Fulbright-Hays group met while in Cambodia, had to flee the country days later and is now a Scholar at Risk at Yale.
Asian Studies Development Program (ASDP) National Conference
The 23rd Asian Studies Development Program (ASDP) National Conference will be held in Portland, Ore., March 2-4, and two Fulbright-Hays faculty members, Kerrianne Gamache and Lara Kadinova will present their work at the conference. Dona Cady, President of the ASDP Alumni Association and Director of the Fulbright-Hays grant, will also present “The Hero in Translation: How the Concepts of Ren and Wu-wei Influence Heroic Science-Fiction and Fantasy Literature.”
Global Education is in the process of creating a study abroad platform using Terra Dotta software which will assist in streamlining online process-management for application, on-boarding, risk-management, and post travel. The site will go live in February.
Humanities and Social Sciences
There were three recent performances sponsored by the Music Department:
- Nov. 22: Music faculty members Orlando Cela, flute, and Carmen Rodriguez-Peralta, piano, joined by cellists Renee Delgado and Mauricio Rey Gallego, gave an outreach program for 90 Lowell Middlesex Academy Charter School students in the Assembly Room in Lowell. The Music Outreach Program has been offering events for Lowell High School and the Charter School students for the past 10 years.
- Dec. 2: Orlando Cela gave a recital in the Bedford Concert Hall as part of A World of Music Concert Series, where he was joined by Carmen Rodriguez-Peralta, piano; Wei Zhao, flute and Aron Zelkowicz, cello.
- Dec. 12: The concert series concluded on December 12 with a student recital featuring MCC student singers, pianists, guitarists, the MCC Percussion Ensemble and compositions by music technology students.
Throughout the fall semester, Cathy Pride, Psychology Professor, served as a faculty fellow for the AAC&U Faculty Collaboratives and the AAC&U STIRS Project. She also presented at a number of conferences:
- Massachusetts LEAP States Team member and presenter, AAC&U LEAP States Summit, Milwaukee, WI, Sept. 13 -15; co-presentator: “Guided Learning Pathways through General Education and Transfer.”
- 2-day workshop co-facilitator, AAC&U STIRS Initiative Workshops on Vertically Integrated Curricular Pathways, Penfield College/Mercer University, Atlanta, GA, Sept. 29 & 30
- Co-Presenter, National Academy of Sciences Board on Higher Education meeting, Cambridge, MA, Oct. 14: “Models, Practices, Opportunities, and Challenges for Mutual Integration of the Arts, Humanities and Science.”
Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
Information Technology Cybersecurity Lab Formally Opened
The Information Technology Cybersecurity Lab, located on the fourth floor of the Pollard Building, was formally opened on December 5. A special thanks to the Facilities staff (Brian Butler, Steve Hentz, Gary Sirois, Thomas Lyons, and John LeMay) who renovated the space, the IT staff who ordered and installed equipment (Al Keniston, Mike Giles, Kevin Belfiore, Kevin Doherty, and Pramod Bhardwaj) and IT faculty (Moe Moghimi, Ryan Fried and Syeda Ferdous Begum) who worked with Joe Patuto, Chief Technology Officer, Dean of STEM Kate Sweeney and Assistant Dean of STEM Donald Brady to design and implement the lab. President James Mabry was joined by Congresswoman Niki Tsongas, State Senator Eileen Donoghue, and State Representative David Nangle for the ribbon cutting to recognize the opening of the lab, which includes two classrooms. The Cybersecurity Lab was funded, in part, with support from a $20 million grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration to the Massachusetts community colleges (DOL-GPSTEM) and a $117,086 grant from the Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant program.
Syeda Ferdous Begum Conducts Research on Simulation Technology
Associate Professor of Information Technology Syeda Ferdous Begum, a member of the DOL-GPSTEM Computer Information System/Information Technology Academic Program Team, completed research during the fall semester on simulation technology that can be used to support students learning Python. She plans to integrate this technology into her “Scripting for Security” course next semester. Students will have access to interactive comprehensive technology and will not have to purchase a textbook.
Barnabe Romeo , an alumnus of the Biotechnology program, has coauthored a paper published by Oxford University Press: “Rapid decay of engulfed extracellular miRNA by XRN1 exonuclease promotes transient epithelial-mesenchymal transition.” He came to Middlesex through articulation with Minuteman High School. Upon graduating he returned to France, where he enrolled at the Universite de Nice, for his bachelor’s degree.
In early December, Billerica Memorial High School’s “Basic Anatomy and Physiology” class visited our A&P labs. Chris Burn and Cullen Hagan from the BMHS guidance department brought 12 students to Middlesex. They started the day with a campus tour given by Camille Brown. Stacey Hubbard worked with the students on an EKG and blood pressure lab. The students were a little quiet at first but once they go to the actual EKG portion they opened right up and had a great experience. They concluded their visit with lunch at the cafeteria and Stacey received correspondence from the faculty member that students thoroughly enjoyed their experience here at Middlesex.
New Biology Faculty Member
Kim Gonzalez is joining us this spring as a new full-time science faculty. She will be teaching “General Biology 1” and “General Biology 2.” She brings to MCC 12 years of teaching experience from Lowell High School where she taught college and honors biology, honors microbiology, and dual enrollment “General Biology 1.” She has served as adjunct faculty at Middlesex for five years. Prior to becoming a teacher, she worked as a clinical microbiologist at Tufts Medical Center and holds a B.S. in biology, and an M.Ed. in education, both from UMass Lowell. She will be completing an M.S. in biology from the University of Nebraska Kearney this spring. Her field of interest is microbiology and student-led inquiry, and as such, has mentored approximately 20 high school students in conducting microbiology experiments of their choosing. Their work has been published in the Journal of Emerging Investigators. She has also co-authored a biology textbook, with Dr. Thomas B. Shea from UMass Lowell, called “Life on this Rock,” which is published by Trunity eBook learning platform.
- The Pathways Center continues to be an active support area for students. In November and December, the center experienced nearly 1,000 student visits. Nine students visited IRobot with Biotechnology faculty member Tricia Richard in December
- The center also provided employer recruitment sessions with Proctor and Gamble, CVS, UPS and Securitas, that were attended by 68 students. Career workshops were offered for 41 students in FYE Biotech and Phlebotomy classes.
- The center offered multiple programs, including a “C++ for Java Programmers” workshop which ran through Winter Session.
- Audrey Frater and Joyce Wang presented at the recent 2017 Massachustts AACU PKAL Network Winter Meeting. The presentation on “Bridging Support for STEM Transfer Students” was a collaborative presentation with the Massachusetts DHE, Middlesex, UML & UMA.
Dean of Students
Pam Flaherty, Dean of Students, Student Affairs and Student Support Services, is delighted to announce that Karen Dillard has joined the college as Staff Assistant to the Dean of Students. Karen comes to us with many years with the Commonwealth working in Administration and Finance, as well as extensive experience working in K-12 school settings in California. She will be located in the Dean of Students area on the 2nd floor of the Enrollment Center in Bedford, and will be traveling back and forth to Lowell as needed. She can be reached at 781-280-3525.
Center for Leadership & Engagement
Food insecurity is a consistent problem across the United States. MCC community members are not immune to the effects of a difficult economy or personal hardship. Our students and staff were inspired several years ago to explore the feasibility of opening a food pantry on campus. The Center for Leadership & Engagement is pleased to announce the launch of two MCC Food Pantries with pilot hours of Tuesday (Lowell) and Wednesdays (Bedford) from noon to 4 p.m. during the fall and spring semesters. The food pantries opened in December with a ribbon-cutting event signifying the beginning of this critical support. The food pantries will reopen January 24th and the non-perishable food will be offered to any Middlesex member in a discrete, confidential and hassle-free manner. Donations will always be appreciated (thank you for over 500 pounds of food donated so far!).
Office of International, Multicultural and Veterans Affairs
- As new LGBTQ Resource Center Coordinator Ashley Trebisacci develops and implements programs and services to meet the needs of the LGBTQ communities. Her efforts will directly contribute to the college’s overall goal that all students feel welcome and part of our campus community. Resources for students to explore LBGTQ history, identity and advocacy can be found on MCC’s Virtual LGBTQ Center. Information is continuously updated on the website which is located under the “Advocacy” tab on the Dean of Students webpage. For additional information please connect with Ashley in the Bedford Multicultural Center (room 204, Campus Center) or call her at 781-280-3674.
- As part of the Cummings Foundation Grant, the Diversity Enrichment Program is expanding its offerings this semester. In addition to providing mentoring and peer support, the program will add workshops for career development, including enhancing interviewing and networking skills, as well as resume writing. The program is also expanding its work into the local community and will offer career readiness workshops to local high school students.
- The Diversity Enrichment Program also welcomes two new hires this semester. MCC student Valeria Fasolo will join Karonika Brown and Sarah Oliveira as part of the center’s student team of Achievement Liaisons. Their work includes connecting with students to assist them in recognizing how their college experiences enhance their professional skills and increases their marketability in the job force.
- Additionally, Micaela Kimball, the program’s new Diversity Enrichment Coordinator, will be responsible for supervising the student Achievement Liaisons, developing enrichment programs, providing professional development, and tracking program effectiveness. In addition to her work at MCC, Micaela is also a Boston-based independent arts and culture journalist.
- The Diversity Enrichment Program is located in the Multicultural Center, second floor in the Bedford Campus Center. The staff of the Diversity Enrichment Program is looking forward to continually expanding its support network at MCC as well as in the local community.
TRIO Program for Student Achievement is pleased to announce that we have hired Justyn Thoren as our new Learning Specialist. Justyn comes to us with several years of experience in the special education field, as well as working as an adjunct faculty member at Rivier College, teaching classes for students going into the field. Justyn will be located primarily on the Bedford campus on the second floor of the Enrollment Center, Room 219. She will be working with Trio students offering tutoring in math and English, as well as doing some advising and helping out with workshops. If you are interested in having a staff member come in to talk to your class about the TRIO programs, please contact Leslie Stafford at 978-656-3273.
The Admissions and Student Recruitment office would like to send out many THANKS for another successful Pathway to Success Day.! This would not have been possible without the assistance of the entire MCC community. The Pathway Day brought in 122 students from Greater Lowell Technical High School, Lawrence High School, and the Middlesex Charter Academy. By participating in a number of activities and observing various classes, these students are now able to envision their future academic success with MCC.
Alongside the Pathway Day, the Admissions and Student Recruitment Office participated in MCAC (Massachusetts College Application Celebration) sponsored through Gear UP, with Lowell High School and Lawrence High School. The goal of MCAC is to give every senior the opportunity to complete at least one college application by the conclusion of the week-long event. Jeff Tejada, Lauren Ellis, Kristie Faletra and Alison Handy collected more than 160 applications from seniors entering in the fall of 2017.
Camille Brown hosted an On the Spot Admissions event with Greater Lowell Technical High School where seniors were able to apply to the college and gain an admission decision the same day, including next steps on scheduling the college placement test and applying for financial aid. Fifty-nine applications were collected.
Admissions & Student Recruitment is always pleased to collaborate with faculty across campus. This month, Jeff Tejada and Jillian Freitas-Haley worked with Lynda Pyntrich and students from her “Law, Justice & Society” class to execute a Bedford campus tour and admissions presentation with students from the Lowell High School PALS program. Continuing on with the spirit of collaboration, Camille Brown worked with Stacy Hubbard to host students from Billerica High School to observe an “Anatomy & Physiology” lecture and concluded the visit with a Bedford campus tour. In addition, Jenna Engelsen provided a Lowell campus tour to 17 seventh-graders from the Bartlett Middle School. These young students also had the opportunity to visit Sally Quast’s chemistry class. This event was hosted by the new AmeriCorps VISTA, Carline-Kirskey Almond.
A few other notable events this month that show our commitment to expanding Adult Recruitment efforts:
- Lauren Ellis & Jeff Tejada held an Admissions Information Session for the evening students enrolled at the Abisi Adult Education program in Lowell. They plan to continue these sessions in the spring with the day students.
- Alison Handy attended an Educational Fair in Somerville sponsored by the The Consulate-General of Brazil in Boston, together with the Department for Consular Affairs and Brazilians Abroad of the Brazilian Foreign Ministry and the City of Somerville.
- Lauren Ellis conducted a group presentation with the women who are currently at the Massachusetts Correctional Institute, Pre-Release Center in Framingham. The presentation was a follow-up to multiple resource fairs and provided the women information on college and career as they prepare for their release.
Lastly, all of us in Admissions and Student Recruitment want to express our sincere gratitude for the support we receive from the college community.
Accuplacer Testing at Lowell High School
In late November and early December, the Testing department, in collaboration with the Enrollment Specialists and Admissions Counselors, tested 450 students at Lowell High School. All students were tested in reading, writing and mathematics, and they were advised in better understanding the meaning of their scores and placements.
Summer Scheduling – New Summer Term
Beginning with summer 2017, the college is adding a new, accelerated summer session. Summer QuickStart, modeled after our highly successful WinterSession, will be held from May 22 through June 9. Like WinterSession, a mix of online and on-campus courses will be available. Summer QuickStart will offer MCC and guest students the opportunity to complete a full course in only three weeks, leaving much of the summer for work, vacation, or continued studies in our traditional summer sessions.
Etrieve Content goes live. Softdocs was onsite during the week of December 5th assisting with Etrieve Content (document imaging) training for the Admissions, Enrollment Management, and Financial Aid departments. A total of 1,906 documents to 136 different document types have been scanned within its first week of being live. There are now 66 users with the ability to retrieve student documents remotely via the web. The days of storing and retrieving student documents in paper format are on a trajectory to end within the next couple of semesters.
The implementation of this application could not have been a success without the efforts of all who were involved. Enrollment Management would like to thank Scott O’Neil and Admissions, Enrollment Management, Financial Aid, and the Technology Center for their collaborative efforts and the adoption of this new technology. The Softdocs and MCC team will continue their work on developing and integrating e-forms and workflows. More to come in the next few months!
On December 2nd, Lisa Gibson and Jane Fain attended the Statewide Joint Transfer Meeting. The Cycle Two MassTransfer pathways were discussed. These programs include Business, Computer Science, Criminal Justice, Early Childhood Education, English, Liberal Arts, Mathematics, Sociology, STEM, and Communications. Information on these transfer pathways will be upcoming during spring semester.
Communications went out to remind that Fall 2016 Final Grades were to be entered through our online system by 10 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 3. MCC will continue collegewide prerequisite checking and graduation review, so it would be greatly appreciated if all grades could be entered at your earliest convenience. Please contact Registrar Daniel Moynihan (firstname.lastname@example.org), Assistant Registrar Lisa Gibson (email@example.com), or Katharina Lach (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you need assistance.
Introducing the Middlesex Fund
Donors now have a new option to add to the various ways they may support the MCC Foundation. The Middlesex Fund focuses on the future and supports scholarships, programs, and opportunities that further enhance the quality of education provided to MCC students. Check out www.middlesex.mass.edu/thefund .
Giving Tuesday Raises $10,000+ for MCC
Thank you to everyone who donated to the MCC Foundation Giving Tuesday campaign. On November 29th, the MCC Foundation participated in the global movement, Giving Tuesday, which was created to raise awareness for charitable causes and inspire individuals and corporations to give to organizations for which they are passionate. On this day, the Advancement Office tabled on each campus and sent out inspiring messages to donors on social media featuring MCC students sharing their educational goals and dreams. This effort raised $10,000 for the MCC Foundation. Thank you to all for your generosity!
2017 Annual Fund Campaign Continues
Thank you to the faculty and staff members (and several retired faculty/staff) who participated in the 2017 MCC Foundation Annual Fund video. See the video at www.middlesex.mass.edu/AF .
Want to make a gift to the MCC Foundation? Your gift to the MCC Foundation can:
– Provide Annual Fund grants for faculty/staff members
– Support Student Scholarships ranging from $500-$5000
– Fund exceptional academic and enrichment programs
Go to www.middlesex.mass.edu/donate today!
Corporate & Community Education and Training
Community Education and Training
All Call for MILES instructors: The MCC MILES members are a dedicated lively group who thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to learn from our esteemed faculty and staff here at Middlesex. Our MILES classes run for six weeks in the spring, Monday-Thursday, 2-4 pm, on the Bedford campus. If any MCC faculty or staff are interested in sharing their expertise for two hours, please contact Community Education and Training at email@example.com or 781-280-3663. Some ideas for subject/interest: poetry, history, current events, book clubs, art, political science, sociology, psychology, health and wellness, pop culture.
Community Education and Training courses are open for spring enrollment. Some of NEW courses this semester:
- Business Communications Certificate Program
- Social Media Employment Law
- Better Business Marketing Techniques
- Email Marketing for Small Business
- Lean/Six Sigma
- Small Business Finance
- Simplifying Taxes for the Self Employed
- Navigating the Tax Code for Non-Profit Organizations
- OSHA 10hr General Industry Training
- Intro to 3D Printers
- ServSafe Certification
- Be Your Guest!
- Customer Service Excellence
- Health Careers
- Developmental Disabilities, Mental Health Concerns
- Alzheimer’s Habilitation Training
- Medical Assistant Exam Prep
- Computer Apps
- MS Word for Business
- Personal Enrichment
- Floral Design
- Art Exploration Seminar
- Home Solar Electrical Energy Systems
- Home Electrical Repair
- Sustaining Your Garden During Climate Change
- Mastering Garden Skills
- History of Hand Tools
- Indoor Winter Organic Composting
For complete course listings visit www.middlesex.mass.edu/careertraining
Corporate Education and Training
- Offered CPR, First Aid, and Medical Administration Recertification classes for LifeLinks. Courses are conducted at MCC in order to provide employees exposure to taking classes in a college setting.
- Delivered Change Management training for Minuteman Senior Services at the Middlesex Meetinghouse.
- Delivered Effective Business Writing training for employees at Lantheus Medical Imaging, Inc. in Billerica.
Adult Learning Center/Links Programs
The MCC Adult Learning Center (ALC) and Links Program, both located on the Bedford campus, were recently selected by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education for a visit by its newly appointed Senior Associate Commissioner, Cliff Chuang. The Commissioner spent several hours with us on December 8th learning more about the educational services we provide to students in the region. He took time to tour parts of the campus, meet with ALC and Links staff, observed classes and had discussions with individual students. The ALC offers a free academic program designed to help students improve their academics to qualify for further education, job training or better employment. The Links Program is a free start-to-college program which emphasizes academic support, peer support through the cohort model, and smaller class sizes.
Veteran Opportunity Day at Career Source
Career Source in Cambridge hosted Veteran Opportunity Day on November 30th to provide veterans with information about educational and employment opportunities, manufacturing training, and other services to benefit veterans and their families.
About 20 veterans gathered for the occasion, which included a hiring event with Home Depot, the U.S.Postal Service, Greater Lynn Senior Services, Integral Resources, and United Parcel Service, which hired two veterans on the spot.
Representatives from several organizations presented information about the services they offer veterans. Guest speakers were George O’Connor, Assistant Commissioner for Regulatory & Veterans Affairs at the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, Elizabeth Hart, Executive Director for Tailored for Success, and Robin Dion, Manufacturing Consortium Manager at the Metro North Regional Employment Board.
Veterans Inc., New England Center & Home for Veterans, and the Volunteers of America were also on hand to chat with veterans about their services.
Marketing Communications Wins Six Digital Marketing Awards
Marketing Communications has earned four Gold and two Bronze awards in the fourth Annual Educational Digital Marketing Awards competition. Sponsored by Higher Education Marketing Report, the competition recognizes the best educational websites, digital content, electronic communications, mobile media, and social media.
This year, more than 1,000 entries were received from colleges, universities and secondary schools across the U.S. A national panel of industry specialists judged each piece for creativity, marketing execution, message impact, technology application, and innovation content.
Middlesex earned four Gold Awards in the categories of Admissions Website (Returning Adult Microsite); Social Media Content (MCC Facebook); Social Media Hub (Storify: MCC Commencement 2016); and Online Publication (Profiles magazine 2015-16). The college also earned two Bronze Awards in the categories of Digital Video (Commonwealth Honors Program); and Electronic Advertising (MyMCC ad in Spanish).
New MCC Cable TV Ad
Our spring-semester “Student Success” cable TV commercial has hit the airwaves. The 30-second ad is running on Comcast for four weeks in our service area: Woburn, Lowell, Lexington and Nashua zones. Check it out on MCC’s YouTube channel: https://youtu.be/FY7qgfqcsv0
MCC Folders Available
Need folders for an internal or external special event? Our newly redesigned #MyMCC folders are now available. To request folders, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with “folders request” in the subject line. In the body of the email tell us: the quantity you need; the purpose/event you need them for; date needed; and where to deliver them. We will do our very best to fulfill all requests.
Looking Back at 2016
This past year was a very good one for the college, as reflected in our Middlesex Moments 2016 video. If you missed it, watch it on the college YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B7HaVWznYuY
Please Return Old Pull-Banners
If you – or your department – have a retractable banner that is out of date or not used any longer, please return it to Marketing Communications. We constantly refresh pull-banners with updated college messaging, but we need the hardware/stand to make that happen. Please return old retractable banners via inter-office mail or drop them off: Marketing Communications, Cataldo Building (Room 108), Bedford campus.
Did you know?
New to the college? You can you still order MCC lapel pins from Marketing Communications – and we now have extra lapel-pin replacement backs, in case you lost yours. To request pins or replacement backs, please request using this form. In the body of the email tell us: the quantity you need; date needed; and where to deliver them.
Government and Community Relations
- Director of Public Safety Daniel Martin attended the monthly meeting of the NEMLEC STARS team. Dan has been serving on the STARS team representing MCC for seven years and is called in to help students, faculty and staff deal with the aftermath of an incident involving their school community. Over the years, Dan has been called to help with bomb threats, homicides, student-deaths, and enhanced lockdown situations. These monthly meetings allow the members of the STARS team to debrief on recent incidents and explore new ideas.
- Run, Hide, Fight Active Shooter Training was conducted for the RAMP-UP tutoring staff. This training focused on the geographic needs of the RAMP-UP team. Dan and his team also conducted a voluntary Active Shooter Training open to all on campus, including personnel from the Charter School.
- Dan Martin also attended the bi-monthly Violence Prevention Coalition meeting, working with Bedford police, Bedford Town Manager, personnel from Hanscom Airforce Base, and town clergy to formulate plans to reduce incidents of violence within the community.
- Holiday and winter safety tips were shared with the College community as part of an effort to promote awareness and safety for all students, faculty and staff.
- Director of Compliance/Title IX Coordinator Alisa Chapman has been working on the College’s response and compliance to the Dept. of Education/Office of Civil Rights voluntary compliance review. This has been an on-going process since the Spring of 2015 and has involved many areas of the College. The response and compliance plan is already underway and we will continue to work diligently to ensure that our programs are free from discrimination.
- The Title IX Coordinators from the Community College system met in January. These meetings occur quarterly and are used for training, best practices and table top exercises. Alisa was in attendance at the meeting on behalf of MCC and shared insight on working with pregnant students.
- The Public Records Law in Massachusetts has been amended and went into effect on January 1st. This has impact on all State agencies, including MCC. The team of Patrick Cook, Alisa Chapman and Abby Vergados worked to establish the following webpage: https://www.middlesex.mass.edu/disclosurestatements/publicrecord.aspx in compliance with the changes to the law. If you have any questions regarding the new law or receive a request, please direct those to MCC’s Records Access Officer, Patrick Cook at email@example.com.
- Lowell Campus Resource Officer Tom Hickey attended the 2017 Campus Safety Symposium to Address Substance Misuse on College Campuses hosted by Middlesex D.A. Marian Ryan. Officer Hickey learned valuable information that he was able to immediately put into practice during the course of duties his at MCC. The day following the training, while working the afternoon/evening shift, Officer Hickey was alerted to two suspicious males that had entered the Cowan Center. Once they had been located, Officer Hickey determined that the two males were in possession of illegal narcotics. During the investigation, one of the males was found to have some unidentified pills in his possession. The pills were identified as Gabapentin, a prescribed medication for restless leg syndrome, seizures and over-active nerves. As stated in the D.A.’s training, this medication is taken by heroin addicts to lessen the effects of heroin withdrawals (i.e. “shakes” and tremors). This invaluable training also provided excellent information regarding the new marijuana statutes and how they relate to college campuses.
- Bedford Campus Resource Officer Craig Naylor helped coordinate two, free on-campus Adult Heart-Saver classes, open to faculty and staff. Conducted by Bedford Police Sgt. Paul Saunders, the first of these classes took place on the Lowell campus on January 9th and focused on CPR, AED use and first aid. A dozen MCC employees took part and will receive a letter certifying they have successfully completed the training. The second class is scheduled to take place on the Bedford campus later this month.