NCC Instructor Trains English Teachers at Annual Conference

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NCC Instructor Renee Martinez

Nash Community College True Blue Core – Professional Learning Community Coordinator / English & Humanities Instructor, Renee Martinez, presented at the North Carolina English Teachers Annual Conference held in Raleigh October 9 – 11.

She shared various strategies to engage students leading to increased student participation and comprehension. “It was my goal for instructors to leave the session with practical tools and the knowledge to implement them immediately.”

Educators recognize that students have different learning styles. To help students achieve success in the classroom instructors can adapt a natural teaching style to reach more students. English and literature classes particularly lend themselves to a variety of delivery methods to help students learn more effectively. In her session, participants discussed the characteristics of multiple learning styles and the impact on students and instructors.

Nash Community College implemented enhanced and ongoing professional development regarding pedagogically sound practices two years ago. “As an instructor, I discovered that these engagement strategies helped not only make writing and literature more engaging for my students, but the quality of essays, test performance, and class discussions greatly improved.” Martinez taught conference attendees effective strategies that can be taken back into the classroom and implemented easily, with little preparation.

During her presentation she explained some of the most effective strategies used in her English Composition and Critical Thinking classes. These include the 10-2-2 lecture style, the 10 Commandments with Gallery Walks, and Socrative.com. 10-2-2 is a lecture strategy that reinforces the idea that instructors must pause so students have a chance to reflect and absorb what is being learned. The 10 Commandments activity helps students review and understand expectations. It can be applied to many instructional areas from classroom management to rules that must be followed for MLA formatting and documentation. Combined with the 10 Commandments strategy, Gallery Walks get students up and moving around the room in groups with clear guidelines and expectations set by the instructor. Socrative.com is a website that can be used in a variety of ways to engage student learning. For example, in Martinez’ classes, students are given permission to use their phones during class. “With the demand on instructors to retain students and ultimately prepare them for degree completion, we need to use innovative techniques that will engage all students to help them learn and be successful in the class,” she said.

“Today’s students are constantly bombarded with images and sounds causing them to feel overwhelmed in a traditional lecture-based classroom,” she explained. “As instructors, we are charged with engaging students in different ways in order to increase participation and comprehension.” The strategies Martinez outlined are included on her website: crmartinez.weebly.com. Martinez graduated with an Associate in Arts degree in English from Peace College and Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in English from East Carolina University.

Culinary Students Prepare, Serve Food at System Office Conference

10735817_10152727488828895_1336131526_nNash Community College Culinary students and instructors prepared and served food at the North Carolina Community College System Office Conference this week in Raleigh. Guests enjoyed Cuban sandwiches cooked to order with pickled carrot and radish salad, cucumber sushi rolls with soy caviar and wasabi cream served with Asian slaw and Caprese salad skewers with tomatoes from NCC’s garden. The colorful centerpiece was crafted by students with vegetables grown on the NCC campus.

Students Design Tournament T-Shirt

unnamedNash Community College Advertising and Graphic Design students designed the 25th Annual NCC Foundation Golf Classic t-shirt. The students are pictured from left: Will Lewis, NCC Foundation Executive Director Pat Daniels, Melissa Cooke, Xavier Moody, NCC President Dr. Bill Carver, Judie Taylor, NCC Advertising and Graphic Design Instructor Natasha Neal, Anna Inscoe, Desiree Dolbery, Rashaun Moore, Matt Unruh and Anna Bindrim. For the past three years, NCC Advertising and Graphic Design students have created the ‘mascot’ design for the Annual Student Scholarship Golf Classic t-shirt.

NCC and NRMPS to Host 6th Annual Showcase

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Vidant EastCare helicopter visits NCC’s Campus during the 5th Annual Career and Technical Showcase held in 2013

On October 21st from 6:00-7:30pm, Nash Community College (NCC) and Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools (NRMPS) will host sixth through twelfth grade students and their parents at the 6th Annual Career & Technical Education Open House in the NCC Business and Industry Center. The event is free and everyone is welcome.

During the showcase, attendees will explore classes that can be taken in Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools that align with classes and programs offered at Nash Community College. The event will give students and parents an opportunity to learn more about the college application process, financial aid, academic programs, career options and more. Demonstrations will take place inside and outside the auditorium including hazmat and canine demonstrations, fire extinguisher training, and a special visit from Vident’s EastCare helicopter, just to name a few.

“This event proves to be successful annually with over 900 students and parents coming through the doors in NCC’s Brown Auditorium. The event is the epitome of a successful relationship between educational institutions and the business community,” NCC Associate Dean for Student and Enrollment Services Wil van der Meulen said. Participating local businesses will be on hand to explain the importance of education as it applies to local employment. They will also showcase a wide array of careers available in the Nash County area.

Nearly 100 tables and demonstrations representing Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools’ classes, Nash Community College programs of study and other educational and business partners will give attendees a taste of the offerings through each entity. In addition, representatives from local businesses and industries will be there to share more about their organizations and the importance of a skilled and educated workforce. “The relationship between Nash-Rocky Mount Schools and NCC is a perfect collaboration of deliberate actions to prepare students and adults to become career and college ready. The Showcase is an example of this great relationship that exists,” N-RMPS Director of Career & Technical Education Pam Lewis said.

At 5:30pm, a “State of our Schools” address will be given by NRMPS Superintendent Dr. Anthony Jackson in Building B, Room 2101.

For more information, contact Nash Community College Associate Dean of Student and Enrollment Services Wil van der Meulen at 252-451-8392. Last year’s event photos, video and additional information are available at www.nashcc.edu/cteshowcase.

NCC Names 2014 Student Ambassadors

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Nash Community College has named four Student Ambassadors to represent the college throughout the 2014-2015 academic year. The Nash Community College Foundation sponsors the Student Ambassador program for selected individuals who demonstrate leadership, scholarship, and strong written and oral communication skills. This year’s student ambassadors are (seated, from left): Shiloh Burch and Kabryn Mattison, (standing, from left): Omar Allen and Keith Battle.
Shiloh Burch, of Rocky Mount, graduated from Roanoke Rapids High School. She is enrolled in the NCC Healthcare Business Informatics program and serves as a Lab Assistant and Tutor for the English Department. Kabryn Mattison, of Rocky Mount, is an Associate in Science, College Transfer student. A graduate of Tarboro High School, she enjoys working in the NCC Biodiversity Center processing DNA, and honing her real world lab skills. Omar Allen, of Macclesfield, is a Computer Engineering Technology student and works in the college Institutional Technology Department assisting with computer repair and network restoration. He is a Beddingfield High School graduate. Keith Battle, of Rocky Mount, is a Northern Nash High School graduate pursuing a degree in Computer Engineering Technology. He plans to graduate in December.
NCC Student Ambassadors represent the college at NCC Foundation events and a wide variety of school functions, assisting during times such as registration and open house. In the spring of each year, a selection committee interviews and selects the ambassadors. Ambassadors receive a scholarship and serve the college in the subsequent school year.

Golfers Tee Off October 2, 2014

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Golfers participating in the 25th Annual Nash Community College Foundation Student Scholarship Golf Classic will have a chance to win a 2014 Buick LaCrosse as a hole-in-one prize sponsored by Davenport Autopark. Pictured f​rom left, Davenport Autopark General Manager Neill Nelson, NCC Dr. President Bill Carver, and NCC Foundation Executive Director Pat Daniels. Golfers will tee off October 2nd at 8 a.m. or 1 p.m. at Benvenue Country Club in Rocky Mount for a day of challenging fun, while providing scholarships for deserving college students. Registration begins at 7 a.m. Players who select the morning tee time will receive $100 off of registration.All proceeds from the golf classic will provide student scholarships and support the needs of Nash Community College. The format for this year’s tournament will be Captain’s Choice. For more information or to register, visit www.nashcc.edu/golf.

Students Complete Detention Officer Training

DOCC_Fall14_02Students from Nash County and Johnston County’s Sheriff’s Department recently completed Detention Officer training at Nash Community College. The certification includes 181 hours of training designed to train qualified participants to function as officers in detention facilities. The course is governed by the North Carolina Sheriffs’ and North Carolina Criminal Justice Education and Training Standards Commissions. Students who completed the certification program are: (from left) – Joshua Williford, Cody Williams, School Director Reuben Crumpton, Christina Bottoms, Bernardo Gonzalez, Daniel Wrenn and James Hinton.

A True Definition of Blue Love

1038Blue Love – To some it may sound silly, but it represents something quite serious…a topic many may not wish to address. As Dr. W. Dallas Herring, the father of North Carolina community colleges intended from the inception of the system, our goal is to “….take people from where they are, as far as they can go.” And that is exactly what Blue Love does.

 
In her April 2013 TED talk, experienced educator Rita Pierson said, “We know why kids drop out. We know why kids don’t learn. It’s either poverty, low attendance, negative peer influences. We know why. But one of the things that we never discuss, or we rarely discuss, is the value and importance of human connection, relationships.” It has been suggested that the same is true about college students; many who drop out, do so because they do not feel there is value in what they are doing, or they feel that no one cares about them.

To help ensure student success, Nash Community College recognizes that not all students are alike, and that many face challenges beyond those arising in the classroom. Food insecurity, test anxiety, post-military life challenges, learning disabilities, transportation problems, mental health issues, financial concerns, substance use, impaired access to technology and health care needs are among the obstacles to learning that some NCC students encounter. These concerns must be addressed in order for learning and positive student outcomes to occur; and that is just what Blue Love does.  Additionally, NCC faculty have engaged in rigorous instructionally focused professional enrichment to help them engage students at the highest level.

NCC instructors share Blue Love by understanding these differences and addressing holistically the barriers to student learning. To be effective, NCC instructors have to be engaged, energized, and happy to be in the role they are in. Blue Love puts this level of faculty and staff commitment into action. “Teaching and learning should bring joy. How powerful would our world be if we had kids who were not afraid to take risks, who were not afraid to think, and who had a champion? Every child deserves a champion, an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be,” Pierson said. NCC believes the same to be true about its students…every student deserves a champion.

The recent rollout of the Student Wellness Center with clinical outreach counseling is one way NCC connects students with qualified professionals and community resources who can offer support. The college has devoted a full-time employee to helping students get connected with organizations and people who can assist with their individual needs. Marbeth Holmes, NCC’s Clinical Outreach Counselor, holds an Associate in Arts degree from Louisburg College, a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Meredith College, a Master of Arts degree in English from Abilene Christian University, and a Master of Science degree in Social Work from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Holmes has been working at Nash Community College since August 1998, and is part of the college’s professorate class.

The Wellness Center’s scope of services includes screening and assessment, crisis intervention, personal counseling, support groups, referral services for chronic care, psycho-education, cognitive-behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy and more. Holmes is trained to provide assistance to special populations in need of therapeutic support groups such as veterans, single mothers, survivors of trauma and domestic violence, drug abusers and others. College resources that also provide assistance to students include: the Student Government Association, MALE mentoring program, the Library, a food pantry, and success closet with professional attire for students who need clothing for work or job interviews.

Blue Love is signified with hands in the shape of hearts, buttons, and blue tie dyed tee shirts, but these representations stand for much, much more. And those who live in local and surrounding areas can attest to the impact of Blue Love each day when they are treated by nurses, use locally fabricated products, receive goods transported by a CDL graduate, are served in a restaurant by a culinary student, and experience the protection and service of law enforcement or fire services agencies. So, this term that I and others have referred to recently, is not simply about the donning of apparel and smiles by NCC employees; it is about building caring, meaningful relationships with our students, with each other, and with the community.

NCC Medical Assistants Earn Diplomas

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Nash Community College recently held a pinning ceremony to recognize eleven graduates from the medical assisting diploma program. Each individual completed the academic and clinical work required to become Medical Assistants as determined by the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA). According to program director Nancy Worsinger, “Some have chosen to enter the workforce at this time, while others have returned to campus this fall for additional coursework leading to an associate’s degree in applied sciences.” All of the graduates are eligible to take the national certification exam that will earn them the credential of Certified Medical Assistant, or CMA.

 

This is the seventh class of diploma students to reach this milestone since the Nash Community College program began in 2007. The college developed the program in response to the needs of the surrounding health care community and since that time, the demand for qualified medical assistants has continued to grow. The National Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 29% increase in employment for medical assistants over the next 10 years and we have seen that reflected locally in the excellent job placement rate of our graduates.

 

“The list of required courses for the diploma is very long – totaling 45 credit hours – and requires an overload every semester if completed in one year,” Worsinger said. “Since many of our students are adults with families and part-time or full-time jobs, time management skills are critical to success. I’m continually in awe of what our students are able to balance. And for many, it is the support and understanding of family and friends that make their success possible.”

 

Pictured on the front row, from left to right: Anna Owens, Elm City; Morgan Willcox, Rocky Mount; and Jessica Winstead, Wilson.  Second row: Janicia Rover, Roanoke Rapids; Maria Caudle, Rocky Mount; and Melanie Craft, Rocky Mount. Back row: Janet Silver, Louisburg; Elizabeth Hernandez, Bailey; and Shonlel Evans, Rocky Mount. Not pictured: Amber Crocker, Rocky Mount and Sonal Rathod, Rocky Mount.

Phi Theta Kappa to Host “Commitment to Completion” Signing at Nash Community College

Statistics show the surest way for anyone to land a job in their chosen field is to finish college and earn a degree or certificate. And that’s exactly what students at Nash Community College are promising to do. They are signing a mass pledge to complete their associate degrees or certificates before leaving the community college for transfer or entering the job market. Administrators, faculty and staff have also been asked to sign the pledge, committing themselves to do whatever they can to facilitate completion of student credentials.

On November 19th, students will gather to sign the completion pledge, part of a national community college movement. They will also hear from student guest speakers. The event is being hosted by Nash Community College’s Beta Upsilon Delta Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa along with the support of the Nash Community College Alumni Association and college administrators. Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society members are serving as the student arm of the Community College Completion Challenge, a national education initiative. Learn more at www.cccompletioncorps.org .

In April 2010 leaders of six national organizations representing the nation’s 1,200 community colleges signed The Call to Action, a pledge to increase student completion rates by 50 percent over the next decade. Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society was the only student organization asked to participate. Phi Theta Kappa launched the Community College Completion Corps in response to this call.

At the 2010 White House Summit for Community Colleges President Obama called for community colleges to produce an additional 5 million degrees and certificates in the next 10 years, part of a goal to restore the United States as the world’s leader in college graduates. The U.S. is now ranked 16th among industrialized countries in the percentage of citizens holding higher education credentials.

It is reported that students who complete their degrees or certificates will earn an average of $500,000 more over the course of their careers than their peers who did not complete. In addition, individuals with credentials are less likely to become unemployed than their co-workers who did not earn credentials.

Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, headquartered in Jackson, Mississippi, is the largest honor society in higher education with 1,280 chapters on college campuses in all 50 of the United States, Canada, Germany, the Republic of Palau, Peru, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the British Virgin Islands, the United Arab Emirates and U.S. territorial possessions. More than two million students have been inducted since its founding in 1918, with approximately 135,000 students inducted annually. Learn more about Phi Theta Kappa at www.ptk.org .