Gavilan College Convocation 2018 Echoes the Past, Reaches for the Futureby Jan Janes on Sep 10, 2018
The fourth Friday of August, immediately before classes begin, staff and faculty streamed back to the main Gavilan College campus in Gilroy, taking a look at what is to come.
Opening her third convocation since she took office, Dr. Kathleen Rose, Superintendent/President of Gavilan College reached back to year one – Renaissance, and year two – Practice. Then she focused on year three – Service.
She highlighted key areas for service and leadership:
- Guided Pathways – a journey, not a one and done
- Big schedule changes to adjust to a shifting formula for funding
- Task force to advise ways we can do better, run the college effectively
- Instructional program growth, mid-year and next year
- Professional development opportunities for growth throughout the year
- Moving forward with the Board of Trustees approved general obligation bond
- Welcoming two new board members from Hollister this fall
- Plans to celebrate Gavilan College centennial, 100 years of educational service in Santa Clara and San Benito Counties
Starting in 1919, San Benito Junior College, later Gavilan College, was number 11 of the current 114 community colleges in the system. A soft launch, as the Great War ended people returned to their lives. Of the first graduating class in 1921, nine were women. The original trustees had the courage to stand up and express the need for education in their community. Dr. Rose described education as the great equalizer. What students needed then, and what they still need today.
Dr. Rose elaborated on the changes possible with the general obligation bond and Facilities Master Plan:
- Changes to a campus, many areas which have not been improved in 50 years
- Plans already submitted to the state
- 10 years in the making, announced the Fairview Corners location is approved
- A dream plan of what the San Benito campus will look like
- Build permanent structural space in Hollister
- Redesign the library and performing arts center
- A STEM center, in the first phase of the plan
- Opportunity to install one more building at the Coyote campus, a wet lab
Dr. Rose noted the changing BOG definitions of success and the ways Gavilan College will address them. She also highlighted the Gavilan's areas of promise where the college scored above average, with room to grow into a top performing college. Her vision for the future?
- Focus relentlessly on students' end goals
- Design and decide with the student in mind
- Pair high expectations with high support
- Foster use of data, inquiry and evidence
- Take ownership of goals and performance
- Enable action and thoughtful innovation
- Partner across systems
- Back to service: create "An Everyone Culture"
New Vice President of Academic Affairs Denée Pescarmona outlined the timeline for accreditation, with kudos for participants and all-stars Jane Maringer, Nancy Bailey, Ken Wagman, Fran Lozano, Sydney LaRose, Jillian Wilson, Sandra Mendoza and Marissa Haro.
Pescarmona also touched on her view of Guided Pathways using a Waze icon as directional metaphor. If everyone on campus starts with what they each see, adds what the student experiences, getting to the goal – the WHY – becomes clearer.
Vice President of Student Affairs Kathleen Moberg explained changes in student services due to funding, mandates and state compliance. She articulated the Chancellor's vision for success, explained College Promise, outlined goals, and offered detail about campus health services, SEAP, SSSP, Equity and assessment following passage of AB 705.
The slide decks for all the convocation presentations can be found here.
Stepping away from the podium presentations, the curtain rose and the music began.
A minstrel team of staff, faculty and students joined Dr. Kathleen Rose, center in black and
white, bringing the packed auditorium participants to their feet, singing and dancing.
"When I look back on my ordinary, ordinary life,
I see so much magic, though I missed it at the time."
~ Jamie Cullen / Photograph
Keynote speaker Eugene Whitlock, Vice Chancellor of Human Resources and General Counsel
for the San Mateo County Community College District, followed the musical number.
In 'Equity, Diversity and Unconscious Bias' Whitlock discussed diversity, equity, student success and equity-minded classroom practices.
After Whitlock's presentation, campus updates were available from CSEA, GCFA, ASGC and Centennial.
As stars danced across the stage, HR Director Eric Ramones and Dr. Kathleen Rose snapped
a selfie of the entire auditorium.
Following lunch, multiple sessions were available covering equity literacy, trained faculty observer, using civic engagement tactics to teach, student basic needs, guided pathways, shelter in place. The day concluded with departmental meetings.
After lunch break-out sessions covered a range of topics. "Engaging in Difficult Dialogue in
the Workplace" presented by communication instructors Denise Besson and Kelly Glass
elicited an engaging exchange with AMT instructor Herb Spencer.