The Parkland College Blog

Dr. Pamela Lau of Parkland College Chosen for National Presidential Fellowship for Community College Leaders

40 Aspiring Community College Presidents to Participate in 2021-2022 Aspen Rising Presidents Fellowship

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The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program today announced that Pamela Lau, Executive Vice President at Parkland College, is one of 40 leaders selected for the 2021-22 class of the Aspen Rising Presidents Fellowship, a highly selective leadership program preparing the next generation of community college presidents to transform institutions to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success.

The Rising Presidents Fellows will embark on the 10-month fellowship beginning in November 2021. Delivered in collaboration with the Stanford Educational Leadership Initiative, the fellows will be mentored by esteemed current and former community college presidents who have achieved exceptional outcomes for students throughout their careers, and will learn strategies to improve student outcomes in and after college, lead internal change, and create strong external partnerships with K-12 schools, four-year colleges, employers, and other partners.

"To become institutions that truly advance social mobility and talent development, community colleges must have presidents with a clear vision for equitable student success," said Monica Clark, director of leadership initiatives at the College Excellence Program. "We have selected these fellows because they share that commitment and are well-positioned to become transformational leaders."

"Dr. Lau is the right choice for this prestigious honor," said President Ramage. "No one is more prepared to rise to the challenges facing community colleges today and lead our campus into the future. I am confident that Dr. Lau will become a leader among the next generation of community college presidents. Her participation in this fellowship will result in innovative, adaptive strategies that will support the continued success of Parkland students."

The Aspen Rising Presidents Fellowship responds to the growing need for a new generation of leaders well-equipped to meet the challenges of the future. Nationally, nearly 80 percent of sitting presidents plan to retire in the next decade. While the traditional pathway to the presidency has often excluded women and people of color, the incoming class of Aspen Rising Presidents Fellows is composed of 68 percent women and 70 percent people of color, and represents institutions of varying sizes and locations.

Together, the 2021-22 fellows are leaders at colleges that collectively serve more than 400,000 students. As well, 67 Rising Presidents Fellowship alumni have become presidents of community colleges that collectively serve an additional 953,000 students nationwide.

Parkland College is a fully accredited public community college serving the needs of District 505, Illinois' third largest community college district. Offering 130+ degree and certificate options for career placement or academic transfer, Parkland has provided vocational-technical skills training and traditional academic instruction to more than 350,000 people since 1967. Parkland College's mission is to cultivate inquiry, practical application of knowledge, and broad enrichment across the community to better serve the intellectual, cultural, and economic development of the district.

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Founded in 1949, the Institute drives change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most important challenges facing the United States and the world. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Fall 2021 Enrollment Blitz

Get registered for fall 2021 classes at Fall 2021 Enrollment Blitz

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Parkland College is helping residents sign up for Fall 2021 classes both at the campus and virtually through a one-stop enrollment services event.

WHAT:   Fall 2021 Enrollment Blitz
WHO:    The public; Parkland College Student Services representatives
WHEN:   Mon–Fri, 8 a.m.–5 p.m., August 11–20; 10 a.m.–2 p.m., August 21
WHERE: Parkland College Student Union (second level) and via Zoom

DETAILS: Fall 2021 Enrollment Blitz will run Monday–Friday, August 11 through August 20, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday, August 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., both on-campus and virtually on Zoom. Students can visit the offices listed below on campus during these hours. Zoom hours are the same as in-person hours. Since Parkland College's fall semester classes begin Monday, August 23, the event is especially useful for those who have steps yet to complete in their enrollment.

During Enrollment Blitz, new and returning students can receive help from the college's Student Services offices, including Admissions and Records, Financial Aid and Veteran Services, Assessment Center, and Counseling Services. Additionally, the Parkland College Bookstore and the cashier's office will be open; the library will be open Mon-Fri, but closed Saturday.

Enrollment Blitz will help students prepare for a great new semester by completing an admissions application, filling out financial aid information, and registering for classes.

For more information on Fall 2021 Enrollment Blitz, go to parkland.edu/register, contact Admissions and Records at 217/351-2482 or email admissions@parkland.edu

Parkland Board Prepares for Return to Campus in Fall

Board of Trustees General Meeting, July 21

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Parkland College's Board of Trustees recently made strategic preparations for the return to campus this fall, including renewal of employee contracts and library database services and the purchase of a new ambulance simulator.

At its regular meeting Wednesday, the board also heard spring and summer enrollment reports from Kristin Smigielski, dean of enrollment management, and reviewed the tentative budget for FY2022. The tentative budget will be on display for public viewing in the college's business office and a public notice will appear in the News-Gazette. 

Trustees approved collective bargaining agreements with each of the college's part-time faculty, public safety officers, professional support staff, and academic employees.

Mark Sheldon, chairman of the Middleground PAC, came to honor Trustee Johnson, a former United States Congressman, during public comments by announcing a new endowed scholarship to the Parkland Foundation in his name. Mr. Sheldon shared that the announcement comes as part of an effort to distribute the funds remaining from Johnson’s prior congressional campaigns to charitable causes.

The board also approved various purchases to support the incoming class for the fall semester, including software for Parkland College Learning Commons' open-access digital repository, SPARK; database resources from EBSCO; and an ambulance simulator. SPARK boasts more than 5,500 digital scholar objects. The Learning Commons (formerly the Parkland Library) will also be supported by a renewed contract with EBSCO, which provides information-research resources and infrastructure. 

The new ambulance simulator will provide Health Professions students with "real-life" emergency medical training. It will consist of a "rear box" patient treatment compartment with lighting, storage, air, ventilation, sound, and power for auxiliary equipment.

In other business, trustees approved:

  • updates to the Policy and Procedures Manual

  • the bid from DiaMedical of Michigan for the ambulance simulator, $38,990

  • the bid from TSI Commercial Flooring for the removal and installation of carpet in the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) space in the Parkland on Mattis facility, $43,590

  • Canteen Vending Corporation as the vending service provider beginning August 1, 2021 through July 31, 2024

  • adoption of the resolution affirming the College's participation in the Champaign County Multi-Jurisdictional Hazard Mitigation Plan Update 2020

  • renewal of the 3-year lease with Education for Employment (EFE) through July 1, 2024

  • the purchase of:  

    • new grounds equipment from Deere & Company, $90,055

    • SPARK Institutional Repository renewal, $25,856

    • EBSCO Parkland Learning Commons Package renewal, $33,113

  • the filing of the following grant applications:

    • U.S. Department of Education: Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS)

    • Illinois Community College Board (ICCB): FY22 Scaling Apprenticeship Program Supplemental Grant

    • Illinois Community College Board (ICCB): Apprenticeship Grant: Customized Apprenticeship Programming—Information Technology (CAP-IT) (DOL-ETA, Year 3 funding)

  • the acceptance of funds from external sources:

    • Local Workforce Development Board 17—LWIA 17 Youth Committee: WIOA Youth Programming

    • Illinois Community College Board (ICCB): Early School Leaver Transition Program

  • personnel appointments: 

    • Tracey Hickox, Instructional Services Coordinator, Learning Commons

    • Rebecca Lewis, Selective Admissions Associate, Admissions

    • Julianna Liffick, Assistant Teacher, Child Development Center

Staerkel Planetarium to Reopen for Public Shows

Staerkel Planetarium Returns to In-Person Public Shows for 2021-2022

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The William M. Staerkel Planetarium at Parkland College will resume offering public shows this August.
 
Beginning August 6, the planetarium will offer Summer Prairie Skies, a live-narrated tour of the night sky, on Fridays at 6:30 p.m. Immediately following at 8 p.m., the new fulldome video Birth of Planet Earth will debut.

Birth of Planet Earth, produced in part by the Advanced Visualization Lab at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois, will air on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. through October 29.

One World, One Sky: Big Bird's Adventure will show on Saturdays at 6:30 p.m. through September 11. A new children's program, Did an Asteroid Really Kill the Dinosaurs? will premiere on September 18 at 6:30 p.m. and run through October 29.

Following the Phase 5 guidance of the Illinois Department of Public Health, masks will not be required for people who are fully vaccinated. The planetarium will follow a modified program schedule on Friday and Saturday evenings to allow for cleaning between shows.
 
The planetarium is available for private group shows throughout the week, and can also be booked for birthday parties, weddings, meetings, and other events depending on staff availability.

For updated show schedules, please go to parkland.edu/planetarium. Group shows may be reserved by contacting the planetarium office at 217/351-2568 or planetarium@parkland.edu.

Four Cobras Programs Earn Academic Recognition From NJCAA

Thirty-eight student-athletes earn individual recognition

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Parkland College Athletics and Parkland College are proud to announce the academic success of Cobras student-athletes for the 2020-21 academic year. The National Junior College Athletic Association recognizes teams as well as individual student-athletes for their success in the classroom. 

 

Cobras Athletics had four programs receive NJCAA All-Academic Team recognition for having achieved a combined team GPA of 3.00 or higher for both semesters. Those programs were softball (3.40), women’s soccer (3.30), volleyball (3.28), and baseball (3.24).  

 

Individual student-athletes are recognized in three different categories: NJCAA All-Academic First Team (4.00), Second Team (3.80-3.99), and Third Team (3.60-3.79). A total of 38 Parkland student-athletes received All-Academic recognition. (See full list below.) Twelve earned a spot on the First Team, earning a perfect 4.00 for both the fall and the spring semesters. Twelve more were named to the Second Team, and fourteen were named to the Third Team. 

 

Parkland teams receiving NJCAA All-Academic Team recognition 

Parkland College Softball                               3.40 

Parkland College Women’s Soccer                3.30 

Parkland College Volleyball                          3.28 

Parkland College Baseball                             3.24 

 

2020-21 NJCAA All-Academic First Team (4.00) 

David Ascencio Jr. – Baseball 

Kyle Brown – Baseball 

Lizzy Davis – Softball 

Ella Godsell – Volleyball 

Linda Jancola – Women’s Soccer 

Hogan McIntosh – Baseball 

Michelle Miller – Women’s Soccer 

Matt Parenteau – Baseball 

Summerlyn Smith – Volleyball 

Kaylee Warren – Softball 

Noah Weiman – Baseball 

Sophie Young – Volleyball 

 

2020-21 NJCAA All-Academic Second Team (3.80-3.99) 

Matheus Araujo – Men’s Soccer 

Kanay Benschneider – Volleyball 

Reagan Cheely – Softball 

Aynsleigh DeFries – Softball 

Sydney Eichelberger – Softball 

Summer Johnson – Softball 

Cole Jones – Baseball 

Johnny Lambert – Baseball 

Parker Mathieson – Baseball 

Brendan Tupper – Baseball 

Maddy Wade – Women’s Soccer 

Jack Young – Baseball 

 

2020-21 NJCAA All-Academic Third Team (3.60-3.79) 

Sam Beesley – Men’s Basketball 

Josh Candler – Men’s Basketball 

Tristan Cazel – Baseball 

Brennan Dolwick – Baseball 

Nicholas Fazzari – Baseball 

Victor Fujiu – Baseball 

Mady Harper – Women’s Basketball 

Brittney Litton – Volleyball 

Jeff Madden – Baseball 

Allie Scally – Women’s Soccer 

Emily Senjan – Softball 

Kelvin Swims – Men’s Basketball 

Anna Walker – Softball 

Claire Wilhour – Women’s Basketball 

 

[Article by Joey Gruner]

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