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Campus Updates - Thursday, March 1, 2012

Thursday, March 1, 2012
EMCC’s 20th anniversary part of AZ centennial parade & festival

On Saturday, February 25, the cities of Avondale and Goodyear celebrated Arizona’s centennial with a community parade and festival drawing an attendance of more than 5,000. EMCC was honored to host the festival providing an opportunity to showcase the campus and co-celebrate our 20th anniversary.

EMCC participated in the parade with an entourage including the Estrella Mountain Lions women’s and men’s golf teams, EMCC staff and alumni, and one of Estrella Mountain's wrapped vehicles. Thank you to all of the students, faculty and staff who helped to make this community celebration a big success.

EMCC student scholars rank at top of 2012 All-AZ teams

EMCC students Julia Kilduff and Kodiak Darling were recently named to the 2012 All-Arizona Academic Team, and will receive a full, two-year tuition waiver to any of Arizona's three state universities (ASU, UA, NAU) as a result of a rigorous application process sponsored by Phi Theta Kappa, the American Association of Community Colleges, and USA Today. The students will now compete for the national award.

Kilduff was named to Team 1, placing her in the top 20 Arizona community college students. Her major is Speech and Language Pathology and plans to attend NAU. Darling was named to Team 3 and plans to attend ASU with a goal of becoming a bioengineer.

Scholarship Drive is a win–win for students and participants

This month, the college launched its 13th Annual Scholarship Fundraiser. Managed by the Estrella Rotary Foundation, this unique project generates close to $50,000 a year toward student scholarships. For more details on this win-win opportunity, go to driveforsuccess.org

Estrella Hall expansion underway

In February 2012, Estrella Mountain began the Estrella Hall expansion, which completes Phase III of the college's masterplan and closes out the 2004 voter approved general obligation bond program.

The Estrella Hall project includes 18 state-of-the-art learning studios and expands the library, Learning Enhancement Center and Information Commons research area. All of these learning spaces are designed to reinforce student engagement activities, while supporting multiple learning styles and promoting collaboration and teamwork.

Adjacent to Estrella Hall will be the college's new and improved community room, which will be a freestanding building designed to facilitate off-hours use. Including lobby, restrooms and full kitchen, the community room offers a large multi-use space for various community and college functions.

Click here for construction updates.

Estrella Mountain expands wellness and student life programs

In 2012, Estrella Mountain will implement changes to the Fitness Center in order to expand current wellness offerings and increase programs and services in the area of Student Life. Starting in summer 2012, all EMCC general fitness classes will be offered at the local YMCA located on Thomas and Litchfield Roads. This programming move will provide students with greater access to various types of fitness equipment, programs and services. Specialized on-campus fitness programs such as Yoga, Zumba and Kickboxing etc., will remain available in the current fitness center studio on the Estrella Mountain campus. As a result of the transition of general fitness classes to the YMCA, the existing general workout area of the fitness center will be remodeled into a new Student Union. 

The partnership with the YMCA will allow the College to continue offering students and community members a comprehensive wellness program, while at the same time expanding Student Life capabilities in an effort to increase student engagement activities and programs.

Spotlight: Learning Excellence

Congratulations to Dr. Michael Farabee, Biology Faculty, whose scholarly work in instructional technology has been peer reviewed and published in MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resources for Learning and Online Teaching). The MERLOT project is an online community of faculty and institutions collaborating to increase the quantity of high quality web-based, interactive teaching and learning materials. Guidelines include:  1) quality of content, 2) potential effectiveness as a teaching-learning tool, and 3) ease of use. Click here to read the Peer Review Report of Dr. Michael Farabee's work.

This month’s teaching tip

From the Teacher Education Institute:

Formative classroom assessment is one of the most powerful tools any teacher can employ (Marzano, 2006). They are defined as any activity that provides sound feedback on student learning. When a teacher constructs formative assessment appropriately, they then make decisions on what to teach (or re-teach) next. Tips for effective formative assessment strategies are:

  • Quizzes, questioning strategies, clickers during PowerPoint presentations, and vocabulary reviews for lower level recall strategies;
  • Higher level formative assessment strategies engage students in comparing/contrasting, classifying, creating metaphors, creating analogies, and analyzing errors (p. 68). 
  • Critical to effective formative assessment strategies is feedback to students on their progress.
  • There is a direct and significant correlation between frequency of formative assessment strategies and student achievement. Teachers that formatively assess twice per week over a semester’s time show a 30% achievement gain over those that teach the same material but have no formative assessment activities (p. 10).

Source:  Marzano, R.J. (2006). Classroom assessment and grading that work. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Submitted by:  Dr. Deborah Raffin and Pete Turner

  • SWSC Completion Ceremony
  • Friday, March 2, 2012
    4:00 PM - 6:00 p.m.
    Ceremonial Plaza

  • Last call for 2012 Innovation Awards
  • Deadline is Monday, March 5.

  • Free e-subscription for Chronicle of Higher Ed
    • Go to the Chronicle of Higher Education
    • Click on "Create a Free Account" in the upper right hand corner.
    • Make sure to use your “@estrellamountain.edu” email account.
    • You can also download their free iPad app.