January 9, 2006

Travel abroad opportunities many; new trips in planning stages

Deadlines are fast approaching for deposits on Columbus State's popular travel abroad classes, most of which are offered during Summer Quarter for 1-4 weeks.

Trips to France, Greece, Mexico and Jamaica will depart in June after Spring Quarter ends. A trip to the American Southwest, while not abroad, takes students into a unique environment to study Native American culture in New Mexico and Arizona.

Exciting news from the Office of Global Initiatives details plans for new trips to Australia, China, Senegal and Italy, as early as Summer Quarter 2007, according to Bob Queen, administrator for the office.

"Traveling abroad with a student group can be a life-changing experience," says Queen, who coordinates all of Columbus State's study abroad trips. "It gives the student's education a global perspective that can never be obtained through a book. It's a challenging task to arrange and schedule these trips, but especially in the community college environment, offering the chance to travel and learn adds so much value to their education."

Currently accepting deposits on Summer Quarter trips are groups traveling to France, Mexico, Jamaica and Greece, as well as the cultural diversity class in the American Southwest.


Dr. Julie Molnar coordinates the 2-week Cultural Tour de France during which students tour Paris traveling the Seine starting at the Eiffel Tower and finishing by touring the Louvre. The group will ride the famous TGV Bullet Train to Avignon on the Rhone River, and then tour various historic and cultural locations in the Provence region, including ancient Roman theaters of Nimes, the aqueduct of Pont-du-Gard, and the famous town of Les Saintes Maries de la Mer. Students are not required to enroll in a French class, but can earn two credit hours for FREN 299 by completing an individualized project upon their return.


Associate Professor Daniel Chaney coordinates students on a study abroad experience to Cuernavaca, Mexico, located about 50 miles south of Mexico City, at an altitude of 5,280 feet, and surrounded by ravines, tropical vegetation and waterfalls.  

The trip is a true "study abroad" as the students are housed with local Mexican families and study at the Cemanahuac Language School for four hours daily. The students also are able to immerse themselves in the culture and daily life of the town, and they take field trips to historic and cultural locations. The course offers 2-week and 4-week options, and students can earn up to five credit hours in Spanish, even if they have never studied the language, as coursework is geared to their individual skill level.


The Discovery Bay Marine Biology Lab is the destination for study abroad in Jamaica, coordinated by Dr. John Francis. During the nine-day trip, students learn to snorkel and scuba dive, study marine life in the reefs of the Caribbean, and take excursions and hikes into the Blue Mountain Rain Forest, Green Grotto Caves and Dunns River Falls.   The students earn two credits for BIO 105, and there are no prerequisites.



Last year's trip to Greece was a big success, and this year professors Mark Bocija, Tim Davis and Sandy Drakatos plan to lead another group "Sailing with Theseus," June 9-24. "The aim of the course is to allow students to study topics related to Ancient Greek history, art, philosophy and religion," according to the faculty. "We will give students the opportunity to visit actual historic sites that have shaped the course or Western Civilization." Students earn five credit hours, and are required to have completed HUM 11 and ENG 101 prior to enrolling.

American Southwest

During the Southwest Experience, coordinated by Michael Schumacher of the Social and Behavioral Sciences, students can earn five credits for SSCI 101 while examining Native American cultures including the Hopi, Zuni, Acoma, Navajo and Havasupai peoples. Students hike and camp in the Grand Canyon, visit Monument Valley and Canyon de Chelly on the Navajo Reservation, meet Native American artists and study cultural diversity. Many of the overnights are spent camping, and students bring their own camping equipment.  

The cost of the trips varies, and tuition and textbooks are not included in the price. Most trips do not require any prerequisite coursework, and several allow students to earn credits by completing online requirements or special projects upon their return.


Development Foundation has outstanding year

The year 2005 proved to be very successful for the Development Foundation not only in increasing funds raised, but in increasing the number of donors, and number of scholarships and grants awarded. Some of the accomplishments include:

  • At Taste the Future, announced $2.5 million raised during year one of the Support What Works campaign.

  • Awarded $250,000 in scholarships helping 181 students with scholarships.

  • Increased donor base with 473 brand new donors--and still counting.

  • Launched our first-ever alumni calling program that brought in 200 of the 473 new donors and $8,500.

  • Provided $50,000 in funding for mini-grants for student-centered programs.

  • Provided $50,000 to help replace and upgrade the college's information monitors.

  • Instituted a Donor Relation Program complete with giving levels and giving options.

  • Hosted another great Taste the Future fundraiser and increased ticket sales over last year.

  • Welcomed two new members to the Foundation Board of Directors: Richard Cheap, secretary and general counsel for Huntington National Bank, and Daniel Finkelman, executive vice president of Alliance Data Systems








Effective time management workshop for supervisors offered

If you've ever felt overwhelmed by the increasing volume of e-mails, wondered how to manage an increasing workload, or felt one more interruption or nonproductive meeting would put you over the edge, the Effective Time Management Strategies workshop may be for you. The workshop will be held 8 a.m.-4 p.m. February 13 at the Electrical Trades Center.

Gary McGuey of Franklin Covey, Terri Gehr, senior vice president and CFO in
Business and Administrative Services, and Jim Beidler, director of Communications Technologies and PC Services, will provide information to help you gain control of your time. Everyone will have a chance to share their own time management nightmares and remedies.

Attendance at the workshop is not mandatory, but if you're interested you must RSVP by January 13. Contact Susan Nault at ext. 2433 or snault@cscc.edu and let her know what type of daily planning system you currently use.


Parties to honor retirees to be held January 27

Two more employees--Mike Snider and Kathy Weiss--will be retiring at the end of the month after many years of service to the college.

From 11 a.m.-1 p.m. January 27 there will be a reception honoring Kathy Weiss, administrative assistant in Business and Administrative Services, as she embarks on her retirement. The reception will be held in Rhodes Hall Room 232. 

Later that same day, everyone will have a chance to wish Provost Mike Snider well on his retirement. After 34 years of service, Snider will be honored at a reception from 2-4:30 p.m. in Davidson Hall's second floor lobby.


Erney to keynote distance learning conference

Tom Erney, director of Instructional Services, will be a keynote speaker at the Third Annual Southeast Ohio Distance Learning conference February 10. Addressing "The Future of Distance Learning in Ohio," Erney will be one of two keynote speakers addressing online student success.

Topics for breakout sessions include examining the state of collaboration and learning environments in Ohio, securing funds for distance learning, and improving learning and access for all students through podcasting. There will be a distance learning fair, vendor exhibits, a faculty showcase of online learning, and lab tours.

The conference will be held at Washington State Community College from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. The conference is free and open to the public, but preregistration is required as seating is limited.

If you're interested in attending, call 740-374-8716 ext. 1710, or visit the conference's website at http://www.wscconline.com/wscc/dl/conference/dlc.html.