Weekly Update – September 18, 2011

on September 18, 2011 in Weekly Update

Hello San Jac —

What a week it has been. On behalf of the soccer team, South Campus, and the entire San Jacinto College community, I want to express my sincere appreciation for your outpouring of prayer, counsel, concerns, and financial support for the family and friends of Jose Perez. On Saturday, I went by the BBQ fundraiser, which was being held in conjunction with the women’s softball double, double-header. There was great attendance and wide support. I noticed a couple of our Gator baseball players cheering in the stands, and several Central Campus PTK students dishing up the BBQ. The fundraising event appeared to be a huge success. South Campus President, Maureen Murphy, will be sending out more details and an official thanks in the near future.

As far as the softball game, there is definitely some talent on the team. During the game, I observed great defense plus incredible batting with a grand slam for the Lady Coyotes. The San Jac team won three games and lost one. Sounds like an exhausting day!

While the softball games were taking place on the South Campus, the Lady Ravens volleyball team was engaged in several matches with a tournament hosted by the Central Campus. The volleyball team won three and lost one heartbreaker to Blinn College, their archrival. I hear the mostly freshman team looked good and will only continue to get better.

On Saturday, I also had the opportunity to speak with the Greater Houston LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens) chapter. I highlighted many features of our work to the group, especially our student success agenda, community outreach efforts, workforce training opportunities, relationships with our independent school districts, and programs targeted to increase the college-going culture (i.e. Talent Search, Shared Counselors/Educational Planners, early testing, dual credit, and early college high schools). Several in the audience had connections with San Jacinto College (lived in our area, taught as adjunct, paid for children to attend, etc.), and the response to our efforts and mission was positive and supportive.

September is Hispanic Heritage Month. I hope you have enjoyed some of the festivities occurring throughout the Houston area. On Tuesday (September 20th) at 1:00 p.m. on the Central Campus, award winner and Emmy nominated director and filmmaker, John Valdez, will be presenting about his film, The Longoria Affair. In this production, Mr. Valdez depicts the difficulties faced by Hispanics in the 1940’s. He illustrates these difficulties through an incident that occurred in Three Rivers, Texas, when a local funeral home refused to host a wake for Pvt. Felix Longoria, a decorated Mexican American soldier. This incident played a significant role in sparking the civil rights movement in Texas. Please encourage your students to attend and try to arrange your lunch hour and schedule to accommodate attending this presentation.

In addition to hosting an award winning filmmaker, San Jacinto College has a few other exciting events planned this week. First, today is our official 50th Anniversary!! Fifty years ago today (September 18, 1961), we opened our doors to welcome 876 students.

The official kick-off of our year-long 50th anniversary celebrations will occur at the monthly Board meeting on Monday evening (September 19th). The meeting will be held at Corbin Hall in the Monte Blue Music Building on Central campus at 7 p.m. In addition to the Board business meeting, there are special presentations including interviews with one of the first students to attend the college, a long-time faculty member, and an early San Jac student who began his faculty career here and is now an administrator at the College. We will also interview current students to hear their perspective of attending San Jacinto College today. All three campuses will provide music and a video will be shown which was produced by our Ed Tech department. Monday, September 19, 2011, has been declared “San Jacinto College Day” by the Governor, State Legislature, Harris County Precinct 2, and several local city entities. I look forward to celebrating our rich past with this kick-off event.

On Wednesday, September 21st, we will celebrate San Jacinto College Day at the Pasadena Livestock Show and Rodeo. Our Board members will be riding in the grand entry, and the South Campus choir will sing the National Anthem. This is the second year that the Pasadena Rodeo has provided this opportunity to the College. I am hearing that the San Jac ticket sales for the Pasadena Rodeo are a little slow. I encourage you to consider coming out to the Rodeo and bringing your family. It’s a fun event and $2 of every ticket sold at the College goes back into student scholarships. In addition, San Jacinto College is the college of choice for many of the recipients who receive scholarships directly from the Pasadena Rodeo Association. Tickets for rodeo are available at each campus business office and at the district office business office. Put on your boots and jeans and come on out!! Or just wear your flip-flops and shorts and come on out!!

During the College Community Week college-wide gathering at the end of August, I asked Teri Fowlé to go over some of the features of the college website. In the presentation, she showed a beta version of an employee website and announced that the Information Technology Department (IT) and marketing department were working on an update to the college online directory and the employee resource information on the website. This new employee site and online directory information will “go live” next week. Watch for the emails from the marketing and IT departments on these changes and be sure to check out the new and improved features. These changes were the result of feedback and input from employees. These changes are more employee-friendly and provide the information that was requested. If there are additional information or features that you would like added, let Teri know.

In closing, I want to again reference my presentation with the Greater Houston LULAC chapter. In addition to my prior comments, I stressed the importance of helping our current, prospective, and future students to dream of the possibilities and the opportunities that a post-secondary education can afford them. I spoke about the need to encourage students to dream and then providing them the tools to achieve their dreams. I end this update with a statement from French poet, journalist, and novelist Anatole France, “To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe.” At San Jacinto College, we believe in our community; we believe in our employees; and we believe in our students. Working together, we will continue to accomplish great things.

Have a great week!

Best,

BH

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