High School Students Learn About Biotechnology at Camp

Friday, October 15, 2021

A Message from Melissa Pedone and Stanton Reed, Interim Presidents, Osceola, Lake Nona and Poinciana Campuses

On Friday, October 8, 2021 students from Celebration and Tohopekaliga high schools visited the Lake Nona Campus for a Biotech Camp. The following photos were shared by Mike Bosley, executive dean, Lake Nona Campus.


Faculty Professional Development Opportunity — Engaging Every Voice: A Primer for Creating a Safe Space for Dialogue


Friday, October 15, 2021

A Message from Melissa Pedone and Stanton Reed, Interim Presidents, Osceola, Lake Nona and Poinciana Campuses

Come learn more about how to build student participation through social-emotional learning in the classroom during INDV7320: Engaging Every Voice: A Primer for Creating A Safe Space for Dialogue, which is a 3 PD Zoom session on Thursday, October 21, 2021, from 1 – 4 p.m. or Friday, October 22, 2021, from 1 – 4 p.m.

For additional information about PD courses, certifications, instructional design, and more, please reach out to a member of the Faculty and Instructional Development team.

Transgender Actor of the Marvel Cinematic Universe Zach Barack Will Speak to Valencians

Friday, October 15, 2021

A Message from Melissa Pedone and Stanton Reed, Interim Presidents, Osceola, Lake Nona and Poinciana Campuses

Date: Thursday, October 21, 2021
Time: 1 – 2 p.m.
Location: Zoom

Zach Barack, a young transgender actor who appears in “Spider-Man: Far From Home,” will speak via Zoom on Thursday, October 21, 2021 from 1 – 2 p.m. The talk will be hosted by Humanities Professor Chris Mason.

Originally from the northern suburbs of Chicago, Zach made history in summer 2019, as the first out transgender actor to carry a major role in a Marvel film. He also appears in the musical finale to the landmark Amazon series “Transparent.” Zach is also a comedian, a songwriter and a student at the University of Southern California.

After he graduated from high school, Zach split his time between working at a queer youth organization in Washington, D.C., and a cookie store. No one knew or discussed his trans identity at the store, but it was all he talked about at the organization — a double life not unlike Peter Parker’s, albeit one with less earth-shattering stakes.

“The story of having an identity that is hidden, or difficult to pick apart, goes hand in hand with a lot of superhero stories,” Zach said. “There were moments throughout my whole life where I thought: I have to be a kid, but there’s this other side of myself that everybody else doesn’t know about. Do I share it with them or do I not?”

In his talk, viewers will get to hear his insights on queerness, coming of age, and the complexities of seeing yourself as a hero.

You’re Invited to Learn About the Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative

Thursday, October 14, 2021

A Message from Laura Blasi, Director, Institutional Evaluation

Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) courses and certificates are being provided for all faculty, staff and students without cost by Valencia College’s Institutional Review Board (IRB).

CITI courses have been developed in part to enhance the integrity and professionalism of students, faculty and staff in higher education related to ethical decision-making in research. These nationally recognized courses are relevant whether you are running studies, participating in them or you if are in a field that is shaped by research activities and related regulations.

Please join us for a half-hour overview of CITI and resources to support faculty members. We’ll discuss ways certification — which typically lasts for five years — can be used in your courses and as part of your career. Topics covered in CITI courses include: Good Clinical Practice (GCP); Human Subjects Research (HSR); Biomedical and Social/Behavioral Research; Information Privacy and Security (IPS); and Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR).

Date: Tuesday, October 19, 2021
Time: 11 a.m. or 4 p.m.
Location: Zoom

Please contact me with questions or for a copy of the recording and slides at IRB@valenciacollege.edu.

Welcome Mary Zuchovicki, Assistant Director for Student Conduct

Thursday, October 14, 2021 

A Message from Andel Fils Aime, Dean of Students

I’d like to welcome Mary Zuchovicki, who will be joining the West Campus team as our our new assistant director, student conduct on Monday, October 25, 2021.

Mary comes to us from the University of Central Florida where she served as the assistant director of student conduct and academic integrity and as the violence prevention coordinator and interim remedial measures specialist for the Office of Student Rights and Responsibility.

She received her bachelor’s degree from Loyola Marymount University, her master’s degree from the Ohio State University and is currently pursuing her doctoral degree in the Public Affairs program at the University of Central Florida.

Mary recently co-funded a non-profit organization that provides advocacy for students, families and community members and raises awareness of individual Title IX rights. Mary is passionate about topics related to Title IX, secondary trauma and self-care. She currently serves as the Association of Student Conduct Administration (ASCA) Region 8 chair where she oversees the student conduct efforts and professional development for Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

She looks forward to joining the Valencia community this fall.

Families Celebrate at the Downtown Campus

Thursday, October 14, 2021

A Message from Terri Graham, Interim President, West and Downtown Campuses

Approximately 60 Valencia College and University of Central Florida (UCF) students and families attended the inaugural Family Weekend at the Downtown Campus last Sunday, October 10, 2021.

Families enjoyed breakfast, goodies and swag bags as well as a welcome presentation and campus tours facilitated by Eugene Jones, executive dean; Edna Jones Miller, dean of students; Elizabeth Thompson, director, downtown community engagement; Chanda Torres, assistant vice president, UCF Downtown student services; and Ross Wolf, interim assistant provost, UCF Downtown. Alex Erdmann, dean, School of Culinary Arts and Hospitality, was also present to highlight the Culinary Arts and Hospitality program.

After the tours, families engaged in immersive experiences of their choice in Downtown Orlando. The experiences included Lake Eola Farmers Market and swan boat rentals, “See Art Orlando” and Downtown Orlando Historic District self-guided tours, Well’s Built Museum and the Orange County History Center.

Employees and Students Honored at Dental Hygiene Symposium

Thursday, October 14, 2021 

A Message from Terri Graham, Interim President, West and Downtown Campuses

Kudos to our Dental Hygiene program employees and students who were recently honored at the 2021 Florida Dental Hygiene Symposium that was held earlier this month at the Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista.

Robin Poole, professor, dental hygiene, was recognized for completing her second year as the president of the Florida Dental Hygiene Association, which represents more than 12,000 dental hygienists who practice in Florida.

Additionally, students Cony Collado Mendez and Diana Terracciano, received a first-place and Peoples’ Choice award for a presentation on laser therapy, and students Lizmarie Maysonet and Nicole Small received third place for a presentation on HPV. Valencia students also placed first place in a board review game competing against 17 other schools.

UCF Offers a Mighty Knights Self-defense Course at the Downtown Campus

Thursday, October 14, 2021

A Message from Terri Graham, Interim President, West and Downtown Campuses

Date: Monday, October 25, 2021
Time: 3  – 5 p.m. 

Location: Downtown Campus. The exact location will be sent after you register.
Click here to register.  

Date: Thursday, November 18, 2021
Time: 4 – 6 p.m.
Location: Downtown Campus. The exact location will be sent after you register.
Click here to register.  

You’re invited to attend an in-person self-defense course taught by University of Central Florida (UCF) police officers who are experienced and knowledgeable on topics of personal safety and threat awareness. This course focuses on mindset, preparation, and safety awareness and utilizes trained instructors to demonstrate and show the students basic physical defense techniques. The course is designed to provide attendees with information, tactics and options which we believe may be helpful in various types of crimes perpetrated against victims.

There is no cost for the class and registration is required with limited space.

Additionally, Valencia College’s School of Public Safety will offer a self-defense course on Wednesday, October 27, 2021. Click here for details.

Business Classes Shift Real-life Applications Into Gear for Business Students

Thursday, October 14, 2021

A Message from Terri Graham, Interim President, West and Downtown Campuses 

From Se7en Bites to Rejuvenate Your Plate, Valencia College students and graduates are forever making their mark on the world of small business in Central Florida. West Campus Professor of Business Matthew Kenney believes that what students learn in our Associate in Science (A.S.) business administration degree and throughout business classes at the College has an impact on their success. Over the years, his students have created personal fitness companiesin-home personal chef services and even a local restaurant.

Matthew says the concepts he teaches our students may not make sense at first, but they are the kinds of things entrepreneurs need to survive and thrive in the real world. Matthew says, “Issues discussed in Business Law I, such as contracting, premises liability and employment law do not, generally, have immediate practicality for students.”

But Matthew notes, once a student starts a business, they all begin to make sense.

The latest success story from Matthew’s classes is Cristiane Wellisch De Oliveira. Cristiane came to Valencia from Brazil. She started her health and fitness venture, iCycleX, in 2020 with a studio located in Winter Garden.

“Cristiane is a great example of how a business law student applies classroom content in a dynamic business setting,” Matthew says. “[She] is learning in the morning and taking actions that improve her business, and the lives of others, in the afternoon.”

iCycleX offers indoor cycling, running and fitness classes as well as classes that mix exercise activities and can help members transition from one sport to another. Cristiane is just thrilled Valencia is preparing her so well for the future. She’s already graduated with her Associate in Arts and has been working on an A.S. in marketing for the past three years.

“Valencia has encouraged me to be myself and to try new things,” she explains. “My classes have taught me to be responsible for everything and prepare for the business world.”

To Matthew, Cristiane’s story is just one more example of how Valencia helps students gear up for success.

“Such is the beauty of education, and such is the power of Valencia to strengthen our community,” Matthew says.

Florida Engineering Society Recognizes Charles Davis and Our Engineering Student Chapter

Thursday, October 14, 2021

A Message from Terri Graham, Interim President, West and Downtown Campuses

Kudos to Charles Davis Jr., visiting professor, math, for receiving the Florida Engineering Society (FES) Engineering Faculty Member of the Year Award and the FES Award for outstanding service to the Engineering profession for 2020-2021.

These awards are given each year to an individual who has — by virtue of his/her service — had a significant positive impact on the engineering profession and has exemplified and consistently worked to promote the ideals of professional engineering within the educational system.

Each year, FES offers the opportunity for professional recognition through its various awards programs. Selection is made by the FES Awards Committee, and recipients are recognized at the Annual Summer Conference and Exposition and through the society’s publications.

In addition to Charles’ recognition, Valencia College received the Honorable Mention Award for the Most Active Chapter for 2020-2021. The FES Most Active Student Chapter Awards are presented to student chapters based on the quality and quantity of chapter activities, the increase in membership and involvement with the parent chapter, the university and the community.

“Leaders stand out by the nature of their commitment and the integrity of their character,” shared Charles. “I consider myself fortunate and extend my heartfelt appreciation for the awards presented to me by Florida Engineering Society. I much like the Valencia College Florida Engineering Society Club feel very privileged to be acknowledged for receiving these awards.”

Congratulations to Charles and our Engineering Society Club!