Monthly Archives: December 2019

Happy Holidays

Thank you for your work in 2019 to transform lives and inspire our students to excellence. Before we head off for a fun-filled winter break, please enjoy this slideshow of Valencia celebrations and holiday cheer.

Season’s greetings to all from Valencia College!

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Supervisor Summit Reveals How Influence is Essential to Our Work as Supervisors

Supervisors convened for the Supervisor Summit on Friday, November 22, 2019, at the West Campus to network, receive Valencia College updates and to engage in their own development.

In the spirit of the upcoming Thanksgiving season, the theme of the event was “Thanks for the Role You Play.” At this Summit, new supervisors were asked to partner with veteran supervisors to discuss some of the greatest benefits and challenges of being a supervisor at Valencia College. This was a unique opportunity for new supervisors to find connections and gain insights from those who have been supervising for many years.

The majority of the program was allotted for professional development as guest speaker Kim C. Shaw, a John Maxwell licensed speaker and a certified leadership coach, shared how the role of influence is essential to our work as supervisors. She asked supervisors to consider all of the ways in which they currently influence those around them, including their peers, direct reports and even their own supervisors. As Shaw admitted, the concepts aren’t revolutionary, but the practice of acknowledging your individual influence and intentionally creating practices to strengthen trust and communication can have tremendous benefits to both your team and the organization as a whole.

When asked in the post-session survey “how you may use influence in your position,” some supervisors shared:

  • To be an advocate for my team and find opportunities for them to shine in front of leadership.
  • I will start with active listening.
  • I might use influence to motivate my staff and to eventually help them grow and move on to a higher position.
  • Increase communication with dept. staff that don’t report to me.
  • I think influence can be used in many ways as we work together to move toward our shared goals.

To view the Supervisor Summit presentation, click here.

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Managing Smart: Committing to Performance Management

None of the work we accomplish at the College is possible without the collective support of talented individuals serving across the College. In support of our employees’ efforts, one of the most important aspects of supervision is leveraging available skills, tools and resources in providing ongoing support and development to the members of our teams.

At its core, performance management is a way to activate talent and is infused at each stage of the employee life cycle — from onboarding and setting expectations, to supporting professional development, providing ongoing recognition and feedback, and addressing performance concerns that may arise.

So, what might that look like in practice?

Let’s start with tips for when someone is new to the College and/or your team. To set our employees up for success, as it relates to role clarity and how their work benefits the team, we recommend starting with conversations about their roles and responsibilities, what is expected of them in the workplace as well as what professional development opportunities they are interested in and what resources are available to them. Having these conversations early and often ensures role clarity and that there is a mutual understanding of what is expected of our employees and how we can best support them in accomplishing their goals.

Most importantly, it helps all involved to develop a respectful and meaningful connection as professionals. Because performance management is an ongoing process, these initial conversations can serve as a great foundation to reference in our regular follow-up conversations.

As our relationships and professional connections with our employees progress, it is also important that as part of our commitment to performance management practices we provide ongoing coaching as feedback. These initial expectation-setting conversations serve as great reference points for us to highlight what is going well, as well as draw attention to what might require further development or immediate improvement.

In upcoming articles, we will take a more in-depth look into performance management tools and discuss how supervisors can use coaching to revitalize your department.

For performance management support, contact Organizational Development and Human Resources at or 407-299-5000, extension HR4U (4748).

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Now Accepting Workshop Proposals

A Message from Deanne Abrams, Director, Employee Development

One of our greatest Total Rewards is the opportunity to take advantage of professional development workshops, all of which are free of charge to Valencia employees through the Valencia EDGE. We’re seeking new presenters and workshops on Valencia’s Employee Competencies for the upcoming professional development schedule, so we invite you to share your area of expertise.

We are looking for innovative and informative workshops to be presented by Valencia employees, for Valencia employees, that will be included in the January – July 2020 Employee Development schedule.

To submit a workshop proposal, click the button below.If there is topic or idea you are interested in developing and presenting this spring, please submit a Workshop Proposal Form by Friday, January 24, 2020. 

If you have a workshop proposal idea or concept that you would like to discuss before submitting, please contact Employee Development at or call 407-299-5000, extension 5151. We would be happy to discuss your ideas with you.

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Career Anniversary Awards Update — January 2020

As the year comes to a close, Employee Development would like to thank you for all of the ways in which you recognized your teams this year. Your intentional acts of recognition are what contribute to us being able to build a culture together where every career is celebrated.

The next shipment of career anniversary awards will contain milestone anniversaries in January 2020 and will be sent to you no later than Friday, January 10, 2020.

As you prepare for your team’s upcoming career milestones, here are a few tips to help you get started:

  • Recognize the number of years your employee is celebrating.
  • Spotlight attributes and talents unique to your employee.
  • Share a brief story that connects a person’s career success to Valencia’s values.
  • Invite a few people to speak who would be great at expressing appreciation for your employee.
  • Invite your employee out for a cup of coffee to learn more about why he or she works at Valencia.
  • Write a special note of thanks for his or her contributions to your team, department and/or campus.

For questions or additional information, contact Organizational Development and Human Resources at, or call the HR4U helpline at 407-299-5000, extension HR4U (4748).

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Readers’ Choice: Top Viewed Articles in 2019

A Message from Organizational Communication

2019 has undoubtedly been an exciting year, and we hope you’ve enjoyed following along via your employee newsletters and The Grove. In honor of you — our readers — we took a look at the 10 most popular articles from the past year (as determined by total pageviews). Unsurprisingly, most pertain to our Total Rewards. Here they are, beginning with the article with the most views:

  1. Yessssss! Half-day Fridays are Coming Soon – 4,580 pageviews
  2. Hear From Our Candidates for East and Winter Park Campus President – 3,937 pageviews
  3. Fall 2019-2020 Welcome Back Events – 3,166 pageviews
  4. Register Today for Learning Day 2019 – 2,995 pageviews
  5. Hear from Our Candidates for Osceola, Lake Nona, and Poinciana Campus President – 2,682 pageviews
  6. Attend a 2020 Benefits Tour Session for a Chance to Win an Amazon Gift Card – 2,573 pageviews
  7. Your Parking Permit is Expiring; Get Your New Permit Today – 2,556 pageviews
  8. The Best Headline of the Year! A Pay Raise is Coming Soon – 2,049 pageviews
  9. Meet With a Financial Advisor to Plan for Your Future – 1,922 pageviews
  10. Save the Date for Learning Day 2019 – 1,805 pageviews

As always, we thank you for your readership and engagement, and we look forward to experiencing the new year together.

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Osceola Region’s ODHR is Moving!

A Message from Kathleen Plinske, President, Osceola, Lake Nona, and Poinciana Campuses

The Organizational Development and Human Resources (ODHR) Osceola Regional Solution Center is moving. Remodeling of Building 1’s second floor area means the ODHR office will be CLOSED on Monday, December 16, 2019.

Should you need to reach the department during this time, email or call the HR4U helpline at 407-299-5000, extension HR4U.

The office will reopen on Tuesday, December 17, 2019, at its new location, Building 2, Room 256; the daily hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Final Grades Are Due Monday, December 16

A Message from Kathleen Plinske, President, Osceola, Lake Nona, and Poinciana Campuses

Final grades are due via Atlas no later than 9 a.m. on Monday, December 16, 2019. It is critical that final grades are entered by the deadline; students who have “M” (missing) grades may have their spring financial aid held, spring class schedule deleted or transfer to another institution delayed. We cannot assist students with these issues until their grades have been entered. Please be sure to include a last date of attendance for students with a grade of W, F or I (grades cannot be saved otherwise).

For faculty using Canvas to enter grades and/or last dates of attendance, please remember to select “Sync Grades -> Export Final Grades to Banner” when entering a final grade and/or entering a last date of attendance.

If you skip that step, the grades and/or last of attendance will not be moved to the student system.

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Sonia Casablanca Will Serve as Interim Dean in Summer 2020

A Message from Kathleen Plinske, President, Osceola, Lake Nona, and Poinciana Campuses

Professor of Business Sonia Casablanca has been selected to serve as interim dean of career and technical programs at the Osceola Campus for the summer 2020 semester. She will assume the responsibilities of the current dean, James McDonald, while he is on sabbatical leave for the summer. Sonia holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Puerto Rico, a master’s degree in management from Florida State University and an MBA from the University of Central Florida.

She recently completed her doctoral program in business administration at the University of Florida.

She has served as a full-time professor of business and business program chair at Valencia College’s Osceola Campus since 2015. During that time, Sonia has also served as a faculty advisor for two student organizations; the Association of Latino Professionals and the Entrepreneurship Club. Prior to coming to Valencia, she had more than 18 years of experience in the mortgage, real estate, and insurance industries.

Monthly Archives: December 2019

Osceola Campus’ Art Gallery Opens with Student Art Exhibit

A Message from Kathleen Plinske, President, Osceola, Lake Nona, and Poinciana Campuses

Student artists, their families and friends, and faculty and staff enjoyed a reception in Osceola Campus’ new Art Gallery (in Building A [“A” for Arts!]) on Wednesday, December 4, 2019. Students were proud to see their art on display, and the reception was a learning experience for them all.