Monthly Archives: February 2020

Monitoring the Coronavirus – February 28, 2020

A Message from Paul Rooney, Assistant Vice President, Operations 

Valencia College administration and emergency preparedness teams are continuing to monitor the Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19). Currently there is a low risk in Florida, and to date there have been no confirmed cases in Florida. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “for the general American public, who are unlikely to be exposed to this virus at this time, the immediate health risk from COVID-19 is considered low.”

Valencia College Preparations and Plans
Valencia College officials are working in conjunction with and abiding by the guidelines provided by the federal, state and local health authorities. This includes the recommendation from the CDC that travelers avoid all travel to China, and that any students, faculty and staff members, or visitors who returned from mainland China after February 2 and onward do not attend school or work for 14 days after the return date.

In addition, Valencia’s Emergency/Crisis Management Committee for International Travel is meeting regularly to monitor outbound travel for study abroad. At this time, there are no study abroad trips planned to China, and other trips are being evaluated on a case-by-case basis. For Valencia-related, international travel, please register your trip with the SAGE office. Visit the Non-Study Abroad International Travel and Faculty Exchange Registration webpage for specific instructions.

As a part of our standard emergency and crisis planning, I am meeting regularly with Valencia’s emergency operations team to discuss any new updates, advisories or notices to determine the impact (if any) to Valencia and outline any additional actions or preventative measures.

Travel Preparations
As we look forward to spring break, we know that many of you may have travel plans. If you plan to travel, we ask that you continue to take everyday precautions recommended by the CDC including, but not limited to:

  • Washing your hands frequently to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including the Coronavirus.
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
  • Staying home if you are sick.
  • Covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue, and then throwing the tissue away.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting objects and surfaces.

Please see a healthcare professional if you are experiencing a fever, cough and/or difficulty breathing and if you think you may have been exposed to the Coronavirus. For a full list of preventative actions, click here.

In addition, as shared in the update last week, the U.S. Department of State issued a Do Not Travel Advisory (travel ban) to suspend entry of non-United States citizens — who recently traveled from the People’s Republic of China, excluding the Special Autonomous Regions of Hong Kong and Macau — to the United States. Earlier this week, the CDC also issued a recommendation to avoid all nonessential travel to affected geographical areas to include Japan, Iran, Italy and South Korea.

As you prepare for travel, reference the following sites for up-to-date information, resources and advisories:

Ongoing Communication
Please know that we will continue to provide updates on COVID-19 and share important advisories and plans. Remember that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is the best source for up-to-date information.

If you have concerns or questions about Valencia’s emergency plans, feel free to contact me directly at or call 407-299-5000, extension 1100 (office) or 321-689-7077 (cell).

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Don’t Miss the World’s Math Fair Next Week at Osceola

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

Date: Wednesday, March 4, 2020
Time: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Location: Osceola Campus, Building 4, Math Depot

Invite your students to join the fun next week at the World’s Math Fair, hosted in The Depot at Osceola Campus. Students can engage in fun activities for food and prizes. The purpose of The Math Fair is to expose students to mathematics by encouraging them to participate in fun and engaging activities related to a particular real-world theme or situation. Most of the activities are geared toward developmental and prep math students. The areas explored will include (but are not limited to) fractions, percentages, word problems, factoring, and order of operations. Students will receive a stamped passport verifying their attendance and participation.

This semester, the Math Fair will feature the following:

  • A grand prize raffle for a TI-84 CE graphing calculator sponsored by Texas Instruments
  • Giveaways for restaurant gift cards
  • Representatives from Apple, who will conduct iPhone Photography sessions from 12 p.m.- 6 p.m., to enable you to take fabulous pictures when traveling the world!

Contact Johnie Forsythe at 407-299-5000, extension 4178 for more information.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Koru Retreat Coming to Osceola Campus

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

Date: Friday, March 27, 2020
Time: 1 – 4:30 p.m.
Location: Osceola Campus, Building 4, Room 105

If you are interested in learning more about meditation, join the Osceola campus community at a half-day silent Koru retreat on Friday, March 27, 2020. The retreat will take place from 1 – 4:30 p.m., and will include time for learning as well as practice. Please communicate with your supervisor before registering here. Questions? Contact Counselor Marcia Roman at or 407-299-5000, extension 6877.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Graphics Student Wins 2020 Local Student Silver ADDY Award

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

Graphics student Naomi Butler recently won a 2020 Local Student Silver ADDY® Award for Excellence in Creativity and Execution from the American Advertising Federation for her redesign of the website for the Narcotics Anonymous Association. The American Advertising Awards is one of the industry’s largest creative competitions, attracting nearly 35,000 professional and student entries each year through local club competitions. The mission of the American Advertising Awards is to recognize and reward the spirit of creative excellence in advertising. Congratulations to Naomi and to Professor of Graphic Design Julio Falú for encouraging our students to submit their excellent work for these accolades.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Encourage Students to Take Advantage of Counseling Resources

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

Our counselors provide support and services to empower students to succeed at Valencia. Within our region, our counselors do this via short-term, solution-focused personal, academic and career counseling; faculty consultations; crisis intervention; case management; community referrals; and co-curricular development and implementation.

The Osceola Region’s counselors are Chris KlingerNatali Shulterbrondt and Alina Siddiqui. They are located in the Osceola Campus’s Advising Center (2-140). However, the counselors serve all three regional locations through tele-counseling and pre-arranged on-site counseling sessions. They encourage you to direct your students or use this online link to refer a student to counseling services and a counselor will reach out to the student.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

The Creatologists Invite You to Their Student Art and Design Exhibition

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

As part of Spring Arts Week, the Creatologists Student Club will host a night of creativity at their Second Annual Art and Design Exhibition. We will showcase a collection of original pieces from our very own Valencia College students and students from Tohopekaliga High School. The opening reception and awards will begin at 6 p.m. and the exhibit will be open for the remainder of the week. Bring a friend, and prepare to be delighted with refreshments and music.

Date: Wednesday, March 4, 2020
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: Osceola Campus, Building 1, Auditorium Lobby

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Osceola Atlas Lab Hosts ‘The Semester Awakens’ Event

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

On Thursday, February 20, 2020, 57 students participated in “The Semester Awakens” event hosted by the Osceola Atlas Lab. During the event, students embarked on a journey into our galaxy with a young Jedi named Charli Atlas, and they faced a series of challenges before they safely returned to his homeland in Atlas. Students helped him complete the challenge by hunting down clues on their Atlas accounts to finish the scavenger hunt. Thanks to the creative staff in the Atlas Lab for hosting this event.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Osceola Student Development Seeks Student of the Year

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

In partnership with the Valencia Foundation, Student Development at the Osceola Campus recognizes an outstanding student with the Dr. Joyce Romano and Mary Jane McKinnon “Student of the Year” Award. This recognition is awarded to a student who has excelled in academic achievements at the Osceola Campus — showing dedication, responsibility and diligence that distinguish him or her from peers.

To be eligible for this honor, the student must meet the following criteria:

  • Have been at Valencia for at least two semesters
  • Have been enrolled at the Osceola Campus during the semester he or she is nominated for the award
  • Have a 3.0 or higher GPA

The honoree will be recognized at the Student Leader Award Ceremony on Friday, April 10, 2020, and receive a $500 award courtesy of the Valencia Foundation.

We believe that you know your students better than anyone, which is why we ask that you nominate any students you believe deserve this award. Please submit your nominations at this link by Friday, March 6, 2020, at 5 p.m. Feel free to e-mail Student Development with any questions you may have.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Spring Arts Week: See Art Everywhere!

Valencia College will celebrate Spring Arts Week, with the theme “See Art Everywhere,” next week from Monday, March 2 – Friday, March 6, 2020. Events will be hosted at each of our region’s campuses, and you as well as your students are welcome to join in. From drawing and painting outdoors to a dance exhibition, there’s something for everyone! For the full schedule of events, click here.

Monthly Archives: February 2020

Teens for Jeans Campaign

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

Date: Thursday, March 5, 2020
Time: 12 – 2 p.m.
Location: Osceola Campus, Building 2, Atrium

Valencia Volunteers has partnered with our local Aeropostale for their “Teens for Jeans” campaign. On Thursday, March 5, 2020, from 12 – 2 p.m. in Osceola Campus’ Building 2 Atrium, Valencia Volunteers and Aeropostale will be collecting lightly used jeans. All jeans collected will be given to teenagers in our community who may be experiencing homelessness. All students and staff who donate jeans will receive a 20% off coupon for use at Aeropostale.