By Joy S. Jones
Suzette Dohany, professor of speech, is now leading the charge of the Collegewide Faculty Association as the body’s president from May 2015 – August 2016. The Faculty Association serves as the official voice of the faculty in matters of college governance, faculty rights, privileges, responsibilities, curriculum and teaching/learning matters.
Suzette was elected to this position by you, her peers, and is on full reassignment from the classroom during her tenure, to allow her to focus on college governance without the added pressure of teaching.
Employed at Valencia for 20 years as a communications professor, including fundamentals of speech and interpersonal and cross-cultural communications, we share with you Suzette’s leadership highlights of her career.
Study Abroad and Global Experiences (SAGE)
For the past three years, Suzette has been actively involved with the advancement of SAGE’s strategic plan by drafting Valencia’s Global Citizen Competencies and facilitating the creation of Faculty Toolkits to share with faculty members collegewide who are interested in internationalizing their courses.
“On the Winter Park Campus, I spearheaded an effort to internationalize the curriculum across the disciplines, bringing global competencies and global issues to the forefront of the classroom experience. As a result of my leadership, the Winter Park Campus has a very successful Honors track: The Global Studies Program,” she said.
Six Thinking Hats
Strengthening communication and the collaborative institutional culture of Valencia College as a whole has also been a passion of hers. To help cultivate this culture, Suzette has presented The Six Thinking Hats, a thinking skills training course that teaches parallel thinking as an alternative to an argument to the Winter Park Campus Senate, College Big Meeting, College Planning Council, Leadership Valencia, Allied Health Programs and Learning Day. She also plans on using Six Thinking Hats as a framework for decision making as the president of the Faculty Council.
Suzette has considerable experience in assessment including serving as the faculty co-chair of the Learning Evidence Team (LET) for three years and being involved in the General Education Assessment plans as both collegewide coordinator and discipline leader for speech. She also served as the chair of Learning Dimension for Foundations of Excellence and co-authored the final report for the Learning Dimension.”
As faculty co-chair of the College Planning Council, Suzette worked to establish effective communication paths for the members of the Council and was intimately involved in the efforts of various work teams that created the goals and the objectives of the current strategic plan.
Suzette shared, “As the lead facilitator for the strategic goal “Learning Assured,” I was responsible for communicating the objectives for this goal throughout the College. One of the accomplishments I am most proud of during my tenure is bringing in student focus groups as part of the process.”
Suzette notes that she is no stranger to Student Development, having served as the advisor of the Courtyard Players, a drama club, on the Winter Park Campus for eight years which, on average, involved approximately 25 students in original productions.
“Each year, under my leadership, the Courtyard Players wrote an original script for a Mystery Dinner Theater and then produced and performed it to sell out audiences of 200-plus on the Winter Park Campus.”
Civic Engagement and Valencia
“My experiences at Valencia have allowed me numerous opportunities to serve our local community,” said Suzette. “I’ve conducted several Six Thinking Hats and True Colors workshops for local schools, churches and at a home for orphaned girls in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. Currently, I serve on IDignity’s fundraising committee as the program leader for its annual fundraiser.”
She also served on the board of the Youth Ministry Institute, a nonprofit and non-denomination academy for youth ministers, where she used her assessment knowledge to help them design curriculum with measurable learning outcomes.
Suzette earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in acting and a Masters of Science degree in interpersonal communication, both from Florida State University.