February 2014 Kudos

Week of February 23rd – March 1st, 2014

ProfessorJosh.com Wins Best in Category at Sunshine Blog Awards

josh-murdock-270wCongratulations to Josh Murdock, instructional designer, whose blog, ProfessorJosh.com, was named Best Educational Blog on Education/Parenting for 2013 at the FLBlogCon Forum on January 11, 2014.

FLBlogCon is a blogger and social media conference that convenes the state’s largest gathering of bloggers and social media pros. The Sunshine Blog Awards encompass 20 categories that showcase the best of the best.

Week of February 16th – 22nd, 2014

Employee Congratulations: Jeff Hogan

jeff-hogan-270wA message from Falecia Williams, President, West Campus

Congratulations to Jeff Hogan, functional IS support specialist, who was elected director for a one-year term to the board of the Florida Council of Instructional Technology Leaders (FCITL). FCITL is a K-20 organization that has a mission to:

A.  Promote the enhancement of the instructional process through the effective use and integration of technology.

B.  Promote cooperation and communication among the district and state leaders who impact technology use in education.

C.  Positively influence legislation and policies regarding funding, development and integration of instructional technology use in Florida.

D.  Recognize the vital role of the instructional technology professional and promote professional growth opportunities.

An experienced educational technologist and Florida-certified professional educator and administrator, Jeff has been employed with Valencia since March of 2007. Jeff guides instructional technology for all of the allied health and nursing programs on West and Osceola campuses and is an adjunct instructor in the education and psychology departments.

Week of February 9th – 15th, 2014


Valencia Features Night of Top-Notch Modern Dance

3inmotion-2014-groveCongratulations to the Valencia Dance Theatre for its first-rate Three In Motion performance on Friday, January 31, 2014. The concert also featured Dr. Phillips High School Dance Magnet and professional dance company Yow Dance.

The night of high-energy modern dance featured 10 numbers ranging from a flowing and elegant duet to several up-tempo, rhythmic and powerful group pieces with eight to nine dancers. Valencia dancers were flawless, making it difficult to differentiate between the professional and the student dancers.

Valencia Dance Theatre performs four major dance concerts on the East Campus each year and tours to area Central Florida K-12 schools and conferences throughout the country.

Save the date for the Valencia Spring Dance Concert, March 14 and 15, 2014, at 8 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center. The concert, designed to highlight faculty works and that of guest choreographers, will feature both student and faculty dancers.

Tickets are $12 for the general public, $10 for employees and free to Valencia students with ID.

Week of February 2nd – 8th, 2014

Mike Bosley Makes Commitment to Community as East Orlando Chamber Chair

mike-bosley-groveMike Bosley, executive dean, Lake Nona Campus, was named chair of the East Orlando Chamber of Commerce (EOCC) Board of Directors on January 15, 2014. The EOCC has been in existence for more than 60 years in the community, and Mike shares that his immediate goal is to provide leadership and coordination to chamber staff and the board of directors.

“Collaboration is key to our success in this economy, so I plan on continuing our work with other chambers to share resources and ideas that will make our community even better,” he said, noting that the EOCC is a catalyst for community involvement.

Partnering with the community by involving the College in meeting the community’s needs and goals is one of Valencia’s strategic goals. Mike looks forward to continuing to develop strategic partnerships that bring together the growing community.

“We often bring businesses and the general public together in a variety of events in East Orlando including Education Day, Community Kickball Tournament, monthly luncheons and our Visioning Event,” Mike shares. “What’s more, the EOCC has a tradition of providing the highest quality networking opportunities for our members.”

Winter Park Professor Wins T.S. Eliot Prize for Poetry Collection

A message from Stacey Johnson, President, East and Winter Park Campuses 

ilyse-kusnetz-groveCongratulations to Ilyse Kusnetz, professor, English, on the Winter Park Campus, who won the 2014 T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry for her collection, “Small Hours.” The competition, established in honor of Missouri native T. S. Eliot and sponsored by Truman State University Press, is an annual award for the best, unpublished book-length collection of poetry.

Ilyse, whose manuscript was selected from nearly 400 entries, will receive $2,000 and publication of her manuscript, which is scheduled for fall 2014.

Competition Judge Dorianne Laux complimented Ilyse’s work saying,“‘Small Hours’ contains poetry of historic and global empathy, various in its subjects though not in its voice, which is clear, fierce, precise and thoughtful.”

Ilyse previously published a chapbook, a small collection of poetry, called “The Gravity of Falling,” and her poetry has appeared in “Crab Orchard Review,” “The Cincinnati Review,” “Crazyhorse,” “Stone Canoe,” “Rattle,” “Atlanta Review,” among other journals.

Two Valencia Employees Raise $2,350 for Families of Navy SEALs

Heff-and-Shauna-groveCongratulations to Shauna Dillon Anstey, assistant director, conferencing and college events, and Dave Heffernan, assistant director, Criminal Justice Institute.

The pair raised more than $2,350 for the Navy SEAL Foundation by participating in the 2014 Tampa Bay Frogman Swim, a 3.1-mile swim across Tampa Bay on January 19, 2014.

Money raised from the 3.1-mile swim helps families of Navy SEALs who are wounded or killed in action.

This was Shauna’s second year completing the event.

Karen Cowden Awarded William C. Demetree, Jr. Foundation Chair in Education for Special Needs

By Karen Cowden, Professor, Reading

karen-cowden-groveKaren Cowden, professor, reading, has been awarded the William C. Demetree Jr. Foundation Chair in Education for Special Needs. Her endowed chair gives Valencia students who are deaf the opportunity to take final exams using a multi-modal combination of traditional print and videos of the exams interpreted in American Sign Language.

“Using opportunities afforded through this endowed chair has allowed collaboration sessions between faculty and OSD offices and opens the doors for better services for our students, as well as builds a bridge between technology and teaching,” shares Karen.

This multi-modal approach constitutes an immersed educational experience, bringing text to life, making reading relevant and improving comprehension during their final exam tests.

A critical goal of Karen’s work was to build collaboration between faculty and the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD) to provide all campuses a platform to give deaf students an equal opportunity to demonstrate mastery of reading concepts.

She hosted a “Lunch-and-Learn” session in January 2014 for faculty and staff where Crystal Smith, adjunct professor, English, delivered a mini workshop on her personal challenges with special needs during her educational journey.

Deborah Larew, director, Office of Students with Disabilities, shared the many connections between technology and library services for students, and Chris Cuevas, assistive technology specialist, performed a teaching demonstration of ECHO “LiveScribe” pens, which record and play back everything you write or hear, and allow you to transfer your notes and audio to a computer. One lucky instructor, Deborah Ball, adjunct professor, sociology, won an ECHO pen in the raffle.


  • Diane Orsini said:

    Yay, Karen!

    PMMon, 03 Feb 2014 21:58:04 +0000Mon, 03 Feb 2014 21:58:04 +0000pm14,9:58 pm

  • Hanh Le said:

    Congratulations, Karen!

    AMTue, 04 Feb 2014 07:30:42 +0000Tue, 04 Feb 2014 07:30:42 +0000am14,7:30 am

  • Beth Renn said:

    Great work, Karen!

    AMTue, 04 Feb 2014 08:34:18 +0000Tue, 04 Feb 2014 08:34:18 +0000am14,8:34 am

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