September 2018 Kudos

Week of September 23 – 29

Falecia Williams Makes the Cover of Onyx Magazine

Kudos to Falecia Williams, president, West and Downtown Campuses, who was featured as the cover story of the September/October 2018 issue of Onyx magazine. In the article, Falecia answers questions about the direction of Valencia and the Downtown Campus.

“One of our overarching, long-term goals for Valencia College Downtown is to improve the quality of life of the citizens of Parramore by increasing access to programs, services and resources that provide significant benefits to help residents gain the skills and certifications needed to become employable and earn a livable wage,” she shared. “We have also highly prioritized increasing the educational attainment level and college-going rate within the downtown area. We envision a day when the learning and earning outcomes will be equitable for residents across all of the zip codes of Orange County.”

To read the article’s introduction or to purchase the issue to view the full article, visit the Onyx website.

Cheryl Robinson Named Orlando Fringe Secretary

Congratulations to Cheryl Robinson, director, honors program, who is serving as the secretary of the executive committee of the Orlando Fringe — the longest running Fringe Festival in the United States — a 14-day arts festival in Orlando’s Ivanhoe Village that attracts more than 70,000 patrons and is 100 percent unjuried, uncensored, accessible and inclusive. Additionally, 100 percent of the ticket sales are returned to the artists.

Cheryl was originally introduced to the Fringe by Chris Klinger, counselor, and has now been attending the festival for 15 years. “I call it my spring vacation, because it’s so invigorating,” Cheryl exclaimed. “I plan my spring to attend so I can see as many shows as possible — which is usually in the neighborhood of 30-40 [shows] but has gone as high as 85.”

Because of their love of the festival, Cheryl and Chris have co-sponsored a venue for approximately 10 years. “Since we do not have a business to promote, our sponsor name is ‘Two People!’ and we use our ad space to promote the shows in our venue (Purple),” Cheryl explained.

Now serving as secretary of the executive committee through 2019, this is Cheryl’s third year of a five-year term serving on the board of directors. She also serves on the governance and strategic planning committees.

In her secretarial role, she handles logistics, including coordinating communication on meeting schedules and materials, handling meeting minutes and creating a communication schedule and centralized storage for files so that everything is cataloged for easy future reference.

“What I most love about Fringe is that it is accessible art performed by people from all over the world,” she shared. “We are a non-profit organization. We have artists travel from across the U.S. and Canada, as well as from across oceans from places such as Japan, Sweden, Australia and the U.K. … There is truly something for everyone with drama, comedies, musicals, one-person shows, ensemble casts and artists that range in age from 3 to 103 (really!) … We also have partnered with Quest the last couple of years and have sponsored sensory friendly performances for Quest clients.”

The 28th annual event will take place Tuesday, May 14 through Monday, May 27, 2018, in Ivanhoe Village, with the majority of the events taking place in Orlando’s Loch Haven Park.

In addition, she said, “We are also expanding our year-round programming and have our next event coming up Monday, October 29, 2018, in which five groups will take a section of ‘The Exorcist: The Power of Fringe Compels You!’ and interpret and perform it in their genre.”

Cheryl concluded, “Fringe is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you are going to get, but you’ll always get a friendly smile and a good story.”

Week of September 9 – 15

Valencia’s Florida Engineering Society Chapter Honored During Annual Conference

A Message from Falecia Williams, President, West and Downtown Campuses

Congratulations are in order for Valencia’s student chapter of the Florida Engineering Society yet again. On Friday, August 3, 2018, during a Florida Engineering Society (FES) annual conference, held Wednesday, August 1 – Saturday, August 4, 2018, Valencia’s chapter was named Most Active Chapter among two-year engineering programs in Florida. This is the fifth consecutive year that Valencia has won the award.

The award recognizes the chapter’s commitment to creating successful, engaging community events, proactively developing skills workshops to promote learning and fostering networking opportunities.

Chapter advisor and part-time Engineering and Math Professor Charles Davis explained that the conference also serves as an excellent opportunity for students to connect with FES members and member organizations, which often results in the securing of internships and career opportunities.

In addition to being named Most Active Chapter, which includes a $200 reward, the chapter also received $1,000 from the FES Foundation during the conference.

Looking to the future, the chapter aims to further its growth and achievement by supporting students’ academic and professional growth. Specifically, the chapter’s leaders are forging new relationships with other schools’ engineering societies, reactivating the University of Central Florida FES chapter and considering starting a chapter at Seminole State College. In doing so, students will be able to expand their network and access even more professional opportunities.

Week of September 2 – 8

Jerry Hensel’s Work Accepted for Publication
Professor of Computer Programming and Analysis Jerry Hensel’s manuscript, outlining the Valencia Technology Club’s programs and events, has been approved for publication in the October 2018 issue of “Innovation Showcase,” a League of Innovation periodical.

This manuscript outlines the work of the East Campus Tech Club, including mention of it winning an Innovation of the Year award in 2017 and 2018, for the club’s computer donation and computer repair program.

In addition, the manuscript mentions several important pioneering events undertaken by the club, including technology field trips to local businesses in Orlando.

Way to go, Jerry!

Tamara Madison’s Poetry Collection Published

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

Trio House Press, an independent literary and collective press, recently published “Threed, This Road Not Damascus” by Tamara J. Madison, professor, English.

Tamara has toured internationally as a writer, poet and performer and has also had her creative works published in various journals and magazines, including “Poetry International,” “Extract,” “Web del Sol Review of Books,” “Tidal Basin Review” and “aaduna.”

Her most recent poetry collection, “Threed, This Road Not Damascus,” is a collection of modern free-style poems that share the speaker’s encounter and journey with a mythical/spiritual being. The poems are in a storytelling dialogue focusing on relationships (to self, family, community and history). The aesthetics in this book lean heavily on imagery, rhythm and oral tradition.

“This book is a long, long labor of love that has been a liberating and empowering rite of passage for me as the poet,” Tamara shared. “My hope is that it will bless and empower the reader as well.”

Dean of the School of Arts and Entertainment Wendy Givoglu Publishes a Book Chapter about Hashtag Activism

Dean of the School of Arts and Entertainment Wendy Givoglu has co-authored chapter six in the book, “Discourses of (De)Legitimization, Participatory Culture in Digital Contexts,” and the book is currently available for pre-order.

This volume shares a comprehensive analysis of the ways in which digital communications facilitate and inform discourses of legitimization and delegitimization in contemporary participatory culture. The chapter is entitled, “Understanding Participatory Culture through Hashtag Activism After the Orlando Pulse Tragedy.” To learn more about the book, click here.

Congratulations, Wendy!

Karen Styles Honored With Faculty Association Award

Left to right: John Niss, Faculty Association president; Karen Styles, professor humanities; and Geraldine Gallagher, foundation president and chief executive officer

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

Congratulations to Karen Styles, professor, humanities, for winning a Faculty Association Award for Excellence in Teaching, Counseling and Librarianship.

This award recognizes faculty members who have demonstrated effective and innovative teaching methods and a continuing commitment to student success through student engagement both inside and outside the classroom. As part of winning the award, Karen was presented a check for $1,000 and a plaque at the Academic Assembly on Thursday, August 23, 2018.

To view a video of Karen learning she won the award via a surprise visit in her class, click here.


  • April Montallana said:

    Congrats to all our wonderful faculty and staff featured this month! I, personally, am grateful for your dedication to education and community. Valencia is everywhere!!!

    AMWed, 26 Sep 2018 11:12:25 +0000Wed, 26 Sep 2018 11:12:25 +0000am18,11:12 am

  • Rachel Allen said:

    Congratulations to Karen Styles! I have watched Karen in a leadership role at the college for many years, helping to guide adjunct faculty by supporting their growth and success. I am one of the beneficiaries of her mentoring, when I was an adjunct professor and then as I went through the tenure process, Karen was there to support me every step of the way. This is a well-earned honor! Congratulations!

    AMSat, 29 Dec 2018 06:35:08 +0000Sat, 29 Dec 2018 06:35:08 +0000am18,6:35 am

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