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The MC President's Blog

November 29, 2010 - Thoughts on Completion Agenda

(campus conversations) Permanent link

On Friday, several members of the College community will be journeying to Annapolis to participate in a Summit on Completion sponsored by the Maryland Association of Community Colleges. This daylong event will highlight the efforts of our 16-member colleges to define the completion agenda for our institutions, and will include a signed commitment by each college to increase our completion rates and to engage in substantive actions to increase student success. We believe this to be the first statewide effort following the White House Summit to define a statewide strategy in response to both Governor Martin O’Malley and President Barack Obama to increase the number of Americans who attain a college degree or credential.
 
While I am delighted to see the collaborative nature of this symposium—learning from and with each other is the only way we will truly be successful in this venture—I am more interested in articulating what this completion agenda will look like for Montgomery College and engaging our college community in candid and courageous conversations about completion. I lay awake at night with so many questions about the nuances of this ambitious agenda. My stream of consciousness kind of looks like this: How can we incentivize completion for our students? How do we get more students through, especially with the numbers who come to us underprepared for college-level work? But, have we as College articulated what is means to be “college-ready”? What should a student be able to do to enter into college-level courses? How can we leverage with MCPS to create a meaningful dialogue around this issue? And then, how do we express the relevancy of the associate degree for our students, our transfer partners, and our local employers? Even if we do that, have we explored the unintentional and unexplored infrastructure barriers that impede completion?
 
I don’t have the answers to these questions, but I am willing to ask them, willing to engage in campus conversations that strengthens our College community through student success. It doesn’t hurt to have these conversations, and I know for sure that the brilliant intellectuals of Montgomery College can figure out the answers better than anyone I know. I welcome your thoughts about how we define the completion agenda for Montgomery College.
 
Be well,
DPP

November 13, 2010 - Video Blog

(video) Permanent link

The Early Learning Center at MC-Germantown was all abuzz with finger painters, squishy blue flubber-like goo and our president, Dr. DeRionne Pollard! Dr. Pollard visited with the children and just as she sat down to deliver her weekly video message, was surprised by a presentation of a beautifully crafted mural in the spirit of a Jackson Pollock painting. 

In her message, Dr. Pollard discusses her meeting with councilmember Mike Knapp, the Fulbright Commission grant and partnering with India, a very prestigious award MC has received, and the upcoming furlough days.

November 5, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast, inauguration) Permanent link

Before heading off to vote Tuesday afternoon, Dr. Pollard stopped at the Student Life Office at the Germantown Campus. The Student Life Officers took part in an amazing initiative. The Smart Sacks initiative partners with the Manna Food Center, businesses and organizations, and elementary schools. Together, they provide children with backpacks full of kid-friendly food every Friday so they have food on the weekends when there are no school meals to sustain them.

The Smart Sacks program currently operates in more than 40 elementary schools, feeding nearly 1,400 children each week. Smart Sacks is a perfect example of how a community comes together to solve a problem.

Dr. Pollard also spoke about the inauguration, collegewide planning, a meeting with SEIU and the upcoming production of "The Happy Elf." 

October 28, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
From the Theatre Arts Arena on the Rockville Campus
Highlights: 
  • Completion of faculty and staff forums at all three campuses and WDCE
  • Leading MC on its mission to becoming the most relevant community college in the nation.
  • Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce board meeting,
  • Saturday's scholarship conference at USG
  • Inauguration festivities held Friday in the Rockville PE Center
  • Apprehension of the suspect accused of committing a sexual assault at the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus

October 22, 2010 - Special Appearance

(video, MCTV) Permanent link
Special Appearance!
In the latest episode of "Campus Conversations," hosts Marcus Rosano and Elizabeth Homan visit with Dr. DeRionne Pollard to discuss what the future holds for the College and her journey from Iowa State college student to English professor to MC president.
"Campus Conversations" airs on Montgomery College Television - Channel 10 on cable systems in Montgomery County.

October 20, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Dr. Pollard delivers her message as Brenda Salas, of the MC Wellness Program, holds a stretch class at the Mannakee Building.
Highlights: 
  • MC women's volleyball team's breast cancer awareness match
  • National Day on Writing Celebration
  • Meeting with the WDCE faculty and staff

October 14, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
This "blog" is interactive and hands-on, so check it out!
Highlights: 
  • Discussion of the College's involvement with the USA Science and Engineering Festival on the National Mall, October 23-24
  • Discussion of meeting with the Staff Senate, the president of Howard University and Delegate Hank Heller

October 7, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Highlights: 
  • Meeting with local leaders and Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley

October 1, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Highlights: 
  • The top-ranked MC women's soccer team
  • Meeting with the Board of Trustees
  • Preparing for the October 29 inauguration

September 23, 2010 - Video Blog

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From the Center for Professional and Organizational Development - CPOD - classrooms at 40 West Gude to enjoy "Just Desserts" with the administrative support staff. And yes, they DO serve tasty goodies at the "Just Desserts" sessions!

Highlights: 
  • Her appearance on NBC4's Viewpoint
  • The Gazette's "My Favorite Teacher Project"
  • Her participation in a roundtable discussion on the importance of adult higher education

September 17, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link

Speaking from Montgomery College-Germantown, under a bright sun and surrounded by a student body enjoying the Welcome Week activities, Dr. Pollard made her weekly video address.

Highlights: 
  • Her first cabinet meeting,
  • Last weekend's "Community Shred-it" event, and
  • The Montgomery College Foundation golf outing.

September 10, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Highlights: 
  • Presidential transition committee
  • "Community Shred-it" event
  • 9-11 commemoration events at MC

September 3, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Highlights: 
  • Opening of the fall 2010 semester
  • Refugee Training Center
  • Visit to D.C. and the announcement of the government's Early Retiree Insurance Program

August 27, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Highlights: 
  • Meeting new faculty
  • Speaking at the Collegewide Opening meeting on location from the automotive bay at the Gudelsky Building

August 20, 2010 - Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link
Highlights: 
  • Washington Post article featuring two MC students
  • Meeting with the Post writer
  • Visit with student reporter from the Montgomery Advocate
  • All administrator meeting at Takoma Park/Silver Spring and
  • Meetings with the area's governance leaders

My First Video Blog

(video, podcast) Permanent link

Highlights: 

  • Heartfelt thanks to colleagues
  • Meetings and campus visits
  • Weather-related closings and delays

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