Highlights and Good News About Ohlone! - About Ohlone College

At Ohlone we are proud of the accomplishments made by our dedicated students, faculty, and staff. We are pleased to share several of the highlights of the past year at Ohlone, which are a mere sampling of the great things that are going on at Ohlone.

Student Accomplishments

Melissa Ng is an example of a very successful Ohlone Promise scholarship student. A mechanical engineering major, she was an engineering intern at NASA Ames Research Center. She is co- captain of the Ohlone women’s water polo team, carries 25 units, and maintains a 4.0 GPA. She says that the Ohlone Promise scholarship gives her the ability and prerogative to t ll the classes and have all the materials that she nee t be successful. The scholarship allows her to foc exclusively on her studies, and not worry so muc about the costs of college. The two-year scholarship limit in particular pushes her to not let up on her coursework, which in turn has helped her realize how much she is capable of doing. She’s planning to transfer to a UC in the fall. She is not sure if any of this would have been possible without the Ohlone Promise.

For Josue Alvarado the Ohlone Promise Scholarship changed his life. Initially struggling at Newark Memorial High School, Josue transferred to Bridgepoint Continuation High School, where he was able to significantly improve his grade point average and graduate on time. However, due to financial concerns, college was not in his plans. “Before I learned about the Ohlone Promise Scholarship I didn’t really have any college plans,” Josue said. “I thought perhaps I would work and save some money and then consider the possibility of attending. This scholarship is the whole reason I’m here and will be continuing on with my studies, hopefully at UCLA.” Josue’s goal is to complete a baccalaureate degree in psychology.

A group of Ohlone College nursing students and graduates, accompanied by faculty member Carrie Dameron and Academic Dean Gale Carli, spent 11 days in Panama on a service learning study abroad. The students set up, managed, and conducted six clinics. The Panama Ministry of Health and International Service Learning provided medical supplies, medicines, translators, tr sportation, and a physician. Over the six days, the Ohlone nursing tudents and graduates examined and treated 150 patients, mostly children.

All 17 of the Physical Therapy Assistant Program graduates from the 2015 class have passed their Boards! This means that Ohlone PTA graduates have posted a 100% pass rate on the National Physical Therapist Assistant Exam every year since 2007.

Six students from Ohlone’s Entertainment Technology and Design program served on the tech crew for Super Bowl 50 at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.

The Ohlone Forensics Team competed in the California Community College Forensics Association (CCCFA) State Championship in March 2016. Once again, the team did a fabulous job! The CCCFA State Championships brings the community college forensics teams from Northern California and Southern California together, so the competition is fierce. Ohlone brought home the Bronze in four events: IPDA (debate), Manveer Singh; Extemporaneous, Manveer Singh; Dramatic Interpretation, Sarah Goulart; and DUO, Sarah Goulart and Kivraj Singh. In February 2016 the Ohlone Forensics Team competed in the NCFA Champs at Modesto Junior College and brought home first place in the community college division! Other awards included Manveer Singh for 5th place Open Extemporaneous; Sarah Goulart, 6th Place Open Dramatic Interpretation; Sarah Goulart and Kivraj Singh, 3rd Place Open DUO; Kivraj Singh, 1st Place Open DI and 6th place Open POI; Samantha Campbell, 2nd Place Communication Analysis (CA); Jamie Avery and Manveer Singh, Open parliamentary debate semis. Congratulations to the Forensics Team for their amazing year!

Congratulations to our Women’s Soccer program as the Coast Conference South division champions with an 8-0-2 conference record. Quite a few of our student-athletes were recognized this year, including as the Conference Player of the Year, the Conference Attacking Player of the Year, and several Ohlone players named to the 1st Team All-Conference squad.

Despite being off campus the entire season due to reconstruction of the athletic fields, 2016 was a wonderful year for the softball team. Four student athletes were selected as 1st Team All-League, one student to the All Northern California 1st Team and another student to the All State 1st Team. Both of these athletes were also selected to be on the national Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All American 1st Team for Junior College. Only ten players were picked for this team from 40 colleges in Northern California. Congratulations!

Four Ohlone graduates were recently selected for upcoming internship programs sponsored by PwC, one of the top four world-wide accounting and professional services firms. During Spring 2016 they teamed up with the Accounting Department and Tri-Cities One-Stop Career Center to conduct on-campus workshops. The internship selection process is extremely rigorous, and we are making significant progress in promoting student awareness of career opportunities.

Approximately 150 Puente students and their families celebrated their graduation in May 2016 at the Newark campus. Students expressed their appreciation for the work of their instructors and counselors. The mission of the Puente Project is to increase the number of educationally underrepresented students who enroll in baccalaureate colleges and universities, earn college degrees, and return to the community and become mentors and leaders of future generations. Puente’s community college program was established in 1981. The program is open to all students.

Faculty and Staff Accomplishments

Ohlone Athletics continues to be recognized for its excellent coaching. Softball Coach Donna Runyon has been honored as the 2016 Co-Coach of the Year for the Coast Conference (North Division). Women’s Soccer Coach Larry Heslin was named the Coast Conference Coach of the Year. Congratulations Coaches!

College Accomplishments

The Fremont Bank Foundation has made a major gift to the Ohlone College Foundation to commission Mario Chiodo’s “Celebration” sculpture for the college. The sculpture was inspired by an illustration done in 1806 and depicts Ohlone and other Native Americans joining together in celebration. Installation of “Celebration” is planned to coincide with the completion of the Academic Core and Ohlone’s 50th Anniversary.

Ohlone has been recognized as number seven on a list of California’s Best Two-Year Colleges for 2015! According to BestColleges.com, their higher education experts reviewed nearly 250 two-year schools in the state, and taking into account key performance indicators such as retention, graduation, and loan default rates, Ohlone College quickly rose to the top.

During Fall 2015 the English Language Institute (ELI) had 17 new students join through the mid-entry enrollment period. Those 17 students bring the total ELI enrollment for Fall 2015 to the highest ever—110 students.

The Norton Family has donated $4,000 towards Ohlone Sign Theatre in honor of Audree Norton, Ohlone College Professor Emeritus and actress. Audree graduated from Gallaudet University in 1952 and was one of the founding members of the National Theatre of the Deaf. This donation builds on other recent gifts to the Deaf Studies Department, including a $4,000 donation from Niles Rotary for new Deaf Studies Lab computers, as well as $11,000 for the Shelley Lawrence Interpreter Preparation Program (IPP) Award, bringing the total Deaf Studies donations for 2015-2016 to over $19,000. Ohlone is very grateful for all of these generous donations.

The EEO-Campus Diversity Advisory Committee had its first meeting on October 5, 2015. Members include a diverse group of full-time and part-time faculty, administrators, and classified staff, as the district looks forward to developing a culture of inclusiveness at the college. The group discussed the committee’s purpose and their own experience and interest in being a part of the committee and brainstormed a name of change for the committee going forward. The committee will be known as Ohlone Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Committee (ODIAC). The committee will report to the President, provide quarterly updates to the President to discuss progress and ideas, and make recommendations.

In October 2015 the Human Resources Department held one of a series of workshops on cultural competence entitled “Valuing Diversity for Employees,” which was facilitated by the Employee Assistance Program. Some of the topics covered were dimensions of diversity, benefits and challenges of a diverse workplace, and skills to deal effectively with diversity in the workplace.

In Governor Brown’s January 2016 Budget Summary Ohlone shows as #3 in the top five statewide for the percentage of students enrolled in a mathematics course below transfer level who subsequently completed a college-level math course. Ohlone’s percentage is 46% compared to the statewide average of 31%, underscoring Ohlone’s ability to successfully transition students to college-level courses.

Community Outreach

The Tri-Cities One-Stop Career Corner kick-off hosted by the Fremont Adult and Continuing Education ESL Department was a huge success. Students, including about 200 from the ESL and Adult Basic Education classes, learned about the many services the One-Stop Career Center provides and about the new Career Corner Project. The project focuses on job search, housing, employment resources, and training. Students were given the opportunity to sign up for the project’s Career Corner counseling sessions.

Two groups of approximately 40 Newark Memorial High School students and their biology instructor toured the Newark campus during January 2016. These students are interested in the health fields of nursing, respiratory therapy, physical therapy, and kinesiology. The students were amazed at what they saw in the Health Science Simulation Lab. Many commented that they had no idea that Ohlone College, right across the street, had such a great campus and a variety of majors from which to select.

Ohlone welcomed over 100 local continuation high school students to the Newark campus during January 2016 for an open house event. For many of these local students this was their first time visiting a college campus. Ohlone Peer Mentors and Puente Program students worked in tandem with faculty, staff, and administrators to provide campus tours, complete Ohlone College applications, and inform these prospective students of the different programs and services that Ohlone has to offer.

College Events

The 31st Annual Ohlone College Golf Tournament was held on September 21, 2015 and was a great success, breaking all previous fundraising records. A sold-out field of 140 golfers braved 104-degree heat. Over 200 Ohlone administrators, staff, faculty, students, and some community members helped with the tournament. The event raised nearly $100,000 for the Renegade Athletics and other academic programs throughout the College.

Sixty middle school students visited Ohlone during Fall 2015 to take part in Career Exploration Week, a camp sponsored by Ohlone for Kids and Teens at the Newark campus. The program gives students in grades 6-8 an opportunity to explore degree and career programs in the high-demand, high tech fields that are relevant to our region. Students attended classes in one of three career pathways—Biotechnology, Engineering, or Web Development. These courses, taught by college faculty, allowed students to participate in lectures/discussions on the topic and to gain hands-on lab experience. Unique activities were presented in each of the career options.

Transfer Day 2015 was held on the Newark campus on September 29, 2015. Students had the opportunity to visit with representatives from different CSUs and UCs, as well in-state private schools and some out-of-state colleges. There were 45 baccalaureate universities participating, and over 800 students attended Transfer Day. Students and university representative alike had great feedback. Many of the representatives commented on how welcoming and accommodating everyone was, and how knowledgeable the students were about university admission, which speaks well of our college efforts.

Ohlone’s first Science Night, held on October 17, 2015 at the Newark campus, was an enormous success! Thanks to the incredibly hard work of Renee Gonzales, Student Life Coordinator, and former student Nabeel Naqvi, over 2700 students from our district K-12 schools, their parents, and other community members participated in an Exploratorium-style night with 30 hands-on exhibits, a panel of Ohlone STEM faculty experts, and keynote speaker, Planet Hunter Dr. Stephen Kane. The event was so much fun people were reluctant to leave, and they’re asking when the next Science Night will be.

The annual High School Counselor Conference was held in February 2016 on the Fremont campus. This event is an opportunity for local high school counselors and college specialists to learn more about the programs and services provided at Ohlone. Forty-one guests attended from all of the high schools in the district as well as from Hayward, Milpitas, Pleasanton, and Dublin, from both public and private schools. The attendees learned about Freshman Days, the Puente Program, Ohlone’s Transfer Center, academic and career programs, and Kindergarten-12th grade enrollment procedures. The Ohlone Promise scholarship opportunity was also highlighted and well received.

On April 30, 2016 the Newark campus hosted the 4th annual World Tai Chi and Qigong Day. Participation in the event was at an all-time high with 120 attendees from the Tri-city area.

On May 6, 2016 Ohlone held another successful “College for a Day, STE[A]M Day” at the Newark campus. Over 150 students from local middle and high schools were in attendance. Students enjoyed an animated coding demonstration of ALICE by Oracle, and visited classes in technology, engineering, biotechnology, computers and emerging technology, and multimedia. The last activity of the day was a demonstration by Ohlone Chemistry professor Dr. Maru Grant and Society for Advancement of Chicanos and Native Americans in Sciences (SACNAS), a student club.

(Source: Ohlone College Catalog, 2016-2017.)