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NOvember 2007 - Highlights at a Glance


7th Annual Family Night


The balloon glow that took place at Family Night.

Arizona Western College’s 7th Annual Family Night Festival for education, food and fun took place on Thursday, November 15th.  Over 300 AWC staff, faculty and students volunteered their creativity and time to make this year's event such a success.

Carmen Faucon, Director of Career Development, described the event best: "Family Night, an evening of magic, is fueled by partnerships…partnering among faculty, staff, students and the community.  Attendance reaches into the thousands and the magic is a by-product.  At Family Night, learning is transparent, but real: student club members gain leadership skills through developing creative ways to raise money by selling food; a child experiences the value of education by observing a parent’s interaction with faculty; community partners build relationships that remove barriers to higher education. Through the enthusiastic spirit of service, Family Night’s magic connects academics and community in one fun, festive extravaganza." 

This year's Family Night had many exhibits that were judged by Paul Neuman, Vice President of Information Technology Services; Ruth Kuntzelman, Executive Director of AWC Foundation; and Ike Erb, Creative Director.  The judges selected the following exhibit winners:

First Place: "Family Fitnes Fun" exhibit that was organized by the AWC Physical and Wellness Education Department

Second Place: A Hands-on Pottery exhibit that was organized by Walter Ashenfelter, AWC Associate Faculty

Third Place: Petting Zoo exhibit that was organized by the Yuma High FFA that was led by Leigh Loughead, FFA Advisor

"Family Fitness Fun," the First Place exhibit, was a popular exhibit with the crowd.  When Shanen Aranmor, Director of Physical and Wellness Education, was asked what she thought made her department's exhibit such a success and a First Place winner she commented by saying, "We offered good, old-fashioned fun for all ages: three-legged races, a hula-hoop contest and push-ups on a fitball. Everyone who got active got a prize. We encouraged multiple generations to participate together; for example: mother and son in the three-legged race. Our philosophy was that everybody can move something so everyone can participate. To demonstrate this philosophy, a child on crutches could even hula-hoop... she spun it around her arms and then her neck! I think people had fun and laughed at themselves at our station. Some people really surprised themselves by discovering they could still hula-hoop after so many years!"

Facts about Family Night 2007:
-31 student clubs and sports participated, representing a 32% increase over 2006
-29 staff department and program booths, representing a 14% increase over 2006
-13 community exhibits, representing a 31% increase over 2006
-36,000 invitations were delivered to all elementary and middle schools within the county, ensuring that every child K - 8th grade received a personal invitation
-Community attendance was record breaking, at more than double previous attendance


Arizona Western College-Moving on to a More Positive Future

Arizona Western College President, Dr. Don Schoening recently appointed a Blue Ribbon Task Force (BRTF) with which he charged the responsibility of reviewing the new Learning Services Organizational Structure. The 22 member task force, co-chaired by a senior level faculty member and a senior level administrator, represents a broad variety of functional components from every major unit of the College District. The combined experience with and commitment to the College and the Yuma/La Paz County communities is exemplary.

At its initial meeting on Thursday, November 01, 2007, the BRTF received its charge for action from President Schoening as well as words of encouragement and commitment from Interim Vice-President of Learning Services, Dr. Joann Linville.

Task Force Charge from President Schoening:
“I am asking you as members of the college community to work cooperatively and collaboratively as a task force to assist co-chairs Kathy Watson and Graham Smart on the Blue Ribbon Task Force for the review of the Learning Services organizational structure. In carrying out this charge, we would expect a comprehensive plan of action for the enhancement and improvement of our level of service to all consumers involved including students, faculty and administration.”

As per the President’s charge, the BRTF will focus on the following actions:
• Assess the structure and functionality of the Learning Services organizational structure
Develop recommendations and relevant modifications for the Learning Services organizational structure
• Gain district wide input to increase system wide ownership
• Work within the fiscal constraints of the 2007-2008 budget
• Assess the feasibility of implementing short term modifications as the task force activities progress
• Deliver recommendations to the Vice President of Learning Services by Thursday, February 21, 2008. Co-chairs are expected to present the task force’s initial recommendations to the AWC Executive Committee by March 31, 2008.”

To assist and complement the BRTF with its charge, the College has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for an Organizational Consultant; however the Task Force is proceeding with its assessment of the “newly” implemented structure to ascertain if there are some “quick fix” items of functional areas that, upon the approval of the College’s Executive Committee, can be addressed immediately. The premise is that any of these items or functions will serve to restore communications and a positive College climate while positively enhancing the services to our students.

Although there is considerable urgency with many of the expressed concerns, President Schoening voiced his desire that the BRTF appreciate and respect the importance of the charge.

The results of its first meeting and brainstorming session reveals the production of a list of some 15 major topics, many with multiple subsets. Each will be addressed with recommendations being developed. These items can be reviewed internally at an online site. Additionally, BRTF Members are encouraged to share any and all information with their colleagues and to present the information at their respective School and Community meetings. The open dialog and sharing of both concerns and solutions will lead us toward the dynamically positive environment and climate to which we have become accustomed at AWC.

Bryan Doak Appointed Interim Vice President of Student Services


Bryan Doak, Interim Vice President of Student Services

Following the assignment of Dr. Joann Linville as the interim Vice President of Learning Services, Dr. Don Schoening has appointed the College’s Dean of Enrollment Services Bryan Doak as the Interim Vice President of Student Services until Dr. Linville returns to her original post.

“Bryan Doak has demonstrated significant leadership throughout the campus community and at the state level. He is a collaborative, cooperative administrator with a broad range of student services experience. Bryan has the experience and ability to be effective as Interim Vice President,” commented Dr. Schoening, Arizona Western College President.

With over 20 years of community college leadership experience, Mr. Doak brings to this interim assignment a high level of administrative expertise and team management in admissions and registration, recruitment and outreach, academic advising, veterans services and military programs, as well as campus safety. Mr. Doak joined Arizona Western College in May of 2001 as the Director of Admissions and Registrar and served as the Associate Dean of Enrollment Services until 2005. In his current position as the Dean of Enrollment Services, Mr. Doak manages five key areas that make up much of the leadership in Student Services, to include financial aid, admissions and registration, international student programs, testing services and recruitment and outreach.

In addition to his main responsibilities, Mr. Doak also provides critical leadership in several other key areas at Arizona Western College. He currently serves as the co-chair of the College’s 2009 self-study process with the Higher Learning Commission. This entails a three-year in-depth study of the institution in order to maintain the College’s accreditation status. Mr. Doak also co-chairs the Strategic Enrollment Management Committee (SEMC) which has the mission of guiding, facilitating, and planning long-term enrollment growth to sustain the Arizona Western College mission. Within the Arizona higher education system, Mr. Doak also provided significant leadership as the 2006-07 President of the Arizona Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AZACRAO).

When asked what his goals are as the Interim Vice President of Student Services, Mr. Doak commented, “During this interim assignment, my goal is to continue the strong leadership and direction that Dr. Linville has established. It’s a great honor to be asked to serve as the Interim Vice President of Student Services and I’m looking forward to this opportunity.”

AWC Foundation Donates Tractor to the College's Agriculture Program


Front row (left to right): Dennis Booth, CEO of Booth Machinery, Inc.; Dave Egeberg, President of AWC Foundation; Ruth Whisler-Kuntzelman, Executive Director of AWC Foundation; Jim Williams, Professor of Agricultural Sciences; Dr. Don Schoening, President of AWC; and Amy Gill, Sturges Charitable Trust Administrator. Back Row (left to right): Brian Novotny, AWC Student; Dr. Ian Watkinson, Professor of Agricultural Sciences; and German Salido, AWC Student.

The Arizona Western College Foundation is pleased to announce the donation of a 2005 Case IH JX1100U tractor to the AWC Agriculture Program.

A few months ago, Dr. Ian Watkinson, Professor of Agriculture, approached the AWC Foundation with a proposal for funds to enhance the Ag program needs. Ruth Whisler-Kuntzelman, Executive Director of the AWC Foundation, reviewed the proposal and presented it to the Sturges Charitable Trust Board last fall.

The Sturges Charitable Trust Board awarded $30,000.00 to the AWC Foundation for the purchase of a tractor for use by the AWC Agriculture program.

The winning bid was provided by Booth Machinery and the tractor is now happily in residence at its new home in the AWC Ag program.

The Arizona Western College Foundation thanks the Sturges Charitable Trust, Dr. Ian Watkinson, and Booth Machinery for their work to make this dream a reality.

Dr. Solomon Visits AWC Campus Community


Karen Solomon, Director for Accreditation Services of the Higher Learning Commission of the NCA of Colleges and Schools



Dr. Karen Solomon, the Assistant Director for Accreditation Services of the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, visited Arizona Western College on November 14th and 15th.  While on campus, she assessed the progress of the self-study and made special presentations to the AWC campus community to share perspectives and ideas about the College's upcoming March 2009 accreditation site visit.


 58th ASSRT Statewide Midyear Conference Held in Yuma


From left to right: Jim Hall FACHE, Vice President of Professional and Support Services at YRMC; Victoria Holas, Director of Radiology Technology Program; and Marcus Johnson, Dean of Career and Technical Education.

Through an exciting partnership between the Arizona State Society of Radiologic Technologists (ASSRT), Arizona Western College (AWC), the Yuma Convention and Visitor’s Bureau (YCVB) and Yuma Regional Medical Center (YRMC), the 58th ASSRT Statewide Midyear Conference was held in Yuma, Arizona on November 9-10, 2007.  ASSRT is a state organization charged with advancing the professions of medical radiation and imaging specialties, assisting in establishing and maintaining high standards of education and training, elevating the quality of patient care, and furthering the welfare and socioeconomic status of radiologic technologists.

The conference was opened up with a welcome by Amanda Aguirre, State Senator, and Jim Hall FACHE, Vice President of Professional and Support Services at YRMC. Marcus Johnson, Dean of Career and Technical Education at AWC, was the Keynote Speaker at the conference. 

During this conference, radiologic technologists from around the state of Arizona and Southern California participated in a variety of professional development seminars to earn up to 7.5 Continuing Education Units (CEU’s) credits. In order to maintain national registration as a Radiologic Technologist, one must earn 24 CEU’s every two years. Between 60-100 professionals will participate in this conference. Victoria Holas, Director of Radiology Technology Program at AWC, and Brenda Skorup, AWC Associate Faculty Member, both presented seminars at the conference.

There were two tracks available for these professionals: general and mammography. As part of the general track, a Digital Radiology Q&A and Forensic Anthropology were a few of the seminars available. During the mammography track, workshops included Tips for Mammography Positioning, Whole Body DXA Scanning with BCA, Advances in Early Stage Breast Cancer, and Integrating Ultrasound and Mammography.

The conference was a success due to a lot of hard work put in by the following committee members: Victoria Holas, Co-Chair of the Committee; Marty Schotten, Co-Chair of the Committee; Ashley Bowen, Clinical Coordinator Rad Tech Program; Lena Haygood, Associate Faculty; Rita Maykel, Associate Faculty; Eldon Dyer, Associate Faculty; Brenda Skorup, Associate Faculty; and Mark Hannah, YRMC.

AWC Nursing Students and Faculty Volunteer at Flu Clinic


AWC nursing students volunteer their time at the flu clinic.

The annual Yuma County Health Department flu clinic at the Civic Center was held on November 2nd. More than 40 nursing students, supervised by nursing faculty, volunteered their time this year at the flu clinic.









Native Healer and Author Gave Two Presentations at AWC


Kenneth "Bear Hawk" Cohen, Traditional Healer and Author 

Kenneth “Bear Hawk” Cohen, who is a traditional healer and author of “Honoring the Medicine” gave two free presentations on Tuesday, November 20th in the AWC Theater.  The event was co-sponsored by the AWC Massage Therapy Program, AWC Student Services, and AWC Office of Diversity.

Ken "Bear Hawk" Cohen author of the critically acclaimed classic, Honoring the Medicine: The Essential Guide to Native American Healing (Random House, 2003), is a health educator, a traditional healer, and scholar of indigenous medicine. He is the recipient of the 2003 Elmer and Alyce Green Award for Innovation in Energy Medicine. Although best known for his pioneering work in Chinese healing arts (qigong), he has followed the "red road" of Native American wisdom as his personal spiritual path for thirty years.

Of Russian Jewish ancestry, Bear Hawk is an adopted member of a Cree family from Sturgeon Lake First Nation in Canada and teaches with the blessings and support of traditional elders of many Nations. He is an initiate of the Red Cedar Circle (Si.Si.Wiss Medicine) and various medicine societies. Bear Hawk was an apprentice to Cherokee spiritual teacher Keetoowah Christie, from 1977-87. He also trained with elders from the Northeast, Northwest, and Northern Plains. In his quest for the common root of healing, Bear Hawk was initiated into Filipino oracion, prayer healing and psychic surgery, after a five year course of study. He studied African medicine with the Zulu shaman, Ingwe, in the lineage of the Holy Man, Vusamazulu Credo Mutwa, and is a keeper of the sacred "bones" used in divination. Bear Hawk was one of four North American students of a master healer of the Igbo Tribe, Nigeria and is fully trained as an Igbo priest/shaman (dibia).

He demonstrated his healing abilities as one of nine "exceptional healers" studied by the Menninger Institute. He is a popular speaker at scientific, healing, and theological conferences. Bear Hawk's lectures have been sponsored by the National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine, the American Cancer Society, the International Society for the Study of Subtle Energies and Energy Medicine, the World Congress on Energy Medicine, the Canadian Ministry of Health, and numerous universities. In addition to writing Honoring the Medicine, Bear Hawk is the author of "Native American Medicine" in Essentials of Complementary and Alternative Medicine. This was the first work on Native American medicine to be included in a U.S. medical school textbook. He is also the author of Native Wisdom: 7 Keys to Health and Happiness (Sounds True, audio CD) and more than 200 journal articles on health and spirituality. 

AWC Institute of Welding Assists with Signage


Sam Colton, Professor of Welding/Coordinator of Technical Instructional Department stands with his students who assisted the AWC SBDC with some signage.

The Arizona Western College Institute of Welding Design and Fabrication course was asked to assist the AWC Small Business Development Service (SBDC) with some signage. The signage would be used to help direct SBDC customers to the entrance of the AWC Entrepreneurial Center that is located on Rodondo Drive.

After meeting with Randy Nelson, Director of SBDC, the design called for a water jet cut sign stencil in brushed aluminum with a satin black metal background and frame that could be freestanding. The AWC Institute of Welding worked with Ike Erb, the College’s Creative Director, on the AWC logo and lettering. The logo was then formatted and exported to the F.I.R.M., which is a local company owned by Jesse Oropeza, an AWC welding alumnus. Oropeza’s company has a $300,000.00 robotic water jet cutting machine that was used to provide the aluminum cut out. The cut out was then sent back to the AWC Institute of Welding where they cut, welded, painted and the aluminum cut outs were applied.

AWC Institute of Welding Technology would like to thank Mr. Randy Nelson for allowing the students an opportunity to put what they are learning at college into practice. 



Angie Creel-Erb, Director of Library Services at AWC and President of AzLA

Angie Creel-Erb
This November, Director of Library Services at Arizona Western College, Angie Creel-Erb began her year serving as Arizona Library Association’s President. Angie has served this past year as the President-Elect and will follow this year with a one year term as Past-President.

The Arizona Library Association is an organization comprised of librarians and library professionals from across the state of Arizona. AzLA began in 1926 in response to a need for a strong association of librarians to improve Arizona libraries. Since its establishment, the mission of AzLA has been to promote and improve library service and librarianship in Arizona.

Angie’s term duties will include offering a Leadership camp to new incoming officers and holding Library Legislative Day with Arizona legislators at the state Capitol in Phoenix. She will also spend time promoting library initiatives at the National Legislative Day in Washington DC and be heavily involved in the AzLA annual conference, which brings 800-1000 library professionals together from all areas of the state.  

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