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College of Marin
President’s Weekly Briefing — January 16, 2014
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In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, campuses will be closed Monday, January 20.

21st Century Leadership: Preparing Students for Global Citizenship

So here we are at the beginning of a new year. I think many of us take stock this time of year, personally or professionally, assessing where we currently find ourselves and where perhaps we’d like to see ourselves in the future. As I step back and reflect on College of Marin’s rich history, I can’t help but be optimistic and enthused about the possibilities of our future together.

In December, I celebrated my third anniversary at College of Marin. Throughout the first three years, various people asked me about my vision for the College. My response, more often than not, was that I believed it was my responsibility to ensure the College’s best days are ahead. While somewhat non-committal, I believe it naturally takes some time for there to be clarity in a vision. As we begin 2014, these nearly 50-year-old eyes are seeing clearer than ever!

There are plenty of things that we probably can’t be for this reason or that reason. I’d prefer to focus on the possibilities. Of all that I believe we can be, I know we can be a leader in 21st century teaching and learning. How do I know this? I know this because of you. You are the brightest, most talented faculty, staff, and administrators that I have worked with anywhere. You are committed to what’s most important—the success of our students and the assurance that their futures are rich with options and possibilities.

I am very proud of the fact that our intellectual community has grown over the last couple years. By the end of this academic year we will have hired 45 new full-time faculty across disciplines. While we all play an important role here at the college, it’s the faculty who play that extra special role in teaching and learning.

Let me let you in on a bit of a trade secret, or at least one of my trade secrets. When interviewed, each of the faculty candidates was asked what 21st century teaching and learning looks like for a sociologist, political scientist, librarian, counselor, etc. I can assure you that the individuals who are among us, got it.

Being a leader in 21st century teaching and learning is multi-faceted. One of the primary ways in which we can ensure the College is a leader in 21st teaching and learning is by preparing our students to be global citizens. It’s as simple as this: unless we prepare our students, the leaders of tomorrow, to be global citizens, how can we expect them to be prepared to join with the other future leaders across the lands and seas in solving the complex problems challenging the world we live in?

So what do I mean by preparing students to be global citizens? I’m suggesting a multi-faceted approach here as well.

1. For those students who don’t speak English, we should further promote English language acquisition. Here at College of Marin we have an Intensive English Program; Non-Credit Instruction in English as a Second Language and Credit Instruction in English as a Second Language.

2. For students who speak English, we should further promote the acquisition of a second or perhaps third language. Here at College of Marin we offer instruction in modern languages, including American Sign Language, French, Italian, Japanese and Spanish.

3. We should also further promote many of the History, Humanities, Ethnic Studies, Political Science, Sociology and Speech courses we have here at the College of Marin. For instance, did you know we offer such courses as:

HUM 242 – Global Writings
ETST 242 – History & Politics of Contemporary Africa
HIST 212 – History & Politics of Modern China
POLS 201 – Understanding Globalization
SOC 214 – Global Social Problems
SPCH 128 – Intercultural Communications

I’m certainly not suggesting that the responsibility for preparing students to be global citizens rests with the faculty who teach the courses I just mentioned—to the contrary.
4. I maintain that we have the obligation to infuse global concepts across the curriculum. I really can’t think of a discipline where global concepts couldn’t be infused into the curriculum. While offering courses with a focus on globalization and courses with global concepts infused across the curriculum goes a long way toward preparing students to be global citizens, there really isn’t a replacement for students experiencing another culture firsthand.

5. For this reason, we must provide students with opportunities for cultural exchange and study abroad. One of the values of having international students attend College of Marin is that they expose us to other cultures and other ways of looking at the world. This semester we will have approximately 100 international students enrolled at COM representing over 30 different countries.

If I have but one regret about my own undergraduate experience, it would be that I didn’t study abroad.

6. At the same time we are offering such opportunities for students, we should also be providing faculty and staff with opportunities for cultural exchanges for the purpose of sharing best practices in pedagogy and curriculum development.

Last week, Dr. Jason Lau, Director of Community Education, Lifelong Learning, and International Education; Nanda Schorske, Executive Dean of IVC and Workforce and Economic Development; and I returned from Beijing, China. We were invited to Beijing to visit Fengtai Vocational High School, which has approximately 5,000 students enrolled on 11 campuses across Beijing. Fengtai is one of the government-sponsored schools in China participating in the National Development and Reform Project. Fengtai is very interested in developing meaningful ties to colleges and universities in the United States. Who better than the College of Marin?

The purpose of our trip was exploratory, which is how these things usually unfold. We explored where there might be synergies and where there might be opportunities for collaboration. And, like any relationship, it’s also about finding the right “chemistry.” Do we have complimentary missions, shared values, mutual respect, and the best interests of students in mind?

We were pleasantly surprised by the number of potentially synergistic opportunities that emerged from our time with the Fengtai administration, faculty, and students. To name just a few, we noted intensive English studies, automotive technology, early childhood education, multimedia animation, music, and dance.

While we made no formal commitments with Fengtai while in Beijing, we did commit to exploring the development of:

  • ESL and IEP
  • 1+1 joint academic and vocational programs
  • Online distance learning
  • International student recruitment
  • Curricular practical training and optional practical training
  • Student and faculty exchanges, and
  • Opportunities for cross-cultural research and collaboration.

I am very pleased to share with you that we do have one tangible outcome to report. Fengtai is interested in contracting with College of Marin for the purpose of assisting in the development of an Intensive English Program modeled after our own program. Fengtai’s IEP program would be offered on one of their campuses in Beijing with the idea of accelerating students’ opportunity to learn English and then enroll at College of Marin.

All of this is very exciting. I will be asking Dr. Lau and Dean Schorske to host a brown bag lunch in the near future to share more our venture and the possibilities of this new collaborative.

Happy New Year to all of you!


The Community College League of California 2013 Annual Convention at the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco last month was an outstanding success, in part due to the tremendous contribution of many creative people at College of Marin. Nearly 650 people attended some portion of the convention and feedback has been overwhelmingly positive.

College of Marin Music Instructor Bob Schleeter played guitar with local keyboardist Richard Leiter in a ReBop Jazz Combo for the Board of Governors reception on Thursday night and Chancellor Brice Harris loved the music. The next day, College of Marin Dance Department wowed attendees at the Gala Reception on Friday night with a performance of Let the Groove In, a production choreographed by Instructor David Alonzo Jones and performed by College of Marin Dance Company members: Jorge Alfonso, Christine McCann, Cherrell Banks, Priscilla Boutineau, Heather Fox, Jennifer Gotti, Rachael Murray, Kellyrose Robinson, and Lisa Thompson. Thanks also to Cathy Summa-Wolfe, executive director, communications, community relations, and advancement, for her help coordinating COM activities at the convention.

New Internet-Based Rideshare Program

For many years we have been encouraging students, faculty and staff to consider carpooling and alternate modes of transportation. A new web-based application, Carma (formerly known as Avego) is the most recent, exciting opportunity to help us change the way we all get to and from campus. The real-time ride-sharing program, uses GPS, and Web and mobile technologies to let users know where and when vehicles with room for passengers can drive others. It has been successfully introduced at other campuses such as the Santa Rosa Junior College. The Carma application provides users with real-time seat capacity to catch a ride in their neighborhoods. Its success will depend on the number of people to sign up so check out the iPhone and Android-friendly application and make 2014 the year you lower your carbon footprint.

January 2014 Data Nugget: The Second Largest Demographic on Campus

Question: Which age group below comprised the second largest percentage of students enrolled in College of Marin for fall 2013, fall 2012, fall 2011, fall 2010, fall 2009 and fall 2008?
Younger than 21 years old
(A) 21-24 years old
(B) 25-34 years old
(C) 35-44 years old
(D) 45-54 years old
(E) 55+ years

Answer: C
Source: College of Marin Enrollment Report Fall 2013, September 17, 2013

Honoring Marshall Northcott

Marshall’s passing last year was unexpected to many in the college community and support for a way to honor his memory has been expressed by college employees. As a tribute to the contributions made to College by Marshall during his time as Director of Information Technology, staff are raising funds for the purchase and installation of two memorial benches. The goal is to raise the $4,000 necessary to purchase and install the benches by the end of the spring 2014 semester. One bench will be installed at the Kentfield Campus under the Redwood Grove facing Mt. Tam and the Science Math Nursing Building. The second bench will be installed at the Indian Valley Campus.

How to Donate:
Checks should be made payable to Marin Community College District, noting Marshall Memorial Bench in the memo line.
Place in Cathy Summa-Wolfe’s box in the KTD mailroom or mail to: Advancement Office, 835 College Avenue, Kentfield, CA 94904.
Or, donate online: Under Donation Selection, select Other. Please type Marshall Memorial Bench at the provided area.

For more information contact Shook Chung, Nicole Cruz, or Kathy Joyner.

Upcoming Events

Celebrating an Artist: Agathe Bennich, Selected Works

You are invited to experience the current exhibit in the Fine Arts Gallery featuring the work of Agathe Bennich whose work has been shown extensively nationally and internationally. Born in Sweden, Bennich (1939–2012) lived in France, Austria, Italy and Mexico before settling in San Francisco. She attended San Francisco Art Institute where she earned a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in fine arts. Her investigation into painting began while living in Italy in the early ’60s. The arc of her early work evolved from the painted exploration of the Italian and Mexican landscapes to complex shaped canvases driven by meditations on the human condition, a theme that would recur later in her work. Bennich pursued an intense, psychological form of portrait painting and, in 1995, she moved to Wales to immerse herself in her process as a painter. It was a period of immense growth for her work. In addition to the exhibit, there will be an in memoriam gathering on Friday, January 24.
Exhibit: Weekdays through Friday, February 7, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Gallery Hours: Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
In Memoriam Gathering: Friday, January 24, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
College of Marin Fine Arts Gallery
Kentfield Campus
Free admission. Donations welcome.

Board of Trustees Meeting

Board of Trustees meeting information from previous meetings is available online. You can also watch the meetings online at The next meeting regular Board meeting is:

Tuesday, January 21, 6:30 p.m.
Student Services Building, Cafeteria
Kentfield Campus

The Groundwork of Organic Gardening: Establishing a Productive Garden

This three-Saturday organic gardening workshop series is designed for beginning and seasoned growers alike. Each session includes classroom instruction and practical teaching at the certified Indian Valley Organic Farm & Garden at the College of Marin Indian Valley Campus, a partnership program with the Marin Master Gardeners. The February workshop, with instructor Jeff Creque, will cover the principles and practices of organic soil cultivation with a focus on the physical and biological properties of soil. The May 17 workshop, with instructor Wendy Johnson, covers soil mixes, seasonal planting schedules, irrigation, pest management and disease control and harvesting. The October workshop, with instructor Liza Buckner, will include discussion about annual winter gardens, harvesting cultivated and native plant seed, dividing and propagating perennials and establishing a sound winter composting system. Participants may register for individual sessions or for the full series. Class size is limited to 35 participants. You may register online.

Saturdays, February 1, May 17, October 4, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Indian Valley Organic Farm and Garden
Indian Valley Campus
$30 per class (or $75 for the series when you register for all three at once)

Weekend parking is free.

For more information, contact Liz Peer.

Fair Accreditation and the Struggle at City College of San Francisco

A City College of San Francsico trustee, instructor and student will be on campus to talk about the ongoing accreditation problem that has affected their college and what this means for community colleges throughout California. The event is sponsored by United Professors of Marin and the Academic Senate.

Thursday, February 6, 2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Deedy Staff Lounge, Student Services Building
Kentfield Campus

In Search of My Father...Walkin’ Talkin’ Bill Hawkins

College of Marin Drama Professor W. Allen Taylor is bringing his 90-minute award-winning solo show back to the stage for a special fundraising event honoring the 50th anniversary of the College Drama Department. Winner of the Best Solo Performance of 2006 by the San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle, the show explores the intimate story of Taylor’s life-long search for his father, Bill Hawkins, the first black disc jockey in Cleveland, Ohio. Taylor portrays several characters in a bittersweet journey of self-discovery. He celebrates the rich cultural legacy of black radio with rhythm and blues, gospel, and jazz music serving as a rich backdrop. For more information is available online or call the Drama Department at (415) 485-9555.

Thursday, February 6, 8 p.m.
Friday, February 7 and Saturday, February 8, 8 p.m.
Sunday, February 9, 2 p.m.
Suggested donation for preview performance on February 6 is $10.
Suggested donation for all other performances is $25.
Studio Theatre
Kentfield Campus (Corner of Sir Francis Drake Boulevard and Laurel Avenue)

Advance reservations may be made by calling the Drama Department at (415) 485-9555. Any unclaimed reservations will be released 15 minutes prior to the performance. On the day of the show, unreserved seats will be available at the door 45 minutes prior to the performance. Donations may be made by cash, check, or charge.

Proceeds benefit the Drama Department.

Ongoing Events

Conversation Partners Program

Practice your language skills and meet our interesting global students through the Conversation Partners Program, which matches individuals for informal language exchange. Faculty and staff are invited to consider participating in this innovative program developed by the International Education Office. It’s a wonderful way to promote international friendship and cross-cultural understanding while practicing a language that interests you. You may sign up online any time. For more information, contact Rebecca Freeland, program coordinator, at ext. 7740.

Free and Low Cost Flu Shots

Flu season is here and will most likely continue for several weeks. If you are sick, stay home! If you haven’t gotten your flu vaccination yet this season, you should get one now. Our supply is currently reserved for faculty, staff, and students only. If you can get a flu shot from your primary care provider, please do so. Flu shots for faculty and staff are $10, and are free for students. Supplies are limited. Please drop the Health Centers, located in the portable in parking lot 6 on the Kentfield Campus and AS 121 at the Indian Valley Campus, or call for our hours. To schedule an appointment, call (415) 485-9458. You must be 18 years old to obtain the flu vaccination from the Health Center. We are not a Medicare provider and do not bill insurances.


Bay Valley Conference Tournaments
Men’s Basketball vs. Alameda
Wednesday, January 22, 7:30 p.m. in Kentfield
Men’s Basketball vs. Napa
Friday, January 24, 7:30 p.m. in Napa
Men’s Basketball vs. Mendocino
Wednesday, January 29, 7:30 p.m. in Kentfield
Men’s Basketball vs. Los Medanos
Friday, January 31, 7:30 p.m. in Pittsburg
Bay Valley Conference Tournaments
Women’s Basketball vs. Contra Costa
Thursday, January 16, 5:30 p.m. in San Pablo
Women’s Basketball vs. Yuba
Saturday, January 18, 5:30 p.m. in Kentfield
Women’s Basketball vs. Laney
Wednesday, January 22, 5:30 p.m. in Kentfield
Women’s Basketball vs. Napa
Friday, January 24, 5:30 p.m. in Napa
Women’s Basketball vs. Mendocino
Wednesday, January 29, 5:30 p.m. in Kentfield
Women’s Basketball vs. Los Medanos
Friday, January 31, 5:30 p.m. in Pittsburgh
Men’s Baseball vs. San Mateo
Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2 p.m., TBA
Men’s Baseball vs. Hartnell
Friday, Jan. 31, 2 p.m. in Kentfield

Submissions to the Weekly Briefing

Please submit information no later than Friday for the following week. Submissions received later than Friday will be included in the next week’s edition.

Welcome back,

David Wain Coon, Ed.D.


President's Weekly Briefing Web Page
Technical Contact: Nicole Cruz, Administrative Assistant to the Executive Director of Communications, Community Relations, and Advancement, (415) 485-9648
Content Responsible: Cathy Summa-Wolfe, Executive Director, Communications, Community Relations, and Advancement, (415) 485-9528