ACC selects members of Futures Institute


Futures Institute members will explore options for adopting guided pathways at ACC. Not pictured: Josh Beach, Alison Judice.

Twenty-four faculty, staff, and students have been selected to participate in a new group that will examine ways to restructure college programs and services to better support students’ on-time degree or certificate completion.

The Futures Institute will explore options for grouping programs into broad “guided pathways” that are supported by services and activities designed to keep students on track to graduate. The group will develop a plan for implementing guided pathways in fall 2016.

“Guided pathways represent a logical extension of some of the student success initiatives we’ve adopted in recent years,” says Dr. Charles Cook, ACC executive vice president and provost. “Institute members will look at the entire student experience, from enrollment and onboarding through graduation and career services, to determine how we can best ensure students reach their academic or career goals.”

A growing number of colleges and universities are adopting guided pathways to increase completion rates: Nationally, fewer than 25 percent of full-time associate degree candidates graduate in three years, and fewer than 5 percent do so in two years, according to the nonprofit Complete College America. Those who do graduate often end up with credits they don’t need — on average up to a third more.

Guided pathways are intended to help steer students to the programs and coursework best suited to their goals and abilities while helping them avoid common setbacks.

Guided pathways are intended to help steer students to the programs and coursework best suited to their goals and abilities while helping them avoid common setbacks. The approach can involve limiting course choices, providing students with semester-by-semester plans and block scheduling, proactive or “intrusive” advising to catch potential problems, and using data to make informed decisions.

Futures Institute members were selected from more than 100 applicants and represent various college constituencies. They will spend the fall semester researching guided pathways models, gathering input internally and from other colleges considered to be national exemplars in the concept, and compiling their recommendations.

In the spring, members will work with administrators, faculty, and staff to convert their recommendations into a strategic, measureable plan for implementing guided pathways in fall 2016.

Futures Institute Members

Name Position Years at ACC
Teresa Ashley Librarian/Professor, Library Services 25
Estrella Barrera Department Chair and Professor of Occupational Therapy Assistant 10
Josh M. Beach Adjunct Professor of English 3
Nereida Celis Manager, Early College High School Program 8
Angie Diaz-Miranda De La Rosa Advising Specialist 10
Nicole Eversmann Student, Phi Theta Kappa College Project Manager
Allison Judice Student, President, Student Government Association
Deanna Johnson Professor of Developmental Writing 13
Rennison Lalgee Associate Professor of Sociology 8
Nancy Laudenslager Director of Continuing Education Workforce Development 4
Laura Lucas Instructional Design Specialist 5
Vanessa Malo Student Life First Year Services Coordinator 2.5
Catherine Mas Supplemental Instruction & Bridge Recruiter/Advisor 5
Stephanie P. Marquez Financial Aid Specialist 8
Don Morris Adjunct Professor of Hospitality Management Travel & Tourism 18
Rafael Eduardo Ochoa Advising Specialist 6
Matthew Pappas Adjunct Professor of Psychology 11
Giao Phan Department Chair and Professor of Education Instruction 8
Grant Hugh Potts Associate Professor of Philosophy & Religion 7
Christian Raymond Department Chair and Professor of Radio-Television-Film 4
Adam Rethlake Senior Computer Support Technician 16
Ruth Rodriguez Reinhart Associate Professor and Counselor 9
Kelly A. Stockstad Associate Professor of Speech 13
Eva Thomsen Associate Professor and Counselor 4.5

Futures Institute Advisory Committee

A Futures Institute advisory committee will work with and provide input to Futures Institute members. Advisory committee members are:

Nina Almasy, Associate Professor of Vocational Nursing
Tim Altanero, Professor, Foreign Languages
Ted Hadzi-Antich Jr., Assistant Professor of Government
Nagham Awadallah, Adjunct Professor of English and Journalism
Julie Cuellar Reck, Counselor/Assistant Professor of Student Development
Laura Bauman, Science Lab Technician
Rachel Barrera, Instructional Design Specialist
Marshall Bennett, Special Populations Specialist
Gene Browning, Instructional Associate, Learning Labs
Marissa Burill, Supervisor, Campus Financial Aid
Moises Cases, Adjunct Professor of Electronic and Advanced Technology
Barbara Chambers, Advising Specialist
Yolanda M. Chapa, Student Services Dean, South Austin
Mary Ann Cicala, Director of Alumni
Renee Esparza, Transfer Resources Coordinator
David Fretwell, Manager, Information Technology
Courtney Frost, Financial Aid Student Assistance Specialist
Anna Gann, Assistant Professor, ESOL
Eduardo Garcia, Counselor/Associate Professor
Stacey Guney, Director, ACCelerator
Patricia Hernandez, Supervisor, Adult Education Student Transitions and Success
Danny Igiehon-Fyzer, Student Accessibility Services Specialist
Jesse Jackson, Adjunct Professor of Speech
Brenda M. Johnson, Professor of Vocational Nursing
Carrie King,  Advising Specialist
Caroline K. Koo, Tutoring Specialist, Adjunct Associate Professor, ESOL
Joann Kroll, SACS Coordinator
Mark Leidig, Adjunct Professor of Health and Kinesiology
Wendy Lerner Lym, Professor of English
Bill Louden, Chair, International Business
Rachel McElroy, Resource Development, Grant Development & Compliance Officer
MaryJane McReynolds, Director, Articulation and Transfer Resources
Lea Melvin, Associate Professor of Nursing
Eli D. Mercer, Adjunct Professor of International Business
Glynis Miller, Registrar
Keelee Moseley, Information Technology Analyst, Senior Programmer
Kathleen Park, Associate Professor of Medical Laboratory Technology
Patsy Phillips, Supervisor, College Connection, Adjunct Professor of Developmental Math
Rachel Ruiz, Student Services Dean, Riverside
Lauren Sebel, Student Accessibility Services Coordinator
Kathleen Serra, Instructional Designer
Patti Singleton, Counselor/Professor
Gloria J. Sutton, Counselor/Professor
Don Tracy, Director, Continuing Education Business Operations & Marketing
Cathy Tremaria, Student Accessibility Services Coordinator
Vanessa Verstuyft, Supervisor, Campus Financial Aid, Student Assistance
Connie P. Williams, Manager, Highland Testing Center
Mirosalva Zuniga, Senior Administrative Assistant, Student Services

Futures Institute Planning Committee


(l-r): Soon Merz, Vice President of Effectiveness and Accountability; Susan Thomason, Director of Instructional Development Services; Missi Patterson, Professor; Assistant Dean of Faculty Development; Christina Michura, Manager, Faculty Development; Charles Cook, Executive Vice President and Provost; Mary Gilmer, Supervisor, Supplemental Instruction; Virginia Fraire, Vice President of Student Services; and Courtney Grams, Administrative Assistant III, Faculty Development. Not pictured: Mike Midgley, Vice President of Instruction; and Rachel Ruiz, dean of student services for Riverside Campus.


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