Earning A’s: Faculty and staff activities, accomplishments, and accolades

This regular feature recognizes activities and honors of ACC faculty and staff. To submit news or suggestions, see the contact information below.

Sharing expertise

Seven faculty and staff and one trustee presented at the 2016 NISOD Conference May 28-31 in Austin. Their names and presentations:

Dr. Melissa Biegert, director, Early College High School, “A Texas Early College High Schools: Best Practices and Insights.”

Mark Butland, professor of communication studies, and Eli Mercer, adjunct professor of international business and entrepreneurship: “Taking FLITE: Next Generation Learning Paradigms to Increase Student Success.”

Executive Vice President and Provost Dr. Charles Cook and Trustee Nan McRaven: “Internationalizing Community Colleges: A Summit.”

Frank Cronin, professor of developmental writing, and Mark Butland: “You Build It: How to Pair Developmental and Gateway Courses.”

Courtney Mlinar, Elgin Campus head librarian and associate professor, and Tobin Quereau, professor of student development: “General Studies and Student Development Metacognition and NextGen Learning Models: Meeting Student Success and Engagement Goals through Online Information Literacy.”

Jason Newman in "Trevor."

Jason Newman in “Trevor.”

On stage

Marketing Copywriter Jason Newman stars in the Capital T Theatre’s production of “Trevor.” An Austin American-Statesman reviewer wrote that Newman gives a “tour-de-force” performance in the title role. The production continues at Hyde Park Theatre through June 18. Read reviews in the Statesman and the Austin Chronicle or view the Capital T Theatre website for details and ticket information.

Connecting Women in Higher Ed

As co-founder of #TXwHEART (Texas Women in Higher Education: Acting, Reflecting, Transforming), Student Life Coordinator Candice Brown helped organize the #TXwHEART Women in Higher Ed Unconference May 27 at Concordia University. The event brought together area higher education professionals for inspirational discussions and presentations.

Expanding knowledge

Ten faculty members received scholarships from the Faculty Center for Teaching & Learning to attend the 2016 Lilly Conference on Evidence-based Teaching and Learning in January. They are:

Samantha Ackers, adjunct associate professor of English
Ashley Carr, Highland Campus Librarian
Tasha Davis, associate professor of communication studies
Anne Fletcher, adjunct professor of developmental writing
Patricia Hatcher, associate professor of humanities
Nancy Johnson, adjunct, assistant professor of child care and development
Benny Ligues, adjunct assistant professor of heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration technology
Julia Maffei, adjunct associate professor of ESOL
Margaret O’Sullivan, professor of nursing
Kathryn Statos, adjunct associate professor of psychology

Participants have shared some of what they learned in entries on the FCTL’s Faculty Forum blog:
Ashley Carr: Two Big Ideas
Tasha Davis: When is the First Day of Class?
Anne Fletcher: An Awesome Experience at Lilly
Nancy Johnson: My Window
Benny Ligues: Importance of the Austin Lilly Conference 2016
Margaret O’Sullivan: Freshening Up My Classroom Game Plan

Check the blog regularly for new entries monthly. The FCTL is accepting applications for scholarships to attend the 2017 Lilly conference.


Virginia Fraire, Mike Midgley, KC Caliz, and Brandon Whatley with fellow team members.

Riverbat racers

KC Caliz, associate director of marketing, Dr. Virginia Fraire, vice president of student services, Mike Midgely, vice president of instruction, Dr. Richard Rhodes, president and CEO, and Brandon Whatley, interim dean of applied tech, multimedia, and public services, were part of a 12-person Austin Ragnar Relay team in April. The team ran in shifts for two days and one night, covering almost 180 miles between Fredericksburg and Austin.

Promoting ACC

Estrella Barrera, chair of the occupational therapy assistant program, in May discussed health professions on KVUE-TV. (Video unavailable).

Stacey Guney, director of the ACCelerator, promoted the April job fair hosted by the college at the Highland Campus on KXAN-TV. View the interview.

ACC Leadership Academy

The 2015-16 class of the ACC Leadership Academy marked completion of the program at a ceremony June 3. Participants were:

Jason Brown                Student Services
Adrianna Cardenas      Student Services
Jason Edens                 Student Assistance/Financial Aid
Roman Escamilla         Continuing Education
Jaime Guzman             Purchasing
Leah Jensen                 Instructional Resources & Technology
Farrah Keeler               ESOL
Sean Loraas                 Learning Labs
Courtney Mack            Learning Labs
Talisia McHugh            Student Services
James Merrifield          Assessment/Testing
Kathleen Park              Medical Laboratory Technology Program
James Peterson           Preventative Maintenance
Aaron Riethmayer       Campus management
Tammy Sharp              Human Resources
Porfirio Talamantez Jr. Student Services
Nelda Walker               Student Services
Mauri Winters              Student Life

Do you know a faculty or staff member who has accomplished something notable outside the classroom or in their community? We want to hear about them. Contact Jennifer Powers, [email protected].

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