For more information about any of the press releases contact:
- Jennifer Stoner, executive director of communications and marketing, (708) 709-3949
- Andrea Small, communications specialist, (708) 709-2948
LT. GOV. SIMON TELLS PRAIRIE STATE GRADUATES THEY WILL REAP THE BENEFITS OF THEIR EDUCATION
[Released 05/21/2013] Addressing a packed house of Prairie State College (PSC) graduates, family, and friends on Saturday, May 18, 2013, Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon thanked all the graduates for investing in themselves and assured them they would reap the benefits of their education. She also recognized the role families, friends, and professors played in helping the graduates achieve their educational goals. The 54th commencement ceremony was held at the Pioneer Fieldhouse, located at the main campus of the college in Chicago Heights, Ill.
During her term, Simon has been the leading voice on education for the state. She emphasized the state’s goal of increasing to 60 percent by 2025 the number of Illinois residents holding certificates and degrees, up from 41 percent today.
“A better educated state workforce benefits everyone. I appreciate the value of an education,” she said.
She also extolled the virtues of the Illinois Community College System, “I know what open admission means and how it opens the door to education for so many Illinois residents.”
Prior to the commencement, Simon had interviewed five PSC graduates, using their stories to illustrate the college’s five core values: teaching and learning, community, diversity, excellence, and caring and concern.
Garrett J. McAlister, a president leadership award recipient and an associate of arts degree graduate, represented teaching and learning. He told the Lt. Governor that Prairie State had offered him a million opportunities to learn and grow as a senator of student government and by being a member of numerous campus clubs and organizations.
Erin Tomlinson, a high school dropout who returned to school for a GED and graduated Saturday with an associate degree, represented the core value of community. Her catalyst for continuing her education was a PSC scholarship that Tomlinson said, “changed her life.”
The core value of diversity was represented by Barry Rogers, a non-traditional student whose passion for information technology led him to PSC and will take him to Arizona State University for his bachelor’s degree.
Addison Jackson, Jr., president leadership award recipient, exiting student government president, disabled veteran, and father of three girls, represented the core value of excellence. During his tenure at PSC he was both the voice of the student and the voice of experience. Jackson will be pursuing a bachelor’s degree in social work.
Representing caring and concern was Francine Poindexter. Graduating with her associate in applied science degree in nursing, her education story also started with obtaining her GED and enlisted in the U.S. Army. While a student at PSC she served as President of the Veteran’s Club during the spring 2012 semester. Her plan is to continue pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing.
“You should all be proud of your own story. You also should be proud that you will earn $1 million more during your lifetime than if you had stopped your education at a high school degree,” Simon said.
More than 400 students graduated from PSC with associate degrees and certificates this year, and approximately 275 graduates participated in the ceremony.
As Illinois’ 46th lieutenant governor, Simon has served alongside Gov. Pat Quinn since January 2011. She is the second highest executive officer in Illinois, and her mission is to make government more accountable, accessible, and transparent for the people of Illinois. She acts as the governor’s point person on education reform, and is leading efforts to increase college completion, inspire ethical government, and protect our military bases, rural areas, and waterways.
TWO PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE GRADUATES NAMED JACK KENT COOKE SCHOLARS
[Released 05/21/2013] Prairie State College (PSC) graduates Nandjui-Yannick R. Koutouan of Chicago and Cecilia Reyes of Chicago Heights both were named recipients of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship for 2013. They are two of only 73 graduating community college students selected from the 1200 community colleges in the United States to receive the prestigious award this year. Both Koutouan and Reyes received their associate degrees from PSC during the May 18 commencement ceremonies.
The Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship honors excellence by supporting outstanding community college students with financial need to transfer to and complete their bachelor’s degrees at the nation’s top four-year colleges and universities.
In addition to the Jack Kent Cook scholarship, Koutouan was the Student Government Association representative of the Nu Sigma Chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, and recently was named to the 2013 Illinois All-Academic Team for his academic excellence. He also was named a 2013 Coca-Cola Community College Academic Team Bronze Scholar. Koutauan has served on the Service and Membership Committees for Phi Theta Kappa. He worked as a tutor and Peer-Led Team Learning Workshop leader for the STEM@PSC program. Koutauan also is a 2012 NASA National Community College Aerospace scholar and 2012 Illinois Community College Faculty Association Scholarship recipient. He graduated PSC summa cum laude with an Associate in Science degree in pre-engineering. He plans to attend Kettering University in the fall, majoring in computer engineering.
Reyes was the vice president of the Nu Sigma Chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, and recently was named to the 2013 Illinois All-Academic Team for her academic excellence. She also has served on the Scholarship and Fundraising Committees for Phi Theta Kappa. Reyes also worked as a Peer-Led Team Learning Workshop leader for the STEM@PSC program. She also is a One Million Degree Scholar and a 2012 Behavioral Research Advancements in Neuroscience (BRAIN) fellow at the Neuroscience Institute in Atlanta, Ga. Reyes graduated PSC summa cum laude with an Associate in Science degree in pre-medicine. She plans to continue to study biology/pre-medicine.
PSC FOUNDATION HOSTING ANNUAL GOLF OUTING FUNDRAISER
[Released 05/20/2013] The Prairie State College (PSC) Foundation is hosting the 20th annual golf outing, Monday, June 3, at the Idlewild Country Club, located at 19201 Dixie Highway in Flossmoor. All proceeds support student scholarships. The foundation awards more than $100,000 annually in scholarships to PSC students.
The day begins at 11 a.m. with lunch and driving range warm-ups, followed by an 18- hole scramble with a 12:30 p.m. shotgun start. Contests and prizes are set up throughout the course.
The event concludes with an awards reception, live auction, and cocktails at 5:30 p.m. followed by a buffet dinner at 6 p.m.
For more information on the golf outing or sponsorship opportunities, contact Cathy Killian Kloss, executive director of the PSC Foundation, at (708) 709-3636. Information is also available on the PSC Web site at prairiestate.edu/foundation.
PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE GRADS GO GREEN WITH ECO-FRIENDLY CAPS AND GOWNS
[Released 05/13/2013] The 2013 graduating class will be the first at Prairie State College (PSC) to walk down the aisle in eco-friendly caps and gowns when the college holds its 54th commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 18.
Each graduation gown is made from approximately 29 post-consumer plastic bottles, and the more than 275 graduation gowns at the PSC commencement will contribute to saving more than 7 million post-consumer bottles this year.
"This reaffirms to the community that we are producing environmentally, fiscally, and socially responsible grads," said Allessandra Cairo, sustainability coordinator at PSC. "The administration's approval of this year's eco-friendly graduation attire is just one more opportunity for us to demonstrate the college's commitment to sustainability."
ILLINOIS LT. GOV. SHEILA SIMON TO ADDRESS GRADUATES AT MAY 18 PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE COMMENCEMENT CEREMONY
[Released 05/13/2013] Illinois Lt. Gov. Sheila Simon will address the Prairie State College graduates and their guests at the 54th annual commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 18. The ceremony is being held at 11 a.m. at the St. James Health and Wellness Institute at 100 197th Place in Chicago Heights.
As Illinois’ 46th lieutenant governor, Simon has served alongside Gov. Pat Quinn since January 2011. She is the second highest executive officer in Illinois, and her mission is to make government more accountable, accessible, and transparent for the people of Illinois. She acts as the governor’s point person on education reform, and is leading efforts to increase college completion, inspire ethical government and protect our military bases, rural areas, and waterways. Simon first visited PSC during a fact-finding tour of the state’s 48 community colleges in her first year in office. The tour was intended to highlight the role community colleges play in reaching the state’s college completion goal. Illinois leaders want 60 percent of working-age adults to hold meaningful college degrees or certificates by 2025, up from 41 percent today.
Before choosing her as his running mate during the 2010 Illinois governor race, Quinn selected Simon to serve on the Illinois Reform Commission, which helped to establish the first political contribution limits in Illinois law. Lt. Gov. Simon also was on the Carbondale City Council from 2003 to 2007.
Simon received a bachelor’s degree from Wittenberg University and a J.D. degree from Georgetown Law School. Following graduation from law school, she worked as a staff attorney at the Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation from 1987 to 1992, providing legal services to indigent clients. She was an associate at the firm of O’Neill & Colvin in Carbondale, Illinois from 1992 to 1994, and then served as an assistant state’s attorney in Jackson County, Illinois from 1994 to 1998, where she prosecuted DUIs and domestic battery cases. Along with several other attorneys and with the support of school faculty, Simon helped to inaugurate the Southern Illinois University School of Law Domestic Violence Clinic in 1998. She worked as a clinical assistant professor at Southern Illinois University School of Law from 2000 to 2005 and was promoted to clinical associate professor in 2005. She taught both Lawyering Skills and Family Law in addition to her clinical teaching.
More than 400 students will graduate from PSC with associate degrees and certificates, and approximately 275 graduates will participate in the ceremony. For more information about PSC's commencement ceremony, contact the Office of Student Affairs at (708) 709-3546.
PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE SPEECH TEAM BRINGS HOME GOLD IN REGIONAL TOURNAMENT
[Released 05/03/13] The Prairie State College (PSC) speech team was named co-regional champions in Individual Events and received the silver medal overall (Individual Events and Debate) during the Phi Rho Pi Region 4 Speech Tournament at Elgin Community College. This is the first team gold medal for a PSC team at regional competition since 2007.
Team member Nicholas Williams of Homewood received a gold medal in both speech to entertain and program oral interpretation, a silver medal in both poetry interpretation and persuasive speaking, and received the Cheri Corey Award for Individual Sweepstakes, making him the regional champion as top overall speaker. He is the first PSC speech team member to win the award.
Other individual awards included Matt Jiles of Flossmoor, silver medal for impromptu speaking; Sarah Hill of Harvey, silver medal in both prose interpretation and dramatic interpretation; and Jasmine Ross of Richton Park, bronze medal in dramatic interpretation and silver medal in persuasive speaking. Also competing with the team was Liz Rossi of Crete.
The team was coached by PSC Professors David Naze, Ed Schwarz, and Elighie Wilson.
"We believe in quality of events over quantity of events and it is starting to pay off," said team member Hill.
PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE ANNOUNCES 14TH PRESIDENT
[Released 05/02/13] The Prairie State College (PSC) Board of Trustees has selected Terri Winfree, Ph.D., to serve as the college's 14th president. The announcement was made following the board's April board meeting on Tuesday, April 30. She will start her new position as PSC president on May 19, 2013.
For Winfree, it is yet another "first" she has achieved since starting at PSC as a part-time student. She is the first woman president of the college, the first PSC graduate to be named president, and the first person in her family to attend college.
Winfree started taking computer classes at PSC as a part time student to assist with the business side of her family's restaurant, and fell in love with learning.
"It was my experience in a learning community class that made me realize the importance of a well-rounded education. Professors John Flannigan and Dr. Maurine Stein challenged me when I was a PSC student and made me think differently. I wanted to learn more," she said.
After graduating from PSC with an Associate Degree in General Studies in 1996, she received her Bachelor of Arts in 1998 and Master of Arts in 2000 from Governors State University. In 2012, she obtained her Ph.D. in Education and Human Resources from Colorado State University.
Winfree's career at PSC is extensive. She has served as vice president of community and economic development since 2007. Prior to that, she was the dean, continuing professional education from 2004 to 2007; associate dean, continuing professional education from 2000 to 2004; manager, Matteson Area Center from 1998 to 2000; coordinator, career training programs in 1998; and other part-time duties. She also has been an adjunct faculty member at Governors State University and St. Francis University.
Winfree's focus will be on serving students, and she emphasized that all PSC employees are student success specialists.
"We are all in this together. We understand that today things are switching so rapidly that lifelong learning is a necessity," she said.
Alignment of the education workforce markets also will be emphasized.
"We need to focus on where our students will work. Businesses are constantly changing, and we need to have a realistic, philosophical approach to the regional workforce needs. I intend to listen to all the stakeholders-students, staff, and community employers - and am interested in aligning what PSC does with the community needs," she said.
As Winfree reflected on her education and career, she discussed the encouragement she received along the way to both continue her education and her professional development at PSC.
"So many people saw my potential and encouraged me," she said. "I came to PSC in 1989 to take classes and never stopped, continuing on to get my bachelor's and master's degrees at GSU while working and raising my sons. Then, after taking less than one year off, I decided I wanted to become a vice president and eventually a president at a community college, so I decided to begin the journey of earning my Ph.D."
As president of PSC, Winfree wants to do for others what people have done for her: encourage students and employees to find their potential and to act on those opportunities, provide learning opportunities, and help them to grow.
"I am thrilled and honored with this new opportunity," she said.
ILLINOIS TOLLWAY TO CREATE CONSTRUCTION BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CENTER AT PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE
[Released 05/02/2013] The Illinois Tollway, Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), and the Illinois Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (IHCC) announced plans to develop new programs and provide services to small businesses in the construction industry, including minority- and women-owned firms. The partnerships are designed to provide these firms the assistance they need to participate in the Tollway's $12 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future.
Through an agreement with the ICCB, the Tollway will commit $578,000 to establish a new Construction Business Development Center (CBDC). The CBDC will be led by Prairie State College (PSC) in Chicago Heights, in partnership with South Suburban College (SSC) in South Holland, Moraine Valley Community College (MVCC) in Palos Hills, and Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove. This partnership will develop flexible, customized training and technical assistance to provide small, minority and women-owned firms in the construction industry with the skills and knowledge they need to grow and succeed.
According to Dr. Terri Winfree, vice president of community and economic development at PSC, this is terrific opportunity for this area. "This will allow us to assist the smaller construction companies to build capacity and prepare to bid as subcontractors on the Tollway projects. We will be positioned to assist companies with personalized technical assistance in addition to classroom training. While PSC is the lead college, we will be working closely with SSC, MVCC, and Wabaunsee to deliver the best service to assist these companies become successful. We are extremely excited about this opportunity to help the region."
The CBDC will be located at PSC's Matteson Area Center, in Matteson, Illinois. For more information, contact Lisa Zeigler at (708)709-3548.
Course offerings will include: How to do Business with the Tollway; Finance and Accounting for Construction Contractors; Insurance, Bonding, Estimating and Bidding; Introduction to Project Management; Safety and Field Operations; and Business and Marketing Plan Development. Networking events, one-on-one counseling, and post-training assistance will also be provided. June 1 is the anticipated start date. The CBDC is expected to prepare more than 30 small, minority- and women-owned firms for leadership positions on Tollway projects in its first year.
The CDBC will launch this spring and is expected to prepare more than 30 small, minority- and women-owned firms for leadership positions on Tollway projects in its first year.
"We are embarking on the largest capital program in the Tollway's history," Illinois Tollway Executive Director Kristi Lafleur said. "Throughout the next 15 years, businesses will have a chance to play a role in our Move Illinois program and put thousands of men and women to work. We want to make sure that all firms, from right out of the gate to the finish line, have an opportunity to compete for and win Tollway contracts and bring them to completion."
About Move Illinois
The Illinois Tollway's $12 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future, will improve mobility, relieve congestion, reduce pollution, create as many as 120,000 jobs, and link economies across the Midwest region. Move Illinois will address the remaining needs of the existing Tollway system; rebuild and widen the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) as a state-of-the-art 21st century corridor; construct a new interchange to connect the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) to I-57; build a new, all-electronic Elgin O'Hare Western Access; and fund planning studies for the Illinois Route 53/120 Extension and the Illiana Expressway.
About the Illinois Tollway
The Illinois Tollway is a user-fee system that receives no state or federal funds for maintenance and operations. The agency maintains and operates 286 miles of interstate tollways in 12 counties in Northern Illinois, including the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88), the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355), the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90), and the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80).
ARTWORK BY GRADUATING PSC STUDENTS ON DISPLAY APRIL 29 TO MAY 23
[Released 05/01/2013] Works of art from nine graduating Prairie State College (PSC) students is on display from April 29 to May 23 in the Christopher Art Gallery, located on the PSC main campus at 202 S. Halsted St. in Chicago Heights.
The featured works include drawings, paintings, photography, and mixed-media pieces by the students, who are completing degrees in fine arts, graphic communications, and photography.
A reception in honor of the student artists will be held from noon to 2 p.m., Thursday, May 2 in the gallery.
Professor Paul Rinaldi, coordinator of PSC's fine arts program, is the curator of the exhibition.
Students whose art is displayed are Kara Adair of Crete, Taylor Augustson of Lowell, Ind., Reginald Gale of Chicago Heights, Alice Jacobs of Olympia Fields, Dylan Moulesong of Griffith, Ind., Amber Peoples of Richton Park, Natalie Pesick of Olympia Fields, Lindsey Walker of Richton Park, and Drew Young of Park Forest.
"We are delighted to highlight the strength of our art department's instruction through the high quality work of our graduating students. Each body of work indicates a commitment to generously revealing of students' thoughts and emotions, as our students challenge themselves to reach beyond mere technique to creating work that has a personal stamp of identity," said Beth Shadur, director of the gallery.
Hours for the Christopher Art Gallery are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Wednesday and Thursday from 5 to 7 p.m. Visits also can be made by appointment. For more information about the exhibit, or to make an appointment for a visit, contact the PSC Foundation at (708) 709-3636.
SUMMER COURSE REGISTRATION IS UNDERWAY AT PSC
[Released 04/19/2013] Registration for summer courses is underway at Prairie State College (PSC). Course offerings include credit and non-credit courses, courses for students from other colleges or universities that are home for the summer, and free courses for high school seniors.
Credit courses include two eight-week summer sessions. The first session begins May 28 and ends July 19. The second session begins June 10 and ends Aug. 2. Classes are offered days, evenings, and online.
To register for credit courses, new students must complete an enrollment application in person at the college, located at 202 S. Halsted St., in Chicago Heights, or online at prairiestate.edu/admissions/newStudents.html. Current students can register for credit courses in person or online on WebAdvisor.
Credit courses also provide students who are home from college for the summer with the opportunity to fulfill general education requirements at a fraction of the cost, and transfer the credits back to their home college. Classes available include English, speech, biology, chemistry, history, and math. For more information, visit prairiestate.edu/summeronly.
High school students who plan to graduate in 2014 can take advantage of the college's tuition-free offer. To be eligible, students must attend a high school in the PSC district, have a GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4-point scale, and have permission from their high school. For more information, contact Beth Wyack, enrollment advisor, at (708) 709-7776.
From bike repair to certificate programs, PSC also has a number of non-credit courses that begin throughout the summer. Students can register for non-credit courses online or in person. To register online via Instant Enrollment, go to prairiestate.edu and follow the directions to choose How To Enroll under continuing education courses. Another option is to complete the registration form available online at prairiestate.edu/ced/schedules/registration.pdf or in the back of the printed course schedule. Students also can register for non-credit courses in person at the Matteson Area Center, located at 4821 Southwick Drive in Matteson, or in the Enrollment Services Office on the PSC main campus. Hours of operation for the Matteson Area Center are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., and Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The summer course schedule is available online at prairiestate.edu and on PSC's main campus. Schedules are mailed to district households and are available at the public libraries. For more information, call the college at (708) 709-3500 or visit prairiestate.edu.
PSC SEEKS NOMINATIONS FOR COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARDS
[Released 04/17/2013] Thousands of people in the Prairie State College (PSC) district give generously of their time and talent to make the community a better place. To honor these individuals, PSC is accepting nominations for two community service awards, one to honor a community member and another to honor a PSC graduate.
The first is the Dr. James H. Griffith Community Service Award, given to a 2013 PSC graduate. Nominees should be individuals who have contributed in an extraordinary way to the community. The award is named after former Trustee Dr. James H. Griffith, who served for 25 years on the PSC Board of Trustees.
The second award is the Michael R. Monteleone Community Service Award, given to a community member of the PSC district. Nominees must be a person or group who has contributed, in an extraordinary way and over a long period of time, to education through community service, as either a volunteer or a community leader. A nominee's service efforts should be within the PSC district, although additional activities in other areas would be recognized. Also, the nominee should not be employed in the community service or public service field. The award is named after former Trustee and Board Chair Michael R. Monteleone, who served on the Board of Trustees for 21 years, from 1981 to 2002.
All nominations must arrive at the PSC President's Office no later than Friday, May 10. To receive a nomination form or for more information, call Deb Havighorst, executive assistant to the Board of Trustees, at (708) 709-7918.
EARTH WEEK CELEBRATION BEGINS AT PSC APRIL 22
[Released 04/16/2013] Prairie State College (PSC) is hosting several events to celebrate Earth Week from Monday, April 22 through Saturday, April 27. All events during the week are free and open to the public, and will be held on the PSC main campus, located at 202 S. Halsted St. in Chicago Heights.
On Monday, April 22, from 1 to 2 p.m., the program "Cooking with Local Foods," will be presented by Adrian Martino and Marco Caso of Fratellos in the Conference Center Rotunda. From 3 to 4 p.m., there will be a tree planting ceremony, featuring a special poem reading by the Earth Day Poetry Contest winner. Participants should meet in the Conference Center Rotunda. In the event of rain, an alternative date has been scheduled on Thursday, April 25.
On Tuesday, April 23, a Green Vendor Fair, featuring more than 20 green vendors, will be held from 1 to 7 p.m. in the Atrium. Additionally, a program, "It's Easy Wearing Green Fashion Show: Eco-friendly trends for pets and their humans," will be held from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. in the Atrium, and a community discussion panel, "How is our local community responding to and stimulating the green economy?" will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Conference Center Auditorium.
Events on Wednesday, April 24, include, "Greening Your Body," presented by Jan Dowell from 1 to 2 p.m. in the Atrium, and a nature preserve clean up from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. A rain date for the clean up has been slated for Thursday, April 25.
Programs scheduled for Thursday, April 25 include a noon to 2 p.m. program, "Jobs in Energy Efficiency," presented by Will Baker of the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, held in the PSC Conference Center; "Jim Nesci's Cold Blooded Creatures: Conservation Through Education," scheduled from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the Atrium; and a movie presentation of "Dr. Suess' The Lorax," scheduled from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Conference Center Heritage Bank Room.
The week long celebration will conclude with a community recycling drive, co-sponsored with SouthSTAR Services' EcoSafe Processors, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, April 27, in Parking Lot C. Among the items being collected are E-waste, batteries, paint, light bulbs, clothes, and shoes.
"SouthSTAR has a truly inspiring initiative, providing people with disabilities the training and skills necessary to work in the green economy," said Allessandra Cairo, PSC sustainability coordinator.
"This year's Earth Week events are sure to impress. We've covered it all from eco-friendly trends for pets and their humans to Bubba the Alligator teaching kids about the importance of conservation," Caro added. "I'm really excited so many vendors and community members pulled together to make Earth Week happen. It is sure to be a fun, exciting and educational experience for everyone," she said.
For more information, contact Cairo at (708) 709-3764 or email@example.com.
SIX PSC STUDENTS INDUCTED INTO NATIONAL NURSING HONOR SOCIETY
[Released 04/08/13] Six Prairie State College (PSC) nursing students recently were inducted into the National Organization of Associate Degree Nursing (N-OADN) Alpha Delta Nu Nursing Honor Society. They are the first class of inductees since PSC's Alpha Chapter became nationally recognized in 2012.
Inductees were Darrell Hartmann of Steger, Jasmine McDonald of Park Forest, Nichole McDonald of Beecher, Molly McMann of Park Forest, Gregory Taylor of Chicago Heights, and Louis Wortel of Chicago Heights. Their accomplishments were celebrated during a March 4 ceremony.
Professor Kathleen Malic, chair/coordinator of the nursing program at PSC, says that to be inducted, a student must maintain an 86% or better in all of the core nursing courses. "The induction ceremony is a celebration of their hard work and professional potential," she added.
The PSC Nursing Honor Society had its first induction ceremony in 2000. In spring 2011, PSC became the Alpha Chapter of the Illinois Organization of Associate Degree Nurses (I-OADN) Alpha Delta Nu Honor Society, and in fall 2012 was named the Alpha Chapter of the National Organization of Associate Degree Nurses (N-OADN) Alpha Delta Nu Honor Society. More than 100 students have been inducted into the honor society since it was established.
The objective of the N-OADN Alpha Delta Nu Nursing Honor Society is to recognize the academic excellence of students in the study of Associate Degree Nursing. The society encourages the pursuit of advance degrees in the profession of nursing, as well as continuing education as a life-long professional responsibility. The society also participates in the recruitment of qualified individuals into the profession of nursing.
"We are proud of the national status that our honor society has attained. We are the Alpha Chapter of the National Organization of Associate Degree Nursing Alpha Delta Nu Nursing Honor Society and there are now over 30 chapters nationwide. It all began here at PSC," Malic said.
WEEK OF THE YOUNG CHILD CONFERENCE SCHEDULED AT PSC APRIL 20
[Released 04/04/2013] Prairie State College (PSC) is hosting the "Week of the Young Child Conference: The Child and the Curriculum," from 8 a.m. to 12:35 p.m., Saturday, April 20, in the Conference Center of the PSC main campus, located at 202 S. Halsted Street in Chicago Heights.
Keynote speaker Dr. Barbara Biles, an adjunct professor at Waubonsee Community College, will present "It's All About Relationships - The Child and the Curriculum."
The Week of the Young Child is an annual celebration by the National Association for the Education of Young Children, the world's largest early childhood education association. The purpose is to focus public attention on the needs of young children and their families, and to recognize the early childhood programs and services that meet those needs.
Registration is $10 and includes breakfast and a choice of five breakout sessions. Early childhood educators can earn 4.0 DCFS In-Service/Registry Training Hours. Elementary school teachers can earn 4.0 CPDUs. There is an additional $10 processing fee for CPDUs.
For more information or to register, contact Carina Lowe at (708) 709-7957 or Clowe3@prairiestate.edu.
PSC TO HOST JOB FAIR ON APRIL 16
[Released 04/02/2013] Prairie State College (PSC) invites job seekers to attend the 2013 Spring Job Fair from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Tuesday, April 16, in the Conference Center of the college, located at 202 S. Halsted St., Chicago Heights. The fair is co-sponsored with UPS, The Chicagoland Regional College Program, and the PSC Illinois workNet Center.
The job fair is free and open to the public. Company representatives will recruit for both full- and part-time positions. Several companies already are scheduled to participate, including U.S. Secret Service, Bulkmatic, Homewood Police Department, Bimba Manufacturing Company, Crawford Broadcasting, Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Chicago, and Franciscan Alliance. New employers regularly are added. A complete, up-to-date listing of companies and the positions they are hiring for is available at prairiestate.edu/jobfair.
Attendees are required to dress in professional business attire and encouraged to bring plenty of résumés. Pre-registration for the job fair is encouraged, and is available at prairiestate.edu/jobfair.
"Job fairs are a wonderful opportunity for job seekers to speak directly to employers who are eager to fill their open positions," said Tanya Norfleet, coordinator of career development services.
For more information about the job fair, contact Norfleet at (708) 709-3755 or Ramien Manson, career advisor, at (708) 709-3922, or e-mail Career Development Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FORUM TO MEET PSC BOARD OF TRUSTEES CANDIDATES SCHEDULED APRIL 4
[Released 03/29/2013] The Prairie State College (PSC) Student Government Association and PSC Political Science Club, along with the League of Women Voters of the Homewood-Flossmoor and Park Forest areas, are co-sponsoring a forum for the six candidates running for two open PSC Board of Trustee seats.
The forum will give attendees the opportunity to meet and ask questions of the candidates who participate, and will be held from 7 to 9 p.m., Thursday, April 4, in the Conference Center Auditorium, located on the PSC main campus at 202 S. Halsted St. in Chicago Heights.
The candidates running are Jacqueline Agee, Charles (Chuck) Dieringer, Margaret (Peg) Donahue, Mary Madden-Cifelli, Joelle Mulhearn, and Linda Uzureau.
Cynthia Schilsky, president of the Cook County League of Women Voters and a member of the LaGrange League of Women Voters, will moderate.
For more information, call S. Tillman at 708-799-9721.
PSC DENTAL HYGIENE PROGRAM IS GRANTED FULL REACCREDITATION
[Released 03/22/2013] The dental hygiene program at Prairie State College (PSC) has been granted the accreditation status of "approval without reporting requirements" by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA).
CODA is a specialized accrediting body of the American Dental Association, recognized by the United States Department of Education. The PSC program must be reaccredited every seven years. The next site visit for the program is scheduled for 2019.
"I am very proud of the faculty and students in the program for this accomplishment," said Dr. Marie Hansel, dean, health and industrial technology and director of nursing at PSC. "It is because of them that PSC has such a strong, successful dental hygiene program."
The dental hygiene program at PSC is an 82-credit hour Associate in Applied Science degree program that prepares graduates to provide services assisting patients in the prevention of oral diseases and maintenance of optimal oral health. Upon successful completion of the written Dental Hygiene National Board Examination and a regional clinical examination, the program graduate is eligible for Illinois licensure.
For more information on the program, call (708) 709-3708.
The Prairie State College (PSC) Board of Trustees announces the selection of three finalists for the position of college president. Dr. Alex J. Kajstura, Dr. Valerie R. Roberson, and Dr. Terri Winfree will interview with the board and the search committee and participate in open forums beginning April 2. Schedules for the interviews and open forums will be available beginning Monday, March 25 at prairiestate.edu/PresidentialSearch/finalists.html.
Dr. Alex J. Kajstura is the campus president of the Northwest Campus at Pima County Community College in Tucson, Arizona. He previously served as provost at Tidewater Community College in Virginia, provost and then dean of Daytona Beach Community College in Florida, associate dean of Palm Beach Community College in Florida, director at Texas State Technical College, and member of the chemistry and physics faculty at Northeast Texas Community College.
Kajstura serves on several boards in the Tucson area, ranging from the Greater Oro Valley Chamber of Commerce to the Northwest YMCA and the Southern Arizona Arts and Cultural Alliance. He also serves on the Education Committee for the Tucson Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.
Kajstura earned a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from Southern Illinois University, a Master of Business Administration degree from LeTourneau University, a Master of Science degree in Organic Chemistry from Texas Tech University, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Silesian University in Poland. He is a regular presenter at League for Innovation conferences.
Dr. Valerie R. Roberson is the vice president of academic affairs at Joliet Junior College. Roberson earned a Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from Illinois State University, a Master of Arts in Adult Education from Roosevelt University, and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Bradley University. She also has done graduate work at Northwestern University.
Roberson began a teaching career at the Business Institute of Chicago at City Colleges of Chicago, where she designed custom training to assist area employers. Roberson moved to Triton College, where she served as director of adult education. She then became the first director of adult education at Heartland Community College in Normal, Illinois. At Heartland, she held several positions including vice president for institutional advancement. Roberson became associate vice chancellor for adult education at City Colleges of Chicago and president of Olive-Harvey College. She then joined Joliet Junior College as its vice president of academic affairs. Throughout the lengthy illness of the college president, Roberson worked directly with the Joliet Junior College Board of Trustees managing institutional research for the college, completing its strategic plan, and guiding it to renewed accreditation.
Dr. Terri Winfree is the vice president of community and economic development at PSC. She has a Ph.D. degree from Colorado State University, a Master of Communication and a Bachelor's degree in Communication from Governors State University, and an associate degree from PSC.
In her current position, Winfree has worked successfully with the PSC Board of Trustees, several related colleges and universities, employers, and state and federal elected officials. She has written and administered a number of grants during her association with PSC. Winfree has held several other positions at PSC, including associate dean and then dean of continuing professional education, and manager of the Matteson Area Center.
Winfree has a special interest in board service and the preparation that board members receive before and after taking office. She has served in leadership positions of the Professional Women's Network, the Chicago Southland Chamber of Commerce, the Illinois Council of Continuing Education and Training, the Illinois Council of Community College Administrators, the Beecher School District, where she served as a board member, the Beecher Education Foundation, and the Beecher Economic Development Authority.
The PSC Board of Trustees and the search committee selected four people for interviews. Monday, one of the four candidates withdrew from the search.
For more information, contact Dr. Gary Davis, Board Solutions at (217) 737-3359.
PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE TEAM HAS 'HISTORIC' RESULTS AT STATE SPEECH TOURNAMENT
[Released 03/15/13] Prairie State College (PSC) student Nick Williams of Homewood was named state champion for individual sweepstakes in the community college division, making him the top overall speaker in the division during the Illinois Intercollegiate Forensics Association (IIFA) State Tournament hosted by Northern Illinois University. The PSC team was named sixth overall in the division.
Williams also received second place and varsity final for program oral interpretation, and was named state champion for poetry interpretation in the community college division. He received second place for after dinner speaking and second place for oratory for the community college division.
"Nick's results in this competition are historic for PSC," said team coach David Naze. "Illinois is one of the best states in the country in forensics competition and he is the first PSC team member to win individual sweepstakes and to break into a final round in four different events," he added.
Liz Rossi of Crete also received sixth place for informative speaking in the community college division. Additional team members competing were Jasmine Ross of Richton Park, Matt Jiles of Flossmoor, and Sarah Hill of Harvey. The team was coached by PSC Professors David Naze, Ed Schwarz, and Elighie Wilson.
"The key to success at this tournament was to have fun above all else," Williams said.
PRAIRIE STATE COLLEGE SPEECH TEAM TAKES SIXTH IN HARPER COLLEGE TOURNAMENT
[Released 03/12/2013] The Prairie State College (PSC) speech team received sixth place overall and the fourth place quality award during a recent tournament hosted by Harper College. They competed against teams from 20 schools over four states.
Among the individual awards PSC students received were third place in prose interpretation and second place in persuasive speaking for Jasmine Ross of Richton Park, sixth place in informative speaking for Liz Rossi of Crete, fourth place in speech to entertain for Nick Williams of Homewood, and seventh place for dramatic interpretation for Sarah Hill of Harvey. The team was coached by PSC Professors David Naze, Ed Schwarz, and Elighie Wilson.
Though the number of PSC students competing was smaller than previous competitions, "big things happen in small numbers," said team member Jasmine Hill.
AREA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT ART WORK FEATURED DURING PSC GALLERY EXHIBIT
[Released 03/01/2013] Student artists from regional high schools will have their work on display during the Prairie State College (PSC) Annual High School Exhibition, from Monday, March 18 through Thursday, April 11, 2013, at the Christopher Art Gallery on the PSC main campus, located at 202 S. Halsted St. in Chicago Heights.
A reception for the artists and their families will be held at 5 p.m., Thursday, March 21, and features an awards ceremony at 7 p.m.
Student submissions will include works in computer art, drawing, painting, mixed media, graphic design, sculpture, and photography. High schools represented in previous years included Rich Central, Rich East, Rich South, Bloom, Bloom Trail, Crete-Monee, Beecher, and Homewood-Flossmoor.
"Last year's show had some outstanding work in it, and many of the high school art teachers came for the reception," said gallery Director Beth Shadur. "This is a wonderful way to highlight student work in our beautiful space."
"I am eagerly looking forward to the submissions of student art work," said exhibit curator, Professor Louis Shields. "It is always a joy to look over the talented students in the area."
The Christopher Art Gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 5 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. Visits also can be made by appointment. For more information about the exhibit or to make an appointment for a visit, contact the PSC Foundation at (708) 709-3636.
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