Sterling Silva: Camila’s Story

Camila Silva MonroeCamila Silva Monroe will graduate with her Associate of Science (Chemistry transfer major) degree from Arapahoe Community College in May 2018.

The second of four children in her family, Monroe is originally from Brazil, specifically the rural town of Estiva in the state of Minas Gerais. At the age of 17, she moved to Sao Paolo to attend college upon finishing high school at Conego Francisco Stella State School. Monroe would go on to work as a journalist in Brazil for five years before making the decision to relocate to the United States.

“I worked as an entertainment journalist and movie critic, and I was a freelance writer for Brazil’s foremost science magazine,” Monroe explained. “I came to the U.S. in January 2013 as an au pair to live with an amazing American host family in Littleton – just five minutes from ACC. I wanted to rethink my career choices and learn English.”

Monroe relocated alone. She hoped immersing herself into the new culture without a network of support would accelerate a successful transition and a fresh start. In January 2016, she enrolled at ACC.

“I have always been very dedicated to my education,” explains Monroe. “Books were always a way for me to escape a complicated life growing up in Brazil. When I told my parents I was returning to school to become an engineer, they were beyond excited. My mom actually told me she secretly always dreamed of having one of her children become an engineer.”

Monroe became involved with ACC’s Sigma Phi Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society during her first semester on campus, earning a Letters of Humanities award that term as a Distinguished Phi Theta Kappa Officer. Subsequently, she found herself gravitating toward then-Sigma Phi President Leah Porter, whom Monroe credits for helping her look within herself to find the leader inside.

“Leah was also a non-traditional, non-U.S. born student in search of a new career,” explains Monroe. “She was not only a great inspiration to me, she’s now my best friend.”

Monroe began her leadership journey in Phi Theta Kappa as the Vice President of Research. Her involvement in the chapter’s Honors in Action projects has been substantial, with awareness projects ranging from groundwater scarcity to elderly depression/suicide. In fact, Monroe led Sigma Phi to a national top-ten finish for “Distinguished Honors in Action Project” at the 2017 annual Phi Theta Kappa convention while serving in the capacity of Vice President of Honors in Action.

Language never proved to be a barrier for Monroe when she came to the U.S. The cost of international-student tuition, however, has been challenging. In fact, Monroe and her older sister still, to this day, provide monetary support for their parents during a time of economic crisis in her homeland. Thankfully, she says, ACC has provided her with many opportunities to overcome the financial obstacles.

“I have received several thousand dollars in scholarships at ACC, and I am so grateful. I’ve also benefitted from having a great on-campus job as a tutor in the Student Success Center and the Biology 111 Study Lab.” Monroe says.

She served as the president of both Sigma Phi and the ACC Student Government Association during the 2017-18 academic year. Monroe is a member of the President’s Student Advisory Council and the National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS) honor society, and is active with the ACC division of the Colorado Space Grant Program.

Selected as a member of the 2017-18 Phi Theta Kappa All-Colorado Academic Team, Monroe also earned prestigious Guistwhite and New Century Transfer Pathway scholarships this spring. One of just 15 nationwide Guistwhite Scholars, Monroe earned a $5,000 scholarship for baccalaureate studies. Winners of the Guistwhite Scholarship are selected based on academic excellence, leadership accomplishments and engagement in Phi Theta Kappa programs. Monroe also received a $2,250 scholarship for being selected as a New Century Transfer Pathway Scholar. Only one winner from each state is chosen for the honor, with selection being based on academic accomplishments, leadership, activities, and extension of intellectual talents beyond the classroom.

In April 2018, Monroe was selected as one of two ACC Rising Stars. The annual CCCS Rising Star awards are designed to recognize the outstanding contributions of students who exemplify the best in service and leadership at their institution. Monroe went on to earn Distinguished Chapter Officer recognition at Phi Theta Kappa’s 2018 annual convention later that month, an honor bestowed upon just 30 of several thousand officers.

“Camila leads Sigma Phi meetings with energy, efficiency and grace,” stated Shari Culver, Sigma Phi Co-Advisor and Career & Transfer Counselor at ACC. “She is accomplished, bright, diligent and resilient.”

Monroe plans to transfer to Colorado State University to study Chemical and Biological Engineering. She aspires to change the way our society creates and consumes food via safer research and development of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). During the summer of 2018, she will participate in the Rocky Mountain Sustainability and Science Network Summer Academy, where a select group of attendees work to address regional sustainability issues throughout the intermountain west.

“During my time as a writer in Brazil, I found it fascinating to learn about how genetic evolution was a factor in our dietary habits,” says Monroe, who conducts research as a community scientist in the Denver Museum of Nature & Science’s Genetics of Taste lab, “We need scientists who are able to properly communicate with the general public and have a solid background of bioethics. I want to become a responsible, thoughtful scientist.”

Monroe praises ACC’s faculty, staff and Sigma Phi advisors for helping her to become a successful student and a strong leader.

“I’ve received so much support with challenges both in and out of the classroom,” Monroe said. “ACC is a place filled with people who help you become the leader you need to be – you just need to reach out.”

by Jeff Duggan, ACC Communications Coordinator

How to Work a Career Fair

Attend the 2018 Career Fair,
11 am – 2 pm, Wednesday, March 28 in the Summit Room to meet over 60 employers interested in talking to you! All industries are represented. Come with your resume, questions, and dressed to impress.

 


Career fairs are an efficient way to connect with potential employers. Preparation, communication, and follow-up are the keys to making a career fair an interesting, fun, and valuable experience.  In addition to seeking employment, other reasons to attend a career fair include:

If you are unsure about choosing a career field, use the career fair as a way to explore different pathways and employers. Approach employers, introduce yourself, and tell the representative that you are currently making some career and academic choices and would like to know more about their organization and opportunities. They will probably tell you some general information about their mission and provide you with some literature.

If your career field or desired position is not represented, use the fair to network for additional contacts. Select employers who might potentially use your career field and approach them. Introduce yourself and, as an example, tell the representative that you know the organization is recruiting for engineers, but that you are interested in a marketing position and ask about these opportunities. Next, ask if the representative could provide a name of a contact for these positions. The recruiter may offer to forward your resume for you and if so, you should still try to get a contact name and follow-up with the contact after the career fair.

 Prep

  • Find out which employers will attend and target those you most want to contact.
  • Research those employers through the Career and Transfer Center and internet resources.
  • Prepare questions you want to ask each potential employer.
  • Update your resume. Consult a Career Counselor.
  • Bring more copies of your resume than you think you need, A notebook or portfolio with room for collecting employer brochure and business cards is a good idea.
  • Prepare a short professional introduction including focused information about your experience, strengths, accomplishments, career interests, and goals. Brainstorm with a Career Counselor, if necessary, to prepare your introduction.
  • Dress professionally—you are making that all important first impression.
  • Arrive early and plan on extra time for parking and locating targeted employers.

Communication

  • When meeting employer representatives, shake hands, make eye contact, and smile. Demonstrate enthusiasm, confidence, and interest.
  • Present your professional introduction and ask any questions you might have.
  • Answer questions they may have for you directly, politely, and concisely.
  • Listen attentively and gather information about career opportunities,. Keep notes, business cards, or brochures from employers you contact. Be sure to thank them for their time.
  • Network with others while standing in line—you may hear about other opportunities,. To explore your options, visit a few employers you did not target, s they may also have opportunities.
  • If felling overwhelmed, give yourself time to break and return to the fair with renewed energy and a positive attitude.

Follow up

  • Send a thank-you notes to any representative who spent a significant amount of time with you, gave you valuable information, or alerted you to an opportunity. Remind them how you met, your qualifications, and reiterate your interest in the organization.
  • Follow-up on any employment opportunities that interest you. This may include a phone call, completing an online application, sending your resume and cover letter to the human resources department or potential supervisor, requesting a job description, or obtaining an application packet.

Remember to relax and enjoy yourself. Do not be intimidated. Collect information, literature, free giveaways, and most of all have fun!

ACC Littleton Campus Construction Update – December 2017

As the fall semester draws to a close, we are also getting closer to completing our 3rd floor remodel and bringing you state-of-the-art science labs and new student lounge/study space.

Take a look at our progress!

We have walls (and ceilings)! Ceiling and wall structures in place Construction workers drywalling bio labs Ceiling pipes and tile structure Construction workers continue to drywall the bio labs  Lab pipes More wall and ceiling structure in place Wall ready for drywall. Student study space flooring adjustments 3rd Floor science lab hallway in progress Structural support walls ready for drywallFurniture is going in!

Plastic entry to construction zoneCabinets in place in a bio labCabinets waiting to be placed into labs and classroomsMore lab/classroom furniture ready to be placedConstruction worker putting in lab furnitureConstruction worker moving furniture into placeFurniture in science lab/classroomOur construction team is hard at work to complete the 3rd floor remodel. We appreciate your patience during the remodel as we make improvements around ACC to help you Move Mountains!

ViTaL Team Volunteers at Project Homeless Connect

On September 19, 2017, ACC’s ViTaL team joined together with the College Diversity and Inclusivity Project (CDIP) and ACC’s Student Life department to volunteer at Project Homeless Connect, a one-day free resource fair that provides services to the homeless individuals and families in need. In total, 10 ACC students, faculty, and staff volunteered alongside over 800 volunteers from across the city to serve at this event.

Project Homeless Connect volunteers wait to be paired with clients attending Project Homeless Connect.

Project Homeless Connect volunteers wait to be paired with clients attending Project Homeless Connect.

Project Homeless Connect offered an array of services including ID services, housing services, resume workshops, clothing banks, vision check, healthcare, veterans services, childcare, and pet care.

Lunch was provided for anyone who attended this event.

Lunch was provided for anyone who attended this event.

Massages were one of the services for the clients.

Massages were one of the services for the clients.

Many clients applied for a library card at the event.

Many clients applied for a library card at the event.

Here are some of the amazing results from the one day of service:

  • 69 people were hired on the spot
  • 130 people received assistance with their legal questions
  • 145 people created résumés
  • 178 people attended the onsite job fair
  • 180 people received medical screenings, along with HIV, liver function, and diabetes tests, as appropriate
  • 199 pets were vaccinated, spayed, or neutered
  • 255 people received haircuts and 205 received massages
  • 450 people learned about or enrolled in Denver Human Services benefit

Project Homeless Connect served over 1,300 people that day and changed the lives of both the volunteers and those served. Perhaps the most important word in its title is the word “Connect.”

ACC student Olivia Perkovich explains how she felt after serving at the event:

“Project Homeless was an ultimate success! I had a blast being able to help my community by making a difference by creating hygiene bags for all homeless around Denver. It made me feel great to know I could help contribute and it is so awesome to work with a group of people who are all so oriented, helpful and kind to put in an event of this sort together for our community and for the ones who need it most. Nothing feels better then to give back to those in need! This was definitely an event I will remember and I can’t wait to do it again!”

ACC Director of Student Life Dan Balski along with nine other ACC students, faculty and staff volunteered at Project Homeless Connect.

ACC Director of Student Life Dan Balski along with nine other ACC students, faculty and staff volunteered at Project Homeless Connect.

The blue bear watched over the events.

The blue bear watched over the events.

We hope many more ACC students and entire departments will come join us at this important event next year!

by Josie Mills, Ph.D., ACC English faculty

Explore our Pathways at the ACC Degree Showcase

Degree Showcase 2017 - Wednesday, March 29 from 4:30-7:30pm. ACC Littleton Campus - Summit RoomAre you considering ACC or a current student, unsure of what your path should be or maybe you just want to explore your options? Check out our pathways and find the degree or certificate that’s right for you at our Degree Showcase on Wednesday, March 29 from 4:30 – 7:30 p.m. in the Summit Room at ACC’s Littleton campus.

Learn about everything from applying to ACC, attending school here and paying for your education. This event is open to the public but be sure to RSVP so we know you’re coming!

The schedule of events include:

  • 4:30 – 4:45 p.m. Check-In (Summit Room)
  • 4:30 – 7:30 p.m. Degree Showcase (Summit Room) – feel free to stop by anytime and explore various pathways and get some refreshments.
  • 5:30 – 6:20 p.m. Presentation (Waring Theatre) – Get to know ACC, advising while you are here, paying for college, Career and Transfer services, some overall really valuable information.
  • 7:20 – 7:30 p.m. Giveaways – Enter a drawing to win a 2017-18 academic year scholarship, $100 Bookstore/Café gift cards, $250 bookstore gift card for current students, and lots of swag too!

The Degree Showcase will offer information from all the following areas:

ARTS, COMMUNICATION & DESIGN

  • Architectural Engineering
  • Art History Transfer
  • Communication Transfer
  • English Transfer
  • Interior Design
  • Journalism and Contemporary Media
  • Graphic Design and Illustration
  • Music Audio Technology
  • Music Transfer
  • Photography
  • Studio Art Transfer

BUSINESS

  • Accounting
  • Business Transfer
  • Business Administration
  • General
  • Entrepreneurship
  • International Business/Foreign Language
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Construction Management
  • Economics Transfer
  • Retail Management

GLOBAL, HUMAN & SOCIAL STUDIES

  • Anthropology Transfer
  • French Transfer
  • History Transfer
  • Philosophy Transfer
  • Political Science Transfer
  • Psychology Transfer
  • Sociology Transfer
  • Spanish Transfer

HEALTH

  • Exercise Health Sciences
  • Fitness Administration
  • Health and Wellness Coaching
  • Personal Trainer/Fitness Instruction
  • Health Information Technology
  • Medical Laboratory Technology
  • Mortuary Science
  • Nursing
  • Paramedicine
  • Physical Therapist Assistant

MATH AND SCIENCES

  • Biology Transfer
  • Chemistry Transfer
  • Engineering Agreement
  • Fermentation Sciences Transfer
  • Geography Transfer
  • Geology Transfer
  • Mathematics Transfer
  • Physics Transfer
  • Psychology Transfer

PUBLIC SERVICES

  • Criminal Justice Transfer
  • Early Childhood Teacher Education Transfer
  • Elementary Teacher Education Transfer
  • Law Enforcement
  • Paralegal / Legal Assistant

TECHNOLOGY

  • Automotive Service Technology
  • Computer Information Systems
  • Business
  • Programming
  • Computer Support
  • Computer Network Technology
  • CISCO
  • Cyber Security
  • Microsoft Certified Server
  • Unix/Linux Admin
  • Engineering Technologies
  • Mechanical Design
  • Game Design and Development

The degrees designated as “Transfer” are 2-year, 60-credit degree programs for students who want to transfer to a 4-year college or university to pursue a Bachelor’s degree. The transfer degrees include Guaranteed Transfer (GT) courses as well as elective classes. Students who want to transfer to a specific four-year degree program should follow the program pathway for that specific associate degree. This is known as ‘choosing a major’. Speak to an advisor to declare your program and follow your path.

The degrees without the “Transfer” designation are designed to prepare students for entry-level positions in a broad range of occupations. It continues the students’ exposure to major areas in the industry, as well as giving the student flexibility in designing a program to fit their specific needs. A full time student can complete this type of associate degree in two years. After graduation, students typically seek employment, but some transfer opportunities to 4-year institutions are available.

And if that wasn’t enough, here are 5 ways that ACC moves you forward!

  1. More savings in your pocket – Average savings of $6,290.26 when you start at ACC and transfer to a Colorado public university.
  2. More transfer options – We have over 100 visits by four-year institutions to help enroll ACC transfer students.
  3. More School-Life Balance – 94.8% student satisfaction rate – three campuses and online.
  4. More career connections – 100+ jobs on ACC Career Connect, our exclusive, web-based job, internship and volunteer posting system just for you.
  5. More admission openings – 3 days guaranteed admissions, easy online application, processed in a few days, moving you towards success.

What’s holding you back? RSVP today for a great event to learn even more about ACC!

Why You Should Attend ACC’s Transfer Fair

ACC Spring Transfer Fair 2016So, you decided to start your college career at ACC to save a little and get a great education while doing so. You want to transfer to a 4-year university, but you’re not really sure where to start! ACC is hosting the Spring Transfer Fair on Wednesday, February 22nd from 10:30am – 1:30pm in the Summit Room on the Littleton Campus. Here’s why you should attend!

  • Get Connected with the 4-Year Representative – The earlier you connect with the 4-year university, the more effective you will be in your ACC education. Make sure that the courses you’re taking now will fit into the Bachelor’s degree you’re considering.
  • Ask Questions! Use the opportunity to find out more about programs offered, scholarships available, study abroad opportunities, internship possibilities and more.
  • Meet with over 40 different universities – Have you wondered about the difference between attending MSU or CU Denver? Have you looked into living in Boulder or Fort Collins? This is your chance to compare a variety of institutions and programs and opportunities at the same place and time!
  • Earn prizes and eat pizza – Come hungry and ready to win. Universities are giving away their cool swag and Student Life has generously donated pizza for participating students.

Did you know? The top eight schools ACC students transfer to:

  • Metropolitan State University of Denver
  • University of Colorado – Denver
  • Colorado State University
  • University of Colorado – Boulder
  • Regis University
  • University of Colorado – Colorado Springs
  • University of Northern Colorado
  • Colorado Christian University

Find out why ACC students succeed at these schools! All these universities will be at the transfer fair, and more! In addition to Colorado universities, there will be some from Nebraska, Wyoming, New Mexico, Texas, and Arizona.

Upon enrolling, almost half ACC students identify that they intend to transfer as part of their goals. The best way to make that happen is by planning in advance for a seamless transfer. Let the Career and Transfer Center assist you. You can always check out what is new in Transfer Services online, including the visitation schedule of our four-year partners who would love to enroll ACC students!

Please contact the Career and Transfer Center at 303-797-5805, careers@arapahoe.edu, M2010, Littleton campus.

by Wendy Winter-Searcy, Career & Transfer Center Director and Shari Culver, Career and Transfer Counselor

Veterans View – ACC Veterans Day Recap

Dawn Stratton and Bill Rose holding flag

ACC Testing Center Director and Veterans Club Advisor Dawn Stratton with veteran Bill Rose.

Veterans Day is one day of the year we really honor veterans, and the variety of ways this is done is amazing.

At ACC, we started the day off with Bill Rose (the husband of ACC student Linda Rose) by retiring the United States flag at the north entrance of the Littleton Campus. We carefully practiced in the Veteran Services Center with the new flag so that the motions would be synchronized. ACC police officers Al Stutman and Kevin Heylin stood by to assist with hoisting the new flag once the old one was retired from service. It had snowed the previous night and the day promised to be blustery, but as we stepped outside, the sun was shining and the wind was calm.

Bill is a Vietnam-era veteran and was so happy to have been asked to help with the flag retirement ceremony. He even put together copies of a flag etiquette brochure to hand out at our Veteran Services Center. Bill flew helicopters while he was deployed and it was evident that he had many stories from his time serving his country. He noted that it had been 20 years since he last retired a flag, but he knew exactly what to do. I felt Bill’s love for his country; visualizing a man who had fought in an unpopular war.

Bill and Linda Rose

Bill and Linda Rose

Bill and Linda spent the whole day with ACC veterans on Nov. 11. They helped serve lunch and spoke to everyone who came down for our Veteran Services Center open house. Their love of life was apparent as they happily listened to others and shared parts of their life with us. There is a certain grace found in those who have persevered through difficult times and fought to find the light at the end of the tunnel. Watching Bill and Linda with the younger vets who are still “hard in the battle”, so to speak, made me appreciate even more the hearts of those who serve our country.

We finished the day by taking ACC vets to a gala hosted by Veterans Passport 2 Hope held at the Wings Over the Rockies. ACC police officer Joey Lovett, who also serves as the Director of Public Relations for this organization, generously provided tickets for eight veterans and spouses to attend. The event was very festive with all the planes on display, the silent auction, people in uniform, bagpipers, the color guard, and everyone dressed up in their finery. Bill knew people who actually worked on some of the planes and engaged everyone with his insights on them.

The highlight of the evening was the keynote speaker, Marine Veteran Cpl. Daniel Riley, who was injuried by an IED nearly five years ago. The silence in the room and respect for him as he spoke was profound. Daniel was born in Victoria, Canada, and when he was 12 his dad took a job in Littleton. In Aug. 2010, when Daniel was 22, he enlisted in the Marine Corps and volunteered for a mission to Afghanistan. Every day, there were foot patrols and security operations. On Dec. 16, 2010, as Daniel stepped down and felt the ground give way beneath his foot, he knew what was going to happen next.

As we listened to him, there wasn’t an ounce of bitterness, or even a “why me” tone in his voice. Daniel was truly humble when he said “tonight isn’t about me, it’s about everyone who needs hope after they served their country”. Daniel stressed the importance of the many types of veterans’ programs. He noted that all programs that assist veterans – sports, mentor programs, assistance for families of veterans, or job training – are necessary. More often that not, veterans worry about their families being helped before they worry about themselves.

Veterans Passport 2 Hope gala

Jeff and Krysten Fogg at the Veterans Passport 2 Hope gala

The vets at the gala were relaxed, enjoying an evening in the company of their own. I’ve been told that it’s tiring to have to explain everything to civilians. The “unspoken” conversations between vets really stood out at this event. Amongst their fellow servicemen and servicewomen, vets can often convey thoughts to one another in the absence of spoken words.

Of course, we can’t begin to imagine the horrors of war, but for the vets, those horrors were a reality. As Daniel spoke, he didn’t even hint at his demons. I have a son who served in battle in 2009, and my family still only knows bits and pieces of his story. Linda confirms that some things just aren’t spoken about. I know vets share their war stories with each other, but not necessarily in the way you and I would talk about being in a traumatic car accident. They’ve been trained to push through the event, to complete the mission because their lives depend upon it. They don’t wallow in self pity, but they do relive their missions over and over again.

New light is being shed regarding how to help veterans live their lives after war time. One of the most powerful methods is vets being with vets. Another rapidly-growing organization called 22 with 22 for the 22 addresses the high level of suicide rates among veterans. These veterans walk 22 km carrying 22 kg in honor of the 22 veterans who take their lives every day.

The ACC Veteran Services Center continues to expands its reach, and we extend an open invitation to our student veterans – as well as veterans in the community – to visit me, Raquel Casavantes (President of the ACC Veterans Club) or Gina Wenzel-Garza (ACC’s VA Certifying Official). Got a few minutes of leisure time? Swing by the Veterans Lounge! Only with the vision and inspiration of those who possess a first-hand understanding of the complexities of veterans’ lives can we continue to comfort and assist those in need. Together, we can be a part of something special.

by Dawn Stratton, Director of the ACC Testing Center and ACC Veterans Club Faculty Advisor