Letter to Faculty & Staff from Richard Zollinger


January 2016

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Welcome back to a new semester and a new year!  I hope you have all enjoyed the break and found a few quiet moments of peace and relaxation.  2015 was full of ‘disruptive innovations,’ and although those innovations can make us feel uncomfortable at times, I thank you for the patience, support, and leadership that each of you exhibited through the year.  It’s because of your hard work and positive attitude that we have continued to find new ways to bolster student success and completion.


Looking toward 2016, we see the dust begin to settle as we grow more comfortable with a number of our recent ‘disruptive innovations.’  Progress is being made as we continually find new ways to help our students be successful.  Woven throughout all of our work is our continued commitment to the priorities of Access, Quality, Student Success, and Completion.

Developmental Education (Access, Student Success)

Over the past several years, enormous changes have been made to developmental education, including the structure of courses and how students are placed.  These changes have had a positive impact on student success and have greatly reduced the time students spend completing their developmental sequence.

  • Developmental Math: Of the students who placed into developmental math coursework (DMA) in fall 2014, 72% attempted their DMA course in their first term.  Of the fall 2014 developmental cohort, 12% completed their developmental math sequence and their college-level math course within two terms.  Of the students who placed into developmental math in fall 2010, prior to reform efforts, only 54% attempted their developmental math in the first term.  Of those, 30% completed the sequence and progressed to their college-level course over a period of 2.19 years.
  • Developmental Reading/English: Comparing the 2014 and 2010 cohorts, 78% of the 2014 cohort who placed into developmental reading and English (DRE) attempted their DRE course in their first term, compared to only 64% of the 2010 cohort.  In addition, 37% of the fall 2014 cohort completed the developmental sequence and the college-level English course within two terms.  Of the 2010 cohort, 43% had completed this after four years.  Also, 59.4% of the developmental reading and English course grades in fall 2010 were passing grades (defined as A or B).  In fall 2014, the percentage of students earning a passing grades (defined as 80% or higher) had increased to 66.4%.


General Education/Core4 (Quality)

Under the leadership of Joey Anderson, Jeri Guido, Terina Lathe, and Shantell Strickland-Davis the faculty-led General Education/Core4 Alignment Initiative Committee has been working hard throughout the fall.  This group, which includes a diverse group of faculty from across the college, has developed a plan for aligning and assessing the General Education and Core4 goals.  Opportunities to learn more about this plan will be available through the term. A pilot is planned for fall 2016.


eLearning (Quality)

Thank you to the many faculty and staff who worked to develop a new strategic plan for online learning.  The plan promotes strengthened professional development for faculty, expanded course offerings with high quality learning experiences, exemplary support services for students, and avenues for helping students make good decisions related to their preparation for online coursework.  This fall, we also welcomed Dr. Sara Baber as the Executive Director of eLearning.  Sara brings with her a wealth of experience in online education and is excited to be part of our team.


Success through Academic Reporting (STAR) (Student Success)

Last fall, Success through Academic Reporting (STAR) expanded to all 8-week, 12-week, and 16-week courses.  As a reminder, the goal of the STAR program is to improve the success of students through enhanced student support and ongoing communication.  Faculty submit STAR reports at two critical points during the term, early in the term and the midterm point, which then drive interventions and subsequent support for students who need it the most.  During the fall 2015 term, 63,415 STAR reports were generated for 16,972 unique students. Of the students registered for the fall 2015 term, 87.09% received at least one STAR report.


Faculty PDP (Quality)

After many months of faculty-led discussions and input, fall 2015 saw the introduction of a new Performance Development Plan (PDP) for faculty.  The new tool emphasizes the professional growth and goals of the faculty member.  The 2015-2016 academic year represents the first year of the new PDP.


Student Opinion Survey (Quality)

As part of our ongoing efforts to maintain quality learning experiences for our students, a new student opinion survey was launched this fall.  The new survey is available exclusively online, making it easier for students to provide valuable feedback.  Thank you for your efforts in encouraging students to complete this survey.


The initiatives and programs highlighted above only scratch the surface of the innumerable ways you bring Access, Quality, Student Success, and Completion into each classroom every day.  I invite you to share the ways you embrace these priorities in new and innovative ways, as they will inspire us all.  Thank you for the creativity, passion, and enthusiasm you bring to your work and our students!


I would also like to welcome the following faculty and staff to the Learning Unit.  These energetic individuals will help us to continue our emphasis on quality programs and student success.  I am including list of all new hires from August 7, 2015 – December 31, 2015.

New Hires

Position Title Employee's Name Department
Customer Service Representative Amy Salmeron CCE
Administrative Assistant II Adria Alexander CCE
Chief High School Equivalency Examiner Debra White College & Career Readiness
Curriculum Coordinator, DRE Rene Moore ACA, English & Humanities
Executive Director, eLearning Sara Baber Professional Development & eLearning
Instructional Developer II Luvon Hudson Professional Development & eLearning
Instructional Developer II Michael Moore CCE
Instructional Lab Facilitator, Baking & Pastry Arts Sandra Birmingham Hospitality Education
Instructional Office Assistant Shovon Wilson Business & Accounting
Instructor, American Sign Language Ginger Leon Professional Careers
Instructor, Biology Jasmin Feimster Sciences
Instructor, Biomedical Equipment Technology Claude Hargrove Engineering Technologies
Instructor, Electrical Engineering Technology John Gresser Engineering Technologies
Instructor, Respiratory Therapy (Clinical Coordinator) Cherri Crabtree Health & Human Services
Instructor, Welding Technology Brian Lucas Applied Technologies
Program Coordinator Amy Galla College & Career Readiness
Program Coordinator Sarah Vespignani CCE
Program Coordinator Shannon Holbrook College & Career Readiness
Project Specialist John LaTour CCE
Project Specialist, EMS Deborah Parrish Public Safety
Recruiter Senior Toria Grant Early Childhood Education

Employees On The Move

Position Title
Employee's Name Department
Instructor, Baking, Pastry & Arts Tanya Beauvais Hospitality Education
Program Developer Steven Alexander CCE
Program Coordinator, FESTO Alexis Frisinger Engineering Technologies

Best wishes for a wonderful spring semester!

Richard Zollinger

Vice President for Learning & Workforce Development
Central Piedmont Community College