Eyes on You Award

Eyes on You WINNERS for Fall 2015

Left to Right: Sherrill Holmes, Sandy Daniel, Nick Bonevac, Jennifer Conway, and Debbie Higgins


Carl Arrington was nominated by Lauren Jacksina, who said, “You may not know who Carl is because of his unassuming nature, but Carl is a great asset to the College.  Young, intelligent, hip, and relatable; Carl is often mistaken for a student upon entering the programming classes that he teaches. Each time a student walks in the office looking for him, he knows their name, what they are there for, and greets them with a come-on-in attitude.  He is truly an individual that a student would want to aspire to be. He is well-rounded, ambitious and a great role model for all of us.”

Tony Bateman was nominated by Terry McMicking, who said, “Tony teaches Fire Protection Technology for the CPCC Public Safety Division. The students in his classes are doing service-learning projects for the Charlotte Fire Department. I don’t know Tony very well, but from our brief encounters and what I’ve overheard in the hallway, I’ve gotten the impression that Tony is very committed to helping his students succeed. In speaking with his co-workers, I learned that he uses his personal time to visit fire stations throughout Charlotte to advise students that are active firefighters in our program. Tony will even pick up their transcripts and personally deliver them to the general advisor for review. Tony is one of the most dedicated faculty members in ensuring student success.”

Nick Bonevac was nominated by Khursheed Wankadiya, who said, “In the Sciences division the Lab Coordinator is pivotal to student success. Lab coordinators deserve our special attention, because often, they fly under the radar as they quietly organize and have everything running like a well-oiled machine. Nick has meticulously supervised thousands of students and steered them around a room filled with high voltage gadgets and all kinds of hazards. He orchestrates the activities of all types of learners within a matter of a few hours. As soon as one batch of students exits, the entire set-up has to be dismantled and reconstructed for the next group. This has continued flawlessly 12 months of the year, for the past 20+ years. He is the quintessential role model for future engineers and scientists, with his perseverance, superior organizational skills, intellectual stamina, work ethic, and nerdiness. The Eyes on You Award is a wonderful celebration of our many unsung heroes, particularly those like Nick, who shy away from the limelight because of their innate humility and because they are too busy rolling up their sleeves doing the heavy lifting.”

Yvonne Brown was nominated by Doug Cobb, who said, “Yvonne’s title of Administrative Assistant II is inadequate in describing all that she does for Community Relations and Marketing Services. One of her primary responsibilities is to work with the production manager in bidding out jobs and securing print vendors for work created by the department. That’s no small task considering our department has produced over 1,100 printed marketing pieces since January. But it doesn’t end there; she then assists with getting proofs and samples approved and delivered to individuals throughout our six campuses. Yvonne is a tremendously valuable member of our department as well as a delight to work with. Her professionalism, humor, and New Yorker sensibilities have helped define the spirit of our department.”

Marcus Caldwell was nominated by Scottie Pankey, who said, “Marcus’s demeanor was always sincere, and he often encouraged co-workers on peak registration days when we were tired and hoarse from talking on the phone non-stop. Occasionally, he received calls from grateful students voicing appreciation for one of his team members. He would take the time to share the kind words by email to the team and the supervisors. He understands morale and how important that credit be given even when he was not the one receiving the credit. In his work with our students, he always maintained a calm self-assured voice in the face of adversity and was often able to bring about a positive outcome when none seemed likely. With a compassionate and caring heart, Marcus Caldwell is indeed, a huge asset to the college.”

Margaret Chan was nominated by one of her colleagues, who said, “After retiring from a career as a Systems Analyst, Margaret decided to pursue a degree in Architectural Technology. She discovered a true aptitude for Computer Aided Design, which she now shares with our students. She is very open to new ideas, and she is not afraid of new technology. As soon as she heard that the department may start teaching 3DS MAX (rendering and animation software), she ordered a book and started learning it so that she could help students in the lab. Her ability to collaborate across units is phenomenal. She is actually employed by both the Architectural Technology Departments and the Interior Design Departments, so she is available for full and part-time staff from both departments, two different program chairs, two different division directors (Construction Technology and the Art department), and two different deans on two campuses.”

Jennifer Conway was nominated by Meera Vora, who said, “My work at CPCC does not require much interaction with Jennifer, but the reason I have selected her is because when I asked several students who do they think has made a difference in their experience at CPCC, Jennifer's name was mentioned many times. Each student I talked to said that Jennifer went out of her way to help them succeed. I also talked to her co-workers, and they said that Jennifer works tirelessly to ensure that students are equipped to succeed. It’s not unusual for students to stop by her office several times a day to get advice or guidance. Jennifer always provides a listening ear, objective feedback, and unconditional support for students’ success in whatever it is they’re pursuing. Positive experience encourages people to work hard and learn, and I believe Jennifer provides that experience to students involved in her program.”

Sandy Daniel was nominated by Stephanie Sabbagh, who said, “Sandy is one of the most caring employees at CPCC, and she always puts students first. A few years ago, she learned that several students were struggling financially, so she began collecting snacks and toiletries for students in her department. Over time, she asked other staff and faculty for donations and now offers these services campus-wide (Merancas). She continually replenishes items in the baskets so that our students are getting the nourishment they need. Students leave ‘thank you’ notes for the items that are provided. Not only is Sandy helping students with their basic needs, she is giving them hope and letting them know that others care for them.”

Kelly Dyer was nominated by Jordan Dalto, who said, “Kelly is the renaissance woman of the financial aid department.  She manages to be deep into her work while being one of the most kind and helpful people I have had the pleasure of knowing. Kelly has implemented many new processes to the financial aid office that were needed due to changing federal regulations and increasing student population.  She has been vital to making sure CPCC is following policies while improving the customer experience.  Student wait times have decreased tremendously, and employees are able to process financial aid students quicker than ever before. Kelly strives in making sure students are taken care of so that they can focus on their education.  She knows when students are anxious about their financial situation it is the difference between dropping out and continuing the path to success. I am thankful to work with such a compassionate person.”

Michael Fitzgerald was nominated by Paulo Brito, who said, “Michael Fitzgerald is an asset to the shipping and receiving department. He is proactive in helping all of the employees by assuring specific standards and procedures are met. He is approachable and very knowledgeable in his position. He assists those that need assistance and trains others to share their knowledge to help the department run efficiently. His ability to share his knowledge is one of the keys to the team’s success, and I believe that he is a good example of an outstanding leader.”

Chad Fortner was nominated by Brian Sexton, who said, “Chad enjoys assisting students and staff in utilizing the various services the library provides. Since joining the library's staff in April, Chad's skills and expertise in using various forms of technology have become invaluable and he doesn't mind sharing his knowledge with his coworkers. Whenever he's asked a question, he's more than willing to help find an answer. With regards to students, Chad has often been called by myself and other staff to assist with issues which we aren't familiar with. He often stays with a student until a question or issue has been resolved.”

Debbie Higgins was nominated by Margaret Machovec, who said, “Debbie is one of the most patient, approachable, kind, and genuine individuals with whom I have ever worked.  She started at CPCC as an instructor in the simulation lab and built the simulation lab from the ground up.  Debbie is an anchor for our department.  She is well respected by faculty, staff, and the students.  Debbie is always calm and whenever someone asks her for help, she drops what she is doing and offers help--with a smile!  To our pure enjoyment and relief, she appropriately finds humor in many situations.  Debbie is a go-to person for advice on classroom, student, faculty, and college-wide matters.  She is fair, consistent, and ethical.  She is very giving of herself every day and models caring for us all.”

Sherrill Holmes was nominated by Terri Ashcraft, who said, “Sherrill Holmes is the epitome of a team player. As the Maintenance Coordinator for Facilities Services, she supports us all from Management to Maintenance.  She is not only one of the key 'go to' people for the department, but Sherrill is one that if she doesn't know the answer, she will find the answer or get you the information to get to the answer.  Sherrill is an excellent communicator, she has great ideas and is always willing to find better ways to make the daily processes and work flow smoother and less complicated for all involved.  Sherrill also works with Facilities Services' work study students. I can see how patient she is with the students, no matter their age or background, she trains them to do what is needed for the department and for themselves. Sherrill is a hard working team member for our department and the College.  I believe that all her efforts eventually lead to a positive experience for our students.”

Jennifer Leigh was nominated by Emma Reynolds, who said, “Jennifer exemplifies outstanding leadership and customer service skills toward her colleagues at the College.  Specifically,  Jennifer provides an abundant amount of assistance to the Services Corporation staff with the STEM Summer Experience payroll procedures, payroll that consists of more than 30 employees.  Jennifer is incredibly kind and possesses great patience. She focuses on the needs of her colleagues all the while ensuring she is adhering to College policies.  Jennifer seems to excel at her job seamlessly and with great ease. She is a wealth of knowledge!”

JoAnn Murray was nominated by one of her colleagues, who said, “JoAnn is one of the most helpful employees that you can come across at CPCC.  Her door is always open to always assist whether it be a current, past, or potential student. With her many years of experience working within the college, if she is unable to assist, she can get you in contact with the person who can. JoAnn is a lifelong learner who is always taking some type of course to elaborate on her vasts experiences and knowledge.  She is the consummate employee who makes sure her deadlines are met and is focused on being a supportive member of Admissions team.  Wherever she is needed she will rise to the occasion to support.”

Christie Rife was nominated by Heidi Huntley, who said, “Christie is the backbone to our DRE department. She is the first point of contact for most of the full-time and part-time faculty. She is constantly training, answering questions, and assisting faculty as well as students when they need a helping hand. She is constantly aligning our vertical teaming methods, updating Blackboard, research methodologies, and instructional methods to ensure that our team is doing our best for our students. She advocates for all learners, is a reflective practitioner, and seeks guidance from our entire team. Christie is fundamental to our DRE team.”

Linda White was nominated by Karen Schwabe, who said, “Linda is passionate about her students. She is dedicated, thoughtful, and compassionate.  She is a true team player and always willing to help whenever or wherever she is needed. This hardworking faculty works diligently to make her students feel comfortable in her classes and to be certain they fully experience the learning process. She also serves tirelessly and consistently on many College committees.  She is an expert in all things CPCC. She is an expert because she cares.  She is also wonderful at resolving student issues providing guidance, support, and advisement. She is patient and kind and consistently looking out for students.  She always thinks what is best for students.”

Eyes on You Archive