Enjoy Spring Break

Spring Break officially begins tomorrow Monday, March 28 and we will resume normal operations on April 4. I hope everyone has a well-earned relaxing and safe spring break!

Cabinetry and Furniture Technology Program Spotlight
Palomar’s Cabinetry and Furniture Technology (CFT) program was featured in, The Furniture Society’s newsletter (found here). The Furniture Society is the premier non-profit organization representing, promoting, and connecting furniture makers, designers, collectors, curators, educators, and manufacturers from around the world. Our CFT program prepares students to open their own woodworking business or become employed by a high-end woodworking related business. The program is 60 years old and features world-class facilities, phenomenal instructors, and a dedicated and talented student body. Palomar is very proud of this program and it’s great to see its excellence being recognized.

The Week in Review
Campus Engagement
This week, I was able to present at two Women’s History Month events. The first event was Rescatando Suenos/Rescuing Dreams de Latinas. I had the privilege of co-presenting with Dr. Sabrina Menchaca. The topic of the workshop was about accepting self-identity through an interactive process and building resilience by reconnecting with our dreams. We discussed self-care and facilitating personal and professional growth. The second event was Continuing Education Tips for Education Professionals. At this workshop, panel members shared ideas and best practices for working professionals who have decided to continue their education. We examined and discussed the competing priorities working professionals face. This presentation was organized and hosted by Cheryl Kearse. Thank you to both of these powerful women for providing the space for these important and timely discussions.

I also met with members of the Asian Pacific Alliance in Higher Education (APAHE) this week. I appreciate Angela Kong, Gary Sosa, Joseph Limer, and Monica Diego Schmidt for the gift of their time and insightful perspective. During our meeting we discussed institutional priorities that would support APAHE’s mission. APAHE is a collective group of students, employees, and community members dedicated to creating safe and courageous spaces to learn, network, present research, and provide supportive resources for teaching and learning. They are committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion and are passionate about sharing cultural identities and advocating for social justice education. If you are interested in learning more about the group, you can find their webpage here.

I also had the awesome opportunity to meet with the ESL Department. I met virtually with the larger group, and then I toured the department in person. I am absolutely amazed by the incredible work that happens in ESL. Thank you for the invite to learn more about the department, and a special thank you to Tracy Fung for coordinating the visit. I also met with the Pride Center this week, and we discussed upcoming events they are currently planning (including the Progressive Pride Flag unveiling). Great job Abbie Cory and Dylan Davison. I always enjoy meeting with student leaders, and this week I met with Student Trustee Rachel Alazar to discuss specific student concerns and to generate ideas to address them. Also, Faculty hiring continues, and I am excited about what these new hires will bring to Palomar College.

On Saturday, I had the incredible privilege of attending Mr. John Diaz’s Memorial. Mr. Diaz retired from Palomar in 2015, after serving as an Instructional Computer Lab Technician for 16 years. He was a highly decorated 26-year Veteran. His recognitions included the awarding of a Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, and Silver Star. Palomar employees Jessica Horn, Robert Sedillo and I had the privilege of presenting the re-issuance of his Silver Star to the family at the service.

Community Engagement
This week, I attended the California Community College League of California’s CEO Webinar. The League provided an update on the state budget and the association’s efforts to advocate for districts in this critical budget year. I also met with three different outside organizations who are interested in partnering with Palomar, and I will have share more once the relationships become more finalized.

On Thursday, we held our Weekly COVID-19 Update Meeting to answer questions and provide updates. Please note, after spring break these meetings will be held on a bi-weekly schedule. The meetings will be held on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month. In case you missed the meeting, you can find the recording here.

The District is recommending COVID-19 testing for all employees, and students, who are traveling outside of California and the United States during spring break. During spring break the COVID-19 testing site at the main campus will only be open on Tuesday, March 29 from 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. All other testing sites will be closed during the spring break. Appointments are required and can be made through the Cleared4 platform. Our onsite testing schedule will resume normal operating hours on Monday, April 4. The testing schedule is noted here. Also, the San Diego County Department of Public Health Services continues to offer free COVID-19 testing. For your convenience, the County’s testing schedule can be found here.

Comet of the Week
Our Comet of the Week is Jason Bennett, our new COVID Administrator, who has done a great job onboarding our new campus COVID Monitors. These monitors have been helping students around the campus with COVID-clearance issues and answering questions. Thank you for all your hard work in this area Jason!

Have a great upcoming week. Go Comets!

For pictures of the various events, follow:

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