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August 25, 2011

Dear MCCC Faculty and Staff,

Welcome back to MCCC, and to our Fall 2011 semester. We have been hard at work throughout the summer, and are ready to welcome our students.

We are now recruiting for our Aviation Flight Technology Program! We are very excited about our new partnership with Royal Karina Air Service, which will provide flight training for our students at Trenton-Mercer Airport.  Details here.

We are expanding our course delivery sites through two new agreements.  At Hightstown High School, we are offering ESL classes beginning this semester. At Hopewell Valley Central High School, we are offering five credit courses beginning October 4, open to all members of the community, including high school students age 16 and up who are recommended by a teacher or counselor. Details here

Many items in our Strategic Plan’s first year have been completed.  This year’s Annual Report will use the Strategic Plan as its basic organizational structure.  If you have an interesting completed project to report, please contact Saveria Symons.

The Foundations of Excellence Steering Committee reported at the College Assembly on its work last year and the beginning of the implementation stage. Many of you will be involved in implementing this important initiative.

A new task force led by John Simone is working on integrating Foundations of Excellence and Process Mapping into the Enrollment Management process. This group has started to utilize what we have learned to benefit students.


In addition to the good news, I would like to remind all of some important messages. Faculty, please inform your students:

Always wear your MCCC ID card.
Please help us keep the campus clean by using appropriate trash containers and recycling bottles and paper.
Help be our eyes and ears by reporting any theft or vandalism on campus.
Smoking on campus is only permitted in smoking huts.

Also, please make it a requirement that all students use their student e-mail accounts as part of their class assignments. Only by using their account will they receive our important messages. Note, their Mercer Mail account can be forwarded to their personal e-mail address.


In order to avoid problems with traffic, parking, etc., it is essential that all major college events, and external events scheduled on our campuses, be included on our main events calendar, which is administered by Brad Kent of the Marketing Department.  We now have a new online submission form so everyone can submit their events easily.  Notification will go to Marketing, Public Information, Facilities and Security staff. The form is on the MLink home page under “Event Notification.”  Link here.


Our students returned from another fruitful Study Tour, this time to Paris in July.  A tour is being planned to South Africa for next July.  If you have ideas for future tours, please contact Andrea Lynch.

A note on staffing changes:  Debbie Kell is transitioning out and is working half time, while Linda Scherr has been appointed Faculty Assistant to the Vice President. She will be taking on the duties of online instruction, faculty development and assessment. We also recently welcomed our new Director of Nursing, Madeline Gervase.

In order to better serve our students and more efficiently use office space, the offices of Transfer and Career Services, PASS, and Financial Aid have been relocated. Financial Aid now occupies the space formerly used by PASS, and some PASS offices moved to the former Transfer and Career Services space. The Transfer and Career Services office has moved into the former Financial Aid area.

We also ask everyone to encourage students to follow MCCC on Facebook or Twitter. This is an excellent way for us to reach students and get their feedback. Links to all of our social media sites are accessible from the home page, bottom left corner. 

And a reminder about internal communication: Broadcast e-mail and the M-Newsletter are official college communications.  Broadcast e-mail is reserved for items that are urgent or of high importance to the entire college community.  Most news should go in the weekly M-Newsletter, which includes important messages. Use the online forms at MLink to submit your broadcasts or news.  The M-Newsletters are archived on MLink for your convenience.


Thanks again to all of you who contributed to our Annual Campaign. This campaign funds our mini-grant program. This year’s donors will receive blue travel mugs which can be filled free at our cafeterias September 19 through October 14. I am pleased to announce the winners of our mini-grants:

  • Dr. Gianna Durso-Finley and Dr. Carol Denise Bork: Dedicated Smart Seminar Rooms for the Mercer Honors Program

  • Helen Tanzini and Yvonne Greenbaun: Computational Chemistry:  An Intersection of Mathematics and Chemistry

  • Michael Sullivan and Rodney Hargis: The Mobile Student via Mercer’s Virtual College

There will be another opportunity to submit mini-grants applications in mid-year.


I hope you will join us for several special events this fall.  On Sept. 9 at 11 a.m., we will host our 9-11 commemoration outside the Student Center.  Lectures “Unity Through Diversity,” will feature speakers from major religions and area scholars, including MCCC faculty, on Monday, Sept. 12, at noon at Kelsey Theatre, and Wednesday, Sept. 14, at 6:30 p.m. in Kerney Hall.


The Heart Walk at Mercer County Park is set for September 11, with sign-in starting at 8 a.m.  Our annual Golf Classic for our Student Athlete Scholarship Fund is set for Oct. 4 at Mercer Oaks.  The Floyd Fest Foundation fundraiser, a Princeton outreach event, is set for Oct. 16 at the Nassau Inn.

Our annual Open House/Board Report to the Community is set for Nov. 10. We are now accepting nominations for the honorees, so please submit your ideas. (See the broadcast e-mail of August 23.)


Kelsey Theatre’s new season has been announced.  Individual tickets also go on sale beginning August 26.  MCCC staff and faculty receive a discounted rate of $6 per ticket.

And, I invite you to join in increasing our college spirit both on and off campus this semester by wearing our Mercer gear -- sweatshirts, t-shirts, hats etc.

Again, a warm welcome to all as we prepare for a productive semester.


Patricia C. Donohue