Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Come Visit Your College ... Pt. 1, Dorothy and Clarence Scharbauer, Jr. Student Center

You are invited to celebrate the completion of Midland College’s $41.8 million bond package approved by Midland voters in May 2005. MC will be holding and Open House of New Facilities on our Main Campus, Thursday, October 7, from 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. Admission is FREE, and the public is invited. Refreshments will be served at various locations, and the Midland College Jazz Band performing in Scharbuaer Student Center. Transportation will be provided for campus tours of other new facilities, leaving from Scharbauer Student Center.

Among the facilities sporting a new and expanded look is the Dorothy and Clarence Scharbauer, Jr. Student Center. One of the first four original campus buildings, the Student Center was built in 1975 and then expanded in the fall of 1989. The building was rededicated as the Dorothy and Clarence Scharbauer, Jr. Student Center in May, 1995.

The Carrasco Room, located inside the newly-constructed north section of the Student Center, is available to the public for meetings and other events. Carrasco Room Reservation Form

Thanks to the generosity and support of our community, Midland College continues to grow. The $41.8 million bond passed in May 2005, provided for new construction and rennovation to the Student Center ( map ), and expansion for:
• MC Bookstore
• Counseling and Financial Aid
• Admissions and Career Center
• Testing/Tutoring Center and Registrar
• Carrasco Room and Reception Areas
• Student Support Services
• Cashier and Student Activities
• Snack Bar, Student Lounge and Recreation Areas

Monday, September 27, 2010

Rocket-Powered ...

Here's a photo I took earlier this month when Col. Eileen Collins (an American astronaut in town for MC's Davidson Distinguished Lecture Series), took time out to visit with an auditoium full of Midland schoolchildren.

Students Talk ... We Listen ...

Each year, Your College participates in a nationwide survey of community college students' media preferences and lifestyles. This year's survey kicked-off today, and will continue through Saturday, October 16.

The survey asks questions about how students use media (TV, Radio, web, newspaper, etc.) and spend their time. Participating in this survey also helps MC with its future planning.

It takes 25-30 minutes to complete the survey, and all responses are confidential.

Upon completion of the survey, participants can decide to enter a nationwide drawing for prizes such as a free iPod Touch or a $150 Amazon gift card. Those who decide to enter the drawing will be directed to a different web site to leave your personal information.

CLICK HERE for more information, and to take the survey.

Friday, September 24, 2010

HSI at MC ... Student Success: Lucy Arenivas

Over the course of National Hispanic-Serving Institutions week (September 19-25), we'll provide examples of how Your College is serving Hispanics — and the community as a whole — through student opportunities, and faculty/student success.

Lucy Arenivas
By Nancy Thorne
Contributing Writer

Lucy Arenivas and her students are cooking today. They are making green eggs and ham to accompany their reading of Huevos verdes con jamón. The Spanish version of the Dr. Suess classic Green Eggs and Ham is very important to the bilingual education of her four and five-year-old students, who are all native Spanish speakers.
CLICK HERE to read the rest of Lucy's story.

Your College in Your Community ...

The term "Ivory Tower" dates back to the Bible (Song of Solomon 7:4), and is still in use today ... though its meaning has changed A LOT over the millennia. What was once part of an admiring description of a bride by the bridegroom, is today used as a pejorative to criticize colleges and unversities as places of "sheltered and unworldly intellectual isolation" ... "where intellectuals engage in pursuits that are disconnected from the practical concerns of everyday life."

Take my word for it ... there is NOTHING 'ivory tower' about Your College, where our students, staff and faculty remain very connected, very committed to and supportive of our community.

Don't get me wrong ... we've brought together an outstanding collection of academicians, committed to delivering the very best education to our community ... 100+ academic and technical degree and certificate programs, continuing ed programs, and a bachelor’s degree in Organizational Management.

But at the same time, a look at our schedule for the next couple of weeks gives you an idea of the wide variety of additional pursuits in which we take part, addressing a wide variety of practical concerns in everyday life ...

● September 24, 25: "Car Smash" Benefit for American Diabetes Assn
● September 27: Session 1 of "College Classics" Begins
● September 30: MC Blood Drive
● October 4: MC hosts National SAVE A LIFE Tour
● October 6: Semi-Weekly Campus Recycling Collection
● October 7: MC Open House for the Community
● October 9: Entry Day for Midland Arts Assn Juried Art Exhibit at MC

And that's just over the next two weeks ... there's plenty more to come in the weeks ahead. And that's fine, really ... because this is Your College.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

HSI at MC ... Faculty Success: Julio Valladares

Over the course of National Hispanic-Serving Institutions week (September 19-25), we'll provide examples of how Your College is serving Hispanics — and the community as a whole — through student opportunities, and faculty/student success.

Julio Valladares
By Jeff McDonald
MC Web Editor

It’s a story that has come full-circle for Dr. Julio Valladares, professor of chemistry at Midland College, taking him from the troubled streets of El Salvador, to universities in Canada and the United States, and has now come to the halls of government, education and business back in El Salvador.
CLICK HERE to read the rest of Julio's story.

Volleyball Season at Your College ...

It's fall, and the 2010 season of Lady Chaparral Volleball is under way at Your College. According to this latest report from MC Athletics Director Forrest Allen, the Lady Chaps are off to a good start with an overall record of 17-4 (1-1 in conference play) and moving up to the #14 spot in the NJCAA national rankings. The Lady Chaps have been playing on the road the last couple of weeks ... they'll return to their home court Wednesday evening, September 29, when they host Ranger College at the Al G. Langford Chaparral Center.

In the meantime, here are some links to help you keep up with the 2010 edition of Lady Chaparral Volleyball ...

Fall 2010 Schedule and Results
Meet the MC Lady Chaparral Volleyball Coaches
Download a printable Fall 2010 Pocket Schedule

Good luck in the 2010 season, Lady Chaps!

On a related note, MC Athletics has announced the first-ever Lady Chaparral Volleyball Alumnae Match. The match was the brainchild of several former MC volleyball student-athletes, and will be played on Saturday, October 16, at 6:00 p.m., in conjunction with the Midland College Invitational Volleyball Tournament (October 15-16) at Chap Center.
CLICK HERE for more on this story.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Just One Week from Tonight ...

Just one week from tonight, Your College will be hosting a FREE event, brought to you by the Midland College Foundation.

"Music, Magic & Steinway"
Dedication of Midland College as an All-Steinway School,
featuring a piano concert by Van Cliburn Gold Medalist
José Feghali
Thursday, September 30, 2010, 7:00 p.m.
Al G. Langford Chaparral Center, Midland College

CLICK HERE for more information. Admission is FREE, and no tickets are required. Here is a preview of Feghali and his performance ...

HSI at MC ... Student Success: Sandy Vasquez

Over the course of National Hispanic-Serving Institutions week (September 19-25), we'll provide examples of how Your College is serving Hispanics — and the community as a whole — through student opportunities, and faculty/student success.
Andy Hancock

Sandy Vasquez

For a woman who never thought she was college material, Sandy Vasquez did quite well for herself. “A lot of people are afraid to go to college. I was. It’s not as difficult as people think. The staff and faculty at MC were so supportive and helpful,” she said.
CLICK HERE to read the rest of Sandy's story.

Our Thoughts and Our Prayers ...

... are with two deputies of the Ector County Sheriff's Office, Ricky Tijerina and Steven J. McNeill, as they recover from wounds they received in the line of duty, in the course of an armed standoff in West Odessa this past Friday. One of the deputies is a member of the Midland College family.

"Midland College BAT student, Steven McNeill, was shot in the line of duty on Friday, September 17, in Odessa," Rebecca Bell MC's Dean of Public Information, reports. "Steven is a deputy for the Ector County Sheriff's Department and was shot during a standoff between a citizen and several law enforcement personnel. Sergeant McNeil underwent surgery for a head injury and was released from the hospital on Sunday. He is recovering at home."

Tijerina has also has been released from the hospital, along with a third victim from Friday's standoff, oil company worker Luke Bedrick. Our thoughts and our prayers go out to all three men, to their families, and to all law enforcement personnel across West Texas.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

HSI at MC ... Faculty Success: Tommy Ramos

Over the course of National Hispanic-Serving Institutions week (September 19-25), we'll provide examples of how Your College is serving Hispanics — and the community as a whole — through student opportunities, and faculty/student success.
Tommy Ramos

Tommy Ramos

Season after season, it was noted, the Lady Chap softball team consistently exceeded their own expectations. And while the program has seen the continual replenishment of its on-field talent and assistant coaches, one thing remained constant: head coach Tommy Ramos at the helm.
CLICK HERE to read the rest of Tommy's story.

MC Family Getting Ready to “Step Out for Diabetes”

Midland College is proud to have five employee teams participating in the October 16 American Diabetes Association “Step Out for Diabetes” walk. Dr. Steve Thomas, MC President, is an industry captain, and MC team captains are Stan Jacobs, Associate Vice President of Instruction; Lynda Webb, Dean of Adult and Developmental Education; Michael Fields, Director of Cosmetology; Linda Vest, Mathematics Instructor; and Karen Harris, Technical Program Coordinator.

"Our mission," says the American Diabetes Association, "is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. We lead the fight against the deadly consequences of diabetes and fight for those affected—by diabetes.
• We fund research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes.
• We deliver services to hundreds of communities.
• We provide objective and credible information.
• We give voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes."

The five teams at Your College are already starting their fund-raising efforts. One of the teams, the MC Hammers, will be hosting a “car smash” in the Al G. Langford Chaparral Center parking lot on Friday, September 24, from 11:00 a.m - 1:00 p.m. To release frustrations and reduce stress, MC employees, students, and the community are invited to “take a whack” on a car donated by the MC Automotive Program. Cost of each “whack” is $1 or $25 for unlimited “whacks.”

For more information, please contact Rebecca Bell, MC Dean of Public Information, (432) 685-4556,

Monday, September 20, 2010

HSI at MC ... Student Success: Celestina Bascus

Over the course of National Hispanic-Serving Institutions week (September 19-25), we'll provide examples of how Your College is serving Hispanics — and the community as a whole — through student opportunities, and faculty/student success.
Celestina Bascus

Celestina Bascus
By Karen Lanier
MC Student Publications Instructor

Celestina Bascus is the definition of success in so many ways. But her childhood was no predictor of that success. She was born “dirt poor” in Big Spring. Her first language was Spanish, and she sometimes struggled in the English-speaking world.
CLICK HERE to read the rest of Celestina's story.

Fall 2010 Marks Record High Enrollment at Your College ...

Dr. Michael Chavez, MC's Dean of Enrollment Management, reports a record high fall enrollment! Midland College preliminary enrollment for the fall reporting period totals 6,435! These numbers show an increase of 2 percent over Fall 2009, when enrollment stood at 6,287.

CLICK HERE for the rest of this story.

Registration for the Winter Interim 2010 and Spring 2011 semesters begins in November. There's no time like the present for YOU to get ready, and be a part of Your College ...

" How to Become a Midland College Student and Apply for Financial Aid"

"Como Hacerse un Estudiante de Midland College y Aplicar para Ayuda Financiera"

For more information about MC Admissions contact:
(432) 685-6426

Doing Business, Over Breakfast ...

The MC Business & Economic Development Center (BEDC) promotes economic development in the community by providing comprehensive management, financial, and technical assistance and training to individuals, small businesses, entrepreneurial ventures, and non-profit organizations in the form of seminars and free, confidential counseling.

A regular activity sponsored by BEDC is the monthly Business Networking Breakfast, offer owners of small businesses and minority owned businesses the chance to network with purchasing representatives of large companies and other business owners to exchange information and learn of business opportunities. This month's breakfast takes place Tuesday morning, and shines a "Spotlight on Hispanic Business." CLICK HERE for more information.

Serving Hispanics ... and the Community as a Whole

"The week of September 19-25 has been designated as National Hispanic-Serving Institutions week. The U. S. House of Representatives and Senate plan to introduce and pass resolutions to commemorate this week, which will recognize the contributions of Hispanic-Serving Institutions in their communities," writes Rebecca Bell, MC's Dean, Public Information. "As a Hispanic-Serving Institution, Midland College is proud to join in celebrating, not only Hispanic-Serving Institutions Week, but also Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15-October 15)."

Over the course of this week, we'll provide examples of how Your College is serving Hispanics, and the community as a whole.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Celebrating a Unique Partnership

Here's something I created, celebrating the 10th anniversary of a unique partnership between Midland College and Manor Park, a Midland retirement community. According to Rita Stotts, Director of Child Development at MC, the program has been a huge success. CLICK HERE for a nice write-up on the program, and the anniversary celebration from Ruth Campbell at the Midland Reporter-Telegram.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

BIG Game Tonight for MC Volleyball

I just got a reminder from Forrest Allen, MC's Athletics Director, that the MC Lady Chaparral  volleyball team is headed into a big game tonight, on the road in Borger, Texas.

"The MC Lady Chap volleyball team has moved up eight spots from their NJCAA preseason ranking (23rd) to 15th in the most recent national polls," Allen writes. "The Lady Chaparrals currently have an 11-4 overall record heading into tonight's pivotal WJCAC opener against #13 Frank Phillips College in Borger."

"Tonight's match at FPC will be an old-fashioned grudge match between two long-time foes. Frank Phillips College enters the match with a 8-2 record, and is currently on a seven-match win streak."

Good Luck, Lady Chaps!

Taking Something Good, and Making It Even Better

It's hard for me to offer a completely objective opinion on the topic ... but I think we're doing a pretty good job here at MC, at Your College. Can we do even better? You bet your QEP we can!

"QEP" stands for Quality Enhancement Plan, and there's one in place –— right here, right now –— at MC. According to Dr. Rex Peebles, MC's Vice President of Instruction, "our QEP is designed to address an area of the college that needs improvement, change the way the college 'does business' with regard to the area chosen, and improve student learning."

Dr. Peebles goes on to say we will be addressing three areas through our QEP ... Orientation – What students need to know before they start college; Advising – Academic advising that matches students' intentions; and, Student Success Course – A course teaching basic study skills.

"MCs QEP will take us on a five-year journey to create an even better institution than we currently have," Dr. Peebles concludes, "one that better serves the needs of students without sacrificing academic integrity."

CLICK HERE to learn more about MC's Quality Enhancement Plan.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

What's in a Name?

I had a lot of fun creating this postcard for a past issue of eNews from Midland College. Thought I'd put it to use once again, to remind everyone that the deadline for entering the contest is Wednesday, September 15 ... that's TOMORROW, everyone!

It's one of many, MANY ways that we are encouraged to become a part of the MC community, and to take an active role in developing that community ... and it's fun, too! I'm looking forward to hearing what names have been suggested.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Touching-down in Midland on Thursday

There are so many ways to measure what Your College brings to Your Community. One of them is in the special events we host, bringing leaders in education and science, arts and entertainment, commentary and culture to the Tall City ...

... people like Col. Eileen Collins, USAF (retired). She's a ground-breaker and high-flyer, the first woman to pilot and command an American spacecraft, and she's touching down in Midland this coming Thursday as part of the Davidson Distinguished Lecture Series.

Collins dreamed of becoming a pilot during her childhood in Elmira, New York. Her family lacked the funds to send her away to college, so Collins earned an associate’s degree in mathematics and science at Corning Community College, and then earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and economics from Syracuse University.

Collins then entered the Air Force Undergraduate Pilot Training Program in 1978, the same year that NASA opened the Shuttle program to women. During Collins' year in the Pilot Training Program, the astronaut class visited her base, and she discovered that she had another dream for herself: to become an astronaut. Following her graduation from the Pilot Training Program, Collins spent several years in the Air Force, and earned master's degrees in operations research from Stanford University and space systems management from Webster University. While attending the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards AFB, California, in 1990, she was selected for NASA's astronaut program.

She flew on her first Shuttle mission, STS-63 Discovery, in February 1995, as the first woman ever to pilot a Space Shuttle. She also served as pilot on her second Shuttle mission, STS-84 Atlantis, in May 1997. In July 1999, she achieved another milestone by becoming the first woman ever to command a Shuttle mission, STS-93 Columbia. In July 2005, she flew her final NASA mission as commander of STS-114 Discovery. This was NASA's historic “Return to Flight” mission, the first manned flight following the February 2003 loss of the Shuttle Columbia. Over the course of her four Shuttle flights, she logged over 872 hours in space.

She retired from the U.S. Air Force as a colonel in January 2005 and from NASA in August 2006.

Upon receiving the National Space Trophy in March 2006, Collins spoke of a new dream: "My dream, now, is that people will discover and invent new ways to fly higher, faster, and farther, and that someday humans will travel beyond our solar system. It will be expensive, it will be risky, and we will make mistakes as we go. But we will do it because we are explorers by nature."

Collins’ topic for her September 16 presentation is “Exploring the Great Beyond: From Apollo to Discovery”. The event is FREE and open to the public. Her presentation begins at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, September 16, at the Al G. Langford Chaparral Center. Won't you join us?

You may still order tickets and pick them up in person until Thursday, September 16, 4:00 p.m. in the Midland College Foundation office, Pevehouse Administration Bldg. Call (432) 685-4526 for information.

In May 1996, Steve Davidson and Susan Davidson McClenahan of the Davidson Family Charitable Foundation announced the endowment of the Davidson Distinguished Lecture Series. Twice a year, the Davidson Distinguished Lecture Series, Midland College Foundation, Friends of the Series and Bank of America present speakers whose civic leadership, academic accomplishments and/or public achievements interest, enrich, and enlighten Midland students and citizens. These lectures are FREE to the public.

Past lecturers have included scientist E.O. Wilson, author Bill Bryson, documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, author John Updike, paleontologist Dr. Richard Leakey, commedian/commentator Ben Stein, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, journalist Bill Moyers, historian Shelby Foote, satirist/comedian Mark Russell and many, many more.

Friday, September 10, 2010

MC Family Mourns Loss of Founding President

Dr. Al G. Langford
Today, we are honoring the memory of a singular member of the MC family. Dr. Al G. Langford, founding president of Midland College, passed away at the age of 83, on September 10, 2010.

Langford's career illustrated the growth of the Midland community, and the drive to secure educational opportunities and resources for encouraging that growth. He came to the Permian Basin in 1969 as dean of the Midland Campus of the Permian Basin Junior College District. In 1972, after the Texas Legislature voted approval for the establishment of an independent Midland College district, Dr. Langford was elected president. He retired from the MC Presidency in 1981.

In 1973, Dr. Langford wrote, “Midland College, like all worthwhile enterprises, is the result of a dream and the product of dedicated efforts to overcome obstacles. . . . Midland College is a ‘community college’ in the finest sense of the term. The community has given us solid support. From the beginning, residents showed an above-normal dedication to the college, and they gave unselfishly of their time and talent to its development.”

During his tenure as MC President, Midland College grew from 660 students taking evening classes at Robert E. Lee High School in 1972, to almost 3,000 students taking day and evening classes at the current MC campus location in 1981. An excerpt from a 1972 Midland Reporter-Telegram editorial reads, “Dr. Langford has been president of MC since its inception, and no one has worked harder for the school and its development.” Lance Langford, Dr. Langford’s son, said that Midland College was one of his father’s proudest accomplishments.

Dr. Langford is survived by his wife, Nancy, their three children, and five grandchildren.

Donations may be made to the Dr. Al G. Langford Athletic Endowment Fund, through the Midland College Foundation, 3600 N. Garfield, Midland, TX 79705. You may call the Foundation office at (432) 685-4526 for more information. If you wish to make an online donation, CLICK HERE. Or, you can mail your donation to the Foundation.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


Welcome to "Your College" Blog. Our goal is to provide a forum for the Midland community to come together and share their thoughts concerning Midland College ... Your College. We are lining up a number of contributors from among MC students, faculty and staff, who will offer their first-hand insight into your school, and what it has to offer you ... and the community as a whole.

We hope you'll stop-in regularly to comment and share your own thoughts and ideas, to ask questions, to suggest answers, and to help us grow.