COVID-19 Updates

Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 5:15 pm

Lap Top Loan Program

Miramar College has purchased 300 laptops to be loaned out to students in need of such technology so that they may continue to pursue their academic goals with little interruption.

These laptops will be distributed to students on Saturday, April 18 from 10am-12pm in front of the college’s P3 parking structure just off of Westview Parkway.

To request a laptop loan, students should go to the following link and complete the request form. 

Should the number of requests exceed the number of available laptops, the college will create a wait list and make every effort to obtain additional laptops. Students selected to receive a laptop will be able to borrow the laptop for Spring, Summer and Fall 2020 academic terms, provided that they are enrolled at San Diego Miramar College for each term.

Those who are selected to receive a laptop will be sent more detailed information via email about how to pick-up the laptop from campus.

The Miramar College Foundation provided $8,000.00 in initial funding for the purchase. The College is also using funding from its San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund to complete the purchase.

Associated Student Government has pledged $3,000 toward the Emergency Fund.

If you’d like to contribute to the San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund please click on this provided: http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/foundation


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 3:13 pm

UChat Feature Connects Students to Campus Resources During Pandemic

One of the busiest services on a college campus takes place late summer into early fall when the Outreach Team needs to make certain students are enrolled and ready to begin their college careers. Eleven strong, the Miramar College Outreach Team is the gatekeeper for most new students who arrive on an unfamiliar campus. Navigating ones first year of college can be tough especially during a worldwide pandemic. However, a new feature at Miramar College is helping students connect to the campus even while most Miramar College classes and services remain remote. UChat, located on the school’s Outreach and School Relations webpage, gives students a chance to connect with an Outreach Team member or mentor Monday through Friday.

“Our Career Center had the tool first,” said Jennifer Peña, outreach coordinator at Miramar College. “And once COVID-19 hit and we were inundated by emails and we knew we had to move to remote operations, we decided as a staff that we had to have this feature on our page.”

Here’s how it works. Students can visit the Outreach & School Relations page here http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/outreach#. Once there, look at the right side of your computer. You’ll notice a tab pop out with 11 smiling faces ready to help. Click on the tab’s arrow and see which employee is online and ready to answer your questions. You can also access the chat via your mobile devices.

“We started this feature at the end of July,” said Peña. “In that time, we have seen several students reach out with all sorts of questions from how to enroll to how do I apply for financial aid?” Two other departments at Miramar College also use UChat-Financial Aid and the Career Center. “If a student has a question that we can’t answer, often times we are able to send them to another department’s UChat feature for better service,” said Peña.

The Outreach Team staffs its UChat feature Monday-Thursday from 10am-4pm and 10am to 1pm on Friday’s. If Peña isn’t there to answer your question, one of Outreach’s ten other representatives will be there. “We assign outreach mentors to the chat for 4 hour blocks,” said Peña. “These mentors are either current or former students who are well trained to answer questions from current and prospective students”

As a fluent Spanish speaker, Peña can also help those speaking Spanish, a demographic that makes ups more than a quarter of Miramar College’s population. “If a Spanish speaking student or parent logs onto to UChat and I am not online, they can always send me an email and I will respond.”

A majority of the students who have used the UChat function since its debut in late July are high school students either about to start college as a San Diego Promise student or looking to take a dual enrollment class during the upcoming semester. The UChat features also appears on the college’s CCAP webpage, San Diego Promise page, and the College’s Assessment Office page.

The Financial Aid department has 4 representatives available to answer questions. You can find their UChat link at http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/financial-aid#. Due to staffing issues, the Financial Aid department does not post UChat hours. Check out our social media platforms for available times. Meantime, the Career Center has 8 representatives to work its UChat Monday-Thursday 8am-6pm and Friday’s 8am-3pm. http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/careerservices

 


Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 4:28 pm

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego:  https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/.

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego.

If students need help with this process please have them call Student Health Services at 619-388-7881.

Colleges and University Student COVID Education can be found at COVID-Education@sdcounty.ca.gov.  They also post about:

  • How to stay healthy during COVID
  • Mental Health during COVID
  • Why should you wear a mask?
  • COVID Testing site information
  • Much more

Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 3:49 pm

City of San Diego COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program

The City of San Diego announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego. 

For more information visit COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego

 

https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/

 


Wednesday, July 15, 2020 - 10:33 am

Chancellor's Update for July 14, 2020

I hope this message finds everyone well and functioning effectively in all the new roles and formats we have to work with.  It seems incredible that, with the exception of a few key employee groups, we have all been teaching and working remotely since March 23!

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

As was predicted, the COVID-19 contagion is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing. In the past 14 days, California saw 107,776 new cases of the virus, bringing total cases to date to 336,508. Also, in the past 14 days, there were 1,107 deaths, bringing the death total to 7,087. As you can see, this is a very serious situation that requires our most careful and thoughtful response.  Let me bring you up-to-date about the current situation and our plans.

STATEWIDE & COUNTY DECISIONS

San Diego County has been placed on the statewide watch-list because of the surge in coronavirus cases, and must comply with the state’s directives as conveyed by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), as prescribed by Dr. Sonia Y. Angell, State Public Health Officer and CDPH Director. Here is the current status of CDPH requirements.

“Effective July 13, 2020, ALL counties must close indoor operations in these sectors:

  • Dine-in restaurants
  • Wineries and tasting rooms
  • Movie theaters 
  • Family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys, miniature golf, batting cages and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Cardrooms

Additionally, bars, brewpubs, breweries, and pubs must close all operations both indoor and outdoor statewide, unless they are offering sit-down, outdoor dine-in meals. Alcohol can only be sold in the same transaction as a meal.

Counties that have remained on the County Monitoring List for 3 consecutive days will be required to shut down the following industries or activities unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up (San Diego County is on this list).

  • Fitness centers
  • Worship services
  • Protests
  • Offices for non-essential sectors
  • Personal care services, like nail salons, body waxing and tattoo parlors
  • Hair salons and barbershops

·Malls

This order shall go into effect immediately. These closures shall remain in effect until I (that is, Dr. Angell) determine it is appropriate to modify the order based on public health conditions.  Outdoor operations may be conducted under a tent, canopy, or other sun shelter but only as long as no more than one side is closed, allowing sufficient outdoor air movement.

I will continue to monitor the epidemiological data and will modify the sectors that may be open both statewide and in counties on the Monitoring List as required by the evolving public health conditions. If I determine that it is appropriate to reopen, close, or modify the operations of any additional sectors, those sectors will be posted at: https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap-counties/.  My guidance mandating the wearing of face coverings and my guidance prohibiting gatherings continue to apply statewide, except as specifically permitted in other orders or guidance documents. To prevent further spread of COVID-19 to and within other jurisdictions within the State, Californians should not travel significant distances but should stay close to home.”

While higher education is not mentioned specifically in this set of directives, universities, four-year colleges, and community colleges are still on the original closure list, although with the flexibility to offer some programs and program components on campus where necessary.  Plans in this regard must be proposed and reviewed by the Department of Public Health.  The context in which we are operating requires that we exercise great care regarding anything we do on-campus or at District Office sites.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered primarily online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand some on-campus components for selected classes that require laboratory, clinical, or career-technical hands-on sessions. The health requirements for these classes will be strict, including temperature checks, PPE, social-distancing, disinfecting, etc..  I must emphasize, however, that because of the volatility of the COVID-19 situation, everyone must be prepared to make quick changes during the semester, reverting to the online format if necessary.  Additional courses have also been approved through the curriculum process so that they can be offered in a distance education (DE ) format. This is a difficult ride which will tax everyone’s patience at times, especially if changes occur during the semester, but it is a necessary to be as agile and flexible as possible as we align our class schedules during this unpredictable pandemic.

Here is the current plan:

City, Mesa, and Miramar Colleges, and Continuing Education will offer the vast majority of approximately 6,500 class sections in the fall 2020 semester online.  The exception is hard-to-convert classes in programs that may require technical machinery, hands-on applied instruction, specific work or laboratory environments that may not be viable without some face-to-face instruction.  Hard to convert classes offered in the fall 2020 may be, but are not limited to, those in industry sectors of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers in the State of California as outlined by Governor Gavin Newsom.  Industry sectors include healthcare, transportation and logistics, energy, and communications and information technology.

City College offerings this fall include nursing, electricity, and machine-tool classes through hybrid formats (on-campus and online).  City College has 23 newly-approved distance education courses online including:  communications studies, exercise science, humanities, math, commercial music, nutrition, philosophy, photography, and Spanish.  The majority of classes are online.

Mesa College is offering culinary arts, dental assisting, radiologic technology, animal health technology, registered veterinary technician, and some biology and chemistry courses through hybrid formats.  Mesa College has 83 newly-approved DE courses including: architecture, building construction, culinary arts, child development, computer information systems, education, dance, history, math, exercise science, physical therapist assistant, and veterinary technology animal health.  The majority of classes are online.

Miramar College is offering administration of justice, automotive technology, aviation, aviation maintenance technology, fire protection technology, medical laboratory technician training through hybrid formats.  Miramar has 22 newly-approved distance education courses, including administration of justice, emergency medical technician, chemistry, child development, exercise science, fire technology, mathematics, and paralegal studies.  The majority of classes are online. 

Continuing Education course offerings have been designed to be fully online except for healthcare courses that require onsite clinical/laboratory skill simulations.

As stated earlier, given the precariousness of COVID-19, the offering of on-campus classes will take place in accordance with state requirements and San Diego County of Public Health guidelines.  Plans are underway to adhere to safety protocols and address contingencies in order to ensure there is continuity in instruction in the fall.

FALL SPORTS

Because of the persistence of COVID-19, the California Community Colleges Athletics Association (CCCAA) has determined that it is not safe to proceed with intercollegiate sports in the fall.  All such sports have been postponed and will be offered in the spring, if it is safe to do so.  This decision affects the following sports in our District.

                                                Mesa College

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis                           Women’s Softball

Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis                     Women’s Badminton

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Track & Field                Women’s Beach Volleyball

Women’s Water Polo                                      Men’s Swim & Dive                                       

Men’s Cross-Country                                      Women’s Swim & dive

Women’s Cross Country                                Men’s Volleyball

Football                                                           Women’s Volleyball

Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Men’s Baseball

 

                                    City College

                                                                                                                                                                                                           

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

            Men’s Cross Country                                      Men’s Baseball 

            Women’s Cross Country                                Women’s softball

            Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis

            Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis

            Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Women’s Badminton

            Men’s Basketball                                             Women’s Beach Volleyball

            Women’s Basketball

                                                Miramar College

(Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Volleyball                                             

Women’s Water Polo

Women’s Soccer

Men’s Basketball

Men’s Volleyball

As you can see, this will considerably complicate the athletics-related workload for both Mesa College and City College, but every effort will be made to provide this opportunity for our student-athletes for whom sports participation is an important aspect of their educational and transfer goals.

FUNDING – FOR STUDENTS

As you recall, the federal stimulus funding, known as the  Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act included a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which provided funds for all of higher education with the requirement that half of the funds be used as grants to directly benefit students affected by the COVID-19 crisis. This funding was received and allocated by City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, because these are the institutions that qualify under the federal financial aid guidelines.  However, a provision was made within our District to ensure that noncredit students in Continuing Education also received support. Funding also has been provided for DACA and undocumented students as a result of a Court action.  The distribution to date follows:

 

Institution        Number of Students        Total Awarded Funds          Received Remaining Balance

Miramar            2,016                                 $717,200.00                          $1,648,766.40   $931,566.40

While CARES Act awards will continue to be distributed, other support has also been identified for students.  The United Way of San Diego County has provided $267,000 for SDCCD students who were initially ineligible for CARES Act funding (e.g., DACA, undocumented students, etc.).  In order to stretch this benefit to more students, the United Way has stipulated that the grants be in the amount of $200.  We are very grateful to CEO Nancy Sasaki and the United Way for their support. 

As you may recall, the San Diego Foundation provided $200,000 to our District for students to purchase laptops and obtain Internet connectivity in order to keep pace with the change to online instruction and not fall on the wrong side of the “digital divide.”  As the past chair and former member of the San Diego Foundation Board of Governors, I have continued to serve on the Foundation’s COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Executive Committee, and received more good news today.   The Foundation will provide an additional $70,000 to benefit students in District 4, as recommended by Supervisor Nathan Fletcher.  We are grateful to Foundation CEO Mark Stuart and Board Chair P. Kay Coleman for their support. It is clear that this student need is an ongoing one, so I am grateful that organizations in our community are supportive.  Many individuals, such as our current employees, retirees, and others have been making contributions as well.  Many thanks to all!

FUNDING – INSTITUTIONAL

CARES Act funding is also being deployed for institutional purposes. Please refer to the attached chart to see how these funds are being used.

LEGAL UPDATE

We should all be proud of the role that our District has been playing in confronting legal issues affecting our students during the COVID-19 emergency.  The first major challenge was the direction from the U.S. Department of Education and Secretary DeVos to exclude DACA, undocumented, noncredit, and some other categories of students from receiving CARES Act grants.  The SDCCD joined the lawsuit of the California Attorney General, the California Community College Chancellor’s Office, and five other districts, and we were all very pleased when the Court intervened and enabled us to include these students in CARES Act grants after all.  Most recently, the Department of Homeland Security and ICE indicated that international students who were in online instructional environments were subject to deportation.  When Harvard University and MIT brought a lawsuit to challenge this ruling, the SDCCD signed on with a number of other institutions as signatories of an amicus brief.  This morning, the Court intervened and the federal government withdrew this order.  Our students are suffering enough without being constantly impacted by negative decisions from Washington.

COMMENCEMENTS  REMINDER

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until a few days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

You will be receiving more information and details about these celebrations from Presidents Ricky Shabazz, Pam Luster, Wes Lundburg, and Carlos Turner Cortez.

The Board of Trustees and I continue to be impressed by and grateful for your work, and for the advice we receive from our community supporters as we move through the COVID-19 landscape.  Thank you, again, for your ingenuity, your understanding, and your support.  We can do this.

Stay well!


Friday, July 10, 2020 - 7:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The United Way of San Diego Financial Assistance Grant is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

Tuesday, June 30, 2020 - 1:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The CARES Act Grant Application is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

 


Thursday, June 25, 2020 - 10:06 am

CARES Act Guidelines Update

Great News! The US District Court recently issued a preliminary injunction allowing us to extend Miramar College's Summer CARES Act Emergency Aid to a broader group of students. While we adjust our process to meet updated guidelines we have temporarily removed the CARES Act application link and will relaunch our application process on June 29th. Student who have already submitted a Summer CARES Act application will not need to reapply.  

In addition due to this recent change in guidelines and the overwhelming financial need of our students, we may be making adjustments to the amount of the Summer 2020 CARES Act award in order to ensure we provide financial support to as many students as possible.  More details will be provided in the coming days.

We thank you for your dedicate and endurance in continuing your studies with us during these challenging times.


Monday, June 22, 2020 - 4:30 pm

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

 


Friday, June 19, 2020 - 7:17 pm

COVID-19 Update #10 from Chancellor Carroll

I am writing to you on Juneteenth, the day that marks the final notice of emancipation of enslaved people in 1865. It is an ironic date, because of the callous decision in Texas to withhold this information from enslaved people who had actually been legally emancipated in 1863.  It is also a hopeful date, because it does celebrate liberation.  In the meantime, as Juneteenth celebrations and discussions are taking place across the nation, it is also a continuing time of turmoil regarding how the legacy of slavery continues to affect current events, including violence and brutality conducted by some who are charged with protecting the people, while thousands of people in every state have taken to the streets and to communication vehicles in protest. And, in the midst of all of this, the COVID-19 crisis is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing.  This is a time for thoughtful action, and that is what I am writing about today.

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

Let me bring you up-to-date about our current plans:

SUMMER SESSION

The summer session is successfully underway, with strong enrollment, although with not as many classes as the previous summer.  Everyone seems to have settled into the online format more comfortably.  Although this is by no means an ideal form of instruction, students are able to pursue their education in an uninterrupted manner.

CONVERSION OF SOME CLASS COMPONENTS TO ON-CAMPUS

As I have shared before and as many of you have discussed in your meetings, some classes just cannot be completed in the online format, and we have a number of students who ended the spring semester in an “in progress” mode.  Because of this situation, some laboratory, clinical, and career-technical class components are being moved to the campuses, effective June 22, so that the hands-on requirements can be met and students can complete their spring semester classes.  Strict health checks, equipment (PPE),  and protocols will be observed for these classes and everyone will be required to comply with them.  Here is a summary of these instructional changes:

·City College – Nursing (However, there are still problems in obtaining Hospital internships for clinical experience)

·Mesa College – Allied Health classes and Culinary Arts classes

·Miramar College – Fire Academy and Emergency Medical Technician Academy (Police Academy to be addressed later)

·Continuing Education – A pilot program in Welding

The Presidents, Vice Presidents, Deans, Department Chairs, and Faculty are hoping to learn a lot from this initiative, which can be useful in converting other sections in a subsequent semester as well.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand the on-campus components for selected classes.  The health requirements for these classes will be strict.

The Presidents and the campus leadership groups are having discussions with their athletics departments regarding how to approach fall sports.  No final decisions have been made as yet and no final guidance has been provided by the California Community Colleges Athletic Association, which regulates community college intercollegiate sports. Because of the importance of sports to many of our student-athletes as an avenue for their development, as well as for their future transfer opportunities, everyone hopes to see some form of continuation – but only if it is safe to do so.

COMMENCEMENT

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until 3 days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

 

RETURNING TO CAMPUS OR DISTRICT DEPARTMENTS

As I have stated earlier, we will continue to work remotely for some time to come, probably through much if not all of the fall semester. Our return to onsite operations will depend entirely upon the status of the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and the directions we receive from health officials and the governor.  However, we are already starting the planning process to govern a safe return, which, when it does occur, will probably be phased-in.  The Chancellor’s Cabinet formed a task force to review data and models for this eventuality, and the task force has already begun its work in shaping principles, protocols, and processes for returning.  Members of the task force (who are not representing institutions, but functions) are:

Will Surbrook, Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

Susan Topham, Dean, Mesa College

Brett Bell, Vice President of Administrative Services, Miramar College

Chris Manis, Vice Chancellor, Facilities Management

Laura Murphy, Academic Senate President, Miramar College

John Bromma, Academic Senate President, Continuing Education

Neil Kovrig, Classified Senate President, Continuing Education

Jim Mahler, President, AFT Guild

Danielle Short, Representative, AFT Guild, Classified

 

Thank you, again, for your patience and support.  Please know that the Board of Trustees and I are proud of you, and that your input and suggestions are welcome as we continue to move forward together.

Stay well!


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 5:15 pm

Lap Top Loan Program

Miramar College has purchased 300 laptops to be loaned out to students in need of such technology so that they may continue to pursue their academic goals with little interruption.

These laptops will be distributed to students on Saturday, April 18 from 10am-12pm in front of the college’s P3 parking structure just off of Westview Parkway.

To request a laptop loan, students should go to the following link and complete the request form. 

Should the number of requests exceed the number of available laptops, the college will create a wait list and make every effort to obtain additional laptops. Students selected to receive a laptop will be able to borrow the laptop for Spring, Summer and Fall 2020 academic terms, provided that they are enrolled at San Diego Miramar College for each term.

Those who are selected to receive a laptop will be sent more detailed information via email about how to pick-up the laptop from campus.

The Miramar College Foundation provided $8,000.00 in initial funding for the purchase. The College is also using funding from its San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund to complete the purchase.

Associated Student Government has pledged $3,000 toward the Emergency Fund.

If you’d like to contribute to the San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund please click on this provided: http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/foundation


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 3:13 pm

UChat Feature Connects Students to Campus Resources During Pandemic

One of the busiest services on a college campus takes place late summer into early fall when the Outreach Team needs to make certain students are enrolled and ready to begin their college careers. Eleven strong, the Miramar College Outreach Team is the gatekeeper for most new students who arrive on an unfamiliar campus. Navigating ones first year of college can be tough especially during a worldwide pandemic. However, a new feature at Miramar College is helping students connect to the campus even while most Miramar College classes and services remain remote. UChat, located on the school’s Outreach and School Relations webpage, gives students a chance to connect with an Outreach Team member or mentor Monday through Friday.

“Our Career Center had the tool first,” said Jennifer Peña, outreach coordinator at Miramar College. “And once COVID-19 hit and we were inundated by emails and we knew we had to move to remote operations, we decided as a staff that we had to have this feature on our page.”

Here’s how it works. Students can visit the Outreach & School Relations page here http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/outreach#. Once there, look at the right side of your computer. You’ll notice a tab pop out with 11 smiling faces ready to help. Click on the tab’s arrow and see which employee is online and ready to answer your questions. You can also access the chat via your mobile devices.

“We started this feature at the end of July,” said Peña. “In that time, we have seen several students reach out with all sorts of questions from how to enroll to how do I apply for financial aid?” Two other departments at Miramar College also use UChat-Financial Aid and the Career Center. “If a student has a question that we can’t answer, often times we are able to send them to another department’s UChat feature for better service,” said Peña.

The Outreach Team staffs its UChat feature Monday-Thursday from 10am-4pm and 10am to 1pm on Friday’s. If Peña isn’t there to answer your question, one of Outreach’s ten other representatives will be there. “We assign outreach mentors to the chat for 4 hour blocks,” said Peña. “These mentors are either current or former students who are well trained to answer questions from current and prospective students”

As a fluent Spanish speaker, Peña can also help those speaking Spanish, a demographic that makes ups more than a quarter of Miramar College’s population. “If a Spanish speaking student or parent logs onto to UChat and I am not online, they can always send me an email and I will respond.”

A majority of the students who have used the UChat function since its debut in late July are high school students either about to start college as a San Diego Promise student or looking to take a dual enrollment class during the upcoming semester. The UChat features also appears on the college’s CCAP webpage, San Diego Promise page, and the College’s Assessment Office page.

The Financial Aid department has 4 representatives available to answer questions. You can find their UChat link at http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/financial-aid#. Due to staffing issues, the Financial Aid department does not post UChat hours. Check out our social media platforms for available times. Meantime, the Career Center has 8 representatives to work its UChat Monday-Thursday 8am-6pm and Friday’s 8am-3pm. http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/careerservices

 


Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 4:28 pm

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego:  https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/.

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego.

If students need help with this process please have them call Student Health Services at 619-388-7881.

Colleges and University Student COVID Education can be found at COVID-Education@sdcounty.ca.gov.  They also post about:

  • How to stay healthy during COVID
  • Mental Health during COVID
  • Why should you wear a mask?
  • COVID Testing site information
  • Much more

Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 3:49 pm

City of San Diego COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program

The City of San Diego announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego. 

For more information visit COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego

 

https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/

 


Wednesday, July 15, 2020 - 10:33 am

Chancellor's Update for July 14, 2020

I hope this message finds everyone well and functioning effectively in all the new roles and formats we have to work with.  It seems incredible that, with the exception of a few key employee groups, we have all been teaching and working remotely since March 23!

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

As was predicted, the COVID-19 contagion is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing. In the past 14 days, California saw 107,776 new cases of the virus, bringing total cases to date to 336,508. Also, in the past 14 days, there were 1,107 deaths, bringing the death total to 7,087. As you can see, this is a very serious situation that requires our most careful and thoughtful response.  Let me bring you up-to-date about the current situation and our plans.

STATEWIDE & COUNTY DECISIONS

San Diego County has been placed on the statewide watch-list because of the surge in coronavirus cases, and must comply with the state’s directives as conveyed by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), as prescribed by Dr. Sonia Y. Angell, State Public Health Officer and CDPH Director. Here is the current status of CDPH requirements.

“Effective July 13, 2020, ALL counties must close indoor operations in these sectors:

  • Dine-in restaurants
  • Wineries and tasting rooms
  • Movie theaters 
  • Family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys, miniature golf, batting cages and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Cardrooms

Additionally, bars, brewpubs, breweries, and pubs must close all operations both indoor and outdoor statewide, unless they are offering sit-down, outdoor dine-in meals. Alcohol can only be sold in the same transaction as a meal.

Counties that have remained on the County Monitoring List for 3 consecutive days will be required to shut down the following industries or activities unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up (San Diego County is on this list).

  • Fitness centers
  • Worship services
  • Protests
  • Offices for non-essential sectors
  • Personal care services, like nail salons, body waxing and tattoo parlors
  • Hair salons and barbershops

·Malls

This order shall go into effect immediately. These closures shall remain in effect until I (that is, Dr. Angell) determine it is appropriate to modify the order based on public health conditions.  Outdoor operations may be conducted under a tent, canopy, or other sun shelter but only as long as no more than one side is closed, allowing sufficient outdoor air movement.

I will continue to monitor the epidemiological data and will modify the sectors that may be open both statewide and in counties on the Monitoring List as required by the evolving public health conditions. If I determine that it is appropriate to reopen, close, or modify the operations of any additional sectors, those sectors will be posted at: https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap-counties/.  My guidance mandating the wearing of face coverings and my guidance prohibiting gatherings continue to apply statewide, except as specifically permitted in other orders or guidance documents. To prevent further spread of COVID-19 to and within other jurisdictions within the State, Californians should not travel significant distances but should stay close to home.”

While higher education is not mentioned specifically in this set of directives, universities, four-year colleges, and community colleges are still on the original closure list, although with the flexibility to offer some programs and program components on campus where necessary.  Plans in this regard must be proposed and reviewed by the Department of Public Health.  The context in which we are operating requires that we exercise great care regarding anything we do on-campus or at District Office sites.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered primarily online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand some on-campus components for selected classes that require laboratory, clinical, or career-technical hands-on sessions. The health requirements for these classes will be strict, including temperature checks, PPE, social-distancing, disinfecting, etc..  I must emphasize, however, that because of the volatility of the COVID-19 situation, everyone must be prepared to make quick changes during the semester, reverting to the online format if necessary.  Additional courses have also been approved through the curriculum process so that they can be offered in a distance education (DE ) format. This is a difficult ride which will tax everyone’s patience at times, especially if changes occur during the semester, but it is a necessary to be as agile and flexible as possible as we align our class schedules during this unpredictable pandemic.

Here is the current plan:

City, Mesa, and Miramar Colleges, and Continuing Education will offer the vast majority of approximately 6,500 class sections in the fall 2020 semester online.  The exception is hard-to-convert classes in programs that may require technical machinery, hands-on applied instruction, specific work or laboratory environments that may not be viable without some face-to-face instruction.  Hard to convert classes offered in the fall 2020 may be, but are not limited to, those in industry sectors of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers in the State of California as outlined by Governor Gavin Newsom.  Industry sectors include healthcare, transportation and logistics, energy, and communications and information technology.

City College offerings this fall include nursing, electricity, and machine-tool classes through hybrid formats (on-campus and online).  City College has 23 newly-approved distance education courses online including:  communications studies, exercise science, humanities, math, commercial music, nutrition, philosophy, photography, and Spanish.  The majority of classes are online.

Mesa College is offering culinary arts, dental assisting, radiologic technology, animal health technology, registered veterinary technician, and some biology and chemistry courses through hybrid formats.  Mesa College has 83 newly-approved DE courses including: architecture, building construction, culinary arts, child development, computer information systems, education, dance, history, math, exercise science, physical therapist assistant, and veterinary technology animal health.  The majority of classes are online.

Miramar College is offering administration of justice, automotive technology, aviation, aviation maintenance technology, fire protection technology, medical laboratory technician training through hybrid formats.  Miramar has 22 newly-approved distance education courses, including administration of justice, emergency medical technician, chemistry, child development, exercise science, fire technology, mathematics, and paralegal studies.  The majority of classes are online. 

Continuing Education course offerings have been designed to be fully online except for healthcare courses that require onsite clinical/laboratory skill simulations.

As stated earlier, given the precariousness of COVID-19, the offering of on-campus classes will take place in accordance with state requirements and San Diego County of Public Health guidelines.  Plans are underway to adhere to safety protocols and address contingencies in order to ensure there is continuity in instruction in the fall.

FALL SPORTS

Because of the persistence of COVID-19, the California Community Colleges Athletics Association (CCCAA) has determined that it is not safe to proceed with intercollegiate sports in the fall.  All such sports have been postponed and will be offered in the spring, if it is safe to do so.  This decision affects the following sports in our District.

                                                Mesa College

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis                           Women’s Softball

Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis                     Women’s Badminton

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Track & Field                Women’s Beach Volleyball

Women’s Water Polo                                      Men’s Swim & Dive                                       

Men’s Cross-Country                                      Women’s Swim & dive

Women’s Cross Country                                Men’s Volleyball

Football                                                           Women’s Volleyball

Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Men’s Baseball

 

                                    City College

                                                                                                                                                                                                           

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

            Men’s Cross Country                                      Men’s Baseball 

            Women’s Cross Country                                Women’s softball

            Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis

            Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis

            Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Women’s Badminton

            Men’s Basketball                                             Women’s Beach Volleyball

            Women’s Basketball

                                                Miramar College

(Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Volleyball                                             

Women’s Water Polo

Women’s Soccer

Men’s Basketball

Men’s Volleyball

As you can see, this will considerably complicate the athletics-related workload for both Mesa College and City College, but every effort will be made to provide this opportunity for our student-athletes for whom sports participation is an important aspect of their educational and transfer goals.

FUNDING – FOR STUDENTS

As you recall, the federal stimulus funding, known as the  Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act included a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which provided funds for all of higher education with the requirement that half of the funds be used as grants to directly benefit students affected by the COVID-19 crisis. This funding was received and allocated by City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, because these are the institutions that qualify under the federal financial aid guidelines.  However, a provision was made within our District to ensure that noncredit students in Continuing Education also received support. Funding also has been provided for DACA and undocumented students as a result of a Court action.  The distribution to date follows:

 

Institution        Number of Students        Total Awarded Funds          Received Remaining Balance

Miramar            2,016                                 $717,200.00                          $1,648,766.40   $931,566.40

While CARES Act awards will continue to be distributed, other support has also been identified for students.  The United Way of San Diego County has provided $267,000 for SDCCD students who were initially ineligible for CARES Act funding (e.g., DACA, undocumented students, etc.).  In order to stretch this benefit to more students, the United Way has stipulated that the grants be in the amount of $200.  We are very grateful to CEO Nancy Sasaki and the United Way for their support. 

As you may recall, the San Diego Foundation provided $200,000 to our District for students to purchase laptops and obtain Internet connectivity in order to keep pace with the change to online instruction and not fall on the wrong side of the “digital divide.”  As the past chair and former member of the San Diego Foundation Board of Governors, I have continued to serve on the Foundation’s COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Executive Committee, and received more good news today.   The Foundation will provide an additional $70,000 to benefit students in District 4, as recommended by Supervisor Nathan Fletcher.  We are grateful to Foundation CEO Mark Stuart and Board Chair P. Kay Coleman for their support. It is clear that this student need is an ongoing one, so I am grateful that organizations in our community are supportive.  Many individuals, such as our current employees, retirees, and others have been making contributions as well.  Many thanks to all!

FUNDING – INSTITUTIONAL

CARES Act funding is also being deployed for institutional purposes. Please refer to the attached chart to see how these funds are being used.

LEGAL UPDATE

We should all be proud of the role that our District has been playing in confronting legal issues affecting our students during the COVID-19 emergency.  The first major challenge was the direction from the U.S. Department of Education and Secretary DeVos to exclude DACA, undocumented, noncredit, and some other categories of students from receiving CARES Act grants.  The SDCCD joined the lawsuit of the California Attorney General, the California Community College Chancellor’s Office, and five other districts, and we were all very pleased when the Court intervened and enabled us to include these students in CARES Act grants after all.  Most recently, the Department of Homeland Security and ICE indicated that international students who were in online instructional environments were subject to deportation.  When Harvard University and MIT brought a lawsuit to challenge this ruling, the SDCCD signed on with a number of other institutions as signatories of an amicus brief.  This morning, the Court intervened and the federal government withdrew this order.  Our students are suffering enough without being constantly impacted by negative decisions from Washington.

COMMENCEMENTS  REMINDER

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until a few days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

You will be receiving more information and details about these celebrations from Presidents Ricky Shabazz, Pam Luster, Wes Lundburg, and Carlos Turner Cortez.

The Board of Trustees and I continue to be impressed by and grateful for your work, and for the advice we receive from our community supporters as we move through the COVID-19 landscape.  Thank you, again, for your ingenuity, your understanding, and your support.  We can do this.

Stay well!


Friday, July 10, 2020 - 7:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The United Way of San Diego Financial Assistance Grant is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

Tuesday, June 30, 2020 - 1:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The CARES Act Grant Application is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

 


Thursday, June 25, 2020 - 10:06 am

CARES Act Guidelines Update

Great News! The US District Court recently issued a preliminary injunction allowing us to extend Miramar College's Summer CARES Act Emergency Aid to a broader group of students. While we adjust our process to meet updated guidelines we have temporarily removed the CARES Act application link and will relaunch our application process on June 29th. Student who have already submitted a Summer CARES Act application will not need to reapply.  

In addition due to this recent change in guidelines and the overwhelming financial need of our students, we may be making adjustments to the amount of the Summer 2020 CARES Act award in order to ensure we provide financial support to as many students as possible.  More details will be provided in the coming days.

We thank you for your dedicate and endurance in continuing your studies with us during these challenging times.


Monday, June 22, 2020 - 4:30 pm

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

 


Friday, June 19, 2020 - 7:17 pm

COVID-19 Update #10 from Chancellor Carroll

I am writing to you on Juneteenth, the day that marks the final notice of emancipation of enslaved people in 1865. It is an ironic date, because of the callous decision in Texas to withhold this information from enslaved people who had actually been legally emancipated in 1863.  It is also a hopeful date, because it does celebrate liberation.  In the meantime, as Juneteenth celebrations and discussions are taking place across the nation, it is also a continuing time of turmoil regarding how the legacy of slavery continues to affect current events, including violence and brutality conducted by some who are charged with protecting the people, while thousands of people in every state have taken to the streets and to communication vehicles in protest. And, in the midst of all of this, the COVID-19 crisis is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing.  This is a time for thoughtful action, and that is what I am writing about today.

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

Let me bring you up-to-date about our current plans:

SUMMER SESSION

The summer session is successfully underway, with strong enrollment, although with not as many classes as the previous summer.  Everyone seems to have settled into the online format more comfortably.  Although this is by no means an ideal form of instruction, students are able to pursue their education in an uninterrupted manner.

CONVERSION OF SOME CLASS COMPONENTS TO ON-CAMPUS

As I have shared before and as many of you have discussed in your meetings, some classes just cannot be completed in the online format, and we have a number of students who ended the spring semester in an “in progress” mode.  Because of this situation, some laboratory, clinical, and career-technical class components are being moved to the campuses, effective June 22, so that the hands-on requirements can be met and students can complete their spring semester classes.  Strict health checks, equipment (PPE),  and protocols will be observed for these classes and everyone will be required to comply with them.  Here is a summary of these instructional changes:

·City College – Nursing (However, there are still problems in obtaining Hospital internships for clinical experience)

·Mesa College – Allied Health classes and Culinary Arts classes

·Miramar College – Fire Academy and Emergency Medical Technician Academy (Police Academy to be addressed later)

·Continuing Education – A pilot program in Welding

The Presidents, Vice Presidents, Deans, Department Chairs, and Faculty are hoping to learn a lot from this initiative, which can be useful in converting other sections in a subsequent semester as well.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand the on-campus components for selected classes.  The health requirements for these classes will be strict.

The Presidents and the campus leadership groups are having discussions with their athletics departments regarding how to approach fall sports.  No final decisions have been made as yet and no final guidance has been provided by the California Community Colleges Athletic Association, which regulates community college intercollegiate sports. Because of the importance of sports to many of our student-athletes as an avenue for their development, as well as for their future transfer opportunities, everyone hopes to see some form of continuation – but only if it is safe to do so.

COMMENCEMENT

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until 3 days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

 

RETURNING TO CAMPUS OR DISTRICT DEPARTMENTS

As I have stated earlier, we will continue to work remotely for some time to come, probably through much if not all of the fall semester. Our return to onsite operations will depend entirely upon the status of the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and the directions we receive from health officials and the governor.  However, we are already starting the planning process to govern a safe return, which, when it does occur, will probably be phased-in.  The Chancellor’s Cabinet formed a task force to review data and models for this eventuality, and the task force has already begun its work in shaping principles, protocols, and processes for returning.  Members of the task force (who are not representing institutions, but functions) are:

Will Surbrook, Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

Susan Topham, Dean, Mesa College

Brett Bell, Vice President of Administrative Services, Miramar College

Chris Manis, Vice Chancellor, Facilities Management

Laura Murphy, Academic Senate President, Miramar College

John Bromma, Academic Senate President, Continuing Education

Neil Kovrig, Classified Senate President, Continuing Education

Jim Mahler, President, AFT Guild

Danielle Short, Representative, AFT Guild, Classified

 

Thank you, again, for your patience and support.  Please know that the Board of Trustees and I are proud of you, and that your input and suggestions are welcome as we continue to move forward together.

Stay well!


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 5:15 pm

Lap Top Loan Program

Miramar College has purchased 300 laptops to be loaned out to students in need of such technology so that they may continue to pursue their academic goals with little interruption.

These laptops will be distributed to students on Saturday, April 18 from 10am-12pm in front of the college’s P3 parking structure just off of Westview Parkway.

To request a laptop loan, students should go to the following link and complete the request form. 

Should the number of requests exceed the number of available laptops, the college will create a wait list and make every effort to obtain additional laptops. Students selected to receive a laptop will be able to borrow the laptop for Spring, Summer and Fall 2020 academic terms, provided that they are enrolled at San Diego Miramar College for each term.

Those who are selected to receive a laptop will be sent more detailed information via email about how to pick-up the laptop from campus.

The Miramar College Foundation provided $8,000.00 in initial funding for the purchase. The College is also using funding from its San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund to complete the purchase.

Associated Student Government has pledged $3,000 toward the Emergency Fund.

If you’d like to contribute to the San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund please click on this provided: http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/foundation


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 3:13 pm

UChat Feature Connects Students to Campus Resources During Pandemic

One of the busiest services on a college campus takes place late summer into early fall when the Outreach Team needs to make certain students are enrolled and ready to begin their college careers. Eleven strong, the Miramar College Outreach Team is the gatekeeper for most new students who arrive on an unfamiliar campus. Navigating ones first year of college can be tough especially during a worldwide pandemic. However, a new feature at Miramar College is helping students connect to the campus even while most Miramar College classes and services remain remote. UChat, located on the school’s Outreach and School Relations webpage, gives students a chance to connect with an Outreach Team member or mentor Monday through Friday.

“Our Career Center had the tool first,” said Jennifer Peña, outreach coordinator at Miramar College. “And once COVID-19 hit and we were inundated by emails and we knew we had to move to remote operations, we decided as a staff that we had to have this feature on our page.”

Here’s how it works. Students can visit the Outreach & School Relations page here http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/outreach#. Once there, look at the right side of your computer. You’ll notice a tab pop out with 11 smiling faces ready to help. Click on the tab’s arrow and see which employee is online and ready to answer your questions. You can also access the chat via your mobile devices.

“We started this feature at the end of July,” said Peña. “In that time, we have seen several students reach out with all sorts of questions from how to enroll to how do I apply for financial aid?” Two other departments at Miramar College also use UChat-Financial Aid and the Career Center. “If a student has a question that we can’t answer, often times we are able to send them to another department’s UChat feature for better service,” said Peña.

The Outreach Team staffs its UChat feature Monday-Thursday from 10am-4pm and 10am to 1pm on Friday’s. If Peña isn’t there to answer your question, one of Outreach’s ten other representatives will be there. “We assign outreach mentors to the chat for 4 hour blocks,” said Peña. “These mentors are either current or former students who are well trained to answer questions from current and prospective students”

As a fluent Spanish speaker, Peña can also help those speaking Spanish, a demographic that makes ups more than a quarter of Miramar College’s population. “If a Spanish speaking student or parent logs onto to UChat and I am not online, they can always send me an email and I will respond.”

A majority of the students who have used the UChat function since its debut in late July are high school students either about to start college as a San Diego Promise student or looking to take a dual enrollment class during the upcoming semester. The UChat features also appears on the college’s CCAP webpage, San Diego Promise page, and the College’s Assessment Office page.

The Financial Aid department has 4 representatives available to answer questions. You can find their UChat link at http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/financial-aid#. Due to staffing issues, the Financial Aid department does not post UChat hours. Check out our social media platforms for available times. Meantime, the Career Center has 8 representatives to work its UChat Monday-Thursday 8am-6pm and Friday’s 8am-3pm. http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/careerservices

 


Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 4:28 pm

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego:  https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/.

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego.

If students need help with this process please have them call Student Health Services at 619-388-7881.

Colleges and University Student COVID Education can be found at COVID-Education@sdcounty.ca.gov.  They also post about:

  • How to stay healthy during COVID
  • Mental Health during COVID
  • Why should you wear a mask?
  • COVID Testing site information
  • Much more

Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 3:49 pm

City of San Diego COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program

The City of San Diego announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego. 

For more information visit COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego

 

https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/

 


Wednesday, July 15, 2020 - 10:33 am

Chancellor's Update for July 14, 2020

I hope this message finds everyone well and functioning effectively in all the new roles and formats we have to work with.  It seems incredible that, with the exception of a few key employee groups, we have all been teaching and working remotely since March 23!

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

As was predicted, the COVID-19 contagion is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing. In the past 14 days, California saw 107,776 new cases of the virus, bringing total cases to date to 336,508. Also, in the past 14 days, there were 1,107 deaths, bringing the death total to 7,087. As you can see, this is a very serious situation that requires our most careful and thoughtful response.  Let me bring you up-to-date about the current situation and our plans.

STATEWIDE & COUNTY DECISIONS

San Diego County has been placed on the statewide watch-list because of the surge in coronavirus cases, and must comply with the state’s directives as conveyed by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), as prescribed by Dr. Sonia Y. Angell, State Public Health Officer and CDPH Director. Here is the current status of CDPH requirements.

“Effective July 13, 2020, ALL counties must close indoor operations in these sectors:

  • Dine-in restaurants
  • Wineries and tasting rooms
  • Movie theaters 
  • Family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys, miniature golf, batting cages and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Cardrooms

Additionally, bars, brewpubs, breweries, and pubs must close all operations both indoor and outdoor statewide, unless they are offering sit-down, outdoor dine-in meals. Alcohol can only be sold in the same transaction as a meal.

Counties that have remained on the County Monitoring List for 3 consecutive days will be required to shut down the following industries or activities unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up (San Diego County is on this list).

  • Fitness centers
  • Worship services
  • Protests
  • Offices for non-essential sectors
  • Personal care services, like nail salons, body waxing and tattoo parlors
  • Hair salons and barbershops

·Malls

This order shall go into effect immediately. These closures shall remain in effect until I (that is, Dr. Angell) determine it is appropriate to modify the order based on public health conditions.  Outdoor operations may be conducted under a tent, canopy, or other sun shelter but only as long as no more than one side is closed, allowing sufficient outdoor air movement.

I will continue to monitor the epidemiological data and will modify the sectors that may be open both statewide and in counties on the Monitoring List as required by the evolving public health conditions. If I determine that it is appropriate to reopen, close, or modify the operations of any additional sectors, those sectors will be posted at: https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap-counties/.  My guidance mandating the wearing of face coverings and my guidance prohibiting gatherings continue to apply statewide, except as specifically permitted in other orders or guidance documents. To prevent further spread of COVID-19 to and within other jurisdictions within the State, Californians should not travel significant distances but should stay close to home.”

While higher education is not mentioned specifically in this set of directives, universities, four-year colleges, and community colleges are still on the original closure list, although with the flexibility to offer some programs and program components on campus where necessary.  Plans in this regard must be proposed and reviewed by the Department of Public Health.  The context in which we are operating requires that we exercise great care regarding anything we do on-campus or at District Office sites.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered primarily online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand some on-campus components for selected classes that require laboratory, clinical, or career-technical hands-on sessions. The health requirements for these classes will be strict, including temperature checks, PPE, social-distancing, disinfecting, etc..  I must emphasize, however, that because of the volatility of the COVID-19 situation, everyone must be prepared to make quick changes during the semester, reverting to the online format if necessary.  Additional courses have also been approved through the curriculum process so that they can be offered in a distance education (DE ) format. This is a difficult ride which will tax everyone’s patience at times, especially if changes occur during the semester, but it is a necessary to be as agile and flexible as possible as we align our class schedules during this unpredictable pandemic.

Here is the current plan:

City, Mesa, and Miramar Colleges, and Continuing Education will offer the vast majority of approximately 6,500 class sections in the fall 2020 semester online.  The exception is hard-to-convert classes in programs that may require technical machinery, hands-on applied instruction, specific work or laboratory environments that may not be viable without some face-to-face instruction.  Hard to convert classes offered in the fall 2020 may be, but are not limited to, those in industry sectors of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers in the State of California as outlined by Governor Gavin Newsom.  Industry sectors include healthcare, transportation and logistics, energy, and communications and information technology.

City College offerings this fall include nursing, electricity, and machine-tool classes through hybrid formats (on-campus and online).  City College has 23 newly-approved distance education courses online including:  communications studies, exercise science, humanities, math, commercial music, nutrition, philosophy, photography, and Spanish.  The majority of classes are online.

Mesa College is offering culinary arts, dental assisting, radiologic technology, animal health technology, registered veterinary technician, and some biology and chemistry courses through hybrid formats.  Mesa College has 83 newly-approved DE courses including: architecture, building construction, culinary arts, child development, computer information systems, education, dance, history, math, exercise science, physical therapist assistant, and veterinary technology animal health.  The majority of classes are online.

Miramar College is offering administration of justice, automotive technology, aviation, aviation maintenance technology, fire protection technology, medical laboratory technician training through hybrid formats.  Miramar has 22 newly-approved distance education courses, including administration of justice, emergency medical technician, chemistry, child development, exercise science, fire technology, mathematics, and paralegal studies.  The majority of classes are online. 

Continuing Education course offerings have been designed to be fully online except for healthcare courses that require onsite clinical/laboratory skill simulations.

As stated earlier, given the precariousness of COVID-19, the offering of on-campus classes will take place in accordance with state requirements and San Diego County of Public Health guidelines.  Plans are underway to adhere to safety protocols and address contingencies in order to ensure there is continuity in instruction in the fall.

FALL SPORTS

Because of the persistence of COVID-19, the California Community Colleges Athletics Association (CCCAA) has determined that it is not safe to proceed with intercollegiate sports in the fall.  All such sports have been postponed and will be offered in the spring, if it is safe to do so.  This decision affects the following sports in our District.

                                                Mesa College

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis                           Women’s Softball

Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis                     Women’s Badminton

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Track & Field                Women’s Beach Volleyball

Women’s Water Polo                                      Men’s Swim & Dive                                       

Men’s Cross-Country                                      Women’s Swim & dive

Women’s Cross Country                                Men’s Volleyball

Football                                                           Women’s Volleyball

Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Men’s Baseball

 

                                    City College

                                                                                                                                                                                                           

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

            Men’s Cross Country                                      Men’s Baseball 

            Women’s Cross Country                                Women’s softball

            Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis

            Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis

            Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Women’s Badminton

            Men’s Basketball                                             Women’s Beach Volleyball

            Women’s Basketball

                                                Miramar College

(Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Volleyball                                             

Women’s Water Polo

Women’s Soccer

Men’s Basketball

Men’s Volleyball

As you can see, this will considerably complicate the athletics-related workload for both Mesa College and City College, but every effort will be made to provide this opportunity for our student-athletes for whom sports participation is an important aspect of their educational and transfer goals.

FUNDING – FOR STUDENTS

As you recall, the federal stimulus funding, known as the  Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act included a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which provided funds for all of higher education with the requirement that half of the funds be used as grants to directly benefit students affected by the COVID-19 crisis. This funding was received and allocated by City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, because these are the institutions that qualify under the federal financial aid guidelines.  However, a provision was made within our District to ensure that noncredit students in Continuing Education also received support. Funding also has been provided for DACA and undocumented students as a result of a Court action.  The distribution to date follows:

 

Institution        Number of Students        Total Awarded Funds          Received Remaining Balance

Miramar            2,016                                 $717,200.00                          $1,648,766.40   $931,566.40

While CARES Act awards will continue to be distributed, other support has also been identified for students.  The United Way of San Diego County has provided $267,000 for SDCCD students who were initially ineligible for CARES Act funding (e.g., DACA, undocumented students, etc.).  In order to stretch this benefit to more students, the United Way has stipulated that the grants be in the amount of $200.  We are very grateful to CEO Nancy Sasaki and the United Way for their support. 

As you may recall, the San Diego Foundation provided $200,000 to our District for students to purchase laptops and obtain Internet connectivity in order to keep pace with the change to online instruction and not fall on the wrong side of the “digital divide.”  As the past chair and former member of the San Diego Foundation Board of Governors, I have continued to serve on the Foundation’s COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Executive Committee, and received more good news today.   The Foundation will provide an additional $70,000 to benefit students in District 4, as recommended by Supervisor Nathan Fletcher.  We are grateful to Foundation CEO Mark Stuart and Board Chair P. Kay Coleman for their support. It is clear that this student need is an ongoing one, so I am grateful that organizations in our community are supportive.  Many individuals, such as our current employees, retirees, and others have been making contributions as well.  Many thanks to all!

FUNDING – INSTITUTIONAL

CARES Act funding is also being deployed for institutional purposes. Please refer to the attached chart to see how these funds are being used.

LEGAL UPDATE

We should all be proud of the role that our District has been playing in confronting legal issues affecting our students during the COVID-19 emergency.  The first major challenge was the direction from the U.S. Department of Education and Secretary DeVos to exclude DACA, undocumented, noncredit, and some other categories of students from receiving CARES Act grants.  The SDCCD joined the lawsuit of the California Attorney General, the California Community College Chancellor’s Office, and five other districts, and we were all very pleased when the Court intervened and enabled us to include these students in CARES Act grants after all.  Most recently, the Department of Homeland Security and ICE indicated that international students who were in online instructional environments were subject to deportation.  When Harvard University and MIT brought a lawsuit to challenge this ruling, the SDCCD signed on with a number of other institutions as signatories of an amicus brief.  This morning, the Court intervened and the federal government withdrew this order.  Our students are suffering enough without being constantly impacted by negative decisions from Washington.

COMMENCEMENTS  REMINDER

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until a few days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

You will be receiving more information and details about these celebrations from Presidents Ricky Shabazz, Pam Luster, Wes Lundburg, and Carlos Turner Cortez.

The Board of Trustees and I continue to be impressed by and grateful for your work, and for the advice we receive from our community supporters as we move through the COVID-19 landscape.  Thank you, again, for your ingenuity, your understanding, and your support.  We can do this.

Stay well!


Friday, July 10, 2020 - 7:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The United Way of San Diego Financial Assistance Grant is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

Tuesday, June 30, 2020 - 1:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The CARES Act Grant Application is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

 


Thursday, June 25, 2020 - 10:06 am

CARES Act Guidelines Update

Great News! The US District Court recently issued a preliminary injunction allowing us to extend Miramar College's Summer CARES Act Emergency Aid to a broader group of students. While we adjust our process to meet updated guidelines we have temporarily removed the CARES Act application link and will relaunch our application process on June 29th. Student who have already submitted a Summer CARES Act application will not need to reapply.  

In addition due to this recent change in guidelines and the overwhelming financial need of our students, we may be making adjustments to the amount of the Summer 2020 CARES Act award in order to ensure we provide financial support to as many students as possible.  More details will be provided in the coming days.

We thank you for your dedicate and endurance in continuing your studies with us during these challenging times.


Monday, June 22, 2020 - 4:30 pm

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

 


Friday, June 19, 2020 - 7:17 pm

COVID-19 Update #10 from Chancellor Carroll

I am writing to you on Juneteenth, the day that marks the final notice of emancipation of enslaved people in 1865. It is an ironic date, because of the callous decision in Texas to withhold this information from enslaved people who had actually been legally emancipated in 1863.  It is also a hopeful date, because it does celebrate liberation.  In the meantime, as Juneteenth celebrations and discussions are taking place across the nation, it is also a continuing time of turmoil regarding how the legacy of slavery continues to affect current events, including violence and brutality conducted by some who are charged with protecting the people, while thousands of people in every state have taken to the streets and to communication vehicles in protest. And, in the midst of all of this, the COVID-19 crisis is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing.  This is a time for thoughtful action, and that is what I am writing about today.

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

Let me bring you up-to-date about our current plans:

SUMMER SESSION

The summer session is successfully underway, with strong enrollment, although with not as many classes as the previous summer.  Everyone seems to have settled into the online format more comfortably.  Although this is by no means an ideal form of instruction, students are able to pursue their education in an uninterrupted manner.

CONVERSION OF SOME CLASS COMPONENTS TO ON-CAMPUS

As I have shared before and as many of you have discussed in your meetings, some classes just cannot be completed in the online format, and we have a number of students who ended the spring semester in an “in progress” mode.  Because of this situation, some laboratory, clinical, and career-technical class components are being moved to the campuses, effective June 22, so that the hands-on requirements can be met and students can complete their spring semester classes.  Strict health checks, equipment (PPE),  and protocols will be observed for these classes and everyone will be required to comply with them.  Here is a summary of these instructional changes:

·City College – Nursing (However, there are still problems in obtaining Hospital internships for clinical experience)

·Mesa College – Allied Health classes and Culinary Arts classes

·Miramar College – Fire Academy and Emergency Medical Technician Academy (Police Academy to be addressed later)

·Continuing Education – A pilot program in Welding

The Presidents, Vice Presidents, Deans, Department Chairs, and Faculty are hoping to learn a lot from this initiative, which can be useful in converting other sections in a subsequent semester as well.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand the on-campus components for selected classes.  The health requirements for these classes will be strict.

The Presidents and the campus leadership groups are having discussions with their athletics departments regarding how to approach fall sports.  No final decisions have been made as yet and no final guidance has been provided by the California Community Colleges Athletic Association, which regulates community college intercollegiate sports. Because of the importance of sports to many of our student-athletes as an avenue for their development, as well as for their future transfer opportunities, everyone hopes to see some form of continuation – but only if it is safe to do so.

COMMENCEMENT

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until 3 days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

 

RETURNING TO CAMPUS OR DISTRICT DEPARTMENTS

As I have stated earlier, we will continue to work remotely for some time to come, probably through much if not all of the fall semester. Our return to onsite operations will depend entirely upon the status of the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and the directions we receive from health officials and the governor.  However, we are already starting the planning process to govern a safe return, which, when it does occur, will probably be phased-in.  The Chancellor’s Cabinet formed a task force to review data and models for this eventuality, and the task force has already begun its work in shaping principles, protocols, and processes for returning.  Members of the task force (who are not representing institutions, but functions) are:

Will Surbrook, Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

Susan Topham, Dean, Mesa College

Brett Bell, Vice President of Administrative Services, Miramar College

Chris Manis, Vice Chancellor, Facilities Management

Laura Murphy, Academic Senate President, Miramar College

John Bromma, Academic Senate President, Continuing Education

Neil Kovrig, Classified Senate President, Continuing Education

Jim Mahler, President, AFT Guild

Danielle Short, Representative, AFT Guild, Classified

 

Thank you, again, for your patience and support.  Please know that the Board of Trustees and I are proud of you, and that your input and suggestions are welcome as we continue to move forward together.

Stay well!


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 5:15 pm

Lap Top Loan Program

Miramar College has purchased 300 laptops to be loaned out to students in need of such technology so that they may continue to pursue their academic goals with little interruption.

These laptops will be distributed to students on Saturday, April 18 from 10am-12pm in front of the college’s P3 parking structure just off of Westview Parkway.

To request a laptop loan, students should go to the following link and complete the request form. 

Should the number of requests exceed the number of available laptops, the college will create a wait list and make every effort to obtain additional laptops. Students selected to receive a laptop will be able to borrow the laptop for Spring, Summer and Fall 2020 academic terms, provided that they are enrolled at San Diego Miramar College for each term.

Those who are selected to receive a laptop will be sent more detailed information via email about how to pick-up the laptop from campus.

The Miramar College Foundation provided $8,000.00 in initial funding for the purchase. The College is also using funding from its San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund to complete the purchase.

Associated Student Government has pledged $3,000 toward the Emergency Fund.

If you’d like to contribute to the San Diego Miramar College Foundation COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund please click on this provided: http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/foundation


Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 3:13 pm

UChat Feature Connects Students to Campus Resources During Pandemic

One of the busiest services on a college campus takes place late summer into early fall when the Outreach Team needs to make certain students are enrolled and ready to begin their college careers. Eleven strong, the Miramar College Outreach Team is the gatekeeper for most new students who arrive on an unfamiliar campus. Navigating ones first year of college can be tough especially during a worldwide pandemic. However, a new feature at Miramar College is helping students connect to the campus even while most Miramar College classes and services remain remote. UChat, located on the school’s Outreach and School Relations webpage, gives students a chance to connect with an Outreach Team member or mentor Monday through Friday.

“Our Career Center had the tool first,” said Jennifer Peña, outreach coordinator at Miramar College. “And once COVID-19 hit and we were inundated by emails and we knew we had to move to remote operations, we decided as a staff that we had to have this feature on our page.”

Here’s how it works. Students can visit the Outreach & School Relations page here http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/outreach#. Once there, look at the right side of your computer. You’ll notice a tab pop out with 11 smiling faces ready to help. Click on the tab’s arrow and see which employee is online and ready to answer your questions. You can also access the chat via your mobile devices.

“We started this feature at the end of July,” said Peña. “In that time, we have seen several students reach out with all sorts of questions from how to enroll to how do I apply for financial aid?” Two other departments at Miramar College also use UChat-Financial Aid and the Career Center. “If a student has a question that we can’t answer, often times we are able to send them to another department’s UChat feature for better service,” said Peña.

The Outreach Team staffs its UChat feature Monday-Thursday from 10am-4pm and 10am to 1pm on Friday’s. If Peña isn’t there to answer your question, one of Outreach’s ten other representatives will be there. “We assign outreach mentors to the chat for 4 hour blocks,” said Peña. “These mentors are either current or former students who are well trained to answer questions from current and prospective students”

As a fluent Spanish speaker, Peña can also help those speaking Spanish, a demographic that makes ups more than a quarter of Miramar College’s population. “If a Spanish speaking student or parent logs onto to UChat and I am not online, they can always send me an email and I will respond.”

A majority of the students who have used the UChat function since its debut in late July are high school students either about to start college as a San Diego Promise student or looking to take a dual enrollment class during the upcoming semester. The UChat features also appears on the college’s CCAP webpage, San Diego Promise page, and the College’s Assessment Office page.

The Financial Aid department has 4 representatives available to answer questions. You can find their UChat link at http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/financial-aid#. Due to staffing issues, the Financial Aid department does not post UChat hours. Check out our social media platforms for available times. Meantime, the Career Center has 8 representatives to work its UChat Monday-Thursday 8am-6pm and Friday’s 8am-3pm. http://sdmiramar.edu/campus/careerservices

 


Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 4:28 pm

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The County of San Diego COVID Education announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego:  https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/.

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego.

If students need help with this process please have them call Student Health Services at 619-388-7881.

Colleges and University Student COVID Education can be found at COVID-Education@sdcounty.ca.gov.  They also post about:

  • How to stay healthy during COVID
  • Mental Health during COVID
  • Why should you wear a mask?
  • COVID Testing site information
  • Much more

Thursday, July 30, 2020 - 3:49 pm

City of San Diego COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program

The City of San Diego announces rental assistance for low income persons and families

The City of San Diego’s COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program helps individuals and families with low income in the City of San Diego who experience financial hardship due to COVID-19.  The program will provide one-time payments of up to $4,000 per qualifying household to help pay past-due and/or upcoming rent.  The San Diego Housing Commission (SDHC) administers this program on behalf of the City of San Diego. 

For more information visit COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program in the City of San Diego

 

https://covidapplication.sdhc.org/

 


Wednesday, July 15, 2020 - 10:33 am

Chancellor's Update for July 14, 2020

I hope this message finds everyone well and functioning effectively in all the new roles and formats we have to work with.  It seems incredible that, with the exception of a few key employee groups, we have all been teaching and working remotely since March 23!

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

As was predicted, the COVID-19 contagion is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing. In the past 14 days, California saw 107,776 new cases of the virus, bringing total cases to date to 336,508. Also, in the past 14 days, there were 1,107 deaths, bringing the death total to 7,087. As you can see, this is a very serious situation that requires our most careful and thoughtful response.  Let me bring you up-to-date about the current situation and our plans.

STATEWIDE & COUNTY DECISIONS

San Diego County has been placed on the statewide watch-list because of the surge in coronavirus cases, and must comply with the state’s directives as conveyed by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), as prescribed by Dr. Sonia Y. Angell, State Public Health Officer and CDPH Director. Here is the current status of CDPH requirements.

“Effective July 13, 2020, ALL counties must close indoor operations in these sectors:

  • Dine-in restaurants
  • Wineries and tasting rooms
  • Movie theaters 
  • Family entertainment centers (for example: bowling alleys, miniature golf, batting cages and arcades)
  • Zoos and museums
  • Cardrooms

Additionally, bars, brewpubs, breweries, and pubs must close all operations both indoor and outdoor statewide, unless they are offering sit-down, outdoor dine-in meals. Alcohol can only be sold in the same transaction as a meal.

Counties that have remained on the County Monitoring List for 3 consecutive days will be required to shut down the following industries or activities unless they can be modified to operate outside or by pick-up (San Diego County is on this list).

  • Fitness centers
  • Worship services
  • Protests
  • Offices for non-essential sectors
  • Personal care services, like nail salons, body waxing and tattoo parlors
  • Hair salons and barbershops

·Malls

This order shall go into effect immediately. These closures shall remain in effect until I (that is, Dr. Angell) determine it is appropriate to modify the order based on public health conditions.  Outdoor operations may be conducted under a tent, canopy, or other sun shelter but only as long as no more than one side is closed, allowing sufficient outdoor air movement.

I will continue to monitor the epidemiological data and will modify the sectors that may be open both statewide and in counties on the Monitoring List as required by the evolving public health conditions. If I determine that it is appropriate to reopen, close, or modify the operations of any additional sectors, those sectors will be posted at: https://covid19.ca.gov/roadmap-counties/.  My guidance mandating the wearing of face coverings and my guidance prohibiting gatherings continue to apply statewide, except as specifically permitted in other orders or guidance documents. To prevent further spread of COVID-19 to and within other jurisdictions within the State, Californians should not travel significant distances but should stay close to home.”

While higher education is not mentioned specifically in this set of directives, universities, four-year colleges, and community colleges are still on the original closure list, although with the flexibility to offer some programs and program components on campus where necessary.  Plans in this regard must be proposed and reviewed by the Department of Public Health.  The context in which we are operating requires that we exercise great care regarding anything we do on-campus or at District Office sites.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered primarily online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand some on-campus components for selected classes that require laboratory, clinical, or career-technical hands-on sessions. The health requirements for these classes will be strict, including temperature checks, PPE, social-distancing, disinfecting, etc..  I must emphasize, however, that because of the volatility of the COVID-19 situation, everyone must be prepared to make quick changes during the semester, reverting to the online format if necessary.  Additional courses have also been approved through the curriculum process so that they can be offered in a distance education (DE ) format. This is a difficult ride which will tax everyone’s patience at times, especially if changes occur during the semester, but it is a necessary to be as agile and flexible as possible as we align our class schedules during this unpredictable pandemic.

Here is the current plan:

City, Mesa, and Miramar Colleges, and Continuing Education will offer the vast majority of approximately 6,500 class sections in the fall 2020 semester online.  The exception is hard-to-convert classes in programs that may require technical machinery, hands-on applied instruction, specific work or laboratory environments that may not be viable without some face-to-face instruction.  Hard to convert classes offered in the fall 2020 may be, but are not limited to, those in industry sectors of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers in the State of California as outlined by Governor Gavin Newsom.  Industry sectors include healthcare, transportation and logistics, energy, and communications and information technology.

City College offerings this fall include nursing, electricity, and machine-tool classes through hybrid formats (on-campus and online).  City College has 23 newly-approved distance education courses online including:  communications studies, exercise science, humanities, math, commercial music, nutrition, philosophy, photography, and Spanish.  The majority of classes are online.

Mesa College is offering culinary arts, dental assisting, radiologic technology, animal health technology, registered veterinary technician, and some biology and chemistry courses through hybrid formats.  Mesa College has 83 newly-approved DE courses including: architecture, building construction, culinary arts, child development, computer information systems, education, dance, history, math, exercise science, physical therapist assistant, and veterinary technology animal health.  The majority of classes are online.

Miramar College is offering administration of justice, automotive technology, aviation, aviation maintenance technology, fire protection technology, medical laboratory technician training through hybrid formats.  Miramar has 22 newly-approved distance education courses, including administration of justice, emergency medical technician, chemistry, child development, exercise science, fire technology, mathematics, and paralegal studies.  The majority of classes are online. 

Continuing Education course offerings have been designed to be fully online except for healthcare courses that require onsite clinical/laboratory skill simulations.

As stated earlier, given the precariousness of COVID-19, the offering of on-campus classes will take place in accordance with state requirements and San Diego County of Public Health guidelines.  Plans are underway to adhere to safety protocols and address contingencies in order to ensure there is continuity in instruction in the fall.

FALL SPORTS

Because of the persistence of COVID-19, the California Community Colleges Athletics Association (CCCAA) has determined that it is not safe to proceed with intercollegiate sports in the fall.  All such sports have been postponed and will be offered in the spring, if it is safe to do so.  This decision affects the following sports in our District.

                                                Mesa College

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis                           Women’s Softball

Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis                     Women’s Badminton

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Track & Field                Women’s Beach Volleyball

Women’s Water Polo                                      Men’s Swim & Dive                                       

Men’s Cross-Country                                      Women’s Swim & dive

Women’s Cross Country                                Men’s Volleyball

Football                                                           Women’s Volleyball

Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Men’s Baseball

 

                                    City College

                                                                                                                                                                                                           

            (Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

            Men’s Cross Country                                      Men’s Baseball 

            Women’s Cross Country                                Women’s softball

            Men’s Soccer                                                  Men’s Tennis

            Women’s Soccer                                            Women’s Tennis

            Women’s Indoor Volleyball                             Women’s Badminton

            Men’s Basketball                                             Women’s Beach Volleyball

            Women’s Basketball

                                                Miramar College

(Fall Sports)                                                    (Spring Sports)

Men’s Water Polo                                           Men’s Volleyball                                             

Women’s Water Polo

Women’s Soccer

Men’s Basketball

Men’s Volleyball

As you can see, this will considerably complicate the athletics-related workload for both Mesa College and City College, but every effort will be made to provide this opportunity for our student-athletes for whom sports participation is an important aspect of their educational and transfer goals.

FUNDING – FOR STUDENTS

As you recall, the federal stimulus funding, known as the  Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act included a Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF), which provided funds for all of higher education with the requirement that half of the funds be used as grants to directly benefit students affected by the COVID-19 crisis. This funding was received and allocated by City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, because these are the institutions that qualify under the federal financial aid guidelines.  However, a provision was made within our District to ensure that noncredit students in Continuing Education also received support. Funding also has been provided for DACA and undocumented students as a result of a Court action.  The distribution to date follows:

 

Institution        Number of Students        Total Awarded Funds          Received Remaining Balance

Miramar            2,016                                 $717,200.00                          $1,648,766.40   $931,566.40

While CARES Act awards will continue to be distributed, other support has also been identified for students.  The United Way of San Diego County has provided $267,000 for SDCCD students who were initially ineligible for CARES Act funding (e.g., DACA, undocumented students, etc.).  In order to stretch this benefit to more students, the United Way has stipulated that the grants be in the amount of $200.  We are very grateful to CEO Nancy Sasaki and the United Way for their support. 

As you may recall, the San Diego Foundation provided $200,000 to our District for students to purchase laptops and obtain Internet connectivity in order to keep pace with the change to online instruction and not fall on the wrong side of the “digital divide.”  As the past chair and former member of the San Diego Foundation Board of Governors, I have continued to serve on the Foundation’s COVID-19 Community Relief Fund Executive Committee, and received more good news today.   The Foundation will provide an additional $70,000 to benefit students in District 4, as recommended by Supervisor Nathan Fletcher.  We are grateful to Foundation CEO Mark Stuart and Board Chair P. Kay Coleman for their support. It is clear that this student need is an ongoing one, so I am grateful that organizations in our community are supportive.  Many individuals, such as our current employees, retirees, and others have been making contributions as well.  Many thanks to all!

FUNDING – INSTITUTIONAL

CARES Act funding is also being deployed for institutional purposes. Please refer to the attached chart to see how these funds are being used.

LEGAL UPDATE

We should all be proud of the role that our District has been playing in confronting legal issues affecting our students during the COVID-19 emergency.  The first major challenge was the direction from the U.S. Department of Education and Secretary DeVos to exclude DACA, undocumented, noncredit, and some other categories of students from receiving CARES Act grants.  The SDCCD joined the lawsuit of the California Attorney General, the California Community College Chancellor’s Office, and five other districts, and we were all very pleased when the Court intervened and enabled us to include these students in CARES Act grants after all.  Most recently, the Department of Homeland Security and ICE indicated that international students who were in online instructional environments were subject to deportation.  When Harvard University and MIT brought a lawsuit to challenge this ruling, the SDCCD signed on with a number of other institutions as signatories of an amicus brief.  This morning, the Court intervened and the federal government withdrew this order.  Our students are suffering enough without being constantly impacted by negative decisions from Washington.

COMMENCEMENTS  REMINDER

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until a few days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

You will be receiving more information and details about these celebrations from Presidents Ricky Shabazz, Pam Luster, Wes Lundburg, and Carlos Turner Cortez.

The Board of Trustees and I continue to be impressed by and grateful for your work, and for the advice we receive from our community supporters as we move through the COVID-19 landscape.  Thank you, again, for your ingenuity, your understanding, and your support.  We can do this.

Stay well!


Friday, July 10, 2020 - 7:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The United Way of San Diego Financial Assistance Grant is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

Tuesday, June 30, 2020 - 1:24 pm

New Financial Assistance Available for Students - Summer

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

  • The CARES Act Grant Application is now open for Miramar College Students.  Deadline to apply is Tuesday, July 9th.  View Eligibility Requirements

 


Thursday, June 25, 2020 - 10:06 am

CARES Act Guidelines Update

Great News! The US District Court recently issued a preliminary injunction allowing us to extend Miramar College's Summer CARES Act Emergency Aid to a broader group of students. While we adjust our process to meet updated guidelines we have temporarily removed the CARES Act application link and will relaunch our application process on June 29th. Student who have already submitted a Summer CARES Act application will not need to reapply.  

In addition due to this recent change in guidelines and the overwhelming financial need of our students, we may be making adjustments to the amount of the Summer 2020 CARES Act award in order to ensure we provide financial support to as many students as possible.  More details will be provided in the coming days.

We thank you for your dedicate and endurance in continuing your studies with us during these challenging times.


Monday, June 22, 2020 - 4:30 pm

Important - NEW Financial Assistance Available for Students!

 


Friday, June 19, 2020 - 7:17 pm

COVID-19 Update #10 from Chancellor Carroll

I am writing to you on Juneteenth, the day that marks the final notice of emancipation of enslaved people in 1865. It is an ironic date, because of the callous decision in Texas to withhold this information from enslaved people who had actually been legally emancipated in 1863.  It is also a hopeful date, because it does celebrate liberation.  In the meantime, as Juneteenth celebrations and discussions are taking place across the nation, it is also a continuing time of turmoil regarding how the legacy of slavery continues to affect current events, including violence and brutality conducted by some who are charged with protecting the people, while thousands of people in every state have taken to the streets and to communication vehicles in protest. And, in the midst of all of this, the COVID-19 crisis is still with us and, in more than a dozen states, including California, is dramatically increasing.  This is a time for thoughtful action, and that is what I am writing about today.

Let me begin, as always, by thanking you for the extraordinary job you have all been doing in moving our District, City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, and Continuing Education forward in meeting our two goals:  1) ensuring the health and safety of our students and employees; and 2) ensuring the continuity of our operations.  The faculty’s great efforts to provide online instruction and the great efforts by classified professionals, supervisors, and managers to work remotely have produced the results for which we strove. Thank you all!

Let me bring you up-to-date about our current plans:

SUMMER SESSION

The summer session is successfully underway, with strong enrollment, although with not as many classes as the previous summer.  Everyone seems to have settled into the online format more comfortably.  Although this is by no means an ideal form of instruction, students are able to pursue their education in an uninterrupted manner.

CONVERSION OF SOME CLASS COMPONENTS TO ON-CAMPUS

As I have shared before and as many of you have discussed in your meetings, some classes just cannot be completed in the online format, and we have a number of students who ended the spring semester in an “in progress” mode.  Because of this situation, some laboratory, clinical, and career-technical class components are being moved to the campuses, effective June 22, so that the hands-on requirements can be met and students can complete their spring semester classes.  Strict health checks, equipment (PPE),  and protocols will be observed for these classes and everyone will be required to comply with them.  Here is a summary of these instructional changes:

·City College – Nursing (However, there are still problems in obtaining Hospital internships for clinical experience)

·Mesa College – Allied Health classes and Culinary Arts classes

·Miramar College – Fire Academy and Emergency Medical Technician Academy (Police Academy to be addressed later)

·Continuing Education – A pilot program in Welding

The Presidents, Vice Presidents, Deans, Department Chairs, and Faculty are hoping to learn a lot from this initiative, which can be useful in converting other sections in a subsequent semester as well.

THE FALL SEMESTER

The fall semester will continue to be offered online. However, the Colleges and Continuing Education are planning to expand the on-campus components for selected classes.  The health requirements for these classes will be strict.

The Presidents and the campus leadership groups are having discussions with their athletics departments regarding how to approach fall sports.  No final decisions have been made as yet and no final guidance has been provided by the California Community Colleges Athletic Association, which regulates community college intercollegiate sports. Because of the importance of sports to many of our student-athletes as an avenue for their development, as well as for their future transfer opportunities, everyone hopes to see some form of continuation – but only if it is safe to do so.

COMMENCEMENT

As was reported before, this year’s commencements will all be virtual.  City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges, Continuing Education, and the District  have been working with a company called Marching Order to develop these virtual commencements.  Although it is the company’s practice not to release the links until 3 days prior to the commencements, the date and times have been set, as follows:

All commencements will take place on Friday, July 17:

10:00 a.m.       Mesa College

1:00 p.m.         Miramar College

3:00 p.m.         Continuing Education

5:00 p.m.         City College

 

RETURNING TO CAMPUS OR DISTRICT DEPARTMENTS

As I have stated earlier, we will continue to work remotely for some time to come, probably through much if not all of the fall semester. Our return to onsite operations will depend entirely upon the status of the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and the directions we receive from health officials and the governor.  However, we are already starting the planning process to govern a safe return, which, when it does occur, will probably be phased-in.  The Chancellor’s Cabinet formed a task force to review data and models for this eventuality, and the task force has already begun its work in shaping principles, protocols, and processes for returning.  Members of the task force (who are not representing institutions, but functions) are:

Will Surbrook, Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

Susan Topham, Dean, Mesa College

Brett Bell, Vice President of Administrative Services, Miramar College

Chris Manis, Vice Chancellor, Facilities Management

Laura Murphy, Academic Senate President, Miramar College

John Bromma, Academic Senate President, Continuing Education

Neil Kovrig, Classified Senate President, Continuing Education

Jim Mahler, President, AFT Guild

Danielle Short, Representative, AFT Guild, Classified

 

Thank you, again, for your patience and support.  Please know that the Board of Trustees and I are proud of you, and that your input and suggestions are welcome as we continue to move forward together.

Stay well!


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