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* Convocation exercise carries message to students

lettersquilt.jpg

Brightly colored triangles with messages from faculty and staff at Shoreline Community College are displayed on the wall in the PUB Main Dining room. (More photos)

 

A quilt of hopes, made of heartfelt messages on brightly colored triangles of paper, is taking shape on one wall of the Main Dining Room in the Pagoda Union Building at Shoreline Community College.

 

The right angle

Want to share your hopes and dreams for students? Stop by PIO in the 1000 Building and pickup a triangle and add your thoughts.Then, just send or drop it by PIO, or bring to the all-campus lunch, and PIO staff will see to it that your contribution is included.

The idea came from a collective brainstorm of participants on the ad hoc Fall Convocation planning group at the college. With Vice President for Student Success Tonya Drake leading the way, the group moved the centerpiece event of the traditional opening week lineup from an “all-campus meeting” to a “convo cation.”

 

“The word ‘convocation’ can have many interpretations,” Drake said “In our case, I think it means a gathering in a purposeful way to build community.”

 

Along with the convocation intent came the idea to bring Gillies Malnarich, co-director of the Washington Center for Improving Undergraduate Education, as keynote speaker, and the colorful messages for students.

 

Malnarich introduced the exercise to convocation attendees.

 

“It is a letter to students,” Malnarich said. “What do you want for your students?”

 

As a guide, she gave three questions to those in the room:

 

When you leave Shoreline Community College, I hope that:

In the company of others, you will be able to …

Where you live, you will be able to …

In your relations with people around the world, you will be able to …

 

Every attendee received one of the colorful triangles and had a chance to share their hopes for the incoming students. For those who would like to participate, materials are available in the college Public Information Office.

 

Drake said this is just the first step.

 

“A fall convocation implies that there should be a spring convocation,” Drake said. “In the spring we’ll ask the students to share back with us, to create a dialogue.”

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