closed for the holidays

In observation of the holiday season, Valencia Community College and Valencia Foundation offices will be closed beginning Wednesday, December 22, 2010. We will reopen on Monday, January 3, 2010.

We hope that you will consider making your year-end gift, if you are able, to support deserving individuals. Every gift – no matter how modest – will give a student a hand-up in achieving their own potential. All gifts are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. Any gift that is dated before Jan. 1, 2011 will count toward the current tax year. (Checks should be dated by Dec. 31, 2010 to qualify). You may also make a credit card donation through our secure website at www.valencia.org.

 We wish you a peaceful and blessed new year.

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valencia trustees move to become “valencia college”

Valencia Community College will soon be known as Valencia College after trustees today approved President Sanford Shugart’s recommendation to rename the school to more accurately convey its mission and program mix.

“The name Valencia College conveys who we are and all that we offer and may yet deliver in fulfillment of our mission,” said Shugart in an e-mail to faculty and staff earlier this week. “It is consistent with the evolving higher education landscape in Florida and with our position in it.”

Shugart stressed that the college remains committed to its core principles of an “open door,” affordable tuition, and a learning-centered philosophy for which it has become known as one of the best community colleges in the nation. Valencia produces more associate degree graduates than any two-year college in America.

In their discussions, trustees emphasized that Valencia is now the “primary on ramp” to higher education for Central Florida with more than 60,000 students. More than twice as many local high school graduates enroll at Valencia than at all public universities in the state combined.

“Valencia loves its role in serving a very broad range of students in this community and is arguably one of the best in the nation at achieving the vision of a community college,” said Raymer F. Maguire III, chair of Valencia’s District Board of Trustees.

The college’s highly successful guaranteed transfer program into UCF, known as DirectConnect, has also turned Valencia into a sought-after college destination for many students. More than 20 percent of UCF’s upper division is made up of Valencia transfers with many in the pipeline, thanks to the seamless transition.

Valencia launches its own bachelor’s degree programs for the first time in its history next fall, with electrical and computer engineering technology and radiologic and imaging science. They add to an already strong presence of bachelor’s programs offered through UCF’s regional campus at Valencia.

“We’re pleased to see Valencia moving forward with the offering of select bachelor’s degrees,” said UCF Board of Trustee Chair Rick Walsh. “I believe our partnership can only be strengthened as we work together to ensure students a path toward degree completion.”

On Valencia’s West Campus, UCF offers complete bachelor’s degrees in applied science, architecture, business administration, criminal justice, electrical engineering, elementary education, interdisciplinary studies, legal studies, nursing, political science, psychology and sociology. On Osceola Campus, UCF offers bachelor’s degrees in applied science, business administration, elementary education, interdisciplinary studies and psychology.

Valencia’s workforce offerings are highly regarded with signature programs in film, nursing, hospitality and culinary, digital media, and computer technology.

Driven by a belief that “anyone can learn anything under the right circumstances,” Valencia has instituted several innovative strategies to improve academic performance for students in their critical first year of college, including linking paired courses to strengthen learning, and placing specially trained student leaders in the classroom to offer support and tutoring.

The success of these reforms has earned Valencia support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation through non-profit group MDC, Inc., who gave Valencia almost three-quarters of a million dollars last year to expand its efforts to close educational achievement gaps across racial and ethnic lines.

Valencia also operates several programs, including Take Stock in Children and Bridges, that identify at-risk students prior to college and provides them with mentors coupled with financial support throughout their academic careers.

Valencia operates six campuses and centers in Orange and Osceola counties offering credit and continuing education programs. In 2012 it will open a new campus in Lake Nona. The college was founded in 1967 as Valencia Junior College and renamed in 1972 as Valencia Community College.

The college conducted a year-long consultation with students, faculty, and business leaders inviting them to share their thoughts on Valencia’s mission. Many attended campus forums and weighed in on the issue. “We were very open, thoughtful and deliberate about this step,” said Shugart. “Valencia holds a unique position in this community but also in many hearts and minds. This move comes at the right time and for the right reasons.”

The name change will take effect July 1, 2011. Officials say the college will incur only minimal costs to implement the name, leaving unchanged its well-recognized Valencia logo, adopted in the mid 1990s. The official college seal, used since 1967, will see slight modifications.

Source: Marketing and Strategic Communications, Valencia Community College; Valencia News; http://news.valenciacc.edu

and the Exemplary Practice Award goes to…

Valencia VP Wins Exemplary Practice Award for Fiscal Stewardship

Keith Houck, vice president of Administrative Services for Valencia Community College, received the 2010 Exemplary Practice Award from the organization of Community College Business Officers at their Annual International Conference on November 15 in South Carolina.

The award was based on Valencia’s demonstrated excellence, under Mr. Houck’s leadership, in addressing ten key business imperatives that resulted in reduced costs, improved efficiencies and new sources of income. As a result, Valencia was able to generate more than $3 million a year in operational savings and added more than $400,000 a year from new revenue sources.

“This was really a team effort that could not have been accomplished without everyone’s assistance,” Houck said, who oversees the college’s business, financial and information resources, as well as facilities management.

The CCBO is made up of business officers and other professionals from community colleges across the U.S. and Canada.

CONGRATULATIONS KEITH!

Source: Marketing and Strategic Communications, Carol Traynor, 407.582.1015, ctraynor@valenciacc.edu

giving and receiving

Our student’s lives are impacted tremendously by the kindness of our donors. This is where your generosity makes a huge difference. Your tax-deductible donation goes 100 percent to students in need. Please visit http://www.VALENCIA.org and make a donation today.

Over the last year, Valencia has experienced tremendous growth. A look back into the college’s history revealed that in 1967 Valencia opened its doors with 567 students. Enrollment has steadily grown during the past 42 years, this last school year Valencia received a total of 67,001 students.

In this economy and with this job market, our students are more determined than ever to improve their opportunities in life, they want to give their families an optimistic view of the future.

By working a second job, cutting family expenses and packaging federal aid and scholarships, many students manage to cobble almost enough to pay tuition, often forgetting that textbooks are an additional expense and can cost just as much.

As we unwrap gifts and wrap up another year, this is the time when we think most of others. The familiar saying reminds us it is “better to give than to receive.” As the year winds to a close, I ask you to give hope.

Our student’s lives are impacted tremendously by the kindness of our donors. This is where your generosity makes a huge difference. Your tax-deductible donation goes 100 percent to students in need. A gift of $95 will purchase a textbook; $2,391 will cover tuition for one year.

To make a contribution, please visit us online at www.VALENCIA.org and click on >>Give Now for the secure website.  You may also send your gift to Valencia Foundation, 190 S. Orange Avenue, Orlando FL 32801. Every dollar makes a difference.

This holiday season, please take a moment and consider the gifts you would like to make – no matter how large or modest.

I wish many blessings to you and your family in the new year. 

Happy holidays!

the godfather of Valencia

Founding UCF President Remembered

The University of Central Florida’s founding president, Dr. Charles Millican passed away today. A strong supporter of Valencia during its founding and throughout the college’s development, Valencia Community College unveiled a plaque to honor Dr. Millican and the role he played when it dedicated the joint UCF-Valencia building on its West Campus last year, named the University Center.

Valencia Community College president, Sanford Shugart, issued the following statement upon learning of the higher education leader’s death at 94:

“Charles Millican, the founding president of the University of Central Florida, in 1967 endorsed the creation of a new junior college in Orlando. He was countering initial local resistance to the notion. His support helped pave the way for Valencia’s establishment. If Dr. Millican is considered the father of UCF, he also could be considered the godfather of Valencia.”

Source: Marketing and Strategic Communications, Valencia Community College; Valencia News; http://news.valenciacc.edu

philanthropy: creating a legacy of learning

There are other ways to support Valencia, create student scholarships, and enhance education in our community. By naming Valencia Community College Foundation as a beneficiary through a will or amending a will with a codicil, you can make a commitment in support of education with your deferred donation.

Philanthropy has built remarkable college institutions, cured deadly diseases and continues to fund research and facilities dedicated to our health and education.  This generosity also funds religious, environmental and social efforts globally and locally.

The truth is that while many are limited by the realities of a day-to-day budget, a little careful planning today makes it possible for almost anyone to do more in the future through a planned gift. 

There are other ways to support Valencia, create student scholarships, and enhance education in our community.  By naming Valencia Community College Foundation as a beneficiary through a will or amending a will with a codicil, you can make a commitment in support of education with your deferred donation.

Valencia provides an authentic, learning-centered environment with giving, talented teaching and service-oriented professionals who care for and lead students to discover their greatest potential. 

If you haven’t already, please consider supporting the Valencia Foundation with your learning legacy, your gift makes a real difference for the students we teach and serve every day.

If you would like more information on planned giving, sample bequest language, completing a legacy gift form or just have general scholarship questions please contact Donna Marino at 407.582.3128 or e-mail dmarino@valenciacc.edu.

For more than 40 years, Valencia has swung open the doors of learning in Central Florida. We envision a day when no individual in our community is shut out of college because of family finances.

With your support, I believe this community can make that happen.