LGBTQ Ally Training

Yesterday, from 3:30 pm-6:00 pm in the CASTle on the 10th floor, the excellent Joe Hinton led a workshop and training to become an ally of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) folks on our campus at HW.

At the end of the training, Joe recommended we come out as allies. With this post, I am doing so.

And I would highly recommend the training to anyone interested in becoming an ally. During the training, in a comfortable and an open environment, we discussed our expectations, LGBTQ terminology, homophobia, heterosexism, heteronormativity, LGBTQ rights, bullying, harassment, and other LGBTQ-related topics and issues.

It was an informative and worthwhile workshop, and I am a proud ally, now.

Perhaps there is space on the Lounge for LGBTQAlly resources for our faculty?

Solution for Campus Solutions?

Hello out there…

Anyone know how to look up a student’s academic history in our fabulous new system?

When I’m writing letters of recommendation, I sometimes use students’ history as part of their story. I’ll be dang-nabbed if I can figure out how to find an academic history on our new and “improved” system, though.

Any ideas?

Tuesday Teaching Topic: Mid-Term Edition

This week’s question is short, since you and I both have a mountain of mid-terms to grade.

Are there certain times of the semester where your teaching suffers because of structural elements built into the semester? Mid-terms are an obvious one: we all need to submit grades within the next week. For some, perhaps this is as easy as inserting a stack of scan-trons into a machine, inserting the numbers on blackboard, then transferring those grades to PeopleSoft or whatever newfangled thing we have now. For others, the past two weeks have meant staying up late reading essays, providing commentary, having one’s heart constantly broken by disappointments, then made whole again when we see a struggling student become a determined student and produce something that makes our hearts swell with pride and joy.

Me? I was so busy grading mid-term logic tests over the past couple days, I completely forgot to write a TTT this morning.

Good luck with the rest of the mid-term season, and I’ll see you at Week 10.

Glitch in the new Myfaculty.ccc

The new system for checking rosters, submitting grades, and everything else is about a day old now. In some administrator’s great wisdom, releasing the new system in the middle of mid-terms week seemed like the prudent choice, in order to challenge faculty to learn a new system at the same time that they are giving mid-terms, grading mid-terms, and spending most of their in-office time coaching students and talking to them about their papers. Overcoming obstacles makes us stronger, after all. Thanks for the obstacle!

Anyway, I’ve already heard that some faculty are having difficulty accessing their rosters and so forth. I hit this issue yesterday too, but after some tinkering around, I found a little glitch in the system, and also a solution to get to the content you need.

The short solution is this: once you are logged into the faculty and staff side of, you will see two tabs, “faculty” and “Staff,” in the upper left, with the buttons “home” and “help and resources” directly underneath. It looks like the “faculty” tab is selected by default. However, like so many other things in today’s world, this is nothing but an illusion. Even though it looks as though “faculty” is selected, it is not. Click “faculty” again. Now, like Harry Potter trying to get on his first train to Hogwarts, a third option will magically appear between “home” and “help and resources.” This button is “faculty center,” and it is the secret button you’ll want to hit.

Once you pass through this portal, you will find yourself in the new, fantastical land of grade rosters, schedules, and your other familiar tools with a new interface. This interface still seems a bit glitchy, but if you hit the “my schedule” tab, you can click the little cluster of people icons next to the class names to see your beloved rosters.

Tuesday Teaching Topic: The Affect of Age Diversity in the Classroom

Today’s teaching topic discusses a topic that is perhaps easy to forget, but always has an affect. Some of our classes are occupied almost solely by 18-20 year olds. Some of our classes tend to have students aged 21 to 28 or so. Some of our classes have students who are older, more experienced, and wiser than we are ourselves.

In your experience, what affect does age have on your classroom? On your teaching style? Are there advantages to having age diversity, or older students, or only younger students? Do these situations provide any special obstacles to you teaching style?


Comments on the Book Price Symposium held at Kennedy King on 2/27/2015

One week ago, I received the following forwarded email:


I hope all is well.  As the Provost stated below, Academic Governance Compliance Educational Quality will convene a symposium with Department Chairs, Faculty members and Administrators. The invited faculty member should be the faculty responsible for making book adoption selections.

The symposium will allow faculty to review data on textbook selections, purchases/cost, and opportunities for cost savings for City Colleges of Chicago students while at the same time maintaining educational quality.

The event will take place Friday, February 27th (8:30 am to 4:30 pm) at Kennedy-King College, U Building located at 6301 S. Halsted, Chicago, IL, 60621. Continental Breakfast will be served at 8:30 am and the session will be start at 9:15 am in the Theater.

 We would like to invite the Department Chairs/Faculty members in the following disciplines:

  • English 98, 100, 101, 102
  • Mathematics 98, 99, 125, 118
  • Computer Information Systems (CIS) 121
  • Biology 121, 126
  • Microbiology 233
  • Chemistry 121
  • Psychology 201
  • Reading 125
  • Speech 101

 Could you please help by sharing this email with your Department Chairs/Faculty members in the following disciplines?

To RSVP, please click here

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Best Regards,

Preston L. Harden

Associate Vice Chancellor

City Colleges of Chicago”



Suppose we promised our incoming students that if they put in the hard work to earn a degree, they might someday be making a grand total of $21,792 per year. Would many students think that was worth the effort?

Suppose there was a business hiring our students, and paid them $21,792 per year, without benefits, and without job security. Would we want our students to work there? Would we consider that business as an ethical workplace? Would we encourage our students to work there?