The End of the Summer Session (and so much more)

“It is with a heavy heart that I write you this message today” began the email message from our FC4 President, and Child Development faculty member from Daley College, Jennifer Alexander.

Here’s the rest of her message:

In the interest of time, I will only speak briefly to this matter.

Last Thursday, July 16th, the Presidents of the 6 City Colleges that currently offer Child Development classes (all except Wright) and any faculty who happened to check their email (sent at 6 pm the evening before) participated in a very short conference call with district officers.

In this conference call, we were informed that the Child Development programs at all of the colleges will be closed and are “consolidating” at Truman College for the Fall of 2016.

This notion of “consolidation” completely undermines the mission of a COMMUNITY College.

Further, the conference- call delivery of a top-down decision that significantly impacts faculty and students at 6 colleges, with no faculty having ever been included in the decision-making process, is the OPPOSITE of shared governance.

There is so much more to say about this and so many other issues that have arisen this summer: tuition hikes, registration changes….. If I wrote to you everything I want to say, this email would be 10 pages long and not ready until next week. And so I decided to send out this shorter, quick communication just to make sure you knew this is happening and also how it happened.

More to come, soon. Take heart though: we’re taking action.

Perusing a recent Chronicle summary of “How Great Colleges Distinguish Themselves,” four areas were identified as contributing to collegiate greatness: leadership, communication, alignment, and respect.

I’ll just leave that there.

Celebrate our Independence Day!

Hope everyone has a great Independence Day. I wanted to share my FAVORITE fictional Independence Day speech with you all. I first saw this movie on July 4th, 1996 with most of my family. Watching this movie at the theater was incredibly fun. The crowd oohed at the special effects and when the movie President delivered the following speech, the crowd in the theater cheered out loud and for a long time! I hope you enjoy this moment in time…..

So You Think You Can Speak

better known as the Sydney R. Daniels Black History Month Oratorical Festival, this event is on Thursday, Feb. 16, 2012 in room 103 at 2pm. There will be music, great speeches commemorating people of African descent, and refreshments!

I have attended this event since I was an adjunct and I have loved how diversity and community, the hallmarks of HWC, are present within this event. I hope to share that same sense of community with you this week! Come out and support HWC students and Black History Month!

Tabula Rasa Sunday: The Mid-Term Edition

Hi Kids!

With mid-terms behind us, and in honor of that wonderful Sunday post that allowed you, the faculty (and admins) of our college, to post whatever was on your mind this past summer, I bring you this mid-term version of Tabula Rasa! [Insert sound of royal trumpets here.]

Go ahead, say what you want. What was good, or bad, or ugly about the week? Need to vent? Do it right here. You want to leave yourself a reminder as to how you will handle week 16? Write it down and check back later. Need to just write about anything? Then have at it!

Loop Players caught in a Mousetrap?

I know you got the announcement in your inbox, but pardon my words when I say, “So what, it bears repeating. The more publicity, the better.” Besides, this blog can reach out to more folks beyond the HWC circle. Without too much editing, here’s a reconstruction of Kathryn’s email:

Loop Players’ production of

Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap

Oct. 26 – Nov. 5

The English, Speech and Theatre Department’s Loop Players are excitedly preparing for the upcoming production of Agatha Christie’s The MousetrapBelow is a Press Release with a brief synopsis, dates and times, and admission prices.  Hope you can see the show!  If you do, please do not divulge the ending of this whodunit. 🙂

Fall, 2011, Loop Players production of The Mousetrap, by Agatha Christie

The author comes forth with another hit about a group of strangers stranded in a boarding house during a snow storm, one of whom is a murderer. The suspects include the newly married couple who run the house, and the suspicions that are in their minds nearly wreck their perfect marriage. Others are a spinster with a curious background, an architect who seems better equipped to be a chef, a retired Army major, a strange little man who claims his car has overturned in a drift, and a jurist who makes life miserable for everyone. Into their midst comes a policeman, traveling on skis. He no sooner arrives, than the jurist is killed. Two down, and one to go. To get to the rationale of the murderer’s pattern, the policeman probes the background of everyone present, and rattles a lot of skeletons. Another famous Agatha Christie switch finish! Chalk up another superb intrigue for the foremost mystery writer of her time.  


Performance Dates:

Mon/Tue., Oct. 24, 25, 7:15 PM  (Campus Nights/Preview Performances) Special reduced price of $3.00

Weds. Oct 26      7:15 PM     Opening Night

Thurs. Oct. 27     2:00 PM     Matinee

Fri. Oct. 28         7:15 PM    

Sat. Oct. 29        2:00 PM     Matinee

Weds. Nov. 2      7:15 PM

Thurs. Nov. 3      2:00 PM     Matinee

Fri. Nov. 4          7:15 PM

Sat. Nov. 5         2:00 PM     Matinee, Closing performance

$5.00 Students and Seniors
$10.00 General admission

For more information, contact Kathryn Nash, Theatre Director,, 312-553-5997


Two questions Kathryn:

1. Is the student discount valid for ANY student from ANY academic institution? I take it students would need to present ID’s at the time of purchase, right?
2. Do you want your email and number on this post. If not I can remove it ASAP.

Tennis Makes for Fascinating Psychology

The US Open starts today, and this is a GREAT piece on rivalry and psychology and excellence and loneliness and intimacy between competitors.

I think I would have enjoyed it anyway, but since I read Infinite Jest this summer (a lot more on that when I have some grading to avoid), tennis is a completely different game to me, especially at the highest levels.

I don’t know how useful it is to anyone, but it’s a great read.

Website Wednesday

Website Wednesday is a regular feature in which we highlight one (or a couple) of sites from the Billions floating around the Intertoobz that just might help you with your Herculean task of educating inquiring minds. Any and all suggestions for future editions are welcome.

So I was surfing the cyberwaves in search of a good site for today’s post, Googling things like “cool websites for community college teachers.” Eventually I stumbled upon I nosed around for a bit and thought that it might be a good site to post, so I emailed the link to myself and planned to get to it later. Next I zipped over to to get a quick dose of headline news. There I see a link to Time’s 50 Best Websites of 2011. I click it. I then scroll down to the education category. What site do I see first? Mmmmhmmm.

So what is it? It’s a site run by United Nations World Food Programme that has two main goals: “Provide education to everyone for free, and help end world hunger by providing rice to hungry people for free.” They do this by having advertising sponsors who donate 10 grains of rice for every multiple-choice question answered correctly. Questions come from six different subjects (math, English, geography, chemistry, language learning, and humanities), with each category having multiple levels of difficulty. According to their totals page, they have currently donated 91864527800 grains of rice. I’m not sure how to pronounce that number, but I do know that it’s pretty darn impressive!

Tabula Rasa Sunday

This is the final Tabula Rasa Sunday post. I appreciate all who’ve shared their thoughts (via post and reply) these past couple of months. Continue to share your ideas for they are our seeds of reflection and action.

Whadayasay, one final thought before we officially begin the Fall 2011 semester?

HWFDW Schedule

Hi all,

Here is the schedule for our upcoming local portion of Faculty Development Week.  I’ve worked hard to put this together this summer.  I hope you all enjoy it.  Many thanks to those of you who are presenting.  This wouldn’t exist without you.  Thanks to V.P. Metoyer, Dean Bickford, Aretha Hall, Jo Anne Mason and of course Pres. Laackman for the 11th floor support and coordination. Also, thanks to Yev, Chao and Carrie (the officers of CAST) for everything.

Check your e-mail later as well for a few more details.