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Inside Story for Friday, December 19, 2008

Instructor Barb Brodsky Receives Diane Donelson Spirit Award

In 2005, MCC’s Board of Governors adopted a resolution to establish an award to recognize employees who exemplify the enduring qualities and compassionate spirit that former MCC Board of Governors member Diane Donelson exhibited in her interaction with others.

This year’s recipient of the Diane Donelson Spirit Award is Barb Brodsky. Brodsky is an adjunct instructor in both the Adult Basic Education department and the Spanish department. She has taught at MCC for five years, and in her work with Adult Basic Education, she has taught both noncredit ESL and GED and been a lead orientation instructor for the department.

Brodsky has worked on several special initiatives including a program that uses the concept of team teaching English language skills and welding skills to transition students directly into employment with a business partner. A second special initiative she has helped to develop includes working with one of MCC’s agency partners to provide Nebraska’s only Spanish-language GED preparation classes.

While her strong commitment to MCC and its students has never wavered, Brodsky has faced much personal adversity. Through it all, she has kept a positive outlook and has effectively balanced her personal and family needs with the needs of her students. In this way, Brodsky is an outstanding role model to students who must juggle their desire to complete their studies with their own personal responsibilities.

Brodsky continues to be an advocate for her students and to provide leadership within the GED program. Those who know Brodsky describe her as bubbly, hard working, committed to students, passionate, a team player, creative and a true spokesperson for MCC.

Brodsky has expressed compassion for her ESL students by taking a personal interest in their struggles. She is the first one to get birthday or get well cards for her students, call them at home if their attendance drops and assist them in the transition process to enroll in credit classes.

Brodsky is a leader. She helps other instructors and the office staff whenever needed. She also assists with training for ESL orientation and intake processes. She provides a good example of how creative, team-teaching concepts can work if you have the right instructor to develop a working curriculum.

Brodsky personifies the Diane Donelson Spirit Award. She is a truly gifted individual who makes this College a better place by embodying the spirit and evoking the enthusiasm, compassion and devotion of its namesake.

Service Awards Presented at Employee Holiday Reception

MCC employees were recognized for their years of service at the College at this week’s employee holiday reception. Service awards were presented to:

30 Years
Robert W. Baker, Jules J. DeSalvo, LB Longbrake, Marsha K. Reed, James M. Revoy, Connie Young

25 Years
Sarah (Sally) L. Oswalt

20 Years
Alice Barritt, Kathy Casper, Beverly Forsberg, Stanley Friesen, Michael Hun, Frank Jura, Stephen A. Leichleiter, Roger L. Miller, Patrick Nichols, Thomas M. Price, Donna Stadtlander, Helen Tanderup, JoAnne Whitmyre, Nancy Zagozda

15 Years
Christopher C. Agee, Adriel C. Baltimore, Connie L. Buller, Ernestine F. Crossley, Frank Edler, David K. Ho, Patricia M. Hollins, Larry Hoppel, Dr. Ken Jones, Lonnie W. Lentsch, James McArdle, Tina Pebley, Deb Reiner, Victoria J. Spilker, Dan C. Stalnaker Sr, Mary L. Umberger

10 Years
Dario Andino Miranda, Judy Armstrong, Jose' Badillo, Monica Beasley, Ayanna N. Boykins, H. Lynn Bradman, Terry M. Casey, Michael Catherwood, Sally Collins, Patricia L. Crisler, David L. Eledge, Debi Elgan, Richard Jaeckel Jr., James E. Johnson, Craig LaFarr, Linda C. Lutz, Alvin Motley, David Nielsen, Teresa Ramirez-Cherko, Mary Jo Scott, Greg Smith, Dan Stalnaker Jr

5 Years
Earlene M. Brittingham, David J. Budin, Andrea Diehl, Kurt E. Glover-Ettrich, Cynthia K. Gooch, Judy Gouldsmith, Brooke LaFarr, Robert L. Ligon, Melvin Mays, Todd Morrissey, Robin Perkins, Edie Sample, Katie Sutko Twit, Jean E. Templeton, Kevin V. Throne

College Receives Two Awards from the Public Relations Society of America

The Nebraska Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America recognized MCC’s Marketing and Public Relations with two Paper Anvil awards at the annual PRSA Gala last week. The Foundation Giving Guide received an award of excellence for special purpose publication, and the 2008 Great Plains Theatre Conference media kit received an award of merit in the electronic media kit category.

The PRSA is the world's largest organization for public relations professionals with nearly 32,000 professional and student members.

Art Faculty Selected for Juried Art Show

MCC art instructors Deborah Murphy, Michael Burton and Gregg Pejsar received awards at the 61st Juried Art Show at the Sioux City Art Center. These three instructors were included in a total of 25 who were selected to participate. Congratulations!

Graphic Communication Arts and Design Students and Instructors Receive AIGA Awards

The Show, hosted annually by AIGA Nebraska, exhibits the best in graphic design, photography and illustration produced in the region, and includes entries from design professionals and students, featuring both published and unpublished work.

Graphic Communication Arts and Design student Josh Schwieger received two of the three gold awards in the student category for his CD design and trading cards. He also received a bronze award for a direct mail postcard. Justin Schafer and Craig Hughes both received a bronze awards for poster designs.

MCC faculty Donovan Beery and Nicole Blauw won silver and bronze awards for a joint poster project. Beery also won an additional bronze award. Instructor Nate Voss received a bronze award for poster design, and Luann Matthies received a bronze in the experimental category.

Ethnicity Codes Revised

On Friday, Jan. 2, 2009, MCC will revise our current race and ethnicity codes to meet new federal guidelines. In addition, Datatel has updated Colleague screens so the College can collect race and ethnicity information correctly. The new codes will be communicated to all staff members that are responsible for entering/updating student demographic information in Colleague.

The Department of Education requires that institutions collect this information by asking two questions: 1. Are you Hispanic/Latino?
2. For individuals who are Non Hispanic/Latino, they would select one or more of the races for the second question.

The changes for the new ethnicity and race fields will be effective Friday, Jan. 2, 2009.

Current Race/Ethnic Codes New Ethnic Codes  New Race Codes
HIL – Hispanic/Latino  HIS – Hispanic/Latino  AN – American/Alaska Native
 AIA – American Indian or Alaskan Native  NHS – Non Hispanic/Latino  AS – Asian
 BAA – Black or African American    BL – Black or African American
 NHP – Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander    HP – Hawaiian/Pacific Islander
 WHT – White    WH – White
 TWO – Two or more races    
 REU – Race/Ethnicity Unknown    
 NRA – Non-Resident Alien    

For questions or concerns regarding race/ethnic reporting changes, contact Cheryl Goodman, MIS Colleague Support Specialist at 457-2267. 

Noncredit classes for employees - a reminder

The Community Education Department reminds us that MCC employees are welcome to enroll in the noncredit classes advertised in the Community Education mailer, but there are some limitations:

1. Classes and workshops designated "No Discount" with an asterisk may not be taken for tuition remission.
2. Employees are permitted to enroll only on a "space available" basis when using tuition remission. This means that the Community Education Department is required to monitor classes and to make sure the general public has first priority.
3. Classes and workshops where lab fees and supply fees are included in the tuition could be designated ineligible for tuition remission.
4. It is important to submit the Tuition Remission Waiver Form no later than 10 days before class. This allows the Community Education Department to meet their requirement to allow the public first priority to enroll.

Our Community Education Department also requests that employees please show the courtesy of not dropping out with short notice for a class or workshop for which they have enrolled. (Last minute drops do not allow the department time to call wait lists or to make changes with instructors.) 

And even more importantly - please do not be a no show for a class or workshop! When an employee takes a slot in a class and doesn’t come to class, it often results in an employee taking a seat that a person from the community could have used.

Voicemail During Holiday Recess

As the holiday break approaches, it’s time to set your voicemail to provide an alternate greeting for callers.

As an example: “You have reached the desk of Jane Smith at Metropolitan Community College; the College is closed for the holiday break. I will return on January 2, 2009, so please leave a message after the tone.”


“You have reached the desk of Jane Smith at Metropolitan Community College. The College is closed for holiday break beginning December 25 through January 1. I will be out of my office starting December 22 and will return on January 5. If you would like to leave a message, please do so after the tone.”

The procedure to record an alternate greeting when you are going to be out of the office for any length of time (i.e. vacation) is:

• Access your voice mailbox.
• Press 4 for setup options
• Press 1 for greetings /call transfer
• Press 1 for greetings
• You will hear: “Your current greeting is the standard greeting... “
• The system plays your recorded greeting. You must listen to this entire greeting before pressing any keys.
• Press 2 for alternate greeting.
• The system will play: “Your current greeting is the alternate greeting” and will play what you have recorded (if anything).
• If you are satisfied with this greeting, press * to exit. Otherwise, follow the prompts to re-record.
• This automatically activates your alternate greeting.

You can contact the Help Desk at ext. 2900 for assistance.

Remember when you return from holiday break, to change back to your standard greeting.

The procedure to return to your standard greeting is:

• Access your voice mailbox.
• Press 4 for setup options.
• Press 1 for greetings /call transfer.
• Press 1 for greetings.
• Press 2 to turn off your alternate greeting.
• Press * to exit.


Beginning with the Jan. 15 pay date, direct deposit pay advices will only be available using WebAdvisor. You can view and/or print your pay advice using WebAdvisor.

Each payday you will have instant access to your pay information. The remittance advices will be kept online for a two-year period, providing long-term storage for your pay records. WebAdvisor also includes leave and stipend information.

Simply open WebAdvisor; the WebAdvisor page can be bookmarked on your favorites list for quick access in the future. You can also access WebAdvisor through the Faculty and Staff Resource page on the MCC web site.

• Click on the “Log In” tab at the top.
• Log in using your College network user login and password.
• Click on “Employees.”
• Click on “Pay Advices.”
• Click on the date you wish to view.

If you have any questions regarding the electronic version of your pay advice, call Gary Kucera in Payroll at ext. 2277.

IRS Standard Mileage Rate Update for 2009

The IRS announced the standard mileage rates for 2009. Effective Jan. 1, 2009, the reimbursement rate will be $0.55 for business use of a vehicle, $0.24 for moving and medical expenses and $0.14 for service to charitable organizations. For the second half of 2008, the reimbursement rate actually was higher, at $0.585.

Students Elected to 2008-09 Student Advisory Council

Six students were elected to serve the College on the Student Advisory Council recently:

Andrea Aken

Andreá Aken

Studying: administrative assistant

Representing: Elkhorn Valley Campus

Dalana Bernt Dalana Bernt

Studying: nursing

Representing: Bellevue Center
Tracy Diehm Tracy Diehm

Studying: respiratory therapy

Representing: South Omaha Campus
Tabitha Knowles Tabitha Knowles

Studying: business administration

Representing: Sarpy Center
no photo available

Paul Stewart

Studying: diesel technology

Representing: Applied Technology Center

Queen Tucker Queen Esther Tucker

Studying: business management

Representing: Fort Omaha Campus

Diaper Drive Collects 20,000 at Sarpy Center in One Night

More than 20,000 diapers were collected the evening of Dec. 11 at MCC’s Sarpy Center for the MCC-sponsored Diaper Drive that benefits the Lydia House. Thank you to those that donated and showed your support.

Reach for the Stars Thanks

The Single Parent Homemaker staff would like to thank everyone who donated door prize items to the ninth annual Reach for the Stars single parent conference on Nov. 21 at the South Omaha Campus. The conference was attended by more than 120 people, the majority of which were young single parents and high school counselors.

Attendance to the conference increases every year. Single parents attending the conference are provided the opportunity to attend workshops on topics which include parenting, nutrition, relationships and health issues.

Save the Date for Nebraska Women in Higher Education Leadership Conference

The Nebraska Women in Higher Education Leadership Conference will be Friday, April 17, 2009 at Union College in Lincoln. The theme for the 2009 conference is Women's Leadership in Turbulent Times. Contact Julie Langholdt if you would like registration materials sent to you once they are available.

MCC Hosts viewing, discussion of documentary A Time for Burning

Mark Hoeger addresses the audience at MCC's viewing and discussion of A Time For Burning

More than 60 people attended the Dec. 10 event at the Fort Omaha Campus. 

Hoeger and crowd
Audience members

More than 60 people attended a viewing and discussion of A Time for Burning at the Fort Omaha Campus on Dec. 10, as a part of MCC’s Diversity Matters Film Series. The event was in collaboration with It’s Time Omaha.

The film was introduced by Mark Hoeger, co-president of Oberon Entertainment and a 22-year member of Augustana Lutheran Church. Hoeger joined A’Jamal Byndon of Catholic Charities and John Heaston, publisher/editor of Pioneer Publishing and a leader in the It’s Time Omaha efforts, to facilitate a discussion with audience members.

Filmed in Omaha in 1965, one year after the federal Civil Rights Act became law, A Time for Burning follows the attempts of a young Lutheran minister of then all-white church Augustana Lutheran to reach out to a nearby African-American congregation. Despite an earnest mission to bring the community together, the minister, Rev. William Youngdahl, faces resistance from his parishioners and meets a young North Omaha barber — Ernie Chambers — who explains to him why his efforts at integration won’t work.

Directed by Bill Jersey and Barbara Connell, A Time for Burning was broadcast nationwide on public television in 1966. It received an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary the following year, and in 2005, 40 years after the events featured in the film took place, it was selected by the National Film Registry for preservation in the Library of Congress.

Staff Directory Updates

Tania Kuisma, FOC Bldg 8
Bobby Loud, Executive Director of Bellevue Center, Bellevue Center, 827-8502
Robin Nosworthy, Interim Director of Student Services, FOC Bldg 10, 457-2808

Separations, Last Day
Christopher Simpson, 12/15/08
Joshua McNeil, 12/22/08

MCC Job Openings

For information about the College’s open positions and how to apply, visit www.mccneb.edu/hr or call the jobline at (402) 738-4050. Applications are also online at www.mccnebjobs.com.

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