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Friday, Oct. 2, 2009

News stories

» Search process continues with Oct. 16 meeting
» No more paper pay advices - it’s all online
» Keep your insurance rate low - participate in the Fall Wellness Challenge
» SPC honored by Rays and Green Building Council
» Values & Visions luncheon draws a crowd
» Josh Knipp asks a librarian – to marry him
» Enrolled Student Survey online through Oct. 15
» Staff, faculty consider QEP progress
» Fall Critical Thinking Institute at SP/G Oct. 9
» FACC service project supports troops
» Lifelong Learning courses
» EAP offers free Frontline Newsletters
» Flu shot update

Calendar notes

» Meeting notices
» October birthdays/anniversaries (pdf)
» October Visual Calendar (pdf)
» BOT Meeting Highlights (pdf)

Regular Columns

Good 4 You» Good 4 You - NEW
» Cultural Corner
» Locker Room
» Wellness at SPC
» SPC This Week
» Sustainability
» Onward & Upward
» SPC TV

Wellness Challenge lgo

Keep your insurance rate low
Participate in the Fall Wellness Challenge

The Fall 2009 Wellness Challenge kicks off Monday, Oct. 12 for all budgeted employees — whether or not they are covered by Aetna. Not only can you get healthier through this challenge, you can save money, too.

Employees who want to keep their reduced medical insurance rate must complete a wellness activity by Dec. 31 or risk being charged about $1,000 more over the course of a year. Successful completion of the Wellness Challenge is one way to meet that wellness activity requirement. Read entire story »


2010 Spring graduation date set
SPC’s Spring Commencement Ceremony will be held on Saturday, May 8, at 10 a.m., Tropicana Field, St. Petersburg.

Search process continues with Oct. 16 meeting

The St. Petersburg College Board of Trustees will meet at 2 p.m. Oct. 16 at the District Office (6021 142nd Ave. N, Largo) to determine the credentials, qualities and characteristics it will seek in the next college president. Trustees also will discuss the composition, structure and appointment process of a search committee.

Carl M. Kuttler Jr. announced in July that he was retiring after 31 years as President.

At a public forum Sept. 21, the board heard from 34 community and college representatives who spoke about traits and skills they would like in a new president. On Oct 16, the board will consider that input before finalizing its expectations.

The public is welcome.

Visit the Presidential Search News Archive page for previous updates.

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No more paper pay advices - it’s all online

Self-service pay advices are now only available on MySPC.

Starting with Oct. 9 pay, you won’t have to wait for your pay advice to make its way through interoffice mail. Instead, you will be able to view your pay advice at your own convenience on MySPC (my.spcollege.edu). After you log in, select “View Paycheck History,” as shown below.

pay advanceStill want a hard copy? You can print it out as needed.

This only applies for those who have direct deposit; there is no change for those who get a paper check.

All employees have network IDs enabling them to access MySPC. However, if you don’t recall your account information, please contact the Technical Support Help Desk at Ext. 2795.

 

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Keep your insurance rate low - participate in the Fall Wellness Challenge 

The Fall 2009 Wellness Challenge kicks off Monday, Oct. 12 for all budgeted employees — whether or not they are covered by Aetna. Not only can you get healthier through this challenge, you can save money, too.

Employees who want to keep their reduced medical insurance rate must complete a wellness activity by Dec. 31 or risk being charged about $1,000 more over the course of a year. Successful completion of the Wellness Challenge is one way to meet that wellness activity requirement.

Even if you pay the regular insurance rate, you are welcome to participate in the Wellness Challenge.  As a matter of fact, if you successfully complete a wellness activity and, come December, you and your covered dependents are not smoking, you can switch to the discounted rate in January.

Because the Wellness Challenge gives points for eating right, drinking right and practicing other healthy habits, even those who have difficulty exercising can earn the minimum required points (500) without the physical activity.

In a few days, each employee will receive an e-mail with the official Wellness Challenge tracker sheet, guidelines and a sign-up form/survey.  It’s imperative that you complete the very short survey immediately to enroll in the Wellness Challenge.
           
Employees who are not interested in the Wellness Challenge but want the discounted rate must complete Aetna’s online “Healthy Living Program.”  See the story in the Sept. 25 edition of the Blue & White for details.

If you have any questions on the Fall 2009 Wellness Challenge, please contact Steve Malla, Wellness Coordinator, at wellnesschallenge@spcollege.edu or Ext. 3083. 

Wellness Challenge highlights

  • Six weeks, from Oct. 12 – Nov. 22.
  • Guides you to make positive daily and weekly choices
  • Point system to reward your accomplishments
  • Easy tracking system to meet your goals
  • Educational resources
  • Balancing mental, social, and physical wellness
  • Awards and recognition

Changes from last year

  • Participate solo or on a team of six
  • Improved goals
  • Enhanced point system
  • More bonus opportunities
  • Official Wellness Challenge e-mail wellnesschallenge@spcollege.edu

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Charles Canerday, Susan Reiter, Jason Green honored by Rays and Green Building CouncilSPC honored by Rays and
Green Building Council 

St. Petersburg College was honored on Sept. 23 by the Tampa Bay Rays and the US Green Building Council as a “LEEDer in Our Community” for its commitment to building sustainable, LEED-certified buildings on the St Petersburg/Gibbs and Clearwater campuses.

From left; Charles Canerday, Architect, Canerday, Belfsky and Arroyo; Susan Reiter, SPC Vice President, Facilities Planning & Institutional Services; and Jason Green, SPC Sustainability Coordinator, were introduced before the Rays game with the Mariners.

 

 

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Dr. Kuttler speaks at last week's Values & Visions luncheon in Tarpon Springs.Values & Visions luncheon draws a crowd

Carl M. Kuttler Jr., President of St. Petersburg College, recently shared his vision for the college and its impact on the community at a Values & Visions event at the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art in Tarpon Springs.

An audience of approximately 90 business and community leaders in Tarpon Springs listened to Kuttler talk about new college initiatives and the importance of the Tarpon Springs community in support of the college.

Tarpon Springs Provost Conferlete Carney also highlighted new initiatives on the Tarpon Spring Campus and the significance of the community in helping the college to grow and serve the needs of North Pinellas.

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Josh Knipp asks a librarian – to marry him

askJosh Knipp, a Human Resources Specialist at the college, wanted to ask Paula Bagwell, a librarian on the Clearwater Campus, to marry him. But he wanted to do it in a way that she would remember.

He succeeded, with a little help from some other SPC staff.

Josh got together with Kim Wolff, Paula’s supervisor at the library, and they coordinated a plan involving Ask A Librarian, a library reference service.

 “Ask A Librarian is a virtual chat service,” Paula said. “Patrons can sign on to it, and we help them with reference questions.”

On a recent day, Kim asked Paula if she would take over the Ask A Librarian online chat service in the library’s reference area rather than in her office.

 “I said, 'Sure',” Paula said. “I really didn’t think very much about it.”

That was Josh's cue.

“Initially, I logged onto the Web site on a cell phone from the building next door. But then the Internet on my phone cut out,” Josh said.  “So, I entered the building slightly panicked, but Sue at the front desk suggested I use the computers in the library. On my way there, I actually walked within about 10 feet of Paula. If she had seen me she would have known something was up, but luckily she didn’t.”

Paula’s online chat message signaled a customer in the queue.

“As a joke, Josh had always threatened to sign in on the Ask A Librarian line and ask a question when I was working, and I had always told him not to do it because we only answer serious questions,” she said. “This time, when I picked up the customer call and took the request, he asked me to marry him on the virtual chat.

“I said yes.”

Paula asked Josh if he was in the library, and he appeared, ring in hand. There was an obstacle, however.

“A big guy was standing right between Paula and me and I had to squeeze around him,” Josh said. “I said, 'Pardon me, sir, I have to do something in that direction.' He was probably wondering why I was looking at him with a ring in my hand.”

From there on it was pretty traditional. Josh got down on one knee, asked the question one more time and slipped the ring onto Paula’s finger.

Kim Wolff had brought a cake, and everyone celebrated.

Josh and Paula had different explanations for Josh’s engagement plan.

“I wanted to do something creative,” said Josh, who has worked at the college since July. “Paula has been doing this library thing, and I thought it would be a unique way to do it.”  

“I think the element of surprise was important to him, and he knows how much I love my profession and I think he wanted to incorporate both of those elements,” said Paula, an SPC full-timer since December. “Also, it was our two-year anniversary, but I thought we’d just go out to dinner or something.”

No wedding date has been set. When it happens, however, there may be another SPC angle.

“We want to get married at the Palladium,” she said.

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Enrolled Student Survey online through Oct. 15

Can you hear me now

Each year, the Enrolled Student Survey gives SPC students a voice that can make a difference. The results of the survey are used to help us improve the academic and support services we offer our students. 
 
The survey is part of a collegewide assessment system aimed at delivering quality academic and support services to our students. Once again this year, the Enrolled Student Survey will be administered online. Promos linking to the survey are posted on the college home page, MySPC, ANGEL and in SPC This Week.

All SPC faculty are asked to promote the survey to students, encouraging them to make their voices heard.

Questions about the survey should be directed to the Department of Institutional Research and Effectiveness at Ext. 5237.

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Staff, faculty consider QEP progress

Staff and faculty members of the Quality Enhancement Committee (QEC) gathered at the EpiCenter Sept. 25 to hear about progress in the implementation of SPC’s Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP).

The plan first was conceived as part of SPC’s accreditation process, which was finalized at the end of 2007. The plan gives the college a vehicle to continually improve the quality of the education product it offers.

Janice Thiel, Director of the QEP, said the meeting updated the college community on implementation of the plan and solicited input on professional development.

“With faculty, student and community input, the QEC began developing the QEP back in 2004, and we are now in the process of implementing it,” she said. “Those who attended gave us their input to make sure we are staying on track. We had a similar meeting back in February.”

The group also discussed progress made in the area of professional development items that faculty members will be able to carry back to the classroom in order to have a positive impact on their students.

“I anticipate that we will meet once or twice a year to go over the QEP, which runs through 2012,” Thiel said.

In all, 32 faculty and staff members took part in the meeting, she said. Some have been involved in the QEP process for years, she added; others are newer to the QEC with interest in what will be in store for their programs beginning in 2010.

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Fall Critical Thinking Institute at SP/G Oct. 9

The Fall Critical Thinking Institute will be on the St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus from 8:30 a.m. to noon on Friday, Oct. 9.

The event features a Faculty Champion Discussion panel in which instructors from Business Technologies, Communications, Library and Nursing will provide an overview of their activities since beginning the critical thinking initiative earlier this year.

Later, there will be two breakout sessions with a variety of presentations designed to provide skills and knowledge about best practices and resources that faculty may use to enhance their teaching for critical thinking.

The day will end with an optional information session for those disciplines slated to begin the critical thinking initiative in January, including:

  • Dental Hygiene
  • Emergency Medical Services
  • Funeral Services
  • Health Information Management
  • Hospitality & Tourism Management
  • Human Services
  • Medical Laboratory Technology
  • Natural Science
  • Orthotics & Prosthetics
  • Parks & Leisure Services
  • Physical Therapist Assistant
  • Radiography
  • Respiratory Care
  • Veterinary Technology

There is no charge to attend this event. To register, review the tentative agenda and get directions, visit www.spcollege.edu/criticalthinking/professionals/cti.htm.

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FACC service project supports troops

The St. Petersburg College chapter of the Florida Association of Community Colleges is seeking the names and addresses of the family members of college staff who are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, so that they can receive goodies collected through a statewide project.

As part of its 60th anniversary, FACC is conducting a Convention Service Project through which members will collect items such as candy, correspondence and food to send to service men and women in the Middle East.

Please forward the names and addresses of family service members stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan to Peg Connell no later than Nov. 8 at Connell.peg@spcollege.edu, or by calling her at Ext. 3398.

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Lifelong Learning Courses

Visit SPC's Lifelong Learning site for details on two new classes beginning the first week in October.

Passport to Retirement is a three-week course that helps students prepare for a financially secure retirement, allocate assets, maximize their income, and pinpoint their financial needs for retirement.

All about Stocks, Bonds and Money is a five-week course on economic principles and their impact on the creation of personal wealth; financial institutions and money; valuation principles for stocks, bonds and mutual funds; portfolio creation and the management of risk; securities and security exchanges; and the interpretation and use of financial news and reports.

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Flu shot update

Need flu shot? Go to Find a Flu Shot to locate a flu-shot provider. Finding a convenient location is as simple as putting in a ZIP Code. If you prefer to go through your doctor and you are covered by Aetna through SPC, the shot would be included in the cost of your co-pay.

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Meeting notices

The Development Committee of the Board of Directors for the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art will meet at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 14, in the Interactive Gallery of the museum to discuss general museum business.

The Education & Outreach Committee of the Board of Directors for the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art will meet at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 15, in Café Olympus on the Tarpon Springs Campus to discuss general museum business.

The Finance Committee of the Board of Directors for the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art will meet at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21, in the Museum Director’s office to discuss general museum business.

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good4you

This new feature will highlight services and benefits provided by SPC.

Eye glass reimbursement

Is that computer screen beginning to look a little fuzzy? It may be time for new glasses – and the college has got you covered, even if you aren’t signed up for the college’s health or vision insurance.

You can be reimbursed for the cost of frames, repair of frames, lenses and contact lenses up to $175, based on the length of employment with the college and the date since the last reimbursement.

Employees with fewer than 10 years of service may receive no more than $175 with a minimum of 24 months between dates of reimbursement. Employees with 10 years or more of service may receive no more than $175 with a minimum of 12 months between dates of reimbursement.

To be reimbursed, complete the Vision claim form (pdf) and return it along with the original bills/receipts to:

Custom Benefit Services
P.O. Box 4078
Ocala, FL 34478

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Wellness at SPC

This article and other health information are available on our Wellness blog.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Breast Cancer AwarenessThe beginning of October marks more than just the start of fall. It signifies an issue that affects nearly 200,000 women each year: breast cancer.

The American Cancer Society has estimated that 40,170 women are expected to die from the disease in 2009. There are nearly 2.5 million breast cancer survivors in the United States.

With numbers so high, it’s important to review just what breast cancer does.

Breast cancer is a malignant tumor that grows in one or both of the breasts.  Development of breast cancer is usually in the ducts or lobules, also known as the milk-producing areas of the breast.

Breast cancer can be separated into two categories – invasive and non- invasive.   Invasive cancer or infiltrating cancers penetrate through the normal breast tissue and invades surrounding areas.  Non-invasive cancer is typically confined to the ducts and lobules and does not spread to surrounding tissues.

According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 2,000 cases of non-invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed for men this year.   

Early detection can be the key to successful treatment.  Mammography screening continues to be the most widely used method for early detection.  However, even a mammogram is not always 100 percent accurate.  Women must notice any changes in the breast such as:

  • A lump
  • Abnormal thickening
  • Change in shape
  • Dimpling or puckering of the skin

The only way to fight against this disease is by getting involved.  Completing a self exam, scheduling yearly mammograms, donating money for research and participating in fundraisers are all valuable ways to protect yourself and others.

Make it a priority not only in October, but every month, to fight back.

Follow these links for great resources:

Healthy Happenings

Smoking Cessation

Smoking Cessation is a free, weekly lunch time program offered at each campus on:

  • Mondays – Health Education Center
  • Wednesdays – EpiCenter,
    St. Petersburg/Gibbs
  • Thursdays – Clearwater Campus
  • Fridays – Tarpon Springs Campus

Opportunities also are available at the Seminole, Allstate and SPC Downtown sites. 

Weight Watchers at Work

Weight Watchers will combine the convenience of a workplace meeting location with the benefits of daily motivation from your co-workers. Already, some of your co-workers have been slimming down; the team at the EpiCenter has lost 128 pounds in just three weeks!

There is a cost for the meetings, which are held on:

  • Mondays – EpiCenter
  • Fridays – Tarpon Springs Campus

There will be Weight Watchers at each campus this fall.

Please e-mail Steve Malla, Wellness Coordinator, or call Ext. 3083 for further information about these programs.

Wellness Coordinator
Steven Malla
Human Resources
Epi Services, Room 148
727-341-3083

Explore the SPC Wellness blog for additional wellness articles.

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Sustainability banner

Eco-unfriendly home

Be part of the solution
What can we do to be more sustainable at home?

  • Reuse, reduce and recycle.
  • Plant a tree.  Trees absorb carbon dioxide, which results in cleaner air, and provide shade.
  • Change your light bulbs.  Changing five light bulbs to Compact Fluorescent ones can save you $65 annually because they use 75% less energy and last 10 times longer than incandescent bulbs.
  • Buy Energy Star.  When buying new electronic equipment, make sure to purchase Energy Star products (www.energystar.gov).
  • Heat and cool responsibly.  Make sure your attic is adequately insulated and all air leaks are sealed with foam.
  • Heat and cool effectively. Set your thermostat to 68 degrees F in the winter and 78 degrees F in the summer.  Or, if you don’t need air conditioning, open the windows.  Buy a programmable thermostat or manually turn off air conditioning when no one is home.
  • Calculate your carbon footprint.  Your carbon footprint is an estimate of your annual personal or family greenhouse gas emissions.  Calculate your carbon footprint here: epa.gov/climatechange/emissions/ind_calculator.html
  • Try fair trade, organic and shade grown coffee.  Learn more about Fair Trade Certified products at www.transfairusa.org/.

Sustainability Coordinator
Jason Green
Epi Services, Room 258
727-341-3283

Explore our Sustainability Web site or our Sustainability blog for additional articles.

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Onward & Upward

Mary Lou VanCott, Instructor, SPC College of Nursing, was a recipient of the Great 100 Awards during the Florida Nurses Association’s Centennial Convention Sept. 24 at St. Pete Beach.

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SPC TV

Here is the broadcast schedule for the original cultural programs recorded by SPC for broadcast on the college station. SPC-TV can be seen on Bright House 620, Knology 19 and Verizon 47 in Pinellas County.

NEW – Art of Fashion: 50 Golden Years of Style - WATCH THE VIDEO: (2 mins)

» The Music Center Presents :  Faculty Recital 
Sunday at  3:30 p.m.; Thursday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 11:30 a .m.
For details on other Department of Music events, visit the Department of Music Web site. 

» The Music Center Presents: SPC Summer Chorus
Sunday at 4 p.m.; Tuesday at 8 p.m. and Friday at 8 p.m.

» A Night at the Palladium: La Traviata Opera
Sunday at 11 a.m.; Wednesday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 8 p.m.
For details on other Palladium events, visit the Palladium Web site.

» Frontline: Behind the Lines
Sunday at 6 p.m. and Friday at 9 p.m.
For details on other Palladium events, visit the Palladium Web site.

» The Music Center Presents: Rebecca Penneys
Monday at 9 p.m.
For details on other Department of Music events, visit the Department of Music Web site.

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