NVC Touchstone Awards

La reVistaLearning: Dulce Cruz, Adjunct Faculty, Geology

Dulce Cruz is an adjunct faculty member temporarily filling in full-time. Ms. Cruz’s temporary position has not stopped her from giving her all and bringing youthful energy to the Geology program at NVC. Dulce worked with the geology faculty to improve the courses that she teaches, and she developed the new Earth Science Lab for the department.

Creativity: Dr. Denise Tolan, Faculty English Dept. Coordinator

Denise Tolan demonstrates creativity each day as a faculty member, adjunct coordinator, and writer. Denise volunteered to host the Works in Progress nights on multiple dates and created a safe space for students to share their creative work. She continues with this amazing initiative remotely even during the time of COVID to inspire and encourage students to continue to create.   As Adjunct coordinator for the English department, Denise continuously finds creative ways to include and engage our adjuncts. She created and maintains a Canvas resource page and has added numerous resources to the shell so faculty would always have what they need at their fingertips in addition to hosting monthly adjunct meetings and a number of faculty development sessions for adjunct faculty to ensure that they feel connected and engaged while keeping them informed on department news and events. Finally, as a writer Denise embodies the creativity touchstone with her multiple publications, fiction, and non-fiction stories. 

Synergy: Dr. Thomas Pressly, Math & Engineering Professor

Although he has been off contract since the end of the Spring semester in mid-May, Dr. Pressly works diligently to support & develop a new program called TATE “Transfer Academy for Tomorrow’s Engineers”. Dr. Pressly contributes an enormous amount of time and energy to actively design the application process, plan info sessions for potential incoming students, and promote the program by collaborating with our admission services, Marketing & Strategic Communications, and UTSA. His uplifting attitude and going above and beyond manner have set a great example for others to follow. 

Caring: Migdalia Garcia, Academic Program Specialist

Migdalia Garcia is a constant supporter and co-collaborator in the development of the Student Advocacy and Resource Center at NVC. She demonstrates dedication to the mission and remains a principal figure in the program development and service delivery to former foster youth attending NVC. We chose Caring for Mig because she is a systems thinker and uses her tenure at the college as well as her experience with Peace and Conflict to support this emerging service program.  She is a colleague that gladly celebrates every victory but is also along for the ride as challenges come.  She is a consummate problem solver and is always at the ready to find solutions and works to leverage both her knowledge and relationships. She is student-centered which is evident through her constant willingness and passion to take on additional duties such as paying rent and utilities for students as part of the emergency assistance program of the Student Advocacy and Resource Center.

Diversity: Melissa Monroe-Young, Manager, NVC Marketing & Strategic Communications

Her “REFLECTION ON BLACK LIVES MATTERarticle and impeccable organization of the  NEWLY FORMED NVC BLACK LIVES MATTER ASSOCIATION,” and encouraging all to care and championing action!

Learning: Tyrell Schwab, Coordinator of College Technology

There is certainly no technical problem too large or too small for Tyrell.  His strife to learn, dissect, resolve, and adapt to technical systems that are constantly changing makes Tyrell a true student/Instructor of technology.

Creativity: Abigail Garcia, Certified Enrollment Coach

I have had the pleasure of working with Ms. Garcia and seeing the development of a creative staff member. Her ability to look at processes and enhance them has been a huge benefit to the onboarding team. Her creativity stems from her experiences and the students with whom she helps. Abigail believes in students first and strives to be creative and innovative in order to drive students in and give them the best experiences. She is a great asset and wonderful person; she is a strong candidate for this touchstone. 

Joy: Veronica Gonzalez, Administrative Service Specialist

Veronica is the first one everyday to extend a Good Morning and a smile (emoji smile these days).  She looks for opportunities to see how you are doing, and ways that she can help make it a better day. 

Integrity: Baseema (Syeda) Farooq, Senior Specialist Student Success Records

Baseema is an excellent example of the integrity touchstone.  She ensures that each student is taken care of in a timely manner and takes the time to review all the details of every student.  Her job requires high ethical standards, and she emulates the touchstone integrity in all she does.  Reviewing student records is not a job that anyone can do, but she does so with ethics, grace and great customer service.  

Community: Garvin Dansby, Coordinator College Risk Management

Garvin has worked tirelessly since February to prepare NVC for the impact of COVID-19, and he has continued to develop innovative ways to protect our NVC community. Garvin is one of the keys to holding our community together and enabling the community to come back together. 

Openness: Valerie Acosta, Student Success

Valerie Acosta Vasquez is the embodiment of the term openness. Her kindness and concern is displayed daily as she works to assist our prospective and returning students. The thought that is put into her daily tasks is with the students’ best interest in mind. The conversations with students are impactful as she strives to share all information to students and ensure that they leave with the best experience possible. She has led many tasks for our department and does a tremendous job working with her colleagues. Her passion for the job is why she takes so much pride in her work and with assisting others. She is a great candidate for this touchstone. 

Synergy: Steven Rocha, Student Success Coordinator

As the lead for New Student Orientation, Steven has worked across the college departments to ensure the success of NSO.  He has been able to bring together staff, faculty, facilities, etc. to provide a quality experience to entering Wildcats.  He understands that in order to have a successful program, planning and communication across departments is critical to the success of the event.  This is even more critical during these times.  He was able to shift from face-to-face NSO’s to fully online NSO’s.   

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