Convocation 2010

Whole College Learning

Whole College Learning - Convocation 2010 Our theme today of “Whole College Learning” represents the role that we all play as individuals in an educational organization. It also represents how we work together with and among each other. We learn from each other and we discover things together. Our most important assignment is that every single person be focused on students, on learning, and on our Mission.

Education, Organization, and Life-force
Based on the theme of Whole College Learning I will be speaking about “Education, Organization, and Life-Force.”

I want to focus for a few minutes on the youngest students we educate here at DVC, in the children’s center.

We are working with future builders, artists, scientists, mathematicians, growers, and musicians.

Education is knowledge…knowledge is power.
Who is DVC educating …who are we serving… and is anything changing about the students we serve? We could look at all kinds of statistics such as age, goals, numbers of units being taken etc. But for purposes of this presentation, we are only going to look at high school enrollments, international student enrollments, and our transfer rankings.

Students enrolled at DVC are mostly local residents who live within a 50-mile radius of the campuses in Pleasant Hill and San Ramon. The college service area includes the central section of Contra Costa County (shown here as north and south) where two thirds of the students attending DVC live.

DVC enrollment by location from fall 2005 to fall 2009 

DVC enrollment by location from fall 2005 to fall 2009

The remaining one-third lives in other parts of the county, neighboring counties and other locations. The percentage of students residing in the college service area declined between 1997 and 2004, but since fall 2005 the percentage has increased as more students stay closer to the college.

Percentage of students residing in the college service area

We are a neighborhood college; family members have come, sent other family members here, they have gone on to transfer, get jobs, and have very positive memories of DVC. I know this, because people approach me all the time telling me about their relationship with DVC.

So, a question is … as a neighborhood college how many high school graduates do we have enrolled? Let’s start by looking at the number of high school graduates in Central County over the past five years.

Graduates from Central County High Schools

As you can see, the number has fluctuated from 5,696 in 2005 up to a high in 2008 of 6,337 in 2008. We have been told that 2010 was a big year for high school graduates, but those numbers are not yet available.

So with this many students graduating from high school how many come to DVC?

Annual Unduplicated High School Graduates from Central County Enrolled at DVC

We have had fewer than 2,000 high school graduates per year at DVC from our primary service area in Central County. The percentage of high school graduates enrolled at DVC has declined from 32% in 2005-06 down to 23% in 2008-09 and starting up again in 2009-10 to nearly 27%. This is an important statistic because it gives us an audience to target for enrollment … in order to keep our base FTES numbers.

High School graduates are program and certificate takers…they are the “bread and butter” of our institution and it is especially true with the proposals coming from the legislature.

Percent of HS Graduates Enrolled at DVC

We have consistently grown in the number of international students we serve … from 735 in fall 2005 to over 1100 in fall 2010. These students represent 54 countries and make up about 5% of our enrollment; however, they represent 10% of our FTES, which is the current allocation base for revenue.

Enrollment of International Students at DVC

DVC is proud of being a transfer institution

DVC ranks number 3 in total transfers to UC for the latest year 2008-09. In 2007-08 we were number 2… DeAnza and DVC are very competitive between being #2 or #3. We do not yet have numbers for 2009-10.

Ranking of Top Ten Community Colleges by Total Transfers to UC

DVC ranks number 6 in total transfers to CSU for 2008-09. For the 2007-08 year DVC ranked 5th ahead of DeAnza, again we do not yet have numbers for 2009-10.

Ranking of Top Ten Community Colleges by Total Transfers to CSU

DVC ranked 5 in the top ten community colleges transferring to both UC and CSU for 2008-09. In 2007-08 our ranking was 3, and we don’t have numbers yet for 2009-10. If we had a hundred additional students transferring that would change all of these rankings. It is very competitive and changes from year to year.

Ranking of Top Ten Community Colleges by Transfer to Both UC and CSU

The last piece of data on transfer comes from our international students. As our international enrollment has grown, so has the number of international students transferring. From fall 2005 to fall 2010 the percentage of international students who transferred grew from 23.13% to 30.46% (I want to thank Mohamed Eisa our Dean of Planning and Research …for this information, which is on the web page under FACT Book and is also available on the name Research Website.)

Enrollment and Transfer of Internation Students

In terms of education and knowledge, we could also ask ourselves the questions of how many of our students are veterans (preliminary figures show we serve about 150 per semester), how many are taking ESL or Basic Skills classes, what are the goals of our students, what are the ages… this information should inform our Enrollment Management Committee and help prepare the College for any changes that need to be made as a result of the changing population of students we serve.

Depending upon what the state does with the budget, we will need to continue our dialogue on: How do we serve our students based upon our economic realities?

Students on BFL balcony

Ted Wieden and I just walked everyone through the organizational changes that our accreditation work has brought to DVC. We clearly have a structure that ties our program reviews to our strategic initiatives and drives our budgets. I’m not going to go over that again. I will encourage the College to continue that work through implementation.

However, I would like to acknowledge the leadership of the Classified Senate. The first year I came, I worked with Sonja Nilsen and Ann Patton, for the past two years I have worked with Jocelyn Iannucci and Michael Gong, and this year Ann Patton and Colleen Lento will continue. Under the previous leadership we have seen a dramatic increase in the participation of the Classified Senate in numerous areas, and the College has benefited from it.

I would also like to note the tremendous work that Laurie Lema and the Faculty Senate has done over the past three years. Laurie and I became Presidents at DVC together in 2007. We have worked extremely hard to build a relationship that benefits our students, our College, and the organizational functions of our institution. This includes building a relationship with classified staff and ASDVC, and is evidenced by the invitation for the three senates to meet together.

Training in the use of a strengths-based core value adaptive model provided a wonderful foundation for the accreditation work that we have done and are continuing to do. (The Faculty Senate’s decisions yesterday on how to focus on our strategic directions were done, not because it is required by accreditation, but because it is the quality and focal point of what needs to be done for our students.)

Workshop participant

We have a College committee structure that clearly identifies the four governance committees and the 12 operational committees. The functions, responsibilities, and flow of work is clearly spelled out in the committee handbook based upon the work done in the Show Cause report, which was agreed to in the governance process.

Budget Committee at work

Here we see the Budget Committee at work. They are responsible for developing an annual plan and for educating the college community. As we said earlier in the all-college survey of our committees, 95% of the respondents on our college survey were aware of the Budget Committee and 86% of the respondents felt welcomed. I want to acknowledge the work that Chris Leivas and Ray Goralka did during a very difficult budget year. Also I want to thank Sue Handy and Keith Mikolavich for their work with the Integration Council, and Bill Oye and Dennis Franco for their work on the College Governance Council.

We could all talk about the benefits of an education and how knowledge affects one’s life. We could all talk about organizations and the many structures and functional approaches there are in an organization. This convocation however will be my last “official” speech in a career expanding close to 39 years in different aspects of education. And I wanted to talk briefly about my personal Life-force and the legacy I am leaving you.

I am a first generation College graduate as are some of you. My father completed 3rd grade and my Mom graduated from the 8th grade. I am driven by and have a very passionate belief in the California Community Colleges, specifically Diablo Valley College. DVC is the manifestation of social justice and is one of the keys to making the world a better place to live. We produce hope by providing opportunities for people to add value to their lives.

I believe that in a global world, given the number of countries represented at DVC; the broad range of students we serve; our reputation as a transfer institution; as a place to receive career and technical education, foundation courses and ESL; and a philosophical assumption that everyone has the opportunity to succeed to the best of their ability; DVC makes the world a better place to live and we are therefore teaching people how to live together.

Anyone … regardless of their educational or economic background can seek an education at our institution and they will receive value added to their lives.

What legacy am I leaving?

1. An organization where the College is working together across silos
I was trying to decide how to visualize this and I decided to select some slides of large groups together.

Workshop participants

All the work we did with strength based core values from the initial “Discovering and Building on our Strengths” on August 3, 2007 (an initial session I held with President’s Cabinet – for us to determine how best we could work with each other as I brought basically a new management team together). This was later replicated with the then entire College management group in an exercise designed to help people work together.

Leadership Training Conference

August 4-7, 2008 we held a Leadership Training Conference for faculty, classified staff, administrators, and students. Sixty two participants came together and worked with Systems Thinking using a strengths-based approach. From that training, individuals did some follow-up work in their different areas, which they talked about in October 2008. One area was the Counseling Service Area – “Strength-based Core Values and Program Review Recommendations” led by Kate Wothe.

All college activity: “Wisdom of the Past, Visions of the Future”

On January 13, 2009 we held an all college activity: “Wisdom of the Past, Visions of the Future” with 164 faculty, administrators, and classified staff, in attendance. This was spearheaded by a group of 8-12 people from the August training with Glenn Appell and Cheryl Wilcox leading this exercise.

Then came the famous Feb 3 accreditation letter, which placed us on “Show Cause”.

All of the previous meeting together, dialoguing, discovering stories about ourselves and each other, and identifying the strengths we shared, was the foundation for us as we began the hard work on accreditation together.


And that is what we did in our accreditation committees composed of faculty, classified staff, administrators, and students. And this contributed especially in our Friday afternoon shared dialogue sessions. All of this work allowed for the final writing of the Show Cause Report, the blue print of our College organization.

Our Flex Day activity “Back to the Future: Part II” on January 20, 2010 with 144 attendees comprised of faculty, administrators, and classified professionals continued to build on this legacy.

Another demonstration of working across silos has been the work done in the Marketing and Communications unit. They have designed a logo that demonstrates the pride we have in DVC with a consistent look and feel.

Marketing and Communications

Our printed materials demonstrate this… as well as two of my personal favorites, the newsmaker stories and stories of student success. We have also been able to work with the newspapers and Matt Krupnick who, when I first came, was writing very negative stories about DVC concerning the Unauthorized Grade Scandal. I want to thank Chris Knox for working with me on turning this around. I also want to acknowledge Judy Klein Flynn and Sharrie Bettencourt for pulling together the slides and video of our students for today’s presentation.

2. A culture shift with inclusion as a foundation.
I believe that we have a cultural shift from paranoia to one of trust. This is represented by the Classified Senate President, Jocelyn Iannucci working with me on classified awards …

Judy Walters, Jennifer Curtis, and Jocelyn Iannucci

…as well as the Faculty Senate President Laurie Lema working with me on numerous topics.

Judy Walters and Laurie Lema

Inclusion is further demonstrated in the committee structure we have put together with co-chairs and committee membership based in functional expertise while also honoring constituent membership.

3. Pride in a place of hope
We have demonstrated pride in a place of hope through the monument sign of our college.

Diablo Valley College sign

This is a really permanent sign and is located on four areas of our campus so that when people are looking for Diablo Valley College they are not confused by the parking lot and shopping center across the street.

We know who we are, where we are located, and we are proud of that knowledge. We have college grounds that are welcoming and that demonstrate people care about DVC.

Mathematics building

We provide an atmosphere that is pleasant, conducive to learning, and with all our green grounds and trees, facilitates a calm pleasant experience.

Advanced Technology Building

The cleanliness of our buildings and our grounds is a contribution to the support of the instructional process.

Performing Arts Faculty Building

This is an outward manifestation of how we treat ourselves and each other.

Community Conference Room and Humanities Building

If we care about something we take care of it.


We have changed not only our organization, but also are changing the physical heart of our campus. The Commons Project is scheduled to begin in February or March of 2011.

The Commons Project

I believe that this is a symbol … the outward manifestation of our organizational changes. This beautiful project honors our commitment to sustainability by its design to meet LEED gold standards. The commons project brings together many aspects at the center of our campus through a very collaborative process that puts student services, food services, and the Culinary Arts Program into two buildings connected to the rest of the campus by a “main street.” This project will put many faces onto a common area with a wonderful new staircase and definitely designated entry to the campus.

Faculty and classes demonstrate the quality of education, rigor of our courses, and intellectual capacity of our faculty.

Pleasant Hill campus classroom

And this demonstrates to our community what we do so very well.

What will I miss the most?
I will miss the conversations, discussions, committee meetings, sometimes with people agreeing and sometimes not, but with people always doing their very best to work things out together. I will miss the invitations that people sent to me to visit a class, or share some food, and the drop bys who wanted to share brief stories with me. I will miss working with all of you, trying to help bring people together … and, I will miss Jeanie.

Let’s celebrate that DVC is a better place for you and me.

Believe, Dream, Possibility, Hope. It’s learning what to do with what you learn.

I am very proud to have been a part of DVC and honored to have served at this time in the College’s history.

We opened this convocation with a look at the youngest students that DVC serves; we will close with a look at the 2010 Graduation.

Thank you all for coming and have a truly great year.

Judy E. Walters, Ph.D.
All College Convocation Day
August 12, 2010

View Whole College Learning video

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