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June 15, 2017


Quality Awards celebrate teaching, teamwork

VanHorn getting plaque Darla Van Horn, Title IX Coordinator, goes for a hug with President Harrison after being named Staff Employee of the Year.

The annual Quality Awards ceremony was held Tuesday to name the winners among those nominated for Distinguished Teaching Awards, Quality Improvement Teams, Employees of the Year and Distinguished Full Professor.

Nominated by their students, and observed in the classroom by the selection committee, the four Distinguished Teaching Award winners were Elizabeth Betzel, Professor of Mathematics; Nicole Brandt, Ph.D., Instructor in Psychology; Amy Delorenzo, Assistant Professor in the Interpreter Education Program; and Kelli Nowlin, Instructor in English.

The winners were universally praised for their enthusiasm for their subject, their excellent rapport with their students, and their dedication to student learning and success.

In the Team Awards, Silver Awards were given to the Self-Defense Program Team and the SPARK – Columbus State Scholar Network Team.

The Self-Defense Team’s vision was to design an all-inclusive program that would build self-confidence, instill discipline, and reduce bullying through a martial arts program for students, faculty and staff. The team leader was Jason Apt.

SPARK stands for Supporting foster youth to Prepare, Achieve, Realize, and Keep their goals. The program provides mentoring, engagement activities, academic tracking, recognition events, and holistic support services for students who were formerly foster youth. The team leader was Kimberly Rhyan.

group photo The Delaware Day Team accepts their Gold Team Award, from left, Bryan Butte, Lacy Byrom-McClure, Ellen Neutzling, Dea Boster, Ben Pugno, Mandy Mernedakis, Jennifer Schleppi, Marcia Holleman, Kelly Byrnes, Felecia Smith, Kristine Kinzer, Angie Shear, Dana Knott, Paul Rehg, Pat Fabrisi, Dr. Harrison, and Lisa Petersen.

The Gold Team Award went to the Delaware Day Team, who planned a special event on the Delaware Campus that included student displays, alumni panels, workshops, games, food trucks, crafts and much more—all to present the campus, and what it has to offer, to potential students, current students, and the community. Delaware Day offered students a unique learning opportunity and the ability to assume leadership, while also reaching out to the Delaware Community to enhance the partnerships and extend their knowledge of Columbus State, and the Delaware Campus. The team leader was Ben Pugno.

Fostering student success was the theme for both the Staff Employee of the Year and Part-time Staff Employee of the Year award recipients.

Employee of the Year Darla Van Horn, Title IX Coordinator, has a passion and expertise for working with students, and that passion leads to retention and student success. As the September 2016 Staff Employee of the Month, Van Horn was lauded for the everyday interactions with individual students where her work really stands out to her coworkers.

Barnett with PresidentBeth Barnett, professor in Developmental Education, accepts her Distinguished Full Professor Award from President Harrison.

The Part-Time Employee of the Year is Reference and Instruction Librarian Kristine Kinzer, who was described as having the talent and savvy to provide reference assistance in a multitude of subject areas to students who come to the Delaware Campus Learning Center. Kinzer was nominated by an international student who thanked Kristine for helping her navigate the college and succeed in her studies, despite English being her second language. 

And the final award of the day was to Distinguished Full Professor Beth Barnett, who teaches mathematics in the Developmental Education Department. The Distinguished Full Professor committee unanimously selected Barnett for her commitment to the students she serves in the classroom and to the college-at-large.

“Through her leadership with the MATH 1099 course and the Placement Task Force, Beth has helped Columbus State implement significant change and initiatives aimed at student success,” noted Philip MacLean, committee chair.

“Columbus State is extremely fortunate to have many amazing faculty who excel in the classroom and are truly dedicated in their service to the institution and the profession. Among this population, what makes a professor truly distinguished is the ability and dedication to effect major change on a large scale. Implementing two radically new approaches for math placement and remediation were quite difficult and time consuming, logistically and politically.  Without the leadership from Beth Barnett, there is no doubt that the college would not be anywhere near what it is today!” 


Retiree Harold Brown visits with new memoir

Brown speaking to retirees At yesterday’s retiree luncheon, Dr. Harold Brown receives applause for his presentation on his new book “Keep Your Airspeed Up: The story of a Tuskegee Airman.”

Wednesday’s luncheon for Columbus State retirees had a very special guest when Dr. Harold Brown, former Vice President for Academic Affairs, visited with his new book “Keep Your Airspeed Up: The story of a Tuskegee Airman.”

Brown, 93, retired from then-Columbus Technical Institute in 1986, and has kept up an active schedule running an educational consulting firm, writing, and touring the country as one of the few remaining members of the elite group of African-American U.S. Airforce pilots who made up the famous Tuskegee Airmen.

From 1942, until he was shot down over Germany and taken prisoner in 1945, Brown was a fighter pilot in the Red Tails unit, escorting B-24 bombers flying out of Italy in raids over Germany.

After the war, Brown earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Ohio University, followed by a master’s and doctorate. He joined CTI in 1974 as an instructor, and was made vice president by the “other” Harold, Dr. Harold Nestor, soon afterward.  Together they increased the enrollment of CTI four-fold, and started the college on its path to become a comprehensive community college in 1987.

Dr. Brown’s book will be on sale August 1 on Amazon. He will be visiting the college again for a speech and book signing on Tuesday, August 22 in the Conference Center, so mark your calendars!


Information session on OU Master’s in Higher Ed program

Ohio University will be kicking off a Master’s in Higher Education (MHE) cohort in the upcoming academic year. Program courses are delivered in a hybrid format—both in-person and on-line—with the in-person courses offered at Columbus State Community College. Our graduates have gone on to have strong careers in functional areas including Admissions, Residence Life, Institutional Research, Campus Programming and other areas.

If you are interested in learning more about this unique program, please join us for an information session on Tuesday, June 20 at 4 p.m. in Madison Hall Room 103. For more details on the curriculum, click here. If you have questions about the program, please contact Pete Mather at or 740-593-4454. 


Parking garage maintenance

The parking garage will remain OPEN, but summer maintenance will cause small sections of it to be closed on an ongoing basis through July.


College-wide building inspection

Starting today, teams will be inspecting buildings across campus, including exterior and interior conditions. Disruption inside should be minimal. This college-wide assessment will go on until August, and will help determine future renovation and maintenance.


Open Door Art Studio exhibition

Open Door Art Studio & Gallery’s upcoming exhibition is all about everyone’s favorite topic: food. All You Can Eat! features a range of culinary-themed works, and will be on view July 8 through 28th. The community is warmly invited to attend the Opening Reception for All You Can Eat! on Saturday, July 8 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at 1050 Goodale Boulevard, Grandview Heights. Viewers will have the opportunity to experience works ranging in size and medium. Light hors d’oeuvres and beverages will be served.



Support TRIO at Platform Brewery June 19

Columbus State employees, friends and family are invited to come support TRIO Educational Talent Search and Upward Bound Programs at Platform Brewery on Monday, June 19.

Platform Brewery is located at 408 North 6th Street on campus, and has graciously agreed to donate 20 percent of its proceeds to TRIO on Monday, June 19 from 3:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. In addition to enjoying great brews, food, and company, come on out to take part in trivia night or throw your ticket in for a few raffle items! 



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June Matrix Monitor

In this month’s issue, you can learn about managing worry and other difficult emotions, recognizing verbal abuse, workplace fatigue and more. Read the issue here.



Submit your news to Update

Do you have news or an announcement for the employees of Columbus State? Send your news to Update, the Columbus State newsletter exclusively for employees. Update is published every Monday and Thursday during the semester, and on Mondays during semester breaks. Send your news to by Friday at noon for inclusion in the Monday edition, and Wednesday at noon for the Thursday edition. Update editors reserve the right to edit submissions for clarity, brevity and editorial style.

Submit your news to students in Campus Life

Are you hosting a special event for students, starting a new class next semester, offering a workshop or seminar of interest, or would you like to share a special student success story? Send your news to Campus Life, the weekly online publication for Columbus State students. Send student news to by Tuesday at noon for inclusion in the Wednesday edition of Campus Life. Campus Life headlines are sent to students via email each Wednesday during the semester.