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April 22, 2019


Harrison and Krimmer with cake

National award celebrated as part of In-Service Day

President Harrison accepted a ceremonial cake on behalf of the College during the lunch break for In-Service Day on Thursday, April 18. The cake was used to commemorate and celebrate Columbus State’s prestigious Leah Meyer Austin Award which was received in February. Designed by Chef Karen Krimmer (pictured with Dr. Harrison), it was a three-tiered rich vanilla cake with lemon curd custard filling and vanilla buttercream frosting. Pastry Arts students baked and decorated several celebration yellow sheet cakes with whipped creamy vanilla frosting. Those cakes were pre-sliced and served for dessert at the In-Service luncheon.

Some of the hard work and results that led the Achieving the Dream Foundation to choose Columbus State for the Leah Meyer Austin Award was featured in a lunchtime video. You can watch it here on this temorary YouTube link.



Facilities Management transforms gym in record time

room break down

Kudos to the Facilities Management staff. Following the morning session for In-Service Day, the crew scrambled to “flip” the gymnasium in less than one hour from a lecture hall to a lunch hall with food service and seating for hundreds.


In-Service Survey
Note: An email with an In-Service Day survey will be sent to all faculty and staff this week.



Executive Vice President selected as Aspen Presidential Fellow


Rebecca Butler, executive vice president at Columbus State Community College, has been selected by the Aspen Institute’s College Excellence Program. She will join the 2019-2020 class of the Aspen Presidential Fellowship for Community College Excellence. It’s a leadership program aimed at preparing the next generation of community college presidents to transform institutions to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success, both in college and in the labor market.

Butler and the 39 other Aspen Presidential Fellows will embark on a 10-month fellowship beginning in July 2019. Delivered in collaboration with the Stanford Educational Leadership Initiative, the fellows will work with mentors – current and former community college presidents – who have achieved exceptional outcomes for students throughout their careers. Fellows will also learn from national experts about ways to harness data to assess student success outcomes, strategies for internal change leadership, and how to create strong external partnerships with K-12 schools, four-year colleges, and employers.

You can read more about the program here.

The news release with all 40 Fellows is here.



In the news

WBNS-TV (10TV) in Columbus reported last week on a new collaboration between Columbus State and Capital University. You can watch the story here.



Open enrollment
Changes in open enrollment will impact all full-time, benefit-eligible employees.

Part 4 (of 4)

When Will This Take Place?

  • The Open Enrollment process will begin on May 1 with educational sessions
  • Open Enrollment registration will start on May 17
  • Open Enrollment will end on May 31

A new benefits portal (BenefitFocus) will be launched on May 17. The portal will require all full-time faculty and staff to re-enroll and select health benefits. If you do not choose new benefits by May 31, your current coverage will end on June 30. 

What the employee needs to enroll in coverage

  • Full legal name of all dependents
  • Social Security number for all dependents
  • Date of birth for all dependents
  • Additional documents may be needed for dependents

Eligibility verification documents: birth certificates, adoption certificate, placement papers, tax documents (if married more than one year), marriage certificate (if married less than one year), domestic partner affidavit, working or non-working spouse affidavit (if the spouse is on the plan), Evidence of Insurability (EOI) if electing additional supplemental life or dependent supplemental life (if not elected as a newly hired employee).

Looking ahead:For longtime faculty and staff, the Open Enrollment process this year is a BIG change from previous years. And it could mean you’ll end up without benefits if you don’t take action next month. Informational sessions will be scheduled during the month of May to assist you in the process. There will be a comprehensive look at the new Open Enrollment process in the next edition of Update on Thursday, April 25.



Information session this week for current health benefits

This information Session will review the web platform and trouble shoot any technical issues or questions you may have. It will be held Thursday, April 25 at noon in Franklin Hall 310.

Any employee and spouse or domestic partner covered under the UHC plans through Columbus State must reach 8 coins (previously 8 points) under the Health Rewards program to maintain a 20% payroll contribution. The cycle started July 1, 2018 and runs until June 30, 2019. Questions: contact Nichole Bowman-Glover, wellness coordinator at extension 3989.



Seeking faculty participation for New Student Orientation

Organizers for New Student Orientation are excited to have the opportunity to expand their event by involving more faculty in events this summer. Selected faculty will have the opportunity to provide a brief welcome and explain the expectations of the college classroom. They will also be able to provide a “mock classroom” experience for parents and family members of new students. The feedback regarding faculty involvement has been extremely positive so organizers want to include more professors and instructors. If you’re interested in taking part in the critical orientation process, please complete the Faculty Application so they can learn more about you and your interests! Contact Molly Ward if you need more information.



City Council provides funding for exchange program

Dresden students in lab Students from Dresden on the Columbus State campus last year.

Columbus City Council last week approved a request of $15,000 to assist Columbus State’s Sister City exchange program with Dresden, Germany. An additional $15,000 has been pledged by several businesses and not-for-profit organizations. Paul Carringer, associate professor and program coordinator for the exchange, says, “This will help us get to Dresden with ten students this coming September. This is a new model of workforce-based career and technical teaching and learning opportunities with an international Sister City connection. And, it brings a potentially unique funding model where support comes from business, governments, and educational institutions that are non-contingent dollars.”



Abuse and technology workshop this week

Join Victim Advocacy Services as they welcome Caitlin Tully from The Center for Family Safety and Healing. She will be presenting a workshop on Abuse and Technology. Learn how electronic devices and social media can be used to track location and activities. Participants will also gain the skills needed to protect their privacy and take control of their digital footprint.

If you have a smartphone or use social media, this is a workshop that you can’t afford to miss. Bring your lunch, and get ready to learn. It will be held on Wednesday, April 24 at 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. in WD 414. You can register for it here.

For other events see the Victim Advocacy’s Events Page here



theater poster

Theatre Columbus State presents “A Doll’s House”

Theatre Columbus State’s production of “A Doll’s House” by Henrik Ibsen opens this week. The production is a drama with comedic moments. Read more and see the trailer here.







Students and mentors recognized

group photo

Back Row: Keith Kipp, Rishi Bhanot, Kali Ference, Catherine Ritterbusch, Ashley Charles, Adam Borders, William Banks, and Mary Lewis. Middle Row: Jonathon Anthony-Hernandez, Philip Sarsany, Ramon Vidal, Bill Horvath, Katelyn Zag, and Brittany Peterson. Front Row: Regita Fusanti, Juliana Barton, Skye-Yves Williams, Teresa Hannah, and Sarah Martin.

Student graduates of the Career Services Mentorship Program and their mentors attended a lunch on April 12 to recognize their hard work and completion of the program. Students worked with their mentors for an academic year to complete a variety of career readiness activities. All activities were related to gaining career insight in their field of interest, confirming their major, expanding their professional experiences, and goal setting. Students shared their experiences and how the relationship with their Mentors and with the program impacted their career planning and confidence.

Thank you to College members who served as mentors and helped our students grow: Julie Collet, Paula E Gallagher, Jesse Jones, Keith Kipp, Mary M. Lewis, Jennifer McCord, Catherine Ritterbusch, Terrie A Stolte, Jan Van Horn, and Katelyn M. Zag.

If you’re interested in mentoring Columbus State students for the 2019-2020 school year, please read the expectations and then sign up here. If you have questions contact Taylor Slocum, career counselor and the coordinator for the Career Services Mentorship Program.  



Executive VP office hours for students

Rebecca Butler, executive vice president, will be holding occasional office hours for students.  This is an opportunity for them to drop-in to discuss what’s on their mind, ask questions, share student success stories and challenges, or to say hello. No appointment is needed. All open office hours will be held in the executive vice president’s office suite in Franklin Hall room 252. The first open office hours will be tomorrow, April 23 from 2:00 – 4:30 p.m. Additional hours will be held in July, October, and January. They are all listed here on Cougar Connect.



Nursing professor develops course for military veterans

For the past few years, Patty Allen, assistant professor of nursing, has participated in the Ohio Department of Higher Education’s Ohio Values Veterans: Medic to Nursing Project as a nursing department consultant. This project was designed to evaluate and convert military training, experience, and coursework into college credit in nursing programs in the state. 

The potential for course credit and the removal of unnecessary barriers to admission for veterans were of particular interest to project members. Columbus State’s Nursing Department reports that the program’s success has led to advanced standing admission of several military medics into the College RN program this year.   

Read more here on the Ohio Department of Higher Education’s Medic to Nursing Project.



Retirement and estate planning seminar

Have you ever thought: I don’t have enough to even worry about an estate plan? Or retirement is a long way off so I don’t need to worry about that now? You don’t have to be rich and famous to plan ahead and leave transformational gifts to organizations.

Estate planning is also commonly known as legacy planning, family wealth planning, or succession planning. It’s a way to prepare for how you would like your assets managed and distributed. Along with your retirement plan, your estate plan protects you and can also help others. Learn from experts on retirement and estate planning and find the options you have when it comes to charitable giving and tax benefits. Join us for a presentation from seasoned professionals and get answers to basic questions. You may want to consult your own financial advisor as well.

Presenters from Manning & Napier Inc. are Kyle Ryan, vice president and client consultant, and Tom Lesko, senior wealth management consultant.

The retirement and estate planning seminar will be held on Tuesday, April 30 from noon - 1:00 p.m. in the Media Studio in the lower level of the Library. Lunch is provided. Seats are limited so you must RSVP here. Family members of employees are invited.


Human resources masthead

Don’t wait: Quality Team Award nominations being accepted

Get your nominations in for the annual Quality Team Awards. They will be accepted until Friday, April 26. The purpose of the team awards is to recognize groups that have used cross-division teams to improve College processes or values; have implemented innovative teaching and learning programs; and have worked collaboratively to improve student success. Projects must have been completed by March 31, 2019, to be eligible.

Team leaders should go to download and complete the Quality Team Award application. They must also solicit a letter of support from the project’s director, chair, or cabinet member. The rubric used to score applications is also available at the link above.


Mileage reimbursement update

The Mileage and Meals Reimbursement form was recently updated on the intranet. The old form rounds the number of miles, while the new form allows for two decimal places. This is important because the accountant adds the numbers shown to verify the total. If only whole numbers are shown, there is a small percentage of miles traveled that aren’t being reimbursed.


College Knowledge: IT

Did you miss IT’s session on In-Service Day? Join the IT department at College Knowledge for a repeat of the content from “IT Matters: Bridging the Technology Gap.”

Overview: Do you like free software? Fast Wi-Fi? Being well-informed of available technology? Join IT for College Knowledge where IT will address common misconceptions and share helpful tips that can benefit everyone in our Columbus State community. You will walk out with concrete ideas on how to apply your new knowledge to promote student and employee success. The session will be held on Friday, April 26 from 9:00 – 10:30 a.m. in CT 108.

If you’re interested in this, or any of the classes, register by logging in to Cornerstone and under the “Learning” tab go to the “Events Calendar.” Click on the event listed under the date listed above and Select “Request to register.” (See this guide for search and registration tips.)



around the discovery district banner

New season for BalletMet

The listings for the new season for BalletMet is now available.Details are here.

Thurber House

The next Thurber House Evenings with Authors event features Helen Ellis. She’ll talk about her latest collection of humorous essays, Southern Lady Code, where she transforms herself into a “Donna Reed” to save her marriage, inadvertently steals a $795 Burberry trench coat, witnesses a man fake his death, avoids a neck lift, and finds the perfect black tie gown. The event will be held on Tuesday, April 23 at 7:30 p.m. at the Columbus Museum of Art, 480 East Broad St., Columbus. Purchase tickets and get details here



in case you missed it



Be part of the next Campus Resource Fair

Columbus State’s Open House for prospective high school students is coming up. Throughout the day, future students will have an opportunity to hear what Columbus State offers. They will experience a self-selected academic and career pathways break-out session, take a guided walking tour of campus, and much more. 

One key portion of the event is the Campus Resource Fair. It features information about student support departments and academic programs. The Campus Resource Fair will be held on Friday, April 26 from 12:30 – 1:00 p.m. in the Nestor Hall west student lounge.

If you are interested in hosting a resource table featuring your department or program at the Open House, please contact Jessica Bagby, assistant for Future Student Experience, Events, and Programs.



Annual Cougar 5K Challenge


It’s not too late to sign up! You can take part as an independent runner, or be a member on one of five teams: Rebecca Butler’s Cougar Corps, Sean Asbury’s Cougar Proud, Tina Diggs’ Cougar Striders, Terrence Brooks’ Spirited Sprinters, and Curt Laird’s Wellness Warriors. You can see all five teams and the number of members on this link.

The Cougar 5K Challenge will be held Saturday, May 4 at 9:00 a.m. on the Delaware Campus. Sponsored by the Staff Advisory Council, all proceeds support book scholarships for students. Register and get more information here.

Volunteers needed for Cougar 5K Challenge
The annual event is just weeks away, and volunteers are needed to help prior to and on the day of the event, Saturday, May 4. If you’re available before Saturday, or on the day of the race from 8:00 a.m. – noon, contact Sherita Golden at extension 5988.  


Department of College Recreation & Wellness (CRW) offerings

Group classes

H.I.T.T. at noon
Roll and stretch at 12:30 p.m.

Yoga at 5:30 p.m.

Kettlebell express at 11:00 a.m.
Roll and stretch at 11:30 a.m.

Total body conditioning at 11:00 a.m.
Yoga at noon

Group classes are held in Delaware Hall room 158.

Self-Defense Program
This empowering self-defense training for men and women combines fitness training and martial arts. It is taught by experienced instructors on the Columbus Campus. All classes are provided free of charge. 

You can take a few classes, or progress through four levels of training where you will learn valuable techniques to keep yourself and others safe. 

Mondays at 5:00 p.m., Thursdays at 10:00 a.m., and Fridays at noon.

All self-defense classes are held in the Columbus State Police Department Training Room in Delaware Hall room 047

CRW Podcast
The health and wellness podcast, Guidance with Grace, can be heard on SoundCloud. It is updated regularly throughout the year. It is also available on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, and Spotify.

More department information is here. If you have questions, email


DEIS faculty Blackboard training workshops

Blackboard Grade Center Small Group
Wednesday, April 24
9:00-10:00 a.m.
CT 119
Register here:

Blackboard Grade Center Small Group
Tuesday, April 30
1:00-2:00 p.m.
CT 119
Register 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 9 a.m. for inclusion in the Monday edition, and Wednesday at 9 a.m. 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 9 a.m. for inclusion in the Wednesday edition of Campus Life. Campus Life headlines are sent to students via email each Wednesday during the semester.