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President's Newsletter

June 2020 | Volume 1, Issue 10

Virtual grads

College Holds Virtual Graduation

Moreno Valley College held a virtual graduation for its 2020 class. Graduates, family and friends heard from a number of education leaders, including Robin Steinback, Ph.D., president of Moreno Valley College, as well as student speaker Crystal Williams. The graduation featured a personalized slide for each graduate which showcased their degree/certificates, a personal message, and future plans. Nearly 350 students participated in the online ceremony. Graduates have the choice of returning in 2021 for an in-person ceremony. To view the ceremony, click here.

Welcome Day to be Held Virtually

Welcome Day to be Held Virtually

Moreno Valley College's Community Welcome Day will transition to a virtual event this year. The event will showcase the College and its education programs. The community and new students can learn about student clubs, programs and support services, financial aid and assistance on applying for college, and enrolling in classes. There will be student and parent workshops, chance to explore academic and career opportunities, and meet faculty and staff. Workshops and college information will be available in both English and Spanish. Registration will be needed. For more information, click here.

Journalism Program Launches College Newspaper

Journalism Program Launches College Newspaper

The Moreno Valley College journalism program published its inaugural edition of the Moreno Valley College Herald, an online publication covering news of the College, along with features, entertainment and editorial content. The publication is student run by those enrolled in Introduction to Journalism, Intermediate Journalism, News Production, and Photography. The weekly publication will be produced during the fall and spring semesters.

"We hope the site becomes a resource for Moreno Valley College and the broader Moreno Valley community," Edward Rice, Ed.D., assistant professor of Journalism, said in an email announcing the publication.


Cyber Camps Become an International Draw

Although, Moreno Valley College's Cyber Camps have been forced online it hasn't dismissed its draw. The Beginner Cyber Camp attracted 179 students while the Advanced Cyber Camp 2020 sold out with 100 registrants. The camps provide cybersecurity training for beginners and advanced cybersecurity learners and coders. In the Advanced Cyber Camp, students will learn Windows, Linux and network cyber defense strategies for CyberPatriot competition and prepare for future careers in Information Technology and Cybersecurity. The Beginners Cyber Camp is an introductory training week for individuals interested in information technology, computer science and cybersecurity.

Interestingly, the camps have attracted students from across the world. The Advanced Cyber Camp has individuals from Texas, Alabama, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Washington, Arizona, New York, Abidjan (West Africa) and Amsterdam as well as different regions of California. The Beginner Cyber Camp was also an international draw as individuals from Canada and even Amsterdam registered for the camp as well as students from Utah, Colorado, Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, Alabama and Massachusetts.

Both camps are open to students in the seventh to twelfth grade students. The Advanced Cyber Camp requires prior enrollment in the Beginner Cyber Camp or the CyberPatriot competition Both camps are free and are co-hosted by Moreno Valley Unified School District and MVC.

Virtual arts

Pandemic Pushes End-of-the-Year Events Online

As the COVID-19 pandemic has pushed learning online, the use of educational technology has increased. None more so than with the arts. Two disciplines at Moreno Valley College – Art and Music – transitioned end-of-the year in-person events to virtual presentations.

But it wasn't without trial and error.

"Despite feeling unprepared initially, we created new tutorials and projects to allow for expression and to accommodate limited access to space and supplies, incorporating homemade videos, live demonstrations, group Zoom critiques, guest lectures, extensive image collections, and digital software into our course structure," said Amy Balent, professor of Art.

Barry McNaughton, assistant professor of Music, could relate.

"When the quarantine occurred, I think we (Music faculty) felt a bit lost as to how we would proceed," McNaughton said. "We agreed that, at its core, an ensemble course is fundamentally a collaborative workshop. So, the central problem to surmount was to figure out how to preserve this critical aspect of the course in an online format.

"Each of my colleagues brought unique perspectives and talents to the table in an open and free exchange of ideas ranging from methodology and technology to student support. We ultimately concluded the first meeting by recognizing that although this was an unfortunate and challenging situation, we could use it as an opportunity to collaborate in a way which we had never attempted in the past."

The Art faculty turned to "sheer ingenuity," using video puppet shows, wearable cardboard, digital graphics, sculptures, posters, illustrations, drawings, designs and paintings to keep learning flowing. The Music faculty focused on a recording project which would allow for asynchronous collaboration, while not imposing additional financial burden upon students.

To pull off the end-of-the-year events, the Music faculty used a program that Associate Professor Kris Sveen lovingly called Bandlab. The software allowed McNaughton to create audio recording/ editing projects that could be shared online with the different student groups. The program is a scaled down version of Pro-Tools, the industry standard for audio production, McNaughton said.

Virtual arts

"The biggest problem I encountered was that few of the students had ever used a digital audio workstation," he said. "The next few weeks became a crash course in the essentials of audio setup, recording and editing. After the initial technology implementation, students were able to interact with one another, similarly to how they would have had face to face. They discussed goals for the performance, talked about interpretive aspects of the music, critiqued their recordings, and worked together towards a common end. Other than the videos, the project was almost entirely created by the students."

Students were asked to record themselves performing their assigned part. Individual performances were collected and assembled into the final performance.

"I think we ended up with somewhat similar results because of the open channel of communication that we fostered and sustained," McNaughton said.

Similarly, Art students adapted, using alternative spaces, materials and technology.

"Although nothing rivals the tactile experience of a physical gallery, the virtual format proved to be unique, engaging and accessible," Balent said.

The end-of-the-year art show featured over 40 pieces from seven instructors' classes. Pieces included drawing, design, color theory, painting, 3D design, computer art, figure drawing, and watercolor pieces. Whether in person or online, the goal of the exhibit was to showcase students' creativity and dedication. Part-time faculty member Matt Luther built the digital show, using technology he had employed while doing a similar project at Riverside City College.

"The powerful reactions to the virtual show illustrate the passion, determination, versatility and positivity of our students and mirror our commitment to the same high teaching standards and innovative methods we employ in the studio," Balent said. "The unexpected ways in which we find ourselves navigating, demonstrating, displaying, and conversing about art enrich practices and foreshadow exciting possibilities to come."

To view the art show, click here. To listen to the end-of-year music performance, click here.

2020 Census

Be Heard, Be Counted

The US Census Bureau, in coordination with federal, state and local health officials, has restarted field operations in California as of June 8. If you haven't completed your household's census report, you are encouraged to do so. Each decade, the United States holds a population census count. The data collected by the census determines a number of things which can affect California and its residents. Through the census, billions of dollars are distributed by the federal government to local communities, universities, community college districts such as Riverside Community College District, and municipalities. The process is immense as some 330 million people in more than 140 million housing units will need to be accounted for. You can help by ensuring your household participates in the California Census. For more on the census, click here.


Did you know...

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Moreno Valley College

16130 Lasselle St., Moreno Valley, CA 92551
(951) 571-6100


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