Valley College faculty, TAE and the ASU honored outstanding students at the Spring 2016 Dean’s Reception in Monarch Hall.
By Melinda Henricks, Staff Writer
The semi-annual Dean’s Reception last Wednesday in Monarch Hall was an invitation-only, formal occasion that recognized students for their academic achievement. All 400 available seats were filled, yet many more attended. The event featured decorations, a keepsake brochure and an honors pin was given to the top 500 students that made the Dean’s and President’s Lists concurrently. College officials congratulated and encouraged the continued superior work of these students.
The standing-room-only ceremony, hosted and sponsored by Tau Alpha Epsilon and the Associated Student Union, opened with a speech from Valley College President Dr. Erika Endrijonas. She honored the dedication and fortitude required to become and remain a top-performing student.
“Excellence is a journey and discipline is the vehicle,” Endrijonas said.
Full-time students with at least a 3.5 GPA in 12 or more units at Valley College, or part-time students with at least a 3.5 GPA in 6-11 units who have completed more than 12 cumulative units in residence are selected for the Dean’s List.
Students who have been on the Dean’s List for three consecutive semesters are selected to be on the President’s Honor’s List. In addition, all students with a 3.5 GPA or higher are eligible to be a member of the Phi Theta Kappa, a national honor society for 2-year colleges, and Tau Alpha Epsilon, Valley’s honor society.
In addition, students on the Dean’s List, (approximately 1700 students), and those on the President’s List, (500 students), will be listed on the glass-encased wall next to Monarch Hall.
Deans Dr. Elizabeth Negrete (Student Services) and Dr. Laurie Nalepa (Academic Affairs), as well as Professor Joshua Miller, president of the Academic Senate, congratulated students and spoke to the prominence of the honor. TAE and ASU presidents Wendy Sotelo and Erica Martel announced the ceremony. Florentino Manzano, Vice President of Student Services and many faculty members and staff were also in attendance.
Students were invited to speak during a segment of the ceremony. One student discussed his plight with homelessness and his ability to overcome the odds. Another student revealed his battle with cancer and chemotherapy while attending college. Yet another paid homage to their favorite Valley professors. Each student has their own educational perspective, but they all share a similar goal.
“I dedicate a lot of time to studying,” sophomore and law student Marco Diaz said. To this end, he stated that he utilizes the library and the writing center.
“The writing center and tutoring have been a tremendous help,” Colombian-born sophomore Gayne Aleksanyan said, as she struggles with a language barrier. Her son attended and brought her roses.
The ceremony concluded with the president’s honor students being called to receive a handshake and a pin. Many students had their pictures taken with Endrijonas after the ceremony, as well as other school officials. Refreshments were served to students and their families on the adjacent patio.
Valley has made tutoring and student services a top priority to help students with any educational struggles they face.
“Hours have been added to student services to assist students that have difficulty making it during the week,” Endrijonas said. This was a priority for her as well as “extending hours during the week.”
Students can visit Valley’s tutoring information web site for more information on the Writing Center, the Math Lab and additional resources.