A Student Publication of Lorain County Community College

Students win nine Excellence in Journalism awards

Oscar Rosado Editor-in-Chief Six LCCC students received nine awards from the Press Club of Cleveland’s 41st Annual 2019 All Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards banquet at the House of Blues on June 7. President of the Press Club of Cleveland,…

LCCC awards 2,436 degrees at 2019 commencement

Oscar Rosado Editor-in-Chief “It’s been a long journey, four years in the making,” Lorain resident Omar Vargas said after receiving his Associate of Arts degree through Lorain County Community College’s College Credit Plus (CCP) program at LCCC’s 55th Commencement ceremony…

College sets 10,000 diplomas-degrees goal by 2025

Special to The Collegian (Elyria, OH, April 18, 2019) The Lorain County Community District Board of Trustees adopted the College’s new strategic plan that declares a bold goal of 10,000 individuals earning a degree or certificate by 2025. The plan…

Path to bachelor’s from LCCC to CSU

LCCC and CSU had made an agreement to have students start their college path off at LCCC and graduate with their Bachelor’s degree at CSU through a new program called UP Express CSU initiative. The program is an extension of…

Professor wins fellowship to promote the history of African-American periodicals.

Associate Professor Dr. Jewon Woo
Oscar Rosado | The Collegian


Students win nine Excellence in Journalism awards

Oscar Rosado

Six LCCC students received nine awards from the Press Club of Cleveland’s 41st Annual 2019 All Ohio Excellence in Journalism Awards banquet at the House of Blues on June 7.

President of the Press Club of Cleveland, Amy McGahan, said in an opening speech that “801 entries from all corners of the state were judged by Press Club members from across the nation.” McGahan went on to say that “journalism matters… now more than ever.”

In the category of Student Run Media,  six LCCC students won with four out of seven categories, with LCCC sweeping all 2 year/Trade School awards.

Among the winners of the Best Print Newspaper Story for a 2 year/Trade School was Abigail Doane who took first place with her story “Students bolster local economy.” The judges wrote, “This Story showed some originality by looking at how the college’s students contribute to the local economy by working in various businesses. The quotes are good and help the storytelling quite a bit. Well written and interesting.”

Mark Perez-Krywany won second with his story “Scuffle during game brings on investigation.”

Perez-Krywany who took first place in Best Sports category for his story titled “Scuffle during game brings on investigation.” The judges commented, “Good reporting breaks down the sequence of the scuffle and the results. Reporter did a good job of including multiple sources.”

Kirsten Hill won second place for her story “Focus keeps students in the game.” The judges commented, “Interesting story that not only explains the coach’s five points to consider, but gives examples, which makes it relatable for many readers.”

Perez-Krywany won third for his story, “Controversy in extra innings assists Charger’s sweep.” The judges commented, “This story does a good job of relating the controversy with lots of good quotes.”

Jayne Giese who took first place in the Best Print Feature category for her story “Overcoming abusive relationships.” The judges commented, “This story is especially powerful because abuse victims shared their stories under their own names. Well written and researched, it included valuable information on signs of abuse where to go for help.”

Abigail Doane won second place for her story “Students bolster local economy,” and Jay Sigal took third place for his column ” Suicide evokes emotions, guilt.” The judges commented, “This story contains valuable information on where there is help for anyone contemplating suicide. It could help save a life.”

Finally, Madelyn Hill took first place in the category of Best Online Report for her story “Ballinger highlights new challenges.” The judges wrote, “Good summary reporting of the college president’s presentation.”

The award recipients went on to reflect on their honors. “It’s inspiring and motivational for what I want to be,” said Giese, later adding, “It is really exciting for college students to receive awards like these.”

Sigal commented on how, “Having never attended [a Press Club award ceremony] it was interesting to attend.”

Hill said, “It was an honor to receive something from the Press Club of Cleveland.

Is Accounting an art or a science?

A student’s illustration presented at the class discussion.

ACTG 252 Class
Intermediate Accounting

A bachelor’s degree in accounting can be earned as either a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree. There are several schools of thought that say accounting is a science because an accountant needs skills to record transactions in a consistent manner in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, also know as GAAP. The way accountants gather the data they record is by using systematic and scientific methods of collection. Accountants who are auditors examine and test financial data using formulas, observation and research. With all of these methods, it is easy to see how accounting could be considered a science.

However, some argue that accounting is an art.  Certain transactions that accountants record are based on carefully thought out estimates. These estimates are made by making assumptions using historical data and creatively applying this data to perceived future events. Also, as accounting evolves from rules-based to principles-based accountants will need to be resourceful and inventive as they formulate advice for clients within the ethical guidelines and standards set for the profession.

We often think of the word art literally, by thinking of a museum full of paintings. But an artist can be anyone that is skilled in any occupation. Accounting Professor Claudia Lubaski decided to take the literal form of art and apply it to an assignment in her ACTG 252 class this spring. The class was given an article to read on accounting being a science or an art. Some students said it is a science because accountants do debits/credits and there isn’t much creativity there. There was some discussion that accountants are sometimes thought of in non-creative ways.

Lubaski challenged her students to be creative and create a piece of art that had to do with accounting. She wanted them to see that they were more creative than they thought, wouldn’t be ordinary accountants, but rather GREAT accountants.

Student Justin Barth said, “This project tested my creative abilities more than anything else I’ve done in any of my accounting classes.”

Another student Myesha Arnold said, “Working on this project I never really thought of having accounting having anything to do with art. This project made me think of accounting in a different perspective. I believe after doing this art project and seeing all the different & creative ideas people came up with, I think accounting is more an art than a science.”
Nathaniel Stumph added, “Accounting is unique and is an art because we all have creative ideas of what accounting is.”

The project concluded with an art show on May 2..  Those that attended cast ballots to choose the top three. Lubaski applauded the students, saying, “Although the class remains divided on whether accounting is an art or science, all of the are projects were fantastic!”

LCCC awards 2,436 degrees at 2019 commencement

LCCC President Dr. Marcia Ballinger awards a diploma to a graduate at the 2019 Commencement on May 18.

Oscar Rosado

“It’s been a long journey, four years in the making,” Lorain resident Omar Vargas said after receiving his Associate of Arts degree through Lorain County Community College’s College Credit Plus (CCP) program at LCCC’s 55th Commencement ceremony on May 18.

Like Vargas, the 2019 graduating class of 1,641 earned 2,083 two-year degrees and certificates, and an additional 353 students earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees through the University Partnership.

“With a grand total of 2,436 degrees and credentials being earned, it was the most degrees awarded,” LCCC President Marcia Ballinger, Ph.D., said at the Commencement ceremony held at LCCC’s Ewing Center.

This graduation class marks the first to count toward the college’s new strategic plan called 10,000 Degrees of Impact, which includes the promise of 10,000 individuals earning a degree or certificate by 2025.

Graduates celebrating after the ceremony.

The Lorain County Early College High School graduated its 11thclass with 78 first-generation students primarily from Lorain and Elyria, and all earned an associate degree and their high school diploma at the same time. Meanwhile, 58 high school students graduated with their associate degrees through the College Credit Plus program.

Allan Golston, president of the United States Program for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as well as the keynote speaker of the commencement, recalled a quote Dr. Ballinger had said earlier, “I want to say that again because it bears repeating: Every. Student’s. Dream. Matters.” Golston later said, “That’s what the power of education can do – it can create opportunity, generation after generation – it can make a student’s dream matter.”

Student Senate President Jude Jeon had shared a message, “Success is like a present on Christmas day. Right now the gift wrap represents your obstacles. The paper may be made up of hard times. There may be hardship and suffering, there may be personal and family issues. Any of which could be things that make you not want to unwrap the gift. But please. Unwrap the gift. Push through the hard times. Tear off the wrapping paper and find your goals inside. The bigger your goals are; the more paper you may have to get through. But, please, don’t give up. You can break through the negatives and turn them into positives. And that’s how we can all have a positive impact on our world.”

Vice President for Strategic and Institutional Development Tracy Green, had a few words to say: “What a day, so proud of our graduates. Today was our 55th commencement. There were some special stories and great energy as you see graduates celebrate with family and friends.”

Gissele Lugo, of Lorain, graduated with an Associate of Arts and Spanish. She described her experiences at LCCC to be “long and challenging.” Lugo plans to transfer to Cleveland State University for her Bachelor’s for Spanish as well as a teacher licenser.

Kenny Santiago Marrero, also of Lorain, graduated with an Associate of Arts. He commented, “This is only the beginning of the journey as I’m motivated to go after my bachelor’s.”

Marrero said his experiences here on campus was magical, adding, “Having that relationship with advisers and counselors was truly an incredible feeling. It was like having a family supporting me here at LCCC.”

Astronaut display blasts off in Bass Library

Gonzalez and Substelny building the display. Oscar Rosado | The Collegian

Oscar Rosado

Prepare to be blasted away by the Bass Library’s new astronaut display. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing, and thus is the perfect time to make such a display. Michael Substelny, Assistant Professor of Science and Mathematics Division who also teaches engineering, here on campus, came up with the idea. 

“The display attracts attention to the books regarding real-world space and science fiction,” Substelny said.

Gonzalez putting the finishing touches on the Lost in Space Chariot. Oscar Rosado | The Collegian

With the help of local model maker, J. Carlos Gonzalez, the vision of having an out of this world display was fully realized. 

The display includes such space objects such as a vinyl cutout of astronaut Alan Shepard which was made in the campus’ Fab Lab. Other real world space objects include astronaut John Glen’s Mercury Capsule of Friendship 7, a model of Neil Armstrong on the Moon, a poster of astronaut Buzz Aldrin, the Saturn V Rocket and an assortment of small space crafts, and objects. 

Science fact and fiction

The display not only includes real life space objects, but also fictitious models, coming from such science fiction series as Star Wars, Star Trek, Lost in Space, Battle Star Galactica, Space: 1999 and even Doctor Who. Pieces include, an X-wing, a Snowspeeder and the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars, the TARDIS from Doctor Who, the Lost in Space Chariot, the Cylon Raider and two variations of the Colonial Viper from Battle Star Galactica, the Eagle One from Space: 1999 and the U.S.S Sally Ride from Star Trek. 

The U.S.S Sally Ride, especially is unique in the display as it has interactive sounds. It was made by Thomas Robertson, a local professor of the Science and Mathematics Division who sometimes taught gaming. The U.S.S Sally Ride is a 3D printed model, and took a few weeks/months to construct entirely, sounds and all. There are multiple buttons on it, which Substelny says anyone could, “have countless adventures with it,” as pushing the buttons not only sound excerpts from the show, but also reenactments. 

Most of the models present were made by Gonzalez, who has been building models since at the age of eight. There are models where he built from kits, such as the Lost in Space Chariot and the crafts from Battle Star Galactica. There are also some models where Gonzalez built entirely from scratch such as the X-wing from Star Wars, and the TARDIS from Doctor Who. Gonzalez said it took seven months and $300 to build the X-wing, and a mere three months with the TARDIS.


Gonzalez said the Millennium Falcon and the Space 1999 Eagle were not finished when Substelny asked him if he’d be willing to show the models for the display. “I take my time when building models, but I only had a few weeks to finish not just one, but two. Meeting the deadline was my biggest challenge,” Gonzalez said.

Substelny says he feels privileged to work on the display, and hopes to more in the future.

The astronaut display is planned to stay in the campus library until the end of the school year.

College sets 10,000 diplomas-degrees goal by 2025

Special to The Collegian

(Elyria, OH, April 18, 2019) The Lorain County Community District Board of Trustees adopted the College’s new strategic plan that declares a bold goal of 10,000 individuals earning a degree or certificate by 2025. The plan outlines five focus areas that will enable the College to reach this goal – Students, Success, Future, Work, and Community.

LCCC President Marcia Ballinger, Ph.D., (third left) with students at the event. Submitted photo

“We are in a talent-driven economy.  With 65% of all jobs by the year 2025 requiring education beyond high school, raising educational attainment is critical for individuals and for companies in our community,” said LCCC President Marcia J. Ballinger, Ph.D.  “Higher education and training provide individuals with greater opportunities to access and succeed in jobs with higher wages.  Additionally, employers are clamoring for skilled talent to grow their businesses.  This plan addresses both of these in a big way.”

The College’s strategic planning process officially launched last fall at the District Board of Trustees meeting held at El Centro in Lorain. That meeting kicked off a comprehensive community engagement process designed to determine the best path forward for the College and the community. Over the course of nine months, more than 1,700 individuals participated in 80 sessions and offered critical input regarding the current state of the college and the community and generated ideas as to how to achieve a successful future. 

The College’s planning process culminated with the formation of a Vision Network, comprised of 130 dedicated community and campus leaders, who attended four structured meetings held between February and April and carefully reviewed the input gathered during the previous seven months as well as mega-trends impacting the future.  The result of these sessions was the creation of a shared vision for the community – one of a vibrant future with opportunities for everyone and where Lorain County becomes a destination of choice for individuals, families and businesses. 

LCCC’s strategic plan for 2025, 10,000 Degrees of Impact, is the College’s plan of action to do its part in leading to that vibrant community for all.  In addition to declaring the 10,000 degrees of impact, the new strategic plan offers a roadmap to impact individuals, families, the economy, and the community all anchored in expanding accessibility, affordability, and flexibility of higher education. 

To deliver on the goal, LCCC’s first area of focus is on students – both direct from high school and working age adults. Over 80,000 working age adults (25-64) in Lorain County have only a high school diploma or some college/no credential.  To meet the talent needs of the economy and help adults access and succeed in new in-demand jobs and industries such as information technology, biomedical, advanced manufacturing and the creative economy, the plan calls for developing new short-term and degree programs that are aligned to the changing economy in a way that meets the complex lives of working age adults.  This includes greater accessibility through online offerings, expanding time and place delivery, expanding career and job placement services and more.  Additionally, the College plans to expand the success of its

College Credit Plus program as a way to prepare the next generation and reduce college debt. In

2018, 43% of all high school graduates earned college credit before completing high school, saving families $5.5 million in college costs with guaranteed transfer for courses to LCCC and other Ohio public colleges and universities.  The plan calls for working with K-12 partners to expand this program and help students succeed on clear college and career paths after high school graduation.

 “Achieving these 10,000 Degrees of Impact is critical to the success of our region. Ten thousand degrees is an ambitious goal, and I believe we can help our residents achieve these degrees and credentials by providing the support needed to address common barriers people face when pursuing higher education,” said Ben Fligner, chairman of the LCCC District Board of Trustees. 

The adoption of the strategic plan follows a declaration made by the Lorain County Commissioners earlier this month when they announced April will be forever recognized as “Lorain County Community College Month” in Lorain County as a way to localize the celebration of National Community College month and highlight the important contributions LCCC makes to the community and the region.  Additionally, other communities across Lorain County are also participating in the celebration with proclamations of support from 11 other communities.

Student Service Navigator strives to address concerns

McIntosh-Pharms. Submitted photo

Mackenzie Jonke
JRNM 151

Kionna McIntosh-Pharms is the new Student Services Navigator, an ombudsperson-like position newly created by LCCC administration to address numerous student concerns. College ombudsperson’s traditionally listen to student concerns and clarify, point them to resources, departments or people who can help. In her new position, McIntosh-Pharms addresses and resolves individual student concerns related to admissions, academic advising, student assessment, counseling, registration, financial aid, records, and academic policies. In addition to all of these responsibilities, the Navigator serves in a proactive capacity to resolve student concerns prior to filing a formal complaint. Students approach the Student Services Navigator mostly to resolve academic concerns, but sometimes to address their transportation issues as well, according to McIntosh-Pharms.

The Student Services Navigator’s position, functions like an ombudsperson by providing students with an individual who has the institutional knowledge and experience to direct students where to go when they have questions, but don’t know where to start for answers.

“The offices of the Associate Provost, Provost, and President all take pride in getting students the help they need,” McIntosh-Pharms said. 

McIntosh-Pharms said LCCC is taking as many steps as they can to make the process as easy as possible for students and their parents.     

McIntosh-Pharms has almost 10 years of experience with LCCC in a wide range of roles. She began her career here as a Business Administration Management student holding several Student Senate Office positions, from executive secretary to president. She graduated with her associates degree in Business Administration Management in 2015.

McIntosh-Pharms worked part-time in the Financial Services Department and as the Scholarship Representative for the Foundation Office and Financial Services Department. Her many leadership activities include her role as the current vice president of the Staff Senate here at LCCC .

Time spent as administrative assistant in the Associate Provost Office for Enrollment Management and Student Services provided her with additional knowledge and experience with student issues and concerns. Prior to accepting her new position as Student Services Navigator, McIntosh-Pharms was an executive assistant in the Provost Office. 

All of this student and staff-based experience in various LCCC departments uniquely qualifies her to help others. 

Students can contact McIntosh-Pharms at (440)366-7690 (office) or (440)610-9802 (cell) or at kmcintosh@lorainccc.edu. 

Faculty shares craftsmanship of whisky flavor at seminar

Dr. Regan Silvestri. Submitted photo

Gregory Visnyai
Journalism 151

The science behind the flavor of whiskey was the topic that Dr. Regan Silvestri, Ph.D., professor of chemistry at LCCC, addressed at a seminar at the Zealand Institute of Business and Technology in Denmark, which attracted both college students and members of the community.

The trip was made possible through the Erasmus+ program. Dr. Silvestri spoke at two different campuses at the Zealand Institute of Business and Technology, an international partner of LCCC. He spoke at the Roskilde campus on March 27, and on March 28, he spoke at the Slagelse campus.

“The real underlying purpose of my trip is that we are setting up student exchange programs with them,” said Dr. Silvestri. Students will be able to attend the Zealand Institute of Business and Technology for one semester, fully funded by the Erasmus+ grant, an academic program provided by the European Union. Likewise, students from the Zealand Institute of Business and Technology will be able to spend a semester at LCCC.

Another reason Dr. Silvestri traveled to Denmark was to figure out what time was best for LCCC students to go there. The Zealand Institute curriculum follows a 2 1/2 year, five semester schedule, and with that in mind, he calculated the best time for LCCC students to transfer there would be at the start of the third semester.

While the curricula at both schools are similar, the Zealand Institute’s curriculum is more practical than LCCC’s. While LCCC’s associates program is two years long, the Zealand Institute’s associates program for chemistry lasts 2 1/2 years, comprised of 1 1/2 years of class work (mainly lab work) and a one year internship.

“Right now, students are like, okay, the exchange is available to me. When is the best time to do that? How do I do that? What credits do I get? What classes do I take? What applies to my degree?” said Dr. Silvestri. He plans to develop a package containing the answers to all of these questions, making it easier for students to engage in the program.

During the first week of May, Sabrina Lykkeyaard, director of international initiatives at the Zealand Institute of Business and Technology, will visit LCCC to help establish the exchange program. It will be determined at that time which majors and degrees will be included in the program.

LCCC and the Zealand Institute currently share a memorandum of understanding. This memorandum provides a framework for students to study abroad and have the classes count toward their degree. But after the details of the exchange program are addressed at the May meeting, the process to put the program into effect should move efficiently. The program will permit even more LCCC and Zealand Institute students to study abroad.

“I hope more faculty take advantage of opportunities to travel abroad,” said Dr. Karin Hooks, Ph.D., the director of international initiatives at LCCC. When faculty members travel to other institutions, it helps build relationships and increases global awareness. A portion of LCCC’s classes have an international component integrated into them, and when any of the faculty of those classes travels, it will give them a deeper cultural experience that they can impart to their students. “It’s a means of building relationships with faculty abroad, and then enhance our learning by sharing our knowledge,” said Dr. Hooks.

Chinese professor sees benefits of teaching at an American college

Professor Zou. Submitted photo

Madelyn Hill
Staff Writer

Dan Zou is a professor here at Lorain County Community College teaching online Chinese language and culture to students. Professor Zou is here on an exchange program with Chang Sha University in Hunan Province of China. This exchange program is more than just a teaching job to Zou. This agreement between Lorain County Community College and Chang Sha University started in June of 2004. Zou states, “It is a great opportunity to be in the exchange program; I get to join clubs, make friends and understand the American culture which makes it worthwhile.” She then adds, “It also helps people to  understand cross-cultural appreciation.” Teaching in America is different than teaching in China.

Zou reports that compared to teaching in China, “There are a lot of benefits here at LCCC.” Zou adds, “Canvas gives a clear outline for both teachers and students, it helps give more opportunity for the students’ learning.”

Zou is very grateful to the many people who helped her transition here in America. She is  currently living with a retired LCCC employee. Zou describes her daily routine. She says, “I walk every day to LCCC which takes about 20 minutes; the land lady drives me when the weather is bad and she makes me feel like I am with my family.” During the holidays, Zou likes to travel. She visits many places in the United States which she states is the “most exciting and most unforgettable part.” Her travels include Niagara Falls, NY, Washington DC, Death Valley, CA and many more.

Zou also wants to show her gratitude to her co-workers. She says, “They gave up free time and weekends to welcome the Chinese delegation.” While the Chinese delegation were here, they were shown how to set up classes and how to be more hands-on with the students. Zou has a hope for this U.S.- China partnership. She says, “I hope that this partnership will continue at Lorain County Community College, to help students learn Chinese and the culture and to also build a friendship between China and America,” says Zou. When Zou returns to China, at the end of the year, she plans to continue teaching as a college professor and use what she learned here and apply it in the classroom.  

AmeriCorps do more than just community work

From left to right: Taiwan Jackson, Ericka Johns, and Jarrod Gray. Quentin Pardon | The Collegian

Quentin Pardon
Staff Writer

AmeriCorps College Completion (ACC) coaches are college graduates who are committed to helping other students attain their educational goals and are also dedicated to community service. Coaches provide intensive support to students in reaching academic milestones that are proven to increase their childhood of success. Coaches also engage students in activities and events that create awareness and address community needs. Coaches who undergo ample training are provided with valuable professional development, networking, guidance and support with career and “Life After the Corps” goals. 

AmeriCorps workers, Jarrod Gray and Ericka Johns, helped students here all school year long. “We’re the go to’s when people don’t know where else to go, either it involves with them struggling financially, lack of food, childcare, can’t afford books or not having the motivation to do the work” said Gray.  Jarrod worked at colleges and universities before but came back to his hometown due to family issues but found an opportunity to work with AmeriCorps. After everything is solved, he plans on moving and continuing his career working with the education system. The most recent major objective they had completed was earlier this year. “The MLK food packing event we held this year, we served almost 900-1,000 meals and had around 80-90 volunteers at the College Center.” 

Obstacles to overcome

With an occupation with so many tasks, there are obstacles to overcome. “Meeting with over one hundred students a semester is so our biggest challenge. Meeting all the students is difficult because some classes require to have two to three meetings with students and depending on their schedule it may be hard for students to come in and meet those requirements but we always seem to make it work” replied by Ericka. Ericka Johns graduated from the Ohio State University with bachelors. She decided to take a break from college but got advice from her old supervisor to take the role with AmeriCorps. She plans on returning back to college to earn her degree in Industrial-Organizational Psychology at Cleveland State University. “We only get to work with them for over a course of a year. Biggest part of the job is to create a connection with the students and that is where we get the most of the feedback. They feel comfortable enough to come to us in time of need and we can talk out their problems and find a solution” she continued.

More than just helping

AmeriCorps does more than just help the students and the community that surrounds them. “AmeriCorps care so much for us. They are always talking about the future with us to make sure we are successful in our next steps ” said Ericka. “They are a great connection for more opportunities after your term here” Jarrod adds. If interested in working with AmeriCorps, here is the criteria. You are required to have an Associate Degree. Skillset wise you must possess problem solving, leadership, effective communication and more. To find out more information about applying and the benefits, please go to these websites to become an AmeriCorps worker. For more information: https://my.americorps.gov/mp/recruit/regristration.