A Student Publication of Lorain County Community College

LCCC named among top 150 community colleges

Oscar Rosado Editor-in-Chief LCCC President Marcia Ballinger, Ph.D. is pleased with the college being named among the top 150 community colleges in the country by the Aspen Institute.  As one of the 150 top community colleges, LCCC is eligible to…

Campus partners with Amazon for new business courses next semester

Oscar Rosado Editor-in-Chief  “We’re really excited to be bringing the Amazon Small Business Academy to local entrepreneurs and businesses,” said LCCC President Marcia Ballinger. “This is a perfect fit with our Vision 2025 strategic plan to help improve the economic…

Coping with anxiety issues in classrooms

Oscar Rosado Editor-in-Chief “Anxiety makes it really hard when teachers ask questions in class,” said fine arts major Angelina Rubensaal who has been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. “I am in constant fear if I get a question wrong. What…

Campus Security chief wins a state award

Jayne Giese Staff Writer  It came as a surprise to Kenneth Collins, director of Campus Security at Lorain County Community College, when he heard he was nominated for Administrator of the year.  “I feel very honored that I was nominated,…

Men’s cross-country wins championship, five men and women named All-Region

Special to the Collegian LCCC’s men’s cross-country team brought home the Division III Region XII Championship trophy this past Saturday, defeating Columbus State CC for the title.  All-Region selections Charlie Yonts (Oberlin/Firelands) and Henry Haas (Wellington) finished second and third,…

Arc Center helps fight mental health stigma

Quentin Pardon Assistant Editor “We are in a day and age where we are combatting a mental health stigma and we are losing,” said Student Senate President Udell Holmes. Holmes and his team are trying to raise awareness around the…

Campana building upgrades for new opportunities

Quentin Pardon Assistant Editor Lorain County Community College had revealed the finishing additions and renaming of the Dolore Jeneé Campana Center for Ideation and Invention with an open house and a presentation by Luke Williams, author of “Disrupt: Think the…

LCCC named among top 150 community colleges

Oscar Rosado

LCCC President Marcia Ballinger, Ph.D. is pleased with the college being named among the top 150 community colleges in the country by the Aspen Institute.  As one of the 150 top community colleges, LCCC is eligible to compete for the $1 million Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, the nation’s signature recognition of high achievement and performance among America’s community colleges.

“This designation by the prestigious Aspen Institute is quite an honor, and a true indicator of LCCC’s continued commitment and progress toward student success,” Dr. Ballinger said.

LCCC one of three in OH

Based on strong performance and continued improvements in student outcomes — including graduation rates, employment rates, earnings, and equity — 15 percent of community colleges nationwide have been invited to apply for the Aspen Prize – and LCCC is just one of three Ohio community colleges to be among those contenders. The other two Ohio colleges named are Cuyahoga County Community College and Ohio State University’s Newark Campus.

“LCCC has made student success, that means success in academics and in careers, a top priority.  We have redesigned programs and systems to best meet the needs of our students today, while building a highly skilled workforce to meet the needs of employers and drive our economy,” Dr. Ballinger said.

Words from Vice President  

Vice President for Strategic and Institutional Development Tracy Green expressed a similar reaction.

“So much of what we do is driven by the needs of our students today and what they are going to need to be successful in the economy of the future and really looking at our local needs. What has transpired that’s made us one of the best in the country, but it’s really driven by what do our students need and it’s constantly looking at how can we do better for our students to help them complete, to get to the finish line with less time and less cost,” said Green. 

Green said they were not aware where among the top 150 the institution is at, but said Purposely institutions are not told where they are ranked among the 150, because it can be discouraging.

The Aspen Institute looks at what colleges continuously improve where they’re at. The next step in the process is that LCCC has to apply and submit an application as one of the 150, and the Aspen Institute will narrow the 150 down to the top 10.

“This has qualified us to apply for the Aspen prize, so they will narrow this done by way of process. It is completely done by their own data using the info that gets reported. The next step is to apply for the Aspen prize,” said Green.

According to Green, there are about a little over 1,250 community colleges in the country alone. 

The next step

The 150 community colleges named today are eligible to compete for the 2021 Aspen Prize and were selected from a pool of nearly 1,000 public two-year colleges nationwide using publicly available data on student outcomes. Located in 39 states in urban, rural, and suburban areas, serving as few as 500 students and as many as 75,000 students, these colleges represent the diversity and depth of the community college sector according to a press release.

Data shows that over the last two years, student retention, graduation rates, and degree completion have improved at the top tier of 150 Aspen Prize-eligible colleges. Locally, Lorain County Community College has seen a 93 percent increase in the number of degrees and certificates awarded since 2011.

“We’re pleased to see evidence that these institutions are improving, that more are delivering on their promise. We’re also pleased to play a role in honoring outstanding community colleges and sharing what works to ensure great outcomes for students—through graduation and beyond,” said Executive director of the Aspen Institute College Excellence Program Josh Wyner.

“We’re very proud of being named one of the top 150. It is such an honor, and we will celebrate that recognition,” said Green. She then said, “More importantly, we will use it to help inspire what more we need to do. We are really focused on what our strategic plan is, what is our vision, which is that 10,000 degrees of impact and really helping our students, get to where they need to be. Everything we do is driven by the needs of our students and by the needs of the community.”

LCCC won’t be notified until next Spring around late May, when the finalists will be announced. Regardless, Green said there is value even in the application process, and said, “It makes you really look at what are the things we’ve been doing really well and how is that connected to that plan and what are the things we will be doing next.”

Green then said “That is what is going to keep driving us, this will help us celebrate, saying ‘hey we’re on the right path, but we got a long way to go’ and so everything we’re doing right now is being focused on, is not necessarily that national recognition, that’s a great thing to have, but more importantly it’s what is the impact we need to have right now in our own backyard.”

“This is an extraordinary recognition of the College’s focus on providing this community with access to high quality, affordable education that aligns with careers and jobs in growing sectors.  We’ve made great progress, but in this rapidly changing economy we have more work to do,” said Ballinger.  

The top ten finalists for the 2021 Aspen Prize will be named in May 2020. The Aspen Institute will then conduct site visits to each of the finalists and collect additional quantitative data, including employment and earnings data. A distinguished jury will make award decisions in spring 2021.  This Aspen recognition follows LCCC being recognized by the American Association of Community College as the 2018 Top Community College for Excellence in Student Success, according to a press release.

Campus partners with Amazon for new business courses next semester

Oscar Rosado

 “We’re really excited to be bringing the Amazon Small Business Academy to local entrepreneurs and businesses,” said LCCC President Marcia Ballinger. “This is a perfect fit with our Vision 2025 strategic plan to help improve the economic competitiveness of our region.”

“Our goal is to stimulate innovation and entrepreneurship,” Ballinger said. “By leveraging our facilities and services with a national training program from Amazon we can help foster new growth in our local economy,” said Dr. Ballinger. “This is a great collaborative project between NACCE and our Amazon partner.”

This is in response to the Amazon Small Business Academy which will begin offering its range of digital business courses to Lorain County entrepreneurs and businesses through Lorain County Community College next semester, which was announced on Nov. 1. 

One of seven colleges in the U.S

LCCC is only one of seven community colleges across the U.S. where the academy is being established, according to a press release. The purposes of the courses is to help small businesses harness the power of the internet to reach more customers, build their brand, and grow sales. The initiatives include in-person seminars, community college courses, and webinars.

“I hope the Amazon Small Business Academy program will have people starting a business with Amazon. We’re very excited for it!,” exclaimed Director of the NEO LaunchNET Janice Lapina. “It is good for our institution, for our community, and our region, really. It is a great opportunity; and it gives a national spotlight. The sky’s the limit.”

How it came to be

According to Lapina, this has been in process since Aug. earlier in the year when Amazon pitched to the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship, or NACCE. NACCE is the nation’s leading organization focused on promoting entrepreneurship through community colleges, representing more than 325 community and technical colleges and 2,000 faculty, staff, administrators and presidents who serve more than three million students according to a press release.

“We’re thrilled to embark on this innovative program with Amazon,” said Rebecca Corbin, Ed.D., president and CEO of NACCE.  

It was NACCE whom reached out to LCCC whom was asked to co-lead. Since then, Lapina and her team have been working on the logistics and how it will all work. Lapina said she and her team developed a marketing plan, as well as a formal launch for the courses that will be in place.

The only in Ohio

The Amazon Small Business Academy that will be placed here on campus is the only in the state of Ohio. LCCC itself is developing the curriculum by way of the NEO LaunchNET, and is co-building the curriculum alongside North Idaho College in Coeur dÁlene, Idaho.

There will be eight modules, with the NEO Launch NET doing four, while the other four are made by North Idaho College. The classes offered on campus will be non-credit course according to Lapina.

What will be covered 

The classes will cover the fundamentals of online business strategies, marketing, merchandising, inventory management, and more. The curriculum will provide sixteen hours of beginner, intermediate and advanced content. The content was created in collaboration with NACCE. LCCC is one of two lead NACCE lead schools. The other is North Idaho College, according to a press release. Not every detail is currently planned, as Lapina said Amazon has the final word on everything.

 LCCC will be launching Canvas Catalog, which is a new platform for the institution. According to Lapina, it is basically Canvas but for non-credit courses, and will launch next semester, when the courses are planning to come out.

Currently there is no official location to have these classes, but Lapina said, “We want it somewhere convenient for people, and easy to find.”

According to Lapina, the one who will instruct these courses will be NEO LaunchNET Program Coordinator Matthew Poyle. 

For more information contact Janice Lapina, at (440) 366-4192 or at Lapina@lorainccc.edu

Coach Powers awarded Central Region Men’s Coach of the Year

Coach Jim Powers with his award. Quentin Pardon | The Collegian

Quentin Pardon
Assistant Editor

“My kids actually told me I had won the award,” said Jim Powers, Central Region Men’s Coach of the Year. “I had no idea I had won until my kids started screaming coach you won”. Powers received the trophy at the team banquet before the NJCAA Div.3 Championship meet and the Coaches Association President handed me the award. “It was a total surprise for me but I was greatly appreciative of it. I don’t know how much I deserved it but I appreciate deeply.”

“The kids did all the work. All I did was make sure they were there,” said Powers. The men’s team had won the Div.3 Regional Championship against Columbus State and the sixth ranked women team won an invitational earlier this year at the Finger Lakes Community College Invitational, which is the first time ever the women’s team had won an invitational here. “As far as the year went on, we had a special year. A lot of milestones were accomplished,” he continued. LCCC had five runners make All-Region. Three were women (Kelsey Gannon, Samantha Glass and Mackenzie Glass) and two were men (Charlie Yonts and Henry Haas); the most LC had ever produced off of one season. 

“We also had one All-American, Kelsey Gannon, who took 15th at nationals,” said Powers. Earlier this past season, Gannon was selected as the Division III Runner of the Week in just the second race of her career.  

Due to hard work of the team

Powers said, “It’s due to the hard work of the team. It’s not all me. The team won the award but ultimately they just gave it to me.”  

“Hopefully we’ll have a good group back for next year. I had already talked to some high schoolers who are interested for the next season. This year was phenomenal and I hope for more in the future.” 

Precautions to take action for animal safety in the winter

A domestic dog wearing a sweater with a scarf.
Myah Hogan | The Collegian

Myah Hogan
JRMN 151

Ryan Bennett an LCCC student, age 21, who is majoring in Computer Science Engineering, will now think and possibly buy his dog a pair of booties after hearing about the outside dangers that could harm his dog’s feet. Bennett said, “I own a Siberian husky named Everest. I think animals shouldn’t be left outside for a long period of time. I do walk my dog during the wintertime, but I do not have protection for her feet. I will consider buying booties for her now knowing the possible dangers.”

Words from a veterinarian

Dr. Frank Krupka, age 47, one of the owners, along with being a veterinarian, of the Avon Lake Animal Clinic, said, “It’s not so much as the temperature outside, it’s about freezing temperatures. When it gets below 45 degrees, there is going to be a risk of the animals becoming hypothermic. An animal should not be left unattended, but wind is our biggest factor. That is why wind-chill is important when talking about the weather. It’s all about getting out of the wind.”

Animals need the right materials, such as shelter, during the winter months just like people do. It is preferred that animals stay inside in a warm environment during the winter, but if the animal must be kept outside or in the garage, it will need a specific kind of shelter. The type of shelter that should be provided should keep the animal out of the wind and should be made from a thick material to keep the animal from getting wet. When asked what type of shelter should be used, Dr. Krupka said, “I prefer one that wind will not blow into. So, a doghouse that allows the animal to walk in and turn to go into another area, so there is no wind tunnel blowing right into the house. So, a four-sided structure with a door and a little bit of an alley way which will allow the animal to get out of the wind.” If animals are subject to wind along with cold temperatures, they are at risk of hypothermia. “Hypothermia is the first thing we notice along with frostbite. We see frostbites at extremities, like the tips of the ears, and then obviously hypothermia as in just getting too cold in general,” said Dr. Krupka.

“About clothing materials”

Animal safety is not just about the type of shelter, it is also about the clothing materials along with what animals should be wearing on their feet, such as booties, in order to ensure pet health. When pets are taken outside during the winter season, their paws encounter salt and harmful chemicals. This can be detrimental to an animal’s health, especially when it is ingested. “Paw protection is about a lot of different things. Some of it is about salt exposure. Some of it is about chemical exposure that comes from walking on sidewalks. Other parts of it is about the sharp ice. So, it is not so much as the boots protecting them from the cold, it is more used to keep them safe from traumas like the sharp ice and salt” said Dr. Krupka. When it comes to buying booties for an animal’s feet, the booties should have grip to it or be made from a non-slip material. This will ensure that the animal stays safe when walking on icy sidewalks and roads. This is an important factor when it comes to animal health because the salt from the sidewalks can cause erosions or ulcers on the bottom of the animal’s paws. Dr. Krupka said, “The salt can actually cause erosions or ulcers to the feet, so in order to avoid this, we just need to rinse off their feet when we get back home, but if the animal is wearing booties you can skip this step.”

When it comes to slippery ice, we see a lot of hazards with orthopedic injuries. We see knee injuries and back injuries just like if a person were to slip on the ice.” An animal’s fur should also be left alone because the more protection from the cold, the better. If an animal has a specific style that consists of shaving their fur down, a coat or a sweater would make a great substitute. Although, it is stressed that all animals should be bought sweaters or winter coats along with being given extra blankets during winter weather, Dr. Krupka said, “If a person is going to get a dog groomed and give the animal a short coat, we need to make sure that we put a sweater on them or some type of wind block. Just a light jacket on them will keep their core body temperature warmer. If the animal is going to have extended amounts of time outdoors, it would be a good idea to buy the animal a coat so that they have some type of insulation.” According to Morgan Lisaula, age 23, another student who attends LCCC and is majoring in Nursing, owns one dog and although she sees this information as being insightful, will only consider buying her dog a coat. Lisaula said, “Yes, I have one dog named Koda, his breed is a boxer and no, I do not really think about animal safety because during the winter months my dog does not get much outside activity. I rarely walk my dog during the wintertime. Now knowing this information, it is definitely concerning, but I feel like I’ve never had these complications with any of my animals in the past or currently. So, I believe I will let my dog wear a coat this upcoming winter.”

Animals may get dirty during these cold months, but should we bathe them? According to Dr. Krupka, “So, obviously we don’t want to take the dog outside shortly after a bath. You are getting into their under coats and getting rid of some of their natural insulation by doing a good bath and combing routine, so just make sure the animal is good and dry before taking them outside.”

When an animal is cold, the animal will use up more energy in order to stay warm. When this happens, food portions may need to be increased depending on the breed or on how the individual animal is fairing. “They are using up more energy just to stay warm especially if they are being housed outdoors. I am unsure if indoor dogs use up that much more energy, but then again it all depends on the type of animal. We necessarily do not have to increase food portions, the only reason I would consider shortening up food portions is if the owner decreases the activity level. We typically see 10% weight gain over the winter. It is not that the animals are eating more, it’s that they are less active. So, if the owner is not as active with their pet over the winter, that’s where we can potentially be dealing with some weight gain, but the animals still need to be active, they need to be running around and be just as active even though it’s cold outside. But again, it all depends on what the individual animal needs, so owners should make sure they are paying attention to what their pets need just in case they do need to increase their animal’s food portion.”

Beware of antifreeze

Antifreeze is highly dangerous for any animal and animals should be closely monitored when outside in order to avoid them accidently ingesting it. Antifreeze is a liquid, typically one based on ethylene glycol, used in the radiator in an internal combustion engine, to lower the freezing point of the cooling medium in a motor vehicle (Dictionary.com). Dr. Krupka said, “Antifreeze is a huge risk, it doesn’t take much antifreeze to kill an animal. It causes their kidneys to shut down. But antifreeze is always a risk. During the Spring, Summer and Fall we have antifreeze toxicity potential as well because people are working on their cars. Antifreeze is always in our vehicles meaning it is always a risk. Animals are attracted to it because it has a sweet taste and unfortunately if they find a puddle of it, they will drink it because of it having that sweet taste.”

Animals are more susceptible to outdoor injuries than they are of becoming ill during the winter months. It is important to make sure the animal has scheduled exams along with having a winter wellness exam, especially if it is a senior pet. The winter wellness exam is important because an animal may become sick before winter or may have a health issue and if it is not caught early on, the animal may struggle during the cold months or have a drastic decrease in its health. Dr. Krupka said, “Frostbite is when the animal gets red and inflamed tissue around the ear margins which can lead to the tissue cracking and then falling off. So, that would be a traumatic injury to the animal. Broken nails and cut feet will obviously resolve in bleeding. There is far less bacterial and viral spread in the wintertime outdoors just because of the environment. So, we tend to see less contagious diseases during the wintertime and more of traumatic injuries. All pets should receive regular wellness exams. With senior pets, twice a year is a good idea and if it is a young active animal, I do not think a winter exam is needed unless there is some medical ailment that is happening.”

Even if a person does not own any animals, they still need to be on the lookout for outside animals. Stray animals use the hoods of cars, along with hiding underneath them for warmth and shelter, which can cause serious harmful injuries if people do not notice them soon enough. According to Dr. Krupka, “Sometimes we see dogs and cats both get up into the hoods of cars trying to seek heat in there. So, if we know there are animals in the environment that would be seeking shelter in the hood or where there’s a warm area, check in those places before you start up the car. We have seen fan blade injuries a lot.”

Celebrating the life and legacy of Toni Morrison

Keynote speaker Marilyn Sanders Mobley Ph. D. at the Spitzer Conference Center speaking about the legacy of Toni Morrison Angela Andujar | The Collegian

Angela Andujar
Staff Writer

Lorain County Community College celebrated the life and works of Lorain born Nobel Prize and Pulitzer Prize winning novelist, Toni Morrison, after her passing on Aug. 5, 2019 at the age of 88. Born Chloe Anthony Wofford on Feb. 18, 1931, Morrison would go on to write novels covering topics of community, family, and African-American life and culture.

Keynote speaker Marilyn Sanders Mobley, PhD, whose first book, “Folk Roots and Mythic Wings in Sarah Orne Jewett and Toni Morrison: The Cultural Function of Narrative”, was one of the first cross-cultural studies on the Nobel Prize winning author. Mobley thanked Morrison for creating a place of belonging for her works recalling, “Love for her adaptability to work with language until it spoke to us with richness and complexity that was familiar and welcome, and trust that she respected us and the community from which she came with a deep sense of knowing.”

Jewon Woo, PhD, African-American literature professor here at LCCC, worked with her students to help create a digital map and narrative of Toni Morrison life in Lorain. Some places include her home on Elyria Ave. and the Old Lorain Library. Many of the places included were worked into Morrison’s writing. Anybody can view this digital map at https://uploads.knightlab.com/storymapjs/3bde773f6fea3d4e97bc8a9373de6b0e/toni-morrisons-lorain/index.html

Alumni of NEO LaunchNET return for homecoming

Matthew Poyle (left) and Lisa Mackin (right) of NEO LaunchNET. Oscar Rosado | The Collegian

Tracy Carden-Marson, owner of Tracy’s Trinkets & Treasures + MORE at her display. Oscar Rosado | The Collegian

Freelance Writer Kelly Boyer Sagert at her table.

Oscar Rosado

Ten businesses representatives came to campus on Nov. 19 for NEO LaunchNET’s Homecoming event. It consisted of alumni of the school who have been clients of the NEO LaunchNET who have started their businesses.

A few of the alumni representatives

One of these representatives is Tracy Carden-Marson, who is the owner of Tracy’s Trinkets & Treasures + MORE, located at 354 Broad St. in Elyria, OH. She has been selling her product independently in Avon for 11 years. Carden-Marson just opened her business, Tracy’s Trinkets & Treasures + MORE, one year ago. Her business includes selling handmade and homemade items; all organic. A few of these items include soaps, candles, and other goods. She works full time, seven days a week, and is a mother of seven children, and a grandmother of five. 

Freelance Writer, Kelly Boyer Sagert is also an alumni, who now currently works on assortments of written projects. She writes for publications and for clients. She said for publications, they are under her name, and for clients she uses a ghost name. She has published 18 books under her name, ghost written five books, wrote five plays, and said has written parts of larger works, as well as articles. She studied Psychology at Bowling Green, but soon came to LCCC and took basic classes such as marketing, and accounting. With help of the NEO LaunchNET she was able to succeed with her business. Currently she is self employed, and writes for all types of clients, and is based in Lorain.

“We’re very proud of our alumni. It’s been a great event so far,” said NEO LaunchNET Program Coordinator Matthew Poyle.

Facts and concerns of internet addiction for students and youths

Weliton DeOliveira
JRMN 151

 “I know that cell phones can be a distraction, that’s why sometimes I put my phone away in a drawer while I’m doing homework,” said A. Zvaigzne from North Ridgeville. She added, “According to my phone stats, I am spending an average of 3.5 hours a week online.” That’s a little over the average of 3.42 hours a day that Americans spend online, according to MIT Technology Review.

Another student, C. Bentley from Elyria knows it well too, as he said, “If I also count the time that I’m listening to music while I’m sleeping, I am usually online almost 24 hours a day.” Bentley said that he started using a radio so he can have something on the background while doing homework, so he can put the phone away and get the work done.

People usually don’t pay much attention to it because they think it is an inoffensive thing, when asked if the internet affects their life and/or school work, most of them answered “no”, but when asked if they check on their phones while performing school or work tasks, all of them answered “yes.”

Technology expanding

The 21st century will be marked as the booming of technology, ever since the iPhone was introduced in 2007. Technology has expanded in a fast and some may even say scary way. The internet has reached unimaginable speeds, and today almost everything is connected to the internet, from toasters to cars, and even clothes. 

With it, the internet also brought one thing that people usually prefer not to talk about. In their minds it is a normal thing, but in reality it is becoming a concern for many organizations, governments and parents that are worried about the amount of time their children spend online. This is the “Internet Addiction.”

Who are most vulnerable

Teenagers are the most vulnerable to social media and internet addictions, since their presence online by far exceeds any other age group. Many cellphone manufacturers started including information on the percentage and amount of data someone spends on each App. Apple went one step further and now started sending notifications on the average amount of time you spend online every day.

Easily accessed

Today, many sources of entertainment like Netflix, Hulu and many other apps, can easily be accessed on the go, on tablets, laptops and cellphones. Social media, like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and many others, also play a big role on the amount of time people spend online.

  • Approximately 3.48 billion people (roughly 45 percent of the world’s population) use social media.
  • Some teenagers spend up to nine hours every day on social media.
  • Teenagers who spend five hours a day on their phones are twice more likely to show depressive symptoms.
  • It is estimated, more than 210 million people suffer from internet and social media addictions.
  • Approximately 71 percent of people sleep with or next to their phone every night.
  • Approximately 10 percent of teens check their phones more than ten times per night.

Source: Famemass.com

Alumni pays visit to campus and gives words of advice

Brown. Submitted photo.

Oscar Rosado

Alumni Michael J. Brown paid a visit back to his alma mater LCCC. From Grafton, OH, Brown went to Midview High School, and after he graduated, attended LCCC in 1976 and registered for classes to pursue an Associates of Arts. Brown thought he would become a funeral director like his grandfather before him, but LCCC opened up his mindset, as he met a lot of leaders in Lorain County that shaped his life.

Later on, Brown was in corporate America for 24 years, working as vice president of U.S public affairs in 1994 before being named president in 2016 at Barrick U.S.A, the American subsidiary of the world’s largest gold mining company. Prior, Brown had served eight years at the U.S Department of the Treasury during the Reagan Administration, followed by six years as vice president of government affairs at the Gold Institute in Washington, D.C. Brown had retired in 2018.

Brown hasn’t been on campus in 40 years, and was a guest speaker at a conference in Las Vegas, where President Marcia Ballinger Ph. D. was at, and reconnected. Dr. Ballinger had invited Brown back to LCCC as a commencement speaker last May.

“Building a resume”

“It’s less about building a resume and more about building a legacy,” said Brown for students currently enrolled. “Where can I make the most difference?”

“This is an amazing institution, I have visited colleges and community colleges all around the nation for forty years,” said Brown. Later he said, “I have yet to find a community college that is as advanced and committed to its student’s success as Lorain County Community College. This is a remarkable institution.”

Words for students today

Brown had a few words to say to students currently enrolled. “On a personal level, I will say to students: get an education while you’re here, but also have some fun! Get engaged in something here. College is not an assembly line, it’s not a factory. It’s where you can build relationships and friendships that may carry through all over your life. One of the friendships I made has lasted personally and professionally for over 40 years,” said Brown. He later said, “While you’re here, join a club play a sport, have some fun. While you’re here, enjoy it.”

His time as a student

Brown, in his time at LCCC was an active student senator. He was the Vice President of the Student Senate, and made sure student’s voices were heard.

“Curiously enough, the more important classes I’ve took here that helped shaped my thinking were actually American Literature. It just widened my world view, and it helped my critical thinking,” said Brown. He went on to say that even though sometimes when students come to college and go after a specific degree, such as accounting, some can say ‘oh darn why do I have to take this class in such and such’ and had said “and yet, I think I picked up more lessons in those classes that stuck with me.”

Words for first generation

Brown is a first generation college student, and had a few words for those who are currently first generation college students.

“It can be very daunting. Take full advantage of the resources here, the counselors, the professors, the administration. If you fear yourself slipping behind, get the help. On the other hand, be proud of being first generation! You’re going to create a wave that’s going to go for several more generations, and you are the foundation for more that are going to follow you,” said Brown. “Even after you graduate, keep updating your education and your skills.”

Currently, Brown is now the state of Nevada’s economic development director in the office of the governor, and currently resides in Las Vegas, NV.

Coping with anxiety issues in classrooms

Oscar Rosado

“Anxiety makes it really hard when teachers ask questions in class,” said fine arts major Angelina Rubensaal who has been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder. “I am in constant fear if I get a question wrong. What will the professor think? What will my classmates think?” To cope with her anxiety she said she fiddles with objects such as pens and her keys, and ties and unties her hair. “I am 98% sure I’ll get the answer right, but what about the 2%?” said Rubensaal.

According to NAMI.org and Centers for Diseases Control via CDC.gov, the following are based on diagnostic interview data, an estimated 31.9% of adolescents have any anxiety disorder.

However, Rubensaal is not alone. Many students feel anxious during class, but why is the question? Learning Specialist at the Accessibility Center, Kelly McLaughlin has an answer. McLaughlin, who taught Psychology on campus since 2005 and have worked at the Accessibility Services since 2012, said it is the umbrella of anxiety disorder. If the umbrella is open, it leads to a panic attack. If the person recalls of an event two years ago, it triggers something in the brain.

“We don’t realize how many people have anxiety in one form or another,” said McLaughlin. “Anxiety deals with the chemical makeup of our brain. It can be inherited by our biological parents causing it to be an underlying anxiety disorder.” 

McLaughlin added that anxiety can be an invisible disorder/disability. “When you see someone in a wheelchair, that something you can physically see. Anxiety is on the inside, something we cannot easily see.”

According to her, different things can trigger panic attacks which can lead to anxiety. She gave an example if a person were to have a car accident in the winter, they would show signs of the symptoms next winter. The snow and the highway would become triggers. “If they have a bad experience they can set back further,” said McLaughlin.

“It can affect their grades, it can be debilitating. Most classes require class participation, and students who have anxiety in the classroom, it can be hard for them. If anxious when taking a test, students feel the need to take it to another room,” said McLaughlin.

An example McLaughlin gave of someone with classroom anxiety was of an unnamed student who was taking a speech class. Part of the class was to speak publicly to classmates, but McLaughlin recalled the teacher was so great, instead of a speech in front of the whole class, the student was able to give a speech to just the teacher and two other classmates. “It was the teacher’s idea and I think it’s great teachers are willing to come to our office and help their students.”

McLaughlin proceeded to speak about debilitating anxiety which she said, “it is so strong and severe it affects daily life. It crashes in on you, and causes a hard time functioning that day.”

She shared a case approximately eight years ago where a student had stayed in their home for a year and a half. McLaughlin identified this as agoraphobia. It is when you have great fear of leaving your home. “You feel the need to be in a safe place, typically that safe place is home. If you leave home, you will have panic attacks,” said McLaughlin. She added even coming to school can be a challenge for people with anxiety.

“It takes everything within that student to do what they need to do for school,” said McLaughlin. “All those steps take tremendous effort. Anxiety can take a lot of energy. For some people, it is easier to stay home.”

Help is there for you

However, help is there. Some get help with a medical doctor, a psychiatrist, or a counselor. Ways to deal with anxiety is having coping skills.

“Life is busy,” said McLaughlin. “A great way to cope is to do some type of exercise. A way to increase the chemicals in your brain. It doesn’t have to be big, it can as simple as parking your car in the last row and walking a little bit extra,” said McLaughlin. “If you take classes, you have free access to our gym to walk on the track, treadmill, etc. Some do not know it is good for them. As long as you are registered in at least one class,” said McLaughlin.

“People might want to limit their caffeine. It makes the neurotransmitters in the brain more active. It is a stimulant, like a drug,” said McLaughlin. 

Another way to cope is seating arrangements in classrooms, such as sitting in front of the class or the back of the class. “If they need to leave the room they can walk out the door,” said McLaughlin.

More support with those with anxiety can attend the Learning Differences Club. They welcome any students with disabilities and can join and get support from each other. Another place to go for support is the Care Center which helps students in recovery. They have a calming room for students who simply want to sit down. “It’s amazing that students can take action and do that,” said McLaughlin. 

Along with limiting caffeine, and exercising, McLaughlin said it is important to sleep for a decent amount of time. Another thing to do is having extra lights around. She added, people who do cope using these methods have come to them and said their anxiety wasn’t as bad anymore.

“Anxiety and depression can become more severe around this time of year,” said McLaughlin. This is called Seasonal Affective Disorder. When seasons change, it can trigger more anxiety. “Never underestimate to talk to a friend,” said McLaughlin.

McLaughlin added in College it’s important people self disclose for themselves. Since they are in College, they are adults, and if they need help, they must take action on their own. “People would want to change, and there is help available to change,” said McLaughlin.

“They are the bravest people I’ve ever met. To walk to our door and for them to say, ‘can I talk to somebody’, it is not easy to reach out for help. Students we have helped are glad they did when they did, and a lot wish they would have done it sooner,” said McLaughlin regarding people who come to their office.

To receive help from the accessibility services, students must have documents from a doctor, psychiatrist, or counselor letting them know the student does indeed require additional assistance. Documentation that must be given to the accessibility services is known as a verification of disability.

  • Of adolescents with any anxiety disorder, an estimated 8.3% had severe impairment. DSM-IV criteria were used to determine impairment.
  • The prevalence of any anxiety disorder among adolescents was higher for females (38.0%) than for males (26.1%).
  • Forty million U.S adults suffer from an anxiety disorder and 75 percent of them experience their first episode of anxiety by the age of 22.

Source: The Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA)

College offers ways to prevent cardiovascular disease

Jayne Giese
Staff Writer

Living a healthy lifestyle is not only beneficial for physical appearance as well as health, but it is also the number one recommended way to help prevent cardiovascular disease.  Cardiovascular disease is the number one killer in America for both men and women, according to www. cdc.gov. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.). 

“There is so much information out there on many other diseases.  For example, it is a common misconception that breast cancer is the number one cause of death for women when it is actually in fact cardiovascular disease,” said Lisa Augustine, Ph.D. Interim Dean for the Health and Wellness Sciences Division at Lorain County Community College.

Vital to live healthy

“It is important for young people to get in a healthy lifestyle now, that is the biggest defense against cardiovascular disease. Many students don’t realize all the resources available to them right here on campus that are free,” Augustine said.

LCCC has many avenues for students to get some type of physical activity while they are on campus.  All students qualify for memberships at the fitness center.  The center includes resistance training, cardio equipment, an indoor track, basketball, tennis, volleyball, and running programs. 

“Next month we have a wellness event for children in the PE building. The event days are Nov. 12, 19, and 21 from 9:15 a.m.-10 a.m.  The classes are taught by my students, and this event helps make learning about fitness and living a healthy lifestyle fun for kids.  The classes consist of yoga poses, dancing, making healthy food choices, heart rate monitoring, the importance of hand sanitizer, and other activities,” said Augustine.

On Nov. 20, from 12:00 p.m.- 12:50 p.m. Jihad Khalil, MD from the Cleveland Clinic, will host an event all about cardiovascular disease. The event will take place in the Norton Culinary Arts Center Lobby.    

“Never too late to start”

“The biggest message I want to get across to everyone is that it is never too late to start building a healthy foundation.  You are never too old or too young, you can start today.  Utilize the services we have on campus, use portion control and watch what you eat, and stay hydrated. I can’t stress that enough,” Augustine urged. 

The warning signs

  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • Upper body pain or discomfort in the arms, jaw, back, neck, or upper stomach
  • Shortness of breath
  • Nausea, light-headedness, or cold sweats

Risk factors

  • Diabetes
  • Overweight or obesity
  • Poor diet
  • Physical inactivity
  • Excessive alcohol use
  • Tobacco and nicotine products

(Source: CDC.gov)