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Engineering degree program recognized as leader in retention and transition

Written by staff. Posted in Schools

SJC named 1 of 3 Hispanic Serving Institution award recipients

SJC HSI Retention and Transition AwardThe San Jacinto College engineering sciences associate degree program has been named a recipient of the Excellence in Retention and Transition for Hispanic Serving Institutions award by Texas A&M University. Pictured left to right: Dr. Brenda Jones, San Jacinto College South Campus provost; Andrew Vines, San Jacinto College South Campus department chair for chemistry, engineering, geology, and physics; Dr. Karen Duston, San Jacinto College South Campus engineering program coordinator and professor; Dr. Laurel Williamson, San Jacinto College deputy chancellor and president; and Dr. Brenda Hellyer, San Jacinto College chancellor. Photo credit: Andrea Vasquez, San Jacinto College marketing, public relations, and government affairs department.San Jacinto College is one of three Texas Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSI) to be designated a recipient of the Excellence in Retention and Transition for Hispanic Serving Institutions award by Texas A&M University for its engineering sciences associate degree program.

Each award recipient institution receives a $1,500 award and an invitation to present at Texas A&M University’s HSI Mid Years Engineering Experience Conference (MYEEC). The international conference focuses on the middle years between engineering students’ first year and the final year, which includes an emphasis on sophomore retention, and discipline specific and professional preparation in their junior year.

Both Andrew Vines, San Jacinto College South Campus department chair for chemistry, engineering, geology, and physics, and Dr. Karen Duston, San Jacinto College South Campus engineering program coordinator and professor, presented their paper, “Instilling Student Confidence,” which highlighted successful student success strategies of the College’s engineering sciences associate degree program including confidence in the engineering program, confidence in student support, and confidence in completion of the program and successful matriculation into a four-year engineering program.

DPHS students reach for the long arm of the law

Written by Holly Galvan. Posted in Schools

DPHS CJclassDeer Park High School gives students potentially interested in a career in law enforcement a way to get an inside look into criminal justice. The criminal justice class is an introduction to law enforcement careers. Photo by Holly Galvan.For Deer Park High School students that have an interest in any aspect of law enforcement, the criminal justice class can give students more information. Students in the criminal justice class learn the foundation of law enforcement and an inside look in the field.

Student Resource Officer Jason LaPoint showed students various equipment that was in their police vehicles that officers would need while out on patrol such as crime tape and traffic vests.

“We don’t want to place ourselves in dangerous situations. Items we keep in our vehicles can keep us safe,” said LaPoint, who is a Deer Park Police officer.

Officer Del Wilcoxson asked the group if they are interested in a career in law enforcement and got various responses. Some students want to be police officers, in the FBI and lawyers.

Glitches causing issues with STAAR testing statewide

Written by Bobby Vasquez. Posted in Schools

Deer Park ISD reporting problems with 5 student tests

focus testingAs students across the state began their STAAR standardized testing, news of problems with the test began emerging as well.

Reports throughout the state on Monday stated software programs logged off students during the exam; lost some students’ places on their test; and did not save students answers.

The problems were limited to students taking the online administration of the State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness.

According to the Texas Education Agency, some districts across the state reported to TEA and Educational Testing Service (ETS), the vendor administering STAAR statewide, that students’ previously selected responses on an online test were not appearing. This would occur once a student logged back into their online test after either officially logging out, being timed out after 30 minutes of inactivity, or in situations where districts have temporarily lost connectivity to the Internet. Other issues have also been identified.

In Deer Park ISD, some minor issues were reported, according to Matt Lucas, the district’s director of communications.

AVID puts middle-of-the-pack students on fast track to college

Written by Holly Galvan. Posted in Schools

AVIDDPHS students can receive tutoring in small groups or one-on-one in AVID classes. AVID prepares students for college and helps students raise their grades. Photo by Holly Galvan.Students in Deer Park ISD have the opportunity to receive help to get them to the next level academically through AVID classes.

The AVID Deer Park High School program has 379 students enrolled. Around 163 of those students have been in AVID for three or more years. Students can enter the program as early as seventh grade.

AVID-Advancement Via Individual Determination is a college-preparation program. AVID students receive time to collaborate with their peers and with college tutors over school and college prep.

Students are invited to join AVID. The classes are targeted for students in the academic middle with the desire to go to college and the willingness to work hard. DPHS AVID teacher Cassandra Himes said she sees students make more informed decisions for college after attending the class.

DPHS students on a mission to end cancer

Written by Holly Galvan. Posted in Schools

ACYSDPHS students are on a mission to help end cancer. Members of the American Cancer Youth Society are seeking donations for an upcoming Relay for Life event. Photo courtesy Elizabeth Williams.In the ongoing fight against cancer, students at Deer Park High School are doing what they can to help. The American Cancer Society Youth Club gives DPHS students an opportunity to raise funds and support students effected by cancer.

Elizabeth Williams is a Spanish teacher at DPHS and facilitates the ACSYC.

“The purpose [of the club] is to raise awareness of cancer on our campus and within the community, especially regarding risk reduction, prevention, and early detection, as well as making a difference in the lives of those who suffer from the disease,” she said.

Several of Williams’s students have family members fighting cancer. Two years ago Angelica Juarez, one of Williams’s students, was struggling with her mom’s recent cancer diagnosis. Williams decided to start a Relay for Life team with her students as a way to help Juarez and show support. That first year the club raised $2,500 in two weeks by selling “May the Cure be with You” shirts and continued as a club the following year. She said she realized the hunger among her students to do something to end cancer.

Library, Education Foundation present bookmark contest

Written by staff. Posted in Schools

StridesforSchoolsThe Deer Park Public Library and the Deer Park Education Foundation are hosting a joint bookmark contest for area students age 4-20

During the contest – which will officially begins March 10 – students are invited to design a bookmark with the theme of “Fitness and Well-Being” for a chance to win not only a Barnes & Noble gift card, but also a chance to have their work reproduced and distributed as bookmarks. All entries will be displayed at the April 30 Strides for Schools event.

According to Jennifer Torres, Deer Park Education Foundation cordinator, entry forms will be available for pickup at the Deer Park Public Library and all Deer Park Independent School District libraries.

Participants will have until Thursday, March 24 to design their bookmark entry and return it for judging.