Community - Cuyahoga Community College

Community - Cuyahoga Community College

A PUBLICATION OF CUYAHOGA COMMUNITY COLLEGE FALL 2015 Tri-C is your Community Meet your neighborhood business owners Earvin “Magic” Johnson Keynot...

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Tri-C is your


Meet your neighborhood business owners

Earvin “Magic” Johnson Keynote at the Presidential Scholarship Luncheon

The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center Dedication

Tri-C Times is published by the Cuyahoga Community College Integrated Communications department for its friends and constituents. Feedback and story ideas are welcome. Send correspondence to Tri-C Times, 2500 E. 22nd St., Cleveland, Ohio 44115, call 216-987-4322, or email [email protected]

Advanced Technology Training Center 3409 Woodland Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115 Brunswick University Center 3605 Center Road Brunswick, Ohio 44212

FA L L 2015

COVER STORY: TRI-C IS YOUR COMMUNITY Many Tri-C students go on to start small businesses that become part of the fabric of the community. Meet five.


Corporate College® East 4400 Richmond Road Warrensville Hts., Ohio 44128 Corporate College® West 25425 Center Ridge Road Westlake, Ohio 44145



Onkey named inaugural chair/dean of humanities at Tri-C

Former NBA player and entrepreneur holds court at Presidential Scholarship Luncheon

District Administrative Services 700 Carnegie Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115 Eastern Campus 4250 Richmond Road Highland Hills, Ohio 44122 Hospitality Management Center of Excellence at Public Square 180 Euclid Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115 Jerry Sue Thornton Center 2500 E. 22nd St. Cleveland, Ohio 44115



Metropolitan Campus 2900 Community College Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115 Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts 2809 Woodland Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115 Truck Driving Academy Heritage Business Park 23555 Euclid Ave., Suite 105 Euclid, Ohio 44117 Unified Technologies Center 2415 Woodland Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115 Western Campus 11000 Pleasant Valley Road Parma, Ohio 44130 Westshore Campus 31001 Clemens Road Westlake, Ohio 44145

Editor Mary Gygli Copy Editor Jarrod Zickefoose Writers Beth Cieslik John Horton Tamara London Karen Sandstrom Jarrod Zickefoose Photographers Joe Darwal Jeff Forman Tamara London Janet Macoska Magnus International Group David Richard Howard Tucker McKinley Wiley Cody York

Cover and page 7 illustrations by Karen Sandstrom.





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A Message from the President

s Cuyahoga Community College’s president, I often begin a conversation with someone in Greater Cleveland only to find that the person I am speaking with already has a connection to Tri-C. When you consider the College’s long tradition of educational access and quality in our region, this should not be surprising. As we relate in this issue, Tri-C is an intrinsic part of our community. Tri-C stories are as numerous, as powerful and as unique as the nearly 1 million residents who have passed through our doors over the past half-century. Many of those Tri-C graduates and students can tell a story about how the College helped them find their passion, hone their skills or retrain for a career change. In this issue, you will read about five individuals who built on their academic success at Tri-C to start businesses in their neighborhoods: Tri-C is Your Community (page 8). Their stories serve as just a few examples of the College’s role as an economic driver in Cuyahoga County. Supported by residents through operating levies, the College gives as good as it gets. For every dollar spent on a Tri-C education, the community receives $10.50 in benefits as that student joins and participates in the workforce. For more details, read the economic impact report included in this magazine (page 15). We were honored to begin writing new Tri-C stories through the dedication of the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center on Tri-C Eastern Campus Sept. 29, and to welcome Lauren Onkey as its inaugural dean (page 20). The Mandel Center will be a national model for engagement in the humanities and will offer a unique liberal arts learning environment to cultivate civically responsible citizens. We are deeply grateful to the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation and the Mandel Supporting Foundations for the generous gift to establish the center and endow the chair for the humanities/ dean position. It was also a pleasure to welcome Earvin “Magic” Johnson to our 2015 Cuyahoga Community College Foundation’s Presidential Scholarship Luncheon (page 26), an event that raises funds for those who might otherwise be unable to afford a college education. Johnson joins a list of distinguished speakers who have headlined the annual luncheon, including former presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton; former British Prime Minister Tony Blair; and Madeline Albright, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, all former U.S. secretaries of state. This amazing event has been led for more than two decades by Gloria Moosmann, who, over the course of her career, has worked for all four Tri-C presidents. She is leaving her role as vice president of development and Tri-C Foundation in December. Not surprisingly, she also has a fascinating Tri-C story to tell as she begins a new chapter in her life, and that of the College (page 22). Do you also have a Tri-C story? We would love to hear it. Email us at [email protected] Sincerely,

Alex Johnson, Ph.D. President



Tri-C Awarded Grant to Help Former Foster Youth GRANT WILL HELP ESTABLISH A MENTORING PROGRAM TO IMPROVE STUDENT SUCCESS Cuyahoga Community College has been awarded a grant to improve retention and graduation rates for students who arrived on campus after aging out of the state’s foster care system. Studies show that former foster youth — who lack the safety net of family support — often struggle to complete college. Only 9 percent earn a bachelor’s degree by age 26, a success rate less than half that of the general population. Ohio Reach selected Tri-C for a three-year, $60,000 grant to address the issue. The Cuyahoga Community College Foundation secured the grant to launch the program.

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Program Spurs Revenue Growth and Job Creation SUCCESS IN NORTHEAST OHIO MIRRORS NATIONAL RESULTS

TRI-C NAMES NEW CHIEF ACADEMIC OFFICER CRAIG FOLTIN SELECTED AS EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT OF ACCESS, LEARNING AND SUCCESS Craig Foltin was named the College’s provost and chief academic officer after being named executive vice president of Access, Learning and Success. Foltin came to Tri-C in 2007 as the College’s chief financial officer. His faculty experience includes more than two decades as a parttime instructor at Cleveland State University and seven years as an adjunct faculty member at Tri-C. He also has lectured nationally on the topic of state and local government performance. Before coming to Tri-C, Foltin served as the elected mayor and auditor of the city of Lorain. Foltin earned his doctorate in business administration from Cleveland State University. He also holds a master’s degree from Cleveland State and a bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University.


Northeast Ohio entrepreneurs who completed the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program at Cuyahoga Community College outperformed the broader economy while exceeding national averages in revenue growth and job creation. Nearly two of three participants in the 10,000 Small Businesses program at Tri-C reported increased revenue at their companies in the first six months after graduation, and more than 40 percent hired more employees. By comparison, less than half of small-business owners nationally saw revenue growth, while only 22 percent added jobs, according to a survey by the National Small Businesses Association.

For information about the program, go to or call 216-987-3220.

Photography Exhibit Tells the Powerful Story Behind ‘Violins of Hope’

An exhibit of photographs by Daniel Levin, an associate professor of photography at Cuyahoga Community College, documents an Israeli man’s lifelong mission to preserve violins played by Jewish musicians during the Holocaust. The exhibition — titled Amnon’s Workshop — features 75 large-scale prints and is on display through Nov. 8 at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, 25701 Science Park Drive in Beachwood. The photographs detail the work of master violin maker Amnon Weinstein, the man behind the Violins of Hope project. Weinstein lovingly restores and gives new voice to stringed instruments that survived the horrors of the Holocaust, even when their owners perished. Levin traveled to Israel earlier this year to capture the intimate images of Weinstein and his work, which convey a story of endurance and resilience through the power of music. Levin, of Cleveland Heights, has taught at the College since 2002.

For information, email [email protected] or call 216-593-2856.

Performing Arts Series



oes traveling from the opposite side of the globe earn performers credibility with Northeast Ohio audiences? Maybe. But amazing artists living just a short drive away also deserve appreciation and applause. Cuyahoga Community College will prove that during its 2015-16 Tri-C Presents performing arts season. “World-class artists in our region are often overlooked because of their proximity,” said Terri Pontremoli, director of Tri-C JazzFest and Tri-C Presents. “We all tend to take things for granted when they’re close to home.” Pontremoli went hunting this year for some of the highest quality performers who just happen to be from Ohio or surrounding states. She landed artists such as violinist Gabriel Bolkosky from Ann Arbor, Mich., and the Cavani String Quartet, a Cleveland favorite. The series’ celebration of regional gems began with a Sept. 12 performance and master class by the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company. It will conclude May 5 with the dynamic One World Tribe from Erie, Pa. Tri-C Presents also supports the Tri-C Classical

Cavani String Quartet with Mwatabu Okantah

Piano Series, a free concert series at the Cleveland Museum of Art, and other cultural events such as author visits, College theater performances and student productions. For more details, visit

EVENTS: Violinist Gabriel Bolkosky: 7 p.m. Nov. 13, 2015, Mainstage Theatre, Tri-C Metropolitan Campus, 2809 Woodland Ave., Cleveland. Tickets: $15 in advance, $20 at the door. Call 216-987-4444 or visit Tri-C Classical Piano Series presents Orazio Maione: 2 p.m. Nov. 22, 2015, Gartner Auditorium, Cleveland Museum of Art, 11150 East Blvd., Cleveland. Free. Call 216-987-2060. Black Box Club creative arts showcase of student work in film, art, design, dance, journalism, music and theater: 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9, 2015, Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts, 2809 Woodland Ave., Cleveland. Free.

Tri-C Classical Piano Series presents Zsolt Bognãr: 2 p.m. Feb. 7, 2016, Gartner Auditorium, Cleveland Museum of Art, 11150 Zsolt Bognãr East Blvd., Cleveland. Free. Call 216-987-2060. Tri-C Classical Piano Series presents Stanislav Khristenko: 2 p.m. March 6, 2016, Gartner Auditorium, Cleveland Museum of Art, 11150 East Blvd., Cleveland. Free. Call 216-987-2060. Cavani “Collage” music and poetry with Mwatabu Okantah: 7:30 p.m. April 1, 2016, The Simon and Rose Mandel Theatre, Tri-C Eastern Campus, 4250 Richmond Road, Highland Hills. Tickets: $15 in advance, $20 at the door. Call 216-987-4444 or visit

Columbus Jazz Orchestra plays the music of Sting and Steely Dan: 7:30 p.m. April 14, 2016, Hudson High School, 2500 Hudson Aurora Road, Hudson. Tickets: $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Call 216-987-4444. Western Campus Creative Arts showcase of student work in film, art, design, dance, journalism, music and theater: 1 p.m. April 27, 2016, Tri-C Western Campus, 11000 Pleasant Valley Road, Parma. Free. One World Tribe: 7:30 p.m. May 5, 2016, MOCA Cleveland, 11400 Euclid Ave., Cleveland. Tickets: $15 in advance, $20 at the door. Call 216-987-4444 or visit



A look at the 2015-2016 basketball rosters, season


he Cuyahoga Community College men’s and women’s basketball seasons kicked off Oct. 30-31 at the Kennedy-King Tournament at Kennedy-King College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago. The men’s team is all new this year, while the women have four returning players and 10 new players. “We look much better than last year,” said Derrick Williams, women’s basketball team head coach. Mike Duncan, head coach of the men’s team, described his roster as “solid.” Duncan said key contests this season will include Schoolcraft College (Livonia, Mich.), which has an entirely veteran roster; Cincinnati State; and rivals Lakeland Community College, which beat Tri-C twice last season. Williams said to watch for match-ups with division rivals Owens Community College (Toledo) and Cincinnati State. “The conference is always challenging because we are in one of the toughest junior-college divisions in the country,” Williams said.

Mandell Ransaw Position: Forward/Center Height: 6’5” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Cleveland High School: Max S. Hayes High School   Larenz Thurman Position: Guard Height: 6’0” Class: Freshman Hometown: Wilmington, Del. High School: Philadelphia Electrical and Tech Charter School   Cortez Allen Position: Forward Height: 6’4” Class: Freshman Hometown: Cleveland High School: Horizon Science Academy Greg Smalley Position: Forward Height: 6’5” Class: Freshman Hometown: Berea High School: Parma High School  


Earl Holcomb V Position: Guard Height: 6’2” Class: Freshman Hometown: Cleveland High School: Max S. Hayes


  Rico Jones Position: Guard Height: 6’0” Class: Freshman Hometown: Richmond Heights High School: Richmond Heights High School   Austin Daniels Position: Guard Height: 6’0” Class: Freshman Hometown: Gary, Ind. High School: The Bowman Leadership Academy   Isaiah McQueen Position: Guard Height: 6’3” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Willoughby High School: Cornerstone Christian Academy   Yvelt Exil Position: Guard Height: 5’10” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Union, N.J. High School: Union High School  

Kash Blackwell Position: Guard Height: 6’4” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Cleveland High School: Shaker Heights High School

Destini Turner Position: Forward Height: 5’8” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Akron High School: Firestone High School

Ebony Young Position: Center Height: 6’4” Class: Freshman Hometown: Shaker Heights High School: Shaker Heights High School

Mervin Taylor Position: Guard Height: 6’3” Class: Freshman Hometown: Cincinnati High School: Woodrow High School  

Erin Burbank Position: Guard Height: 5’2” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Belleville, Mich. High School: Belleville High School

Arieone Moore Position: Guard Height: 5’2” Class: Freshman Hometown: Cleveland High School: Cleveland Central Catholic High School

Jonathan Jones No photo available Position: Forward/Center Height: 6’6” Class: Freshman Hometown: Akron High School: North High School

Erica Davis Position: Guard/Forward Height: 5’10” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Cleveland High School: Holy Name High School

Cheyenne Blaine Position: Guard Height: 5’9” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Marshall, Mich. High School: Marshall Academy

Sean Marable No photo available Position: Guard Height: 6’2” Class: Freshman Hometown: Twinsburg High School: Twinsburg High School

Darian Carter Position: Guard Height: 5’10” Class: Freshman Hometown: Akron High School: Firestone High School

Daesia Avery Position: Forward Height: 6’0’’ Class: Freshman Hometown: Cleveland Heights High School: Cleveland Heights High School

Ja’Lynn Starks Position: Guard Height: 5’8” Class: Freshman Hometown: Ravenna High School: Ravenna High School

Deliangelis Berlingeri Position: Center Height: 6’1” Class: Freshman Hometown: Cleveland High School: John Marshall High School

Keri Hill Position: Center Height: 6’2” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Strongsville High School: Strongsville High School

Donnae Waters Position: Forward Height: 5’10’’ Class: Sophomore Hometown: Garfield Heights High School: John Adams High School


WOMEN’S BASKETBALL FINAL ROSTER Tashanae Duncan Position: Guard Height: 5’1” Class: Sophomore Hometown: Cleveland High School: James F. Rhodes High School Samaria Tufts Position: Guard Height: 5’8” Class: Freshman Hometown: Cleveland Heights High School: Cleveland Heights High School

Rosters are subject to change.



Community Meet former students who own businesses in your neighborhood


uyahoga Community College graduates go on to diverse occupations. Some become nurses, artists, manufacturers or computer programmers. But others forge their own paths, starting small businesses that are not just located in a community, but are part of its very fabric. Tri-C begets the mom-and-pop shop on the corner. On the following pages, readers will meet five former Tri-C students who started small businesses that aim to become integral parts of their communities.




adiah Farrell is in her early 40s but has the kind of youthful face that would make any bartender ask for an ID. She lived in New York City and Georgia before finding a home in Shaker Heights. It’s taken her a little longer than some to discover her niche, but she thinks she has finally found it. In June, Farrell opened Olivia Rose Confections in Shaker Heights. She sees it as more than just a place to buy a cake. Once fully developed, it will become Olivia Rose Community Bake Shop, where any aspiring baker can work in a professional kitchen and sell his or her goods. In 2013, soon after graduating from Tri-C’s Hospitality Management program with an associate degree in culinary arts, Farrell was selling baked goods at the Cleveland Flea, a hip, outdoor flea market. “I really thought I could have a baked goods stand, just bringing out fresh baked goods,” Farrell said. “That’s one of my things, too. I bake fresh. I was always baking the night before. Any of my kids could tell you it was always crazed.” It wasn’t long before the crazed nights and lugging her stuff back and forth became too much. It was time to open her own shop. Farrell used resources like Cleveland Culinary Launch & Kitchen, Bad Girl Ventures and the Economic Community Development Institute and discovered that start-up funds were available through the city of Shaker Heights. It sounded Goldilocks, just right. But she would soon discover the joys of bureaucracy. A grease trap required by city code cost her $1,700, consuming her marketing budget. Her plan to open May 1 evaporated. “I felt completely overwhelmed,” she said. However, she did open in mid-June and quickly discovered that she could not both bake and run her business. So, she decided to morph the space into a community bakery. She already has people bringing in their baked goods to sell. “It’s definitely part of the community,” she said. Farrell enrolled in Tri-C’s culinary arts program after losing a customer service job with Sprint. She has always aspired to do something creative.

“There is an art form to baking. There was some kind of peace to it, too. In the baking classes, you are very quiet and focused,” she said. She said that her coursework at Tri-C exceeded her expectations. “I think I lucked out with the instructors I got,” Farrell said. “They had experience being in the industry that opened you up to possibilities . . . We studied accounting, costing and purchasing, and all that definitely helps. “But actually running a business? I’ll be honest with you: I don’t think you learn it until you’re in it.” Olivia Rose Confections won a Cleveland Magazine Best of Cleveland 2015 award. In addition to running her business, Farrell is the mother of two daughters, Grace Olivia and Victory Rose, the namesakes of her bakery. How difficult is it to launch a new business and be a single mom? “I don’t think it’s difficult. It’s just hard work.”


Theresa Gorski: VISION YOGA


heresa Gorski did a lot of soul searching before deciding to open a yoga studio in Cleveland’s Ohio City. The Westlake native lived abroad for a few years, and she came back with some distinctly European values. “I knew that I wanted to be in a walkable neighborhood that had access to all of the things that I really enjoyed,” she said. So, when she returned to the United States in 2009, she settled in Ohio City, which was just beginning its renaissance. She found a tight-knit, progressive community there and wanted to be a part of it. In 2011, she opened Vision Yoga in a second-floor space on West 25th Street. She has two massage rooms and a studio, and she employs three managers in addition to contracting with 16 instructors and massage therapists. “We might have a CFO (doing yoga) here next to a barista or a musician next to a non-profit manager. I feel like we are serving the doers in Cleveland, so it makes it especially fun to be a part of that energy.” Gorski is looking to expand her business, and she decided that she could use some help. She heard about the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses program, administered through Tri-C, and decided to enroll. The program provides small business owners


with specialized training designed to help them grow their businesses. She completed the program in April and came away with a business plan and some valuable lessons. “I learned pretty quickly what my greatest weaknesses and strengths were, and sometimes half of it is just knowing and accepting that I am not great at everything,” Gorski, 36, said. She also developed an unexpected network. She still meets quarterly with 33 of her fellow 10,000 Small Businesses graduates. Gorski said Vision Yoga specializes in therapeutic yoga and facilitating lifestyle changes. “We are doing good work here. Some of the people we help are headed to surgery or worse. They have dramatic lifestyle shifts in their stress and happiness levels. We have created an amazing community here, so people I see on the street are giving me hugs or waving across the way. We are really a part of this community. To me, that is the best joy, to be present and to be part of it,” she said. Gorski is on the Ohio City Merchants Association board, started a non-profit and participates in block clubs. “It’s a great opportunity to be a part of the greater conversation in Cleveland,” she said. “We’re all in this together.”

Kevin Montgomery: STANDBY ROLLING


unning a recording studio comes with a unique set of challenges. Just ask Kevin Montgomery, who graduated from Tri-C in 2013 with an associate degree in recording arts and technology (R.A.T.). “The hardest thing I come up against is that I meet a lot of extremely talented people who don’t have any money,” he said. So, Montgomery, who owns Standby Rolling recording studio, does what he is able do. He doesn’t work for free, but in order to help struggling musicians, he will work with them on rates. It’s his way of supporting the music community in Greater Cleveland. “I have lived in Miami, New York in Brooklyn and in Cleveland most of my life,” Montgomery said. “I have never seen the kind of talent that is readily available here in Cleveland. There is an immense level of talent here, and the level of musicianship is extremely high.” Montgomery, 46, runs his studio from his home in Cleveland Heights. In addition to recording, his business manages sound at venues like the Cleveland Museum of Art. He recently helped Wilbert’s Food & Music install a new sound system. “I’m very busy. The thing that keeps me busy is a lot of variation,” Montgomery said. “One day I might be doing an orchestra gig at the museum, and the next day I am doing a full-on, funky, gospel, R&B thing.” Montgomery has recorded Cleveland vocalist Eric Nolan, Walt Williams of The O’Jays and DownBeat magazine award-winner Reginald Bones (“a Cleveland gem,” said Montgomery), among many others. But the artist he wants to talk about is Stephen Spencer, an actor and graduate student at Case Western Reserve University. He met Spencer while running sound for the Cleveland Play House. Spencer plays ukulele. Montgomery heard him on the instrument and simply had to get him in the studio. “We fleshed out some of his songs here, and they came out spectacularly. I am really very proud of it,” he said. Montgomery spent years working in sales for Village Voice Media. In 2009, he decided to pursue an MBA at Case. He was told he needed to enroll in classes somewhere and earn all A’s before he would be admitted to the graduate program. With a lifelong interest in music, he decided he could ace a few courses in the R.A.T. program at Tri-C and then return to Case to pursue his MBA. That didn’t happen.

“When I walked into this program, I really didn’t know what I was getting into. But then, all of a sudden, it became apparent. The teachers are a bunch of really professional people who’ve had experience doing this, and some of them have had studios or have been in the business. Some of them are really good teachers, and they have knowledge they can share with me. But together, it made me see I could actually turn this into something fruitful,” Montgomery said. “I realized that I can follow this path and I will get to do something that I really love.”




n Aug. 16, Hone Barber College in Maple Heights gave free haircuts to students going back to school. Owner Angela Rice passed out school supplies to the kids, too. “We did 180-plus haircuts. It was a mess in here,” Rice said. It was part of an event called I Am My Brother’s Keeper, and it was all in a day’s work for Rice. Rice, who studied business at Tri-C in the early ‘90s, has been in the barber college business since she and a partner opened Lake Erie Barber College in 1996. She launched Hone Barber College in 2012 and relocated to the current location on Dunham Road earlier this year. “The real estate courses (at Tri-C) alone showed me how to negotiate on this building,” she said. In that building, visitors will find a bright décor, classrooms, 19 barber chairs and the kind of small talk and sense of community for which barber shops are known. But there is more going on than meets the eye. “You have a lot of struggling young men coming in here, predominantly Hispanic and African American, where the doors have been closed in their face everywhere else and this is almost the last stop. This is almost a sanctuary,” she said. “Students can come in at any time just to have a place to be and just sit.” Hone Barber College employs two staff members with an additional three on call.


Students require about 10 months to complete the program. Completion means passing the state certification test. Leading up to that, students cover five focus areas: theory and book work; services other than cutting hair (coloring, beard design and eyebrow arching, for example); demonstrating skills and knowledge to instructors; business aspects like accounting, business-plan writing and budgeting; and passing a replica test. “Cutting hair is an art,” Rice said. “You can’t really teach anybody; you can only bring it out of them. Entrepreneurship is what we basically focus on.” Rice points out that, though she is a barber, she almost never cuts hair. “You can take the skill as far as you want to if you have the business skills to do it,” she said. “Some graduates choose to open their own shops, and some are not interested in the responsibility and accompanying stresses of owning a business, so they choose to take a chair in an established shop,” Rice said. When you own your own shop, “One decision doesn’t just affect you. You’re affecting the barber and everybody connected: family, their friends, children. Everybody is going to be affected by that decision.” Rice said the biggest challenge students face is a common one: Life can get complicated. “I spend a lot of time offering encouragement. Sometimes I have to be mom, dad, sister and brother.”



im Sorge has watched a generation come up through his small business. As owner of Swings ‘N Things in Olmsted Township, he is now hiring teens for the summer who are the kids of former summer employees. That will happen when you enlist 100 high school and college students full time for the season; it’s a sizeable chunk of the community. Most of the teens come back summer after summer, and even as adults, a few will return to volunteer for special events. “The kids have to be reliable. Parents, in most cases, love us because we teach them responsibility,” Sorge, 67, said. His top two year-round employees have been there for 25 years. “I’ve got a great staff. They’re loyal. They’re honest. They enjoy the industry,” Sorge said. Swings ‘N Things is a family entertainment complex comprising a game room, laser attraction, soft-play area, miniature golf, paintball, batting cages, bumper boats, go carts and concessions including

ice cream made on site using wife Joanne’s recipes. Many in Northeast Ohio have celebrated a birthday or attended some other function there. The business started as a modest batting range in 1982. “We built the first batting range in the eastern half of the United States,” Sorge said. Over time, Sorge has expanded and expanded while similar complexes in the area have come and gone. He has served as a board member to the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions and earned a Meritorious Service Award from the organization, an award that counts Walt Disney among its winners. “I’m happy about that,” Sorge said. “I think I helped a lot of people in the industry. This is the only thing I do, quite frankly. We are not absentee owners. We are here every day.” It’s an interesting comment from a man who probably shouldn’t be there in the first place. Sorge earned his Associate of Arts degree from Tri-C in 1969. He enrolled at the College after a go at Kent State University, where after one quarter he held a 1.06 GPA. “My dad said, ‘If you think I am paying for this, you’re nuts,’” Sorge said. He thought about signing up for the military, but this was in the middle of the Vietnam War. At the urging of family and friends, he enrolled at the then-nascent Tri-C Western Campus in Parma. He was an exceptional athlete who played baseball and basketball and remembered practicing hoops in the leaky boiler room of Crile Hospital. “Tri-C just changed my life, immediately changed my life, because I had people telling me, ‘You can do this.’ The faculty and the professors were unbelievable,” he said. Sorge became a dean’s list student and found a new ambition: to teach and coach, both of which he would do after earning a bachelor’s from Cleveland State University and a master’s from University of Akron. Tri-C hired him to coach its baseball team and teach courses in current health issues and physical education. He coached for 10 years and taught for 15. He was instrumental in building Ron Mottl Field at Western Campus and was the first athlete inducted to the Tri-C hall of fame. “I’m a walking testimonial for Tri-C,” Sorge said. But he has found satisfaction in his version 2.0, too. “I enjoy most being downstairs and talking to the kids. That’s what I loved about teaching at Tri-C. It keeps me feeling younger. I don’t feel like an old fart.”


PEDAL POWER Team-building exercise works in cycles



for team building is to get results,” said Meghan Bilardo, director of organizational effectiveness at Corporate College. “The Bike for a Tyke program accomplishes that in two ways: It energizes employees to create a more dynamic workplace and it brings happiness to a child in the community.” At Magnus, employees spent a June afternoon assembling and customizing the bikes at the company’s Hardy Industrial Technologies plant in Painesville Township. The event was the finale to a leadership training program completed through Corporate College. The project brought together staff from the company’s Chagrin Falls corporate office and Hardy production facility to work side by side in the plant’s warehouse amidst stacks of dairy cow feed. Magnus companies develop and manufacture natural animal feed ingredients and innovative chemicals derived from plant and animal fats. Participating employees ranged from bookkeepers and office managers to maintenance crew members and plant workers. Each offered a different

skillset that — when combined with the strengths of the others in the group — made the project a success, said Scott Forster, co-owner of Magnus. “You see what can be accomplished through a collaborative effort,” Forster said. And the good it can do. The bikes were presented to four Painesville-area children between the ages of 8 and 12 soon after the co-workers finished tightening bolts on the two-wheelers. The gifts were arranged through the Lake County Juvenile Diabetes Walk Family. The smiles on the children sparkled even more than the bikes. Forster said watching the kids and their families react after seeing the gifts for the first time represented the most worthwhile moments in the project. “That will touch you,” he said. To schedule a Bike for a Tyke session through Corporate College or for more information on the program, call 216-987-0234 or go to www. Corporate College also offers a Culinary Challenge team-building program.


hris Knight slightly turned the screw on the finicky gear shift and took a deep breath. Time to test his work. “This has to be right,” Knight said as he began rotating the pedals on the mountain bike. The back wheel spun into motion and Knight clicked through the gears. The chain transferred smoothly from first gear to second, second to third, and then on through fourth and fifth and sixth. Perfect. Knight broke into a satisfied smile. “The kid,” he said, “is going to love this.” As part of the new Bike for a Tyke program offered through Corporate College at Cuyahoga Community College, Knight and 14 others at Magnus International Group built and donated bicycles to four Lake County children. Bike for a Tyke unites a company’s employees in a team-building project that grants a wish to a member of the community. The hands-on experience requires co-workers to communicate, solve problems and use leadership skills in order to meet a goodwill goal. “One of the most powerful reasons

CUYAHOGA COMMUNITY COLLEGE Analysis of the Economic Impact and Return on Investment of Education October 2015

Dear Friends Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) has been a vibrant player in Northeast Ohio’s education sector for more than five decades, welcoming more than 900,000 students as Ohio’s first and largest public community college. While long acknowledged as an outstanding option for high-quality, affordable education, Cuyahoga Community College is also a vital economic driver in the region. Approximately 50,000 students attend Tri-C annually. More than 85 percent of Tri-C graduates live and work here; in the past year, more than 1,000 local employers hired Tri-C graduates or trained their workers through the College. Offering up-to-date education, skill enhancement and workforce training translates into a highly competitive workforce, low unemployment and a fiscally healthy community.

Approximately 50,000 students attend Tri-C annually. More than 85 percent of Tri-C

We are pleased to share the outcomes noted in this economic impact report and believe it tells the story of Tri-C and its positive impact on students and the community in a compelling and inspirational way. The College’s work is supported by the citizens of Cuyahoga County, and this report shows that their belief in its mission has measurable benefits.

graduates live and work here; in the past year, more than 1,000 local employers hired

Alex Johnson, Ph.D. President Cuyahoga Community College

Tri-C graduates or trained their workers through the College. Income Created by Tri-C

$228.1 Million College Operational Spending

$0.86 Million Student Spending

$885.3 Million Alumni/Workforce Spending

$1.1 Billion Total impact

Jobs Created by Tri-C Job equivalents represent full- and part-time jobs that would not have occurred in the region without the College. College Operations Spending Impact = 4,185 job equivalents Student Spending Impact = 26 job equivalents


will earn an additional $3.70 for every dollar they spend over their lifetime.



Alumni/Workforce impact = 16,140 job equivalents Overall, added income created by Tri-C and its students = 20,350 job equivalents

20,350 job equivalents created Impact on Community


Million in in College net payroll and expenses

Impact of the College’s Operational Spending • Tri-C employed 3,784 full-time and part-time employees in FY 2013-14. Payroll amounted to $170.4 MILLION, much of which was spent in Cuyahoga County to purchase groceries, clothing and other household goods and services. The College spent another $137.4 MILLION to support day-to-day operations.


Million to the economy

Impact of Student Spending • The expenditures of students who relocated to the region during the analysis year added approximately:


Million in accumulated contribution of former students in the workforce

Impact of Alumni/Workforce • Over the years, students have studied at Tri-C and entered or re-entered the workforce with newly acquired skills. Today, thousands of these former students are employed in Cuyahoga County. Tri-C and its students added:


Billion in income to Cuyahoga County’s economy


will gain $10.50 for every dollar spent over a lifetime in state income and savings.

will receive $3.40 for every dollar spent over a lifetime in additional tax revenue and public sector savings.

Return on Investment to Students, the Community and Taxpayers Student perspective • Tri-C’s students paid a total of $82.8 MILLION to cover the cost of tuition, fees, books and supplies. • In return for money invested in the College, students will receive $1.5 BILLION (2015 dollars) in increased earnings over their working lives. This translates to a return of $3.70 in higher future income for every $1 that students invest in their education. The average annual return for students is 14.8 percent. • The average associate degree holder from Tri-C will see an increase in earnings of $11,700 each year compared to someone with a high school diploma or equivalent.

Community perspective • Ohio will receive $6.9 BILLION (2015 dollars) in added state income over the course of the students’ working lives. The community will also benefit from $110 MILLION in social savings related to lower unemployment and increased health and well-being across the state. • For every dollar spent on a Tri-C education, the community will receive a cumulative value of $10.50 in benefits for as long as the 2014 student population at Tri-C remains active in the state workforce.

Taxpayer perspective • In 2014, state and local taxpayers in Ohio paid $159.3 MILLION to support Tri-C operations. The net added tax revenue stemming from students’ higher lifetime incomes and the increase output of businesses amounts to $517.9 MILLION (2015 dollars) in benefits to taxpayers. Savings to the public sector add another $29.6 MILLION in benefits due to a reduced demand for government-funded services in Ohio. Analysis performed by Economic Modeling Specialists Intl (EMSI) reflecting Fiscal Year (FY) 2013-2014.

Cuyahoga Community College’s Economic Impact and Return on Investment Report demonstrates that Tri-C creates value from multiple perspectives. Local businesses benefit from consumer spending and from the availability of qualified, trained workers. Students raise their lifetime income potential. The community benefits from a prosperous economy. Finally, state and local taxpayers will see increased tax receipts across the state and a reduced demand for government-supported services.

Michael Culp

NAMED BOARD STUDENT SCHOLAR U.S. Air Force veteran finds academic success after personal struggles


he summer of 2012 brought little warmth for Michael Culp. His father died that June following a grueling battle with lung cancer that Culp witnessed from a bedside seat. Weeks after the funeral, Culp lost the job he held for more than a decade. The events staggered the U.S. Air Force veteran. He felt emotionally overwhelmed, mentally drained and lost. “I didn’t know what to do,” he said. “I didn’t know where to go.” So he turned to Cuyahoga Community College. After two stellar years at the College, Culp will serve as Tri-C’s Board Student Scholar this academic year. He was sworn in at the Sept. 24 meeting of the Cuyahoga Community College Board of Trustees. “Tri-C changed me as a person,” said Culp, 47, who lives with his 12-year-old son in Cleveland’s Broadway neighborhood. “It helped me to be my best and to develop into the person I am today.” Culp grew up in Shaker Heights as the youngest of four siblings. He graduated from Shaker Heights High School in 1986 and — convinced he wasn’t “smart enough” to be college material — enlisted in the Air Force. He served four years while specializing in electronics. Culp spent two of those years at a base in Panama working on a transmitter that broadcasts military radio signals throughout Central America. After an honorable discharge in 1990, Culp jumped from job to job to job. He eventually settled in with a Northeast Ohio beverage distributor.

Michael Culp

He started out loading trucks overnight and advanced to a sales position. Then came the summer of 2012, his father’s death and his sudden unemployment. Culp turned to the federal Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) for a fresh start. VRAP connected him to Tri-C’s Veterans Upward Bound program as he prepared to enter college. “Upward Bound gave me the confidence to succeed,” Culp said. It shows. Culp has compiled a 3.94 GPA and has become a regular on the dean’s list since beginning classes at Tri-C Metropolitan Campus in fall 2013. He also earned state certification as a chemical dependency counselor assistant through classes at the College. Culp is on track to graduate this spring with an Associate of Applied Science in human services. Afterward,

he plans to transfer to a four-year school to pursue a bachelor’s degree in social work. His career goal is to help people dealing with drug and alcohol addiction. Currently, Culp works with the homeless at the Bishop William M. Cosgrove Center in Cleveland. He also volunteers at Open Door Baptist Church in Cleveland’s Fairfax neighborhood. Look for Culp to bring his passion for helping others to his role as Board Student Scholar, where he’ll serve as a bridge between Tri-C students and the board. He plans to visit all College campuses to talk to his fellow students. “Being involved enriches you as a person,” Culp said. “I’m here to help students just like I was helped when I needed it most.” TRI-C TIMES FALL 2015 19

A New Era in Humanities Education BEGINS AT TRI-C Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center dedicated at Eastern Campus


uyahoga Community College ushered in a new era in humanities education with the Sept. 29 dedication of the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center. The ceremony launched a center which will provide unique liberal arts learning environment with programming designed to cultivate civically responsible citizens who will lead Northeast Ohio toward a stronger future. In March, the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation and the Mandel Supporting Foundations awarded $10 million to the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation to establish the center. “The generous gift that has created the Mandel Humanities Center underscores the importance of the liberal arts and community engagement,” said Alex Johnson, president of Tri-C. “A new generation of Tri-C students will continue its education and enter our workforce with this strong foundation, and our entire community will benefit.” The gift — the largest in the history of the College — established a permanent endowment to support the center and its initiatives, including a scholars academy for high-performing students. It also created a chair/dean of humanities to lead the center. Tri-C selected Lauren Onkey for the position, and she started her work with the College in September. She is charged with shaping the center into a national model for engagement in the humanities. Onkey most recently served as the vice president of education and public programs at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland. Tri-C Honors Fellowship recipient, Julia Watson, expressed appreciation to Mr. Mandel on behalf


Morton Mandel, chair, Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation in front of the donor wall in the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center.

of all Tri-C students. Director of Tri-C’s Creative Arts Preparatory Program, Emanuela Friscioni and student violinist, Hery Rivera, performed a special musical selection in Mr. Mandel’s honor. The dedication ceremony celebrated the rich legacy of Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel and expressed appreciation for their generous support of the College. The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center is located on Tri-C’s Eastern Campus in Highland Hills in the former Liberal Arts and Performing Arts building.

This special donor wall in the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Humanities Center recognizes the generous support of Mr. Morton Mandel, the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation and the Mandel Supporting Foundations.

Rick Chiricosta, Chair, Cuyahoga Community College Foundation; Morton Mandel, Chair, Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation; David W. Whitehead, Chair, Cuyahoga Community College Board of Trustees; Dr. Alex Johnson, President, Cuyahoga Community College


Gloria Moosmann with Tri-C’s four presidents at the College’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2013. From left are Charles Chapman, Nolen Ellison, Moosmann, Jerry Sue Thornton and Alex Johnson.

Building A Foundation of Support for Tri-C Gloria Moosmann shares a history with the College she has helped sustain


uyahoga Community College has long been known as the place where futures begin, which has held true for nearly 85,000 graduates throughout the years. Gloria Moosmann, whose future began as a Tri-C student, has served as vice president, Development and Tri-C Foundation for the last 15 of her 45-plus year career with the College. The dynamic fundraiser embodies a passion for enabling student success at Tri-C. She works tirelessly to build pathways for access to, and completion of education by increasing the availability of scholarships for student success and building community engagement. Moosmann graduated from West Tech High School with a full scholarship to Western Reserve College (today known as Case Western Reserve University).


Her plans of college changed when her father passed away suddenly and her family needed her to work full time to help provide support. Coincidentally, the community’s college, Tri-C, had recently opened its doors so she enrolled in evening classes in the former Brownell Junior High building as a part-time student. It didn’t take long before the energetic Moosmann found herself working as a student assistant for the College’s first president, Dr. Charles Chapman. Since those days, she has had a front row seat to the College’s growth and expansion as it responded to serve the needs of the community. From answering the phone call that ultimately led to the acquisition of land for the Western Campus, to the first stock gift which established the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation in 1973, Moosmann’s career has come full circle.

Gloria Moosmann with Tim Russert at the 2005 Presidential Scholarship Luncheon

Gloria Moosmann and President Emeritus Dr. Jerry Sue Thornton on the set with 2002 Tri-C Foundation Presidential Scholarship Luncheon Speaker Oprah Winfrey

“I believe with all my heart in the College’s mission of investing in students and offering opportunity to those in this community. Tri-C truly is ‘where futures begin.’” Tri-C Foundation 2006 Spring Benefit: Lou and Valerie Joseph, event hosts; Dr. Jerry Sue Thornton; Gloria Moosmann; Michelle Neumeyer, scholarship recipient; Daniel Marcus and Shelley Roth.

She holds the distinction of serving all four of the College’s presidents. She has served Tri-C in a number of capacities, including Finance and Risk Management and Human Resources as Director of Benefits. In 1999, she assumed the leadership of the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation. At the helm of the Foundation, Moosmann established the first major gifts campaign, raising $20 million in the inaugural effort in the early 2000s. During her tenure as vice president of development and Tri-C Foundation, she has secured over $227 million in funding for programs and scholarships. With the generous support of donors, she has grown the endowment from $4.6 million to over $55 million, with more than 150 scholarship funds to support student success. During the last academic year alone, the Foundation awarded over $1.7 million in scholarships to 1,900 students. Just a decade ago, scholarship awards totaled $400,000. Her leadership of the Foundation’s Presidential Scholarship Luncheon has brought national attention to the College. The list of past speakers reads like a who’s who in the world: Oprah Winfrey. General Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.). Dr. Condoleezza Rice. The Right Honorable Tony Blair. President Clinton. President Bush. And this year, basketball legend, Earvin “Magic” Johnson. Throughout the years, the luncheon has

raised more than $16 million benefiting Tri-C student scholarships. As Moosmann worked aggressively to ensure that Tri-C remains accessible to members of our community seeking quality education, she also built one of the best boards in Cleveland, with the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation being led by a board of 60 directors including business and community leaders from across the industries who are committed to enhancing quality education. Tri-C Foundation Chairperson Rick Chiricosta, Chairman, President & CEO of Medical Mutual of Ohio, remarked, “I think it’s not an exaggeration to say that Gloria really and truly is a one-of-a-kind. She is a very special person and I am proud to have worked with her over the years.” Knowing first-hand the challenges of Tri-C students working while attending college, Moosmann continues to treasure each and every student story she hears and enjoys sharing them with others. As she prepares to transition from her role as vice president to continue to serve the Foundation in a half-time capacity, she reflects fondly on her years with Tri-C. “Cuyahoga Community College has made a significant impact on my life as well as on those of millions of others. It has been a privilege working to continue Tri-C’s legacy to benefit students for generations to come,” Moosmann said. “Like so many of our donors, I truly believe in investing in our students for the good of our community. Tri-C truly is where futures begin.” TRI-C TIMES FALL 2015 23

Alumnus Robert Maria is Driven to Succeed A career change late in life is made easier with two degrees from Tri-C


t the age of 55, Robert Maria left his laborintensive profession as a truck driver and mover knowing that he would need a college degree to compete in the current job market. After an extensive array of aptitude tests, his vocational guidance counselor determined that a purchasing and supply management degree would be the best fit for him and that Cuyahoga Community College was the perfect place to get one. “She was right on both counts,” Maria said. Maria started classes at the Western Campus in January 2011 and graduated summa cum laude with a 4.0 GPA in December 2012. He earned Associate of Applied Business degrees in purchasing and supply management and business management and was a member of Phi Theta Kappa. “Tri-C really energized my life. I re-acquired a third for learning that had been missing and will continue for the rest of my life,” said Maria. “The classroom experience really helped me by working in a diverse, technology-driven atmosphere where I learned from the students as well as the professors.” He now works as an auditor at the Regional Income Tax Agency. “I probably use a little bit of knowledge from every course that I took. I have a diverse area of


Robert Maria

responsibility that allows me to tap into much of my learning,” he said. As a supporter of the Foundation’s scholarship funds, Maria recognizes the value of his education. Looking

back at his experience at the College, he said, “It is said that it is never too late to get an education. Tri-C proved that to me and helped me change my life for the better.”

2015 Tri-C Foundation Hispanic Scholarship Recipients



he Cuyahoga Community College Foundation is grateful for the generous support of AT&T for scholarships for Hispanic students. As the College continues to increase and enhance efforts to expedite student progress and completion, scholarship support is critical to removing financial barriers to student success. “AT&T’s continued partnership will help more Hispanic students connect to higher education, complete their degrees and credentials and contribute to the economic vitality of our region,” said Alex Johnson, Ph.D., president of Tri-C. Enrollment of Hispanic students at Tri-C has increased more than 30 percent since 2010.




uyahoga Community College has received a $195,000 grant from The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to help train veterans and their families for jobs as commercial bus and truck drivers. The funding is provided through FMCSA’s Commercial Motor Vehicle - Operator Safety Training (CMV-OST) grant program, which was established in 2005 to help reduce crashes involving trucks and buses on U.S. roadways. Tri-C opened its Truck Driving Academy in 2008 and expects to graduate more than 140 students this academic year.



he John P. Murphy Foundation is providing funding to support an initiative allowing students to gain experience working with a major regional media production. The Armchair Quarterbacks initiative is a partnership between the College’s Television and Video Services program and Classic Teleproductions. Students are engaged in an array of creative and production activities that culminate in a weekly professional broadcast, allowing students to experience the entire production process. Innovative experiences like this initiative and many other programs enhance the student experience and provide pathways for student success.




n aura of excitement filled the ballroom of the Renaissance Cleveland hotel on October 8, 2015, where more than 1,100 guests gathered for the Cuyahoga Community College Foundation’s 2015 Presidential Scholarship Luncheon, presented by Fifth Third Bank. Greeted by cheers from guests swirling Cavs rally towels, keynote speaker Earvin “Magic” Johnson brought the crowd to its feet for an engaging Q&A session moderated by John Michael, Radio Network Play by Play Announcer for the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Cavs provided pre-season Cavs tickets, rally towels, tee shirts, mascots and activities for a fun-filled luncheon. Special thanks to Tri-C Foundation Director, Kerry Bubolz. Johnson, who parlayed his success on the basketball court to the boardroom, becoming a successful entrepreneur, philanthropist and motivational speaker, shared his story, beginning with his family life and childhood continuing through sports, business, leadership and philanthropy. “I believe in what you are doing,” he said, indicating he was warmed by the cause of the Tri-C Foundation, whose mission parallels that of the Magic Johnson Foundation. He recognized that a dollar goes a long


Dr. Alex Johnson, president, Cuyahoga Community College; David W. Whitehead, chair, Cuyahoga Community College Board of Trustees; keynote speaker Earvin “Magic” Johnson; Gloria Moosmann, vice president of development & Tri-C Foundation; Rick Chiricosta, chair, Tri-C Foundation and Jerry Kelsheimer, regional president, Fifth Third Bank, Northeastern Ohio, presenting sponsor of the 2015 Tri-C Foundation Presidential Scholarship Luncheon.

way at Tri-C and underscored the importance of assisting individuals achieve their educational goals. He addressed the importance of providing educational support through scholarships, noting that Cuyahoga Community College and the Tri-C Foundation do a wonderful job in this capacity. Long known for his commitment to working with corporations and partners to bring jobs and high quality products and services to underserved communities, he told the crowd, “The private sector and the public sector have to come together and say, ‘Hey, we’re going to start with this area first, these three blocks and we are going to put workforce housing and create jobs by bringing new development.” Magic Johnson discussed his success as an entrepreneur, initial investments in Starbucks, his purchase of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the development of his cinema complex. He stressed recognition of the purchasing power of urban communities and the impact that can develop from customizing retail products to meet the needs of the surrounding urban community. At the end of his presentation, Johnson surprised guests by pulling out a package of floor seats to the Cavs versus Lakers game in California next spring, which he auctioned off to benefit the Foundation’s

Earvin “Magic” Johnson with Tri-C President, Dr. Alex Johnson at the 2015 Tri-C Foundation Presidential Scholarship Luncheon.

scholarship funds, along with personal appearances at guestsponsored events. Johnson’s philanthropic generosity generated Keynote speaker Earvin “Magic” Johnson with moderator, an additional $95,000, bringing the John Michael, radio play by play announcer, Cleveland Cavaliers, total raised at the 2015 Presidential at the 2015 Tri-C Foundation Presidential Scholarship Luncheon. Scholarship Luncheon to $1.4 million benefiting Tri-C students through scholarships created through the Presidential scholarships awarded by the Tri-C Foundation. Scholarship Luncheon provide critically needed funds “Our supporters help change lives by contributing for those who might otherwise be unable to afford a toward scholarships that provide access to higher college education. We are so honored and appreciative education,” said Rick Chiricosta, chairperson of the to have had Magic Johnson join us this year. He is an Tri-C Foundation. “This luncheon opens doors and inspiration to all students at Cuyahoga Community makes dreams possible.” College. We are grateful for his generosity.” In thanking Magic for his time and engaging This marked the fifth consecutive year for Fifth dialogue, Dr. Alex Johnson, president of Cuyahoga Third Bank’s support as presenting sponsor of the Community College, announced the establishment Presidential Scholarship Luncheon. Jerry Kelsheimer, of the Earvin “Magic” Johnson Scholarship Fund Regional President, Fifth Third Bank, Northeastern of the Tri-C Foundation to benefit deserving and Ohio, told the crowd, “At Fifth Third Bank, we sincerely underserved youth from our community, noting that believe that the investment in student scholarships is Mr. Johnson’s visit will have a lasting impact on the an investment in the future of our community.” futures of Tri-C students. The Cuyahoga Community College Foundation “Our generous donors have made it possible for appreciates the support of all of its generous donors for Tri-C to change the lives of thousands of students showing they are ALL IN in supporting scholarships for over the years,” said Gloria Moosmann, vice president student success at Cuyahoga Community College. of development and the Tri-C Foundation. “The TRI-C TIMES FALL 2015 27

‘POSTMORTAL’ proves to be grist for discussion Author turned tough times into a publishing success


ough times have a way of paying off, as author Drew Magary can attest. Magary had just been laid off from his advertising job. He had some freelance writing jobs on tap, but he also had a young family to support. So he took to the keyboard and began the darkly funny, dystopian novel that would become The Postmortal. And then: “My agent hated it,” Magary said. He finished the book, found an agent who liked it and, like many a writer before him, became a collector of rejection letters from publishers. But in 2011, Penguin published The Postmortal. Though it did not become a New York Times best-seller, something interesting started to happen. Colleges began launching common reading programs to foster campus-wide conversations, and they started selecting The Postmortal as their book. Sales helped Magary — a columnist and writer for GQ and Deadspin — draw publishing support for his second novel, due out next year. Now Magary hits the road from time to time to speak about his book. “It’s been amusing,” Magary said. As part of the lineup of events for TriC’s Common Reading program, Magary visited Tri-C’s four campuses in October. In an interview with Tri-C Times, he said it made sense to him that the novel has done well for such projects. It begins with protagonist John Farrell, a young lawyer who gets his hands on a newly developed “cure” for aging. Those


Drew Magary

“It’s a book about the world, and so it’s applicable to pretty much everyone.” who take it can still die, but not by the inevitable afflictions of old age. We learn about John through emails and blog posts, including one early in the novel where he makes known one of the many ironies of the cure: I’m due to get the cure finished off

on Monday. I should be all excited at the prospect of beginning the rest of my indefinitely elongated life, but I’ve found myself increasingly impatient as I grow closer. All I’ve done in the past few days is calculate the population figures and think about death — mine

Throw the

BOOK AT ‘EM and anyone else’s. I don’t enjoy thinking about death, which is one of the reasons I wanted the cure in the first place. Now, I seem to be obsessing over it. As time passes, and more people take the cure, a host of unintended consequences grow and multiply. “I think the book is good at fostering ethics discussions,” Magary said. “It allows for a lot of possibilities for teachers to talk about the world and society. It’s a book about the world, and so it’s applicable to pretty much everyone.” The world with a cure for aging turns out to be an undesirable place. Still, Magary said he wouldn’t hesitate to take the cure if it really existed. “Only an idiot wouldn’t take it,” he said — though in the next breath he admitted that the choice comes with its perils. Writing a novel about the indefinite postponement of death was his way of coping with the inevitability of it. “The book is structured to be a nightmare, so when you finish, you’re like, ‘Thank goodness I’m going to die,’” Magary said. “This is sort of me working through it.” Magary lives in Maryland with his wife and three children. In Someone Could Get Hurt: A Memoir of 21st Century Parenthood, Magary’s funny and irreverent storytelling voice shines a light on the perils and wonder of having kids. That irreverence might make you wonder whether Magary is the kind of writer who would cock an eyebrow at his book becoming part of any college’s curriculum. Rest assured, he’s glad The Postmortal has found new audiences this way. “To write something and have it be taught in schools is just crazy,” he said. “It’s the sort of thing every writer dreams of. I hope I never take that for granted.”

Common Reading program gets entire College on the same page


ouldn’t it be great if every college student learned to read for pleasure? That’s the kind of dreaming you do if you’re Luke Schlueter, one of the Cuyahoga Community College faculty members who launched the Tri-C Common Reading program this fall. The idea first surfaced about two years ago during a casual discussion between Schlueter and Ann Proudfit, dean of student affairs at Westshore Campus. As the two waited for others to join a conference call, they brainstormed ways to increase student engagement. “I simply love the idea of the whole College — faculty, students and anyone else — joined together reading and talking about a text that was interesting,” said Schlueter, assistant professor of English at Western Campus. By last fall, a committee of faculty members from a variety of disciplines had agreed to participate and started homing in on the book the College would read. They looked for fiction or nonfiction that would be accessible to students at all reading levels and lend itself to activities across a variety of classes, from English to sociology to art. Two finalists emerged. Drew Magary’s The Postmortal, about what happens when science finds a cure for aging, beat out Andy Weir’s novel The Martian, about an astronaut who gets stuck alone on Mars. This fall, about 40 faculty members have worked The Postmortal into their curriculum. Across the campuses, students have taken part in discussion groups, an essay contest and screenings of a 2014 documentary film called The Immortalists, which touches on some of the same themes as Magary’s novel. For information The Postmortal and Common Reading program activities, visit



THE CODE New IT training center aims to fill skills gap


n the United States, more than half a million information technology jobs are unfilled. Many of these are considered “middle-skill” jobs, requiring more than a high school diploma but less than four years of postsecondary training. Workforce experts recognize community colleges as essential to eliminating the middleskills gap — no easy task, but one that Cuyahoga Community College’s newly established Center for Information Technology Training has taken on. Under the leadership of College-wide Dean and Executive Director Monique Wilson, Ph.D., the center aims to increase the number of IT professionals trained for middle-skill careers in Northeast Ohio, preparing them for jobs that provide family-sustaining wages. Middle-skill IT jobs pay an average of $53,000 per year — about 10 percent more than jobs with similar educational requirements. With Cleveland’s poverty and unemployment rates at three times the national average, this represents a major economic opportunity for area residents. “The Center for IT Training is uniquely positioned to leverage our outstanding faculty and a legacy of high-quality education to train the next generation of IT leaders in Northeast Ohio,” said Wilson. Wilson came to Tri-C in 2014 from the Hospital Corporation of America, where she was responsible for strategic planning prioritization. With more than two decades of experience in IT, Wilson has gained a reputation as an innovator and visionary by leading large scale projects at Fortune 500 companies such as ACS (Xerox) and Bridgestone Corp.


“The Center for IT Training is uniquely positioned to leverage our outstanding faculty and a legacy of highquality education to train the next generation of IT leaders in Northeast Ohio.”

“I’m both honored and humbled to have been asked to lead the IT center. This role allows me to meld my experiences as an IT student, faculty member, industry professional and administrator to help our faculty and staff best serve our students,” said Wilson. The goal of the IT center is to unite and leverage the strengths of existing academic offerings and workforce development training to optimize career and educational opportunities for Tri-C students. By converting unemployed and underemployed individuals into skilled professionals, the center will provide qualified workers to close the skills gap and fill the high demand for new talent in Northeast Ohio’s IT industry. Wilson and her team have identified five areas of high growth using a combination of higher education research, industry predictions, IT certification trends and market research. These areas are: cyber security, cloud computing and virtualization, analytics and big data, mobile development and agile development and management. The IT center provides streamlined pathways toward careers in these

Monique Wilson

areas and others while being more responsive to the needs of both industry and community partners. New certificate programs in data analytics, cloud computing and data center management were rolled out in fall 2015 along with a graduate certificate in cyber security analytics. Eventually, each of Tri-C’s four campuses will have a strategic focus for IT training and education with distinct training opportunities offered in labs equipped as certified Cisco Academies. President Alex Johnson recently named The Center for IT Training one of Tri-C’s Centers of Excellence, citing the strength of its faculty and programs as well as the significant impact the center will have on the local economy. “The Center of Excellence designation is significant,” said Wilson. “Dr. Johnson’s advocacy for IT training is based on a belief in Tri-C’s ability to educate our students and prepare them with the skills and competencies necessary to fill high-demand jobs and earn familysustaining wages.”


Meet Me


Nawadir Nayyef


awadir Nayyef came to the United States from Iraq in 2012. She is studying accounting at Westshore Campus, where she is a Student Ambassador. She is 35 and has a daughter. TRI-C TIMES: What made you come to the United States? NAWADIR NAYYEF: I left my motherland and came to the United States looking for a better future. War destroyed the infrastructure, the culture and people. I wanted my daughter to get a good education and have a safer future. TCT: Why did you decide to enroll at Tri-C? Why did you become a Student Ambassador? NN: I enrolled at Tri-C because I needed to improve my language skills, also to get a degree from the United States to get a better job. I worked as an accountant in the University of Technology in Baghdad for eight years, so I love to work in this environment with students and faculty members. I wanted to be involved with students’ lives, and the Student Ambassador


position is the perfect one for that. You can’t imagine how blessed I feel when I help a student and they thank me for that. I love my new position at Tri-C and I’m glad they gave me this chance. TCT: What has proven most challenging about attending Tri-C? NN: The most challenging thing was the language. When I came to the United States in 2012, I spoke no English, or very little. I challenged myself to learn and speak it. I attended Tri-C in 2013 for ESL (English as a second language). The College placed me in level one. I finished the ESL classes with a high GPA. I was on the dean’s list two times, and I also have two stories published in the ESL Voices. Now, I’m studying accounting hoping to get my certificates by 2016 so I can pursue a master’s in business. TCT: What is your favorite and least favorite thing about the U.S.? NN: The thing I like most about the United States is the school system. It is way different than the one in my country. I like how they involve the families in the school events. However, the thing that most upsets me is that

most Americans think Iraq is one of the undeveloped countries. This idea is totally wrong. Iraq is one of the oldest nations in this universe. Its civilization is 4,000 years old. It will sound like a joke, but we do have TVs, high buildings, malls, factories, and we don’t use the camel as transportation. TCT: What do you miss most about Iraq? NN: It is really a hassle to tell you about what I miss about my country. Let me just ask you a question. You lived in a place for 30 years of your life; you had your first degree, first job, first love and first child there; then you are forced to leave it. Can you imagine what you are going to miss the most? However, the thing I miss about Iraq is my family. I hope they get the chance to come here or to go anywhere safer than my homeland. To keep up with Tri-C students and graduates, check out Meet Me @ Tri-C, a periodic feature on the Tri-C Trending blog at

#mytricstory Why are you studying filmmaking? “All of my friends are so passionate in their own crafts. I have a friend who’s a rapper and a friend who’s a poet. I wanted to find my own craft. I love movies, so I thought that video production would give me that passion, and now I have my own craft.” — Dion Pride, digital video filmmaking, Metropolitan Campus

To see more examples of #mytricstory, like Tri-C on Facebook @ TRI-C TIMES FALL 2015 31

NOV. 13 Gabriel Bolkosky violin 7 p.m., Metro Campus Mainstage Theatre $15 in advance, $20 at the door

APRIL 1 “Collage: Music and Poetry” The Cavani String Quartet and Mwatabu Okantah

PERFORMING ARTS SERIES | 2015-2016 For tickets, logon to or call 216-987-4444

7:30 p.m., Eastern Campus The Simon and Rose Mandel Theatre $15 in advance; $20 at the door

APRIL 14 Columbus Jazz Orchestra: The Music of Steely Dan and Sting 7:30 p.m., Hudson High School $20 in advance; $25 at the door

MAY 5 One World Tribe 7:30 p.m., MOCA Cleveland $15 in advance $20 at the door

15-0734 CA Tri-C Presents 7x4.75 Tri-C Times Ad.indd 1


700 Carnegie Ave. Cleveland, Ohio 44115

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