Training Inc. and ECC Police Academy Receive Grants

Training, Inc. and the Essex County College Police Academy (ECCPA) received a boost in funding by the Prudential Foundation and the State of New Jersey, respectively.

Training, Inc. has received a $75,000 award from the Prudential Foundation. The award will be issued to allow Training, Inc. to continue to provide a variety of job training services, at no cost to individual participants. The programs are for people seeking initial entry, reentry or upward mobility in the workforce. Over the past 26 years, Training, Inc. has attained a 75 percent completion rate and an 80 percent job placement rate.

ECCPA received state money in the amount of $13,428 for the purchase of equipment used in law officer training.  The Academy receives the money from the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice and Police Training Commission’s Law Enforcement Officers Training and Equipment fund three times a year.


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Three Agreements Signed with Four-Year Institutions

The College approved significant agreements with three four-year institutions at its February board meeting.

First, a Dual Admission Program agreement was penned with New Jersey City University (NJCU) that allows students of ECC’s Associate degree Nursing program to be admitted into NJCU’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing upon graduation from Essex. More and more health care facilities are hiring nursing staff with bachelor degrees and requiring existing staff to continue their education beyond an Associate. The dual admission agreement also will broaden opportunities for expanded clinical experiences within the profession.

Second, the Board approved a College Alliance Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Phoenix. Under the agreement, Phoenix will accept ECC lower division general education coursework as the designation granted by Essex. Also, Phoenix will make for-credit transfer contributions and non-credit workforce development contributions to ECC students. In addition, Phoenix will contribute to ECC faculty and staff development through a 5 percent tuition reduction and a full Prior Learning Assessment reduction to Essex employees who enter into a bachelor level or higher program.

Finally, the College ratified an MOU with the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers. The center will evaluate the development of new Associate degree programs the College will initiate through the $2.7 million Department of Labor grant received last year. As part of the grant’s evaluation component, Heldrich will serve as the office evaluator of the project known as NAIL0IT (Newark Area Industry Linked Information Technology).

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Movin’ on Up: Promotions


Essex County College staff received promotions at the Board of Trustees meeting held on February 25.  Promotions were approved for:

  • Sandra Mosquera – General Ledger Accountant, Accounting
  • Barbara Valentine – Disbursement Officer, Bursar

The Board of Trustees also approved a change in title for Ms. Judy Ortiz to Junior Collections Officer in the Bursar’s Office.  Congratulations to all.


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Academic Affairs Announces Realignment


In January 2014, there was a re-alignment in our Office of Academic Affairs that enhances the College’s ability to provide the best service possible to our students while expecting to improve our recruitment, retention, and ultimately our graduation rate.  Two new academic support deans are now in place to complement the academic infrastructure that President Gale E. Gibson announced in August 2013, specifically:

  • Dr. Elvira Vieira, Associate Dean of our West Essex campus, now reports to the Office of Academic Affairs. This move is a better alignment as ECC continues to increase the offerings and Associate degree options available at the West Caldwell campus.
  • Dr. Leigh Bello-de Castro has been promoted to Associate Dean of Online and Learning Resource Technologies. She has oversight for Online Learning, Evening & Weekend Degree Programs, the MLK Library and Media Production & Technology (MPT).

The realignment also includes a restructuring within the former Area of Student Success, now known as the Office of Student Services, which now reports directly to Academic Affairs.  Dr. Susan Mulligan leads the office as the Acting Executive Dean of Student Services.  Other transitions include:

  • Ms. Zewdnesh Kassa is now Registrar/Assistant Dean of Student Affairs & Enrollment.  Her area includes both Enrollment Services Express and the Office of Recruitment. By connecting the two offices, we will have a more robust admission process.
  • Ms. Marva Mack has transitioned to Assistant Dean of Advisement & Retention, a new area within Student Services. The area has oversight for the advisors, retention initiatives and transfer.
  • Ms. Patricia Slade has been promoted to Associate Dean of Student Life & Development. She will continue to oversee Student Life and the scholarship office as well as the Student Development Center.

Ms. Mildred Cofer continues to serve as Director of Financial Aid.



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President Gibson Firms Up Executive Leadership Team


Over the last few months, President Gale E. Gibson made appointments to her leadership team, including Dr. Rashidah Hasan, Dr. Susan Mulligan and Mr. Courtney Inniss.

Dr. Rashidah Hasan, is serving as Acting Vice President of Human Resources, Regulatory & Legal Affairs/General Counsel.  In addition to her duties as General Counsel, Dr. Hasan will provide administrative leadership, supervision and coordination of the Human Resources Department.  Dr. Hasan has been with the College since 1999 having served as senior staff attorney; Director of Legal Affairs and General Counsel.  She was also an adjunct professor in the Humanities Division from 1992-1998. Dr. Hasan has a B.A. in History from Bloomfield College and a Juris Doctorate from Seton Hall University School of Law.  She is admitted to practice in the State of New Jersey and the U.S. District Court, and has provided exemplary guidance since joining my leadership team.

Dr. Susan Mulligan serves as Acting Executive Dean of Student Services. Most recently, Dr. Mulligan has served as Executive Dean for Institutional Advancement and worked with me successfully in steering the College toward reaffirmation of our accreditation with Middle States. Dr. Mulligan served as Dean of Students Affairs from 1996 until 2011. Since her arrival at the College in 1976, she worked in various administrative positions in the Department of Student Assessment & Institutional Research, as a counsellor/instructor and as a Professor in the Division of Social Sciences.

Mr. Courtney Inniss was officially appointed as Executive Director – Presidential Initiatives, after serving in an acting capacity since July of 2013. He came to ECC in January of 2013 as Academic Coordinator in the Office of Academic Affairs. He previously served in several academic and administrative roles  at Medgar Evers College of the City University of New York, most recently completing eight years as faculty member in the developmental mathematics education department. Mr. Inniss has held other positions: Director of Immersion Programs (similar to our Summer Bridge and Winter Intersession programs), Director of College Now (a blend of our High School Initiatives and Early College Program offerings) and Senior Academic Advisor, where one of his primary responsibilities was teaching Freshman Seminar courses (our CSS).  Mr. Inniss earned his undergraduate degree in Environmental Science, and a Master of Science in Mathematics Education from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. His efforts inside and outside of the classroom reflect a tireless commitment to students and he will certainly be an asset.

President Gibson’s Cabinet consists of the President, Dr. Edwin Knox, Vice President of Academic Affairs / Chief Academic Officer), Dr. Joyce Wilson Harley (Vice President of Administration & Finance), Dr. Rashidah Hasan (Acting Vice President of Human Resources, Regulatory & Legal Affairs/General Counsel), Dr. Douglas Walcerz (Vice President of Planning, Research & Assessment), Ms. Avril George-Robinson (Comptroller/Chief Financial Officer), Mr. Courtney Inniss (Executive Director of Presidential Initiatives) and Mr. Mohamed Seddiki (Executive Dean of Administrative & Learning Technologies / Chief Information Officer).

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A New Strategy to Recruit ESL Adjuncts


The need for qualified English as a Second Language (ESL) program adjunct faculty members brought together multiple College departments to assess and strategize new methods of searching for qualified candidates.

The Area of Community and Continuing Education partnered with the Dean of Liberal Arts who brought together Human Resources, Bilingual Studies and Marketing and Communications.  The collaborative team discussed the best ways to facilitate the search for adjuncts at the main campus and the three Newark extension centers.

The discussion resulted in a new communications campaign with a new advertisement and e-blast featuring photos from all four sites, including the extension centers.  The communications will be sent to higher education sites, colleges which have master’s programs in ESL, and other job seeking sites.

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There’s a New Doctor in the House


Nursing Associate Professor Marlene Dey earned her doctorate from the Rutgers College of Nursing in New Brunswick after successfully defending her dissertation on December 6. The dissertation focused on hospitalized elders and perceptions of nursing care. Dr. Dey has also served as chair of the Nursing Department and administrator of the RN program.

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Movin’ On Up: Promotions

Tenure Promotions

Essex County College faculty received tenure and administrators received promotions at the December 17 Board of Trustees meeting. Congratulations to all.

Tenure was granted to:

  • Carlos Castillo – Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Division of Mathematics & Physics;
  • Brooke Orosz – Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Division of Mathematics & Physics;
  • Mary Ellen Carpenter – Instructor of Radiography, Division of Nursing & Allied Health; and
  • Thomas Donofrio – Instructor of Physical Therapist Assistant, Division of Nursing & Allied Health.

The Board of Trustees approved the following promotions:

  • Leigh Bello-De Castro – Associate Dean, Online and Learning Resource Technologies;
  • Kelly Coley – Assistant to the Dean, Business, Industry & Government;
  • June Persaud – Executive Assistant to the Vice President for Academic Affairs; and
  • Patricia Slade – Associate Dean, Student Life and Development.

Congratulations to our colleagues on their advancement here at ECC.

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Contracts Approved to Upgrade College Computers

A series of contracts for computer upgrades was approved at the December meeting of ECC’s Board of Trustees.  The package of seven maintenance agreements for Oracle America, Inc. of Dallas is for $39,610.03 and all begin in 2014.

Individual contracts approved include software, hardware and maintenance for the Banner System, the Enterprise Content Management system, Sun ZFS storage system, the Martin Luther King Jr. Library, and work the College does for the County of Essex.

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New Business Courses Being Launched


ECC’s Business Division is keeping pace with industry trends by launching three new courses and refocusing of an existing course in the Spring 2014 Semester.  The new experimental courses and proposed majors include Introduction to Entrepreneurship (Entrepreneurship Option); Introduction to Hip Hop Business (Hip Hop Business Studies Option), and Introduction to Public Administration (Public Administrative Option).

“We are testing student interest, as we are hoping to eventually create new majors in these areas,” said Carlos Rivera, Acting Dean of Business, Industry and Government.

The fourth course, Introduction to Finance, signals the revitalization of the College’s Finance Option.  Acting Dean Rivera projects the new majors, pending formal state approval, will be fully developed by the end of the fall 2014 semester.

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