Lee summer camps keep kids engaged

Registration is now open for the 2019 Kids at College Summer Camp Program offered by the Center for Workforce and Community Development at Lee College. The Program offers children ages 5 to 17 an opportunity to meet new friends, discover new interests, and create memories of a lifetime.

Lee College encourages parents to register their child(ren) for any of the hands-on, educational, creative, or athletic camps offered in both Baytown and Liberty, TX. Camps will run June-August and include creative arts and crafts, cooking, gaming, sports, technology, special interests, and more.

“The 2019 Kids at College Summer Camp Program is a wonderful opportunity to keep children active and engaged,” said Dr. Angela Oriano, Vice President of Workforce & Community Development. “Each camp is an adventure that offers personal growth for our community’s youth. Our campers walk away with new skills, increased confidence, and more independence that stay with them throughout their lives.”

Parents and guardians can view the complete list of course offerings through the 2019 Summer Camp Guide available online at www.lee.edu/kids or in-office at 909 Decker Drive, Baytown. The Guide provides parents with all the information they need to decide on a summer camp including descriptions, camp dates/times, locations, and pricing. Camps vary in dates, start/end times, and prices to allow parents to find a camp that fits their schedule and budget, along with their child’s interest.

New this year to the Baytown location includes Extended Care — a supervised childcare program for students enrolled in a morning and/or afternoon Kids at College Summer Camp. Extended Care is available Mon.-Fri., June 3-Aug.2, for the low cost of $25 per week or $175 for the entire summer (excluding the week of July 1-5, 2019). Parents can take advantage of child drop-off 8-9 a.m., supervised lunch 12-1 p.m. (child provides own lunch), and child pick-up 4-5 p.m.

In addition, the Center for Workforce and Community Development will offer Rebel Date Night June 22 and July 20. Parents may drop off and pick up their children (ages 5+) anytime between 5-10 p.m. for just $26 per child. Students will enjoy a fun evening of movies, games, and crafts while parents enjoy their own fun night out! Registration is required.

For more information or to register your child for a summer camp, visit the Kids at College website at www.lee.edu/kids or call 281.425.6311.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 15 school systems. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Great Plains Honors Council Recognizes Outstanding Lee College Honors Students

IMPACT Early College High School senior and Lee College Honors Program graduate Maria Gelves has won the prestigious Dennis Boe Award for a paper she wrote for the Lee College honors course, The Human Condition, taught by Jerry Hamby and Dr. Georgeann Ward. A Marxist critique of Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale,” Gelves’ paper is titled “Manifesting a ‘Biological Destiny’: Handmaids as ‘Sacred’ Instruments of Production in Gilead’s Industrial Theocracy.”

The Boe Award is determined by the Great Plains Honors Council in a highly competitive, blind judging of outstanding scholarly writing from collegiate honors programs in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas.

“Students learn so much from revising their work for competition and adapting their ideas for live audiences. Academic conferences and competitions like the Boe Award raise the stakes for student work and help them achieve clarity and a strong sense of purpose with their ideas,” Dr. Ward explained.

Because Gelves completed her Associate Degree in December, she entered the Boe competition for students who had earned 60+ hours of college credit, making her competition quite advanced.

In addition to winning a cash award and a plaque, Gelves will present her paper in a special session at the Great Plains Honors Council Conference at the University of Texas at Tyler in April.

Joining Gelves at the Great Plains Conference, several other Honors Program students will present papers that they wrote for the Human Condition: Marleah Downes, Dinah Lemonier, Amy Waltz-Reasonover, Ryan Lara, Noe Sanchez and Lindsey Sanford. Lara, Sanchez, and Sanford are all, like Gelves, IMPACT ECHS students.

Human Condition instructor Jerry Hamby added, “Maria is one of those students who demonstrate ever more sophisticated levels of intellectual curiosity, pushing themselves with every new assignment. She has a natural talent for writing, but, more importantly, she knows how to work for her success. Earning the Boe Award is the payoff.”

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Students teaching students

Sterling High School juniors Yasmeen Washington and Krislynn Salazar learn about the negative effects of marijuana from Lee College nursing students Leonel Aramburo Jr. and Ashlyn Scheller.
Sterling High School juniors Yasmeen Washington and Krislynn Salazar learn about the negative effects of marijuana from Lee College nursing students Leonel Aramburo Jr. and Ashlyn Scheller.

Lee College nursing students polished their one-on-one teaching skills recently as they shared their knowledge with students from the Ross S. Sterling High School Health Science Academy.

Janice Rogers, a member of the Lee College nursing faculty, said, “They asked us to provide educational sources and references to topics and issues that affect teenagers. We have anything from good eating to hand-washing to vaping to sun protection to car safety to suicide and the effects that marijuana has on the body — negative effects.”

The learning for the day went beyond just the information high school students gained about the specific topics being addressed.

Sterling High School students share the experience of child delivery in the Lee College simulation lab.
Sterling High School students share the experience of child delivery in the Lee College simulation lab.

The high school students in the Health Science Academy are those who want to pursue health-related careers — some plan to become nurses and others want to be doctors or enter one of the many other professions in the growing career field.

For them, it was a chance to see the next step in their own education, whether they attend Lee College or another college or university.

For the Lee College students, it was a chance to practice the kind of teaching skills that nurses experience in their work.

“In nursing we do a lot of teaching,” Rogers said. “They had to develop a pre-test and a post-test. They have to evaluate their own learning.

Sterling High School teacher Paula Schmidt (back to camera) shows some of her students the simulation lab in the Lee College nursing building, where full-size, equipped hospital rooms containing lifelike mannequins give students the opportunity to practice their skills in a realistic environment.
Sterling High School teacher Paula Schmidt (back to camera) shows some of her students the simulation lab in the Lee College nursing building, where full-size, equipped hospital rooms containing lifelike mannequins give students the opportunity to practice their skills in a realistic environment.

“It helps them to be a more well-rounded nurse since they had to learn how to teach and evaluate and present.”

In fact, the teacher who was with the Sterling High School students gained some of her teaching skills right at Lee College.

Paula Schmidt, an instructor in the Health Science Academy, came through the Lee College nursing program before going on to get her bachelor’s degree. She has also taught at the college.

“My students are just looking at the healthcare profession and what do they want to do,” she said. At the event, “They are actually getting to look at things that at school, at the college level, that they would be doing.”

In addition to the interactive education displays, the high school students also got a tour of some of the Lee College simulation rooms — full-scale hospital rooms where students can practice their skills on mannequins especially designed for teaching medical treatments.

Lee College nursing students Jennifer Hernandez and Mike Garza share sun safety information with Sterling High School juniors Jose Marquez, Canaan Hanson and Carol Davis.
Lee College nursing students Jennifer Hernandez and Mike Garza share sun safety information with Sterling High School juniors Jose Marquez, Canaan Hanson and Carol Davis.

As a particular highlight, a few of the students delivered a “baby,” in the maternity simulation room as the others watched the process. Even though both mother and child were plastic simulations, the students were then able to critique the delivery and learn more than a textbook or video could provide.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Lee earns honor for excellence in student success

Achieving the Dream logoAchieving the Dream Awards “Leader College of Distinction”

Achieving the Dream announced that Lee College has earned Leader College of Distinction status for achieving higher student outcomes and narrowing equity gaps.

“The metrics ATD established for Leader College of Distinction are meant to encourage colleges to sustain aggressive efforts that result in far greater student success and equity,” said Dr. Karen A. Stout, president and CEO of Achieving the Dream. “The honor recognizes network colleges that have stayed focused on the change process and seen real improvements in student achievement across the institution.”

ATD created the Leader College of Distinction award in 2018.

Leader College of Distinction showed improvement on three student outcome metrics, including at least one lagging indicator such as completion. In addition, they showed narrower performance discrepancies in at least two metrics between disaggregated groups, such as gender, race/ethnicity, or socioeconomic status. The metrics are: (a) completion of gateway math and/or English in Year 1, (b) persistence from Year 1 to Year 2 (fall-to-fall retention), (c) courses attempted/completed with a C- or higher grade within one year of initial enrollment; (d) completion of a certificate or degree within four years of initial enrollment; and ( e ) transfer to a four-year institution and achievement of a baccalaureate degree within six years of initial enrollment.

Leader Colleges of Distinction will have their own identity as part of the ATD Network, including a new logo. Leader Colleges of Distinction also will receive priority to participate in ATD’s innovation initiatives. They will be asked to present and facilitate more sessions at ATD events and institutes and asked to serve as mentor colleges.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Recent debaters join staff of area state rep

Diamond and Lyrock pose for a photoFormer Lee College students and Mendoza Debate Society alumni Kyle Diamond and Josh Lyrock have accepted professional positions as Legislative Analysts for Texas State Representative Mayes Middleton (HD23). Diamond and Lyrock, pictured here at the start of the 86th Texas Legislative Session on Jan. 9, will be assisting Rep. Middleton on a variety of issues including education, criminal justice reform, law enforcement, and various matters of concern for much of the Lee College Service Area in Texas District 23/Chambers County.

Diamond, a 2018 graduate in Social Science, was a two-time IPDA Varsity Debate National Champion (2016, 2018) and two time IPDA Team Division Debate National Champion (2016, 2017), as well as a two-time James Madison Cup Finalist (2016, 2017). Lyrock, a Computer Science major from 2015-2017, was an IPDA Team Division Debate National Champion in 2017 and a James Madison Cup Finalist in 2017.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Debate Wins a Trio of Championships in Baton Rouge

Debate team with awards after Baton Rouge win.Despite taking a partial squad of seven Debaters and one Individual Events competitor, the Mendoza Debate Society at Lee College emerged victorious at the Louisiana State University “Mardi Gras Invitational” as they brought home a dozen awards and honors including the Overall Sweepstakes Community College Championship. Hosted by LSU in Baton Rouge on Feb. 1-3, Lee College Debaters also won Third Place in the Team Debate Sweepstakes against a banner field including Duke University, Texas Southern University, host Louisiana State University, Mississippi State University, and Bossier Parish Community College.

Members of the Mendoza Debate Society brought home individual championships as well, including closing out the JV Debate division with the naming of Aria Giacona and Pamela Johnson being named Junior Varsity Debate Co-Champions. Vanessa Rangel took home the Team Debate Speaking Championship, as she and teammate Ty Young finished as Team Debate Finalists. Young also finished in Fifth Place in Team Debate Speaking.

Lee College Debaters brought home the lion’s share of speaking trophies, with Jaden Houseman being named Third Place in Junior Varsity Debate Speaking; Johnson also won Fourth Place in Junior Varsity Debate Speaking while Giacona finished in Fifth Place in Junior Varsity Debate Speaking. Rangel also finished as a Varsity Debate Quarterfinalist. They were joined in competition by teammates Adam Naiser, Dax Ramgoolam, and Hailegh Wingo.

Debate team with awards following La. Tech eventsPrior to the New Orleans event, the Mendoza Debate Society also won 14 awards and honors at the Southern Forensics Championships at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston Jan. 25-27.

Award for Lee team members included the Overall Sweepstakes Community College Championship. Lee College Debaters also finished as the Debate Sweepstakes Community College Champions against a field of over two dozen top community colleges and universities including University of North Texas, Louisiana State University, University of Central Arkansas, University of Southern Mississippi, Drury University (Missouri), Northeastern State University (Oklahoma), and Jefferson State Community College (Alabama).

Lee College Debaters also found success as individuals with the pair of Vanessa Rangel and Dax Ramgoolam earned their Quarterfinalists awards in Team IPDA Debate. Ramgoolam also finished as an Octofinalist in Varsity IPDA Debate. Pamela Johnson finished in Fifth Place in Extemporaneous Speaking, Top Novice in Extemporaneous Speaking, and as an Octofinalist in Junior Varsity IPDA Debate; she also picked up a Fourth Place award in Junior Varsity IPDA Debate Speaking. Hailegh Wingo brought home a DeSemifinalist award in Extemporaneous Speaking and a Quarterfinalist award in Junior Varsity IPDA Debate. Miguel Lopez finished as a Novice IPDA Debate Octofinalist while Maddie Orozco, in her first tournament ever, won 4th Place in Novice IPDA Debate Speaking and was named a Double Octofinalist award in Novice IPDA Debate. They were joined in competition by Lacey Gulley, Julio Martinez, and Adam Naiser.

Lee College Debaters will return to competition on Feb. 15-17 at the BPCC “Eddy Shell Invitational” in Bossier City. The Mendoza Debate Society is led by Director of Forensics Joe Ganakos and Assistant Debate Coach Christine Courteau. For more information about the Lee College Debate Team, please contact Director of Forensics Joe Ganakos at jganakos@lee.edu or 281.425.6502.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.

Industrial Craft program builds lives as well as industry

KeyesFor James Keyes, 30, applying for the Industrial Craft Training Program through Lee College’s Center for Workforce and Community Development was a significant step toward turning his life around. Born in Channelview, Keyes grew up alongside his older sister and was no stranger to financial challenges. His mother was a single parent who lived paycheck to paycheck to support the family throughout his younger years. “She did everything she could to keep food on the table and teach us right from wrong,” Keyes recalls about his mother, “she always supported me through my rough times. She never turned her back on me.”

Growing up, Keyes remembered both parents working long hours to financially support the family. Unfortunately, this provided Keyes with the chance to develop a troubled path. “While my mom was gone working turnarounds, I wouldn’t stay home,” Keyes admits, “I’d go out with friends and play in the streets.” His father worked as a police officer to support his own wife and step children in addition to helping support Keyes, his sister, and his mother. “I saw him every other weekend and any chance he could,” Keyes said.

By the age of 15, Keyes was introduced to drugs and would battle a drug addiction for years to come. “I dug myself into a hole,” he admitted. Keyes dropped out of high school during his junior year after becoming a father to two sons. “I got a job sacking groceries to provide for my family,” he said. His battle with drug addiction continued to spiral downward and ultimately lead to his arrest. “I believe that moment saved my life,” he said. After being arrested, and finding out that he was about to be a father to a baby girl, Keyes decided it was time to change his life.

Keyes moved from Baytown to Webster after attending a state rehabilitation Program. “I completed the rehabilitation program and never looked back,” he said. “Over the years, I’ve had to hustle. I’ve had to prove myself and dig myself out of this hole.” Keyes started working as an electrical apprentice and was looking to advance his skills in the field when he heard about the Industrial Craft Training Program. “My previous record created some setbacks, but this was a great way to get some more experience and good referrals,” Keyes said.

Just four days before Keyes completed the last class, he was offered a job as a journeyman for JAM Electrical. “The course gave me the skills to get this job and the pay raise has been a significant improvement for my finances. I’m able to support my family and I’m a much better person now,” Keyes said. “I love spending time with my family, and teaching my kids how to play sports. I strive to be a positive influence on my sons and my daughter.”

For the first time this holiday season, Keyes had the opportunity to shower his children with all the gifts on their Christmas lists—something he never had the chance to do before. “I’m proud that I’m going to be around my whole family this Christmas and be praised for everything I’ve accomplished.”

Learn more about the Industrial Craft Training opportunities at www.lee.edu/workforce.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.