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COC Thanks Classified Employees

Employees at College of the Canyons were recognized for their contributions to the college at an awards luncheon held Thursday, May 28.  The luncheon was held with the "twist" that board members, administrators and managers served college "classified" employees a catered meal with an American Idol theme.

Classified employees hold support positions at the college.  They are most often the behind-the-scenes people who are responsible for the day-to-day functioning of the college.

This is the thirteenth year that awards were presented to individuals in several categories.  Six awards were presented.

The Employee of the Year award recognizes an individual who has made contributions to the college through service to the campus. The College of the Canyons Employee of the Year was awarded to Sarah Ehrsam who is the college's Athletic Trainer.  Sarah was recognized for going beyond the scope of her job to assist athletes and for truly caring about the success and well-being of students and student-athletes.  She consistently helps those around her succeed and meet their goals. The award consists of a decorative plaque and $300 cash.

The Humanitarian Award went to Nancy Faulconer. This award acknowledges an indispensable contribution to the college and cites community involvement and dedication. Nancy, as administrative assistant in the Allied Health Office, was recognized as a person who really cares about our faculty and our students.  Nancy also has a fabulous reputation as a "go-to" person for fundraising and simply getting things done.  She gets results through compassion, hard work and caring a lot about what she does.  The award consists of a decorative plaque and a $100 cash award.

The New Visions Award recognizes an employee who brings new insight to the job, which improves the college.  A positive attitude and providing an inspiration to other employees are key elements in selecting the award winner. The 2009 New Visions Award winner is John Makevich. John is a member of the Distance Learning staff and has taken online education to a whole new level.  He teaches all of the Blackboard workshops (a computer software program used to deliver online classes) and is called by some of his colleagues on campus, "Mr. Online. He was cited for his enthusiastic, positive and helpful attitude, his skills in teaching about technology and for his conscientious approach to everything he does. He is also a key member of the colleges Classified Senate. His award consists of a plaque and a $100 cash award.

A decorative plaque and a $100 cash award went to Rachael Rodriquez, this

year's winner of the Professional Achievement Award. Rachael works in the Admissions and Records office.  As a part-time employee she completed her psychology degree at California State University, Northridge and when a full-time position opened up in the office, she applied and got the job!  She is persistent and when she sets her sights on a target or a goal, she goes after it!

The Gloria Jackson Service Award was named after a beloved member of the College of the Canyons communication's department staff who died in November of 2006.  Jackson had worked for 25 years at the college's switchboard and mailroom and was noted for her depth and breadth of information, her encyclopedic memory for numbers, her outstanding customer service and her endearing laugh. The award consists of a decorative plaque and a $100 cash award.  This year's winner of the Gloria Jackson Service Award is Wendy Trujillo, administrative assistant to the college's Communications, Marketing and External Relations offices.  Wendy was cited for her enthusiasm, good humor, care in handling incoming emails to the college and performing above and beyond her job description every day.  One of her colleagues wrote, "Wendy doesn't have ‘bad' days, just ‘good' days and ‘great!' days. She is cheery, positive, helpful, witty and kind to every member of the public and the college with whom she comes into contact."

Each year the California School Employee Association (CSEA) presents its Member of the Year Award at this luncheon. This year's winner is Vance Pelland who works in the college's facilities department and has been the union local's Chief Job Steward for the past four years. He was recognized for his dedication to the union and his "great communication skills."  He received a plaque and a $100 cash award.

The awards were presented by members of the college district's executive administration and members of the college's Board of Trustees.