Reflections on the Academic Year from Attallah College Leadership
April 30, 2019
Attallah College Dean Margaret Grogan and Associate Dean of Undergraduate Education Michelle Samura share some end-of-the-year reflections from the 2018–2019 academic year, as well as their future hopes for Attallah College.
Reflections from Dr. Margaret Grogan, Dean of Attallah College
As another academic year comes to a close, I’m happy to look back on 2018–2019 and remember so opportunities for our IES students and Chapman family to engage with our larger community, both on and off campus. In Attallah College, we strive to prepare tomorrow’s educators, in the broadest sense of the word. That means bringing transformative figures to campus to share their stories, encouraging students to travel off campus to gain practical experience, and opening up our doors to our entire community – listening, doing, and empowering.
Attallah College was pleased to host several special guests this year. This fall, we welcomed Dolores Huerta, labor leader and civil rights activist who co-founded the United Farm Workers Association with Cesar Chavez. Then in the spring, following an advanced screening of the new Freedom Writers documentary, Erin Gruwell, Carl Cohn, and Freedom Writer Sue Ellen Alpizar shared their dramatic story about the power of education. Both Gruwell and Huerta emphasized the pressing need for the next generation to continue supporting and fighting for underserved communities.
Some of our IES fieldwork courses also gave IES students hands-on experience practicing the different teaching methodologies they learn about in class. Dr. Noah Golden’s IES 412 course “Teaching Writing K-12” works with Yorba Academy of the Arts Middle School to teach journalistic writing, and Dr. Quaylan Allen’s IES 206 class is taking place at Higher Ground Youth & Family Services, a local non-profit organization based in Anaheim that provides mentoring for youth and their families in underserved communities. Both fieldwork courses give IES students practical, site-based experience, while positively impacting the larger Orange County community.
Bringing the Community to Us
Lastly, two annual Attallah special events brought together the best of both worlds as we invited leaders, educators, alumni, parents, and youth here to join the conversation: Our spring Women’s Leadership Forum (March 2) and the Education & Ethnic Studies Summit (April 27). With both events, Attallah students had a chance to help steer the program and facilitate the events. The Ethnic Studies Summit in particular has seen a swell of student participation this year from LEAD, IES, and other student groups. Open community events such as these, that open our doors to the broader community, are what make Chapman strong.
Whether you will be returning to Chapman next fall or are ready to take on your next adventure, may you always remember your Chapman family and seek out many voices and experiences. May you be inspired by what you learned here, in and out of the classroom, and work to make your community stronger for all. And please come back and visit whenever you have the chance.
Dr. Michelle Samura, Associate Dean of Undergraduate Education
As the 2018–2019 academic year draws to an end, I remain deeply grateful for the privilege of being a part of the Attallah College’s undergraduate community. I want to recognize and thank the members of the Attallah College Undergraduate Leadership Council and Council Chairs Jerrica Newkirk, Kristi Kayoda, Sakura Kato, Cala Gin, and Zoe Bonfield, who have generously served and supported our college this past year. I continue to be inspired by the dedication of the Attallah Leadership Council and the ways it continues to enhance the entire Attallah College community. If you are a continuing student, I strongly encourage you to join the council in the next academic year.
Change is inevitable. It’s always occurring―sometimes small, sometimes big. How are you with change? Personally, it’s something with which I wrestle. On the one hand, the uncertainty that often surrounds change can be unsettling. On the other hand, the possibilities that emerge from change are exciting and hope-inducing. Attallah College’s undergraduate education is in a moment of change with simultaneous elements of uncertainty and great possibility.
Several of our undergraduate faculty are experiencing exciting changes. Drs. Jorge and Esmeralda Rodriguez recently welcomed a beautiful baby into the world, Camila Valentina Rodriguez. Dr. Quaylan Allen earned tenure and promotion and has been appointed as Faculty Director of Promising Futures. And Dr. Noah Golden will be transitioning to a position at another university. We will miss him dearly and are deeply grateful for his contributions to the growth and development of the IES and MACI programs. Although Dr. Golden will no longer be in our college, we already are planning ways to continue to work together on our Orange County community partnerships.
Other exciting changes will emerge as a result of Attallah College’s undergraduate education strategic plan. The Attallah College undergraduate education team has spent the past 18 months identifying our strategic goals. We’ve been asking ourselves who and what are we now, what areas do we want to further develop and strengthen, and how will we make this happen. We are close to finalizing a working draft, which articulates our priorities for the next three years, and we look forward to sharing details with you in the fall.
Change is transformational. I am excited about what lies ahead for Attallah College’s undergraduate education. In the midst of transitions, we remain committed to developing and being educators, in a wide range of settings, who change education to change the world.
Excerpt from the Attallah College Undergraduate Student Newsletter.