Synchronizing Student Engagement within the First-Year Experience

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Please join the campus-wide collaborative discussion designed for staff and faculty as stakeholders in our students’ first year experience. Our guest facilitators, Dr. Jimmy Howard, University of Oregon and Gena Merliss, Monroe Community College, combine their expertise to lead an interactive work day to conceptualize shared purposes, best practices, our connected roles, and needed action steps to support an engaged first year experience. Breakfast and lunch will be served. 

Co-Sponsors: Office of the Provost, Ithaca Seminar (ICSM), Honors Program, Exploratory Program, Integrative Core Curriculum (ICC), New Student & Transition Programs, Student Learning Outcomes Assessment Committee, Center for Civic Engagement, and the Center for Faculty Excellence 

About our guest facilitators:

Jimmy Howard currently serves as the Assistant Dean of Student for Prevention and Response at the University of Oregon. In this position he leads multiple teams in the areas of sexual violence prevention, substance abuse prevention, sexual violence support services, and crisis response. Jimmy oversees the University of Oregon’s Student Care Team and serves as the Deputy Title IX coordinator for undergraduate students. 
Jimmy earned his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership from Clemson University. His dissertation “Building a Model of Black Women’s Confidence in Campus Sexual Assault Resources: A Critical Race Feminist Quantitative Study” is a quantitative exploration of Black women’s confidence in sexual violence policies on college campuses. His scholarship and publications focus on critical issues of race and gender in higher education, equity in assessment practices, and racializing sexual violence policy and protocol. Jimmy has teaching experience at the college level and is currently an affiliate faculty within the School of Language, Culture and Society at Oregon State University. Jimmy has taught master’s level student affairs courses in research, student development, and law. 

Jimmy also earned his M.Ed. in Counselor Education from Clemson University where he focused his academic work on student development. Jimmy earned his B.A. from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, where he majored in Psychology.

Gena Merliss is Coordinator of Monroe Community College’s Teaching and Creativity Center in Rochester, NY. Gena works with faculty to develop critical reflection in order to improve instruction and student learning. Prior to her current role, Gena taught developmental math and integrated reading and writing to students who did not place into college level coursework. As a faculty member, Gena experimented with many different strategies to help students develop non-cognitive skills and self-awareness within content areas courses. Gena earned a Master’s degree in Education from the University of Pennsylvania. She also holds a Bachelor’s in Biological Anthropology from Swarthmore College.

Tuesday, May 21 at 8:30am to 3:30pm

Campus Center, Clark and Klingenstein

Individuals who would like to request accessibility accommodations should contact We ask that requests be made as soon as possible to ensure they can be met.

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Center for Faculty Excellence

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