Monday, January 30, 2017

Gates Foundation Profiles Rio President Bustamante

snapshot from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Postsecondary Success web site. Header reads: CHRIS BUSTAMANTE: MAINTAIN THE MOMENTUM AT A COLLEGE KNOWN FOR INNOVATION.

This Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Postsecondary Success article by Jeffrey J. Selingo profiles Rio Salado College President Chris Bustamante and provides an overview of the strategies the college employs to help increase student access and success—including a Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation grant-funded program to help 5,000 students increase degree completion rates.

photo of Dr. Bustamante
“It’s in our culture that if there is a better way of doing something, let’s do it,” Bustamante said. “Too many institutions wait too long—years, in some cases—for experiments to be completed, for multiple layers of approval, and by then the momentum for the idea is lost.”

Read the article now

Friday, January 27, 2017

It Pays to Apply for MCCCDF Scholarships!

Image of MCCCDF Scholars and MCCDF logo

Take advantage of hundreds of scholarships available through the Maricopa Community Colleges FoundationFall 2017 applications will be accepted Feb. 1 – March 10, 2017.

Hundreds of scholarships, one application!  Scholarship applications for Fall 2017 open from  February 1, 2017 through March 10, 2017. The Maricopa County Community Colleges Foundation has simplified and streamlined the scholarship application process by using the Academic Works Scholarship System. District-wide and campus specific scholarships are entered into the Academic Works system, and student profiles are compared to existing scholarships for eligibility.  Students create one profile and apply for hundreds of scholarships!  For additional help or questions, please email us at  Steps to apply: 1) Please visit  2) Sign in using your MEID and college password in the upper right hand corner. Please read the instructions before sign-ing in and review the FAQ page. (If you have trouble signing into the system, please use the link “Trouble signing in?” in the lower left hand corner)  3) Review the instructions above the application.  4) Fill out the entire general application. Use the Save and keep Editing button often while completing the application. Select Finish and continue to Submit your application.  5) We encourage you to apply for as many scholarships as you are eligible for by clicking the “Opportunity” button and the “Apply” button for those scholarships you believe you are qualified for.  Scholarship Tips:  Be mindful of grammar, spelling and provide details in your essay questions using at least seven sentences.  Take the time to completely explain your circumstances in the essay questions—please be yourself.  Check your email for updates  2419 W 14th Street, Tempe, AZ 85281 Phone 480-731-4080
There are hundreds of scholarship opportunities for students-- and a streamlined process that only requires one general application!

Check out this accompanying information sheet for valuable tips on what to consider when completing your application.

The web site for the application, is

The Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization designated by the Maricopa County Community College District to receive and manage gifts on behalf of its ten colleges, two skill centers and multiple satellite centers. The Foundation actively seeks contributions from a variety of public and private sources including individuals, corporations and other foundations. It acts as a trustee for donations to assure that gifts are distributed in the manner specified by the donor.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Got Teeth? Get Dental Cleaning Services at Rio

cute baby smiling at a dental assistant.

The Rio Salado Dental Clinic provides quality preventive dental hygiene services at discounted rates for Maricopa Community Colleges students, employees and the public while giving students practical educational experience. 

parent review x-rays with dental hygiene student.Comprehensive services include blood pressure screening, oral exam, X-rays, cleaning and polishing, fluoride application, gum disease screening, oral hygiene instruction and other selected services.

All new patients must have a screening visit prior to a dental hygiene appointment.

Fees for a basic cleanings: Dental hygiene appointments for adults can range from $35 - $75. If it’s time for the kiddos to get their cleanings, those start at just $25.

Appointments are available Wednesdays from 12:30-4 p.m. and Fridays from 8-11:30 a.m.
Please call 480-377-4100 to schedule an appointment.  Visit for additional details.

poster for dental clinic.  Student smiling at camera.  Text: I want to be a dental assistant (one day crossed out) now!  600+online classes, $84 a credit, Creidt for Prior Learning-  get crdite for what you already know.  Illustrations of dental images.

Interested in a dental career? Visit this web page to learn about Rio Salado's Dental programs.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Explore 8-14 Week Class Options from Rio Salado, CGCC & MCCCD!

All 10 Maricopa Community Colleges offer classes that you can finish in just 8 to 14 weeks. 

Your life is busy, so we make it easy to choose from day, evening, and online classes. Why wait?

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Free Orientation: Learn How to Be a Teacher!


Join Rio Salado's Teacher Education team for a free orientation session -- in-person or online-- to learn how to become a teacher!

You'll learn about:
  • Rio Salado College's Teacher Preparation program requirements 
  • Program expectations and support 
  • Registration process and requirements 
  • Answers to any related questions you may have 

Rio Salado's Post Baccalaureate programs are designed for people who have earned a bachelor’s degree in any field from an accredited university and would like to become a teacher.

In-person orientation sessions are from 6-8 p.m. and will be held at the Rio Salado Tempe Headquarters & the Communiversity at Queen Creek.  
  • Jan. 23
  • Feb. 6 
  • Feb. 27
  • March 27
  • April 24
  • May 15
Register now.

or call 480-517-8140 for the latest details about orientation sessions.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Learning the Language of Success

Photo of medical professional smiling while holding documents

Rio Salado College student Miriam Ponsock has turned her language skills and compassion into a career.

Ponsock is a wife and mother of two who speaks Spanish and has a passion for helping people. When she was recently contemplating her career options, these two skills merged into one clear direction. “I care about people, and figured if I can get training in something I enjoy, and do it as a career, that is a good thing,” said Ponsock.

She promptly enrolled in Rio Salado College’s Spanish for Medical Interpretation classes.

The two-class sequence was created to give students the opportunity to gain valuable career skills while helping fill voids in the local healthcare community.

“Communication is key, especially in emergency room situations,” said Angela Felix, Rio Salado College’s faculty chair for languages. “There is an increase in the number of people needing quality medical care. Receiving the correct information in a language they understand is critical.”

Photo of person in blue srubs speaking with smiling elderly person with arm brace. Background: doctor in an office and doctor walking

Rio Salado partnered with the Phoenix Children’s Hospital to develop the course content, which was accredited by the Certification Commission for Healthcare Interpreters in 2014.

“This training is perfect for students who are bilingual but don’t know what career path to follow,” Felix said. “The most important thing to know is that students don’t have to have a medical background to take these classes. We will teach them the terminology and how to manage interpretive encounters.”
Offering the classes online allows students to enjoy the convenience of learning on their schedule.

“I like the online experience,” said Ponsock. “My class is user-friendly and flexible. I can log in at any time and contact my instructor, check my grades and complete my assignments.”

However, it has not all been smooth sailing for Ponsock. Her husband is fighting a life-threatening disease and may require an organ transplant.

“I was trying to get a job, going to school, visiting the hospital for my husband’s health emergencies and attending the needs of my children,” Ponsock said. “There were moments when I felt burdened and had difficulty focusing.”

“But there were also moments of relief where I would give it my all,” Ponsock said. “I believe that with divine grace I was able to push through. I’m grateful that Rio Salado gave me the flexibility to study, work and care for my family.”

Ponsock’s perseverance paid off. After completing the first Spanish for Medical Interpretation class, she got a job with a company that specializes in interpreting and translation services.

“The work I did for my class and my teacher’s constructive feedback were a huge stepping stone for me to obtain this job,” Ponsock said. “The class has helped me grow and has boosted my confidence to a level that I had never imagined.”

Ponsock’s instructor was Dr. Elida Testai, a former science journalist in Argentina who believes that interpretation goes far beyond word choice.
Nurse holding pill bottle while elderly patient looks at the bottle

“Anybody can check words in a dictionary,” Testai said. “Interpreters transmit a message, a concept or an idea while respecting the tone and intention of the speaker in context. It’s about conveying a deep level of meaning.”

For more information about Rio Salado’s Spanish for Medical Interpretation classes visit Enroll now -- classes start Mondays!

Contributed by Mira Radovich, Communications Coordinator. 

Friday, January 13, 2017

New Paralegal Classes to Enhance Your Skillsets

Photo of the Supreme Courthouse

Rio Salado has added three new electives to its online paralegal program. The classes include environmental law, immigration law, and legal investigation

A class in e-discovery is coming soon. These classes will offer students more specialized course content that is socially relevant and can help established paralegals meet continuing legal education requirements.

Image of Angela Kwan
“The new class options provide students with areas of interest to explore and may help them focus their career paths,” said Angela Kwan, Rio Salado’s faculty chair for Administration of Justice Studies and Paralegal.

Rio’s curriculum prepares students for the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) certification exam.

Classes focus on fundamental skills such as legal research, writing and analysis, IRAC writing, Bluebook legal citation and Westlaw training.

Image of a courtroom

In addition to the substantive coursework, Rio Salado’s program offers professional development opportunities through partnerships with private law firms, governmental agencies, non-profit organizations and corporate businesses.

image of a law library
Qualified candidates have the opportunity to intern and apply their legal education in a legal setting. For more details, visit

#Paralegal #LegalCareer #LegalTech #eDiscovery #ImmigrationLaw #EnvironmentalLaw #Career #Success

Monday, January 9, 2017

Communiversity at QC Closed Jan. 16 in Honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day -

photo of MLK

Rio Salado College and the Maricopa Community Colleges will be closed Monday, Jan. 16 in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

We will resume regular business hours on Tuesday, Jan. 17.

We encourage you to take pause during this national holiday to reflect on Dr. King's contributions to the Civil Rights Movement-- and how you can serve as a steward of this cause.
Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable. Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Need Help With Your New Year's Resolutions?

Green background with white text "RESOLUTIONS FOR 2017 1. 2. 3. 4. 5." with image of brunette woman looking up at text.

If you’re like many students, you start the semester with a grand goal of earning a straight A's. 

By the time midterms roll around, you’re telling yourself that it won’t be THAT bad if you skip a study session to meet up with the gang for Taco Tuesday. Before you know it, you end up settling for a B+. Why settle? You can have your tacos and a 4.0 too!

These six recommendations from Forbes contributor, Molly Cain provide a sure fire way to help you stick to your goals. 
"6 Ways To Achieve Any Goal. Molly Cain Contributor by Molly Cain" with icons of email, facebook, twitter, linkedin, and google plus

1. Look at it. Molly says that creating a vision board can be a fun and helpful way to visualize your goal, or if you are more tech savvy, try envisioning your goal on Pinterest. When you can envision the reality that you want to achieve, it is possible to realize the changes that are necessary to get there. 

2. Tell people. When you tell your friends and family, you become accountable for your actions. If you leave people in the dark about your goals, there is no one to cheer you on when you skip happy hour to study or go to the gym instead. There is also no one to remind you of your goals other than yourself, which can be difficult even for the most disciplined (especially when going to bed early sounds way better than taking notes and reading). 

3. Break it up. Setting smaller goals can help you feel like you are making accomplishments along the way, not to mention that setting a large goal can be overwhelming. You wouldn’t expect to learn French overnight, would you? First, you would start with words and pronunciations, then fragments and phrases, then sentences, and then you would know how to speak French. 

4. Set a date. When you set a date, there is a sense of pressure to achieve your goal on time. Plus, every day that goes by is an opportunity to get closer to reaching that goal. 

5. Be realistic. Maybe your goal is to lose the holiday weight that you said you wouldn’t gain, but did (because cookies are really, really good). It’s possible that you may be able to transform your body by summer or next winter, but you won’t be losing 200 pounds by the end of January. Setting realistic timelines is important so that you don’t feel completely defeated.

6. Commit to yourself.
 You are the one putting in the hours – the blood, sweat, and tears to reach your goal and this can only happen when you commit. Don’t settle for “close enough.” You deserve to reach your goals this year!

If you have serious academic goals this semester like graduating in May, completing a certificate, taking on a difficult class load, or getting straight A’s, contact Academic Advisement to create a strategy that you can stick to! If you have personal and career goals to achieve this year, contact our Counseling team for advice.

#NewYearsResolution #NewYearNewMe #Goals #Goals2017 #GoalsFor2K17

@MCCCD SIS Now Available!

Image of a Maricopa Community College campus.  Text: Student Information System (SIS)

The Maricopa Community Colleges Student Information System is now available for enrollment and all systems are functioning as normal. 

We appreciate your patience and understanding. 

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Apply for Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars Program!

Photo of Tiffany Thornhill - Glendale Community College student holding documents under a walkway with plants and shrubbery in background

Meet Tiffany Thornhill, a 35-year-old single mom of five who decided to go back to school to pursue AAS coursework in substance abuse counseling at Glendale Community College and benefited greatly from the Nina Mason Pulliam Legacy Scholars Program. Learn more about her story and the program in The Maricopan.

"Becoming a Nina Scholar has changed my life. I honestly don't know where I would be without this scholarship,” says Thornhill. “I started my academic journey with small dreams and now I believe my possibilities are endless.”

The Nina Scholars Program covers full tuition, fees and books, and provides each student with an academic advisor mentor. It also includes a $2,750 annual living allowance.

Learn about program benefits and eligibility requirements here or apply now!

#scholarships #success #highered

@MCCCD SIS Offline Today Until Further Notice

Image of notice about SIS outage.  See text in blog.

The Maricopa Community Colleges Student Information System is experiencing technical difficulties and has temporarily been taken offline. 

Enrollment services are not available in person at our colleges, online, or by phone. 

During this delay, be assured that we will protect your personal information, financial aid awards, your current class enrollments, and your ability to start your classes on time.

We are working around the clock to resolve the issue and thank you for your continued patience.

Please visit for the latest updates.