New Employee Spotlight – Brenda Mueller

We’d like to take a moment and recognize our newest employees to Green River. Please take a moment to learn more about them, in their own words.
Mueller, Brenda2
Please tell everyone your new title and a little bit about your professional background.
I am the new Development Specialist in the Foundation office overseeing the scholarship program. Previously, I worked at Charles Wright Academy as the Parent Association and Auction Coordinator and was the Summer Program Coordinator in the International Student Office at Saint Martin’s University. I have also lived overseas in China for two years where I taught ESOL and studied Mandarin.

What drew you to apply to Green River?
I was a community college student myself at TCC and have always loved the environment of higher education.

On the car ride to work, what do you listen to?
I listen to mostly pop music but enjoy the occasional rock or hip hop station as well. I like to flip between five or six different stations while I fight traffic.

What was the very first job you ever had?
I worked as a dishwasher at a weekend retreat camp out in Yelm, where I lived in high school. I was thrilled to get a job at 16 and loved every minute of it.

What about your new position is most exciting for you?
I get to give money away to students! How fun is that?

What is one thing you’d love to accomplish in your first year at Green River?
I would love to see the awareness for Foundation Scholarships to be increased on campus. We have a lot of scholarship money available, and I would love to see as many students as possible applying and receiving funds for school.

What three accomplishments are you most proud of in your life?

  • My two sons, who are 4 and 6 are the light of my life.
  • Additionally, I’m very proud of finishing my BA degree, because I did so after my children were born, and it was very difficult.
  • Finally, getting my first job in higher education at Saint Martin’s University was a very proud moment in my life, because I had finally achieved my professional dream.

If your coworkers were to give you an office nickname, what would that be? Why?
That’s a tough one, but probably something like Ms. Coffee, because I drink a lot of it. LOL.

For Green River’s annual talent show (this doesn’t actually exist), what hidden talent would you showcase for everyone?
Well, I can’t sing or dance for anything, but I do enjoy writing. Maybe a poetry reading of something I wrote?

If G.R.E.E.N. were an acronym for something, what would each letter stand for?
I love it here at Green River so far, and I think the GREEN acronym would stand for some pretty powerful words. Genuine, Riveting, Energetic, Equitable, and Natural beauty. I think all these words represent the Green River campus and people beautifully.

Student Affairs and Success Center Update

Student Affairs construction and remodeling is wrapping up. The directory below will help you familiarize yourself with the layout of the Student Affairs and Success Center (SASC).

As noted below, please direct new and prospective students to the Welcome Desk in the first floor lobby area of the SASC.

Career and Advising Center (ext. 2641) SA-104
Welcome Desk (ext. 6000) SA-120
Running Start (ext. 2674) SA-122
TRiO (ext. 2655) SA-211
Disability Support Services (ext. 2631) SA-210
Veteran’s Lounge (ext. 2277) SA-224
The Current (ext. 2375) *Move date TBD SA-218A
Completion Center (ext. 4959) *Move date TBD SA-105
Assessment and Testing Center (ext. 2650) SA-148
Campus Safety (ext. 3350) – Dispatch staying in current location (AD Building) until Phase 2 SA-156

Per David Larsen, Dean of Enrollment and Completion:

Building maps, signage, and publications are in the process of being updated, so please bear with us as we iron out the wrinkles in the new spaces.

A few items of note:

  • Offices are still settling in… while we’d love to give you all tours, doing so while serving students can be challenging and disruptive. Our plan is to invite the campus community to an open house in the future.

  • The Assessment and Testing Center now has lockers to be used by students for personal belongings while they test. The lockers, while great to have, are not large enough to accommodate every size bag students may have. If possible, students should leave large backpacks and bags in another secure location.

  • In the past, you’ve all been so fantastic referring new/prospective students to the Welcome Center. Please continue to make these referrals to the Welcome Desk, now located in the Student Affairs and Success Center in the first floor lobby area.

  • Special thanks to IT, Facilities, and the Business Office for helping with this much needed renovation and move. You all rock!

Verification of Employment & Letters of Recommendation

Gerrit_Dou_-_Scholar_sharpening_a_quill_penPosted on behalf of Claire Gorenstein, Human Resources

In Human Resources, we often receive questions from employees asking if they are allowed to provide feedback to people outside the college (employers, other colleges, etc.) for students, colleagues or direct reports.  As there has been significant litigation involving reference information and the possibility of personal and college liability, we combed through the multitude of information available and hope you find the following rules of thumb helpful.

Recommendation letters you are asked to write:

  • If you are an employee of our college writing a recommendation letter or email for a Green River student, you MAY use Green River letterhead and/or email.
  • If you are an employee of our college writing a recommendation letter or email for a former employee or colleague (that was not a student of Green River) you MAY NOT use Green River letterhead and/or email.

Verification of employment forms or requests that you receive:

  • If you are an employee of our college, please forward these requests to Human Resources to handle.

We appreciate your cooperation in following these rules of thumb.  If you have specific questions about recommendation letters, do not hesitate to contact our office!

New Employee Spotlight – Barry Robinson

We’d like to take a moment and recognize our newest employees to Green River. Please take a moment to learn more about them, in their own words. Robinson, Barry

Please tell everyone your new title and a little bit about your professional background.
I am the new Dean of Health Sciences and Technology. My background is in clinical research and higher education. I studied the effects of viruses in the body, how the immune system responded to the viruses and how multiple viruses seemed to be coordinating their efforts within the same host. I did my research at various institutions: Eastern Kentucky University, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centers, Johns Hopkins, University of Kentucky and University of Washington. I have a bachelor’s degree from Brescia University, master’s degrees from Eastern Kentucky University and Capella University and a PhD from University of Kentucky.

What drew you to apply to Green River?
Green River had gone through a rough period in the school’s history and I had heard that they were in the process of rebuilding. During this rebuilding process, they wanted to recruit eager, motivating and high spirited individuals to return to where the school was prior to the rough period; while keeping in mind that the focus was on making sure that students had the best opportunity for success. I love sharing knowledge and have a reputation of setting standards that students can reach but they have to meet me half way because I cannot force them to do anything that they do not want to. I was drawn to apply to Green River because I wanted to be a part of the revitalization of this great school and do all I can to assist in getting everyone back to where they were before the rough period.

On the car ride to work, what do you listen to?
This one is easy because I do not listen to anything but my thoughts…SMILES!!!

What was the very first job you ever had?
My first unofficial job was cutting my grandmother’s and her friends’ grass. My very first tax paying job was working for a catholic restaurant called St. Martin’s Afro-German Tearoom as a busser/entertainer/waiter.

What about your new position is most exciting for you?
The most exciting part of my new position is meeting all the wonderful people and getting to know them better; not to mention, learning from everyone. I believe that there is an exchange of knowledge whether we realize it or not…we learn from all those that we encounter. So, Health Sciences and Technology be prepared to teach me all that you can…I am here to learn and help you the best that I can.

What is one thing you’d love to accomplish in your first year at Green River?
The main things that I would love to accomplish within the first year would be to be able to feel more at ease in this position and have gain a strong relationship with the individuals in Health Sciences and Technology. Next, I have set a goal to recognize all the administration, faculty and staff by first name. This will be a great challenge since I am bad with names.

What three accomplishments are you most proud of in your life?
First, my son…second, my continued education…third, having had the opportunity to find love.

If your coworkers were to give you an office nickname, what would that be? Why?
Happy…because I always try to make at least one person smile a day; more is always better but the minimum is one.

For Green River’s annual talent show (this doesn’t actually exist), what hidden talent would you showcase for everyone?
A hidden talent to be showcased at the Annual Green River Talent Show…would be making shadow puppets in a marionette mini-stage. Seriously, I would have to say it would probably be ballroom dancing.

If G.R.E.E.N. were an acronym for something, what would each letter stand for?
G
row continuously
Refresh your mind and thoughts
Explore the world around you
Experience life to the fullest
Never give up on your dreams

New Employee Spotlight – Hedayatullah Qaderi

We’d like to take a moment and recognize our newest employees to Green River. Please take a moment to learn more about them, in their own words. Qaderi, Hedayatullah

Please tell everyone your new title and a little bit about your professional background.
I currently work as Program Coordinator with Washington Integrated Sector Employment (WISE) team in Business Division at Green River College. I have worked as Admin Assistant with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), as Administrative Assistant with Louise Berger Group (LBG) funded by U.S. government, as Program Assistant with United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and as Admin Assistant with Conference Services at Green River College.

What drew you to apply to Green River?
GRC is a well-known college for serving a diverse community, I have an Associate degree in business from Green River College, previously worked with Green River, well familiar with GRC compound, and I love the environment at GRC.

On the car ride to work, what do you listen to?
Mostly news and sometimes music.

What was the very first job you ever had?
Admin Assistant with JICA.

What about your new position is most exciting for you?
Yes, definitely. I am very excited and delighted for being promoted from the position of Admin Assistant to Program Coordinator.

What is one thing you’d love to accomplish in your first year at Green River?
Despite of doing my own duties and responsibilities, I would also love to be a good team player where I could cooperate with others and contribute to the best of my abilities in order to achieve our goals.

What three accomplishments are you most proud of in your life?
First, getting my first Associate Degree in business from Green River College. Second, I am a Senior at Central Washington University (CWU) pursuing my Bachelor’s degree in business with double majors in Finance and Management and will be graduating in Fall quarter 2017. Third, being selected for the position of Program Coordinator at Green River College. These are the three accomplishments that I am really proud of in my life.

If your coworkers were to give you an office nickname, what would that be? Why?
I think that would be Raihan and that’s because I go by this name as well.

For Green River’s annual talent show (this doesn’t actually exist), what hidden talent would you showcase for everyone?
I can speak five languages and I am a good Soccer, Volleyball, Cricket and Billiard player.

If G.R.E.E.N. were an acronym for something, what would each letter stand for?
G
reat
Representation of
Equal
Employment
Numbers

9th Annual Challenge Coin Ceremony

Posted on behalf of Sandra Mathews & Manila Mercurio, Veterans Services Team

Vet Coin Ceremony Coins

2015 Green River Challenge Coins

Please join us for Green River’s 9th Annual Challenge Coin Ceremony!

Where: River Room, Mel Lindbloom Student Union
When: Thursday, May 25, 2017 from 11:30a.m. to 1p.m.

  • 11:30a.m.: Doors open & Lunch Served
  • Noon – 1p.m.: Ceremony

Lunch will be provided, and all veteran students, faculty, and staff are invited to attend. Veterans will receive a complimentary Green River College Anniversary Challenge Coin! In consideration for our speakers and Veteran students, we ask that if you attend, please make every effort to stay for the ceremony. Space is limited – first come, first served!

If you need accommodations to participate in this event, please contact Veteran Services at 253-833-9111, ext. 2466; or by email at veterans@greenriver.edu.

Suzanne Johnson named next Green River President

Posted on behalf of College Relations

GRC Logo

Auburn, Wash. (April 25, 2017) – Dr. Suzanne Johnson will be the next president of Green River College.

The Green River Board of Trustees announced the decision during an April 25 board meeting. Johnson, Vice President for Academic Affairs at Suffolk County Community College in Long Island, New York, will start effective July 1. She will succeed Interim President Scott Morgan, who was appointed by the Board of Trustees on July 28, 2016.

“Dr. Johnson has the leadership qualities, professionalism, personal background and strength to lead Green River College into the future,” said Green River College Board of Trustees Chair Claudia Kauffman.

Johnson began her career in higher education in 1988 as a psychology instructor at Dowling College, and moved through the ranks to become the Dean of the College in 2012. Johnson also served as the Interim Campus President of the Sylvania Campus of Portland Community College in Portland, OR. Johnson has been instrumental in accreditation reviews, providing leadership over both instruction and student affairs, as well as having a deep commitment to the community college mission.

The Board of Trustees chose Johnson as the next Green River College president from a pool of 36 applicants. A 12-member Presidential Search Committee chaired by Interim President Morgan, included trustees, faculty, staff, students, and community members who volunteered their time to screen applications and recommend finalists to the Board of Trustees.


Allison Friedly
Executive Director of College Relations