November 18, 2020
Vickie Shields
Provost’s Office Gets Its Leadership On!
Once or twice a year, my office has taken a day to reconnect with each other, our shared purpose, and further hone our leadership skills. This time, we had to keep the meeting virtual, but we used the half day to focus on the big ideas we would like to inform our strategic direction as a team this coming year. We added to our small cannon of go-to books by reading and discussing two new ones: Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking when Stakes are High and a text brought to my attention by Dr. LaTricia Perry, Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts. I highly recommend both texts, but if you are looking for strategies to guide a discussion “where the stakes are high, opinions vary, and emotions run strong,” Crucial Conversations might be especially worth your time. 
Other books we have read and found particularly useful are: Finding the Space to Lead: A Practical Guide to Mindful Leadership; The Five Dysfunctions of a Team; Insight: The Surprising Truth about How Others See Us, How We See Ourselves, and Why the Answers Matter More than We Think; and one of my favorites, Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard.
Next, we will be reading one of Dr. Stefanie Coleman’s favorite leadership books: Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t.
Continuing S/U Grading Option for Fall 2020 and Spring 2021
Given that COVID-19 continues to interrupt our students’ lives in myriad ways that can still be extremely unpredictable, we want to aid them in any way we can during this time to alleviate stresses around grades and remote learning challenges. Therefore, Nevada State is extending the S/U grading option for fall 2020 and spring 2021. We anticipate following the same protocol that we used for spring and summer 2020. More details will be sent out to campus and directly to students in the next few days.
Responding to Stay at Home 2.0
As I noted in my recent letter to campus, I’m proud to be part of community that has come together to continue our mission in the face of unprecedented challenges. Because we responded so successfully to the COVID challenges and have NOT been a source of community spread of the virus, we did not have to close campus offices, residence halls, or other services. We also did not need go completely to remote learning after Thanksgiving, although faculty members were given the option to do so.
Tony Scinta
Short update today because I’m behind the curve right now and, perhaps more importantly, don’t feel like I have a lot of noteworthy updates this week.

One fairly hot topic has been the budget, both our overall institutional funding for FY22 (which remains uncertain as we plan for multiple contingencies) and the individual strategic initiatives that we want to undertake in the coming years. I’ve been working more closely with my team on their budget considerations as we head into the FY22 budget cycle.

Enrollment Considerations
We continue to address our enrolment goals on a number of different levels. A critical one is our recruitment campaign, where our high-flying admissions and recruitment team is implementing ways to share the NSC magic to prospective students in a virtual world. Among these efforts is the recent Virtual Open House, and I want to offer my thanks to the team and the many faculty and staff who participated on a substantive level to make it happen. Our work in this area also includes new transfer initiatives in partnership with CSN and Northern Nevada Schools (which I’ll mention in more detail in a future update), as well as a focus on an indispensable form of enrollment growth, which comes from the continued progression of our current students. I’ll be talking to deans and chairs about this particular emphasis in the days and weeks ahead and, soon enough, will have some numbers to report
Gwen Sharp
Sankofa Event
Thursday (11/18) at 4 p.m. Sankofa will host "Black Student College Success: Tips and Tricks Panel." This will be a great opportunity to learn a bit more about the Black student experience at NSC, directly from the students themselves. All faculty and staff are welcome; RSVP to receive the event link.

Reminder: Updated IRB Application Form
Over the summer I revised the IRB application, based on issues I'd seen with it that frequently confused people filling it out. The form has been simplified and streamlined to be less repetitive. Be sure you use the updated form for IRB applications.

These policies are approved and will be added to the policy library:

  • Zarah Borines (Nursing) had her article, "Effectiveness of Mentorship Program in the Emergency Department," accepted for publication in Journal for Nurses in Professional Development.
  • Jollina Simpson (Interim Writing Center Coordinator) and Hugo Virrueta (Writing Specialist) published "Writing Center: The Musical" in The Peer Review.
  • Rachel Herzl-Betz (Interim Writing Center Director) and Hugo Virrueta will publish "Perdiendo Mi Persona: Negotiating Language and Identity at the Conference Door" in the spring 2021 issue of Pedagogy.
  • Carol Lee (Psychology) co-authored "Personal Meaning as a Predictor of Behavioral Action over and above the Role of State Social Anxiety," which has been accepted for publication in the Journal of Theoretical Social Psychology.

Save the Date: Virtual Undergraduate Research and Creative Works Conference
The 2021 URCW Conference will be held Friday, April 23rd. We will open the portal for submissions on Monday, January 25, 2021. Our keynote speaker will be Dr. Julia Lee, Associate Professor of English at Loyola Marymount University.

Visit the URCW website for updates.

Free Student Memberships in AAUW
NSC recently became an institutional member in the American Association of University Women (AAUW). All enrolled NSC students get a free AAUW membership.

If you know students who might be interested, direct them to the AAUW E-Student Affiliate page to sign up. AAUW offers online salary negotiation training, an annual career and graduate school fair, and other resources.
Gregory Robinson
Join Us for LNAP!
This year's Long Night Against Procrastination (LNAP) takes place on Friday, Nov. 20th, 5pm- midnight. Several units on campus are participating, including the Writing Center, the ASC, the Library, Nepantla, the CARE Team, and the Blue Sage Writer’s Guild. Faculty, staff, and student participants don’t need to RSVP - just go to the Writing Center Canvas page and log in on the day of the event.

Here are some ways you can help support the event:
  • Share the link above so that students can join in.
  • Offer extra credit for participation. We can collect the names of students who attend.
  • Provide extra office hours that night so students can say hello.
  • Register and join us! We love having faculty/staff members (and writing groups) join us to help their students and to work on their own writing projects.
  • Connect with your colleagues to host department meet-ups during the night.
  • Keep info about the event available on your Canvas pages.

Instructor Presence
On November 10th, the CTLE hosted a thoughtful presentation by Dr. Kevin Gannon, Director of the Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning at Grand View University. His topic was “presence” in online classes, including instructor presence (the sense that a real person is leading the class) and student presence (opportunities for students to interact in meaningful ways, as they might in an in-person class). These types of presence are part of the Community of Inquiry (CoI) model, which was introduced in a 1999 article by Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. In you are looking for ways to make an online class stronger, the CoI model is a great place to start.
Stefanie Coleman
It's Real!
Hello, my name is Stefanie, and I'm suffering from COVID fatigue.

COVID fatigue is real. I'm one of many who is tired of being cooped up in the house, scared to be out of the house too long, tired of being scared, and tired of being careful. I'm just guessing, but the "tired of being careful" may be why the country is seeing a spike in cases. When I know I am tired of being careful, I pause and become deliberate and mindful, to stay careful. I'll admit, I started to relax the social distancing, washing my hands often, and I angrily walked back to my car (talking to myself) to get my mask before a nail appointment. I also noticed my patience is short, and my daughter said I'm "snippy" (that may not be COVID). We're all trying to adapt and adjust after 200+ days of restricted living. Understanding means a lot to me these days. I know I'm not alone in the struggle. Moving forward, I will continue to share the available support for students on and off campus in my updates.

Continue to persevere, Scorpions, and remember to wash your hands, wear your mask, and watch your social distancing. Remember:

  • Student emergency funds are still available. Students can apply here.
  • All About You counseling is still providing services to students. To schedule, students should call 702.754.0807 and identify as an NSC student. 
  • To find a community food pantry near you, check out these sites: 

Thank You!
CARE Services and the Office of Community Engagement and Diversity Initiatives have teamed up to help students needing food support for the month of November. With monetary donations and food pantry items, students who signed up for the event will receive bags of food to help with several meals or to use toward a holiday feast. This will be a safe and socially distanced event where students will drive up to campus and volunteers will load their vehicle with the goodies. Thanks to EVERYONE who has supported the food pantry in some way, shape, or form. Your giving has made this event possible!

Nice Job, Advising Team!
The Academic Advising Center just held virtual "walk-ins" for fall registration week. This week is traditionally the busiest week of the year for Advisors, and this year was no different. The AAC saw 705 students from November 2nd-6th, a 22% increase compared to last fall! In addition to this awesome week, Academic Advisors saw a 28% increase in traffic during the month of October and the Student Success Team (Jesse Poole and Nicola Opfer) have already processed 699 e-alerts this fall, a 250% increase compared to the 200 processed last fall, and the semester isn't over yet!

Happy Native American Heritage Month!
Sandip Thanki
National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)
In 2020, we had students complete the NSSE module on first-year experiences and senior transitions. Below I highlight some areas where our students scored (statistically) significantly better than students at other institutions; there were no areas where our students' responses were significantly worse.

First-Year Students
  • Participating in discussions, even if they didn't feel like it (!)
  • Asking instructor for help and looking up more information if they didn't understand an assignment
  • Less difficulty getting help and interacting with instructors
  • More likely to use academic support services

  • Classes preparing them for post-graduation plans
  • Intent to work in field of study
  • Confidence in their critical thinking, problem-solving, research skills, writing, persuasive speaking, and technology skills
  • Extend their program emphasized generating new ideas, taking risks with coursework, and evaluating multiple approaches to a problem
Key Dates
  • 11/19: Sankofa panel on Black College Student Success, 4-5 p.m. (RSVP)
  • 11:20: Long Night Against Procrastination, 5pm-midnight (join, no RSVP needed)
  • 11/26-28: Thanksgiving holiday; campus closed, no classes
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