Awards and Achievements


Awards and Achievements

Accomplishments 2012-2013 Academic Year

De Anza Athletics Takes Championship
Congratulations to all the student athletes, coaches and staff of De Anza College Athletics for being the 2011-12 Coast Conference All-Sports Award winter! This is the fifth year in a row De Anza has won the award, and the 18th time in 28 years. There are 17 colleges in the Coast Conference.

La Voz Wins Awards at JACC Conference
The De Anza student newspaper won numerous awards in September at the Journalism Association of Community Colleges/Northern California conference. Competing against student from 24 other community colleges, De Anza students brought home:

  • First place: Martin Towar for column writing
  • Second place: Michael Mannina for copy editing
  • Third place: Alicia Rivera for column writing
  • Honorable mentions: Bryce Druzin for opinion piece; Sara Gobets for page layout, news photo and feature story; Andrew Puckett for page layout; Christopher Wu for sports action photo

Honor Society Receives Special Commendation
The Alpha Sigma Alpha Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society at De Anza was named a “Five Star Chapter” at the Nevada/California Regional Convention in June. The chapter was also recognized at the Society’s recent Annual Convention and is recognized on the society’s website at www.ptkawards-digital.com/ptkawards/2012ac#pg1.

Two Students Honored in National Literary Competition
The winners of the League for Innovation in the Community College’s 2011-2012 National Student Literary Competition included two De Anza Students:

  • Kevin Eung, second place for his essay “Trail of Corpses”
  • Cindy Yeh, honorable mention for her short story “Seven Things”

The 2012-2013 competition will be hosted by the Foothill-De Anza CCD and coordinated by English instructor Ken Weisner. Contestants must be fall 2012 or spring 2013 students enrolled for credit in a League for Innovation institution. Watch for complete information, coming soon, about the competition on posters, flyers, portal messages and De Anza’s website.

Euphrat Nominated for National Award
In June, Congressman Mike Honda (15th Congressional District) nominated the Euphrat Museum of Art for the 2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor for exemplary service by these institutions. The National Medal honors museums and libraries that make extraordinary civic, educational, economic, environmental and social contributions. The winners are honored at a National Medal award ceremony held in Washington, D.C.

Instructor Honored by State Academic Senate
The Academic Senate for California Community Colleges has honored English instructor and LEAD coordinator Marc Coronado with the 2012 Regina Stanback-Stroud Diversity Award. This award was created to honor outstanding faculty who actively address diversity on their campus. The LEAD program at De Anza, established in 2006, creates opportunities for students to learn leadership, improve basic English writing skills, perform community service and build alliances across ethnic lines.

Director of ICCE Publishes Book
Cynthia Kaufman
, philosophy instructor and director of De Anza’s Institute for Community and Civic Engagement, recently published a book through Lexington Books. “Getting Past Capitalism: History, Vision, Hope” looks in new ways at what capitalism is and its impacts on human society and environment. More information about the book can be viewed at http://faculty.deanza.edu/kaufmancynthia/stories/storyReader$112.

Instructor Collaborates on Scientific Teaching Project
De Anza biology instructor Jeff Schinske and Kimberly Tanner, a professor of biology at SFSU, have been collaborating the past three years on the first phase of a grant-funded project that served 130 Bay Area community college biology instructors (including 18 biology faculty from FHDA) to help them find innovative ways to teach science. This Phase 2 grant will allow the team to continue to offer their Summer Teaching Institutes to community college faculty in the San Francisco Bay Area. In August, the National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded the team almost $564,000 to provide this professional development for scientific teaching. The ultimate goal of the project is for students to be more engaged in science and make successful transitions to four-year universities. The team received a letter of congratulations from U.S. Congresswoman Jackie Speier for their continuing efforts.

Math Instructor Named to State Chancellor’s Office Position
Barbara Illowsky
has accepted an Interjurisdictional Exchange (IJE) position as the Basic Skills Specialist for the California Community College Chancellor’s Office. Illowsky begins working at the Chancellor’s Office on Aug. 13, and will return to De Anza to teach again in September 2013.

Women’s Cross Country Team Makes History
Congratulations to coach Nick Mattis and his team for winning the Coast Conference Championship in October. Teammates Oddessy Tapia, Alexa Torres and Dominique Guinnane all made the First Team All-Conference list, while Kiera Fincannon, Kendra Higgins, Yaritza Barajas and Ainslee Hampel were all named to the Second Team All-Conference List, the most All-Conference runners ever from De Anza in one year.

The team finished in fourth place at the state championships in November, the highest finish since the 1977 state championship team. Kudos go to sophomore Katie Castro who won the individual state title race by 29 seconds over the second place finisher. Castro is the first Cross Country State Champion in De Anza’s history, and was also named Female Athlete of the Month (October) by the California Community College Athletic Association and the California Community College Sports Information Association.

The Men’s Cross Country Team finished third in the team standings with Andrew Kuo awarded First Team All-Conference Honors and Ryan Miranda awarded Second Team All-Conference Honors.

Football Coach Named Coach of the Year
Coach Dan Atencio was voted Coach of the Year in the NorCal Conference in November. Quarterback Josh McCain was voted Offensive Player of the Year. The team shared a three-way co-championship with Butte and San Francisco, a remarkable feat for a team that was “C” league just four years ago. While the football team lost to Delta in the last few seconds of the Silicon Valley Bowl, they can be proud of an 8-2 record in regular season play.

De Anza Basketball Alumnus Coaching in NBA
Vance Walberg, former De Anza player from 1974-76 and coach at Fresno City College from 2002-06, has been hired onto the Denver Nuggets coaching staff.

Graphic Design Instructor is Grand Prize Winner
Michael Cole
was named the Grand Prize winner in the Higher Education category of the 2012 Educators’ Choice Awards in November. The project’s title is “TYPE FACES: Beginning Graphic Design/Topography Project,” which is a series of caricature faces using only letterforms and bits and pieces of individual typefaces. To learn more about the awards and to see examples of Cole’s project, visit http://edexchange.adobe.com/pages/09a1b0d5f2

Art Instructor’s Sculpture Installed in Playground
Moto Ohtake
recently installed a 22-foot, wind-driven kinetic sculpture commissioned by the San Francisco Arts Commission at the city’s Fulton Playgound. The piece, titled “Aero #8” is comprised of several interlocking loops of different sizes that move in continuous gyroscopic circular motions.

  • October 2011 – Silvia Bichler, Creative Arts
  • November 2011 – Lois Jenkins, Marketing/Communications
  • December 2011 – Rosa Sousa, Custodial
  • January 2012 – Dennis Reed, Custodial
  • February 2012 – Joan Pena-Ferrick, Admissions and Records
  • March 2012 – Phong Lam, Student Success Center
  • April 2012 – Pat Cornely, Environmental Studies
  • May 2012 – Jo Ann Okabe-Kubo, International/Intercultural Division Office 
  • June 2012 – Mary Campbell, Biology Lab Technician  

My Vote Our Future Honored with Two Awards
The grassroots voting campaign was recognized with proclamations from California State Assemblyman Paul Fong and the Santa Clara County Department of Education for registering more than 3,000 new voters in two months for the November general election. A team of 28 De Anza student organizers, high school interns and more than 100 De Anza volunteers worked to engage underrepresented youth, immigrants, parents and low-income residents in the voting process. (www.mercurynews.com/sunnyvale/ci_22352210/local-grassroots-voter-campaign-recognized-proclamations)

Counselor to Present at National Conference
Pauline Wethington
has been invited to be a guest presenter at the National Conference on Race & Ethnicity (NCORE) in May, which focuses on issues of diversity. She will speak about counseling strategies to improve the academic success of African American students.

Two De Anza Women’s Athletic Teams Honored
Congratulations to Coach Danielle Von Matt (Women’s Water Polo) and Coach Rachel Pacheco (Softball) for their teams’ selection as California Scholar-Teams by the California Community College Athletics Association (CCCAA). The awards recognize the academic achievements of teams for 2011-2012. The teams will be acknowledged at the CCCAA Convention in San Mateo, March 26-26. These are De Anza’s 11th and 12th scholar-teams. The Women’s Water Polo team had a 3.19 GPA, and the Softball team had a 3.15 GPA.

De Anza Announces Signees for Football Recruiting Class
Nine De Anza Football Players have been offered positions or are already playing for universities across America this year:

  • Justin Arcune, LB, now at Florida Tech
  • Mark Boreland, LB, offers being considered
  • Robertson Daniels, DB, UNLV, in August
  • Nova Hardy, WR, offers being considered
  • Ahron Jackson, DE, Florida Tech, in June
  • Joshua McCain, QB, University of Idaho, in June
  • Kris Merrill, OL, Minot State (Montana), in June
  • Daniel Musika, OL, now at Pointe University (Georgia)
  • Trevor Pardula, P/K, now at University of Kansas

Two Former De Anza Football Players Go to 2013 Senior Bowl
On Saturday, Jan. 26, Will Davis (Utah State) and Ty Powell (Harding) played in Mobile, Alabama’s Ladd-Peebles Stadium in the Senior Bowl. The Senior Bowl is the nation’s most unique football game and football’s premier pre-draft event, according to its website (www.seniorbowl.com/events.asp). The bowl annually features the country’s best senior collegiate football stars and top NFL draft prospects, coached by the entire coaching staffs from two NFL teams.

De Anza Student’s Short Selected for Cinequest
“Rock,” a film produced in the De Anza College Film/TV Department by student Herb Wolff, has been selected for Cinequest Film Festival 2013. The work will compete among 11 films in Cinequest's Student Shorts Competition, scheduled for screenings on Wednesday, March 6, and Friday, March 8, at 9:30 p.m. at the San Jose Repertory Theatre. The Student Shorts Competition includes selections from prestigious film programs such as Columbia University, Stanford University, Sapir College in Israel and Shih Hsin University in Taiwan. De Anza is the only U.S. community college represented in the competition. Wolff’s film is about a young boy who, alone and bored with his indoor life, ventures outside to his favorite swimming hole, only to find it already occupied. A showdown ensues.

English Instructor Honored by Arts Council
Dave Denny
, instructor at De Anza and poet laureate of Cupertino, has been granted an Artist Laureate award from the Silicon Valley Arts Council. The awards recognize the region’s finest creative artists. See www.artscouncil.org/page/grants_artist_laureate for more information on the awards.

Environmental Studies Department Publication Featured in Exhibit
“Safe Passages for Coyote Valley – A Wildlife Linkage for the Highway 101 Corridor” will be highlighted in an upcoming exhibit at the Museums of Los Gatos in March.

Nine De Anza Faculty and Classified Professionals Honored
President Brian Murphy named nine colleagues as De Anza’s winners of the League for Innovation John & Suanne Roueche Excellence Awards for their outstanding contributions in teaching and leadership as well as their individual work. Winners are:

  • Alicia Cortez and Paula Silva, for their work with Puente project
  • Jim Haynes, Anu Khanna, Coleen Lee-Wheat, Mary Pape and Toño Ramirez for their work with Student Learning Outcomes, critical for accreditation
  • Kent McGee for DegreeWorks, an online tool that helps students create education plans
  • Kevin Metcalf for a searchable captioned video project

The League for Innovation in the Community College established the excellence awards in 2012. The awards are open to League Alliance member institutions to celebrate exemplary contributions and leadership by community college faculty and staff. Each award recipient will receive an honorary certificate that will include his or her name and award year. They will also receive specially cast, pewter medallions. For more information see www.league.org/exawards/.

PG&E Rewards De Anza College for Energy Savings
The Foothill-De Anza Community College District has received $77,270 from PG&E for energy savings achieved through De Anza College's Media & Learning Center (MLC) and the A9/PE6 renovation and retrofits. The Savings by Design program is administered by California utilities and encourages high-performance, non-residential building design and construction.

The MLC has achieved an energy savings of 37.5 kW and 142,653.00 kWh, or 34.84 metric tons of avoided CO2 emissions—the equivalent of powering seven homes or removing five cars from the road for one year. The savings resulted in a $63,105 check from PG&E, with the remaining $14,165 for the A9/PE6 renovation and retrofits. The A9/PE6 project resulted in a combined savings of 36,607 kWh and 5,380 therms, the equivalent of avoiding 37.49 metric tons of CO2 emissions and enough to power nine homes and remove six cars from the road for one year.

An expanded version of this article appears in the Cupertino Patch.

Music Instructor Shines in Photography
One of music instructor Dan Mitchell’s photographs was selected for inclusion in Yosemite Renaissance 28: A Juried Exhibition of Contemporary Art of Yosemite and the Sierra. Mitchell’s black and white photograph, “Shoreline Reflections, Tenaya Lake,” earned a second place award in the exhibit and can be found at http://www.gdanmitchell.com/2010/07/03/shoreline-reflections-tenaya-lake. Information on the show, which runs through May 5, can be accessed at https://plus.google.com/100243301491554815806/posts.

Workforce Education Coordinator Granted Scholarship
Margaret Bdzil
, Workforce Education Coordinator at De Anza, will be attending the Fulbright Community College Administrators Seminar in Russia April 3-17. Bdzil will be presenting information about the American Community College system to college administrators and government officials, and providing technical assistance through participation in roundtables and meetings.

Biology Instructor Interviewed for Journal
Jeff Schinske
was interviewed for an article in the current issue of the journal Nature. The article talks about how U.S. scientists passionate about teaching can find rewarding work at community colleges. The full article can be seen at http://www.nature.com/naturejobs/science/articles/10.1038/nj7439-129a.

Photography Instructor is Featured Poetry Reader
Wilfredo Castano will be reading poetry at the Santa Cruz Main Library on Sunday, March 17, 2-4 p.m. The reading is sponsored by Poetry Santa Cruz, and the library is located at 224 Center Street.

Facilitator Training Program Named Innovation of the Year
The Student Facilitator Training Program has been selected as De Anza College's Innovation of the Year Award winner, sponsored by the League for Innovation.

The Facilitator Training Program is an engagement model that develops student leadership skills and benefits the institution in numerous ways. The program was initially created to support the Partners In Learning Conference, an annual collegewide event. The faculty coordinator for the 2010 conference worked with the entire conference planning committee and a speech instructor/facilitator trainer to pioneer the program. Students have facilitated each of the subsequent annual conferences, and facilitate many other campus and community events. Students receive intensive, experiential facilitator training prior to the conference. These practical skills build student confidence, and support their ability to serve as influential change-makers on campus and in their communities. Student facilitators work collaboratively with peers, faculty, staff and administrators to engage dialogue that has led to inclusiveness, increased student success and enriched college experiences. Ultimately, the most experienced facilitator trainees mentor and serve as role models for the next group of student facilitators.

The following faculty and staff members were instrumental in the creation and/or ongoing implementation of the program: Donna Stasio, Sal BreiterKaren Chow, Gregory Anderson, Alicia Cortez, Mary Kay Englen, Cynthia Kaufman, Coleen Lee-Wheat, Virginia Marquez, Jackie Reza and Veronica Neal. Also key to the program are guest facilitator trainer Mike Stasio and student mentors/trainers Deepa Yuvaraj and Jeanne Swafford.

Tennis Teams Make Playoffs
Congratulations to both De Anza Tennis Teams for making the NorCal Dual Team Regional Playoffs. Hats off to coaches Ron Ward, Sergey Gorshenin and their staff.

District International Student Program Receives National Recognition
FHDA's International Student Program has been awarded the President's Star Award for its success in the international student arena and its contribution to the success of federal trade. According to the Department of Commerce's Trade Office in San Jose, this award is the most prestigious that is given to American businesses and institutions engaged in international trade.

Scholar Athletes of the Year
Congratulations to De Anza College’s Athletes of the Year 2013: Cory Kingston and Katherine Ja. They will receive $1,000 scholarships. Runners-Up Jonathan Hernandez (cross country, tack and field), Karina Tabarez (soccer), and Tiffany Do (swimming and diving) will each receive $750 scholarships.

Kingston plays baseball and will transfer to the University of Albany on a baseball scholarship where he plans to major in environmental studies. A veteran U.S. Marine who served on the front lines in Afghanistan, Kingston has a 3.7 GPA.

Ja is a three-sport student athlete: volleyball, badminton and basketball. This past year she focused on badminton and led her team to the state title. Her sister and mother were also part of the state champion badminton team, probably a first for California Community Colleges. Ja is an English literature major with a 3.96 GPA and is currently deciding which university to attend: Santa Clara University, UC Berkeley or UCLA.

The Annual Recognition and Scholarship Ceremony will take place Wednesday, May 22, 1:30-3:30 p.m. in Conference Rooms A&B. For more information on the Team and Scholar-Athlete of the Year Awards, see www.deanza.edu/athletics/scholar-athletes/.

Women’s Badminton Team Wins State Championship
Congratulations to Coach Mark Landefeld and the Women’s Badminton Team on winning the State Championship against defending champs San Diego College with a 10-0 season. This is a first for the team since the 1997-98 school year. Team members were also individually honored.

  • Sheung Wi “Pinky” Li was the Coast Conference Singles Champion
  • Li and Jessica Dinh were the Coast Conference Doubles Champions
  • Katherine Ja and Christine Ja were the Coast Conference Runners Up

The doubles team final match was an all-De Anza affair, Li and Dinh  against team-mates Katherine Ja and Christine Ja. The Ja sisters were joined on the De Anza roster this season by Pearl Gee, a reserve player who is also the two players’ mother. Read the Cupertino Patch article on the competition.

Track and Field
Congratulations to Coach Nick Mattis and the Women’s Track and Field Team. They finished their season with two All-Americans and two All-State Athletes named.

  • Oddessy Tapia finished 4th with a school record time in 3000 steeplechase, and Terra Steadman finished 3rd in the discus. Both earned All-American honors.
  • Alexa Torres finished 7th in the 10,000, and Erin Fisher finished 8th in the heptathlon. Both earned All-State honors.
  • October 2012 – Melody Cheney, A&R
  • November 2012 – William Madden, Academic Adviser
  • December 2012 – Shari Pasquali, Veteran Services
  • January 2013 – Dennis Shannakian, Office of College Life
  • February 2013 – Julie Ceballos, Technology Resources Group
  • March 2013 – Patti Whelan, Disability Support Services
  • April 2013 – Nila Nine, Dining Services
  • May 2013 – Dianna Martinez, Environmental Studies


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Last Updated: 5/28/13