2021 - Southwestern Illinois College

SWIC Aviation programs win Spirit of Flight award

Southwestern Illinois College recently won the 2020/2021 Spirit of Flight Award from the Illinois Aviation Hall of Fame, the first two-year college to receive the award. Pictured from left, Dean of Technical Education and Workforce Development Bradley Sparks, Aviation Pilot Training Coordinator Keith Mueller and Aviation Maintenance Technology Coordinator Matthew Harter in the AVMT Hangar. The Spirit of Flight award annually goes to the organization that has made a substantial contribution to aviation in Illinois, with Illinois-based activities over a long period of time. The winning organization’s members must go above and beyond the call of duty and exhibit a high degree of excellence in their accomplishments. The award was presented at the annual Illinois Aviation Hall of Fame banquet in St. Charles, Illinois in October. SWIC offers associate in applied science degrees and certificates in Aviation Pilot Training and Aviation Maintenance Technology. The college’s Aviation programs were established more than 50 years ago. For more information about SWIC Aviation programs, visit swic.edu/aviation.

SWIC announces apprenticeship initiative designed to pair classroom learning with on-the-job training

Just in time for National Apprenticeship Week 2021, Nov. 15-19, Southwestern Illinois College has earned its certificate of registration in the U. S. Department of Labor’s National Apprenticeship Program. As a registered apprenticeship sponsor, SWIC will be able to help employers in the region develop apprenticeship programs to serve their hiring needs with a minimum of red tape.

A registered apprenticeship is the gold standard of workforce development, combining on-the-job training with related classroom instruction and attention to “soft” skills such as leadership, cooperation, teamwork, and work ethic.  

“Apprenticeship really has something for everyone, and that’s what makes it such an attractive workforce strategy,” said Mike Conley, SWIC’s director of workforce development and career pathways. “Employers improve recruitment and retention, and boost productivity. Employees have opportunities for high-wage careers, and educational institutions help reinforce the imperative of high-quality training.”

The commitment from employers helps build greater loyalty, job satisfaction, and a sense of accountability. Employees have access to proven training methods in both the technical skills of a career and the specific requirements of an individual company.

The college’s role in the process, Conley explained, is both as a training provider and a facilitator for apprenticeship programs, especially for small companies that may not have the resources to build their own programs. 

SWIC will coordinate apprenticeship programs in the occupations of General Machinist, Shipping and Receiving Clerk, Dock Worker (warehousing), Welder, Pharmacist Assistant, and Aircraft Maintenance Technician. Conley emphasized that the college will likely expand that list significantly in the future, based on demand from employers. Being a registered sponsor means the college also has access to the Department of Labor’s Registered Apprenticeship Partners Information Management Data System and its resources.

 “Statistically, 94 percent of apprentices continue to work for the same company after the apprenticeship has ended,” Conley said. “More than 90 percent of companies who have tried apprenticeship would recommend it to their peers.”

Successful apprenticeship programs are being launched throughout the nation in fields as varied as manufacturing, healthcare, information technology, insurance and financial services, hospitality, and retail trade, among others.

“U.S. businesses are enjoying record demand for their services and products, but they can’t maintain enough supply to satisfy it, and a big reason for that is a lack of human capital,” Conley said. “Apprenticeship is simply the most effective way to meet the workforce needs as well as the demand for services and products.”

A list of resources and events for the week is available at ApprenticeshipIllinois.com.

For more information about SWIC apprenticeship programs, contact Conley at 618-235-2700, ext. 5139, or michael.conely@swic.edu.

Conqueror’s Christian Center honored as major donor to the SWIC Soup Program

The Southwestern Illinois College Foundation recently recognized the Conqueror’s Christian Center as a major donor to the SWIC Soup Program that helps feed students in need. From left, SWIC Foundation Executive Director Rena Thoele, Conqueror’s Christian Center Financial Secretary Alice Jackson and SWIC English Professor Tami Hughes. Conqueror’s Christian Center has been a major donor of ramen for the program for the last two years. The Soup Program, which provides meals and snacks such as ramen, crackers and raisins to students in need, no questions asked, was started by Arts and Humanities faculty Hughes and Barb Hunter, Ph.D. The food has been distributed through the Success Center since 2015. Prior to COVID, approximately 220 meals were given away to students each week. For information on donating to the Soup Program, call Hughes at 618-301-6721 or 618-641-5174 or email tami.hughes@swic.edu.

SWIC to stage The Laramie Project Nov. 5-7

Experience the captivating play, “The Laramie Project,” presented by Southwestern Illinois College Division of Arts and Sciences, as it reveals the reaction to the 1998 murder of gay college student Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyoming.

Co-directed by SWIC Communication Arts Professors Emily Kelly-Padden and Julie Willis, the 2000 play by Moisés Kaufman and the members of Tectonic Theater Project, focuses on the community reaction to the violent crime. The production will run Friday, Nov. 5 and Saturday, Nov. 6 at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, Nov. 7 at 2 p.m. in the SWIC Belleville Main Complex Theatre, 2500 Carlyle Ave.

“The Laramie Project” centers around a hate crime that attracted worldwide attention, bringing sexual discrimination and violence to the forefront of public discussion. “The play shocks, challenges, and moves all who watch it as it reveals the lowest depths of hatred and greatest heights of compassion that lies within all human beings in any seemingly average community,” as stated on brownpapertickets.com.

Tickets are $5 with a student ID, $10 for general admission and can be purchased at the door, cash-only.

The play deals with themes of an adult nature and is intended for mature audiences.

Funding and resources provided by the SWIC Division of Arts and Sciences, the SWIC Foundation and the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

For more information, call Kelly-Padden at 618-235-2700, ext. 5419.

Banker Jeanne Dalman of O’Fallon named to the SWIC Foundation Board

Jeanne M. Dalman, Senior Vice President of Retail Banking and Operations for the First National Bank of Waterloo, has been named to the Southwestern Illinois College Foundation Board. As a board member, she will support the Foundation’s efforts to secure gifts for special educational and cultural activities that are not part of the college budget.

Dalman brings decades of experience in financial management to the Foundation Board. As an graduate of SWIC, then named Belleville Area College, with an Associate Degree in Business Administration, Dalman is thrilled to be able to serve on the board and support the college that provided her with a great education that prepared her for so many opportunities as she began her career. With many years of banking experience and several years of serving in the public sector as St. Clair County Deputy Clerk, she is excited to bring her knowledge and experience to the SWIC Foundation Board.

Jeanne M Dalman Foundation Board Member

She will serve through 2030.

For more information about the Foundation, visit swic.edu/foundation.

Senior Companion Program looking for seniors or caregivers

Are you a senior who is feeling lonely, or are you a caregiver to a senior and in need of a little break? Senior Companions can help!

The Senior Companion Program pairs healthy, active people 55 and older with other seniors who otherwise would not be able to live independently. Southwestern Illinois College Programs and Services for Older Persons sponsors the program.

“The companions provide supportive, individualized services to help clients maintain their dignity and independence,” said Carla Boswell, director of the Senior Companion Program at PSOP. “The goal is to foster their independence and keep them in their own homes. The program also serves as a support system for caregivers of homebound seniors.”

At no cost to the client, Senior Companions provide companionship and assistance to older adults who are homebound and want to remain in their home or may be socially isolated. They visit four hours per day, one or more days per week and can assist with daily tasks, as well as give support and a much-needed break to full-time caregivers. All Senior Companions must go through a background check and training before they are placed with a senior. Companions earn a nontaxable stipend, paid holidays, meal and travel reimbursement and other benefits.

For more information regarding the Senior Companion Program, contact Deena Duvall in Monroe or Randolph counties at 618-282-6682, ext. 8135; Deirdre Evans in the East St. Louis area at 618-874-8779; Carla Boswell in Madison County at 618-797-7369; or Judy Foret in St. Clair County at 618-234-4410, ext. 7095.

Early Childhood Education instructors Beal and Day earn SWIC Faculty Member of the Year Awards

A dedication to students, a passion for teaching, and a wealth of experience are what made Early Childhood Education instructors Carolyn Beal and Jessica Day the obvious choices for the Southwestern Illinois College full- and part-time Faculty Members of the Year Awards, respectively.

Beal, of Belleville, is an ECE professor and the ECE and Education program coordinator, who has been with the program for 30 years. Not only does Beal care about her college students, but she cares deeply about improving the profession.

“Watching the enthusiasm when a student realizes they have found their calling in this profession is amazing,” Beal said. “Graduation is one of my favorite things about teaching at SWIC. Witnessing students and their families celebrate either persistence in finally completing a degree or being the first in the family with a college degree.”   

Beal has led the initiative for SWIC to become a Gateways Entitled Institution, which provides community college students opportunities to earn credentials while completing coursework. She also co-authored and was awarded a $25,000 ICCB Competency-Based Education Grant. As a result, Beal and her ECE adjunct instructors created modules with avatars in classroom simulations. They also created self-paced, competency-based modules for those who are currently working in ECE centers. 

In addition to her duties as program coordinator, she teaches Intro to Early Childhood Education, Child Growth and Development, Child Health Maintenance, Early Childhood Practicum, and Child Family and Community.

“Carolyn Beal is the ideal educator. She is a known commodity state wide with her ECE colleagues,” said Chief Academic Officer Gina Segobiano, Ed.D. “She is someone who is not only well educated herself but is also compassionate and understanding, and elevates everyone around her through her commitment to the program. Her representation of SWIC and advocacy for the ECE program is commended.”

Beal earned her Associate in Arts in Psychology from SWIC, then known as Belleville Area College, in 1984, a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from McKendree University in 1986, and Master of Science in Psychology from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in 1993.

Previously she worked with the Belleville Area Special Services Cooperative as a school psychologist and at My Friend’s House, child care center in Mascoutah as a teacher/director.

She and her husband, Jim, have one son, Elijah, and one daughter, Annika.

Day, of Trenton, has been with SWIC since 2012, first with the Culinary Arts and Food Management program, then as an adjunct ECE instructor, and served as a dual credit instructor since 2016, first at O’Fallon Township High School from 2009 to 2020, then at Triad High School from 2020 to the present. After changing school districts, she developed additional dual credit opportunities at her new school.

She, along with Beal, participated in the $25,000 ICCB grant project which created online, self-paced modules and virtual reality scenarios, plus an institutional grant for increased technology in assessment.

“Education is what remains after students have left the classroom, which is why every class needs to be informational, relevant, and impactful,” Day said. “My job as a teacher is to connect students to content so that they can focus on its implementation in their own unique way.”

At SWIC, Day teaches Growth and Development of Children, Introduction to Early Childhood Education, Intro to Educational Technology, Child Health Maintenance, and Safety and Sanitation.

Day also incorporates service learning into her dual credit courses. While teaching at OTHS, Day sponsored the OTHS Interact Club, which was also sponsored by the local Rotary Club. The student group conducted research to learn more about the needs of those in Malawi, Africa. Day’s students collected and sent more than 3,500 books to Mawali and raised more than $500 for shipping and other costs associated with the project.

“By keeping the students engaged in course content, they are more likely to experience success,” said SWIC Dean of Arts and Sciences Mary Ruettgers, Ed.D. “She is very approachable, well liked, and respected by the dual credit students. These qualities enhance student achievement.”

Day earned her Bachelor of Science in Workforce Education from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale in 2008 and her Master of Public Administration and Policy Analysis from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville in 2019. She would love to pursue a doctorate in organizational leadership in the future and use that knowledge to help continue program growth not only at the collegiate level but also within our local schools.

In addition, she works as a corporate trainer at the Corporate Training Center since 2012 and previously worked as an assistant teacher at the Southern Illinois University Child Development Laboratory from 2006 to 2008.

Day and her husband, Michael, have three daughters, Maddie, Makenna and Hallie, and one son, Beau.

Beal and Day were also nominated by the college for the Illinois Community College Trustee Association’s Outstanding Full-time and Part-time Faculty Member of the Year honors.

For more information about SWIC, visit swic.edu/ece.

SWIC 2021 SkillsUSA PMT National Winners

Southwestern Illinois College students earned bronze medals at the 2021 National SkillsUSA competition held in July. SWIC students, from left to right, include Bryce Griggs of Granite City, Alex MidKiff of Belleville, Billy Laycock of Marine, Philip Culiberk of Maryville, Steven Boss of O’Fallon and Will Andersen of St. Louis.  Laycock, MidKiff and Andersen won as a team in Automated Manufacturing Technology; Boss earned a medal for CNC Milling; and Culiberk took his prize in the CNC Technician category. Griggs competed at the state level but was unavailable to compete at the national level. Andersen said the most challenging part about the competition was coordinating all of their efforts so they worked together smoothly as a team. SkillsUSA is a national technical education organization that partners educators, employers and students to teach greater skills to Americans. The SkillsUSA Championships are competitive events showcasing the best career and technical education students in the nation. Due to COVID restrictions, competitors completed their projects at their respective colleges. SWIC Precision Machining students have won 13 national machining medals in the last 10 years, the most by any college in the country.

SWIC Releases Spring Semester 2021 Dean’s List

The following is a list of full- and part-time students on the Southwestern Illinois College Dean’s List for the Spring 2021 Semester.

This list includes full-time students who completed 12 or more semester credits during the semester and part-time students who completed six or more semester credits during the semester while maintaining a 3.5 or higher grade point average.

The students’ names are listed alphabetically according to hometown:

SWIC Spring 2021 Deans List

For more information, contact SWIC Enrollment Services at 618-235-2700, ext. 5455 or 866-942-SWIC (7942), ext. 5455.

SWIC Releases Spring 2021 Semester Graduate List

The following is a list of Southwestern Illinois College students who graduated at the conclusion of the Spring 2021 Semester. The students’ names are listed alphabetically according to hometown.

The list also denotes students who graduated with honors (a 3.5 grade point average or higher) and with a perfect 4.0 GPA.

SWIC Spring 2021 Graduate List.

For more information, contact SWIC Enrollment Services at 618-235-2700,
ext. 5455 or 866-942-SWIC (7942), ext. 5455.