Sep 192014
Math on Demand Lab

Title V grant funding supports the Math on Demand program in Wright’s Math Lab

In recognition of Hispanic-Serving Institutions of higher education, President Barack Obama issued a presidential proclamation naming this “National Hispanic-Serving Institutions Week.” Wright College is a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) as designated by the federal government. For Fiscal Year 2014, Wright’s student population was 52 percent Hispanic/Latino and serving this community is a very important part of who we are and what we do.

As an HSI, Wright was eligible to apply for (and subsequently received) Title V grant funding, which supports a variety of our programs and resources for all students and the entire Wright College community, including:

At Wright College, we’re working to continuously improve the educational value we offer, as well as grow and provide opportunity to all we serve in our special role as an Hispanic Serving Institution.

With all best wishes,



President David Potash
Wright College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago

Sep 102014

As part of Welcome Week and the annual Wilburpalooza celebration, Wright College President David Potash joined thousands of people around the world who have taken the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to raise awareness and millions of dollars in donations for ALS research and care services. ALS – Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis – is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. The ice bucket challenge was designed to “wake up” the public concerning ALS and the need for further research to help fight the disease.

Assisting in the challenge were Wright College Student Government Association president Will Whitmore, vice-president Louis Cedeno, and treasurer Edwin Medina. Special thanks to David McDowell in Media Services for producing the video.

Thanks to all who joined in to support this important cause!

Sep 092014

Dr GuiuWright College Professor Adrian Guiu has added a new title to his many accomplishments: Ph.D!

Adrian Guiu – now, Dr. Adrian Guiu – has been awarded a doctorate by the University of Chicago. As a student in UC’s School of Divinity, he wrote a dissertation on Johannes Scotus Eriugena, 9th century Irish theologian.

“This is a major accomplishment,” said Wright College president David Potash. “It represents untold hours of work, great patience, and a deep commitment to intellectual and academic values. Dr. Guiu’s doctorate is a significant marker of substantive research and scholarship.”

At Wright College, Dr. Guiu teaches Ethics, Introduction to Religion, and Comparative Religion. He is the faculty adviser for both the Reading for Wisdom series and the Philosophy Club, and is a member of Wright’s Assessment Committee.

Dr. Guiu encourages Wright students to set and accomplish their academic goals, using his experience as an example. “Students need to be both focused on the goal but should also try to enjoy the journey and be careful to learn the lessons along the way,” said Dr. Guiu. “One should never give up and should always ask for help…there are many good, willing ‘angels’ around.”

Congratulations, Dr. Guiu!


Sep 052014

DijanaDijana Demirovic recently joined the Wright in Your Corner team as an Academic Support Specialist, a position funded by the Title V grant. Dijana will work closely with WiYC Director Brad Elwood, as well as WiYC Peer Mentors and Student Ambassadors. Welcome, Dijana!

WCN: How does the Academic Support Specialist work with Wright students?

Dijana: As the new Academic Support Specialist, my goal is to ensure that Wright in Your Corner continues to remain a place where students feel comfortable to study, meet new students, attend events, ask questions, and inquire about available resources.


WCN: What would you like to accomplish in your new role at WiYC?

Dijana: Collaborating with my team, our students, and different departments at Wright College, I plan to develop workshops and host events that not only speak to students’ interests, but that will also support their academic, career, and life goals. These workshops will also support Wright’s goals for helping students complete their degree or certificate and guiding them toward further educational or career pursuits.


WCN: What fuels your passion for working with students?

Dijana: I most enjoy drawing on my psychology background to engage, motivate, and encourage students from diverse populations, and helping them realize individual success.


WCN: What past experiences prepared you to work with and counsel students?

Dijana: During my undergraduate studies at Northeastern Illinois University, I had the opportunity to work in different schools through a U.S. Department of Education grant program called GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs). The goal of the program is to better prepare low-income students to succeed in postsecondary education. As part of the program, I worked in ASPIRA Haugen Middle School, Foreman High School, and others. After I earned my master’s degree from Loyola University, I worked as a school counselor for CPS.


WCN: What are some of your outside interests?

Dijana: When I am not working, I like to spend time with my family and friends, as well as read. I also enjoy being in nature and love to travel.  This summer, I traveled to Germany, Bosnia, Croatia, and Switzerland. Other countries that I had the opportunity to visit include: Sweden, Denmark, Austria, Slovenia, and Netherlands.

I’ve lived in Albany Park and currently live in nearby Portage Park. I enjoy exploring Chicago’s neighborhoods, festivals, and restaurants, and particularly love to eat Columbian food.


WCN: How do you plan to contribute to Wright’s vibrant community?

Dijana: I look forward to sharing both my professional and personal experiences with the Wright community, as well as learning from our students, staff, and faculty. It is my hope that by working together, we can provide the necessary resources that will foster our students’ academic, career, and social development and help them reach their goals.


Be sure to welcome Dijana! You will find her in the Wright in Your Corner student center (S-100), or you can email her at or call 773.481.8148.



Sep 042014
CTL.Kurt Leslie

Prof. Kurt Leslie kicked off the Fall 2014 CTL season with a fascinating discussion about Earth’s biodiversity.

Discover learning and development opportunities for CCC faculty and staff!

Wright College’s very own Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) kicked off its Fall program series with professor Kurt Leslie’s presentation: “From the Cryosphere to the Amazon Cloud Forest: Endangered Species and Global Warming.” Prof. Leslie and participants engaged in a lively discussion about the challenges and potential solutions concerning the loss of Earth’s biodiversity.

Future CTL topics will address curriculum development, website creation for the classroom, creativity and expression, soft skills, using mobile apps for teaching, games/role-playing in the classroom, and more; along with such special interest topics as Civil War battlefields, cannibalism and community, Batman, fungi, and Nicaragua’s biodiversity, among others.

  • Monday, September 8, 2pm:
    Curriculum Development Workshop – Creating and Revising Courses (Maria Jaskot-Inclan)
  • Tuesday, September 9th, 2pm:
    Whistling Vivaldi – How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do (Mira Kolodkin)
  • Wednesday, September 10th, 12:30pm: Teaching Ike Reilly (Vincent Bruckert)
  • Thursday, September 11th, 11am: Amazingly Easy Website Creation for the Classroom (Andrew Kruger)

Click here for the Fall 2014 Program Guide.

ALL City Colleges faculty & staff are welcome to participate in CTL sessions. Participants will receive credit through continuing education and a certificate of participation. Most importantly, participants will learn new things while spending time with friends and colleagues.

Sessions take place in the CTL’s recently dedicated space in Room S-243 (Science Building) at Wright College. For more information about the Center for Teaching and Learning, please contact co-chairs Alicia Anzaldo or Tracy Mitchell.

Aug 252014

To all Wright College students . . .

Welcome to the Fall 2014 semester!

As your college president, I want to let you know that all of us who work at Wright College are committed to providing you with a high quality education and all the support you need. We have an outstanding college, strong faculty and staff, and students who know that completion is the one sure path to success. Our goal is that you earn your degree or certificate and graduate from Wright.

In the past year, a record-breaking number students obtained their associate degrees from Wright. We want to celebrate your degree, too. Your professors, advisors, and staff are all here to help you complete.

Wright College 2014 graduate Chrissy Barnes (center) is headed to Mount Holyoke College and credits her success to the support of (from left) Transfer Center Assistant Ela Jakubczak, Transfer Center Director Susan Calabrese, College Advisor Nicole Meeuwse, and Associate Dean of Student Services Maria Llopiz.

Wright College 2014 graduate Chrissy Barney (center) is headed to Mount Holyoke College and credits her success to the support of (from left) Transfer Center Assistant Ela Jakubczak, Transfer Center Director Susan Calabrese, College Advisor Nicole Meeuwse, and Associate Dean of Student Services Maria Llopiz. Congrats, Chrissy!

Just last week, one of our recent graduates, Chrissy Barney, stopped by Wright to visit and thank her advisor and Advising Center staff for helping her complete and earn her associate degree (see picture). This week, Chrissy is headed to Mount Holyoke College – one of the oldest and most prestigious colleges in the nation – where she is enrolled as a transfer student. When Chrissy thanked and hugged her advisor, she said, “When I started, I never thought this would be possible.”

Completion is possible, with focus and hard work – and by making good use of the student resources available to you.

Wright College is the information technology (IT) center for City Colleges’ “College to Careers” initiative. We’re excited about new associate degree programs in Networking & Technology, Web Development and Computer Science, as well as several certificate programs – all designed to provide the high-demand skills needed for today’s exciting, high-growth industries.

We are working to ensure our facilities meet your needs now and into the future. This week, you’ll receive a survey about the Wright College campus, its physical space and surroundings. Please complete the survey – your feedback will help us greatly in determining space planning requirements and ensuring our physical surroundings are enjoyable, useful and support students’ needs.

Many of the facilities improvements are available to use and enjoy now. In the coming weeks, we will unveil the brand new dance studio and beautiful new gym floor.  Over the course of the semester, you’ll notice new furniture arriving to many of our classrooms – furniture that students like you helped to select last year. You can also take advantage of the new student lounge areas in the Science and Arts buildings, which feature media charging outlets. Use them to relax and recharge between classes.

Again, welcome – or welcome back – to Wright College. You are part of a rich, vibrant community, so enjoy it. Get involved. Stay informed. Stay focused. Keep moving. Keep learning. Keep succeeding. Complete. Complete. Complete. And always remember: success is possible – and we’re going to help you get there.

With all best wishes for a productive and successful semester,


David Potash
President, Wilbur Wright College

P.S.    Be sure to stay informed about Wright College news, events, and activities by subscribing to the Wright College blog – Wright College Net – and liking Wilbur Wright College on Facebook!

Aug 222014


Ted JankowskiTed Jankowski is a new full-time faculty member in the Mathematics Department at Wright College.  He will be teaching developmental math courses to students who need a refresher in math, preparing them for the higher level math courses necessary for graduation.  He will also be teaching other math courses as needed.

WCN: What is your favorite aspect of teaching math?

Ted: I enjoy incorporating group learning activities in the classroom setting and having students learn by active collaboration whenever possible.  It’s far too boring to just lecture, both for the students and the instructor.  Instead, students learn best by doing.  As Confucius said, “I hear and I forget.  I see and I remember.  I do and I understand.”

WCN: What is your background in math instruction?

Ted: I’ve been developing my craft for many years; two years as a part-time instructor at Kennedy-King College, and nine years as a full-time instructor at ITT Technical Institute.

WCN: Why did you choose math instruction as a profession?

Ted: My calculus teacher in high school had a profound influence on me.  It was a difficult and rigorous course to take in high school, but I learned only through hours and hours of dedicated practice and by sheer determination.  Not many of my colleagues liked our teacher because he was so tough, but he did teach us self-discipline, something we all needed to succeed in college and in our later careers.  I ended up being a mechanical engineer, but I never really tried teaching until I joined the Peace Corps for a few years and taught at a high school in rural Zimbabwe.  It was challenging, I admit.  Nevertheless, it was a wonderful life changing experience, one which I still fondly remember.

WCN: What might we find you doing when you’re not teaching at Wright?

Ted: I was born and raised in Chicago and now live near Jefferson Park.  It’s great living in Chicago, and I intend on staying here.  It’s a great vibrant cosmopolitan city. I’m an avid runner.  Each year I try to run a full marathon, and hopefully I will run my 12th this October.  I mainly do it for the exercise and comradery.  Training for a marathon is serious business.  It takes 18 weeks to complete; but once you cross that finish line, you’re hooked and begin thinking of your next race.  I also like the outdoors, as in hiking, bike riding, fishing, camping and the like.  Being outdoors gives you a sense of your place in the world.

WCN: What are your goals for the Fall 2014 Semester?

Ted: I hope to learn all I can to become part of the Wright College community.

Welcome, Ted!


Aug 222014

Below is a selection of presentations from Faculty Development Week 2014.

For a recap of Faculty Development Week 2014, please click here.

For images from FDW 14, please click here.


August 12, 2014

Welcome Back (David Potash)

Wait, Wait, Do Tell Me (Kevin Li)

Holistic Placement Supporting the Whole Student at Wright College (Kevin Li, Steve Robbins, and Sam Rikoon)

Center for Teaching & Learning, Fall 2014 (Alicia Anzaldo and Tracy Mitchell)

AQIP Action Projects at Wright College, 2014 -2015 (Kevin Li)


August 13, 2014

CCSSE/CCFFSSE, 2005 -2014 (Brian Trzebiatowski)


August 14, 2014

Productive Persistence & the Student Mindset Intervention
(Kevin Li and Mira Kolodkin)

PACC : Proposed Academic Curriculum Changes
(Core Team: Mr. Rich Chandler, Mr. Andrew Flesch, Dr. Polly Hoover, Dr. Maria Jaskot-Inclan, Dr. Ileo Lott, Dr. Pervez Rahman, Dr. Sonia Ramirez, and Mr. Ivan Tejeda)




Aug 222014


By Guest Blogger Kevin Li, Wright College Dean of Instruction

IMG_3090Faculty Development Week 2014 (FDW) was a great success!  Thanks to Herculean efforts on the part of many staff and administrators, the district-wide gathering on Monday ran smoothly. Tuesday started with addresses from President Potash and the new Vice President, Nicole Reaves. We were given an overview of trends, accomplishments, and upcoming planning, particularly space planning. Dr. Reaves offered, through a game-show presentation, details about her life, including information about her educational background and her first dog.

IMG_3110Another game show followed, the tried and true “Wait Wait, Do Tell Me”, with a book giveaway sponsored by the Title V grant. Faculty were quizzed on many facets of Wright College, including its illustrious history with synchronized swimming, AQIP categories, and whether the Veterans Services Specialist is Ed Harris, Mike Davis, Ed Davis, or Ed Norton.

Steve Robbins, Director of Reach an Innovation at ETS, joined me to share a presentation about Holistic Placement. Recent data indicate that acceleration based on more robust data, including cognitive and non-cognitive indicators, does no harm to students, and potentially moves them through or out of developmental education, thus increasing their chances of success.

IMG_3252Alicia Anzaldo and Tracy Mitchell shared the good news on the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL), which was only an idea a year ago, and now is an orange and blue room with a book collection, 23 upcoming sessions and four book clubs. Last year, the CTL welcomed 272 participants.

This year, FDW featured “poster sessions” for student support services. In response to faculty input after last year’s FDW, the Office of Instruction facilitated two days of poster sessions, where each Wright College department could share their offerings and programming to mingling faculty via a representative and a poster.

In addition to Steve Robbins, mentioned above, other visiting presenters included our HLC Liaison, Linnea Stenson, who gave an overview of the different pathways, including AQIP, and Krista Jackson – who visited us via video conference – to outline IAI (Illinois Articulation Initiative) updates.

IMG_3164Break-out sessions allowed faculty to pursue their own interests, and ranged in topics from hidden habitats in Costa Rica to embedded tutoring and non-cognitive interventions in the classroom.

Presentations and photos from FDW 14 are available for your review and enjoyment.

Again, thank you to everyone who dedicated their time, creativity, energy and resources to ensuring FDW 14 was a dynamic and engaging experience. We will administer a survey to gain further data on faculty perceptions of the week.


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