Faculty & Staff Newsletter

July 20, 2020 Special Edition

Enrollment Update

Submitted by Lori Edgeworth

Hello from the Office of Admissions! The Office of Admissions staff continues to stay very busy recruiting for Fall20 20. With help from all of campus, we have offered and continue to offer virtual open houses called Healthcare Worker Wednesday. On July 8 we had over 150 RSVPs for HWW and continue to collect RSVPs for the upcoming events on July 22 and August 5.

Additionally, we will be working with the Physician Assistant program faculty and staff to host an MPAS Virtual Fair on July 22 that runs from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Prospective students can log in to learn more about the program directly from Dr. Dawn LaBarbara, Dr. Trevor Bates, Dr. Justin Ways, and Dr. Jennifer Cruz. There will also be several chat sessions where students can chat with Amy Mergen by submitting questions and receive real-time answers.

Lastly, we are continuing to work on our reporting and communication pathways with all program directors. We have created a new reporting comparison as well as a cumulative outreach report that is to be shared with program directors on Mondays each week. This will allow us to assess how our initiatives are working in addition to being nimble and capitalize on new opportunities as they present themselves.

As always if you have any questions about admissions, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Have a great week!

Financial Aid: The financial aid office is continuing to prepare financial aid offers and notifying students for the fall semester.

Strategic Planning: The Strategic Planning and Budgeting Council is meeting on Friday, July 17 to review the Strategic Plan and make updates to the plan. It will be shared with faculty and staff on the August 19 Planning day. Once it is vetted with faculty and staff and the updates are made, it will be presented to the Board of Trustees for their approval at the September Board meeting.

Strategic Enrollment Committee: The draft Strategic Enrollment plan is in the final stages of review. It is planned that this will be reviewed with faculty and staff at the August 19 Planning day for input and comment. Implementation of the plan is set to begin in September for the Spring 2021 recruitment and beyond.

On Monday and Tuesday, July 27 and 28, a consultant from Ruffalo Noel Levitz with be conducting a virtual visit with the Admission and Marketing teams and the Strategic Enrollment Committee. As you may recall, in 2018 RNL visited the campus and provided us with an assessment of recruitment, retention, and marketing at that time. This is a follow-up visit and they will be updating the information they provided in 2018. I will provide an update to the College Community on their visit on August 19.

Mary Kay Meyer, Director of Enrollment Cincinnati, retired effective Tuesday, July 14. The position has been approved and is posted. I will continue to keep the College updated on the recruiting process.

If you have any questions or need anything from me or anyone in Enrollment, please do not hesitate to send an email or call.

Stay safe and hope to see you all soon😊


New Process for Maintenance and Housekeeping Requests

Submitted by Sherri Boggs

Greetings and happy summer to all!

A new process for maintenance and housekeeping requests will be going into effect beginning August 1, 2020. In the past, I have been the person to contact for requests for maintenance and housekeeping needs. I then would contact the appropriate personnel in maintenance and or housekeeping to complete the request. Regularly scheduled meetings were held monthly with both maintenance and housekeeping supervisors for updates on the requests. In order to expedite requests employees will now send the requests directly to the maintenance and housekeeping supervisors by completing the appropriate forms.

For maintenance needs complete the Engineering Maintenance form and for housekeeping needs complete the Work Request Support Services (Housekeeping) form. Upon completing the fields within the form and selecting submit the form will go directly to the appropriate supervisor to be completed. These forms are conveniently located on the College landing page on the HUB and within the Faculty & Staff/Forms section on the College website.

If you have an urgent need such as a water leak or heating/air conditioning issues, etc. you should call Jamie Babcock at 419-260-2047 rather than submit a form. If the need is NOT urgent please do not call Jamie – use the engineering maintenance form to cut down on calls to him.

For housekeeping contact information see the Contact Information for Housekeeping. Housekeeping personnel are also available using email: (Latoya Jordan – Supervisor) and (Jennifer Balliet – Lead).

I will continue to meet with the maintenance and housekeeping supervisors monthly in order to keep the lines of communication open. Feel free to contact me at any time if you have questions or need assistance with this new process.

Sherri Boggs
Office: 419-251-1865

What's Happening in Student Affairs

Submitted by Marc Adkins

The effort to address social and racial injustice is on-going. This can be a challenging and difficult time for many, so for students, faculty, and staff who are in need of support, resources are available. Please see below.

Counseling and Wellness - contact Suzanne Hall at (419) 251-1454 or In Youngstown, contact Ann Bair at (330) 480-2874 or Also, please access the Counseling & Wellness page or the Student Success folder on Canvas.

Campus Ministry and Pastoral Care - contact Annie Devine at (419) 251-1866,, or Campus Ministry page.

Life Matters – (Faculty & Staff) - Employees can call 877-692-7780 or text “Hello” to 61295. Additional information for Life Matters can be found on the Mercy Health Hub.

Safety & Security

Faculty re-entry plans for the fall semester are being finalized. Staff re-entry plans are finalized with the expected return-to-campus date as Monday, August 3rd. The return to campus will be a slow, controlled, phased approach and will involve separate rotation staffing plans from each division.

As stated in the President’s Message, for the fall semester all coursework and services will be delivered virtually with labs on campus. All clinicals will be at the respective clinical sites. All on-campus activities (labs) will conclude before Thanksgiving.

Many of the safety measures being utilized at the college this summer will remain and be extended to other parts of campus. All safety measures implemented at the college has, and will, follow the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (AICUO) and State of Ohio Governor’s office guidelines for higher education.

Student Life

Congratulations to the Hoffman Ambassadors, Leaders Scholars & SGA representatives for the 2020-2021 academic year.

Hoffman Ambassadors
Iesha Bass – ASN
Jennifer Chesser – BSN
Audra Figueroa – ASN (Youngstown)
Larissa Huffman – Healthcare Administration
Bernadette McRae-Elliott – ASN (Youngstown)

Leaders Scholars
Jennifer Garcia – BSN
Steffany Grine – RAD
Erica Joseph – ASN (Evening/Weekend)

Student Government Association
Kelsey Sullivan – President
Matt Norris – Vice President
Dania Alvarado – Director of Communication

The dates for the Student Leader Retreat, which will be delivered virtually, will be announced soon!

If you, or students you are aware, have food insecurity issues, please contact Annie Devine at or the Food Pantry page. Food pantry inquires can also be found in the Campus Life folder on Canvas.

Due to the COVID-19 situation and the revised fall schedule, it has been decided that the Day of Service will be postponed until 2021.

Diversity & Inclusion

The interview process concluded with a recommendation for a candidate being passed on to Human Resources on Thursday, July 9th. Human Resources is expected to make the offer the week of July 13th. An anticipated start date will be late August or early September.

Academic Support
A reminder that with summer classes please do not hesitate to direct your students to available resources. Academic support resources, such as tutoring in Nursing or other related disciplines (Sciences, Math & Writing) are available by contacting the Student Success Center at (419) 251-1734,, or accessing the Student Success webpage. In Youngstown, you can contact Somia Abou-Osman at (330) 480-3145 or

Students have access to Smarthinking, the FREE, 24/7 online tutoring software that is available through Canvas. Also, on Canvas you will find the Student Success folder that houses resources as well as other helpful materials.

Accessibility & Testing Services

The Accessibility Services Office continues to serve all students remotely. New students are also being provided with services, information, meetings, etc. The remote office is open during normal business hours.

The design of accommodations is to provide not only equal access to the learning environment but also the same opportunities and experiences that all students have during college. Currently, with all classes being online, there may be some accommodations that may not apply in this situation, such as distraction reduced space or private space. Because we have no control over the student’s environment, it is up to the student to find/create such a space at home. The accommodations that are currently being provided online are:

  • Extra Test Time - the amount of time to take the test can be adjusted in Canvas for individual students according to the amount of extra time that is provided.
  • Screen Reader Program – all students who have been provided with this accommodation have access to the screen reader program on any of their devices and have been provided with instructions on how to set it up. We also offer to work with students to assist them with training. The screen reader program that the college uses, Texthelp Read and Write, works with Canvas.
  • Breaks - students are provided 1-2 breaks during testing for various reasons. If students tested at the Testing Center, they would need to signal to the proctor that they needed a break. The proctor would retrieve the student from the testing room, and walk them to the restroom/kitchen. Students were not permitted to leave the area, could not have their phones, etc.

Accommodations for paper based/computer testing should first be made in the classroom, unless time and/or environment does not allow for uninterrupted testing. Because all students are taking courses online, all students should be tested in the same environment if possible. Please let Christine Miller know if you need any assistance or need to discuss student accommodations as they relate to your course and the requirements.

Testing Services is currently closed (both locations). The only “testing” being provided online is the Accuplacer math placement assessment for new students. Because the proctor must have control of the student’s desktop (as well as sharing the screen) to be able to provide the test, they cannot test more than one student at a time and the time for this test is unlimited. Prior, when proctoring course exams in the Testing Center, proctors were proctoring several different paper/computer exams for different courses at the same time. We are not able to do this at this time, and the Testing Center does not proctor entire classes.

Currently the plan (subject to change) is that the Testing Center will not be open for fall semester as courses are being provided online. Students who are not on campus should not be required to travel to campus to take a test. Until we can provide testing for makeups, tests with accommodations, etc. as before, we will not be open.

We will be glad to notify you of any changes as I am informed. In the meantime, feel free to contact Shelly Clark at 419-251-2106 for testing related questions or Christine Miller at 419-251-1784.

Academic Affairs Updates

Intellectual Inquiry – Life-Long Learning

According to the Webster dictionary, as a verb, to Educate means to give intellectual, moral, and social instruction to (someone), typically at a school or university. As educators, we are obligated to do more than teach skills, facts, and figures, we must teach students how to critically navigate the complexity of potential circumstances they will encounter that will cause collisions between different aspects of their personal and professional lives. I offer a quote from Carl Rogers that resonates during the times we live in today, “The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn …and change.” My diverse life experiences have taught me that survival and success are different but inexplicably connected as one typically does not occur without the other and constant change is necessary for us all. Based on this information, I offer the question, “[How] are you continually educating yourself and others?”

1. Faculty Facts - Did you Know?

  • Hyperflex Teaching - Faculty have been instructed to prepare for the Fall with the anticipation that disruption could occur similar to what we experienced in March based on the COVID-19 situation.
    • We pray that disruption will not occur, but Faculty are in a better position to anticipate the disruption and adjust in the most effective ways possible to ensure student learning continues.
  • 164 Adjunct Faculty members are employed by the College to teach in all programs/areas. Each member plays an essential role in educating students in the classroom, clinicals, labs, practicums, and more.
    • Moving forward, adjunct faculty will begin receiving all Mercy College newsletter updates and other helpful updates from the College beyond their teaching area/program.
  • 1st (ever) Summer Faculty Assembly Meeting was held on July 13, 2020.
      • Discussion topics included updates on the Fall planning, Faculty Development, and new resources that are available and in the works to support teaching and learning during the pandemic.

2. Academic Search Committees

    • Suspended searches in English and Mathematics
    • Anticipated searches for a Nursing Skills Lab Assistant and Administrative Coordinator for Academic Affairs
    • Ongoing searches are occurring for positions in Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies.
      • Thank you and please continue to participate as requested in virtual search processes.

3. Process / Document / Contract Review

    • Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog review deadline is July 17, 2020.
      • A new Leave Policy for students is currently under review and will be placed in the 2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalogs.
    • Monitoring progress on adding a proctoring service, ProctorU®, that will allow faculty a secure method to assign/complete remote testing in their courses.
      • The goal is to have this in place for Fall 2020.
    • Program Handbooks and Faculty and Staff Handbook will undergo an administrative review only for 2019-2020.

4. Assessment & Accreditation

    • The EMT-B and Paramedic program have a Virtual Site Visit this week, June 21 – 23 with the Ohio Department of Public Safety.
    • A required annual report for the Master of Health Administration program was submitted by June 30, 2020.
    • The developing Master of Physician Studies Program (MPAS) completed its initial accreditation site visit with ARC-PA occurred on June 8-9, 2020,
      • The developing MPAS team has responded to observations noted during the virtual site visit and we expect to receive a response from the ARC-PA in September 2020 regarding next steps.
    • A proposal was sent in May to the Higher Learning Commission and Ohio Department of Higher Education for the College to transition from a 16-week to a 15-week academic calendar in 2021-2022.

5. Faculty Assembly

    • The Faculty Development Committee is working with administration to prepare a Virtual Faculty Development Day on August 18, 2020.
      • The theme of the day is “Teaching: Tools and Tips”

6. Academic Administration Projects

  • Reviewing strategic priorities and reorganizing efforts to add and improve efficiency measures.
  • Developed and submitted a detailed plan for Fall on-campus teaching activities that was presented to the President and Incident Commander on July 3, 2020.
  • The College Library Director has:
    • enhanced the Library website and services for faculty, staff, and student use, take a look -
    • worked with Mercy Health Grant writers to submit a grant for potential CARES Act funding specifically for College Libraries.
  • The Academic Program Review process is being finalized.
    • Next steps will involved Academic Program Directors and Deans reaching out to campus offices to discuss collaborative ways to improve support and success for academic programs.
  • Engaging in discussion regarding General Education Philosophy through potential curricular changes for all future students.
  • Contributing to the review and completion of the new Strategic Enrollment Plan for the College that will be share with the community in the Fall 2020.
  • Center for Teaching and Learning Innovation – is a collaborative effort with Faculty Development, Distance Education, and Library Services within academic affairs.
    • The goal is for the center to connect existing and continually provide new resources for faculty to support ongoing teaching and learning development and improvement.
    • A Needs Assessment will be developed and distributed to Faculty in the Fall 2020.

Please direct any questions or comments about this sampling of Academic Affairs updates to Dr. Bates at


Send a message to Dr. Wajert using this link.

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