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August 15, 2001 - Palikir, Pohnpei

Update from the President's Office - No. 191

August 15, 2001


To:       All Regents, Faculty, Staff, and Students

From:     President

Subject:  Update from the President's Office-No.191

Micronesian Studies Program Graduate Ceremony.    The Social Sciences Division held a ceremony on August 3, 2001, in the AV Room to celebrate the successful completion of six (6) students in the Micronesian Studies Program. Students completing the program include: Rachel Bardelas, Pedra Obed, Lover Haimin, James Reblmwai, Neylon Eliezar, and Christiano Houmarek. Congratulations to all of you on your achievement!

Chuuk Campus bid announcement.   The Chuuk State Commission on Improvement Projects together with the College of Micronesia-FSM is inviting interested contractors to submit sealed bid proposals for the construction of COM-FSM Chuuk Campus Access Road/Utilities and other factors as indicated on the Project Plans. Sealed bids will be received at either the Office of the Director of Maintenance at the National Campus or at the COM-FSM Campus/Chuuk Director's Office on or before Monday, August 27, 2001, at 1:00 p.m. A pre-bid conference is scheduled to be held on Monday, August 13, 2001, at 1:00 p.m. at the Chuuk Star Conference Room in Weno, Chuuk. According to the proposed schedule, it is anticipated that a notice of award can be made by September 7, 2001, and a contract signed by September 14, 2001. Groundbreaking is tentatively scheduled for the first week in October.

Orientation.    Orientation for new students was held at the National Campus from August 6-10, 2001. Appreciation goes to Vice President for Support and Student Affairs Ringlen Ringlen, Director of Student Services Lore Nena, and all staff who assisted with the new student orientation held last week including the following: Lucia Donre, Eddie Haleyalig, Faustino Yarofaisug, Patricio Ramirez, Salter Barong, Benina Ilon, Henry Wilson, Morehna Santos, Pelma Palik, Francisco Mendiola, Joe Habuchmai, Benson Moses, Dakio Syne, Iris Falcam, Jenny Hainrick, Bastora Raymond, Charles Musana, Joe Felix, Mariana Ben, Paul Gallen, Richard Womack, Kiosy Phillip, Dana Lee Ling, Jonathan Gourlay, and Karl Brookins.

The 2001-2002 Peer Guides also deserve recognition for all that they have been doing to make our new students feel welcome. The following students are serving as Peer Guides: Rose Allen, Ketfa Bossy, Judie Yadfinay, Pensihda Jack, Nelly Ann A., Arcilla Chanelmog, Eileen Sabino, Steve Yarofalig, Stephanie Chutaro, Gloreen Malakai, Carmen T. Chon, Dallace Commor, Mike Ioanis, Deborah Nakayama, Jonathan Galmatau, Achena Finik, Yvonne Jim, Terry Dawe, Maria Falmad, Cathy Ezekiah, Francisca Talley, J.J. Fritz, Deethrynn Oliver, Monica Rogon, Arvin Yarofaligan, Glenn Danis, Joanie Haleyalmang, T.S. Silem, Peterson Chatin, Augustine Yauruw, James Lukan, Rachel Salomon, and Leilanie Welley.

Faculty workshops.    Workshops for the Division Chairs and faculty were held from August 6-10, 2001. Topics covered during the week included: instructional policies, roles of division chairpersons, personnel policies, fiscal policies, budget preparation, academic standards and guidelines, course outline development, the Student Support Services grant, the first year experience and learning communities, and performance-based budgeting. Special thanks to Vice President for Instructional Affairs Spensin James, Director of Academic Programs Joe Habuchmai, Director of Vocational Programs Brent Villiers, Acting Comptroller Pelma Palik, Director of Personnel Linda Maradol, Director of Research and Planning Greg Myers, Fran Chaine from Pohnpei Campus, and Ringlen Ringlen for leading various sessions during the week.

Board of Regents teleconference meeting.    A teleconference meeting of the COM-FSM Board of Regents was held on August 6, 2001, for the primary purpose of confirming the nomination of Mr. Danilo Dumantay as the new Comptroller. I am pleased to report that the Board confirmed Mr. Dumantay's nomination and that he is scheduled to come on board September 10, 2001.

Pohnpei Campus update.    Pohnpei Campus Assistant Director Jeffrey Arnold along with instructor Fran Chaine attended the "First Year Experience and Student in Transition Conference" in Hawaii during the early part of July. Heinrich Palik, Francis Simram, Lestley Ashby, Romino Victor, and Marcelino Martin participated in the FSM Games in Yap.

Twenty-two (22) students completed the 2nd level of the Career Guidance Training program during the month. Acting COM-FSM President Spensin James, Pohnpei State Director of Education Casiano Shoniber, and various school principals were present to witness the ceremony honoring these students.

On July 27, 2001, sixteen (16) children received certificates for completing the Kids Summer Computer Class which was held from June 18 through July 26, 2001.

Pohnpei Campus Orientation is scheduled for August 8th with placement tests to be administered the following day. Registration is scheduled throughout the week of August 13th. On Friday, August 17, 2001, all Pohnpei Campus staff, faculty and students will assemble for a general meeting in the nahs at 9:00 a.m.

During the month of July, the Assistant Director, instructor Fe "Pinky" Pulmano, and Student Services Coordinator Patterson Shed visited National, State, and Municipal Government offices, agencies, corporations, and small businesses to recruit students for the certificate programs, specifically the Secretarial Science Program.

According to the July monthly report from the Talent Search Program, 68 TSP seniors and 261 TSP eighth-graders graduated this year. According to program data, approximately 90% of the TSP seniors are planning to enroll at COM-FSM at either the National Campus or Pohnpei Campus. During the month of July the program concentrated on providing services to students who had dropped out of high school in an effort to support their re-entry. These services will continue through August 16, 2001.

The Upward Bound Program is offering a summer session for UB students which is being held from 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. daily. The schedule includes five (5) hours of classroom instruction, two (2) hours of cultural studies, and one (1) hour of activities and games each day. Activities include sports tournaments, fund-raising, picnics, and community services.

Ninety (90) farmers and other individuals were assisted through eight (8) different agriculture and agriculture-related programs during the month of July, 2001. Activities were conducted in the following areas: crop production and marketing information; assistance with the Leaf-footed bug on cucumber crops; assistance with bacteria wilt afflicting tomato plants; swine improvement; home gardening; banana production; black pepper production; and false sakau.

FSM Fisheries and Maritime Institute.    According to the June/July report from FSM Fisheries and Maritime Institute (FMI) Director Matthias Ewarmai, graduation ceremonies for the second Restricted Class 6 Master/Engineer Course took place on June 19th with 19 students out of the original 23 completing the course. Of the nineteen (19) graduates, fifteen (15) are from Yap, three (3) are from Chuuk, and one (1) is from Kosrae.

The Multi-Purpose Rating Course began on July 9, 2001, with twenty-two (22) students including the following: six (6) from the Micro Spirit, three (3) each from the Micro Trader and Micro Dawn, four (4) from the Micro Glory, and six (6) from the Caroline Islands. The Safety Courses were completed prior to beginning the Multi-Purpose Rating Course.

Matthias attended a JICA counterpart training program in Japan from June 24 - July 12, 2001. While in Japan, he visited a one-year vocational high school for fisheries, a fisheries high school, the fishing port of Yaizu in Shizuoka Prefecture which includes fish markets with fish auctions, a fish processing complex, and the National Fisheries University at Shimonoseki.

In the early part of July, a tropical depression passed over Yap, and although there was no major damage to FMI from the strong winds, the awning for the Institute's training boat, Cassiopeaia, was blown away as some of the instructors were attempting to move her to a sheltered area. Also lost was the antenna for the boat's VHF radio. JICA is looking for a replacements for the antenna and awning.

The FSM FMI was host to twelve (12) FSM Games official during the games.The facilities renovation work continues to progress slowly due to intermittent rain showers which have slowed the roof repair project.

Regional Maritime Training Advisor Captain John P. Hogan of the Regional Maritime Program of the South Pacific Community visited FMI to: (a) familiarize himself with the Institute; (b) seek further projects and endorsement of other projects for which the Regional Maritime Program (RMP) could seek donors; and (c) conduct a trial audit of the maritime training institutions in the region to see whether such institutions are in compliance with Quality Manuals required by the STCW Convention, as amended. The trial audit report for FMI shows that the Institute has made good progress in the short time that it has been in operation. The report also pointed out areas that can be strengthened.

According to Matthias, one day each week has been designated as "Activities Day" in which all students and staff participate in activities such as sports, community projects, or cultural festivities. These activities are being scheduled to provide a sense of belonging and to provide an opportunity for the staff and students to associate with neighboring communities.

Telephone audit.    Executive Assistant to the President Norma Edwin has distributed forms as part of a telephone audit to be conducted at the National Campus. We are all aware that the current phone system leaves much to be desired. I am constantly being told by members of the community how difficult it is to reach anyone at the National Campus. We are working with FSM Telecom and are considering the lease or possible purchase of a new phone system. To plan for the new system, we must determine the number and types of phones needed. I encourage everyone to complete the audit form and return it to Norma's box by Friday, August 17, 2001.

Trip to Yap and Chuuk.   I will be leaving Tuesday, August 14, 2001, to travel to Yap to visit the FSM FMI and Yap Campus. I will also be stopping for a couple of days in Chuuk before returning to Pohnpei on August 22, 2001. During my absence Vice President for Instructional Affairs Spensin James will be acting. Thank you for your cooperation with Spensin during this time

Personnel.    The College is pleased to welcome three (3) new instructors at the National Campus including: Robert Bruff - English; Gregg Longanecker - math; and Dennis Gearhart - math. We are glad to have you with us!

We are also pleased to welcome Chauncy Eady, a Peace Corps Volunteer, who has joined the Student Activities program to help develop long-term sports programs and assist in the development of programs for the new multi-purpose gymnasium.

Congratulations to Languages and Literature Division Chair Jonathan Gourlay and his wife Roslyn who are the proud parents of a baby girl, Marianna Jellies Gourlay, who arrived at 10:30 a.m. August 7, 2001, weighing in at 6 lbs. 3 oz. Both mother and baby are doing fine.

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