ACTC staff helping students with variety of needs
May 11, 2020
This is the sixth installment in a series of employee spotlights for Ashland Community and Technical College to highlight how faculty and staff are helping students while working remotely.
Despite the change in delivery method, ACTC’s employees are dedicated to providing the best support possible to its students.
Name: Miranda Diamond
City of Residence: Louisa, Ky.
Education: AA from ACTC
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: I am the Ready To Work program’s career support specialist and I works with pre-college students in both Boyd and Greenup counties. I help students who are in DCBS’s KTAP program and who are either currently working on their GED or have barriers that bar them from enrolling in school (such as having a default loan or owing money to the Kentucky Department of Revenue) to overcome those barriers so they can enroll in ACTC courses. I help students who are in the program to meet their work requirements by helping them find a part-time job placement which is paid for by the program. I also help to ensure that students comply with the education requirement by monitoring their attendance with SkillsU or their completion of another approved curriculum.
How long have you been with ACTC? I had worked at ACTC previously but came back to the college in this position in November 2019.
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? ACTC changes lives for the better. I love to help people, so I like working with a student from the beginning of their journey and moving them step-by-step toward their goal. Education has been an important constant in my life, and ACTC looks at students more holistically than other schools might, and that allows students more avenues for success.
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? In my new position, I have been nominated once for the Employee Success Nominee and I have received nominations in my previous positions.
How would your co-workers describe you? They would describe me as friendly and a team player.
Who is your biggest role model and why: Steve Irwin is my role model. I love how gentle he was with each animal and the respect he had for each creature. He always wanted to learn more about them, and no matter how badly the creature he was connecting with was villainized by the world, he educated others about that creature’s importance in the ecosystem. He showed us that the unloved can be loved. Irwin showed us that in order to understand others, we have to learn about each other with open minds, not allowing preconceived notions to dictate our interactions. He looked at life as a passion project in which his goal was to advocate for those who couldn’t advocate for themselves. I think that Irwin could look back on his life’s legacy and proclaim, “Crikey! Isn’t it a beaute?”
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is… That you matter. Even if your life has taken you in a vastly different direction than what you had anticipated, even if you find yourself in the wilderness when you feel you should be cruising down the highway by now, you are a human being with a story. Be kind to yourself and know that we are here to support you right where you’re at.
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? I am keeping in contact with each of my students to make sure that I address any questions they may have and to make sure that they are still breaking down barriers keeping them from enrolling in school. The Ready To Work department is meeting weekly to address student needs, and we meet with all of the RTW coordinators across the state each week as well.
Name: Rose French
City of Residence: Ashland, Ky.
Education: Ashland Community College, AAS Office Systems; Ashland Community and Technical College, AA/AS; Morehead State University, BA University Studies.
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: Admissions/records; process applications, assist students with the admissions process, send transcripts, etc.
How long have you been with ACTC? 20 years.
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? Helping others, especially when someone walks in with a scared look. I enjoy helping them find a more relaxed look.
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? With the encouragement and support of my ACTC family, I earned three of my degrees while working.
How would your co-workers describe you? Most likely, talkative.
Who is your biggest role model and why: My mother. She was the most humble and loving person I have ever known. She was a strong woman and I learned much from her.
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is…You are not too old, nor are you too ignorant, to go to college!
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? I am still processing applications and sending transcripts, electronically, as I am unable to mail them right now. I have been monitoring and responding to emails. Assisting students and coworkers in any way I can.
Name: Cara Huff
City of Residence: Ashland, Ky.
Education: Morehead State University, M.A. 2009; University of Kentucky, B.S. 1987.
Role(s) at ACTC and how you interact with students: Advisor at Technology Drive Campus since 2018; outreach coordinator 2010-2018; recruitment specialist and GED examiner 1995-2010.
How long have you been with ACTC? I just celebrated my 25th year right before quarantine!
What are your favorite things about working at ACTC? The family-like atmosphere and the work we do in making a positive impact on our students lives.
Special accomplishments while working at ACTC? Going back to school as an adult to pursue my Master of Arts in Adult and Higher Education. Having to juggle working full-time, with three young children at the time, enabled me to be reminded of what so many of our students are challenged with while enrolled at ACTC.
How would your co-workers describe you? I would hope they say I’m a team-player who is helpful in nature and easy to work with.
Who is your biggest role model and why: There’s not one in particular, I’ve been inspired by so many former colleagues here at the college whom I admired and had great respect.
If the students I work with learn one thing, I hope it is… Stay focused on that end result of achieving your goal – whether it be a short-term certificate or advanced degree. Keep working toward it and use any roadblocks as learning experiences and celebrate your successes!
How are you assisting students during the pandemic and what should students know about your area of service during this time? I am working remotely from home as long as we are so directed, and I can best be reached by email! We will get through this, hopefully sooner than later!