MPHS band gets top rating

Mountain Pointe High School’s Wind Ensemble earned a rating of “Superior” at the ABODA State Concert Festival. This rating includes a “Superior” score for Sight Reading.

The Jazz Ensemble, under the direction of Michael Epping, received a rating of “Excellent” at the ABODA State Jazz Festival.


Creative writing course offered at SMCC

Iliana Rocha is offering CRW 150: Introduction to Creative Writing from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Mondays and Wednesdays, June 7 to July 29, at the South Mountain Community College Ahwatukee Foothills Center, 10429 S. 51st St., Suite 101.

Registration for summer and fall 2010 classes is open. To review a class listing and enroll, visit

Seton Catholic hosting junior basketball camp

for girls

The Seton Catholic Preparatory State Championship basketball team will host the Junior Sentinels Basketball Camp from 8:30 a.m. to noon June 7 to 11 on the campus at 1150 N. Dobson Road, Chandler.

The camp is open to girls in grades 6 to 9 for the 2009-10 school year, and the fee is $65. A session will also be offered from 1 to 3 p.m. for girls in grades 3 to 6. The cost is $35. 

The deadline to register is June 2. Registration forms are available online (follow the tab for “Athletics” then “Seton Summer Athletic Camps”).

For more information, contact Coach Karen Self at (480) 545-4309 or e-mail


DV marching band selected for 2011 Fiesta Bowl National Band Championship

The Desert Vista High School marching band has accepted an invitation to participate in next year’s Fiesta Bowl National Band Championship. The top two finishers in this year’s 2009 Arizona State Marching Band Championship were invited to the national championship for the 2010-11 school year. Desert Vista placed second in this year’s state competition with a score of 83.5. All members who join the 2010-11 marching band will attend the competition on Dec. 30. 

The band is looking for sponsors to support their extended season to participate in nationals.

For more information or to sponsor, e-mail Julie Smith at


Summer tech fun at Arizona State University

If you’re looking for something fun and challenging for your children this summer, consider sending them to a summer technology program at the Arizona State University. At iD Tech Camps students ages 7 to 17 engage in a hands-on technology project and are shown first-hand how they can turn their hobbies into a career. Over 100,000 students have created video games, iPhone apps, websites with Flash, digital movies, robots, C++ and Java programs and 3D models with Maya with products experts use in their professions. 

The weeklong, day and residential summer camps are located at 60 prestigious universities in the U.S. and Canada, including Arizona State University, UCLA, Stanford, Harvard, Princeton, MIT and more. Special Teen programs include iD Gaming Academy, iD Visual Arts Academy and iD Programming Academy.  As a special perk to iD Tech Camps students, there are free year-round learning with iD 365, monthly online workshops taught by live instructors.

Seven-week sessions at Arizona State University start the week of June 13 and go through July 30.

For more information, visit or call 1-888-709- TECH (8324).


Citi to provide new refund options for students at Maricopa Colleges

Maricopa Community College students will soon have options to receive refunds beyond the issuance of a paper check they have to cash.

Beginning this summer, students will be able to have refunds, including financial aid, direct deposited into their banking account, or they can enroll in a free Visa prepaid debit card program with Citi Prepaid Services.

Dubbed the Maricopa Student Refund Program (MSRP), the new service will be available online via a link in the student center at

More information is available by calling (480) 731-8503.


Host families needed

Volunteers - with or without children at home - are needed to share their hearts and homes with international high school exchange students for the upcoming fall semester or school year. The students are part of the SHARE! High School Exchange Program sponsored by ERDT, a global nonprofit educational foundation.

The students are from more than 25 countries and will arrive in August. They need caring adults or families to provide a home and share the experience. The host family will provide a bed and meals, as well as friendship, understanding and a genuine desire to share the American way of life with a youngster from overseas.

The students are between the ages of 15 and 18, speak English, are covered by medical insurance and have spending money for their personal expenses. They will attend the high school closest to their host family’s home.

Families are able to review student applications and select the student they feel is the best match.

For more information, call Yvette at (800) 941-3738 or visit


Registration open for full day kindergarten at Bethany

Bethany Learning Center, a ministry of Bethany Community Church at 6240 S. Price Road in Tempe, is currently accepting registration for its full day kindergarten (8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) for the 2010/11 school year. The fall semester begins Aug. 30.

Preschool programs for ages 15 months thru pre-K 5’s are also available.

A summer preschool program for ages 15 months thru kindergarten runs June 1 to Aug. 20. A summer day camp geared for grades one through six is also offered and includes field trips and weekly swimming. This program runs June 1 thru Aug. 6.

For more information, call (480) 838-2440 or visit


Altadena students excel at science and math competitions

A team from Altadena Middle School recently competed in the State Science Olympiad Competition. Team members were Stephen Gerrish, Katelyn Miyasaki, Carmela Chaney, Michael Solomentsev, Alex Burton, Rajeev Parvathala, Joseph Chen, Jason Zheng, Michael Chen, Varun Gupta, Ruthvick Gondola, Michael Shin and Jay Raju. The students prepared for the competition for several weeks at school and on their own time. Awards were given for winning teams in each event as well as an overall team award. Out of 19 events entered, Altadena teams placed in the top five in 13 of the events with four first place winners. The events covered a variety of topics including Ecology, Fossils, Crime Scene Busters and Disease Detectives. Altadena placed sixth overall out of 30 teams competing. Mrs. Kaminer and Mrs. Crowder sponsored the team.

Altadena students also participated in State Science Bowl at Arizona State University. Eighteen teams competed, and only eight made it to the finals. Out of the 18 teams, only two teams were from public schools. The Altadena team came in fifth place overall. The students who competed were Katelyn Miyasaki, Michael Solomentsev, Sean Park and Varun Gupta. The students studied for months for the competition under the guidance of Mrs. Joshu and Mrs. Kaminer.

The Altadena Math Counts Team won fifth place in regional competition and was invited to attend the statewide competition. Team members are Gen Fitzgerald, Joyce Yang, Paula Li and Gina Han. Katelyn Miyasaki was the alternate. There were over 200 students competing and about 40 teams.

Altadena placed ninth out of 21 teams at the State MathCounts competition in Vail, Arizona. The Altadeña team was made up of Joyce Yang, Gen Fitzgerald, Paula Li and Gina Han. Fitzgerald placed 18th overall and Joyce Yang was 23rd overall. The students competing were the top 100 from the whole state. Mrs. Nielsen is always looking for new Altadena students to join the MathCounts team.


Summit School of Ahwatukee preschool earns national NAEYC re-accreditation

Summit School of Ahwatukee’s preschool has earned re-accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) – the nation’s leading organization of early childhood professionals, scoring 100% on all ten NAEYC program standards.

To earn NAEYC Accreditation, Summit’s preschool went through an extensive self-study process, measuring the program and its services against the ten NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards, more than 400 related Accreditation Criteria, and a site visit by NAEYC Assessors.

Summit School of Ahwatukee’s elementary and middle school is also accredited, through the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI), an accreditation division of AdvancED.


CGCC launches online literary journal

Chandler-Gilbert Community College recently published its first online art and literary journal, The Gila River Review.  Edited entirely by a student staff, the journal includes poetry, fiction, personal essays, visual art and music, all created by CGCC students, faculty, staff and alumni of the college’s Creative Writing program.

The Gila River Review may be accessed at

For more information, e-mail Patrick Finn at


Words O.F.F. the Page Aid for Books Program now accepting applications

Dedicated to assisting students with the pursuit of higher education, The Ortiz Family Foundation is proud to support deserving Arizona community college students through the Words O.F.F. the Page Aid for Books Program.

The 4th Annual Words O.F.F. the Page Aid for Books Program grants applicants the opportunity to offset the rising costs of textbooks and educational supplies. Recipients will receive a $500 gift certificate to purchase textbooks and supplies at their college bookstore for two consecutive semesters.

The Ortiz Family Foundation invites graduating high school seniors planning to attend an Arizona community college in the fall as well as current Arizona community college students with a 3.0 GPA or higher to apply for the Words O.F.F. the Page Aid for Books program. Students must be residents of the United States with a valid social security number.

All applications must be sent electronically to prior to the June 28 deadline. Award recipients will be announced Aug. 2.

For details and a downloadable application, visit


Teacher Residency in Teacher Leadership for Special Educators Program

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is challenging teachers throughout the country to transform their teaching practices. It’s tough to achieve equitable outcomes for all students. Disparities in achievement persist for several student groups, particularly those whose backgrounds, experience and languages are perceived as different or deficient. “School,” as we have traditionally envisioned it, doesn’t work for all kids. 

Here in the Valley of the Sun a teacher leadership program is changing all that. In three professional learning schools, certified, experienced teachers are working as teacher residents alongside teacher peers to become accomplished teacher leaders for culturally responsive, inclusive schools. Teacher residents pay for their year’s residency through financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education. At the end of the year, they receive a Master’s degree in Special Education and are fully qualified to work in general and special education settings using cognitive coaching, group practice and teacher inquiry as tools to create high performing classroom for Tier 1, 2 and 3 interventions, pedagogy and assessment. Faculty in this program are internationally recognized researchers and teacher educators who work in schools each week alongside the teacher residents. 

Funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Programs, the MA program is accepting new students to join its professional community learning schools communities beginning July 6. Applications are being accepted now.

For more information, contact Lisa Arter or Elizabeth Kozleski at (480) 965-0391 or


CGCC, NAU partner to offer Business Administration degree

Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Northern Arizona University are expanding their partnership to include a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree. This degree program will allow students to complete their first two years of study at CGCC and then transfer to NAU to complete the last two years of their coursework - all without leaving CGCC’s Pecos campus at 2626 E. Pecos Road, Chandler. The program will be delivered in a hybrid format, in which some classes will be delivered on campus, while others will be offered online. 

CGCC currently partners with NAU to offer a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, a Bachelor of Science in Special and Elementary Education and a 90/30 program which allows students to take their first 90 credits at CGCC and their final 30 credits through NAU to earn a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies.

For more information, contact Deanna Hughes at (480) 732-7243 or


Diocese of Phoenix Catholic Schools Office announces Night of Hope fundraiser

Friends and supporters of the Diocese of Phoenix’s Catholic Schools will gather for the third annual “Night of Hope, Our Children’s Future” fundraising dinner event at 6 p.m. Oct 23 at the Sheraton Phoenix Downtown. All proceeds will benefit the Diocese of Phoenix Catholic Schools Endowment Fund.

Besides the proceeds from the cost of a ticket ($100 per person and up), Night of Hope will add to the endowment fund by offering sponsorship opportunities for local businesses the night of the event. Last year the event raised more than $75,000.

For more information, visit and follow the Night of Hope link.


More Maricopa Community College students eligible to save tuition money at ASU

A partnership program between the Maricopa Community Colleges and Arizona State University is now available to more students majoring in more subjects than ever.

The Maricopa-ASU Pathways Program (MAPP) has been expanded from 31 to 50 of the most popular majors among Maricopa Community College students who transfer to ASU. That means Maricopa students who sign up for a MAPP can potentially save thousands of dollars in tuition throughout their student years. They can do so by taking part in a cost-saving incentive at ASU called the Tuition Commitment Program that provides predictable increases of no more than 5% on tuition during completion of their bachelor’s degree at ASU.

The MAPP is an excellent option for students who are decided on a major and plan to transfer to ASU to earn a bachelor’s degree. This program includes the specific coursework that allows students attending one of the Maricopa Community Colleges to transfer to ASU without loss of credit. Each MAPP represents the pathway a student in a specific major must take to be able to seamlessly transfer from a Maricopa Community College to ASU. Along the pathway, students will earn an Arizona General Education Curriculum (AGEC) and a transfer associate’s degree.

To be eligible for the Tuition Commitment for the 2009-10 academic year, students must sign up for a MAPP with an academic advisor at their community college before May 14.

To get started, students should visit and click on “Getting Started on a MAPP.”

In addition to the Tuition Commitment, Maricopa students who participate in the MAPP also are eligible for the Alliance Merit Scholarship. This scholarship is awarded to Maricopa Community College students who have completed an associate’s degree with a cumulative transfer GPA of 3.75 or higher.


Training provided to convert medical offices to electronic systems

Phoenix College and GateWay Community College (two Maricopa Community Colleges) were recently notified by The Los Rios Community College District in California that they have been named a part of a consortium of 14 colleges to receive a portion of a $5.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The grant is designed to train individuals to provide assistance in the installation and use of computerized health information systems in hospitals and medical offices. The electronic systems are meant to replace traditional paper methods.

A pilot group of 14 GateWay Community College students have completed the program and are looking for paid internships to serve as a bridge between the classroom and practical work experience. Companies currently involved or moving into any aspect of the electronic health records industry are encouraged to consider GateWay students for internships.

For more information on the Systems Analysis for Practice Management Program or how to contact students for internships, call Heidi at (602) 286-8931 or John at (602) 286-8594. For information on the grant or the Health Information Technology program at Phoenix College, call Bonnie at (602) 285-7149.


Former CGCC administrators endow scholarship funds

Two former Chandler-Gilbert Community College administrators are making college possible for students who may not otherwise have been able to pursue their dream of a higher education.

Former CGCC president Dr. Maria Hesse and former Vice President of Academic Affairs Lois Bartholomew endowed scholarship funds last fall, which inspired the launch of the college’s “Be the Connection Student Scholarship Campaign.” The goal of the campaign is 100 percent employee participation, along with contributions from community partners. The campaign has raised more than $80,000 to date to fund these scholarships, and the Arnette S. Ward General Scholarship fund.

The Maria L. Hesse Service and Leadership Scholarship Fund is awarded to students who demonstrate exceptional leadership and service to the college and the community, and the Lois M. Bartholomew Emergency Scholarship Fund is awarded to students faced with unforeseeable emergency needs.

For more information or to donate to the Be the Connection campaign, access or call (480) 732-7030.


W. P. Carey School ranks among best business school values

Because of the recession, everyone’s looking for a bargain. When it comes to a college education, the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University ranks among the best values. In a new list, Bloomberg BusinessWeek names the W. P. Carey School among the Top 20 public business schools for “Return on Investment.”

The new rankings for undergraduate programs compare the amount of money spent on annual tuition with the median base salary students receive at graduation. Not surprisingly, public schools were much better bargains than private schools overall. However, even among the public schools, the W. P. Carey School of Business ranks No. 17 in the nation. It’s the top ranking for any Arizona school and third highest for any public school in the western United States.

Undergraduate students graduating from the W. P. Carey School of Business average an impressive $6.54 for every dollar spent on annual tuition.

The W. P. Carey School of Business has received several other recent high rankings, further demonstrating the excellence of the school. The W. P. Carey MBA is ranked among the Top 30 MBA programs in the country by U.S. News & World Report. The evening MBA program is ranked Top 25 among part-time MBA programs. The school was also just named Top 25 in the world for business school research productivity, according to the University of Texas at Dallas.


‘How to Choose a Catholic School’ booklet available

A booklet entitled “How to Choose a Catholic School” is available online through the Diocesan Web site at

A booklet can be obtained by calling (602) 354-2345.

Produced by the Diocesan Catholic Schools Office, the booklet provides a practical vehicle for interested parents to decide which of the 25 Catholic pre-schools, 29 Catholic elementary schools and six Catholic high schools are right for their families.


Awaken your employment status with a career in sleep disorders technology

Are you tired of your current career or employment status? Revitalize it and train to become a Polysomnographic Technologist at GateWay Community College in just eight months. Beginning this May, GWCC will offer a new certificate program in Polysomnography Technology (PSG); the only such program in the state of Arizona. The PSG program will train students to monitor and analyze patients with sleep disorders such as sleep apnea, insomnia, narcolepsy and various parasomnias.

For details, contact an advisor at (602) 286-8183 or visit


CGCC receives national recognition for community service, named to President’s Honor Roll

Chandler-Gilbert Community College has been named for the fourth year in a row to the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement.

Honorees are chosen based on a series of selection factors including the scope and innovation of service projects, percentage of student participation in service activities, incentives for service, and the extent to which the school offers academic service-learning courses.

The Honor Roll is a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service in collaboration with the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation, the U.S. Department of Education, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

CGCC is located at 2626 E. Pecos Road in Chandler. For more information, call (480) 732-7030.


SMCC earns continued accreditation

As it celebrates 30 years of helping students to achieve their educational goals, South Mountain Community College has received formal notice from the Higher Learning Commission that it has been granted continued accreditation as an institution of higher education. Official notice was received by the college in a letter issued by the commission on Dec. 16, 2009.

Since the fall of 2006, college faculty and staff have been laying the groundwork for SMCC’s successful re-accreditation. Key to this effort was a two-year self-study, through which the college reviewed and assessed its performance and achievements.

For additional information about the college, visit


CGCC offers engineering degree

Created in partnership between Chandler-Gilbert Community College and Glendale Community College, the Associate of Applied Science in Engineering Technology degree will enable students to enter the workforce as an entry-level engineering aid upon graduation from the two-year program.

CGCC and GCC worked with local industry, including Honeywell, Avnet, AeroSpec, SRP, ATL Incorporated, Medtronic and Sundt Construction to create a degree program that meets the current employment needs of the engineering industry.

CGCC is located at 2626 E. Pecos Road in Chandler.

For more information about this program, contact Bassam Matar at (480) 732-7139.


SMCC offers GED high school equivalency testing

South Mountain Community College, 7050 S. 24th St., is offering GED testing for individuals who do not have a high school diploma and are seeking to earn a high school equivalency diploma.

Candidates must be at least 16 years of age. Those under 18 must bring a notarized letter of consent from a parent or guardian, along with an official letter of withdrawal from their last school attended. The GED testing fee is $75, with a $15 re-test fee for each subject area. Testing is by appointment only, and pre-registration is required prior to testing. Pre-registration takes place on Monday afternoons between 1:30 and 3 p.m. Testing takes place on Wednesdays between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Tests are available in English, Spanish and large-print. Special accommodations are available for examinees with documented disabilities.

For more information, call (602) 243-8188. 

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