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© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Bowe tabbed All-American, highlights Volleyball's award winners

Bowe first ever WCC Volleyball All-American

Waubonsee Community College’s Erin Bowe was recently named an NJCAA Division II Women’s Volleyball Honorable Mention All-American, the first Waubonsee volleyball player to ever achieve that distinction. Bowe headlines a group of seven Lady Chiefs’ team members that have been recognized by the NJCAA’s Region IV and the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference for their outstanding performance during the team’s historic season. Bowe was tabbed to the All-Region First Team along with Kaitlyn Richter, while Laura Lyons was selected to the All-Region Second Team. Bowe was also chosen as the ISCC Player of the Year after leading Waubonsee to the program’s first ever conference title. Along with Bowe, Allison Humes was also chosen to the All-ISCC First Team, while Richter, Ellie Martin and Faith Montalbano were each named to the All-ISCC Second Team. Third-year head coach Steve Kish was selected as both the ISCC and Region IV Volleyball Coach of the Year after leading Waubonsee to its’ first ever appearance at the NJCAA Division II National Tournament.

Bowe, a sophomore from Geneva, led the Lady Chiefs in almost every statistical category. The 5’9” outside hitter finished in the top-20 nationally among all NJCAA Division II players in kills (474), digs (754) and points (580). The Rosary High School graduate also led Waubonsee in aces (52) and was third on the team in blocks (46). Bowe was ranked as the number two player in Region IV after helping lead Waubonsee to the Division II District B crown for the first time ever in the program’s history. A First Team All-ISCC and First Team All-Region selection as a freshman, Bowe finishes her Waubonsee career as the Lady Chiefs’ all-time leader in kills (968) and points (1,163.5).

A freshman from Batavia, Lyons was second on Waubonsee’s squad in kills (447), points (531.5) and digs (717), ranking 20th nationally in that category. The 5’7” outside hitter also recorded 38 aces, third most on the Lady Chiefs’ squad.

Despite starting the season slowly due to an off-season injury, Humes led Waubonsee with 94 blocks, putting her ninth nationally in that category. The 6’1” sophomore from Somonauk High School tallied 348 kills and was third on Waubonsee’s team with 491 points.

Martin, a sophomore from Aurora West High School, was 14th nationally in assists per game with a 9.17 average. Although she missed nearly a dozen matches due to injury, Waubonsee’s setter finished with 1,027 assists and 292 digs. As a freshman Martin was a First Team All-ISCC selection after finishing 18th nationally with 1,179 assists. Her two-year total of 2,206 assists puts her at the top of Waubonsee’s record book.

Montalbano, a 5’11” middle hitter from Aurora Christian High School, booked 64 blocks to finish 25th nationally in that category. Often coming off the bench, the sophomore also compiled 270 kills and 365 points on the season.

Kish, an alumnus of Aurora East High School, has guided the Lady Chiefs to 70 wins the last two years alone, including an 18-2 mark in the ISCC play. Waubonsee’s historic 2014 season included a victory over the NJCAA’s top-ranked Division II team at the time, Kirkwood (IA) Community College. Kish’s crew also accomplished several firsts for the program including cracking the national rankings for the first time when they were tabbed 22nd nationally in November. The Lady Chiefs went undefeated in ISCC play to captured the ISCC title for the first time. Waubonsee later downed Kankakee Community College to secure their first ever Region IV crown and National Tournament berth. Although the Lady Chiefs went 0-2 at the National Tournament in Phoenix, Ariz., they finished the season 35-16 overall, tying the program’s single-season record for wins set in 1994 and equaled in 2013.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Kilbride named All-American, heads up Women's Soccer awards

Kilbride fourth Lady Chiefs' soccer player named an NJCAA All-American

Waubonsee Community College’s Haley Kilbride was recently named an NJCAA Division I Women’s Soccer Second Team All-American. Kilbride heads up a large contingent of Lady Chiefs’ players recognized for their outstanding performance this past season by the NJCAA’s Region IV and the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference (ISCC). Along with Kilbride, Kelli Cardine, Andrea Garcia and Elizabeth Goll were each chosen to the All-Region IV First Team; while Lisa Gaffino, Lindsay Spears, Daniela Bueno, Mayra Patino and Savannah Ricker were each named to the All-Region IV Second Team.

A steady and consistent performer, Kilbride was also chosen as the ISCC’s Player of the Year after helping lead the Lady Chiefs to a conference title, going 6-0 in league play. Cardine, Garcia, Goll, Spears and Bueno were all tabbed All-ISCC First Team. In addition, Patino, Ricker, Ashley Darlak, Anne Marie Giese, Jasmine Velazquez and Olivia Cozzoni all were selected to the All-ISCC Second Team. Coach Brad Schlemmer was chosen the Region IV and ISCC Women’s Soccer Coach of the Year.

A sophomore midfielder from Rosary High School, Kilbride tallied 15 goals and 14 assists, which tied her for 13th nationally among all NJCAA Division I players in assists. Her 44 points were the 10th highest single-season total in the program’s existence. The Batavia native had three game-winning goals this past fall, while recording a point in 12 of the Lady Chiefs’ 22 matches. Kilbride, the fourth Waubonsee women’s player ever named to the All-American team, finishes her Waubonsee career sixth in points (67), fifth in assists (19) and fourth in most games with an assist (11).

Cardine, a Dekalb High School graduate, booked seven goals and nine assists on her way to totaling 23 points. The sophomore midfielder had a pair of game-winning goals this fall, while helping Waubonsee win 27 matches the last two seasons.

Garcia led Waubonsee in scoring with 22 goals, tying her for 14th nationally in goals scored. The forward from Aurora East High School also was credited with nine assists, giving her 53 points on the season. Her 53 points tied her for 15th nationally and is the fifth highest single-season total for a Waubonsee women’s soccer player. In addition, Garcia booked three game-winning goals. The sophomore finishes her Waubonsee career fourth in points (82) and tied for third in goals scored (36).

Goll, a sophomore from Plano, tallied 11 goals and 12 assists. The midfielder’s 34 total points tied her for third most on Waubonsee’s team this fall, as seven Lady Chiefs’ players reached 20 or more points.

Aurora Central Catholic High School graduate Gaffino was solid in the net for Waubonsee. A Montgomery native, Gaffino finished the season 22nd nationally in save percentage (.862) and recorded 76 saves in the 14 matches she played in. The sophomore keeper had a 1.32 goals against average while posting a 10-2-1 record.

Spears was instrumental in Waubonsee’s defense, which provided protection for Gaffino and the Lady Chiefs’ other keeper Christina Sommerfeld. A sophomore from Batavia, Spears helped lead a unit that posted three straight shutouts in the Region IV Tournament en route to outscoring their competition 23-0 and out shooting them 90-11.       

Bueno, a sophomore from Aurora West High School, contributed four goals and seven assists. Along with Kilbride and Goll, she completed the Lady Chiefs’ dominating trio of midfielders.

Patino, another key sophomore defender, helped Waubonsee dominate ISCC foes. The Aurora East High School graduate was part of a Lady Chiefs’ defense that allowed only three goals and 20 shots on goal total in six conference matches.

A forward from St. Charles East High School, Darlak netted 15 goals and four assists. The freshman booted four game-winning goals and was tied for third in points (34) on Waubonsee’s team.

Ricker, a sophomore from DeKalb, was a defender with offensive capabilities too. She helped the Lady Chiefs’ defense post seven shutouts while also registering seven goals and seven assists on the season.

A Kaneland High School graduate, Giese was part of a defensive unit that allowed only 29 goals prior to the National Tournament, the fourth lowest total in the program’s history.

Velazquez provided the Lady Chiefs with a fourth quality midfielder off the bench. The freshman from Aurora East High School chipped in with three goals and four assists on the season as well.

Cozzoni gave the Lady Chiefs a fifth legitimate scoring threat as she contributed 15 goals as well. Her total of 30 points put the freshman from Rosary High School fourth on the team in scoring.

Schlemmer, in his sixth season with the program and third as head coach, led Waubonsee to the National Tournament for the second time in the program’s history. A native of Massillon, Ohio, he has helped guide the Lady Chiefs to 82 wins the last six years including three Region IV titles, two ISCC crowns and two berths in the NJCAA Division I National Tournament.  

The Region IV title was the fourth for Waubonsee’s women’s soccer program. The Lady Chiefs eventually lost to top-ranked Iowa Western College and eighth-ranked Butler (KS) Community College at the National Tournament in Melbourne, Fla., to finish the season 15-5-2 overall, the fourth most wins in a single season in the program’s history. Waubonsee ended the season fifth nationally among all NJCAA Division I squads in goals scored (107) and assists (83). Schlemmer’s crew set school records for most goals in a game (15) and most players to reach double-digits (5) in goals scored in a single-season. The Lady Chiefs tied a school mark with nine goals in the first half of play versus Daley College in mid-October. Waubonsee also had 10 players reach double-digits in points scored for the season. 

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Celebrates Past Year's Accomplishments

Read about Waubonsee's institutional and individual accomplishments during the 2013-14 fiscal year in this annual memo from President Dr. Christine Sobek. 

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee to Celebrate Completion of Field House, 2020 College Master Plan

Next month, Waubonsee Community College will celebrate the arrival of 2020 five years early.

At a special event on March 10, Waubonsee will mark the completion of the newest addition to its Sugar Grove campus - the new Field House- as well as the completion of its 2020 College Master Plan.

Offering three indoor courts, a suspended running track and a fitness/dance studio, among other amenities, the Field House will offer Waubonsee students and athletes almost 60,000 square feet of additional space to practice, train and exercise.

At the same time, the college will rededicate Erickson Hall, Waubonsee’s longstanding gymnasium and athletic facility, to which the Field House is attached. While the Field House has been under construction since November 2013, Erickson Hall also underwent extensive renovations as part of the $19 million project. Renovations included the expansion and upgrade of a dedicated athletic team workout room, improved locker rooms and a remodeled athletic study hall room.

Erickson Hall continues to serve as Waubonsee’s competition gymnasium, with bleacher seating capacity for 800 people.

The Field House/Erickson Hall complex offers students and the community a seamless, first-class facility to support Waubonsee’s athletics programs, credit and noncredit physical education, wellness instruction and general recreation.

“More than just a place to play or work out, this building will help our students develop as well-rounded individuals, and contribute to the quality of life of the community,” said Waubonsee President Dr. Christine Sobek.

With the grand opening of the Field House and renovated Erickson Hall, Waubonsee also will use the occasion to announce and celebrate the completion of its 2020 College Master Plan, both ahead of schedule and on budget.

Launched just over a decade ago with the overwhelming support of voters in referendums in 2002 and 2003, the multi-year building project has reshaped the college, adding an abundance of new classrooms, labs and learning spaces, and placed Waubonsee on a firm footing for the future.

“We are proud that, through teamwork, we fulfilled the commitments we made to our communities,” Dr. Sobek said. “We have been good stewards with the dollars taxpayers entrusted to us.”

From 2005-2011, Waubonsee opened a new building or new campus nearly every year, beginning with the Campus Operations building on the north side of the Sugar Grove Campus in 2005.

From 2006-2009, the college opened its new Science Building, Academic and Professional Center and Student Center on the Sugar Grove Campus.
In 2010 and 2011, Waubonsee opened its new campuses in Plano and downtown Aurora.

And on March 10, the college will celebrate the completion of the final piece of the 2020 College Master Plan, with the dedication of the Field House and Erickson Hall.

The event at the Field House, on the north end of Waubonsee’s Sugar Grove Campus, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive, will begin at 2 p.m., with a short ceremony at 2:15 p.m.

Guests can enjoy refreshments and tours of the Field House and Erickson Hall from 3-4 p.m.

For more information on the 2020 College Master Plan or to RSVP to the March 10 event, visit

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Industrial Systems Tech Professor Ballee Selected to MSSC Expert Panel

Shawn Ballee, Assistant Professor of Industrial Systems Technology at Waubonsee Community College, has been selected to the National Subject Matter Expert Panel for the Manufacturing Skills Standards Council (MSSC). 

The MSSC is an industry-led training, assessment and certification system focused on helping students develop the core skills and knowledge needed by U.S. employers of production and material handling workers.

Ballee will serve as a National Subject Matter Expert Panel member on mechanical power and fluid power transmission and electrical controls in manufacturing.

As a panel member, Ballee will leverage his extensive experience in manufacturing processes, power generation and education, as well as an authorized safety trainer for MSSC and the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), to review national certification standards, ensuring they properly reflect the needs of technicians in the field.

“Working in today’s manufacturing companies requires not only basic skills, but high technology skills that most applicants do not have,” said Ballee. 

Ballee said he and Waubonsee will help MSSC accomplish its goals to train and certify front-line manufacturing workers by partnering with local high schools on dual credit programs and promoting MSSC certification to students at Waubonsee.


© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Beginning her story: Student Anna Dutton Leverages Experience, Recognitions to Pen Story of Student Success

When Anna Dutton’s guidance counselor enrolled her in her first journalism class at Oswego High School, she thought there had been a mistake.

“I tried to get out of it,” Dutton said. “I didn’t want to be there. I begged.”

But about three years later, and just a few months removed from her moment on stage before a roomful of applauding professional journalists, accepting the Northern Illinois Newspaper Association’s award recognizing her as the best high school journalist in the state in 2014, Dutton can’t imagine her future not including the title of “journalist.”

“I’ve discovered my passion for journalism,” she said. 

And over the next two years, Waubonsee will become a key part of helping her achieve her dream of attaining her byline. 

For her achievements, past and present, and her commitment to pursuing her dream, Waubonsee is pleased to recognize Anna Dutton as the college’s Student Success: Featured Student for the month of February.

As she neared graduation at Oswego High School, Dutton, like many graduating seniors, paid a visit to a number of prospective colleges.

Ultimately, she said, she fell in love with the University of Missouri, home of the Missouri School of Journalism, one of the most heralded collegiate journalism programs in the U.S.

However, as the daughter of a blue-collar family, Dutton said she recognized attending “Mizzou” would not be easy, given the massive annual tuition bill she would face, particularly after just missing a key scholarship opportunity at the school.

But Dutton refused to let her dreams simply fade away.

Her passion for news writing was first kindled in that OHS journalism course during her sophomore year.

“I had told my guidance counselor I, maybe, wanted to do something with writing,” she said. “Then my counselor took the reins, and put me in this class.

“And the worst part? I was this sophomore in a class full of seniors.”

However, soon after publishing her first few articles in the school newspaper, the Panther Paw, Dutton said the lure of the written word proved irresistible. By her junior year, she was serving as editor at the newspaper, while continuing to write stories of all kinds.

“I love telling the kinds of stories that bring recognition to the people who normally don’t get noticed, to give them a voice,” Dutton said. “I really want my writing to be what the news should be.”

Outside of school, Dutton landed an internship as student columnist for the Oswego Ledger-Sentinel newspaper. Coupled with her work at the high school’s newspaper and yearbook, the columns she penned set her apart in the race for NINA’s recognition as High School Journalist of the Year.

In recognizing Dutton, NINA’s judges said they “were especially impressed with the professional quality of Dutton’s writing and reporting.”

Dutton’s achievements went beyond editorial, however. At Oswego High School, she also worked to promote the newspaper on campus, ultimately succeeding at recruiting some of the high school’s student athletes to help sell copies of the paper to the rest of the student body.

“It was amazing,” Dutton said. “People started reading the paper.”

It was in that moment, she said she began to recognize leadership qualities within her, qualities including a desire to gladly accept new challenges and to persevere.Those qualities, she said, helped to steer her to Waubonsee.

Leveraging her high school leadership experiences, Dutton landed a prestigious Lucile Gustafson Scholarship through Waubonsee, securing free tuition for two years at the college and enabling her to pursue her associate degree without financial worry.

Even after just one semester, Dutton said the program has helped her grow even more as a leader.

“Being part of such a great group of people, I’ve learned so much about myself, about where I am as a leader.”

In coming semesters, she said she hopes to continue to develop leadership opportunities through campus organizations, including Phi Theta Kappa and Delta Sigma Omicron.

However, she said her academic experience at the college has also helped her further develop her writing skills – a development she attributed largely to Associate Professor of English Billy Clem.

“I’ve never had a teacher who made me want to reach perfection before,” Dutton said. “Billy Clem did that for me.”

And, while Waubonsee does not publish a campus newspaper, Dutton has continued to work toward her professional aspirations, securing an internship this summer at the Kane County Chronicle newspaper in St. Charles.

From Waubonsee, Dutton intends to transfer to a four-year college with a journalism program. At this point, however, she has shifted her focus from Columbia, Mo., to Columbia College in downtown Chicago.

“I’ve discovered I am good at writing,” she said. “Now, I want to develop it, and see where it takes me.”

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Hosts Art Exhibitions in February, March

A Chicago-based fine arts photographer who explores humanity’s impact on the environment will exhibit a selection of her works at Waubonsee Community College’s Sugar Grove campus gallery for the next few weeks.

At the same time, a group art show, investigating abstraction through various approaches, will be on display at Waubonsee’s downtown Aurora campus.

Through March 8, photographic works by artist Allison Grant will be on display as part of “Unsoiled,” an exhibition in the Arrowhead Room gallery in the Dickson Center on Waubonsee’s Sugar Grove Campus, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive.

The exhibit is free and open to the public Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., closed Sundays.

The exhibit includes a dozen of Grant’s works, each designed to address the dichotomy existing between the pristine environment many perceive in nature and the reality of the omnipresence of plastics and other byproducts of human consumption in the surrounding landscape.

Grant, an artist, educator and curator, has exhibited her works on numerous occasions in Chicago, New York, Dallas, Cincinnati and other locations since 2008.  Her works are held in public collections at DePaul Art Museum in Chicago, Columbia College Chicago and 4-Culture in Seattle.

Through March 29, the Café at Waubonsee’s Aurora Campus will host “Shift What You See…,” a group show featuring a dozen abstract works from various artists, including Garrett Austin, Christopher Binkley, Kelly Fahle, Taylor Fatland, Caitlin Geiger, Michelle Linden, Amanda Meyer, Yirian Perez-Roig, Casey Rose, Ryan Werrline and Les Westphal.

The show, which opened Jan. 27, is free and open to the public Monday-Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., and Fridays, 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.For more information on these Waubonsee exhibitions, contact Art Coordinator Cecilia Vargas at or (630) 466-7900 ext. 2964.


© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Patrick Engineering Honored for Work on Waubonsee North Entrance Intersection

The project to reconstruct and install traffic signals to increase safety for those using the north entrance at Waubonsee Community College’s Sugar Grove Campus has won honors for the engineering firm the college hired to design the improvements.

On Feb. 6, Lisle-based Patrick Engineering Inc. received a 2015 Engineering Excellence Merit Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Illinois for the engineering firm’s work on all three phases of the intersection project.

The college, in partnership with Patrick Engineering, undertook the project following a 2010 traffic accident, which claimed the lives of Waubonsee students Brandon Utley and Ryan Sherrod.

Following the accident, an Illinois Department of Transportation study determined a traffic signal at the Route 47 intersection was warranted. Waubonsee officials advocated for the new signal and worked with IDOT to enhance safety at the north entrance. A partnership of municipal, township and county authorities, as well as state elected officials, collaborated with Waubonsee to obtain funding and bring the project to completion. 

IDOT activated the traffic signals on April 25, 2014.

David Bender, Executive Director of ACEC-Illinois, said the Waubonsee North Entrance project was recognized by his organization for enhancing safety for all using the intersection, as well as for the manner in which engineers designed the intersection to handle stormwater drainage.

“We recognized this project made the intersection safer for students, staff, faculty, commuters and everyone on Route 47,” said Bender. “It’s great work from a great engineering company.”

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee, Delnor EMT-Paramedic Program Secures Accreditation

Waubonsee Community College, in partnership with Delnor Hospital in Geneva, has secured another advantage for students seeking to become paramedics.

The Committee on Accreditation for the Emergency Medical Services Professions, an accreditation committee of the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs, has awarded initial accreditation status to Waubonsee’s Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) – Paramedic program.

A recent peer review conducted by the accreditation committee and the CAAHEP’s board of directors found the program, operated by Waubonsee and the Southern Fox Valley Emergency Medical Services System Paramedic Training Program at Cadence Health System’s Delnor Hospital, to be in substantial compliance with the nationally established accreditation standards.

Waubonsee and Delnor have partnered to develop and operate the EMT-Paramedic program since 2007.

To participate in the EMT-Paramedic program, students must first hold an Illinois license as an EMT-Basic.

Initial accreditation status was awarded Jan. 15, 2015, and is scheduled to expire in January 2020, said Dr. Jess Toussaint, Dean for Health Professions and Public Service at Waubonsee.

Toussaint said the national accreditation status will allow graduates of the Waubonsee program to take the national EMS certification exams offered by the National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians, as well as the EMT-Paramedic certification tests administered by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

By obtaining certification through the National Registry of EMTs, students will be permitted to work anywhere in the U.S. 

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Dean for Students Peska Selected for JSARP Editorial Board

Dr. Scott Peska, Dean for Students at Waubonsee Community College, will represent the college as a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Student Affairs Research and Practice.

Independent academic publishing group De Gruyter selected Peska for the position helping to oversee the journal. Peska will serve on the journal’s editorial board for a three-year term, beginning March 22, 2015.

As a member of the editorial board, Peska will serve among those who review manuscripts and provide guidance to authors to ensure articles are suitable for publication in the journal.

Peska said he hopes to use the position to “ensure the community-college perspective is being addressed in scholarly works within the field of student affairs.”

“As the JSARP journal invites empirical research-based articles, conceptual ‘think’ pieces, scholarly book reviews or case studies, this opportunity allows me to encourage authors to think critically in regard to issues and challenges facing community colleges,” Peska said.

He said he also hopes the experience will provide insight on strategies to employ at Waubonsee to help students and the college attain goals.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Board of Trustees Recognizes Retiring Local Sheriffs Perez, Randall

The Waubonsee Community College Board of Trustees has taken a moment to thank two retiring local sheriffs for their work ensuring public safety in Waubonsee’s home communities.

At its Feb. 18 meeting, the Waubonsee Board of Trustees recognized former Kane County Sheriff Pat Perez and Kendall County Sheriff Richard Randall for their years of public service in local law enforcement.

“The diligent service provided through the years by Sheriff Randall and Sheriff Perez has played a role in helping us at Waubonsee fulfill one of our primary objectives: Providing a safe environment for our students, faculty, staff and visitors,” said Dr. Lulu Blacksmith, Director of Governmental and Multicultural Affairs at Waubonsee. “We wish to take this opportunity to thank them for their remarkable contributions and wish them a happy retirement.”

Perez, who had served as Kane County Sheriff since 2006, chose to retire and not pursue another term as sheriff. As a believer in term limits, Perez said he had intended from the start to serve only two terms as Kane County’s top law enforcement official, lest he lose enthusiasm for the job or fall prey to “getting too full of himself.”

His retirement ended 22 years of service at the Sheriff’s Office.

As sheriff, Perez was recognized for numerous accomplishments, including raising accountability at the county jail; reducing lawsuits against sheriff’s office personnel; establishing the sheriff’s office’s Office of Professional Standards; instituting random mandatory drug testing for deputies and other employees; and spearheading the relocation of the sheriff’s office and jail in 2008 to the Kane County Adult Justice Center at the corner of Peck Road and Route 38 in St. Charles.

Randall, who was first elected Kendall County Sheriff in 1986, is retiring as the longest-serving sheriff in Kendall County history. Before his election as sheriff, Randall served as Yorkville’s chief of police from 1979-1986.

Randall earned his associate degree in criminal justice from Waubonsee, and was honored as one of Waubonsee’s “Fabulous Forty” alumni in 2006, as part of the college’s 40th anniversary celebration.

He earned a certificate in criminal justice management from Aurora University and graduated from the FBI National Academy’s Law Enforcement Executive Development program.

In addition to his service as sheriff, Randall also served his community as a member and volunteer captain of the Bristol-Kendall Fire Department; a past president of the Kendall County United Fund; charter member of Yorkville Substance Abuse Via Education; charter sponsor of the Kendall County Criminal Justice Explorer Scouts Post 1155; member of the Yorkville Lions Club; and member of the Kendall County Historical Society.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Volunteers to Provide Free Income Tax Preparation Services

This spring, a team of volunteers associated with Waubonsee Community College again will not only help hundreds of local residents file their federal and state income tax returns for free, but will help boost the local economy in the process.

Working this year until the April 15 tax return filing deadline, dozens of volunteers will staff Waubonsee’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance site.

Waubonsee has partnered with the Center for Economic Progress for more than a decade to sponsor the free income tax preparations assistance sessions through the VITA program.

In 2014, the Waubonsee VITA volunteers processed 902 income tax returns, bringing almost $1.9 million in tax refunds home to the Waubonsee region.

VITA sessions began Jan. 28 and will continue on Wednesdays from 5:30-8 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at Waubonsee’s downtown Aurora Campus, 18 S. River Street, until April 15.

The site will be closed during spring break on Wednesday, March 18, and Saturday, March 21.

At these sessions, volunteers from Waubonsee and the Center for Economic Progress will help prepare and electronically file income tax returns, including those requiring the 1040 Schedule C used by small businesses and the self-employed.

Those eligible for the program include families with annual incomes of $50,000 or less, and individuals with annual incomes less than $25,000. Those seeking tax return preparation assistance at the VITA sessions should bring a copy of last year's tax return, if they have one; Forms W-2 and 1099 from all employment in 2014; Social Security cards for all family members; and a photo ID.

The free income tax return preparation is done on a first-come, first-served basis, and the site closes when capacity is reached.

For more information, contact Waubonsee Community College at (630) 466-7900, ext. 2992, email, or visit the Center for Economic Progress website at

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Community Education Seeks Local Experts to Teach, Host, Earn

Our communities are filled with friends, neighbors and business people brimming with passion and skills.

Whatever the passion or expertise – whether cooking, wine, art, crafts, collectibles, meditation, travel, exploring or technology, just to name a few – Waubonsee Community College’s Community Education Department invites these experts to share it with the larger community.

On Thursday, Feb. 26, at 7 p.m. in the Academic and Professional Center on Waubonsee’s Sugar Grove Campus, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive, the department will host a free Opportunity Open House to help potential teachers and hosts explore their options. Current instructors will be on hand to share their experiences and tips. 

Each semester, the Community Education Department hosts a variety of noncredit, personal enrichment courses, along with some Unique Experiences, which are memorable events hosted by local experts, often at their place of business. Past offerings have included instruction on how to select wine, brew coffee, create jewelry, decorate cakes, capture photographs, write stories, and many others. For more examples, visit

To reserve your spot at the Opportunity Open House, call (630) 466-2360 or email

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Adds to Its Student Art Collection

During the fall 2014 semester, Waubonsee Community College purchased eight pieces of student-created artwork to display around its campuses. Through its Student Art Purchase Program, which started in fall 2006, the college has acquired almost 200 pieces of original artwork.  

This semester’s works came from Ashley Hoffman, of Sandwich; Anna Lopatin, of Sugar Grove; Amanda Meyer, of Elburn; Casey Rose, of Maple Park; Barb Sanders, of Hinckley; and Lara Popowitch, Irineo Rodriguez and Ryan Werrline, of Aurora.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Board Recognizes Retiring Legislators

At its Jan. 21 meeting, the Waubonsee Community College Board of Trustees recognized outgoing state legislators Kay Hatcher, Tim Schmitz and Tom Cross for their years of public service and college support. 

“Our commitment to provide students with enhanced educational opportunities is nurtured by the continued support and commitment from our elected officials,” said Dr. Lulu Blacksmith, Waubonsee’s Director of Governmental and Multicultural Affairs. “We are happy to express our gratitude to Representatives Hatcher, Schmitz and Cross for the contributions they have made in support of Waubonsee, our students and the community.” 

Kay Hatcher, of Yorkville, chose to retire from the General Assembly after six years of representing the state’s 50th district. Prior to that, she had been elected to the Oswego School Board and Kendall County Board, and also served as president of the Kendall County Forest Preserve District.

Also retiring earlier this month was Tim Schmitz, of Batavia, who served as the 65th District Illinois State Representative since 1999. For his last three terms in office, Schmitz was elected as the Assistant Republican Leader, and in 2009, he was appointed Deputy Republican Leader. 

Illinois House Republican Leader for the past 13 years, Tom Cross, of Oswego, is also ending his career in the Illinois General Assembly. He was first elected to represent the 97th District in 1992, and over the years has earned many honors, including the YMCA 2012 Legislative Hero Award.   

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Hosts Events to Help Students Pay for College

February marks Financial Aid Awareness Month, and Waubonsee Community College has planned a series of free public events to help students and parents learn more about receiving financial aid for the 2015-16 school year. 

The event series will launch next week with the first of three FAFSA Fairs. The two-hour workshops are designed to help students and parents learn how to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Anyone planning to attend should bring a copy of a 2014 W-2 Form and/or their 2014 federal income tax return. 

The first FAFSA Fair will take place Wednesday, Jan. 28, from 4-6 p.m. in Room 160 of Waubonsee’s downtown Aurora Campus, 18 S. River Street. 

The FAFSA Fair series will continue Sunday, Feb. 8, from 1-3 p.m., when Waubonsee hosts “College Goal Sunday” in Rooms 165 and 175 of the Academic and Professional Center on Waubonsee’s Sugar Grove Campus, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive. 

The series will conclude with a return to Aurora Campus, Room 160, on Tuesday, Feb. 24, from 1-3 p.m. 

Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces are invited to learn more about their educational tuition assistance options, as Waubonsee hosts a VA Education Benefits Seminar on Thursday, Feb. 5, from 4-6 p.m., in the Student Center, Room 106, on the college’s Sugar Grove Campus. 

And on Tuesday, Feb. 17, Waubonsee’s Financial Aid Office will host Ask the Experts, in which college finance experts will be on hand to answer questions, and the Game of Life Simulation, in which students are invited to spin the wheel and see how their current choices can impact their lives far into the future. Those events will run from 12-1:30 p.m. in the Student Center Café on the Sugar Grove Campus. 

For more information on Financial Aid Awareness month, visit or call the Financial Aid Office at (630) 466-7900, ext. 5774.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Spring Break Camps to Offer Kids, Teens Week of Fun, Enrichment

What are your kids doing over spring break? Registration is underway for Spring Break Camps at Waubonsee Community College.

Presented by the college’s Community Education Department, the weeklong camps will run from March 30 - April 3 at various times at Waubonsee’s Sugar Grove and Aurora campuses. The Spring Break Camps will offer children ages 4-14 the chance to engage in a range of fun, educational and enriching activities while school is out.

Children ages 7-10, for instance, will have the opportunity to learn to play a ukulele, work with LEGO robots, create video games or learn about the inner workings of the human body. At the same time, young teens can explore animation creation or learn sign language.And younger children, ages 4-6, can spend their spring break learning about dinosaurs.

Camps range in cost from $69-$89 per weeklong session.

For more information or to register, visit    

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College