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© 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’s Community Education Announces “A Season of Pure Magic”

Sugar Grove – Hypnotism, magic, and career development are all part of the offerings for Waubonsee Community College’s Community Education special events programs this year.

Dubbed “A Season of Pure Magic,” the schedule kicks off on Oct. 10 at the Sugar Grove Campus auditorium with “Miracles of the Mind,” an encore performance by Brian Imbus. His all-new show includes hypnotizing audience volunteers and leading them through a journey of the imagination. Imbus will also read minds and make predictions.

Imbus sold out his Waubonsee shows in 2013. Tickets are $19 for adults, and $12 for children age 12 and under.

For a limited time, you can save money when you purchase tickets for “Miracles of the Mind” and a spring performance by Daniel Martin, “Magic Made Me Do It. Until Oct. 10, tickets for both shows are for $29 for adults and $19 for children age 12 and under.

Martin’s March 5, 2016, show also takes place at the Sugar Grove Campus auditorium, and will showcase a high-energy blend of magic, escapes and comedy. Martin’s work has been featured on CBS, NBC, WGN, VH1, ESPN and at thousands of live events.

Tickets to Martin’s show are $19 for adults, and $12 for children age 12 and under.

For those looking to challenge their mind in terms of careers, Dr. James B. Huntington will present “How to Find a Lasting Career in the New Age of Work.”

This presentation is for those who are underemployed, unemployed or in transition in their careers. The author of several books on career development in the modern age, Huntington will discuss the new world of work and the 20 lasting career paths you need to know now. He will offer advice on successfully adapting your skill set to succeed in the world of automation, globalization and efficiency.

Huntington’s presentation takes place at 7 p.m. Nov. 5 at the Sugar Grove Campus’ Academic and Professional Center. Tickets are $10.

Waubonsee’s Community Education program offers personal enrichment courses, trips and tours, the Lifelong Learning Institute, special events, youth programs, community theater, and more. Information about these can be found at www.waubonsee.edu/communityed. To purchase tickets for these special events, visit www.waubonseetickets.com.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Instructor Hosts Workshop for High School Teachers

Dr. Pratima Jindal, Physics Instructor at Waubonsee Community College, hosted 19 area high school physics instructors for the Insights into Research Workshop at the Waubonsee Sugar Grove campus this summer.

During the workshop, participants learned about particle physics and contributed to designs for experiments.

The workshop was funded by a United States Compact Muon Solenoid Teacher Fellowship grant from the National Science Foundation, in partnership with Fermilab and the University of Notre Dame.

The workshop worked with Waubonsee’s Workforce Development Department to help 13 certified high school physics teachers earn 12 hours of professional development for their participation.

Jindal has authored or co-authored hundreds of publications, primarily in the field of high energy physics. Prior to teaching at Waubonsee, she worked as a research associate on the Compact Muon Spectrometer Experiment for CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee’s Distinguished Contributor Award Goes to 551 Volunteers

For more than a decade, a group of stalwart volunteers has gathered to assist low-income residents with their income taxes on nights and weekends during tax season at the Waubonsee Aurora Campus. 

Their efforts have translated into millions of dollars back to the community, real world experience for Waubonsee Community College students, and one less worry for hard working residents who receive the services. In short, the program exemplifies what can be achieved when the classroom meets the community.

The local effort, a partnership between Waubonsee and the Center for Economic Progress (CEP), is part of a nationwide Internal Revenue Service program known as the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA). Similar sites are hosted around the country.

This year, Waubonsee is honoring its VITA program volunteers with the Distinguished Contributor Award, which recognizes individuals or groups who have made an outstanding contribution to or given exemplary support to the college.

Launched locally in 2005 by accounting faculty members Dan Gibbons and Catherine Collins, VITA asks volunteers to commit to a minimum of 20 hours during the tax season, and to complete Internal Revenue Service certifications. Those training sessions equip volunteers with the necessary skills to assist clients.

George Sterling, Certified Public Accountant and Instructor at Waubonsee, currently manages the local program with the assistance of his wife Therese. The program provides services to families with annual incomes less than $50,000, and individuals with incomes less than $25,000.

Gibbons said he is impressed by the growth of the site since its beginning in 2005. He said that in the first year, volunteers completed 40 returns, and the next year, they completed more than 400. The program has continued to grow since.

Today, the work of 551 volunteers over 11 years has resulted in $13.1 million returned to the community. Since 2005, the program has served 7,267 clients who have filed a total of 13,570 federal and state returns.

Last season, the program served nearly 1,030 low-to moderate-income families and individuals, bringing $2 million in income tax refunds back to the local economy.  Gibbons said the program has benefited everyone involved.

“Volunteers have the opportunity to give back to their community, and both volunteers and students make long lasting connections,” he said. “Waubonsee has benefited as well. Due to connections we have made through VITA, two of our volunteers teach classes within the accounting program. One of those individuals has expanded the impact of the VITA program by managing a new site, unaffiliated with Waubonsee, in West Chicago.”

VITA coordinators and clients praise the volunteers for their work ethic, their commitment to the community, and for helping their clients maintain a sense of dignity and respect while dealing with what can be a stressful situation.

“I drive trucks and sell fruits and vegetables on the side,” said Curtiss Llong Bey, a 2015 client. “The service was exciting because everything got done faster than I thought. I really appreciate it. I have been telling people about it too. I used to do it myself and make errors. I went to the library last year to ask what the wording on a tax form meant, and they told me to come here. This is my second year, and I will be coming back as long as I make money.”

VITA is supported by a Waubonsee course, - ACC 245 VITA Program: Tax Procedure and Practice - which provides students with a service learning opportunity while gaining college credit. The program also provides field experience for students in the Legal Interpreting program, as those students provide interpreting services for clients while earning credits toward their required field experience.

Ne’Keisha Stepney, Assistant Dean of Business and Career Technologies, helps to oversee the program at Waubonsee.

“This program gives students a hands-on experience and a chance to work in their community from a different perspective,” she said. “It’s pure service learning.”

Therese Sterling, Assistant Site Manager, said the volunteers demonstrate that there is great value in being of service to others.

“We are grateful for their ongoing support, as many volunteers have been with the program for five or more years,” she said. “They show up with a smile, caring attitude, and approach the work they do whole-heartedly. Our volunteers not only support district residents, but also do so in a way that strengthens goodwill throughout our community.” 

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Earth Science Faculty Member Published as Co-Author

David Voorhees, Assistant Professor of Earth Science and Geology at Waubonsee Community College, was recently published as co-author of a field trip guidebook, “Mastodon Lake at Phillips Park, Aurora, Illinois: History, Educational Outreach, Mastodons, Cosmic Dust, and Geology,” in Deglacial History and Paleoenvironments of Northeastern Illinois.

The publication was presented in DeKalb in May at the 54th Midwest Friends of the Pleistocene Field Conference. The conference is an annual event where glacial geologists meet and then explore glacial geology in the region.

During this year’s conference, Voorhees was asked to discuss the 2004 mastodont dig, which was a partnership among Waubonsee, Aurora, the Illinois State Museum and the Illinois State Geological Survey.

Voorhees shared the educational and outreach activities developed for that summer-long dig. Voorhees has instructed earth science and geology at Waubonsee since 2002. His research specializes in glacial geology, geomorphology, and sedimentology, and includes coursework in hydrology and soils.

He previously spent seven years as an exploration geologist for two major oil companies.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Participates in STEM Project Funded by NSF Grant

Waubonsee Community College will participate in a grant partnership funded by the National Science Foundation.

The four-year project, “Faculty as Change Agents: Transforming a Geoscience Education in Two-year Colleges,” is part of a partnership that includes institutions of higher education around the country.

The project’s goal is to provide professional development to help community college geoscience faculty improve student success, and ultimately meet the demands for a well-trained geoscience and STEM workforce.

David Voorhees, Waubonsee Community College Associate Professor of Earth Science and Geology, will work with Cheryl Emerson Resnick, Professor at Illinois Central College, to help faculty around the region support student success and transfer, improve active teaching techniques, and enhance student pathways into geoscience careers.

The project is supporting teams of community college faculty around the country as well, and is expected to impact more than 250,000 students nationwide.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Evans Appointed to Fire and Emergency Service Educators Board

Michelle Evans, Waubonsee Community College Assistant Dean of Health Professions and Public Service, was appointed to a region-wide Fire and Emergency Service Educators Board.

She will serve as the board’s treasurer. The service region includes Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Missouri. 

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee English Faculty’s Op-Ed on Race Published

Ellen Lindeen, Associate Professor of English and Peace Studies at Waubonsee Community College, published an op-ed article, “An Obstacle to Peace: The Race Border,” in several publications this summer: Counterpunch, Huntington News, The Times of Earth, Las Vegas Informer and The Free Press.

The article was written as Lindeen attended a summer institute, “Conflict Transformation across Borders,” a University of Massachusetts-Boston graduate course offered in Quito, Ecuador. The class included trips to the Amazon and to Colombia.

Lindeen focused the article on how borders, whether real or imagined, keep people separated.

“I discuss migrations of people across geographical borders, and the use of walls to keep people in or out of certain places or countries,” she said.

Her conclusion is that race can also be a boundary that divides people and causes conflict or even violence.

“I ask people to see what divides them from others and to try to eliminate these borders,” she said.

Lindeen has taught at Waubonsee since 1996.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Frank Sinatra, Fried Chicken, Cars, and Cake

What’s better to do on a Thursday than a day trip to a car museum and cake decorating school, finished off with some fried chicken and Frank Sinatra?

Join Waubonsee Community College’s Community Education program on Thursday, September 24, on a day trip to the Romeoville area.

This trip has something for everyone: The itinerary includes the Beller Car Museum, showcasing products of Detroit’s heyday, and an inside peek at the Wilton School of Cake Decorating in Darien. After sightseeing, guests will enjoy the famous fried chicken at White Fence Farm while enjoying a musical show celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Frank Sinatra’s birth.

Tickets are limited, and are $89 per person. For more information, call (630) 466-2360 or visit www.waubonsee.edu/trips.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Dean Selected as Marketing Chairman of Aurora Area Convention and Visitors’ Bureau

Doug Grier, Waubonsee Community College Dean of Community Education, was selected as incoming chairman of the marketing committee of the Aurora Area Convention and Visitors’ Bureau. He previously served as chairman of the strategic planning committee.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Names Kendall Sheriff Baird as Distinguished Alumnus

Given its name, it’s no wonder Waubonsee Community College takes its mission of serving the community very seriously. So too do many of the college’s most successful alumni, including Kendall County Sheriff Dwight Baird. As he nears his 25th year of serving and protecting as a member of local law enforcement, the college is proud to name Baird its 2015 Distinguished Alumnus.

A career in public service was always in Baird’s plans, from the time he was a teenager. In fact, his plan back then was to serve as an officer in the Kendall County Sheriff’s Office, then the Oswego Police Department, then become a lawyer, a judge and finally a state senator.

Remarkably, it’s a plan he’s stuck to — for the most part. He’s worked at both the Sheriff’s Office and the Oswego Police Department, and while not a lawyer, judge or state senator, as Sheriff, he is an elected official.

The foundation for all of Baird’s various roles was built at Waubonsee. After graduating from Oswego High School in 1986, Baird headed to the college to study criminal justice under longtime faculty members Bob May and Neil Lippold.

 “I had heard great things about Waubonsee, and it was a good fit for me,” Baird said. “I could work a couple of jobs while still getting my education.”

When he earned his associate degree in 1988, Baird was still too young to test to become a police officer, and so he continued his job in loss prevention at the Montgomery K-Mart store until he turned 21 and was hired on at the Kendall County Sheriff’s Office by then-Sheriff Richard Randall, also a Waubonsee alumnus.

Perhaps Randall saw in Baird the same thing Baird now sees in the Waubonsee graduates who apply to work for the county.

“The great thing I see in Waubonsee and other community college graduates is that they have often worked in the real world and have that life experience,” Baird said. “That experience helps them relate to the people and situations they’ll be dealing with.”

After working in countywide law enforcement for a few years, Baird went on to the next step in his career path — a job with his hometown police department. He spent more than 22 years there, rising through the ranks to become chief and also serving as the interim village administrator for a time.

As he moved up the ranks, Baird sought out additional education, earning his bachelor’s degree from Aurora University and his master’s degree from Western Illinois University. Throughout these experiences, he continued to draw on his time at Waubonsee.

“I would still find myself reflecting on projects I did at Waubonsee or even referencing books I had used there,” Baird said.

Baird consulted his long-held career plan once again in 2014 when he ran for and was elected Kendall County Sheriff.

“Kendall County is very diverse, ranging from suburban areas to more rural townships,” Baird said. “One day we could be dealing with a cow in a roadway and then the next with a drive-by shooting. It’s a very diverse area, and the workload is ever-changing.”

Whatever the nature of the communities in the county, Baird is making efforts to connect with all of them. He decided to have the Sheriff’s Office head up security at the Kendall County Fairgrounds this year in order to be more visible in the community. For National Night Out on Aug. 4, the office participated in “Cops and Kids: Taking a Swing at Crime,” an exhibition softball game between the office and some Oswego Pony League players.

“We really want to build relationships and respect between citizens and police,” Baird said.

Baird’s advice to new and aspiring police officers echoes this theme of respect. “Police power and authority is given by the people, and we’re there to serve them, not ourselves.”

Because of his exceptional service to local residents, Baird has been recognized many times throughout the years. Among his many honors and awards are the Lifesaving Award from the Illinois Police Association, the Medal of Valor from the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, Metropolitan Enforcement Groups Director Award, Youth Service Volunteer Award, Oswegoland Optimist Police Officer of the Year, Governor’s Medal of Honor and the 2014 Illinois Crime Commission Police Chief of the Year. 

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Women's Tennis holding open tryouts

WCC's Women's Tennis holding tryoutsWaubonsee's Women's Tennis team is currently holding open tryouts for the 2015 fall season. Tryouts will be held Thursday and Friday, August 6 and 7, from 9:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. each day. They will continue next week as well, going Monday through Thursday beginning at 9:30 a.m. each day on Waubonsee's Sugar Grove campus tennis courts. For more information, you can contact head coach Jennifer McMullen at jmcmullen@waubonsee.edu.  

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Seeking Volunteer Tutors to Support Adult Literacy

The Adult Literacy Project at Waubonsee Community College is seeking volunteers to tutor adult students in reading, writing and speaking English.

Prospective tutors have two options for training — an online, self-paced training or a two-day class. The class will meet Saturday, September 12, and Saturday, September 19, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Waubonsee’s Aurora Campus, 18 S. River Street. All training and materials are free.

Participants must register for the training by August 31, 2015, by emailing emills@waubonsee.edu or calling (630) 801-7900, ext. 4221. Tutor applications are available online at www.waubonsee.edu/adultliteracy. Tutors must complete training before working with adult learners individually or in a classroom.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Fox Country Players to Hold Auditions for “Oliver”

Fox Country Players will hold auditions for the musical “Oliver” Aug. 27, 29 and 30 in the Auditorium of Waubonsee Community College’s Sugar Grove Campus, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive. Adult auditions will run 6-9 p.m. on Thursday, August 27 and 1-5 p.m. on Saturday, August 29. Children are invited to audition from 1-5 p.m. on Sunday, August 30.

Those auditioning should prepare a short song to sing and bring the sheet music along; an accompanist will be provided. Cold readings from the script and a short dance will also be included in the audition process.

In this Tony Award-winning musical, Charles Dickens' unforgettable characters, including innocent orphan Oliver and the gang of pick-pocket street urchins he falls in with, come to life through a sensational score that includes such favorites as "You've Got to Pick a Pocket or Two," "Consider Yourself at Home," "Where is Love?" and the scrumptious "Food, Glorious Food."

The cast features five male roles, five female roles, two teen girls, one teen boy, two featured children, an ensemble of children and an ensemble of adults.

Fox Country Players is also seeking production staff and backstage technicians for “Oliver.” For more information on those opportunities, email foxcoutryplayers@comcast.net or call (630) 234-5459.

Founded in 1979, Fox Country Players is a Yorkville-based community theatre group dedicated to excellence in theatre education and performance in the Fox Valley Community.

“Oliver” is being presented in partnership with Waubonsee Community College’s Community Education Department. The show will run Oct. 16-18 at the Sugar Grove Campus Auditorium. Complete details can be found at www.waubonsee.edu/fcp.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Campuses to Host Art Exhibits

This month Waubonsee Community College launched two new art exhibits — a student group show at its downtown Aurora Campus and a sculpture installation at its Sugar Grove Campus.

“THERMOmeter: taking color’s temperature” features several colorful works created by Waubonsee students this past academic year. It will run through Sept. 27 in the café of the Aurora Campus, 18 S. River St. The café is open 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays, and 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Fridays.

Student artists featured in the exhibit include Matt Diehl and Esther Espino, of Maple Park; Scott Evans, Dulce A. Garcia, Caitlin Geiger and David Ross, of Aurora; Allison Johnson, of Sugar Grove; Juan Montano, of Oswego; Lisa Munson, of Plano; Kathryn St. Peter, of Elburn; and Michael Turney, of Somonauk.

“Going Nuts,” a sculpture by Chicago-based artist Victoria Fuller, is currently featured in the Sugar Grove Campus’ Dickson Window Art Project Space, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive. Running through Oct. 28, it can be viewed 5:30 a.m. – 11 p.m., Monday through Friday; 6:30 a.m. – 11 p.m., Saturday; and 8 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sunday.

According to Fuller, she “combines gigantism and the idea of the multiple to comment on cultural fascination with genetically modified food products, and the potentially negative side effects this exploitation of nature could bring.”

Fuller has exhibited several large-scale public works, including “Canoe Fan,” made of recycled canoes, currently on display in Gallup Park in Ann Arbor, Mich.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Baseball Tryouts

Baseball Tryouts set for August 17thWaubonsee Community College's baseball program will be holding an open tryout on Monday, August 17, beginning at 2:00 p.m. on the college's Sugar Grove campus ball field. Students enrolled in at least 12 credit hours for the 2015-2016 school year are eligible to participate. For more information, you can contact head coach Brad Unger at bunger@waubonsee.edu.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

More Than 1,000 Graduates Receive Degrees from Waubonsee

In a ceremony at Aurora’s historic Paramount Theatre on May 21, Waubonsee Community College awarded degrees to 1,035 graduates.

This number represents December 2014 graduates, along with May and August 2015 candidates.

Included in the total are 788 transfer-oriented associate degrees, 229 Associate in Applied Science degrees (in 30 different career areas), 42 Associate in General Studies degrees, one degree focused on fine arts and three degrees focused on engineering.

Delivering the commencement address was Anne Pramaggiore, President and CEO of ComEd.

Since its first graduating class in 1968, Waubonsee has conferred 21,716 degrees to local students.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Auto Body Repair Professor Named Outstanding Faculty

For the past several years, Waubonsee Community College’s Auto Body Repair Program and its students have received a variety of awards and accolades, including the Collision Repair Education Foundation (CREF) Makeover Grant and several first-place finishes in SkillsUSA competitions. And this month, the man behind the program, Assistant Professor of Auto Body Repair Andy MacDonald, of Plano, is receiving an honor of his own in the form of the college’s 2015 Outstanding Faculty Member Award.

Like all Waubonsee faculty members, MacDonald measures his success by the success of his students, which has been impressive since he joined the college on a full-time basis in 2007. Over the years, MacDonald’s students have earned 17 top-three finishes in state-level SkillsUSA contests, along with five top-10 finishes at the national level, including two national champions.

“Placing in these contests provides students an opportunity to build a portfolio for employers, increase their self-confidence and receive another level of evaluation of their work,” MacDonald said.

Waubonsee auto body student Jose Martinez-Joya, who was the 2014 SkillsUSA National Champion and who will graduate this year, is quick to credit MacDonald for his success. “[MacDonald] is a great, great person and very experienced,” Martinez-Joya said. “He really knows his stuff and can teach it to others.”

What MacDonald strives to teach is all-encompassing. “My lesson plans and classroom instruction require students to become critical thinkers using logic to problem-solve, to work on projects alone and with a team, learn from their mistakes, and integrate soft skills with hard skills every day,” MacDonald said.

Of course those hard skills in auto body repair are essential, and it’s essential that they’re up to date in a field that’s constantly changing. To that end, MacDonald dedicates himself, his students and the entire program to continual professional development efforts. MacDonald routinely hosts Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair (I-CAR) professional development courses in the Sugar Grove auto body shop, which offers him and his students a convenient way to keep up with the latest industry trends. Students graduate from Waubonsee’s program with several industry-recognized credentials, including an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certificate, and an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) safety and pollution certificate. They also have the opportunity to earn several Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certifications.

In 2011, the program received accreditation from the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF).

As with many career and technical education programs, it isn’t just the culture of the program that drives success but also the quality of its equipment and facilities, and those have been a passion of MacDonald’s since he arrived at Waubonsee. He has spearheaded several improvements, including the introduction of a solvent recycler, the development of an inventory system, and the addition of a computer lab since technology skills have become a requirement of the field.

MacDonald was also instrumental in the college applying for and receiving a prestigious $50,000 Ultimate Collision Education Makeover grant from the Collision Repair Education Foundation in 2013. The grant dollars were used to install a new, modern automotive paint spray booth at the Sugar Grove shop.

“The shop is so important to instruction because for one semester each academic year, it operates like a business,” MacDonald said. “We take in cars for minor repairs, and the students do the work, learning how to manage time, estimate and job cost. In this way, students graduate having done real work on cars with real problems.”

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College

Waubonsee Dedicates Field House, Celebrates 2020 Plan Completion

Throughout its history, Waubonsee Community College has made a habit of celebrating achievements.

Tuesday, the college celebrated yet again, as a collection of dignitaries, friends and supporters gathered to mark the completion of Waubonsee’s 2020 College Master Plan and to dedicate the final pieces of that plan, Waubonsee’s new Field House and renovated Erickson Hall.

“I am proud to be here today to celebrate this new building, and all the new buildings of the 2020 College Master Plan,” said Richard “Shorty” Dickson, Chairman of the Waubonsee Community College Board of Trustees, during Tuesday afternoon’s event. “These projects have allowed Waubonsee to greatly improve and expand our educational programs and services.”

Launched 14 years ago with the support of voters in referendums in 2002 and 2003, the 2020 College Master Plan has reshaped the college, adding an abundance of new classrooms, labs and learning spaces, and has positioned Waubonsee to respond to the needs of its communities in 2020 and beyond.

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.

When the Field House/Erickson Hall facility opened to students earlier this month, it marked the completion of the 2020 College Master Plan, both on budget and ahead of schedule.

Waubonsee President Dr. Christine Sobek noted, since 2001, the population within Waubonsee’s district has increased 41 percent and today, Waubonsee serves more than 32,000 students, including nearly 2,000 students who earned degrees and certificates in 2014 alone.

Dr. Sobek thanked the college’s board of trustees; hundreds of volunteers through the “Friends of Waubonsee” organization who helped educate voters and foster the positive community response to the 2002 and 2003 referendums; and hundreds more faculty, staff and students who gave of themselves to support the 2020 College Master Plan.

“I am thrilled to be here today to celebrate the official completion of the 2020 College Master Plan,” Dr. Sobek said. “It’s been a wonderful 14 year journey, and I again extend my heartfelt thanks to all who helped make our dream become a reality.”

Dr. Sobek said the Field House stands as a worthy capstone of the 2020 College Master Plan.

“The same teamwork that brought the 2020 buildings to life will be reflected inside the walls of our new Field House and renovated Erickson Hall, as the college’s 13 teams and individual athletes practice, train and compete here,” Dr. Sobek said. “They look to carry on the Chiefs’ winning tradition, which now spans almost half-a-century.”   

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

At the same time, the college rededicated Erickson Hall, Waubonsee’s longstanding gymnasium and athletic facility, to which the Field House is attached. While the Field House was under construction, beginning in 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 a seamless, first-class facility to support Waubonsee’s athletics programs, credit and noncredit physical education, wellness instruction and general recreation.

Dr. Deborah Lovingood, Waubonsee’s Executive Vice President of Educational Affairs and Chief Learning Officer, said the Field House project is a result of the work of “a talented team of Waubonsee coaches, faculty, staff and students.”

“Because of their teamwork, our students and community members have this beautiful new facility in which to gather, train, learn and play,” Dr. Lovingood said.

© 2012 Waubonsee Community College