New teammates, terms at DMACC Perry VanKirk Career Academy

Serving students this fall at the DMACC Perry VanKirk Career Academy are, from left, Career Advantage Counselor Tom Lipovac, Academic Advisor Connie Saenz, Career Advantage Counselor Stephanie Lopez and Director Eddie Diaz.

Serving students this fall at the DMACC Perry VanKirk Career Academy are, from left, Director Eddie Diaz, Career Advantage Counselor Stephanie Lopez, Academic Advisor Connie Saenz and Career Advantage Counselor Tom Lipovac.

With most classes at the DMACC Perry VanKirk Career Academy scheduled to start Wednesday, Aug, 26, students should be prepared for new faces on the Perry Center’s team and new class types that differ from traditional in-person, face-to-face instruction.

Two new Career Advantage counselors have joined the Perry DMACC staff, Stephanie Lopez and former PHS Activities Director Tom Lipovac, and former GEAR Up Iowa Coordinator Connie Saenz will be the Perry Center’s academic advisor.

Diaz said the counselors will meet with students at the Perry High School campus.

“We’ll also be using a different schedule this year,” Diaz said. “Classes will start at 8 a.m. instead of 7:45 a.m. in order to give students time to get to PHS for second- or third-period classes.”

Across DMACC’s dozen campuses and 55,000-member student body, five types of classes will be offered this fall in response to the SARS-CoV-2 global pandemic:

  1. Real-time virtual: Synchronous, real-time class meetings via Blackboard Collaborate
  2. Online: Asynchronous, anytime instruction
  3. Web-blended (real-time virtual + online): A mixture of synchronous and asynchronous instruction
  4. Web-blended (face-to-face + online): A mixture of on-campus, face-to-face instruction and asynchronous instruction
  5. Face-to-face: Traditional on-campus, face-to-face instruction

Diaz said most classes at the VanKirk Career Academy will be web-blended, with a few classes — welding, automotive, nursing — meeting face to face.

In a June statement, DMACC President Rob Denson said students will have access to the same high-quality academic and student supports in all environments throughout the fall term. He said the college has developed new policies and protocols to help protect on-campus students, faculty and staff from contracting COVID-19, such as expanded cleaning protocols, safety signage, fewer students in classrooms, staggered class times and mandatory face masks.


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