American Association of Adjunct Educators (AAAE) Post-Conference

Saturday, February 25, 12:00-2:15 p.m.
Hosted at the Renaissance Austin Hotel
9721 Arboretum Blvd., Austin, Texas

The American Association of Adjunct Education (AAAE) is partnering with TCCTA to host its annual conference in conjunction with the TCCTA Annual Convention. AAAE provides professional development to adjunct faculty across the country.

The Adjunct Faculty Track/AAAE Conference will consist of various events. Thursday, February 23rd is the TCCTA banquet. Friday, February 24th will be the AAAE general session at 4:00 pm. Saturday, February 25th is when the breakout sessions will be held. There are a total of six sessions to choose from and each one is dynamic.

Registration Required

I want to attend!

  1. Go online to TCCTA Member Portal: tccta.org/portal
    • Become a TCCTA Associate Member for the low cost of $35
    • Register for the 70th Annual Convention (NOTE: Many of our collegiate partners are supporting their faculty by paying for your registration fee! See if your college has offered to pay your registration fee)
    • Register for AAAE’s Post-Conference ($25)
    • Buy a ticket for TCCTA’s Annual Banquet ($35) where AAAE will be honoring its Adjunct Faculty of the Year
  2. Make your reservation at the Courtyard by Marriott Austin Northwest/Arboretum (Host hotel is full)

TCCTA & AAAE Event Agenda for Adjunct Faculty

Thursday, February 23, 6:30 p.m.

TCCTA General Session and Banquet
“A Systems Approach to Student Success”

Dr. Judith A. Ramaley, President Emerita and Distinguished Professor of Public Service at Portland State University

Please join us then as we announce the recipient of AAAE’s Adjunct of the Year award.

Friday, February 24, 8:00 a.m. – 5:15 p.m.

8:00–9:15 a.m.
Great Ideas for Teaching Students (G.I.F.T.S.)

The highly popular GIFTS, 10 minutes sessions, allow participants to sample a variety of useful teaching techniques. These brief programs offer specific ideas for teaching and are designed to be of practical use to educators in all disciplines.

9:30 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.
Section Programs

Discover the wealth of knowledge awaiting you at over 100 discipline specific programs from Accounting to Welding.

1:00 – 3:45 p.m.
Changing a Complex Organization Requires Listening to — and Including — Everyone

Finding Coherence in the Midst of Change

At this year’s Annual Convention, we will explore several complex, inter-related issues involved in the student success movement. We will begin by considering how systems work, and how “systems thinking” can help organize our approach to the complex — and simultaneous — initiatives our colleges are engaged in. Judith Ramaley, who has led significant and successful organizational change during her career in higher education, will lead a plenary session on “systems thinking” to begin the conversation. Following that, attendees will have an opportunity to engage in facilitated dialogues on one of three topics, including:

  • 2017 Student Success Workshop: Thinking in SystemsGuided Pathways — Cynthia Ferrell, Director of the Texas Success Center, will lead discussions on the faculty role in guided pathways
  • Dual Credit Issues — Members of TCCTA’s Dual Credit Council will help lead conversations on “best practices” in dual credit programs, from the practitioner’s perspective
  • Multi-Disciplinary Discussions — Creating a coherent structure for students to navigate requires faculty and department chairs to communicate across disciplines. This session will explore the reasons why these discussions are important and how best to arrange them.

At the completion of these sessions, Dr. Ramaley will join in a discussion of how to under-stand these issues as related elements in a strategy of improving student success. Regardless of one’s role in the institution, participants will learn meaningful ways to  engage in the fundamentally collaborative work of educating students.

Friday, February 24, 4:00 – 5:15 p.m.
Adjunct Faculty General Session

Essie Childers, Blinn College“Creativity and Diversity in Education”
Essie Childers, Professor of Education, Blinn College–Bryan

Community Colleges of the 21st Century continues to offer educational opportunity to all students from many different cultures and backgrounds. As educators, we must meet the challenges of the changing landscape of our classrooms. It is imperative that faculty pause and reflect on the various learning styles of their students and revisit their curriculum selection.

Are we teaching the way we were taught? Can students see themselves in the material you have selected for them to read? Do you offer students a volition in their presentations? This session will answer these questions and more by providing practical suggestions for creating a community of learners to succeed.

We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value no matter what their color.
~Maya Angelou, Diversity Offering a Place for Everyone

Professor Essie Childers began her work as a high school business teacher in Austin, Texas. While completing her Masters at the University of Texas at Tyler, she substituted on the elementary, middle and high school levels. She has taught for 30 years mentoring and encouraging students to visualize success in order to reach their academic and personal goals. She engages and fosters critical thinking through reflective journaling. Essie is currently the Immediate Past President of the Texas Community College Teachers Association, comprised of over 6,000 teachers and administrators in the state of Texas. Dr. Childers is the 2014 recipient of College Reading & Learning Association’s Distinguished Teaching Award, 2014 Outstanding Service Award from Blinn Professional Association, the 2013 OnCourse Ambassador of the Year Award, Faculty Partner for Cengage Learning, and a consultant for the American Association for Adjunct Educators (AAAE). Additionally, Essie serves on the QEP Development Team at Blinn College, and serves as a Senior Fellow of the Blinn College FutureWorks Academy. Essie has presented at numerous conferences such as, TCCTA, NADE, OnCourse, Cengage, NISOD, CRLA, CASP and AAAE. In 2013, Essie published her first book, Packing Tools for Success Beyond Middle School, and established the Young Ladies Success Summit. When Essie is not teaching, or presenting at professional conferences, she enjoys watching old movies, traveling, eating at different restaurants, and enjoying her grandchildren. Essie is a graduate of the University of Texas at Tyler, Abilene Christian University, and Walden University completing a Graduate Certificate in Adult Learning in 2014. Essie is a Professor of Student Success (Learning Frameworks/Study Skills) and Developmental Reading courses at Blinn College in Bryan, TX. 

Saturday, February 25, 8:00 a.m. – 2:15 p.m.

7:30 – 8:45 a.m.
Personal Financial Planning

9:00 – 11:45 a.m.
Section Programs


Saturday, February 25, 12:00 – 2:15 p.m.
American Association of Adjunct Educators Post-Conference

Membership in TCCTA and registration required

12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Adjunct Breakouts

Cruz Imelda Wicks,

“Cultural Intelligence: A Skill Educators Must Have”
Cruz Imelda Wicks, University of Texas Medical Branch

“Working in a culturally diverse environment, however, makes it easy to forget that the people you are dealing with have perceptions and perspectives different from yours. Developing a sense of cultural intelligence is important to learn how to deal positively with people from different cultures. Enhancing cultural intelligence is possible and doing so will allow you to become more compassionate and sensitive to other people. Cultural intelligence also plays a huge role in determining cooperation among people from various backgrounds, traditions, nationalities, disciplines, functions and cultures. Cultural intelligence is a crucial skill in today’s world. As we are working and living in a multicultural community, acquiring a different set of perspectives, knowledge and skills is important in order to succeed. You need to be prepared to communicate and work with people from different backgrounds, races and cultures. Gaining knowledge about other cultures is no longer optional. It is necessary in order to learn, understand and deal with different situations competently.” Margo Paz

Imelda Wicks is from the Lower Rio Grande Valley. She received her bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Texas at Brownsville and a master’s degree in cross-cultural studies from the University of Houston-Clear Lake. Ms. Wicks worked for over six years as the director of a non-profit organization in Brownsville, Texas, and as a research and resident assistant at the University of Texas at Brownsville. For over five years, Imelda worked at the University of Houston-Clear Lake in the Office of International and Intercultural Student Services creating programs and events to promote diversity and inclusion. She has also taught as adjunct at this institution. She currently works at the University of Texas Medical Branch as Human Resources Coordinator, Diversity and Inclusion.

Dr. Merrill Mayper, University of Phoenix
Teaching Acceptance of Differences and Equality across General Education Curricula: Changing Perspectives on Multiculturalism and Social Acceptance through Transformative Learning”
Dr. Merrill Andrea Mayper, University of Phoenix

As the United States becomes more diverse nation, institutions of higher learning continue to promote diversity education on their campuses. The purpose of this study was to go beyond courses designed to teach cultural diversity specifically, and to discover how higher education faculty could include lessons on acceptance of difference and equality in the various disciplines of general education taught in today’s colleges and universities. Faculty could thereby create an opportunity for students to challenge their mental models and, through transformative learning, change their perceptions on how they view the world. Using the Delphi method, this study brought together a panel of 15 experienced general education faculty, who came to an agreement on ten attributes and abilities a faculty must have to incorporate lessons of diversity in a variety of general education classes. The panel also agreed upon ten challenges a faculty member might have with this effort. The results of this study will provide a foundation for faculty development on how to develop these attributes and abilities and overcome the challenges of incorporating diversity lessons in general education.

Dr. Merrill Mayper was born and raised in NY and moved to Phoenix, AZ in 1974. She earned her Master of Arts in Organizational Management from University of Phoenix where she has been a Certified Advanced Facilitator since 2000 in both online and live classroom modalities. Currently she works for the State of Arizona as a trainer for the Department of Economic Security.

1:15 – 2:15 p.m.
Adjunct Breakouts

“Working with LGBTQ Students: A Guide for Educators”
Cruz Imelda Wicks
, University of Texas Medical Branch

Schools are places of learning and a reflection of societies. The climate of a school and classroom has a direct impact on both how well students learn and how well they interact with their classmates. According to recent Human Rights Campaign survey, LGBTQ students report being harassed at school – both verbally and physically – at twice the rate of non-LGBTQ students. With heightened stressors like bullying, harassment and a lack of role models, LGBTQ students are more likely to experience negative educational outcomes. At this workshop you will Page 2 of 2 learn how to develop skills to be an advocate and ally to your LGBTQ student population. Also you will learn how to create a safe zone for LGBTQ students in your campus.

Vimlarani Chopra, Houston Community College SystemDiversity – A Catalyst for Creativity”
Dr. Vimlarani Chopra, Houston Community College System

One of the most important ingredients for creative thinking is diversity. We all know that diverse teams produce more creative results than teams in which all members are from a similar background. It seems obvious that a group of people with diverse individual expertise would be better than a homogeneous group at solving complex, non-routine problems. It is less obvious that social diversity should work in the same way—yet the science shows that it does. This is not only because people with different backgrounds bring new information. Simply interacting with individuals who are different forces group members to prepare better, to anticipate alternative viewpoints and to expect that reaching consensus will take effort. This presentation will cover two topics:

  1. Is creativity a goal to strive for in (higher) education? If so, how do we measure it?
  2. What are classroom strategies for improving creativity?

In conclusion, diversity can be considered a catalyst for innovation and creativity.

Vimlarani Chopra finished her Ph.D. in microbiology in 1982. Since then she has had intensive research experience and funding from National organizations like NASA, ATP, and NIH for her research related to cancer research. She has published widely in national and international journals and presented at various national and international conferences. For the last ten years she has been teaching biological sciences at various community colleges and universities in face to face and online settings. She has received other certifications from Sloan Consortium and Center for Excellence in Education. Last year she was the recipient of the Adjunct of the year award from excellence in teaching from AAAE.

Register Now!

2017 Convention Partner Colleges

The following institutions have partnered with TCCTA to cover Convention registration for their full- and part-time educators:

San Antonio College (Max attendees: 30), Angelina College, Austin Community College, Brazosport College, Dallas County Community College District, Hill College, Howard College, Jacksonville College, Lee College, McLennan Community College, Midland College, North Central Texas College, Northeast Texas Community College, Ranger College, San Jacinto College, Trinity Valley Community College, Tyler Junior College, Vernon College, Victoria College, Wharton County Junior College (More colleges added weekly)