The Seattle Central Griot - March 31, 2020

A message from the President

The last month has been a confusing blur.

Dr. Sheila Edwards LangeSince the first report of COVID-19 case in Washington at the end of February, the lives of our students and staff have been upended. We have all had to adapt on the fly, teaching, working and learning remotely where possible, while we worry about our vulnerable friends and relatives. Our common sights and routines are over, and our campus sits empty and silent.

In the middle of this chaos, I’ve been moved by the strength and resourcefulness of Seattle Central staff and faculty. You have all put in the hours and adapted yourselves to conditions that changed several times in the same day. I see you learning new skills and reaching out to students in new ways. Inherent in all your actions is the sense that we need to be there for all our students, especially those who lack the resources and easy access to technology to do well in this new reality. 

You have done this and more, while juggling the uncertainty and fear in your own lives.

I thank you deeply for all you do, and for all that you will do over the next few months, to help our students and our college to succeed against this tide. If there is a reason for hope in this darkness, it is in the way that we have come together – with six feet of separation, of course – to serve our students and our community.

Stay safe, everyone.

Sheila Edwards Lange, PhD
President, Seattle Central College


a screen shot of the virtual town hall, with a powerpoint slide and an ASL interpreter

Virtual town hall offers updates
President Sheila Edwards Lange and her leadership team held a virtual town hall on March 26 to answer questions from staff, faculty, and students. The session was held remotely using Zoom, with the bulk of questions submitted ahead of time. It was a frank conversation, and we received important and useful feedback that we will apply in our response to the COVID-19 crisis. 

The video of the forum is available at The page also has a document with answers to questions that were not covered in the meeting due to time.

Call in campaign to help with enrollment
Admissions and Outreach services is planning to run a phone campaign to existing students, to encourage them to enroll and continue their studies at Seattle Central. The campaign will rely on staff, volunteers, and resources such as the district CRM to target and personally appeal to students. To volunteer please e-mail Chris Maund  or call 206.934.6314 by Wednesday, April 1. The campaign will be supplemented with digital advertising on social media channels. 

images of students in class and in the field

Foundation raises funds for students affected by downturn
The Seattle Colleges Foundation has started a COVID-19 emergency fund fundraising campaign to support Seattle Colleges students who have lost their jobs, are struggling with childcare, or suffer health issues from the COVID-19 outbreak. So far, 19 Seattle Central employees have donated for a total of $2,530. The fund has a goal of raising $500,000. To make a contribution, visit

Update your 25 live events
If you or your department have placed items in the calendar of events our site, please update them to reflect cancellations or a move to a remote format.

a lighted sign of Believe displays above the dessert dash table

Believe Gala suspended 
A notification went out on March 13 announcing the postponement of Seattle Central College’s Annual Believe Gala to June 3, 2020. The planning committee is keeping an eye on the developments of COVID-19 and will keep everyone informed of any changes. Regardless, Seattle Central is committed to our annual effort to raise funds for students and is thinking creatively on best avenues of doing so given our circumstances. 

census logo

The Census counts. Don’t be left behind
Despite the COVID-19 outbreak, the U.S. Census is still working to make everyone in the United States count. 

You should have received a mailed invitation to participate in the 2020 Census. The note includes an ID that you can use to fill out your household information online, but some households may receive a census form. Whatever the invitation, you can submit your household information online, by phone, or by mail.

The Census influences the federal funding that your state will receive based on that state’s population. It also determines the number of representatives in the United States Congress, and the size and arrangement of electoral districts. It affects everything from the support your city gets for fire services, to the party breakdown of your state legislature and senate.

For more details, visit

Joanne Jones

Seattle Central student featured in CCBA conference
Joanne Jones, a bachelor of science student in the Applied Behavioral Science program at Seattle Central College, was honored at the March 1 annual conference of the Community College Baccalaureate Association in Seattle. Joanne was one of two Seattle area students awarded a $500 scholarship at the conference.

Joanne is a first-generation college student and a 33-year-old mother of four, who has proven to be an extremely motivated and passionate learner with a deep commitment to her education. Joanne currently serves a Substance Use Disorder Counselor trainee and is working toward her full counseling license with plans to work with children in the foster care system, as well as juveniles to stop the prison pipeline.

Click here to see video of an interview with Joanne


As you may know, the March 29 Campus Compact Award Ceremony that was supposed to celebrate the college’s Institutional Transformation award was been cancelled. But a bit of silver lining is this wonderful video spotlighting the ARE program. Thanks to SCCTV for producing this for us pro bono and for all who participated in its production. But most of all, a huge thank you to all of you who make Seattle Central a responsive, transformational place for our students day in and day out – the ARE program is truly a shining example of what makes this college great. - Emily Thurston. Associate Director of Community Relations & Events

Seattle Central College's communications and marketing team brought home some metal from this year's National Council for Marketing and Public Relations Paragon Awards. The ceremony was held remotely. Our team won a bronze award for our recruitment folder design and two gold awards for excellence in writing, one for short form and the other for long form.