Suffolk County Community College Change Agent Team

Scott Gianelli, Physical Sciences
Scott Mandia, Physical Sciences


Team Activities

Individual Accomplishments

Scott Gianelli

I have:

  • Started a multi-disciplinary dialogue on how to teach our students about climate change and global warming. 
  • Incorporated more active learning strategies into my classes.

I intend to:

  • Use Bloom's Taxonomy to better adapt my classes to a learning level that is appropriate for the course.
  • Adopt more active learning strategies that are suitable for online courses.

Scott Mandia

I have:

  • Demonstrated how using Bloom's Taxonomy in the classroom can help students achieve higher level thinking
  • Made faculty aware of matching course learning outcomes to assessments
  • How to discuss the politics of climate change in an objective manner
  • Educated faculty and staff on using the DiSC behavior profile tool to increase communication effectiveness

Team Accomplishments

Strengthening our Department/Program

Accomplishments/Action Plan:

  1. Increase number of geoscience and PHY majors by 10%
  2. Students will interpret information about climate change and its effects on the environment to reinforce scientific curiosity
  3. Increase student retention by 10% in climate change and PHY courses
  4. Increase the number of successful PHY transfers by 10%

Scientist Spotlights data not complete but showing promising results. Students see themselves as comparable to scientists. Other data available after semester ends.

Next Steps: Analyze pre- and post-survey data for Scientist Spotlights to see if student perceptions of scientists and selves has improved and if science may be a possible career.

Developing our Campus Community

Engaging our Colleagues:

  • Demonstrated how using Bloom's Taxonomy in the classroom can help students achieve higher level thinking
  • Made faculty aware of matching course learning outcomes to assessments
  • How to discuss the politics of climate change in an objective manner
  • Educated faculty and staff on using the DiSC behavior profile tool to increase communication effectiveness

After two workshops we have 22 enrolled. Excellent exit survey results. Next workshop on Dec. 6 (DiSC Behavior)

Next Steps: Workshop #3 and then perhaps follow-up questionnaires in Spring to assess level of incorporation of tools in colleagues depts.

Team Members


Scott Gianelli


Scott G. spent 16 years working at NASA/Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York City. He has developed an energy and the environment class and a graduate-level global climate course as well as multiple experiments for introductory physics labs. He has a Ph.D. in applied physics.

Courses

Scott G. teaches College Physics I, Physics I, II, and IV, and has taught Physics for Health Careers and Automotive Physics.

Scott Mandia


Scott M. is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and a 2014 AGU Ambassador Award winner. He co-founded and chairs the Board of the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund, a 501c3 organization. In 1995 he received the SUNY Chancellors Award for Outstanding Teaching.

Courses

Scott M. teaches Introduction to Weather and Global Climate Change.

Institution

Suffolk County Community College (also known as SUNY Suffolk) is the largest community college in the State of New York, serving about 26,000 students from 3 campuses on Long Island. Eighteen percent of its students are Hispanic or Latino.

Program/Department

The Physical Sciences Department includes courses in Astronomy, Atmospheric Science, Chemistry, Earth System Science, Environmental Policy/Studies, Geology, and Physics. There are 16 full time faculty and dozens of adjunct faculty at the Ammerman Campus. The Physics program has a few majors but mostly serves students in the health and engineering programs. The Earth & Space Sciences program mostly serves liberal arts majors who are required to take a lab science. The enrollment in this program has been steadily increasing even though college enrollment has been decreasing. There are also increasing numbers of majors in geology, meteorology, and astronomy. They attribute this increase in majors to increased course offerings, club activities, a GEOPATHs grant, Sean Tvelia's work with SAGE 2YC, and community outreach.

There are separate Physical Sciences Departments on each of the three campuses. Both Scotts are based at the Ammerman Campus.

Institutional demographic data is from IPEDS the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System, U.S. Department of Education, typically for the 2015-16 year as available.