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   “We focused on language that emergency medical responders would need to communicate with patients at the scene.” ~ Dr. Jaydene Elvin
    The Online Teaching: From Surviving to Thriving was a timely subject to offer. “Instruction around the world had to swiftly move online due to COVID-19, which left many gaps for students and instructors alike,” says Lejla Tricic, who taught the course. She is a lecturer in the English Department and serves as a quality assurance training facilitator on campus. The curriculum covered course design, time management strategies, and other related subjects.
“ In my opinion, digital learning is here to
Paul Sanchez, an adjunct instructor at Fresno City College, took Tricic’s course because he agrees with her assessment: online instruction will only grow in importance. Sanchez
– who teaches English – provided an example of
what he learned. “For a lot of us, literature helps us to understand ourselves and have more com- passion and empathy while giving us hope. The class helped me understand there are teaching principles to communicate that in an online class.”
The course not only addressed immediate needs but can benefit more teachers in the future, San- chez says: “When I’m in other trainings, I can share the information with others.”
Meanwhile, the Project Management for the Work-
place course attracted people from professions as
varied as the military, manufacturing and medi-
cine. Olustee Steve Smith, a safety and training of-
ficer with the City of Fresno, taught the class. Unlike the Spanish and online teaching courses – which were new offerings – Project Management was taught before the pandemic. Some of the topics covered were the phases of a project – initiation, planning, execu- tion, monitoring, and closing – as well as risk management.
“I was considered ‘essential’ so I could relate to my students, and I wanted to help them out,” Smith says. “It was great the class was offered to essential workers to show appreciation to them during the pandemic.”
Robert Goddard – a civilian employee of the U.S. Navy at Lemoore Naval Air Station – took the course. His job in public works in- volves him with Navy personnel as well as senior managers and construction workers in civilian organizations. “Mr. Smith did a good job of covering the importance of communicating effec- tively,” Goddard says. “That’s important from the beginning of a project and is the key to success.” Goddard – a graduate of Fresno State whose daughter is a current student – says he’s proud the university offered the course during the pandemic. “It’s great that
Fresno State was thinking of the com- munity as a whole.”
McSherry, the paramedic, shares that sentiment. As he helped the man on the bathroom floor, their ability to communicate reassured the patient. “That helped the whole process,” McSherry says.
He also could reassure the man’s wife, who was stressed by her husband’s collapse. “I was able to let her know I knew a little Spanish, and it would help if she talked a little slower. I was able to give her a bit of reassurance that I was there to help.”
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tay, and there is no going back,” Tricic says.
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