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Student Success | Staff Updates

Niagara College International Staff Connect |
February 2020 (Vol 5, Issue 4)


This letter is in response to Director of International, Sean Coote, accepting the role of managing director of the College’s operations in Saudi Arabia on an interim basis and the director of Marketing and Student Recruitment, Dorita Pentesco, accepting the role of acting director, International during the secondment period. Pentesco began the role on February 3.

Letter from Dorita Pentesco

I am excited to have the opportunity to join the International team for this secondment period. Since beginning the role earlier this month, I have been greeted with many warm and welcoming faces. Thank you to all those who have reached out to send their well wishes and offered their support, it has been greatly appreciated.  

During my time at the College, I have seen the excellent work that the International team does and am looking forward to learning more.  

I hope to meet everyone on the team over the coming months and will be spending time at both the Niagara-On-The-Lake and Welland Campuses as well as the Niagara Corporate Business Centre. Please come by and say hello if you haven’t already – my door is always open.  

Looking forward to my time with International,  

Dorita Pentesco 

Word from the Watercooler

The dynamic duo is pictured after a session on February 18.

Did you know Laura Fakla and her sidekick Sugoi volunteer with the Therapy Tails program at the Daniel J. Patterson Campus (NOTL)? Schedule permitting, they hope to volunteer on Laura’s lunch break the below remaining dates this term and will be located in the cafeteria foyer:
March 17
March 31
April 14
If you happen to be in the area during that time frame, be sure to stop in and say hello to Sugoi!  
Curious about how Laura came about the name Sugio? She shared following video to highlight the meaning behind this Japanese word:


Honouring Dan’s leadership through the Dan Patterson Legacy Fund 

A message from Sean Kennedy, senior vice-president International, Steve Hudson, senior vice-president academic and learner services, and Pam Skinner, senior vice-president Corporate Services: 

As Dan Patterson concludes his extraordinary 25 year career as the fifth president of Niagara College, we are proud to launch a special fundraising campaign to recognize his legacy. 

As the senior vice-president team, we are pleased to have each made a personal donation to The Dan Patterson Legacy Fund to honour Dan and his commitment to Niagara College. Please join us in a gesture of gratitude for Dan’s tremendous legacy by making your own gift to the Dan Patterson Legacy Fund, to support our students to achieve their academic and career dreams. 

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A message from Steve Hudson: Interim director, Marketing and Recruitment

A message from Steve Hudson, senior vice president, Academic and Learning Services: 

Further to the previous announcement regarding interim appointments in the International division, I’m pleased to announce that Shelley Panetta has accepted the position of interim director, Marketing and Recruitment until the end of August, 2020. Shelley replaces Dorita Pentesco, who is serving as interim director, International, and she will report to me during the term of this appointment. 

Please join me in congratulating Shelley on this interim divisional leadership role. 

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International Admissions/ IRT:

I am pleased to share that Hua (Heather) Gu was the successful candidate in the search for our new Inquiry Response Team Clerk (Full-Time). Heather has obtained a Bachelor of Arts (English) from Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, Master of Arts (Journalism) from Jinan University, Master of Arts (Education) from Brock University, as well as completing the Immigration Consultant certificate program at Humber College. She has prior experience as a Liaison Officer at Columbia International College, and as a Student Service Supervisor at Vineridge Academy where she developed outstanding relationship management and customer services skills. Heather is also fluent in 3 languages (English, Mandarin and Cantonese), and is eager to join the NC International team! Please help me in welcoming Heather to Niagara College when she begins her role with us on Monday, February 10th. 

Cheers, Jason 

International Finance:

The next month will see several changes for our finance team as Jackie transitions to a year of maternity leave on March 20th.
I am very pleased to announce that Limei is the successful candidate for the Student Accounts Clerk maternity fill.  Limei will have an official start date in this position of March 2, 2020. With Limei’s transition to the frontline, Daniela will be cross training on commissions and taking over Limei’s current portfolio in the Finance Clerk role.
I am also excited to announce that Bindu Gautam has accepted a one year contract to fill Daniela’s Finance Clerk role in payments and refunds. Bindu has already begun working with us in a casual capacity and training with Daniela.  Some of you may remember Bindu as a former Student Assistant and Business Accounting graduate at Niagara College. Bindu will begin with us on March 9th and continue till Jackie’s return in 2021. 
Thank you for your patience as we get everyone trained up and operating at full capacity.



Thank you to Laurie Richards, executive assistant to the president
Residents at St. Charles Village offered a taste of Hindu culture by Recreation Therapy student
2020 Award of Excellence Nominations now open
Two NC profs travel to Germany as coaches for Culinary Team Canada
Subscribe to NC Alert for urgent notifications from the College

Student Success

Name: Alma Fuentes
Hometown: Ontario, Canada
Program: Dental Hygiene

Be World Ready Experience: “This trip taught me about interacting respectfully and mindfully with people from different cultures. India is, in general, much more conservative of a culture than here in Canada, so learning how to dress, speak, and act appropriately for their culture has prepared me for interactions with people from other cultures as well. I feel as though I am more “work-ready” because I was able to successfully work alongside professionals from many disciplines, thus preparing me for my future as a dental hygienist where I will be engaging in inter-professional communications daily.”

Through our Be World Ready program, Niagara College International supports leadership development in NC students by providing diverse, global perspectives and opportunities, allowing students to develop intercultural skills and global citizenship values.
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