CTC to host Fast Track Finale for new students and info session for parents

Central Texas College (CTC) will host a free three-day workshop for all 2014 high school graduates interested in attending CTC this fall. The Fast Track Finale will be held in the Fine Arts Building (Bldg. 112) August20-22 from 8:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. each day. The free workshop is designed to acquaint incoming CTC freshmen about the college and its services. Online registration for the event is open now at http://www.ctcd.edu/collegenow/fasttrack.html.

Fast Track Finale is designed to help incoming freshmen meet classmates, become better acquainted with the campus layout and the many students services offered by CTC. Students can get assistance with registration, guidance and counseling, establishing degree plans and financial aid during the event. “This is more than just a sit-down, hear a lecture type of event,” noted Kim Christian, event coordinator. “Students will be very active and enjoy energetic, upbeat team building activities and break-out sessions.”

During Fast Track, students will also get a tour of the Texas A&M-Central Texas campus (transportation will be provided). Students can also participate in a talent show, pep rally and other activities. Lunch will be provided the first two days. The third day will consist of a new student orientation to further acquaint students with campus services.

This is a great way for new students to receive valuable information about campus life, college readiness, the various campus clubs and organizations and school policies,” said Christian. “In addition to making new friends, students will also get to meet and develop a rapport with many of the people such as counselors, the financial aid staff and others who can help them become successful during their time here at CTC.”

Space in the Fast Track Finale is limited so students are requested to reserve their spot by registering online as soon as possible. Parents can also register online to attend the parent information session August 20 from 8:30 – 11:30 a.m. Questions about the Fast Track Finale can be directed to the CTC Recruiting and Retention office at 254-526-1104.

Posted in Student Activities, Texas Campus News

GeekFest wristbands on sale now

The fifth annual GeekFest, a celebration of all things gaming, fantasy, anime, technology and science fiction, will be held August 15-17 at the Mayborn Science Theatre and the Anderson Campus Center on the campus of Central Texas College (CTC). Featured attractions include gaming tournaments for cash prizes, “humans vs. zombies” game, costume, cake and anime contests, seminars and workshops, vendors and the traditional showing of “Rocky Horror Picture Show” with a live interactive cast accompanying the movie.

Wristbands for GeekFest went on sale August 1 and can be purchased during normal operating hours at the Mayborn Science Theater. Wristbands are required for all GeekFest patrons over the age of 12. With the wristband, patrons receive admission to all programs and dome activities (including “Rocky Horror Picture Show” and “The Lego Movie”), the vendor area and transportation between buildings. Advance wristband purchases are $10 for a three-day all-inclusive pass or $40 for a VIP pass which includes a t-shirt, VIP badge, swag bag and reserved seating for dome events. At-the-door purchases are $18 for a three-day all-inclusive pass, $12 for a one-day pass and $50 for the VIP pass. Discounts are available for door purchases for military personnel and family members.

The event opens Friday, August 17 at 6:30 p.m. with a family-friendly “Harry Potter Yule Ball” Costumes are encouraged for the event. Also on Friday more adult activities are scheduled at the Mayborn Science Theater starting at 6:30 p.m. with music, LAN and console gaming and a showing of “Rocky Horror Picture Show” at 10 p.m. The show features a live shadow cast by the Austin Queerios. Seating begins at 9 p.m.

Saturday’s festivities begin at 10 a.m. with the Humans vs. Zombies competition and a Quidditch demonstration and tournament for all ages. Numerous workshops, costume contests for kids and adults, anime contests, a cake decorating contest, prize drawings, robotics demonstrations, film screenings, Magic tournaments and gaming tournaments will be held throughout the day. Movie presentations include “The Princess Bride” at 6 p.m. and “Rocky Horror Picture Show” featuring a local shadow cast at 10 p.m. in the Mayborn Science Theater. Sunday’s movie is “The Lego Movie” at 4 p.m.

Several of the workshops and seminars on the agenda include cosplay, Dungeons and Dragons, Heroscape, LARPing, role play gaming, Star Trek trivia and a variety of different Star Wars and Harry Potter-themed subjects. A variety of new seminars have been added this year.

For a complete schedule of events, workshops, film screenings and more, visit online at http://www.starsatnight.org/geekfest.

Posted in Events, Mayborn Planetarium

CTC second most popular school for soldiers using tuition assistance; third overall among all military

Central Texas College (CTC) moved up one ranking to become the second most popular school chosen by active-duty soldiers who use tuition assistance (TA) to pay for their higher education. In a survey compiled by Military Times magazine for fiscal year 2013, CTC was second after ranking third for the past two years. Four-year, for-profit school American Military University (AMU) of the American Public University System ranked first while last year’s number two school the University of Maryland-University College, a public institution, finished third for soldiers.

Military Times requested tuition assistance data on students, course enrollments and funds from all branches of the military including the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Army National Guard and Coast Guard. Among the other military branches, CTC ranked third for Marines using TA and seventh for Navy personnel. Overall, CTC was the third most popular school for all military personnel using TA with 21,662 students using TA taking 50,297 courses.

CTC reported more than 16,300 soldiers using TA to pay for their college education last year. The school also reported a graduation rate of 11 percent. More than 2,200 Marines used TA through CTC with a graduation rate of 11 percent. The Navy reported 1,941 sailors used TA at CTC also with an 11 percent graduation rate.

In total, the Army logged 81,433 TA students in fiscal year 2013 among the list’s top 10 schools. The top 10 schools for the Air Force reported 69,514 TA students, while the Navy had 26,547 TA students. The Marine Corps reported 18,234 students and the Coast Guard had 4,618 TA students among the top 10 schools on the list.

“Military Times” began tracking the most popular colleges for active-duty students in 2009. Since then it has seen a sharp increase in those choosing for-profit colleges. Among the top 10 TA schools for soldiers, five of the schools were for-profit, three were private institutions and two were public schools.

CTC offers both online and classroom options for military members with sites on 27 military installations across the continental U.S., Alaska and Hawaii. CTC has sites in 14 countries and three continents covering Europe and the Middle East; 30 sites in the Pacific Far East including Korea, mainland Japan and Okinawa; and Naval ships at sea. In addition to classroom and online classes, CTC also offers alternative education delivery methods such as hybrid or blended courses, courses on compact discs (CDs) and personal digital assistants (PDAs).

Posted in Military Education, Texas Campus News, World-Wide Campuses

CTC to conduct emergency training drill Wednesday, July 30

CTC will conduct an emergency response training drill on Wednesday, July 30 starting at 8 a.m. The event will occur in the library and campus mall area (between the library and Bldg. 106). The library will be on lockdown during the drill. The Administrative Building (Bldg. 108) will serve as the emergency command center.

The purpose of the drill is to evaluate CTC’s current emergency response procedures. While this is only a drill, it will be handled as if it were an actual emergency to better gauge CTC’s response team and procedures. Students and employees should be advised this is only a drill and should avoid the library area during the drill as it will be under lockdown. Again, this is only a training drill.

Posted in Texas Campus News

CTC trustees approve student online resource

During its July meeting, the Central Texas College (CTC) District Board of Trustees approved the $150,000 purchase of a new online resource for service members, veterans and family members. Known as MyCompass, the service provides personalized academic and career guidance.

“This resource will provide our students around the world with access to real-time data to help them plan their education and meet their ultimate educational goals,” said Jim Yeonopolus, president – CTC Continental and International Operations. “By entering their academic history, military or civilian experience and training, they can instantly visualize their path to a degree as well as gain up-to-date information on careers and potential earnings.”

The board also voted to increase the requirement for competitive bidding of goods and services from $25,000 to $50,000, a figure last set by the Texas legislature in 1994. “This change is in line with House Bill 987 relating to competitive procurement requirements for local governments,” said Michele Carter, director of Business Services. The board then approved electronic bidding as a method for receiving bids and proposals with appropriate guidelines.

In other board action, a second option period was authorized for a contract with Richards/Carlberg for branding, design and online marketing consulting services through August 31, 2015. The Houston-based advertising agency was contracted in the fall of 2013 and developed a new logo and branding for the college.

Posted in Military Education, Texas Campus News, World-Wide Campuses

CTC to introduce EagleMail – student email accounts


Central Texas College (CTC) will soon provide a new email address for its students worldwide. Known as EagleMail, students will be assigned a new free CTC email account upon registering for the fall 2014 semester. It will be the preferred email address for any student electronic communications from the college.

The new e-mail accounts will automatically be created no sooner than seven days prior to the class start date or within 24 hours of the student registering for class. The new e-mail will be formatted with the student’s first name initial, full last name. In case of duplicate names, a sequential number will be assigned to the address. Students will receive an activation email within three days of account creation. It contains log-in and other instructions for accessing the new email.

“The activation email will be sent to the student’s email address with which they currently receive CTC communication,” explained Barbara Merlo, CTC director-marketing and outreach. “From there, students can log-in with their temporary assigned password then create a password to access the account. The new email accounts are based on the gmail platform powered by Google, so many students will be familiar with the interface.”

Merlo noted students who do not wish to keep up with another email address or prefer to use an existing email can simply forward e-mails from their EagleMail address to their personal or work email address. ”Since all official communication from CTC will be sent to the EagleMail address, we encourage students to use the new address or forward their emails accordingly,” she said.

The first email accounts will be activated July 28 and students may receive an activation email as early as July 29 for classes starting the first week in August. Returning and new students registering on July 28 for fall semester classes, which starts August 25, will have the new email account created on August 18 and receive the activation email on August 19.

All CTC students across the globe, with the exception of Continuing Education students, will receive an EagleMail account. “CTC’s military students using the GoArmyEd portal will still receive any CTC correspondence that goes through that portal to whatever address they have already have established,” said Merlo. But we encourage these students to change their email address in the portal to the new CTC student email address so they do not miss any relevant CTC communications.”

For some online students, Merlo noted their initial class notification may be sent to their existing email address. “Because of the way online students are entered into our Blackboard distance learning management system, local students who register for an online class the week prior to the class start date may receive their initial Blackboard notification to the email address already on file.”

Once the fall semester is underway, access to the new EagleMail address can be made through a log-in icon on each student page of the CTC website. Students needing technical assistance such as help with the log-in, can contact the CTC IT Helpdesk.

Posted in Military Education, Student Activities, Texas Campus News, World-Wide Campuses

CTC fall semester online registration now open

Central Texas College (CTC) students can now register online for the fall 2014 semester. Returning students and new students who have completed the academic advisement process can then register online through the CTC WebAdvisor system. The first day of the fall semester is Monday, August 25.

Academic advisement for new students and returning students looking to discuss or change their degree plan is being now through August 8 in Student Services (Bldg. 119). Students seeking advisement should follow the pre-set schedule which is based on the last four digits of the student’s Social Security number. The advisement schedule is available online at the CTC website by clicking the “Students” link or in the Fall Semester Schedule Bulletin. Upon completion of the advisement process, students can then register for classes through online through WebAdvisor and avoid any delays associated with walk-in registration.

New students must first complete the admissions process and all required testing before undergoing academic advisement and registration. Students are encouraged to do this as soon as possible to avoid extended delays once registration opens.

Walk-in registration will be held August 11 – 22 in Bldg. 119 from 7:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 7:30 – 11 a.m. on Friday. Walk-in registration is also based on the last four digits of the student’s Social Security Number and students are required to follow the pre-set walk-in schedule. Late registration will be conducted August 25-28.

Students interested in taking distance learning or online classes starting with an August start date may register on WebAdvisor now through August 21. Registration for online classes with a September start date is ongoing now through September 18 and through October 16 for online classes with an October start date.

Students interested in taking classes at the CTC Fort Hood campus can now register for classes which start August 18. Registration is at Bldg. 3201, located at 72nd Street and 761st Tank Battalion Avenue on Fort Hood. Registration times are 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. For more information about Fort Hood classes, call 254-526-1906. The last day of registration is August 21.

For students using the CTC service area sites covering Burnet, Lampasas, Marble Falls and Gatesville, registration is as follows: Burnet – July 28 – August 22, CTC office; Lampasas – July 28 – August 25, Lampasas High School; Marble Falls – now through August 22, CTC office; and Gatesville – July 28 – August 25, online or at the CTC office.

Posted in Texas Campus News