NCTN National College Transition Network spacer
spacerAbout Usmembership Usservices Uspromisingpractices Uspublications Usconferences Usresources Us

Fall 2012 Webinar Series:
College Readiness for English Language Learners

These webinars have already taken place, please contact Ben Bruno to gain paid access to the archived recordings.


Webinar #1: ESOL Transitions Framework (Archived)

Presenters: Luanne Teller (SABES, World Education Inc.), and Kermit Dunkelberg.

Description: The Life Skills, College, and Career Readiness Guide for ESOL Learners (The Guide) is the final product of a two-year collaborative project among The Center for Adult English Language Acquisition (CAELA) at the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL), the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, Adult and Community Learning Services (ACLS), the System for Adult Basic Education Support (SABES), and MA ESOL practitioners.

This new resource is a collection of tasks that teachers can use in their classrooms to build the skills that students need to succeed in next steps.  The Life Skills, College, and Career Readiness Guide for ESOL Learners provides dozens of suggested activities at all three NRS class levels, but it can easily be adapted in ABE classrooms as well.  The tasks were created to alleviate the burden on teachers to translate the myriad lists of college and career readiness skills into classroom activities.  Instead teachers, program directors, and even students can identify tasks that they find useful--or adapt them for their use.  A good deal of the time in this session will be devoted to hands-on exploration of The Guide itself and ways that participants might use it.

Luanne Teller currently works as the Director of the System for Adult Basic Education Support (SABES) Central Resource Center (CRC) at World Education.  She has created and served as the director of three adult education programs, including a job skills training and job placement program, an ESOL program, and a transitions to college program.  In all of these programs, she has helped adult learners develop the skills to successfully transition to careers and to post-secondary education.  In addition to creating effective structures that generate strong performance outcomes; her work has included curriculum development, teaching, advising, and developing partnerships with employers and community organizations.

Kermit Dunkelberg is the newly-appointed Director of Adult Basic Education and ESOL for Holyoke Community Colleges. For eight years, Dr. Dunkelberg has served as the Program Coordinator of HCC's Ludlow Area Adult Learning Center, which serves 120 ESOL adult immigrants and refugees yearly. He is a co-founder of  the ABE to College Smooth Transitions Working Group, a forum which brings together practitioners from Western Massachusetts ABE and workforce development programs with faculty and staff from five area community colleges, to develop strategies to "smooth" the transition to college process for adult learners.


Webinar #2: Academic Vocabulary Development (Archived)

Presenters: Rebeca Fernandez, Davidson College, NC

Description: In this interactive 90-minute session, participants will compare their own ideas about vocabulary knowledge and its development in adult ESOL students against current definitions and understandings in the field. After a brief examination of the research, they will be introduced to a variety of instructional strategies and digital tools that can be used to support students’ academic vocabulary development in intermediate and advanced adult ESOL courses that aim to provide them with an adequate foundation for postsecondary coursework and career training. Time will be set aside for experimentation with and discussion of these strategies and tools.

Bio: Rebeca Fernandez is Coordinator of ESL and Multilingual Writing and Assistant Professor at Davidson College. In her previous position at Central Piedmont Community College, she provided adult ESL online professional development and worked on several content-based and contextualized curriculum projects, including face-to-face and blended courses in US history, healthcare occupations, and academic reading and writing.  Rebeca has presented at national conferences on the topic of English language learner transitions and co-authored, "Creating a Technical Careers Program through Community Partnerships" (In Authenticity in the Language Classroom and Beyond: Adult Learners). She has a B.S. in Bilingual Education from Boston University, a TESOL certificate from UCLA, and an Ed. M. and Ed.D. with a focus on language and literacy from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.


Webinar #3: Program Design and Implementation: Focus on El Paso's experience (Archived)

Presenters: Susan Tollefson, Norma Minjares, and Marta Edwards, El Paso Community College

This interactive 90-minute webinar will begin with a brief history of El Paso's transition program ("College & Career Readiness Model") and what it looks like today.  With input from participants, the presenters will identify and discuss some of the strengths and challenges similar to both native and non-native speakers of English preparing to transition to a U.S. postsecondary institution, as well as the strengths and challenges unique to ESOL adults. The main focus of the webinar will be to discuss how to meet the inherent challenges of building an instructional team that is strong in content and methodology, and whose members are willing to learn new skill sets necessary in an integrated, team-teaching model that builds student self-efficacy skills. The presenters will share tools and resources to aid in the process of preparing both instructors and students for postsecondary transition. Participants will be invited to give feedback on the elements that might be of benefit to their current transition program or in designing a new program. Finally, presenters will briefly share the transition program's impact on students and instructors, growing/changing needs, and next steps.

Norma Minjares has been a faculty member of El Paso Community College (EPCC) Workplace Literacy-Transitions Program team since 2010.  Her focused content area is math.  As a team member, she is involved in program planning, student advising, and facilitating the Career & College Exploration workshops.  From 2000-2010, she taught all levels of developmental math at EPCC.  Norma has a B.S. in Microbiology/Chemistry from the University of Texas at El Paso, a M.S. in Secondary Education from the University of Texas at El Paso, and an M.B.A. from the University of Chihuahua in Juarez, Mexico.

Susan Tollefson is a founding member of the EPCC Workplace Literacy Transitions Program (2007). She is the faculty member responsible for coordinating program planning, outreach, and faculty development. Her focused content area is writing/reading. Susan joined the EPCC Literacy Programs team in 2004 as an ESL instructor in the public housing complexes throughout El Paso. From 1993-2003 she worked internationally (Thailand and Mexico) in community based adult education programs. Her teaching experience in the U.S. includes educational support programs for adults with disabilities in an occupational setting and middle school language arts. Susan has a B.S. in English Education from Mankato State University, Mankato, Minnesota.

bottom of text