College of So. Md. News Briefs - Southern Maryland Headline News

College of So. Md. News Briefs

CSM Closes for Winter Break 3 p.m., Dec. 22, Reopens Jan. 5

The College of Southern Maryland will close for its winter break at 3 p.m., Monday, Dec. 22. The college will resume operations at 8 a.m., Monday, Jan. 5.

CSM’s January term begins Jan. 6 and concludes on Jan. 15. Continuing Education classes begin Jan. 5 for the winter 2015 term.

Over the winter break, registration and access to all online services is available at through my.CSMD services. The following offices will check email during the break: Admissions at, Bursar's Office at, Financial Assistance at, Registrar at and Veterans Benefits at

The college will be closed in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Jan. 19 and classes for Spring Semester term and for Spring Mini I will begin on Jan. 20.

Textbook Discount Day will be on Jan. 14, at all campus’s College Stores and online at

A complete schedule of important dates is available at

CSM To Host Summer Camp Hiring Event Jan. 10

College Students Encouraged to Line-up Summer Employment

The College of Southern Maryland is hosting a hiring event on Jan. 10 at the Center for Business and Industry (BI) Building on the La Plata Campus for instructors to work summer Kids’ and Teen College programs.

Instructors are needed to develop and teach courses in arts and crafts, music and theater, engineering and math, reading and foreign languages, health and medical, information technology and science, personal development, and photography and writing. Kids' and Teen College programs are grouped by children aged 5-6, 7-10, 11-14 or 15 -17.

“CSM believes in nurturing children's potential year round,” said Personal Enrichment Youth Course Manager Jenn Hamilton. “Kids’ and Teen College at CSM is an excellent choice for children from 5 to 17 to explore their interests on a college campus while discovering themselves.”

The hiring event is free and open to the public. Job seekers are asked to apply prior to attending the hiring event at and register at Applicants should bring a resume and a portfolio to demonstrate prior instruction or relevant projects. Snow date for the event is Jan. 17.

“Adults can design their work as an instructor to fit their summer schedules--classes are mix-and-match, allowing people to work mornings or afternoons for one, two or more weeks,” said Hamilton.

For information visit, email or call 301-934-7645.

CSM Hosts Piscataway Indian Celebration

Members of the Piscataway Indian Conoy Tribe performed tribal music at the Piscataway Connections opening ceremony hosted by the College of Southern Maryland Diversity Institute Nov. 10 on the college’s La Plata Campus. The event celebrated nationally recognized Native American Heritage Month and honored Maryland’s only recognized tribe and descendants of the state’s original inhabitants. Southern Maryland has been home to Native Americans for more than 400 generations, and to this day is considered the cherished homeland of the Piscataway Conoy people.

For a gallery of photos from this event, visit To view a video of the opening ceremony, visit

CSM Hosts ‘Cool Careers in Cybersecurity for Girls’

Area Middle School Students Become Cyber Super-Investigators to Explore Careers

The College of Southern Maryland hosted 150 area middle school students Dec. 3 for the “Cool Careers in Cybersecurity for Girls Workshop” led by the National CyberWatch Center K-12 Division’s Educational Technology Policy, Research and Outreach program (ETPRO). The goal of the workshop was to introduce female students to the academic and career opportunities available in the cybersecurity field. With a scenario described by ETPRO Executive Director Dr. Davina Pruitt-Mentle and with guidance through problem-solving exercises from cybersecurity professionals from organizations in the D.C. Metro Region, the students learned about the challenging investigative work that is part of this field. CSM Vice President of Academic Affairs Robert Farinelli told the middle schoolers, “All the doors are open for you as you graduate high school when you take as many math and science classes as you can. Don’t let people talk you out of taking math because it is too hard. The ‘hard’ is what is good.” He also invited the students to CSM’s annual Women + Math conference for students ages 13 and older on April 18, 2015.

For photos from the workshop, visit For information on Women + Math, visit

College Photographer Val Nyce Pays It Forward

Scholarship Supports Students Who Overcome Challenges

For 17 years, Valerie Nyce has been on the edge of College of Southern Maryland events, quietly capturing history from behind her camera in her role as the college’s lead photography coordinator. Now, Nyce is securing a spot in CSM’s future by creating both a scholarship and an endowment to provide CSM students with the funds they need to attend the college.

“This is my way of giving back to the community, and I wanted to be sure it was something that would help the community as a whole,” Nyce said.

While getting to know students each semester at CSM, Nyce said she has learned it is often difficult for them to pay for the education they need to reach their potential in life and she wanted to help them in a way that would last beyond her tenure at CSM.

The Nyce Annual Scholarship provides either $1,600 for an entire year or $800 for a semester at the college to a recipient who is a resident of Calvert, Charles or St. Mary’s County, has a high school diploma or equivalent, is a CSM student and has at least a 2.5 grade point average. The funds can be used for tuition, fees, books and other supplies that might be needed for CSM courses.

“Val has been creating the image of CSM for 17 years through her unsurpassed talents. She is someone everyone loves and appreciates,” said CSM’s Vice President of Advancement Michelle Goodwin. “We are grateful for her unrelenting commitment and support of CSM and our community.”

The first recipient of the scholarship was Diane Payne of Waldorf for the Fall 2014 semester. An arts and sciences major with hopes of becoming a photographer, Payne said, “It’s my honor (to be) a recipient of the Nyce Annual Scholarship. The financial assistance will be of great help to me in paying my educational expenses, and it will allow me to graduate next spring.”

While attending CSM, Payne has worked as a student media assistant and benefited from Nyce’s guidance. “She has been a mentor to me by helping me strengthen my talents as a photographer. I truly feel I have found my purpose in life,” Payne said. “In everything that she has taught me, I will take that knowledge with me, and continue to capture many memories.”

Nyce purposely kept the criteria for the scholarship broad to give Southern Maryland residents a chance to earn it. Applicants must submit an essay of at least 200 words that describes their academic goals and how they have overcome a challenge. Nyce said that while the criteria are broad, she is looking for someone who is focused on education and will see his or her classes through to the end, even when the journey may be difficult. Each year’s recipient will be chosen by the CSM Foundation.

“In a way, this endowment is meant to honor my dad,” Nyce said. “He valued education and instilled those values in me.”

Scholarships and endowments at CSM Foundation are sponsored by private organizations, businesses and individuals.

Providing financial assistance is an important way for donors to work with the college to develop the area’s next generation of community leaders, nurses, engineers, truck drivers and members of the community to enhance their skills. Many scholarships are available on an on-going basis, however some change each semester or year.

For information on scholarships available through the CSM Foundation or to create an endowment to support CSM students, visit

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