Plum Creek Grant to Encourage Young Foresters

Coos Bay, OR – Even though the forest industry is a cornerstone of the economy of southern Oregon, students interested in becoming foresters have had to leave the area to find education and job training opportunities. In a unique partnership between the industry and Southwestern Oregon Community College (SWOCC), the College has started a two-year forestry degree program to meet the workforce needs.
Plum Creek Foundation has announced the award of a $10,000 grant to Southwest Oregon Community Foundation Inc. to support the two-year start-up phase and hiring of full-time faculty.
“Plum Creek’s donation gets us closer to our goal of permanently establishing an associate degree program in forestry,” said Dr. Ross Tomlin, Vice President of Instruction & Student Services at Southwestern. “A student who completes this degree will be eligible for certain forestry jobs and can transfer as a junior to Oregon State University’s (OSU) bachelor of science forestry degree program.”
Following a national search, Southwestern hired full-time professor Dr. Gail Simonds. The program opened with 25 students this fall, exceeding the start-up goal of 20. The first class of students to graduate will enter the workforce in 2016 or transfer to OSU directly into the professional forestry program.
The purpose of the Southwestern Foundation is to support the college’s mission to improve people’s lives – socially, culturally and educationally – through friend-raising and fundraising. Southwestern’s mission is to support student achievement by providing access to lifelong learning and community engagement in a sustainable manner.
The mission of the Plum Creek Foundation is to provide philanthropic contributions to support and improve the general welfare of life in the communities that Plum Creek serves. The Foundation board meets quarterly to review applications submitted from organizations in the company’s operating communities. Visit the Community Involvement page on Plum Creek’s website at to download an application.

Small Businesses Focus on Prosperity

Coos Bay, OR – Southwestern Oregon Community College’s Small Business Development Center (Southwestern SBDC) is offering a program for current business owners/managers that focuses on business success through learning "Skills To Prosper".   
Business owners learn how to increase their efficiency and profits, enhance their marketing efforts to gain and retain customers, improve their record keeping and financial management systems, and deal with employee and personnel issues.  Session one will cover strategic planning.  Session two is all about managing business growth.  Session three will introduce the concept of successful negotiations.  Each of the 10 sessions covers a different business topic, a chance for business owners to share concerns and solutions, a review of current books and a guest speaker to provide insights into business concepts.  All paid participants will receive the books: Getting to Yes, The E-Myth Revisited, Good to Great and Growing a Business.
The Skills to Prosper Program’s unique format includes 10 group training sessions featuring business experts, supplemented by individual business advising and group networking.  Business owners have the opportunity to share perspectives on business development that enhance their business savvy and improve their operations.
The program begins Wednesday, January 14, 2015 at The Business Center, 2455 Maple Leaf, North Bend.  Group sessions are held once a month from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.  This program costs $600 for the year.  Payment plans are available on request.  Chamber of commerce members and tribal businesses that register and pay by January 10, 2015 will pay only $400.
Trainers include subject matter experts, business owners and Small Business Development Center advisors.  Enrollment is limited and those interested should contact the SBDC at 541-756-6866 or for additional information.

Traffic Control Flagger Training

Coos Bay, OR – Southwestern Oregon Community College’s Community Education Department is offering a one day, Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) approved, safety training course covering the requirements for flaggers and approved techniques for moving traffic cautiously and consistently through work zones. Students who successfully complete the course receive an ODOT credential for flaggers, valid for three years. You must be 18 years of age or older to receive certification. Class fees cover all materials. Please bring snacks to eat during breaks if needed, as there is no lunch break provided during this training. Pre-registration and payment is required. Location: Sitkum Hall, Room 1                                                                                     
Cost: $95 each class
Dates: December 6, 2014                                                                                   
Time: 8:30am to 2:30pm
For more information please call Community Education at 541-888-7328.



Coos Bay, OR – Southwestern Oregon Community College's geology lecture series continues on Friday, November 14, 2014 at 7:00 pm with “Shoreline Erosion and Flood Hazards on the Oregon Coast Due to Earth’s Changing Climate” by Dr. Jonathan Allan (Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries-DOGAMI).  This free lecture is at the Hales Center for the Performing Arts on the SWOCC campus and is open to all members of the community.  Dr. Allan earned his BS, MS & PhD degrees from University of Canterbury, New Zealand.  He completed a postdoctoral fellowship in the College of Oceanic & Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University where he worked with Paul Komar.  He is currently employed as a coastal geomorphologist in the Newport field office of the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI).  He has presented at a number of international meetings with a focus on coastal issues and has been published in a variety of scientific journals including Shore and Beach, Journal of Coastal Research, Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, Eos: Transactions of the American Geophysical Union and DOGAMI publications.  Several local groups including Washed Ashore, Surfriders, South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, Coos Watershed and Oregon Shores/Coast Watch will be in the lobby starting at 6:00 pm and after the talk.
All of the talks in the series are free and start at 7:00 pm in the Hales Center for the Performing Arts on the SWOCC Campus in Coos Bay. For those not able to attend in person, all lectures are Livestreamed and archived, with access from the college website.  Continuing sponsors of the lecture series include Oregon Resources Corporation, the SWOCC Foundation and the College.  Additional talks scheduled in the series this year include: Dr. Patrick Fulton (UC Santa Cruz) on January 17, 2015 (special time: 2:00 pm) with the 10th annual Cascadia Anniversary earthquake talk; Dave Jewitt (UCLA) on March 7, 2015 with “Death from Space”; Dr. Joel Pederson (Utah State University) on Saturday, April 18, 2015 on "New Approaches for Dating Rock Art, Addressing a Hot Archaeological Debate with Cool Geology" and Dr. David Montgomery (UW) on May 16, 2015 with “The Rocks Don’t Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah’s Flood”.  For additional information contact Ron Metzger at 541-888-7216.