Sep 11

President Bush Delights Sold-Out Audience, New Scholarship in Name

A camera vantage point looking onto the first floor of the Presidential Scholarship Luncheon on Sept. 11. Photo by Bronson Peshlakai

Less Formal Affair for Keynote Speaker at Big Production Luncheon

By Bronson Peshlakai
Metro Campus Editor-in-Chief

CLEVELAND –- Poignant moments from his presidency mixed with classic self-disparaging anecdotes President George W. Bush, 68, delighted an audience of about 1,200 at the Tri-C Foundation Presidential Scholarship Luncheon held at the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel Sept. 11.

In the first time in at least three years of speakers at the luncheon, the keynote speaker immediately took a seat after introductions in an easy chair next to Tri-C President Alex Johnson for a Q&A session at the sold out, $1,000+ plate dinner – which school officials said raised more than $1.6 million this year.

The tone of the event seemed to almost set itself when the president congratulated Mayor Frank Jackson in the audience and the need to have the potholes of Cleveland filled.

The mood became solemn when a moment of silence was offered in remembrance of the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

After talking about the 9/11 events, Johnson asked the president about his views on the Middle Eastern situation with ISIL and Syrian conflicts.

“Without U.S. leadership they thrive,” Bush said. “Enemies become allies.

“Eventually freedom will prevail … Study Mandela if you want to lead a nation.”

Bush said he learned diplomacy from a master, his father George H.W. Bush.

“To conduct foreign policy it is very important to understand how a person thinks,” Bush said.

He acknowledged that immigration reform in America needs to happen. Enforcing the nation’s border is a huge fix, as well as changing small business laws that would allow temporary immigrants with a tamper-proof card to work in the U.S. to do jobs the Americans don’t want to do. It’s a change he believes will become law in the future.

“The challenge is for people that are here, and it is important to understand that people want to come to America to better their lives,” Bush said.

After Bush’s speech, Johnson said a new scholarship will be available to students, the “President George W. Bush Scholarship Fund.”

Members of the audience were given a complimentary copy of Bush’s #1 national bestseller “Decision Points.”

Although there were no metal detectors visible, attendees were required to show a numbered ticket with his or her name printed on it along with identification to enter the event.

Security and Secret Service were present and the audience were reminded several times that personal recordings on cell phones, including audio and video, were strictly not allowed.

The Presidential Scholarship Foundation has brought big name speakers in the past. The last three were President Bill Clinton, U.S. Sec’y of State Madeleine Albright, and U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Entertainers and news anchors such as Opray Winfrey, Cokie Roberts, Tom Brokaw and the late Tim Russert have also been keynote speakers for the luncheon.

Students interested in applying for Foundation Scholarships can do so by visiting

For more on Bush’s remarks on what happened behind-the-scenes as he learned about the unfolding events on 9/11, please read Brian Fuchik’s story at

Amandya Wells and Brian Fuchik also contributed to this report.

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Sep 11

President Bush Speaks About 9/11 in Cleveland 13 years later

Former U.S. President Bush and Tri-C President Alex Johnson interact in an informal dialogue about 9/11. Bush was the featured speaker at this year's Presidential Scholarship Luncheon held Sept. 11 at the Cleveland Renaissance Hotel.

Bush Recounts Details of Learning About Hijackings

By Brian Fuchik
Metro Staff Reporter

CLEVELAND — The horrific memory of September 11th 2001, is still fresh in the minds of Americans — especially in President George Bush’s mind as he recounted those personal moments at a Tri-C scholarship fundraiser.

After a moment of silence for the families and friends of the 9/11 hijacks, Bush told his version as president to more than 1,200 attendees at the 2014 Presidential Scholarship Luncheon in Cleveland on Sept. 11.

Bush said that when he was informed of the first plane crashing into the World Trade Center, he thought it was an aviation error. But, when the second plane hit he knew something was wrong.

Bush stayed in the classroom because he said he felt that he had to protect the little girl who was reading “The Pet Goat” to him at a Sarasota, Fla. School. He said it was that little girl, her community, and her nation that helped him remain calm and collected.

Upon leaving the classroom and after actually seen footage of the attack, he made the statement “I was hot. Who in the hell did it?”

When the third plane hit The Pentagon, Bush said that was a declaration of war.

“I became something I didn’t want to become, a war-time president,” Bush said.

Bush said he had to make a lot of tough decisions during this time, some which the public didn’t agree with.

But in the end, he was protecting all of us, he said.

Bush received a standing ovation after recounting the events in a question-and-answer session on stage with Tri-C President Alex Johnson.

Stay with The Voice for team coverage of President Bush’s visit to help fundraise money for student scholarships and veterens’ initiative especially at Tri-C.

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Sep 08

Welcome Back To School

Welcome back to school at Tri-C!

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Aug 15

Former Aramark Manager Charged with $38,000 Theft

By Marcia Leftridge and Bronson Peshlakai
Eastern Campus Editor, Metro Campus Editor

aramarkA former Aramark cafeteria manager is accused of stealing more than $38,000 from the proceeds of the Tri-C Eastern Campus cafeteria.

On July 22, a police investigative report was entered into the Cuyahoga County Prosecutors Criminal justice system for the county prosecutor to review the charges, and on Aug. 4, Antonio D. Ezell, 39, is under one count of grand theft, and is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 25 in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court.

In a statement filed by Tri-C Campus Police, Ezell, confessed to the theft.

“I took money from the safe on numerous occasions to gamble with; I always thought I would win enough to replace the money I took.”

Since February 2014, Ezell started making fictitious coin orders from money supplier Dunbar, and was failing to make bank deposits from the cash sales at the cafeteria, the report said.

In a statement from Jerry Davenport, and Aramark cash audit supervisor, she arrived at the Eastern Campus to explore why a cash variance was showing between bank statements and sales transaction. After auditing the safe, she approached Ezell asking where a missing deposit was, and an explanation on why a sticky note in the safe said $600 on loan to “student union.”

Ezell tried to act confused as to where the missing deposit was, and no one could be located to account for the loan to “student union.”

After being confronted, Ezell said he had a “bad habit,” and he didn’t know how to fix it. He turned in his keys and left the premises, according to the report.

“Davenport then conducted an in-depth audit which revealed $16.857.28 in missing cash deposits, along with $20,802.00 in missing change orders, and $590.34 missing from the safe, bring the total theft amount to $38,249.63,” the report said.

Aramark food director Kevin Strub said that in the 25 years he’s been with the company he had never experienced an incident of this magnitude at Tri-C.

“I was dumbfounded,” Strub said. 
“Anywhere I’ve been I’ve never had to deal with something like this.”

Strub said Aramark employees have to submit to background checks, Ezell did, and he had worked his way up in the company to a management position.

The Voice tried to contact Ezell, but his phone number listed on the report was disconnected.

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Aug 14

Former College Employee Charged with Computer Thefts

A former Tri-C employee accused of stealing $50,000 worth of computer equipment from the college has been charged with felony theft.

Gregory Wallace, 41, was charged in Parma Municipal Court according to his case filing Aug. 13. The filing lists the offense date from April 8, 2014.

Wallace’s LinkedIn page said he worked in the college’s IT department as a desktop support supervisor.

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Aug 12

Behind the Headlines: The Heroin Epidemic

Thursday, October 23 12:00pm

Part of a series of programs designed to provide an in-depth exploration of newsworthy topics from a variety of perspectives.

heroinThe Heroin Epidemic program will examine the increasing rates of heroin addiction and heroin related deaths in our community and the Community Action Plan developed to find solutions to the epidemic. Panelists will discuss the role of healthcare professionals, social service provders, the criminal justice system, and the media in raising awareness and Sponsored by Cuyahoga Community College Departments of Student Life and Journalism and Mass Communication, The Press Club of Cleveland, and The Voice, Tri-C’s Student Newspaper.combating the crisis. Panelists will include representatives from the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Drug Court, the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board of Cuyahoga County, The MetroHealth System, and the local newspaper and television reporters.

For more information call 216-987-3092 or email
Don’t worry, you don’t need to create a Cuyahoga Community College account to respond.

You can accept of turn down this invitation by clicking the link below:

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Aug 06

UPDATE: Nursing Program Granted Full Accreditation

Nursing students at the Tri-C Metro Campus work as a group to check the vital signs given on a human-like "dummy" during the spring 2014 semester. (File photo by Aswan Harris)

Nursing students at the Tri-C Metro Campus work as a group to check the vital signs given on a human-like “dummy” during the spring 2014 semester. (File photo by Aswan Harris)

Program Approval Ends Year-long Stymie on Future of Nursing at Tri-C

By Bronson Peshlakai
Voice News Metro Campus

The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing has given its full approval of the college’s nursing program, ending an inquiry into several deficiencies which the college has rectified earlier in the year.

“I am extremely proud of the incredible teamwork exhibited by the nursing faculty and staff in preparation of the self-study and subsequent site visit which led to this outcome,” Tri-C District President Alex Johnson said in an e-mail.

File photo by Aswan Harris.

File photo by Aswan Harris.

The news of the commission’s decision to deem the program “fully accredited without condition” is a formality as both site visitors from the commission and college administrators expressed a positive outcome after ACEN visited Tri-C in March.

This green light for the nursing program means approval was made from site visitor recommendations to an ACEN evaluation review panel, who submitted its decision to the ACEN board of commissioners, the final vote clearing Tri-C’s nursing program until 2022.

Among some of the deficiencies that prompted the ACEN action to place the program in a conditional status was that the college failed to meet a threshold of having enough nursing instructors on faculty who possessed a master’s degree or higher.

As the college prepared for the site visit Tri-C officials said they had exceeded the minimum requirements of the number of instructors with master’s degrees, and were very confident of having the “conditional” accreditation changed to a full accreditation with no conditions for eight years, the maximum length of time before another accreditation review.

According to the commission’s website, “accreditation is a voluntary, self-regulatory process by which non-governmental associations recognize educational institutions or programs that have been found to meet or exceed standards and criteria for educational quality.”

Many health care institutions like Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals and MetroHealth Medical Center rely on its incoming nursing workforce to have graduated from schools that are fully accredited.

With the accreditation issue set until 2022, nursing administrators now have a chance to look forward to the future of the program.

“We started on this one or two years ago which was sidelined with the issues to be taking care of with ACEN. A curriculum revision is probably the next biggest step for us; that an maintaining the integrity of the program, and making sure that the students get the best nursing education possible,” said Vivian Yates, Tri-C’s dean of nursing.

“We will continue to work with employers to ensure that our program remains among the top in the nation, preparing our graduates for productive careers,” Johnson said.

Tri-C offers a two-year associate of applied science degree in nursing and a one-year practical nursing certification. In 2013 Tri-C conferred more than 500 associate degrees in nursing to rank among the top schools in the nation, a release said.

Another highlight of the program is that approximately 85 percent of Tri-C graduates passed the national licensing exam in 2013, a success rate that exceeds state and national averages.

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May 06

The Voice Notified of Five Wins in Excellence in Journalism

By staff reports

The Voice and The Voice News, the newspaper’s broadcast video counterpart, was notified by the Press Club of Cleveland that it is the winner of five Excellence in Journalism Awards this year.

The Press Club recognizes the state’s top performers in various realms in journalism. Awards are considered for magazines, local and regional newspapers, and college publications for two- and four-year schools.

This notification does not indicate if the award is 1st, 2nd, or honorable mention. That information will be given at an awards dinner taking place June 6 at The House of Blues in Cleveland.

The awards announced are in the following format: Story title, Reporter, Category. (Feel free to click LINK to story)

New President Returns to Old Stomping Grounds
By Bronson Peshlakai, Metro Editor-in-Chief
Best Print Newspaper Story, 2-Year School

Free Transit for Students
By Bronson Peshlakai, Metro Editor-in-Chief
Best Print Newspaper Story, 2-Year School

Soccer and Education Go Hand-in-Hand for Soccer Star
By Robert Fenbers, Western Sports Reporter
Best Print Sports Story, 2-Year School

Tri-C Men’s and Women’s Basketball Teams Lose by Combined 81 Points in Toledo; Lady Player Injured
By Bronson Peshlakai, Metro Associate Editor
Best Print Sports Story, 2-Year School

Tri-C President Alex Johnson Sworn In
By Bronson Peshlakai, Metro Editor-in-Chief
Best TV News Story, 2-Year School

Last year, The Voice won three awards from The Press Club of Cleveland.

The Voice is the independent student publication for Cuyahoga Community College, located in Cleveland, Ohio. The newspaper distributes its print edition to four Tri-C campuses. Tri-C enrolls more than 50,000 students each year.

Bronson Peshlakai

Bronson Peshlakai

Bronson Peshlakai has served as a staff reporter, associate editor and editor-in-chief at The Voice since he started Tri-C Metro Campus in 2011. He has created and developed the CCCVOICE.COM online platform, and The Voice News, a broadcast video platform utilizing stories from the print version. Peshlakai graduates Tri-C this spring with an associates of arts with an emphasis in business. His future plans are to continue to take a small contingency of classes in the fall at Tri-C, and at Cleveland State University where he will pursue a degree in business, and public relations.


Robert Fenbers

Robert Fenbers

Robert Fenbers is a Western Campus staff reporter and sports reporter. His stories have covered baseball, soccer and other related sports stories at Tri-C. He plans on majoring in broadcast journalism and plans to transfer to Cleveland State University next year. Fenbers has worked on several podcasts, print stories and broadcast sports stories with The Voice

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May 01

A Lookback at The Voice News Coverage of 2014

It’s that time of year again as students are stressed with year-end projects, term papers and finals. The Voice has its final newspaper hitting the stands on Friday.

This video was presented at an event showcasing students’ projects at the Tri-C Metro Campus. It showcases some of the stories The Voice News covered in the last 2 years. It ends with a nice blooper reel. Enjoy.

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Apr 24

Terri Pope Named President of Westshore Campus

Terri Pope, Tri-C Westshore Campus president

Terri Pope, Tri-C Westshore Campus president

From staff reports

Cuyahoga Community College  announced that Dr. Terri Pope has been named president of Westshore Campus in Westlake.

Pope had served as interim president of that campus since October. She replaced J. Michael Thomson, who is now president of Tri-C’s Eastern Campus in Highland Hills.

“It is a privilege to serve the same college I attended as a student,” Pope said. “Our new Westshore Campus is a vibrant and innovative place. I am working  with a team dedicated to student success and I am very honored to serve as campus president.”

Pope joined Tri-C as an adjunct biology instructor in 1988 before becoming a full-time instructor in 1991 and a tenured professor in 1997. She served in faculty leadership for many years, most recently as chair of Westshore’s faculty senate.

In 2012, Pope received Tri-C’s Ralph M. Besse Award for Teaching Excellence for her commitment to academic achievement. She’s known for utilizing an inventive teaching style that brings the curriculum to life for her students.

“Dr. Pope’s longstanding commitment to student success, both in and out of the classroom, will be invaluable to the continued growth and development of Westshore Campus,” Tri-C President Alex Johnson said. The campus at 31001 Clemens Road opened in 2011.

Pope holds a doctorate from The Ohio State University and a bachelor’s degree from Case Western Reserve University. Pope attended Tri-C for the first two years of her undergraduate studies.

She is well published and highly regarded in her field. Prior to her arrival at Tri-C, Pope was a consulting nutritionist.

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