News Releases

Nearly $180,000 in Ohio Safety Support to Secure Owens Campuses

Posted on December 1st, 2022

Safety and security funding provided by the State of Ohio will help Owens Community College secure buildings on both of its campus locations as an added benefit to students and staff.

Governor Mike DeWine allocated $5 million to 33 colleges and universities in Ohio, including $177,583 to Owens to update door security on all remaining buildings at the Findlay-area Campus and up to seven buildings on the Toledo-area Campus.

The buildings will be secured with card-reader systems managed by the Owens Department of Public Safety (DPS). In the event of a threat, officers will be able to immediately secure buildings from a centralized location.

“All colleges are looking to make their campuses safer and more secure,” said Steve Harrison, Owens Chief of Police and Director of DPS. “We’re grateful to Governor DeWine’s office for providing these funds that allow us to continue modernizing our campus locations. This is positive step for Owens Community College and colleges across the State of Ohio.”

The grant awards are part of the 2022 Campus Safety Grant Program, which was funded with support from the Ohio legislature in Senate Bill 310 of the 133rd General Assembly. The Ohio School Safety Center, which is a division of the Ohio Department of Public Safety, reviewed the campus safety grant applications in consultation with the Ohio Department of Higher Education.

To be eligible for grant funding, colleges and universities conducted a security and vulnerability assessment to identify areas in need of safety enhancements.

ServSafe Food Manager Training at Owens Community College

Posted on December 1st, 2022

Owens Community College continues to address local employment needs, now offering non-credit ServSafe Food Protection Manager Certification training to support the restaurant industry. In two days of training at the Dana Center on the Toledo-area Campus, the course covers critical principles including personal hygiene, cross contamination, time and temperature, receiving and storage, food safety management systems, training hourly employees and more.

In Ohio, there are more than 20,000 eating and drinking locations which employ more than 427,000 people, nearly 10% of employment statewide. According to the Ohio Department of Health, each risk level III and risk level IV food service operation and retail food establishment is required to have at least one employee with supervisory and management responsibility and the authority to direct and control food preparation and service that has obtained the Ohio Manager Certification in food protection

The ServSafe Food Protection Manager Certification is accredited by the American National Standards Institute – Conference for Food Protection. Each trainee will attend two days of training and take a certification exam at the end of the second day. A book and exam voucher are included in the course fee.

The two-day training sessions are available in December, February, April and June. To sign up for the training, visit and click Culinary.

Owens Big Read Project Culminates First Phase with Bookshelf, Books Donations

Posted on November 17th, 2022

Family House and Owens

Cherry Street Mission

Cherry Street Mission and Owens Community College

The Owens Community College Big Read project concluded the first phase of its community engagement initiative Tuesday, November 15 when the final two revitalized Owens-red bookshelves and books were donated to Cherry Street Mission Ministries and Family House in downtown Toledo.

The Big Read committee collected eight bookshelves and more than 600 books from staff, faculty and students during the pandemic. Volunteers revitalized the bookshelves and painted them Owens red. Previous donations were made to Afterschool All-Stars, an after-school program at Reynolds Elementary School, Lucas County Ohio Means Jobs, the Zepf Center and La Posada Family Shelter.

“Cherry Street and Owens Community College have a long history of caring for the educational desire of people in partnership with one another. It is a joy to be able to expand that partnership from the current workforce development certificates that we offer, to the reading program that is now part of our collaboration,” Ann Ebbert, CEO/President of Cherry Street Mission Ministries, said.

The final donations were made in November to coincide with National Family Literacy Month.

“Receiving a bookshelf and multiple boxes of books for all ages has been a big boost for us at La Posada,” said Willi R. Meyer, Activities and Wellness Manager. “These kids can’t just run to a friend’s house down the street to play so they rely on these books to really explore their imagination and this donation is extremely appreciated.”

The Big Read committee, led by Owens English professor Jen Hazel and librarian Jane Berger, is seeking additional books and bookshelf donations of any kind with a goal of launching the second phase of the project in the Findlay and greater Hancock County community in March 2023 during National Reading Month. Donated books also will be used to restock bookshelves in Toledo.

“The community engagement part of our Big Read project is immeasurable,” Hazel said. “We know that reading is a key component of education and professional development. It’s humbling that we are able to share the gift of reading with so many in our community. And we want to do more in 2023 and the years beyond.”

More information about the Big Read project is available at

$100,000 state grant to provide Owens with advanced manufacturing, robotics equipment

Posted on November 17th, 2022

The Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE) has awarded Owens Community College more than $100,000 for high-tech equipment to benefit students in the advanced manufacturing and robotics programs on the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses.

The state grant totals $101,012 and will be utilized to purchase three portable video-conference systems, a process control learning system and FANUC iRVision hardware and software.

Owens offers FANUC certification at the $10 million Dana Center for advanced manufacturing training on the Toledo-area Campus. Students in the Regional Advanced Manufacturing Partnership also learn robotics as part of their apprenticeship on the Findlay-area Campus.

“The local industry will benefit from the state-of-the-art equipment provided by the Ohio Department of Higher Education grant,” said Dr. Daniel Kelley, Owens Dean in the School of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. “Equipment will support experiential learning and hands-on experience to best prepare students to meet the needs of Industry 4.0 and the highly-technical advanced manufacturing jobs available today and in the future.

“The degree and certificate programs we offer provide students with broad education and hands-on experience required by industry for the 21st Century workplace,” he added.

Learn more about Owens Community College advanced manufacturing and robotics programs at

Owens Recognized for Student Voter Engagement

Posted on November 16th, 2022

Owens Community College has been awarded the ALL IN Most Engaged Campus Designation for its work in 2022 to increase student voter turnout, joining a select group of less than 400 colleges and universities nationally and one of 19 in Ohio to receive the inaugural honor.

The Center for Campus and Community Connections spearheaded efforts to increase student voter registration and turnout, working with offices across the Toledo-area Campus and the local community.

“Owens Community College students wanted to have their voice heard in their local and state elections,” said Krista Kiessling, Director of the Center for Campus and Community Connections.

The ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge is a nonpartisan, national initiative recognizing and supporting campuses as they work to increase nonpartisan democratic engagement and full student voter participation. Owens Community College previously received the Bronze Seal by the ALL IN Challenge for its student voting rate in the 2020 general election.

For National Voter Registration Day in September, the Center for Campus and Community Connections partnered with the League of Women Voters and Owens Student Ambassadors to set up tables around the Toledo-area Campus to provide students with an opportunity to sign up to vote.

Owens Supports Local Non-Profit

Posted on November 7th, 2022

In continuing to identify ways to serve the community as an indispensable partner, Owens Community College has supported local non-profit Sleep in Heavenly Peace – Oak Harbor. Sleep in Heavenly Peace is an organization that builds and delivers beds to children in need of a bed and a safe place to sleep.

The College sells surplus property including tables, chairs, shelves and more on  Recently, Sleep in Heavenly Peace bought furniture from the College’s former library. In addition, the College also donated shelving units to the non-profit. The furniture is now in the organization’s shop as it works to plan the next build day. “Our whole chapter is excited about this great deal and the huge asset it brings to our chapter,” said Jim Berlin, Jr., Sleep in Heavenly Peace Chapter President.

Public Invited to Veterans-themed Art Exhibit, Opening Reception

Posted on November 3rd, 2022

On Veterans Day eve, the public is invited to join us for the opening reception to celebrate the work of the Experiencing Veterans and Artists Collaborations’ printed artwork from stories from different war veterans.

When: 5 – 7 p.m. Thursday, November 10

Where: Walter E. Terhune Art Gallery

7270 Biniker Dr.

Perrysburg, OH

Description: Experiencing Veterans and Artists Collaborations (EVAC) is an art project that brings together veterans and artists. EVAC curators interviewed veterans about their experiences, and artists made an edition of prints based on their interpretation of those stories. The prints are exhibited with excerpts from the transcribed interviews.

EVAC works to bridge the often-precarious gap between military and civilian life.

This exhibit is a part of Owens Community College’s 2022-2023 BIG Read Program, the goal of which is to bring awareness of different perspectives through books and accompanying activities on campus and in our surrounding communities.

The exhibit is open until December 16.

More info:

UToledo, Owens Renew Rocket Express Admission Program

Posted on October 18th, 2022

The University of Toledo and Owens Community College renewed a partnership that creates a seamless pathway for students to earn a bachelor’s degree from UToledo after starting at Owens.

The admission pathway program, called Rocket Express, was first launched in 2017.

Owens President Dr. Dione D. Somerville and UToledo President Dr. Gregory Postel renewed the Rocket Express program during a signing ceremony Wednesday, October 19 in the Student Service Center in College Hall at Owens Community College. Owens Provost Dr. Denise Smith and UToledo Provost Dr. Risa Dickson also participated in the ceremony.

“We are pleased to continue our Rocket Express partnership with the University of Toledo.  Our Rocket Express agreement provides a pathway to an additional opportunity in higher education so that our students reach their academic and career goals efficiently. The Rocket Express helps provide support for our students who intend to transfer while saving them time and money. We are grateful to the University of Toledo for partnering with Owens in a way that is meaningful to our students and our region,” Somerville said.

“The strong partnership between UToledo and Owens and our shared commitment to student success provide a great opportunity for individuals in our community to achieve their dream of earning a college degree with increased support from both institutions through our updated Rocket Express program,” Postel said.

A total of 1,600 Owens students are enrolled in the Rocket Express program for Fall 2022 to begin the 2022-23 academic year. Over the first five academic years of the partnership, from 2017-18 through 2021-22, Owens averaged 1,750 students enrolled annually in the Rocket Express partnership. During this time, more than 6,500 students who previously attended Owens then enrolled at UToledo.

Students begin their college journey at Owens and can join the updated Rocket Express program immediately by indicating they intend to transfer to UToledo. Rocket Express students benefit from access to academic advisors at both Owens and UToledo and receive ongoing communication from UToledo as they advance through their academic studies. Program participants also have opportunities to participate in student life activities at both Owens and UToledo, such as clubs, organizations and Express and Rocket athletics games.

As part of the program, students have access to UToledo’s degree audit system to keep track of how their Owens classes will apply to their future UToledo degree program, which is a helpful tool especially if they are considering changing their program of study.

Rocket Express students also do not pay the UToledo application fee when they are ready to transfer.

UToledo and Owens announced the updated Rocket Express admission pathway program during National Student Transfer Week that celebrates transfer students and the professionals who support them.

More information on Rocket Express is available on the Owens website at

BGSU, University of Findlay and Owens Community College name executive director for Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics

Posted on October 13th, 2022

Bowling Green State University, the University of Findlay and Owens Community College have announced the appointment of an executive director for the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics. Tim Mayle, who currently serves as director of Findlay-Hancock County Economic Development, will assume the key leadership position in November, bringing more than 20 years of direct experience with economic development to the Center.

Mayle has been with Findlay-Hancock County Economic Development since 2011 and has led the division within the Findlay-Hancock County Alliance since 2016. In his new role, he will provide strategic direction for the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics, which will support the rapidly expanding workforce need for skilled professionals in the region and state.

“The Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics has incredible potential to shape our economy,” said Mayle. “I am grateful for the opportunity to continue to serve our region and state through economic and workforce development in this new capacity. Ohio continues to see unprecedented investment in the advanced manufacturing and logistics sectors, and I am excited to leverage the strengths of three higher education institutions through this Center to support our economy at such a significant moment.”

“Tim’s impressive success as the Director of Economic Development for the Findlay-Hancock County Alliance bodes well for the future of this game-changing initiative,” said University of Findlay President Katherine Fell. “President Somerville, President Rogers, and I are committed to doing our part to prepare the workforce needed for long-term manufacturing and logistics success in northwest Ohio and we are delighted to welcome Tim to our team.”

Last fall, BGSU, the University of Findlay and Owens Community College announced an innovative partnership among the three institutions, representing a public, a private and a community college, to create the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics.

The Center will facilitate the growth and sustainability of jobs and company creation in the advanced manufacturing and logistics sectors, providing opportunities for companies large and small to access training, talent and research and development opportunities.

In September, Intel broke ground in Licking County, Ohio, after announcing plans for an initial investment of more than $20 billion in the construction of two new leading-edge chip factories to boost production to meet demand for advanced semiconductors. This week, Honda confirmed it has selected Ohio to lead its electric vehicle (EV) production and announced, along with LG Energy Solution, a joint venture battery plant with a combined investment of at least $4.2 billion.

“Higher education plays a critical role in supporting the vitality of our economy and the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics comes at an essential time for Ohio,” said BGSU President Rodney K. Rogers. “Through this public university, private university, and public community college partnership, we will ensure our region’s institutions are working together to provide relevant academic programs, facilities and connections with businesses to prepare the trained professionals needed to support and sustain industry growth. We remain focused on meeting our students’ and society’s needs while ensuring Ohio continues to be a leader in advanced manufacturing and logistics.”

The Center will initially have three operating nodes located on the partnering colleges’ campuses, all along the I-75 corridor. Each institution will provide distinctive training opportunities, ranging from non-degree track certifications and badges to associate, bachelor’s and post-graduate degrees, to address workforce needs.

In addition, the Center will also provide applied research, prototyping and experiential learning opportunities to solve industry problems and provide hands-on learning experience for talent development.

As executive director, Mayle will work at the three partnering institutions’ campuses and will foster manufacturing and logistic industry jobs and company creation. He will also manage the Center’s external engagement to integrate the Center’s programs into the region’s ecosystem.

“I am thrilled to welcome Tim Mayle as the inaugural executive director of the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics,” said Owens Community College President Dr. Dione D. Somerville. “His experience in economic development and his long history in northwest Ohio make him the perfect candidate. Tim will bring an entrepreneurial spirit and the energy that we need to ensure the success of the Center. As a champion of education’s role in the prosperity of a community, Tim has been an invaluable partner. He understands how an alignment between workforce and higher education will help drive our region’s professional pipeline. The Center is poised to have an incredible impact, and we are excited to see Tim’s leadership continue to move us forward.”

Mayle was appointed by Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine to serve on the Transportation Review Advisory Council to the Ohio Department of Transportation. He also serves as president of the Ohio Economic Development Association Board of Directors and will continue his work on both statewide initiatives.

He holds a Bachelor of Science in Geographic Information Systems from Ohio University. Mayle is set to begin his role as executive director for the Center of Advanced Manufacturing and Logistics on Nov. 1.

Release courtesy BGSU Office of Marketing and Brand Strategy with collaboration from the Owens Community College and the University of Findlay strategic marketing and communications offices. 

Community Members, Prospective New Students Invited to Owens Community College Open House Monday, October 17

Posted on October 11th, 2022

Owens Community College invites community members and prospective new students to the annual Open House from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, October 17. Community members and prospective new students will have the opportunity to explore academic programs, transfer options and more.

“With more than 70 programs, Owens Community College is ready to show northwest Ohio all that it has to offer at both our Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses,” said Dave Shaffer, executive director of Owens student services. “We have a number of new programs that we are excited for the community to explore. Faculty and staff will be available to talk about all of our degree and transfer options and how Owens is the perfect college to begin building a better future.”

At Open House, prospective students will be able to complete the Admissions application, learn about tuition, financial aid and payment options as well as learn more about student life on the Toledo-area and Findlay-area campuses. “This really is an opportunity for prospective students and the community to see how Owens Community College fits into their lives now and creates a pathway for their future,” said Shaffer.

The Open House will be located in Veterans Hall 201 on the Toledo-area Campus and Education Center 111 on the Findlay-area Campus.

Campus tours are also available. More details are available at

Owens Community College STEM Job Fair

Posted on September 28th, 2022

When: 3:30 – 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, October 4

Where: Industrial & Engineering Technologies 109

7250 College Dr. East

Perrysburg, OH

What: Join us for a STEM job fair. Talk with employers in the following fields about their available job opportunities

  • Applied Engineering
  • Automotive
  • CAD
  • Computer Programming Technology
  • Environmental Science
  • Information Systems Technology
  • Welding

For more information, email or visit

This event is open to Owens students, alumni and the community and is hosted by Owens Career & Transfer Services and the School of STEM.

President Somerville Highlights College Achievements, Presents Top Teaching Award

Posted on August 22nd, 2022

Owens Community College State of the College Address

Dr. Dione D. Somerville began her second academic year as president on Monday, August 22 by highlighting Owens Community College’s achievements to faculty, staff and community guests, including Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner.

She also recognized this year’s Presidential Teaching Award recipient, nursing professor Julie Lohse, who also received the 2021 top teaching award in the college’s School of Nursing and Health Professions. Lohse is entering her 24th academic year teaching as Owens, having begun her career in Fall 1998. Other award finalists were Julie Chesser, professor, math; Cory Hoover, professor, English; and Kristin Price, professor, social and behavioral sciences.

Dr. Somerville highlighted enrollment, budget matters and partnerships, among other initiatives, as she spoke on the Findlay-area Campus in the morning and again on the Toledo-area Campus in the afternoon.

“My vision for Owens is our vision for Owens,” she said, referring to the college’s vision statement of being the area’s premier two-year college, a first choice for students seeking higher education and an indispensable partner for businesses, educational institutions and community organizations.

She shared about the implementation of the new Strategic Enrollment Management Plan and its importance considering the projected decline of high school graduates over the next decade. She said the balanced budget, adopted by the Board of Trustees, was built on areas of need with consideration for strategic initiatives, including the new Workday ERP software that will service the entire college.

Since taking over the Owens presidency in June 2021, Dr. Somerville has made it a priority to engage community leaders. More than two dozen community leaders attended Monday’s State of the College presentations.

Looking forward, she spoke about capital renovations and centralizing the college’s nursing and health profession programs on the east side of Oregon Road on the Toledo-area Campus. Construction on the former library building and Audio-Visual Classroom Center is anticipated to begin in 2023 with completion for Fall Semester 2024.

Also in 2023, the Findlay-area Campus will celebrate its 40th anniversary serving Findlay and the greater Hancock County area. Plans are underway to create a planning group for this milestone.

With the college’s current strategic plan expiring this year, Dr. Somerville said Owens plans to continue working with internal and external stakeholders on developing the new plan to ensure Owens maintains its position serving students and the region. She held several listening sessions on the subject, both on campus and in the community, during the past academic year.

Owens President Somerville Among 26 Selected for Aspen Institute’s National Fellowship

Posted on August 22nd, 2022

The Aspen Institute College Excellence Program (Aspen) has named Owens Community College President Dr. Dione D. Somerville among 26 leaders for its national New Presidents Fellowship Class of 2022-23. This program supports community college presidents in the early years of their tenure as they work to achieve higher and more equitable levels of student success.

“I am honored to be selected for the Aspen Fellowship,” said Dr. Somerville, who began as the eighth Owens president in June 2021. “The Aspen Institute is known for its exceptional work with community colleges at the national level. I look forward to working with the distinguished fellows in my class and identifying best practices that will help make a difference for Owens Community College and our students.”

This class of fellows represents the diversity of our nation’s community colleges, collectively serving more than 250,000 students at colleges across the nation, in urban, suburban and rural areas. The incoming class of New Presidents Fellows is 46 percent female and 65 percent are people of color. Located in 19 states, their institutions too are diverse, from a tribal college with fewer than 300 students to an urban college that educates more than 35,000 each year.

The fellows, selected through a competitive process, will work closely with other transformational community college presidents and Aspen leaders over nine months to learn from field-leading research, analyze their colleges’ student outcomes, and clarify their visions for excellent and equitable outcomes for students while in college and after they graduate.

“The quality of our nation’s community colleges depends on the quality of our college presidents,” said Josh Wyner, executive director of the College Excellence Program. “I am continually inspired and motivated by the dedication and expertise that our fellows bring to the work of advancing excellence and equity on their campuses, and I look forward to seeing the changes they make in real time to improve outcomes for their students.”

Prior to taking the presidency at Owens, Dr. Somerville held leadership positions at Hawkeye Community College, Bloomsburg University, Iowa State University and Lorain County Community College. She earned her doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania, her master’s degree from Bowling Green State University and her bachelor’s degree from Ohio Northern University. The Detroit native worked a graduate assistantship at the University of Findlay. Dr. Somerville participated in the Harvard University Institute for Education Management and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ Millennium Leadership Institute.

For bios and photos of all 26 leaders, visit

Owens Healthcare Students Gain Clinical Access, Including Supervised Direct Patient Care

Posted on August 15th, 2022

Owens Community College and Blanchard Valley Health System Expand Partnership

Owens Community College and Blanchard Valley Health System (BVHS) have signed a formal agreement that expands clinical site access for tomorrow’s healthcare workers studying at Owens, including nurses and allied health professionals.

The agreement calls for supervised access to direct patient care to provide clinical training and experience for Owens students enrolled primarily in the college’s School of Nursing and Health Professions, from the Findlay-area Campus on Bright Road and the Toledo-area Campus in Perrysburg.

Blanchard Valley Health System’s clinical sites include Blanchard Valley Hospital and Bluffton Hospital, among others. Clinical sites will accommodate a minimum of six and maximum of 10 clinical groups consisting of six to seven students per group during both the Spring and Fall semesters.

“We are very excited about this partnership with Owens Community College, as we work together to offer the opportunity for individuals in northwest Ohio to develop skills and become dedicated healthcare workers,” said Myron Lewis, president and chief executive officer of BVHS. “Collaborations such as these are extremely beneficial to the communities we serve, not only by creating jobs, but also by ensuring quality healthcare services for generations to come.”

“At Owens, we strive to provide our students with dynamic and interactive educational experiences,” said Dr. Dione D. Somerville, president of Owens Community College. “We value our partnership with Blanchard Valley Health System and the opportunities it provides our students and our communities. These kinds of partnerships ensure we educate healthcare workers and other graduates who are prepared and ready for their careers.”

Pre-nursing seats remain available for Fall Semester, which begins August 29. The need for registered nurses is expected to grow by 9 percent by 2030, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Owens students in Ultrasound Technology, MRI, Radiological Technology, Surgical Technology, Sterile Processing and Vascular Technology as well as students in Emergency Medical Services in the college’s Public Safety program also will work clinicals at BVHS.

“The increased clinical opportunities at Blanchard Valley Health System will expose our students to a real-world work environment and demonstrate what is expected following graduation as they begin their careers,” said Irene Jones, Owens nursing program chair. “We are very excited to have these clinical seats for our students.”

“Clinical positions are vitally important to the overall well-being of our public health environment,” said Barbara J. Pasztor, chief nursing officer and chief operating officer of acute care services at BVHS. “Through this partnership with Owens Community College, we are elated to be able to collaborate in order to advance the careers of future healthcare providers within our own region.”

For more information about Owens Community College nursing or healthcare programs, visit

Owens Community College Adjunct Faculty Recruitment Event

Posted on July 28th, 2022

When: 5-6 p.m. Thursday, August 4, 2022

Where: Online via Blackboard Collaborate.

What: Owens is seeking adjunct faculty in many academic disciplines, including nursing, skilled trades, humanities, social & behavior sciences and fine and performing arts and more! Anyone interested in learning more about working as an adjunct faculty member at Owens should attend.

Benefits: The benefits include …

  • Flexible teaching schedule
  • Potential to teach courses online
  • Earn additional income
  • Educate tomorrow’s employees

For more information, contact

Legal Assistant Technology Degree to begin in Fall 2022 at Owens Community College

Posted on July 19th, 2022

Students interested in studying law will be able to pursue the new Legal Assistant Technology degree at Owens Community College beginning Fall 2022.

Paralegals and legal assistants have a projected job growth of 12 percent through 2030, which is more than the average growth rate of 8 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. There are currently more than 345,000 jobs available with a median pay of $56,230. “These students are in demand, will be well paid and will serve a community need. Law firms and legal departments within large organizations would not be able to maintain efficiency without legal assistants,” said Libby King, Business Technologies Chair.

Legal Assistant Technology students will learn general office skills, data processing and have a basic understanding of legal requirements of businesses, litigation, contract and legal research. Throughout the program, students can expect to understand legal research, client services and how to draft legal documents and correspondence.

Upon completion of the degree, students will be equipped for entry-level positions within a legal department or firm.

Learn more about the Legal Assistant Technology degree here or contact the Owens Admissions Office at (567) 661-7777 or

Owens Community College to offer Animation Major

Posted on July 19th, 2022

Students will have another way to explore their creativity with a new degree offered at Owens Community College. Beginning in Fall 2022, Owens will offer an Animation Major.

The Animation Major is part of the expanded technical arts program at Owens that features Visual Communication Technology (formerly Commercial Art) and Commercial Photography in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts. In this two-year course, students will master illustration, graphic design and application of 2D animation through classes such as life drawing, digital video, digital media for animation and more.

“Students will understand fundamental principles of illustration, typography and graphic design as well as the application of animation principles as they relate to the digital media industry,” said Jeremy Maier, Chair of Fine and Performing Arts.

According to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services 2028 Ohio Job Outlook, graduates of the program can earn up to $27 per hour with careers such as animators, game design artists, character and background designer and storyboard artists.

Learn more about the Animation major here or contact the Owens Admissions Office at (567) 661-7777 or

Owens Community College to offer new American Sign Language (ASL) Certificate

Posted on July 19th, 2022

There are more than 350 languages spoken in the United States. One highly specialized language used by thousands of Americans is not spoken. Beginning in Fall 2022, Owens Community College will offer an American Sign Language Certificate.

“Having the American Sign Language Certificate available at Owens Community College will really set our students apart and set them up for a path to success,” said Jen Hazel, Humanities Program Director. This certificate can stand alone or be added to other degree fields in health care, education or business to increase a student’s post-graduate employment options, Hazel said.

In this two-semester certificate program, students will learn fingerspelling, numbers, receptive skills and about deaf culture. With these skills, students will have a solid foundation to work with individuals who are deaf, hearing impaired or have a delay or cognitive disability where expressive and/or receptive language is limited.

Employers in those fields continue to broaden their search for multi-lingual employees and it can boost income significantly. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipated growth for ASL Interpreters is 24 percent by 2030; 8 percent is the average. The American Sign Language Certificate gives students a solid foundation of the language and culture before entering an ASL Interpreter program.”

Learn more about the American Sign Language Certificate here or contact the Owens Admissions Office at (567) 661-7777 or

Local Companies Seek Manufacturing Apprentices

Posted on July 14th, 2022

The Owens Community College Findlay-area Campus is looking to educate the next class of manufacturing apprentices for a special program operated by Raise the Bar Hancock County (RTB). In the Regional Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (RAMP) Manufacturing Apprenticeship, apprentices will be trained as multi-skilled technicians and earn while they learn. Companies directly hire apprentices to work a minimum of 24 hours per week at a competitive hourly wage as well as pay for at least half of an apprentice’s tuition and fees.

“This program gives both apprentices and companies an advantage as they continue to excel in the manufacturing world,” said Quinton Roberts, Dean of Workforce and Community Services at Owens Community College. “At Owens, we want to help not only our students succeed, but our region as well.”

RAMP was created in 2018 through a unique partnership including local companies, Hancock County’s workforce development organization Raise the Bar and Owens. The program has since graduated 17 apprentices, all remaining in employment, after their two years in the program.

“The RAMP program helps individuals gain meaningful employment and experience for in-demand positions. Once individuals learn the knowledge and skills they need for their company positions, the opportunity is endless,” said Tricia Valasek, Raise the Bar Executive Director.

Three sponsoring companies are seeking RAMP apprentices: Hitachi Astemo (formerly Nissin Brake Ohio), Kalmbach Feeds and Cooper Tire and Rubber Mold Operations. The RAMP admissions process is selective. Students are chosen by the company based on academic success, math capabilities and interpersonal skills during an interview process. Applications and interviews will continue occurring now through Monday, August 15.

The apprentices would begin Owens classes at the start of Fall Semester on Monday, August 29.

Learn more about the RAMP program here or fill out an interest form.

Owens Community College to Offer Media Influencer Certificate

Posted on June 29th, 2022

You might follow them on social media, you might even have bought products because of their videos. Media influencers. Now, you have the ability to become a media influencer right in northwest Ohio.

Owens Community College offers one of the first-of-its-kind Media Influencer Certificate beginning Fall 2022. The two-semester program can be completed on its own, or as an add-on to any program.

“This certificate will appeal to a broad range of students, such as students in Broadcast Media Technology, Commercial Art Technology, Music Business Technology and Entrepreneurship. It will be a benefit for them to learn to market themselves. Forbes recently published about this new and emerging career and predicts influencer marketing will swell to $15 billion this year. It’s an exciting opportunity for our students to get started now,” said Jen Hazel, Program Director, Humanities.

In this program, students will become proficient in visual storytelling, website building and advertising. Through different courses, students will learn skills such as web graphics creation, photography, writing, business and advertising.

As a media influencer, certificate holders will have the experience to influence others on social media to purchase items or services based on their reputation. According to Zip Recruiter, a media influencer could earn up to $74,500 if hired by a company. The salary could surpass $100,000 for freelancers.

Learn more about the Media Influencer Certificate here or contact the Owens Admissions Office at (567) 661-7777 or

2022 Artist in Residence at Owens Community College

Posted on June 7th, 2022

The Owens Community College Department of Fine and Performing Arts is proud to host Lee Fearnside and Simone Spruce, both of Toledo, as this year’s Artist in Residence.

Fearnside and Spruce will be featuring “Dissecting the Meaning of Community,” exhibits that respond to the events of 2020 that have redefined our social world. The two bodies of work will occupy different spaces in the Walter E. Terhune Art Gallery on the Toledo-area Campus, but the works reflect similar questions. Community can be defined by place, identity, affinity, affiliation and is more complex than surveys can portray. The way people talk about community is different with the age of social media, the internet and a global pandemic. Fearnside’s and Spruce’s work questions concepts of community, the impact of events on community, and invite viewers to consider how they conceive of community.

Lee Fearnside “Death Never Dies”

This artwork mourns 27 public figures who died in 2020 with essays and poetry by 40 writers paired with relief print portraits. The public figures range from Eddie Van Halen to Ellis Marsalis Jr., George Floyd to Jim Lehrer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg to Kobe Bryant. By reflecting on people through words and images, this project asks who and what do we want to say goodbye to, and who and what do we want to remember. Together, these images and words help us understand our relationships to each other and to ourselves during this tumultuous year.

Simone Spruce “Out of the Dark”

This installation has two sections. The first section is shrouded in cloth to create a dark space as the art is illuminated individually by spotlights. This work includes images from Spruce’s “To Serve and Protect” series. In “To Serve and Protect 2” Spruce asked viewers to remember that George Floyd had a mother. His death unified mothers around the world. Remember, a mother’s love is a mother’s love. In his last breaths, George called for her. There are no features on the officer and the black man’s features are not distinct. Spruce chose to paint the image in that manner because of the long history of police brutality.

There will be an opening reception from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, June 9. The exhibit will be open through August 12.

Owens Community College Cybersecurity Camp June 22 – 24

Posted on June 1st, 2022

Owens Community College Workforce and Community Services invites kids in grades 7-9 to a cybersecurity camp June 22 – 24. This camp is part of the Kids Classes and Camp series at the Dana Center, located at 458 Depot Road, Perrysburg, at the Owens Toledo-area Campus. Cost is $25.

“If we think about getting students excited about cybersecurity and what that looks like, starting them earlier on, even if they don’t go for the cybersecurity pathway, at least they’ve got that in their mind, at least they’re thinking about it,” said Eli Cochran, the camp’s featured instructor and a cybersecurity instructor from Delaware County Career Center.

No pre-requisites are required to attend the camp. Kids will learn a variety of skills at the camp, including coding and encryption through hands-on activities. They also will take part in interactive conversations and friendly competition.

The class will be held from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. the first two days and 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. the final day. Space is limited. For more information, contact Workforce and Community Services at or (567) 661-7357.

To register for the camp, visit

Owens Named Among Ohio’s Inaugural Collegiate Purple Star Campuses as Leader for Military-Affiliated Students

Posted on May 26th, 2022

Owens Community College’s outreach to those who serve or have served our great nation dates to its opening in 1965. The Rossford Army Ordnance Depot once occupied a site that is now a short walk to the College’s Veterans Hall. An Ohio Historical Society marker commemorates the location.

Owens has continued to refine and advance its services for military-affiliated students ever since. As a state leader in veterans’ services, the State of Ohio announced its inaugural class of College Purple Star Campuses, including Owens Community College.

Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner made the announcement in advance of Memorial Day weekend and during Military Appreciation Month.

“Owens Community College has a long history of providing a supportive environment for military-affiliated students,” Dr. Dione D. Somerville, Owens President, said. “Being named a College Purple Star Campus in the inaugural class is truly an honor and a testament to the work we’re doing with our military-affiliated students who are seeking a higher education and pathway forward in life.”

Led by Sharron Pappas, Manager of Veterans Services (Navy), Owens served more than 500 military-affiliated students in the 2021-22 academic year.

Student veterans, active duty service members and dependents and spouses of veterans have access to Veterans Hall, which includes a lounge area, study room, kitchenette and computer lab.  These military-affiliated students also have an opportunity to get involved in the Owens Student Veterans Organization (SVO), which is registered with the national Student Veterans of America. Student veterans have the option to apply for scholarships through the SVO.

A total of 33 colleges and universities in Ohio received the Purple Star designation. Ohio is the first state in the nation to award Purple Star designations.

“Congratulations to the 33 schools chosen as the first College Purple Star Campuses,” Governor Mike DeWine said. “Thank you for being examples of Ohio’s proud tradition of honoring our servicemen and women. With these Collegiate Purple Star Award designations, servicemembers, veterans and military-connected students are able to pursue higher education knowing that their school has the necessary support system and guidance to help them find their next steps.”

For more information about Owens Community College Veterans Services, please visit

College to Award 538 Associate Degrees at Spring Commencement ceremonies

Posted on May 23rd, 2022

On Friday, May 27, Owens Community College will award 538 associate degrees at the 56th Spring Commencement ceremonies at the Student Health and Activities on the Toledo-area Campus in Perrysburg.

A total of 36 students from the Findlay-area Campus will join the Toledo-area Campus graduates for the Commencement ceremonies scheduled at 10 a.m. for the School of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics; 1 p.m. for the School of Business, Hospitality Management and Public Safety and School of Liberal Arts; and 4 p.m. for the School of Nursing and Health Professions.

The graduating class features 197 students graduating with honors (3.5 grade-point average and above) as well as outstanding academic program graduates. All will be recognized at the ceremony.

This year’s Outstanding Graduates are:

  • Outstanding Graduate in Applied Engineering and Industrial Technologies: Austen Nissen, Welding, Perrysburg
  • Outstanding Graduate in Electrical Engineering and Computer Technologies: Dillion Gibbs, Electrical Engineering Technology, Morenci, Michigan
  • Outstanding Graduate in Transportation Technology: Wesley Sweet, John Deere Tech, Georgetown, Ohio
  • Gerald Bazer Outstanding Arts and Sciences Graduate: Caitlin Jones, Geography Concentration, Perrysburg
  • Outstanding Graduate in Business Technology: Caitlin Parker, Business Management Technology, Holland
  • Outstanding Graduate in Criminal Justice: Kara McCloud, Criminal Justice Transfer Pathway, Maumee
  • Outstanding Graduate in Food, Nutrition and Hospitality: Nakia Randleman, Culinary Arts, Sandusky
  • Janell Lang Outstanding Service Award in Health Professions: Olivia Wesley, Dental Hygiene, Toledo
  • Linda Myers Outstanding Radiography Student Award: Emily Tate, Radiologic Technology, Whitehouse
  • Outstanding Vascular Sonography Student Award: Kaylee Dombrowski, Vascular Sonography, Toledo
  • Outstanding Diagnostic Medical Sonography Student Award: Taylor Edwards, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Toledo
  • Outstanding MRI Student Award: Christopher Carr, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Toledo

State Board Recertifies College’s Department of Public Safety

Posted on April 28th, 2022

Owens Community College Department of Public Safety The Owens Community College Department of Public Safety (DPS), led by Chief Steven M. Harrison, has been recognized by the Ohio Collaborative Community-Police Advisory Board. Created to hold agencies to high standards, accountability and instill a greater confidence with the public, the Ohio Collaborative certified or recertified the College’s department in these three categories:

  • Use of force and recruitment and hiring
  • Community engagement
  • Bias free policing and investigation of employee misconduct

“We are always looking for ways to increase public trust and confidence. Being certified by the Ohio Collaborative helps us improve those efforts,” said Chief Harrison. “People can come to our college and know they are going to be in a safe learning environment.”

The College’s DPS was recertified for use of force, recruitment and hiring standards. In order to receive recertification, the department had to meeting various protocols including:

  • Conduct investigation/report review for use of force policy compliance.
  • Establish an agency recruitment plan.
  • Detail the sworn officer application and selection process.

DPS has received certification for community engagement as well as bias free policing and investigation of employee misconduct standard. To receive these new certifications, the department had to meet specific protocols including:

  • Share photos of agency personnel participating in activities or information exchanges.
  • Document reviews of body camera capture data.
  • Define timelines for the resolution of complaints.

The Ohio Collaborative is a 12-person panel comprised of law enforcement experts and community leaders, originally established in 2014. A total of 573 law enforcement agencies in Ohio have received certification.

Owens Express Baseball Team Hosts Doubleheader at Fifth Third Field April 30

Posted on April 19th, 2022

The Owens Express baseball team, led by head coach John Parisho, is returning to Fifth Third Field in downtown Toledo for an exciting doubleheader in preparation for the postseason and another run to the NJCAA Division III World Series. The Express will take on the Bryant & Stratton Bobcats on Saturday, April 30, beginning at 4 p.m. in the final “home” regular season games this season.

The Bryant & Stratton games will conclude Ohio Community College Athletic Conference play for the Express, who are in contention for the conference championship before beginning postseason play Tuesday, May 10.

Between games at Fifth Third Field, the Express athletic department will also celebrate its two national championship teams with on-field recognition. The Owens Express women’s volleyball team and head coach Sonny Lewis won its third consecutive national championship in November. Then, in March, the Owens Express women’s basketball team and head coach Stephen Perry, cut down the nets as the team won its first national championship. This was the first time since 2003 that the same school won the national championship in both sports in the same school year.

“We invite the entire Owens community, students and baseball fans to Fifth Third Field because it’s going to be a great Saturday for Owens Express sports in downtown Toledo,” Shelley Whitaker, Owens Express Athletic Director, said. “Our baseball team can’t wait to play a doubleheader at the best minor league stadium in America.”

The Express doubleheader is the start of a multi-year partnership with the Mud Hens and Fifth Third Field. “We are so excited for the return of baseball and look forward to our continued partnership this season and beyond,” said Troy Hammersmith, Manager of Special Events with the Toledo Mud Hens. The Express has inked a deal to host doubleheaders in downtown Toledo for the next two seasons.

Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids ages 6-17 as well as Senior/Military tickets. Owens Community College and Bryant & Stratton Students will be able to unlock free tickets using the promo code provided on their respective campuses. Students may present their student ID at the box office as well.

Purchase tickets HERE

For more information about the Owens Express, visit

College Hosts Visionary Ohio Author, Big Read’s Saeed Jones

Posted on April 15th, 2022

Owens Community College is pleased to host Ohio’s own Saeed Jones to discuss his recent memoir, “How We Fight for Our Lives,” the Owens 2021–22 Big Read selection. This hybrid in-person and virtual event culminates the year-long, college-wide exploration of Jones’s book, which has included a radio discussion series, ongoing events on campus and in local public libraries, and reading-related community service projects.

Spearheaded by award-winning Professor of English Jen Hazel and Director of Library Services Jane Berger, the Owens Big Read program brings awareness of different perspectives through books and accompanying activities on campus and in our surrounding communities. Accordingly, “How We Fight for Our Lives” chronicles Jones’s own journey as a queer Black man raised in Texas. Since its 2019 publication, the book has won numerous accolades, including the Kirkus Prize for Nonfiction and inclusion on Time magazine’s list of must-read books.

“Throughout this academic year, Saeed Jones’s telling of his personal history has sparked conversations, connections and new understanding on our campuses and beyond,” said Dr. Dione D. Somerville, president of Owens Community College. “We’re excited to host Mr. Jones to conclude the Big Read experience of his memoir and consider its implications on our own lives. I’m also proud to commend Professor Hazel and Director Berger on their shepherding of this year’s program and look forward to seeing what next year’s Big Read brings.”

WHO:              Author Saeed Jones

WHAT:             The Big Read Presents: Saeed Jones

WHEN:             Thursday, April 28

WHERE:           CFPA Theatre (10 a.m.), Toledo-area Campus; and Education Center 111 (1:30 p.m.), Findlay-area campus

LINK:      (10 a.m. only)

For more on Owens Community College’s Big Read, visit

College Receives Nearly $190,000 from State of Ohio for In-Demand Job Training

Posted on April 11th, 2022

The Ohio Department of Higher Education has invested nearly $190,000 in Owens Community College to create the Ohio Short-Term Certificate Grant Program allowing in-state students to receive up to $2,000 in need-based aid toward the cost of in-demand, career certificates.

Eligible students may apply and receive up to three different awards, provided the certificates are completed in succession.

These certificates include 26 credit and non-credit options in manufacturing and skilled trades, pre-apprenticeships, health support professions, logistics, office support, sales and first responders. Credit certificates are 30 hours or less, while non-credit certificates are 900 clock hours or less.

“We are excited to bring this opportunity to Owens Community College students,” said Dr. Denise Smith, Owens Provost and Chief Academic Officer. “After they complete their short-term certificate or credential, they will be prepared for licensure, if it’s required for employment, or they will be able to take the next step in a career pathway.”

Students may apply online for the Ohio Short-Term Certificate Grant Program funds immediately using the online application at The total award of $186,966 is available until June 30, 2023.

For more information, email the Owens Community College Office of Admissions at


Posted on April 4th, 2022

PERRYSBURG, Ohio – Owens Community College Professor of English Jen Hazel has been selected for the 2022 Dale P. Parnell Faculty Distinction Recognition by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC). Awarded to select individuals who make a difference in community college classrooms across the United States, this highly competitive national designation honors faculty who are active in their students’ lives and in their colleges’ activities to ensure student success.

“My passion for teaching runs deep, so I was honored to be nominated for this award,” Professor Hazel said. “Owens is such a great place to work; I know I am making a difference here. This award motivates me to continue doing the work I love and supporting our students, both in and outside of the classroom.”

“Speaking on behalf of the entire Owens community, I am thrilled for Jen and applaud the award committee’s recognition of what she has achieved,” said Dr. Dione D. Somerville, President of Owens Community College. “Her passion is evident from her many committee activities, her efforts to increase student access to Open Education Resources (OER) and her commitment to providing rich and relevant learning experiences for all. Jen consistently goes above and beyond to find ways that each student can learn, and we are so fortunate to have her on our team.”

Professor Hazel has taught at Owens for 15 years. In addition to her classroom instruction, she serves as the campus Assessment Lead and on the Completion, Center for Teaching and Innovation Implementation, and Opening Week teams. Professor Hazel also co-chairs the Curriculum Committee and the BIG Read and chairs the Oregon Road Film Series and The Silo committees. In the Humanities Department, where she is the Program Director, she currently spearheads the effort to embed tutoring into Composition I courses and is incorporating OER materials into other courses, including Composition II, to ensure students have access to the support and materials they need to succeed.

This is the second straight year that Owens faculty have been recognized nationally for teaching excellence, demonstrating the quality instruction students receive at the College. Associate Professor of Math Sarah Long received the Distinguished Faculty Recognition in 2021. In addition to AACC recognition, award winners also receive a custom commemorative medal and are further celebrated at a private reception during the AACC Annual Convention, which will be held in New York City from April 30–May 3 this year.

Owens Community College Hosts Area’s Largest College Night Events

Posted on February 25th, 2022

High school students and their parents, as well as prospective students of all ages, are invited to meet with representatives from approximately 100 colleges, universities, industries and the military when two of the premier college night events return following a two-year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In partnership with 12 area high schools, Greater Hancock County College Night will begin at 6:30 p.m. Monday, March 7 at the Owens Community College Findlay-area Campus in the Community Education and Wellness Center, 3200 Bright Road, Findlay.

In partnership with 17 local high schools, College and Career Preview Night is scheduled at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 9 at the Owens Community College Toledo-area Campus in the Student Health and Activities Center, 7315 Championship Drive, Perrysburg.

The college nights also feature presentations on financial aid and in-demand careers plus information tables focused on helping students succeed after high school.

More details and a list of representatives attending are available at