Merritt College President's Report

Merritt College Spring Planning Summit

Merritt held its Spring Planning Summit on Friday, May 7, and there was broad and enthusiastic participation of faculty, classified professional staff, and administrators. Delineating the true meaning of equity was the prevailing theme of the day, as we worked collectively on fleshing out our Educational Master Plan, revising the college’s Integrated Planning and Budgeting Model, and advancing Merritt’s work on Guided Pathways. Through extended breakout sessions, participants engaged in honest dialogue about what is working (and what can be improved) in the governance processes, and how Merritt can continue to make progress toward achieving college goals. Summit participants also spent time reflecting upon what Merritt College means to them, and then team members were asked to design a symbol that visually represented that conception.  

Merritt College Student Enrollment Phone Banking


On Wednesday, May 12, the Merritt College administrative team came together with members of the Peralta Federation of Teachers (PFT) to call/text hundreds of students to encourage them to enroll in Fall 2021 courses. The collaborative project was the brainchild of Jennifer Shanoski, PFT President and Merritt College faculty member in the chemistry department. Encouraged by past success with phone banking efforts in other areas, Dr. Shanoski mobilized her network for this important undertaking. Merritt Director of Research Nathan Pellegrin produced a call list that comprised students who had applied to the college for the Spring 2021 term, but for various reasons never actually enrolled (a list of nearly 1500 names). Finally, the Dean of Enrollment Services Ree’shemah Thornton made counseling and Admissions/Records support available to the students through real-time zoom appointments. We plan to do additional phone banking events between now and the beginning of the Fall 2021 semester, as we focus on increasing enrollment and providing our students with the access and support they need to attain their academic goals.  

Merritt College Landscape Horticulture Annual Plant Sale


Earlier this month, the Landscape Horticulture program kicked off its Annual Plant Sale. It proved to be not only a smashing success, but it also provided an opportunity for our community to safely congregate and enjoy the beautiful flora. This event began in the mid-1980s as a project spear-headed by the Associated Students of Merritt College. Since then it has grown from a small affair to a greatly anticipated event that attracts folks from far and wide. But the focus remains the same--helping our students highlight to the public the various aspects of crops and plant production. Revenue generated from the sale are used to not only to cover simple operational expenses (purchasing soil, pots and seeds, etc.) but to fund student scholarships as well. Monies are also used to pay for small emergency repairs for the eight-acre facility. If you are interested in purchasing a lovely plant for your home you can still do so, as we offer online sales with appointments for pick up. Please visit


This article is taken from the President’s Report, written by Dr. David M. Johnson, Merritt College President, that was presented to the PCCD Board of Trustees during their regular meeting on Tuesday, May 25, 2021.

Tags: David M. Johnson, Merritt College

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