Cleveland State Welcomes New Deans

Thursday, January 30, 2014
Dr. Sal Mirza
Dr. Sal Mirza

Cleveland State Community College has hired two new deans. Dr. Sal Mirza will serve as the dean of Business and Technology while Dr. Robert Brandon II will serve as dean for Humanities and Social Sciences. 

Prior to accepting the position at CSCC, Dr. Mirza worked at Midway College in Midway, Ky., where he served as program coordinator of Human Resources Management, Leadership and Marketing, and was also a member of the teaching faculty since 2009. He has nearly 30 years of industry and corporate experience including research and development into chemical processes of paper manufacturing for Allied Colloids, LTC, Boise Cascade and Buckman International. For the latter, he advanced into the role of International Technical Marketing Specialist and concluded his career there as Global Market Manager responsible for strategic planning, marketing, tactical sales plans and assessment, internal and external consulting. 

He also managed a multi-functional and culturally diverse global team of 25 members to deliver marketing strategies, and support new technologies and services world-wide. A significant achievement for Dr. Mirza was the invention and patent of a micro-partical application technology that improved paper machine operations and product quality. 

Dr. Mirza holds a Ph.D. in Organization and Management, Human Resources Management from Capella University, an M.B.A. in Global Management from University of Phoenix and is a graduate of the Royal Society of Chemistry, University of Huddersfield in Huddersfield, England.

Dr. Mirza said, “I really like the campus. It’s nice and small and when I interviewed, everyone was very friendly and seemed really genuine.

“We have a lot going on at Cleveland State—workforce development, continuing education, dual enrollment. In addition to awarding degrees, there are all of these other opportunities and activities that we do for our community. I would like to get up to speed on all of these things and learn more. I would also like to catch up and learn where the Business and Technology division has been, where it is now and what is the vision we are working on and how does that fit with the college’s mission.” 

In his spare time, Dr. Mirza enjoys playing soccer, scuba diving and spending time with his wife, Rosy Covarrubias.

Prior to accepting the position at CSCC, Dr. Brandon served as chair of the Department of English and the Department for Student Success at Rockingham Community College in Wentworth, N.C. where he had been a member of the teaching faculty since 2005. Prior to completing a doctoral program in English Language and Literature at the University of North Carolina in Greensboro, he acquired an M.A. in English Language and Literature from East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tn., and provided language arts instruction at Vance Middle School in Bristol, Tn.

During his tenure at Rockingham Community College, Dr. Brandon served as chair of the Program Development Committee, sponsored the Sigma Kappa Delta honors society, served as liaison to the North Carolina A&T 2+2 Program and was very active in the committees related to academic outcomes. Brandon chaired the college’s QEP committee whose plan entitled Student success through Orientation, Advising, & Relationships: SOAR at RCC; A Quality Enhancement Plan was reviewed and approved in October. Brandon’s publications and presentations embrace both pedagogy as in “Designing Effective Writing Assignments” and scholarly investigation as in “Warof beþ ?e adrad? Monsters as Spiritual Tests in the South English Legendary’s Voyage of Saint Brenda”, the latter a paper presented at the 46th International Congress on Medieval Studies in 2011.

“Taking this position was a natural progression,” said Dr.  Brandon. “I’ve worked a lot in curriculum and design and leading a program. I was looking for a place where I could continue that progression and CSCC has a reputation for providing high quality education and for being very innovative in its programs. It’s a real pleasure to be able to be a part of that.

“Everyone has been very welcoming and helpful. If I’ve needed anything, they’ve been right there. The Humanities and Social Sciences division has a lot of innovative teaching strategies going on right now with social work and learning support and other things that are happening. I just want to support those things and help the faculty to continue to provide a high quality education for the students.”

In his spare time, Dr. Brandon enjoys coaching youth basketball and soccer and spending time with his wife, Melissa, and their twins, Ryne and Emily, seven. They are also active in their church and are currently looking for a church in Cleveland. 

Dr. Robert Brandon II
Dr. Robert Brandon II

Bea Lyons Honored At “Tea For Bea”

When Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Kimberly McCormick, established the Faculty Fellows Program during 2014, several well-known and respected educators were named as inaugural fellows. The Social and Behavioral Science Division honored Bea Lyons as its fellow. A special “Tea for Bea” was recently held to serve as a springboard for the first endowed fellowship ... (click for more)

Chattanooga State Kimball Announces Early College Open House

Chattanooga State Community College announces an Early College Open House on Wednesday from 4-6 p.m. CST at the Chattanooga State Kimball Site at 2100 Main St. in Kimball. College representatives will be on site to answer questions, assist with dual enrollment grant applications and process registrations on the spot.  Chattanooga State's Early College Program gives students ... (click for more)

Unexpected Amount East Ridge Owes On Fire Hall Property Rises To $603,000; City To Apply For Reimbursement

The unexpected amount the city of East Ridge will owe the state on the fire hall property in connection with the Bass Pro development has risen to $603,000. Earlier, East Ridge officials said the payment would be $428,000. City Manager Andrew Hyatt said Monday, "The Tennessee Department of Transportation notified the city of East Ridge that an appraisal of the city’s former ... (click for more)

Fire Breaks Out At House Off Highway 58

A fire broke out on Memorial Day afternoon at a house off Highway 58. A 911 call was made at 12:10 p.m. reporting a house fire at 6019 Hillcrest Dr. The Highway 58 Volunteer Fire Department responded and found fire showing on an addition to the house. Firefighters worked quickly entering the addition to extinguish the fire from spreading to the main level of the house. ... (click for more)

A Memorial Day Reflection

I wish I could find that combination of words that would capture an inclusive meaning of Memorial Day.  I have attended many Memorial Day programs at the Chattanooga National Cemetery, so many that now they have merged into one memory.  But what stands out is that each year there are more friends and veterans to visit.  Some gave their all many years ago.  And ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Two More Kick Out UAW

Woody Hayes, the great Ohio State football coach, used to teach his players to “paralyze resistance with persistence” but, my word, the likable theory has taken quite a beating in the past two years at the NTN-Bower ball-bearing plant in Hamilton, Ala. The workers there voted to decertify from the United Auto Workers union two years ago but getting the UAW out the door has turned ... (click for more)