|Office of the Chancellor / Public Affairs||
Monday, November 1, 2004
Desert Sun 10-30-04
Educator hailed for dedication to college readiness
PALM DESERT -- An administrator at the Palm Desert Campus of California State University, San Bernardino, has earned "Educator of the Year" recognition from a valleywide organization.
Because of Cynthia Flores’ commitment to students, the Coachella Valley Mexican-American Chamber of Commerce presented her with its annual award.
Along with serving as associate dean at the Palm Desert Campus, Flores is active in the community.
For four years, she has served on the board of the Dr. Reynaldo Carreon Foundation, which provides college scholarships for local students.
She now serves as foundation president.
"She has been very important as a link to scholarship opportunities for many of our students," said Martin Martinez, foundation executive director and chamber co-founder.
Martinez described Flores as a "warm, caring person dedicated to education and getting students through college."
Since 1999, Flores has served as associate dean of the Palm Desert Campus. She is responsible for academic program development, admissions, outreach, student advising, campus technology and other areas.
She’s created programs that aim to ensure students’ success in college and is working with College of the Desert in an effort to increase the number of community college students who transfer to the university.
Although she’s not required to, Flores also teaches during the spring and summer sessions.
She said she finds it personally rewarding and gratifying to be in the classroom with students.
"When I walk into class, I really get charged up," Flores said.
"I learn from the students and they learn from me -- we learn from each other," she said.
In Race and Racism, a required undergraduate course she teaches, Flores tries to give students a meaningful understanding of civil rights movements.
"Some (students) don’t have a real feel for what those movements were about," Flores said.
At the same time, she engages students in a lot of open discussion about their own experiences with discrimination.
"People face it in many different ways -- sexism, ageism, and being treated differently because of their weight or the way they look," Flores said.
Of the recognition Flores has received, Palm Desert Campus Dean Fred Jandt said, "We’re very proud of Cynthia’s service, both to our campus and to the larger community. This award reflects that larger service."
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