As one of the few colleges in Oregon open for in-person classes this fall, Treasure Valley Community College students and employees are working hard to follow safety protocols to keep our campus and community safe from COVID-19. Face coverings, physical distancing and extra cleaning are now just a regular part of our practices. Although we can’t see smiles on faces, students report they are happy to be back on campus and I’m so appreciative of everyone’s willingness to follow the necessary guidelines.

COVID restrictions have impacted so much of what we do. In response, TVCC is getting pretty creative about reimagining annual events on our campus.

Each fall, we partner with community groups to host hundreds of high school students at the Emerging Leaders Summit. Since we can’t pack students into our gym this year, we are offering the event in a more flexible format. Instead of a one-night event, local high school students can take a free one-credit class in leadership over two Saturdays.

The free, two-day course will be held both virtually on-campus and online on Nov. 7 and Nov. 14, from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Students will learn leadership skills such as goal setting, understanding personalities, networking, college preparedness, job searches, interviewing and more.

Again, this course will be available for both live and virtual participation, but the in-person spots are filling quickly. Since we always plan for contingencies, this course may need to move to an entirely virtual setting.

By attending both days, students will earn one college credit in business from TVCC — at no cost! We are appreciative of our partnerships with Emerging Leaders Summit, and Community in Action for making this event possible. Check our website for more information or contact Chase Van Weerdhuizen at cvanweerdhuizen@tvcc.cc or (541) 881-5824 to get signed up.

Another annual event that is getting a makeover this year is our always popular Foundation Scholarship Gala. This year’s Scholarship Gala Auction will be held virtually via Zoom, Facebook Live and YouTube. People will still be able to bid on amazing live and silent auction items, purchase a Bling Ring and Support a Chukar but that will be done online.

We’ll be missing the large in-person gathering but we’ll still have some amazing live auction items like weekend getaway trips, handcrafted furniture, specialty homemade desserts and more! Anybody can join our live auction via Zoom, Facebook Live and YouTube at 7 p.m. Nov. 7. We hope you’ll plan to join us online that night and host your own Gala watch party with your friends, family or co-workers in your home or business. You can also shop online for our silent auction that will run from November 6-12.

We’re also doing our popular Bling Ring promotion this year. Here’s how it works: purchase a $100 ticket and if we draw your name you will get to pick any of the live auction items before the live auction begins. You can get your ticket in the Foundation Office, on our website, Red Apple or the FRCC Gift Shop.

If you can donate an item for our auction, purchase a Bling Ring ticket or buy something on our live or silent auction, we would be grateful for your support. A portion of our proceeds from this year’s event will also go into a special emergency fund for students affected by COVID-19.

Be watching our website for event details at www.tvcc.cc/foundation or call the TVCC Foundation Office (541) 881-5586.

Dana Young is president of Treasure Valley Community College. The views and opinions expressed in this column do not necessarily represent those of The Argus Observer.

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