Tag Archives: Foothill College

Paul’s Graduation


My son Paul has graduated from Foothill College! Hooray! We are so proud!

On Friday evening, he walked with his fellow Studio Art graduates, then we celebrated with a wonderful late dinner at Sienna Bistro in Willow Glen. On Saturday, Paul enjoyed a day of video and board games and BarBQ with friends and family at home. Paul starts his studies again in August at San Jose State University where he wants to earn a degree in studio art with a teaching credential.




Images Copyright 2014 by Katy Dickinson

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Paul is Almost Done!


Next Friday, my son Paul graduates from Foothill College! He turned in his art portfolio and is finishing his last two papers. Then Paul takes one final exam and he is done.

This weekend, we set up the guest bedroom (for family in town for the big event).  Paul’s hair is cut, he has new glasses, and we have an appointment with the photographer.  I pressed his graduation robes, and only asked him a dozen times if he is sure he has turned everything in. Paul is tolerating his proud mother’s fidgets very well.


Images Copyright 2014 by Katy Dickinson


Filed under Home & Family

New Job: Everwise Vice President – Mentoring


Last week, I started as the new Vice President – Mentoring at Everwise in San Francisco. I am delighted to join a team helping progressive, successful corporations and non-profits to create world-class mentoring programs. My first big project will be with InovAtiva and entrepreneurs in Brazil!

Here is some of what drew me to Everwise:

  • Everwise connects professionals with the people and insights that can help them succeed at every stage of their career.
  • Everwise has re-engineered workplace mentoring using best practices culled from industry’s most effective mentoring programs and real-world experience guiding more than 60,000 successful mentoring partnerships over the course of 20 years.
  • The Everwise platform is built on the unified view that data, technology and workforce science can dramatically improve the way organizations develop their people.
  • Everwise has offices in New York City, San Francisco, and Minneapolis.

My new position at Everwise coordinates well with my ongoing activities. I will continue as the Chief Operating Officer for People to People (pro bono), as a volunteer for the TechWomen mentoring program of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, as an accredited EfM Mentor, and as a member of the Anita Borg Institute Advisory Board.

My husband John and I will be commuting to work together from San Jose to SF, where he is the Principle Architect, Open Storage at EVault (Seagate). Since our son Paul is graduating this month from Foothill College and transferring to San Jose State University in September, he can get to class more easily on public transit.

Image Copyright 2014 by Katy Dickinson

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Filed under Church, Home & Family, Hopper - Anita Borg Institute, Mentoring & Other Business, News & Reviews

Transfer to San Jose State


My son Paul has recently attended both “Admitted Spartan’s Day” and admitted students’ orientation day at San Jose State University (in San Jose, California where we live). He is in his final quarter at Foothill College and is excited about graduating in June with an Associates degree in Studio Art. After transferring SJSU in September 2014, Paul will continue to study fine art and also plans to earn a teaching credential.





Images Copyright 2014 by Katy Dickinson

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Happy Birthday John! Congratulations Paul!


Our family is celebrating John’s birthday and Paul’s progress towards graduation from Foothill College (and anticipated transfer to San Jose State University). Paul just received news of high grades on his second-to-last Foothill report card, and today started his final quarter there.

In honor of John’s birthday, Rev. David and Naomi Plocher (his parents) sent a card featuring what may be the first picture showing John with a model train.  At four years old, he was already fascinated by railroads. Below is a recent photo of John with his current N-scale layout in what used to be our garage.

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Images Copyright 2014 by Katy Dickinson, and 1966 by Rev. David Plocher


Filed under Caboose Project and Other Trains, Home & Family, News & Reviews

Paul was Admitted to SJSU!


My son Paul was just admitted to San Jose State University (California’s first public institution of higher learning – founded in 1857). He will be studying Art and Studio Practice for a SJSU Bachelor of Arts degree. Paul will graduate with his Associate of Arts degree in Studio Art from Foothill College in June 2014 and start at SJSU in September. We are so proud of him! You can see Paul’s art portfolio on his website: Paul’s Element.

I am particularly happy that Paul got his acceptance package after reading yesterday’s sad article “Students With Disabilities Aim For A College Degree, But Often Get Stuck” (by Joy Resmovits in The Huffington Post). In my last blog entry about Paul’s progress, I presented some of our challenges with the educational system. Paul’s hard work and dedication have now paid off. Hooray!


Images Copyright 2014 by Katy Dickinson


Filed under Home & Family, News & Reviews

Paul Applying to San Jose State University


I am delighted to write that my son Paul is finishing up his last year at Foothill College and applying to transfer to San Jose State University (SJSU) in 2014. In addition to studying Studio Art, Paul is interested in becoming a credentialed art teacher for children with disabilities. Samples of his art are below – with more in his online portfolio: Paul’s Element.

Raising a kid with disabilities is a challenge and I am proud of Paul and of our whole family for his successful progress. Paul has been blessed with some remarkable and excellent teachers – to whom I am forever grateful:

Paul also had more than his share of poor teachers but we survived them. I only ask that they and…

  • …the teachers who did not want disabled kids like Paul in their class:
  • …the administrators who told us that Paul would be lucky to get to college:
  • …the head of school who kicked Paul out because his disabilities were bringing down her scores:
  • …the career counsellors who took Paul and the other disabled kids on a tour of the sewer plant:

Please consider this…

Jane Goodall went in the back door to become an ethologist. That’s something I’ve thought about a lot, because people with autism usually have to go in the back door. We have a lot of trouble following the normal paths. We don’t do very well in interviews, which are a big problem for us, and a lot of autistic people also have extremely “uneven” academic skills. An autistic person can test at the bottom of the IQ range on one subscale and at the very top on another. For example, I had great difficulty with algebra because there’s no way to visualize it.  I couldn’t be doing what I’m doing if there weren’t any back doors.

Dr. Temple Grandin, 2009
In 2010, Dr. Temple Grandin was listed in the Time 100 list of the 100 most influential people in the world in the “Heroes” category.

Wish Paul luck in being accepted!  We will hear back from SJSU by March 2014.





Images Copyright Katy Dickinson and Paul D. Goodman 2011-2013


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