Sandy Bennett is the Manager of Professional Development, Onboarding, and Employee Engagement at Ohlone College in Fremont, CA. Before assuming that role, she served as the Extended Opportunity Program and Service (EOP&S) and Cooperative Agencies Resources for Education (CARE) Coordinator for 25 years at Ohlone. Also, she supported CalWORKs (California Work Opportunity and Responsibility for Kids (CalWORKs) students for two years. Sandy passionately walked alongside students guiding them through pathways that lead to academic success.
As she responds to Ohlone College's diverse community's growing needs with integrity, hard work, compassion, sensitivity, innovation, creativity, equity, and inclusion, Sandy empowers students and staff with encouragement and a "You can do it" message. She believes the secret sauce of success is building a community because connecting, engaging, developing allyship, and collaborating with others is powerful!
Sandy's vision and mission are to create an experience that exceeds the student and employee's expectations. She is always willing to help anyone. Her people-centric focus supports the premise that every student makes the institution's tomorrow possible. In addition to being a catalyst for community college students, Sandy is a bridge for adult learners interested in enhancing and advancing their skills.
Sandy promotes ongoing learning through high-quality professional development activities and engagement. She has provided and implemented a myriad of learning and development opportunities such as Franklin Covey's 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and Leading at the Speed of Trust, "The worldwide leader in performance improvement and Leadership Development."
In 2017, Sandy launched the Ohlone College Leadership Academy. The Leadership Academy, a ten-week voluntary program that creates an avenue for Ohlone classified professionals to examine their character, competence, customer service, self-awareness, and branding. Sandy led the 2021 We Belong Week at Ohlone, a voluntary activity where full-time and part-time employees could share what they know to strengthen the college community, add value to increasing the knowledge base, and upskilling one another.
Sandy seeks continuous learning and growth opportunities. She has been recognized for her work with numerous awards. In 2008, she received the California Community College Association Leadership Award. In 2018, she was named the Ohlone College Employee of the Year. In 2019, Sandy was one of four people in California who received the California School Employee Association (CSEA) Member of the Year Award. In 2020, Sandy was one of four people in the country who will receive the National RISE Award (Recognizing Inspiring School Employees). The U.S. Department of Education bestowed the honor.
"Sandy is inspired never to stop learning because life never stops teaching."