Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Student Engagement Challenge - Jan. 27

How are you coming on our 30-day challenge to engage students? 

My conversations with students last week ranged from "I am so glad to be back. I could not wait for classes to start. The break was too long," and "I have the best classes I have ever had this semester. My teachers are amazing," to "I am getting the shaft at this place. I can't get into any of the classes I want." 

The last one was an opportunity for intervention. I immediately connected the student with the appropriate office to get him the help he needed. I will make a point to follow up personally.

Be the bean!  

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Student Engagement Challenge - Jan. 21

Those who attended my State of the College Address last week heard me challenge Northwest College staff to become more intentional in engaging students. I told you we’re in the business of hope, and that the way to build hope is through people. That’s why, starting today, I’m officially challenging every NWC staff member to reach out and brighten one student’s day every day for 30 days.

Go beyond saying, “hello.” Comment on a new tattoo or hair color. Make an observation about the weather. Find whatever it takes to help one student know you appreciate his or her presence. It’s a little way to make a big difference to a student who’s feeling intimidated, alone or lacking in confidence. Even a student who’s on top of the world will feel better afterward.

If your work doesn’t put you in daily contact with students, use this challenge as an excuse to take a break once a day to walk down the hall. Who knows — finding time to say “hi” and make a positive comment might become the bright spot in your day!

Have a great week!


Friday, January 16, 2015

Welcome to the Jungle!

One morning this week I woke up with the Gun's and Roses song, "Paradise City" in my head. As I was heading to work, I smiled to myself and thought it an appropriate sentiment.

For some reason, something clicked in my brain and instead of "Paradise City" the lyrics to "Welcome to the Jungle" popped into my mind. Ha! Probably more like it.

Here is a toast to the '80's and hair nation. Ya gotta love it.

Welcome back to the jungle. Have a great semester.


Friday, January 9, 2015

State of the College Address

I have been working long days and late nights preparing for next week's State-of-the-College address. Do you think the Magic 8 Ball will help? Troy Hunt says, "Without a doubt."

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Happy 2015

I hope everyone was able to enjoy some down time over the holidays. I know I did! Together with my family we went snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and downhill skiing/snowboarding. A winter trifecta within an hour of our house. Ya gotta love it!

This time of year we read a lot about New Year's resolutions. Because my brain is wired for the school year calendar, I don't make resolutions. But if I am totally honest, I also don't make them because I don't want to feel like a loser for giving up on resolutions two weeks later when the craziness of spring semester and the legislative session begins.
Over the years, I have stopped obsessing about eating right, exercising and losing 10 pounds. I eat foods that make me feel well rather than what the media says the latest super food is (although I have to admit - I kinda like kale). I don't work-out to get in shape for snowboarding, I snowboard to get in shape for snowboarding for the pure enjoyment of it. The fact that it counts as exercises is an added bonus. As long as my clothes fit, I am not going to even think about my weight.  
Making these paradigm shifts has opened space for me to focus on gratitude and living with intention. My intention for 2015 is to live life to the fullest by having as much fun as possible and to make the most of my calling by working hard for community college students today and every day.

Warm wishes for 2015!