Wednesday, September 30, 2015

How do you say hello?

My family and I hosted our international students at our home for dinner last week. The students all signed the following poster with how they say hello in their language.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

State of the College Address

I hope you all enjoyed the Labor Day weekend. My family and I camped near Lander. On our way into camp we stopped at Sinks Canyon where the Popo Agie River goes underground.

The following is an excerpt from my recent state of the college address:

At Northwest College we are redesigning students’ educational experiences, reinventing how we do things, and changing our systems to promote student success. We are taking on bold new ideas and changing our paradigms. As a result, our passion is launching a 21st century comprehensive community college. How exciting is that?!

We are becoming brokers of educational opportunities rather than just offering classes. We are strengthening the role of advising and learning assessment to help our students succeed. We are empowering students as partners in developing their paths and achieving their educational goals. And we are implementing policies and practices that promote academic rigor and accountability.

According to a recent report from the American Association of Community Colleges on building the nation’s future to do all of this, we must provide leadership and financial resources to:
  1. Focus on policy governance – Substantial change cannot happen unless the Board of Trustees strategically creates the policy conditions necessary to improve student success and supports the president in leading courageous transformational change.
  2. Commit to the work – Sustainable change requires commitment and persistent focus.
  3. Use and share data – There is no reason to collect data if we don’t use it to drive our decision-making.
  4. Design for scale – Well-intentioned interventions do not have an impact unless they are implemented for all students.
  5. Emphasize professional development – Development of staff and faculty must be supported financially and be strategically focused to make an impact.

Northwest College needs everyone to be involved in implementing these initiatives and contributing ideas to redesign the new 21st century community college. When you believe THE purpose of your institution is to make students better through your passions, you take risks.

At a deep level, my passion is serving our students. In fact, it is my calling. That’s why I am at Northwest College. It is my hope that you will be as energized by the passion of your NWC employees and our students as I am. The turmoil of the past is over. I am very proud of the amazing shifts that I have seen over the last two years.

Our passion is moving us forward, and it’s making a difference in the lives of our students every day.


Thursday, September 3, 2015

Your future, our focus

At Northwest, we tell our students it’s “Your future, our focus.” When an institution focuses intently on its students, good things happen: they stay in school and complete their educational objectives; they are continually challenged by faculty who know how to help them get the most out of their classes; they find personal and academic success here at NWC and at the university level. And they succeed in the working world.
As a college, our success is measured by the success of each and every one of our students. While we’re busy focusing on them, it’s nice to know others are looking at us and comparing NWC to other colleges.

I’m happy to tell you we stack up pretty darn well! This week, the Powell Tribune reported Northwest College was ranked the No. 4 community college in the nation by WalletHub.

We don’t measure our success by national rankings, but it’s nice to be able to give that outside seal of approval to our students.

Congratulations! Thank you to all NWC faculty and staff for your dedication to students. And, thanks to our larger community for all your support in making this level of dedication possible.