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Touch Base Tuesday 8-24-21
Dear Faculty and Staff:
I wish to welcome you back to a new fall semester and a new academic year. Thanks to the good assistance provided by many of you, we experienced a successful in-service week and a successful first day of classes. Although we still face challenges due to COVID-19, with your help and support we will continue to monitor the health and safety of our students and colleagues and will rely on the recommendations of our Pandemic Committee to lead us forward. I am pleased to announce that Dr. Nicole Pinaire will be joining this committee as a faculty representative.
One of my goals as President is to assure on-going communication. To this end, I am pleased to present this fall’s first Touch Base Tuesday. For any new employees, this newsletter allows me to provide weekly updates to keep you informed of current activities and to provide a status report on important initiatives.
Last week, we held our first annual Cougar Comeback event on August 18. It was good to see so many students on campus. Thanks to Vice President Leenhouts for his leadership in bringing this new event to SCC.
As of yesterday, our enrollment report indicated that both FTE and credit hours are exceeding our budget projection for fall. As a reminder, our budget was developed based on a 5% decline in enrollment. Hopefully by Census, we will exceed our budget projection. My appreciation is extended to our three key leaders in Student Services who have done an extraordinary job assisting our student with registration: Diane Arnzen, Director of Advising Services, David Seward, Director of Financial Aid, and Delfina Dornes, Director of Admissions, Registration, and Records.
We experienced a plethora of activities last week as we welcomed faculty back to campus. On Monday, we celebrated the return of faculty with a lunch. It was a beautiful day as everyone came together in person, many for the first time, to socialize and reconnect. Thanks to Martha Kampen for taking the lead over this event and to members of Cabinet for their assistance in serving our faculty.
Also on Monday, we held an orientation for all new faculty. Thanks to Professor Nicole Nunn-Faron for her leadership in organizing and facilitating this important session.
Faculty had an opportunity on Wednesday to learn about our SENSE survey results and to hear a special message from our guest speaker, Dr. Christine Harrington. At this same time, I facilitated a meeting with our new Health Sciences and Workforce Division.
The All-Faculty Update took place on Thursday. Along with the usual college updates, we enjoyed a special presentation focused on student persistence and success by Dr. George Kuh.
I am excited about the academic year. As you may remember from Vice President Galbierz’s presentation, the state allocated an additional $10 million in core funding to the 12 community colleges. Both the additional allocation and our balanced budget and newly established strategic reserves create a solid foundation for achieving our goals and advancing our mission. We are also excited about our bond projects and the anticipated progress that will be made this fall with several major remodeling projects. When you get a chance, check out our Proposition Community College website for up-to-date information. https://www.stchas.edu/lp/prop_cc/index
Our success in moving the college forward – in achieving the hopes and dreams of our students – depends on how well we work together. I’m proud to be a part of this extraordinary family. Thank you for your service to SCC and have a great semester!