Message from Dr. Belinda S. Miles: Creating the Future Now!
January 26, 2018
Three years from now in 2021, Westchester Community College turns 75. It will be a special opportunity to spend the entire year celebrating our legacy and sharing our vision for the future. This was the focus of my annual address yesterday, where I posited three focus areas for continuing our journey as a high performing, twenty-first century college.
- Academic Excellence and Innovation. It is exciting to think about the future, and even more so to be the architects of it. Curriculum and service opportunities exist in so many exciting areas. Simulation labs, drone technology, community-based tele-health, virtual and holographic imaging, and predictive analytics are just a few new developments that we will need to prepare ourselves and our graduates to experience. This combines with programs we are building to guide students toward goal completion, such as Viking ROADS (Resources for Obtaining and Accessing Degrees and Success) and more.
We’re functioning in new ways with an evolving strategic enrollment management plan and other efforts designed to serve students better. People come to us because they trust us with their future goals— whether that’s a job, new career, transfer to a four-year college, or personal enrichment. Academic excellence and innovation is the fundamental and overarching way to describe why we are here.
- Community Partnerships. Now more than ever, our fate is intertwined with the world around us. Our ability to provide real-world learning experiences for students to leave us job-ready requires strong relationships with regional employers and organizations. Students seeking transfer pathways benefit from articulation agreements we maintain with university partners. Having strong relationships with federal, state, and county agencies and elected officials helps us attract resources and general support to the college.
We are all deeply engaged in community partnerships because we live here, work here, do business here, and represent Westchester Community College everywhere we go. As we head toward our 75th anniversary, let’s find ways to achieve even more synergy from current and future connections in the community.
- People and Place. Our people are paramount. We are here to serve our students. We do this, in part, by igniting in them a passion for learning and by encouraging their tenacity which helps them persist and achieve. Valuing and supporting our employees enables this work to happen. Our focus on place reminds us to be good stewards of all aspects of the college to ensure institutional longevity and the ability to fulfill our mission well into the future.
Each of us has a hand in creating the future now. This week signals the start of our planning process for a new strategic plan, one that takes us to the college’s 75th anniversary in 2021. I need to know your thoughts, your ideas, and your hopes for this process and this plan. How do you see our plans for academic innovation, enrollment management, technology, facilities, diversity, and others fitting together into a comprehensive strategic plan?
On a final note, it is with great pleasure that I congratulate the following faculty members who are reappointed with tenure in an action formally recognized by the Board of Trustees.
- Alexis del Sol, Performing Arts
- Kamil Hamaoui, Social Sciences
- Laura Milhaven, Counseling
- Megan Moore, Veterinary Technology
- Helen O’Brien, Human Services
- Jason Polisar, Chemistry
- Matthew Rogala, Mathematics
- Erich Werner, English
- Gelaine Williams, Counseling
Congratulations and well done!
Dr. Belinda S. Miles