Message from Dr. Belinda S. Miles: Looking Ahead to 2018
January 12, 2018
The snowy start to 2018 led to more mild weather this week in time for students to meet with counselors and register for classes. Thanks to everyone who has been devoting attention to providing a positive student experience. Everyone from ground crews keeping roads, sidewalks, and parking lots clean, to counseling faculty helping students on their pathway to their goals, to staff processing hundreds of requests daily—every interaction makes a difference and contributes to a positive Viking experience. We appreciate your talent and efforts, especially now and into next week as students make adjustments and get started with their classes.
You are all invited to a college assembly on Thursday, January 25 at 4 p.m. in the Davis Auditorium for my annual address focusing on our momentum toward the college’s 75th anniversary. For the past three years, our strategic plan has guided our efforts in five broad categories.
- Student Success. Our primary focus is on teaching, learning, and improved student outcomes across the entire spectrum from entry into the college, successful academic progress, selection of a major, completion, and eventual transition into higher levels of education and careers. Our student success work encompasses curricular, co-curricular, and extracurricular programming that create a comprehensive Viking experience for students.
- Workforce Development. Our community college mission includes a role and contributions as a part of the local economy. Students in applied degree programs or in shorter-term workforce development programs are part of this. Community colleges are well positioned to have great impact meeting immediate workforce training needs in high growth occupations. Just last evening we celebrated more than 125 completers of various in-demand workforce programs. Congratulations!
- Community Engagement. Well, “community” is our middle name! Our extension locations play a strategic role in expanding our access mission to more people throughout Westchester County by matching our high quality programs to local community needs. We have myriad relationships with schools, businesses, government agencies, nonprofits, and community organizations where synergistic alliances bring more individuals here and help both students and partners excel.
- Stewardship. Our ability to attract, allocate, and effectively manage resources enables us to carry out our mission. Everyone at the college becomes a steward of our mission as we serve in various roles that support the learning experience. Positive and consistent stewardship of our relationships with external funders and partners is another way we secure the college’s prominence long into the future.
- Culture. Through the years, we have celebrated the distinguished careers of colleagues who have retired or continue in service. Simultaneously, we have welcomed new talent and new perspectives. Dozens of new faculty are progressing through the tenure track process and already making their mark on the college. Our people and our shared experiences make us who we are as a community. Our recent work to codify our shared values, implement a new diversity, equity, and inclusion plan, commit to innovation in teaching and service practices, and engage each other in new cross-functional working groups are a few reflections of our commitment to each other in a dynamic and evolving culture.
On Monday, we honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Then, we welcome students and colleagues to the spring term on Tuesday when we also acknowledge the National Day of Racial Healing. See you next week!
Dr. Belinda S. Miles