Message from Dr. Belinda S. Miles: Already Ready
August 27, 2021
As a nation and as a community, we continue to face challenges and upheaval that try our spirit and force us to dig even deeper to keep moving forward. As an institution of higher learning, we have the opportunity and responsibility to help students understand the world around us, even as we try to do the same. Our academic and co-curricular programs provide opportunities for students to engage within diverse groups, to develop independent thoughts and ideas, to listen to opinions that may not be aligned with their own, and to be responsible citizens of the world.
Thanks to your commitment to building minds and futures, we have been very successful in creating an environment that fosters innovative thinking, collaboration, and an environment where student and institutional success thrives.
This fall, we return to campus following protocols designed to keep our community safe while providing a welcoming environment to pursue our mission of teaching and learning. A video at the preceding link from Director of Security Scott Sullivan and Associate Dean of Students Adam Frank provides students with the information they need to navigate on-campus classes and activities this fall.
For those coming to campus, we want to show them we are happy (even through a mask!) to have them join us. I am pleased to report that in response to requests for additional security presence on campus to help students and employees adjust to our new cultural norms of mask wearing and social distancing (where practicable), we have arranged for additional safety personnel to assist this effort. Additionally, where appropriate, we can all contribute to reminding students and colleagues of these safety protocols and the importance of ensuring the safety of all college community members.
Our welcoming environment is also exemplified by WCC being named by Campus Pride as one of the Top 8 Best of the Best LGBTQ-Friendly Community Colleges in the United States. This is wonderful evidence of how we have created inclusive, welcoming, and secure places for our LGBTQIA+ community members to thrive. This has been a collaborative effort with special attention and accolades for Tiago Machado’s leadership and all that he and his team have done to advocate for and lead this change, making a difference in the lives of so many.
This achievement is just one example of the many efforts undertaken by all of you to elevate the student experience that makes WCC a leader among community colleges. As we celebrate our 75th year of excellence, this is a time to strengthen the work and focus on our strategic plan that builds on the experience of our first 75 years, and especially on the remarkable efforts each of you exhibited during this past year. We are well on our way to the next 75 years. We don’t have to get ready – we are already ready. We are #VikingStrong!
Dr. Belinda S. Miles