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WE S T CH E S T E R C OMMUN I T Y C O L L E G E

4

AS I MENTIONED EARLIER, OUR

SINGLE GREATEST ASSET AT THE

COLLEGE IS OUR PEOPLE. WE’VE HAD

A LOT OF HIRES IN THE LAST TWO

YEARS, AND I UNDERSTAND THAT

THIS CAN CONTRIBUTE TO A FEELING

OF UNCERTAINTY.

Many employees spend decades at Westchester

Community College. What an incredible testimony to

have such a dedicated workforce! This also means that

we’ve reached the point where we are experiencing

regular entry of new talent when eligible employees

retire and others leave for new experiences.

Turnover can be very challenging, especially with interim

appointments. These appointments are crucial to

ensure continuity in operations and provide leadership

to maintain momentum, and I thank those of you

who have taken on those challenges. These roles also

provide a way to build skills and try out new positions

as part of talent development and inevitable succession

planning. But as much as interims contribute, we are

always serious about finding and appointing permanent

replacements. These search and screen processes that

the college engages in give us the opportunity to highlight

our excellent programs, faculty, and students and the

exciting opportunities ahead for the college as we move

in new directions with new leadership that will expand

opportunities for our students. When you are invited,

please participate in these searches—by evaluating

candidates, providing input, and especially in showcasing

the high quality of our programs. It is critical that we each

do all we can to attract the best talent for our college.

Last fall, we shared the results of the Chronicle’s G

reat

Colleges to Work For

survey, and recently we’ve begun a

process to gain a better understanding of these findings

and how we can create an environment that will best

contribute to the outcomes we seek for our students.

In some ways, some of the negative results of the

Great

Colleges

survey are no surprise given the status

of the staff and faculty contract negotiations

and our ongoing work to improve our shared

governance practices. I’m open to all ideas of

how to improve our collective experience at

Westchester Community College, especially

those focused on improving student success and

academic excellence.

Part of this effort to improve is the ongoing

negotiation at the table to achieve a contract

with our faculty. Our Board of Trustees has

asked for assurance that our negotiations are

continuing in earnest and a report is being

developed for their review.

We did reach an agreement on a staff contract,

which our Board approved but the County did

not. We advocated for that contract on behalf of staff,

and we have taken a position in support of CSEA’s filing

with PERB. We await the PERB judge’s opinion, and we

will share new information when it is available. While

we resolve this, we thank our staff for their dedication in

their roles in supporting student success. Please join me

in recognizing our staff and our faculty during

these processes.

Unrelated to those negotiations, we have brought our

non-represented managers on par with our faculty and

staff by instituting a merit step increase program. This

program is separate from cost of living adjustments. This

Board action was an important step to ensure equity

in our human resource practices and to recognize the

valuable contributions of our non-represented managers.

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