MAY 10, 2005
A strategic conversation was scheduled to be held at 4:00 p.m. at the District Support Services Center in Tempe, Arizona, pursuant to A.R.S. §38-431.02, notice having been duly given.
Don Campbell, President
Ed Contreras, Member
Linda Rosenthal, Member
Jerry Walker, Member
ABSENT: Scott Crowley, Secretary
Debra Thompson for Rufus Glasper
John Neibling for Art DeCabooter
Mary Kay Kickels
Randy Kimmens for Phil Randolph
Attendance: Approximately 60, not including facilitators, camera staff, and campus staff.
STRATEGIC CONVERSATION (4:15 p.m. through 6:45 p.m.)
Welcome remarks were made by Vice Chancellor Steve Helfgot who offered a disclaimer that since this was the fourth strategic conversation he had been responsible, he will not be present the next time. He thanked the community partners present this evening, many of whom would be speaking. He acknowledged Rick DeGraw and Mario Diaz for helping to organize the evening’s strategic conversation.
Addressing the question: “What are Partnerships?”, Dr. Helfgot explained that community colleges were initially designed to be part of the communities in which they resided and the idea has expanded in that they now provide education for many people. Community colleges are now being embedded in a community and now work in partnership with communities and stay connected to meet the needs of people and the workforce. They play intrinsic role in the economy and partnerships have continued to grow in all sorts of communities. These partnerships are existent at the Maricopa Community Colleges and are transforming all who are involved. They strive to reach the need of partners and enhance educational opportunities for students. This evening was planned in such a way as to provide a crash course in hearing about a variety of partnerships that exist at the various colleges. The purpose would be to inform, enlighten, and motivate to do even more.
Rick DeGraw came forward next and stated that since the word community is our middle name, it makes sense that we should reach out to the community. Community partnerships are important because they bring things to us that we would otherwise not have. Three questions would be addressed during the course of this conversation. These questions were:
· What is the value of partnerships to our students?
· What is the value of partnerships to our communities?
· What is the value of partnerships to our local and state economy?
Mesa Community College President Larry Christiansen followed with remarks as to why it was important to have community partnerships, their value, and how community partnerships were carried out. In brief he stated that we have community partnerships because it is our core mission to serve our community through transfer education, occupational education, developmental education, and community/continuing education. We also enter into these partnerships because they fulfill our mission and reflect our values as an institution. These partnerships are a strategic goal of civic responsibility and are essential to NCA accreditation as part of engagement and service.
Dr. Christiansen stated that the value of community partnerships is reflected in the programs that have been established for students. Examples of these programs include The Connector Program with the Mesa Fire Department and a recent educational services agreement with the City of Phoenix. The value of partnerships to the local and regional economy is reflected in being able to provide critical workforce development and training that is critical to our local and regional economy. These partnerships provide a direct pipeline to jobs in the area. Value to the community is reflected in the partnerships that engage in joint planning for blending arts, leisure and education with the City of Mesa.
Mesa Community College does community partnerships by supporting community-based groups such as the East Valley Think Tank and the Community Roundtable. Internally, MCC provides support for the Center for Public Policy, the Center for Community Education, the Business and Industry Institute, the MCC Extended Campus, and the Commission on Excellence in Education. (A copy of Dr. Christiansen’s remarks is enclosed with the conversation’s official minutes and records.)
The following speakers made presentations as noted:
· Glendale Community College Dean Randy Kimmens and Scott Bergstrom, Shop Foreman, Coulter Cadillac and Chair of the Automotive Service Education Program Advisory Committee. Mr. Kimmens and Mr. Bergstrom spoke about long-term partnerships at GCC which include partnerships with Dodge/Chrysler/Jeep, Ford, and General Motors. Since 1995 they have had 60+ dealers participate and have received $3.0 million in donations to the programs. A total of 510 students have been enrolled with a total of 418 graduating. The return on dealership investment has been $180-351K and technicians average salaries between $44-97K.
· South Mountain Community College was represented by Dr. Raul Sandoval, Executive Assistant to the President. Dr. Sandoval indicated that SMC had been working with the Gila River Indian Community as both parties desire to have a real presence in Ahwatukee. Conversations have been taking place since the Spring of 2003 and they have finally received approval from the elders for the concept of a partnership idea. He mentioned that in dealing with a sovereign nation, there is a need to be respectful of their way of doing business and that there is a need to be patient. The Indian community is very patient and procedural. He mentioned that successes they have experienced with the Gila River Indian Community include:
o Early childhood training with Tribal Headstart
o Concurrent enrollment for GRIC high school students
o Consultation on establishing District 6 computer lab
o Advertising in GRIC newspaper
o Workforce development training opportunities
o HOOP for Learning
o GRIC Art Council partnership discussions with SMCC Performing & Fine Arts
o Ahwatukee/GRIC Education Center discussions
· Rio Salado College’s Dental Hygiene Program Director Liz Kaz introduced former student and graduate Cori Gwilliam. The program, which began in 1996, partners with the Arizona Dental Association which provides the facility for the education provided by Rio Salado College. The program grants an Associate of Applied Science in Dental Hygiene Degree and provides 92.5 – 96.5 credit hours of which 58 are in dental hygiene courses. They have 36 students per year and they have had 225 graduates. They also provide a clinical dental assisting program degree which is comprised of 23 credits. They have two cohorts per year consisting of 70 students per cohort. Ms. Gwilliam stated that she has been working in this field for three years now.
· Estrella Mountain Community College was represented by Joyce Jackson and Julie Richard, Executive Director of the West Valley Arts Council. They spoke about their common purpose of becoming a center of excellence in fine arts distinguished by diverse opportunities for students, artists, educators, advocates and audiences desiring to achieve their fine arts goals and enriching the quality of community life. They highlighted milestones experienced in the early years, middle years, current years. These have included music performances and festivals, plays, and art exhibits.
· GateWay Community College was represented by Mike Metzger, Dean of Instruction at the Maricopa Skills Center. He introduced Sharon Munson, Associate Director of AT&T’s Alliance Program which provides opportunities for employee growth and development. She spoke about a program developed for displaced employees that provided recareering skills at a high quality/low cost basis.
The conversation finished off with a panel discussion on the value of partnerships with a community perspective. Panel participants included: Moderator Mario E. Diaz, Mel Hannah of the Chancellor’s Community Advisory Committee, Peter Fine (CEO of Banner Health), John Ramirez (VP of Housing for Chicanos Por La Causa), and Mary Vanis (Director of MCCD’s Workforce Development). Highlights of their comments included:
o Mr. Hannah stated that the Greater Phoenix Urban League strives to serve underserved African Americans and encourages them to pursue education.
o Mr. Fine spoke about their efforts to train people in healthcare and the problems encountered because of the growing population. There is a need to migrate to the community colleges as a great resource for training workers to fill the buildings they are constructing. Banner has created a Banners Fellow Program at GWC wherein they pick the students and pay for their training. So far 119 student have graduated and several more will be graduating from SMC in bilingual nursing.
o Mr. Ramirez spoke about their statewide efforts in 26 cities which employs 800 employees. Their organization originated to address Hispanics and now meets their needs from diapers to nursing homes. Each year they give ten scholarships to each of the ten Maricopa Community Colleges and also provide 168 scholarships to Arizona State University. They have recently partnered with a mortgage company to help people purchase homes and maintain ownership. They are also developing an exclusive upscale condominium project of which profits will be used to fund revenue-generating projects.
o Mary Vanis stated that Workforce Development has been part of a system that has seen partnerships evolve with the community. Repeat business is being sought because they have been very successful. The workforce needs to address the needs of the community which includes young Hispanics and an aging workforce. She mentioned that many jobs that will exist in the year 2010 don’t exist today and they will employ technologies that we have yet to imagine.
Dr. Helfgot thanked everyone for their participation.
The meeting concluded at 6:45 p.m.
Governing Board Secretary