Update From President, Jason S. Wood, Ph.D. – October 9, 2021

Dear College Community,

Autumn is my favorite season!  The leaves are changing, the air is crisper in the morning, and apple-cider donuts aren’t too difficult to find!  Hopefully you are able to spend some time doing something you enjoy with the people you love.

As for a few updates from around the college… here you go:

  1. COVID Update
    1. The attached disease burden numbers appear to be stabilizing in 3 of our 5 counties, and throughout the state. Hospitalizations and deaths are lagging indicators, so will likely take a couple more weeks for those to reliably decline.  Overall, these are promising data trends.  We will evaluate our status in the Return to Campus Plan to determine the appropriate timing for the next steps forward.
    2. For information on specific actions to address outbreaks, please see the dashboard which is updated daily.
  2. Fall Semester December Graduation
    1. We are pleased to share there will be in-person graduation ceremonies for Winter Graduation.  The Graduation Committee has worked with the COVID Operations Team to schedule two in-person ceremonies.  They will be held at 1:00 pm and 3:00 pm on Friday, December 10, in the Auditorium.  The Graduation Ceremony Schedule includes the breakdown of programs assigned to each session.
    2. Please help remind students to submit their Program Completion Applications (PCA), even if they do not wish to participate in the ceremony. The PCA is located in the MySWTC Student Portal and is required for all students completing their program. Once submitted, students will receive a confirmation email which includes graduation instructions and details in regards to caps, gowns, etc. To allow enough time for ordering, students should have their PCA submitted by October 22.
  3. The Boards for the College, Foundation, and Real Estate Foundation will meet for a joint meeting on October 14.  The evening session will be dedicated to learning about the trends impacting our local employers and the opportunities for us to help them succeed.  You can read the same report, attached, that will be discussed at the retreat.  We will also consider our recent Graduate Success Report and early results from listening sessions conducted with local employers.  As a result of the listening sessions conducted with employers, we expect to update our Core Abilities.  It is likely the project will be led by faculty and staff over the next 6-18 months.  We anticipate creating more opportunities to better serve our students and regional employers as we learn and understand their needs.
  4. Evening Custodial Team
    1. We have an excellent evening custodial team!  It was my pleasure to work with them for a few hours last Thursday.  They work hard.  They care about keeping campus safe and clean.  They know many of our faculty, staff, and students.  I appreciated their questions and feedback while we shared a roasted chicken and mashed potatoes dinner prepared by Rex.  When you get a chance, please thank our custodians for their efforts.  I know I am grateful for their good work.
  5. Kudos to…
    1. Kim Govier for sending the attached shout out to Amy Campbell!  Amy has done an exceptional job working on Project Rise to implement the finance module.  Despite continued difficulties, Amy works relentlessly to find solutions.  Thank you, Kim for recognizing Amy!
    2. Dan Wackershauser and Janet Giese for stepping in and serving on the COVID contract tracing and notification team!  Janet and Dan both have expertise that is helpful in working through the COVID cases and we are very grateful for their service.
    3. Katie Anderson and Erin Kerkoff for their efforts to help their Graphic Web Design (GWD) students have hands-on learning opportunities.  I spoke with three different GWD students this week and they were proud of their billboards, animated social media graphics, and campus monitor ads. 

Finally, if you have two and half minutes, please consider the service you provide at the college as you watch this video.  I hope you will feel joy, pride, and comfort in knowing the work you do makes a difference for our students.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions.  Because I care about your success, please let me know if there is anything I can do for you.



Posted in COVID-19, Update