Update From President, Jason S. Wood, Ph.D. – January 15, 2022

Dear College Community,

Welcome to the Winter 2022 semester!  Classes start on Monday, January 17 which is also Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  Dr. King shared many salient words of wisdom.  Among my favorite, “The time is always right to do what is right.”  May we help all of our students feel welcome this semester as we do right by all.

From around campus:

  1. COVID Protocol – see the updated expectations with specific instructions.  Here is a basic summary:
    1. If you are sick, please stay home.
    2. Please report positive tests to public health officials and follow their instructions.
    3. Please wear facemasks at work.
  2. Inservice
    1. Thank you for participating at in-service.  Please let us know what went well and want can be improved.
    2. The video recording of in-service is available on The Hub Action Items.
    3. You are welcome to enjoy the “Facts from Campus” video presentation.
  3. Charger Tech 360:
    1. Please remember the many benefits to our students because of our technology program.  Students should receive a laptop with pre-loaded software when their classes start.  If they need assistance, our IT team stands ready to help.  We are currently using federal relief funds to cover the $400 semester fee so students will not pay anything for the computer or IT support this semester.
    2. Starting in the fall, students will be responsible to pay the technology fee.  We are, however, reducing the cost to $300 per semester for students starting this coming fall.
    3. We encourage continued development of Open Educational Resources (OER) as a means to help reduce the cost for students and improve the quality of learning.
  4. Demographic Drought
    1. Thank you to Troy Maggied for presenting local demographic trends during in-service.  National and world data is well-outlined in the emailed article entitled, “Global Sansdemic”.  Both have been part of researching and planning efforts for our college.  Feel free to share your thoughts and insights regarding opportunities.
  5. Homelessness
    1. Please take a moment to observe Randy Bacon’s exhibit, “The Road I Call Home”, being installed in front of the Lenz Center.  The exhibit presents stunning, poignant, and telling portraits featuring homeless individuals. The display emphasizes the beauty, identity, and integrity of each person.  Each subject shares a personal story about homelessness which helps raise awareness about poverty.  The artist conveys a simple message, “We’re all one-of-a-kind special people and every single one of us matters.”
  6. Budget:
    1. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) number we use for calculating employee raises has been posted at 4.7%.  At this level it would cost approximately an additional $675k for wage and benefits per year.  Inflation is also increasing the cost of doing business.  In other words, we are looking at close to a million dollars to simply do what we did this year.  Enrollments, which are essentially flat, are also something we are watching closely.
    2. We will be exploring several options to present a budget to the Board for consideration.  You are welcome to submit creative ideas, innovative solutions, or entrepreneurial options.  Please share in your teams, with your supervisor, and/or directly with any member of the Executive Team.
    3. Budget managers are now able to begin work on the 2022-23 budget plans in Anthology Finance!
  7. Kudos to…
    1. Everyone who worked on the Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP) project!  We exceeded our goal of 25 beds.  I am grateful a few dozen kiddos will now be able to sleep in their own well-made beds. The SHP folks, all local residents, sent several notes of appreciation. 😊 Well done!
    2. Vicky Rundle!  Who received the following thank you note from a recent graduate: “I just wanted to drop in and thank you, again, for all the help and guidance you provided me in not only the 2 years of school, but for the months after graduation as well.  I am so thankful for my education I received at SWTC and you are a huge part of the reason I’ve been successful. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.”
    3. Mandy Henkel and Sherry Kane! They did an exceptional job on the HLC Tour Guidebook!  You can find a copy on the Hub.
    4. Dennis Cooley! Dennis is teaching his 50th Leadership Academy at Southwest Tech. Well over 800 people have completed or are currently in our Leadership Academy.  Learn more by visiting the Leadership Academy webpage.

Please take care of yourselves.  We have a lot on our plates right now.  I am confident we will continue to help our students be successful.  Please let me know if you have any thoughts or questions.

Take care,


Posted in COVID-19, Update