This week, over 500 prospective students plus their family and friends attended our open house where we showcased our 100+ degree, diploma and certificate programs in
Liberal and Fine Arts, STEM, Health Sciences and Service, and Career and Technical Education programs. Every department of the College contributed to the best Open House we’ve ever held so that our guests could enjoy learning about us and the opportunities available for their educational journeys.
I am grateful to our faculty and staff who went the extra mile by being at the College and showcasing Saint Paul College’s programs to our students and community members.
Legislative Friends Breakfast
Another highlight of this week was the Legislative Friends Breakfast where we welcomed legislators, business/industry partners, employers, and the chancellor of Minnesota State. Employers and some of our alumni working for them participated in a robust panel discussion facilitated by one of our current STEM students. The panel of experts and Saint Paul College graduates represented perspectives from Construction, IT/Finance, Business, Transportation, Health, and Manufacturing occupational clusters. The subject was “What is at stake for Minnesota’s economy with the shortage of a talented workforce? How does Saint Paul College provide the workforce talent Minnesota needs?” I am truly inspired by our students and alumni and know they will be contributing well to the success of the economic future for all of us!
As a college community of hardworking and dedicated employees, our staff and faculty work diligently to provide opportunities for an extraordinary higher education for our students and community members. Saint Paul College is all about our community and students. I am proud of our faculty, staff, and students. They inspire me to find a reason and a purpose to come to work each and every day.
Here’s a short recap of my activities this week:
Wrapped up HLC Annual Conference
I along with a team of faculty, staff, and administrators attended the
Higher Learning Commission conference in Chicago throughout last weekend. Saint Paul College is accredited by the
Higher Learning Commission, which accredits degree-granting post-secondary educational institutions in the North Central region comprised of 19 states.
Comprehensive Workforce Solutions
Along with four other Minnesota State presidents, the Chancellor, and Senior Vice Chancellor of Academic and Student Affairs, and the interim executive director of Comprehensive Solutions met about the development of a Comprehensive Workforce Solution model using the expertise and resources of our customized training and continuing education units to strengthen Minnesota's workforce in a manner that is financially sustainable and market competitive. This model must enable us to serve more employers more proactively, more comprehensively, while delivering greater value.
Saint Paul & Minnesota Community Foundation Governance Committee
I met with the vice president of Strategies and Communication and two new Governance Committee members to conduct an overview of Governance Committee, purpose, and the Governance Committee Work Plan.
Meeting with a Community Leader
I met with a community leader who is interested in Saint Paul College’s programs and Minnesota’s current and future economic and workforce trends.
Faculty Shared Governance Meeting
The Executive Leadership of the College and I met with the Faculty Shared Governance team to discuss systematic and strategic planning, enrollment, marketing and recruitment, program evaluation, construction projects, legislative priorities, and Friends of Saint Paul College strategic initiatives.
Open Meeting with College Community
To promote open and transparent communication, I held open office hours for faculty and staff to drop in. I am grateful for their dedication and commitment to our students and this college.
Weekly Legislative WebEx
I attended the weekly
Minnesota State College and Universities Legislative WebEx conference call where we discussed the latest developments at the capitol and Minnesota State’s legislative priorities.
Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Induction Ceremony
I was privileged to provide the welcome and congratulatory remarks at the College’s Phi Theta Kappa Beta Xi Alpha Chapter’s induction ceremony where new members took the oath of membership. There are over 70 new members joining
the Beta Xi Alpha chapter, all with a grade point average of 3.5 or above, and working to complete an associate degree. PTK is the international honor society of two-year colleges. Every year chapter members work collaboratively to complete an Honors in Action Project, combining academic research, leadership development, service and collaboration, and a College Project in service to the Saint Paul College community.
College Leadership Team Meeting
I met with Saint Paul College Leadership Team to discuss operational, tactical, and strategic priorities updates at Saint Paul College. I am proud of our team, which is comprised a group of talented, skilled, and hardworking leaders at the College.
Public Policy Neighborhood House
I attended a policy development committee meeting at
Neighborhood House, an intentional partner of Saint Paul College. Neighborhood House helps members of our community each year with basic needs, education, youth programs, and health and well-being. Their programs are offered for free to participants.
Meeting with Dougherty Family College Dean
I had a meeting with the new dean of
Dougherty Family College, University of St. Thomas.
Mayor Melvin Carter’s State of Our City Summit
I will attend Mayor Melvin Carter’s State of Our City Summit on Saturday morning, at Johnson High School, and look forward to the conversation about the future of Saint Paul with all those attending.
Pipefitter Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee (JATC) Graduation
I’m providing brief remarks at the apprenticeship graduation of the
Local Union 455 St. Paul Pipefitters JATC on Saturday. We’re very proud of our longstanding partnership, and the joint program offered through the St. Paul Pipefitters Local 455 and Saint Paul College. These well-trained, highly skilled pipefitters are employed throughout the Metro area in many different companies and settings, and contribute to our vibrant economic growth.
TPT Almanac – Higher Education Segment: Saint Paul College featured (5:51 minute mark – 8:05 mark)
Almanac: At the Capitol | Session winding down, higher education, new lawmakers | Twin Cities PBS Video (aired April 11, 2018)
Welding instructor Victoria LeMay was interviewed and represents Saint Paul College and the welding program so well. Students in a variety of the Career & Technical programs are demonstrating their highly technical learned skills, clearly showing advantages of 2-year colleges such as ours.
Here are various education-related articles that may be of interest to you:
Finally, I want to give a shout out to our faculty and staff who actively participated in our Spring 2018 In-service, focusing on “The Challenges and Opportunities of Continuous Quality Improvement” as we begin to prepare for the Higher Learning Commission Accreditation site visit in April 2019. We ALL agree that we have a compelling story to tell! Stay tuned.
I sincerely thank ALL of our staff and faculty for your dedication and commitment to the work that you do each and every day, and for providing exceptional service and opportunities for success for our students.
I will end this week’s blog by wishing you a relaxing weekend.
Rassoul Dastmozd, PhD
Saint Paul College