Staying Engaged

I am a newbie even though I am in my fourth year at VSCC. Maybe that’s part of the reason I am still actively engaged….

in committees,
in teaching,
in advising,
in the community.

Over the years I’m sure it is hard to stay engaged in the discussions which almost seem cyclic in nature. Whether it is the resurrection of activity hours and “mandatory” advising or a “new” rubric, I’m sure some of you who have been here are feeling a little tired and maybe even disenfranchised.

Lately there are two things that keep me going:
1) students….some of them will graduate this May
2) my fellow teachers….we need to stick together.

Remember that the mission of a community college is sort of similar to what the Statue of Liberty stands for…..we take everybody! We are the only ones who stand between them and mediocrity. How can we rise up these “huddled masses” if we’ve become a huddled disillusioned mass ourselves?

I want you all to sit up straight and say, “I am proud to be a community college teacher.” You can make a huge difference to these students. We change lives and give people hope.

In the coming weeks, I may call upon you to contact your local government representatives to educate them on salaries at community colleges. We need to move everyone to the new salary plan. I trust the Chancellor when he says he is in favor and will pursue it. However, let’s make sure our voices get heard.

We deserve fair treatment for the work we do. I thank every single one of you who advises a student, transfers a call to the correct department, updates online content, and tries new teaching methods. We need to keep our standards high in the face of sometimes depressing news. Stay strong and stay engaged.

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