1. Why are you a candidate for the LCCC Board of Trustees and what qualifications make you the best choice for the office?
I want to give back to the college. LCCC, its staff and faculty helped me to change my life. I was a single mother on state assistance when I first walked through the doors of LCCC. Because of the education and support this college provided to me, I earned a degree and the self-confidence to believe my life, and the lives of my children could be different. LCCC has given me a great deal and I have a deep passion for the college.
As a long time state employee and the director of a small state agency, I have experience in managing public programs. I am familiar with the budget process, and have experience evaluating budgets. I have been through the process of reducing budgets and believe that knowledge and experience will serve the college well in the current fiscal climate.
My passion for the college, and my experiences as a student, an instructor, and as a public administrator will bring a well rounded and unique perspective to the Board of Trustees.
2. What are the top three issues at the LCCC Board of Trustees faces and how do you propose to address them?
The first issue is of course budget reductions. LCCC must consider people as a guiding principle when determining where cuts will be made. The college must continue to provide a quality education and services to the students while balancing the budget. In order to do that it must also make every effort to maintain quality personnel. While I am aware budget reduction will effect students and personnel, the college must do all it can to minimize the impact to people.
The second issue is employee morale. While there are efforts underway to improve this issue, I believe part of the problem is a sense that there is a lack of communication between the employees and the administration. I would encourage more open communication between the faculty, staff and administration. While administrators have taken steps to improve communication, it appears some employees still feel they are not being heard. Administrators must listen to and consider the positions of those in the trenches with the students.
Finally, declining enrollment has been a problem for LCCC for the last few years. Since economic downturns often result in an increase in college enrollment, I anticipate this will begin to turn around, if it has not already. To continue to improve enrollment I would support a recruitment program that focuses on veterans and those who find themselves in need of retraining as a result of the downturn in the mineral industry. Both groups will have opportunities for financial aid, and are in need special attention and assistance these days. In addition, while the college is a great asset to the community, as it should be, it could also be an asset to students regionally and even nationally. In these times, when the cost of college can be prohibitive for many students, the ability to provide a quality educational opportunity at a reasonable cost should be very attractive to students outside of Laramie County and Wyoming.