esident Shouan Pan to find out his vision and goals for the 2009-10 school year.”We are into some exciting yet difficult times. It’s exciting because community colleges across the nation are a new focus for the society … MCC, being a nationally known community college, we feel that we (have) to be responsive,” Pan said.
The MCC President has four major goals for the upcoming year, all centered around the challenges associated with the increase in enrollment and the measures the need to be taken in order to insure the continued success of students.
“This semester we are looking at about 25 percent student increase. You’re talking about 4 to 5,000 new students attending MCC. For us the major immediate challenge . is to continue doing a good job serving students. “Regardless (of) the number of students we have, it isn’t just about numbers. It really truly is about the quality,” Pan said.
Some of the issues being looked at are additional adjunct faculty and faculty resources, parking problems and the availability of facilities.
Another goal involves finding additional funding for programs that will respond to an increased demand for occupational training brought on by the downturn in the economy. This funding is being sought to strengthen and expand these programs for students looking for education in high demand areas. According to Community College Week, an independent newspaper covering community, technical and junior colleges, MCC is consistently in the top 100 community colleges, ranking 12 among those providing two-year certificate programs.
“There are lots of grants out there, a lot of stimulus funds, whether floating from the federal government, through the state, to the community colleges, to Mesa (Community College),” Pan said. Pan’s will also work to more effectively address the needs of students who come to MCC without the skills necessary to complete college level coursework. Pan said this will involve working with faculty and staff to improve support and services to help these students succeed in the long run.
The final goal for this year focuses on the increase in enrollment in online courses.
“If you look at the data, our internet enrollment is also up by 45 percent. In other words, more and more students choose to take one or more courses online. It’s a trend nationally,” Pan said.
“Some of the students do very well, some of the students don’t do so well. We can’t just say, ‘You sign up, if you fail, that’s your business.’ We can’t continue to subscribe to that philosophy,” Pan said.