President’s Friday Letter, 3-13-15

It’s Friday the 13th and this day marks the beginning of some strange things…

After Assessment Week ends next Thursday, we enter into a 2 week spring break.  I’ve never experienced a 2 week spring break.  I don’t know whether to be happy or confused.  While unusual (like a Feb 29th), I hope that we all make use of the anomaly, either personally or professionally.  I’m doing a little of both.  I’ll be in Germany for 10 days followed by some time in Olympia on behalf of Cascadia.  Meagan Walker will be acting President during my absence (which begins March 19).

Next week the Board “meets” to vote on tenure.  But, something in the air has prevented 3 of the Trustees from being physically present, so we will have 2 Trustees in the room and 3 on the phone for the votes on each of the candidates.  Given the unusual absences, that’s the only business we’ll conduct.  It is custom at Cascadia to have affirming comments by the community regarding the candidates at the March meeting; we’ll save those for April’s meeting.

Over the next three weeks a magical, edible forest will grow in our green space.  I’m not joking.  Truck loads of dirt will be delivered, trees and shrubs will be planted, and a forest will begin its growth.  This is a planned event in collaboration with the Grounds Department to develop an eco-friendly and sustainable teaching landscape on the Cascadia side of campus.  We’re all pretty excited to see it begin and evolve.  As it takes shape, the Grounds folks will hold some introductory workshops on what to see and experience here.

This last week I was in deep discussions with Bellevue College, LWIT, and the City of Sammamish.  The City really wanted the three of us to lease a newly available space from them.  It’s a space about the size of CC3 out on the Sammamish Plateau.  As interested as all three higher ed institutions were in trying to provide a satellite center, the cost was prohibitive.  We were given about 10 days to get introduced to the idea and make a decision.  While exciting, it was strange to have to complete an entire analysis, collaborate with 2 other institutions, and make a binding decision in such a short time.  We did it, and we think we made the right decision not to extend ourselves in these slim times.

So how’s that for Friday the 13th? Of course there are normal things happening, like budget, classes, hiring, etc. Feel free to stop by if you need an extended update on one of these topics. Those reported today were just the most interesting.  Let’s hope it doesn’t get any more strange.  Have a great few weeks and I’ll write again the first week of Spring Quarter.

One thought on “President’s Friday Letter, 3-13-15

  1. Today is also the “ground breaking” of the new (old) Collaboratory! Or would we say, trailer breaking? I brought my sledgehammer that was laying around and I’m ready for demolition day! How’s that for Friday the 13th shenanigans?

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