Friday Letter, 9-16-16

Next Monday is Convocation. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone at the potluck and the 2-4pm event.  We’ve had multiple visitors to campus this summer and just this week I received several accolades.  I’d like to share them.

Last Thursday and Friday we had Leadership Eastside on campus. They sent me a note about our Conference and Events Manager, Paula Molina:

Hi Eric,

I know I told you how helpful and lovely Paula was to work with in person. But I think it deserves setting down in writing. We could not have asked for a more gracious and helpful host. Rather than issuing a quick and easy “no” at times, she instead looked for “how can we”. She was there for us from the first email to the final closing of the doors. Thank you both for a fabulous kick-off to our new year.

Karin Duval, Leadership Eastside Managing Director

Congrats Paula, and thank you.

I also want to take a moment to thank all of the team that helps to orchestrate our CORE sessions. We have had 100’s of students pass through our doors this summer.  Led by Tracy Phutikanit, various advisors, administrators and supporters helped to organize the effort and make it one of our best recruiting tools.

Thanks to Tracy, the student success team, and the college relations team.

And…

Hello Eric, 

My name is Sachi Horback and I am a dean of instruction at Pierce College. I visited your campus yesterday and met with Rosemary Sutton and two of your deans to discuss the initiative that I have led, a cross institution faculty of color mentorship program. Rosemary has been highly supportive of the initiative and we have several of your faculty registered to attend.

During that time, they also shared more about your Institution, your diversified curriculum, and many of your successes at the institution. It was exciting and encouraging to see how student-focused your leaders are and the tremendous growth that your school is undertaking

Thanks to the Student Learning team.

And finally, thanks to Sandy Nelson and the entire I.S. team. Sunday’s power outage caused us far more damage than we normally see, meaning the team spent all night and several days trying to restore things for us.  We’ve come to know that this will happen several times a year, but it’s nice to know that there are skilled folks behind the scenes.

The outage plus current staffing issues in the I.S. department will have some long term implications. With two vacant positions and two in-training, IS simply doesn’t have the capacity to provide the level of service it customarily provides. Their top 3 priorities remain unchanged: 1) Classroom support (both computer labs and podiums), 2) Campus-wide outages or incidents (such as viruses), and 3) Complete work stoppage (hardware or software failure where no work around is possible and no one else can complete the work).  Information Services staff are shifting duties and hours to maintain current standards of service for these critical requests, resolving them as quickly as possible.  Unfortunately, chances are that other technology problems that affect each of you individually and make it more difficult to do your jobs will take longer (perhaps a lot longer) than normal to resolve. When you have a problem you should still notify IS by submitting your issues or requests through the Help Desk – the staff will work on your problem as soon as they have taken care of the top 3 priorities. The Information Services staff are really under the gun this quarter, I know they will appreciate your patience and understanding when the resolution for non-critical items takes longer than expected. I appreciate it as well.  Thank you to them for all the work they do.

All things considered, people are doing a pretty fantastic job.

Have a great weekend. See you on Monday.

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