President

Western Nebraska Community College - Scottsbluff, NE

The Board of Governors of the Western Community College Area has announced that the search for a new President of Western Nebraska Community College is underway. The Board is committed to conducting an equitable, inclusive, and transparent national search that will attract a strong pool of outstanding candidates. The Board is seeking an experienced visionary educator who has a demonstrated record of success and is passionate about the importance of the community college mission in rural communities.

THE POSITION

The President is the Chief Executive Officer and reports directly to the 11-member elected Board of Governors. The President is responsible, in collaboration with other college leaders, for overseeing all aspects of the organization, including assessing, planning, organizing and evaluating the resources, programs and services of the College to meet the educational needs of the students and communities in its large geographical service area. The President is the academic leaders who is ultimately responsible for ensuring student success and the completion of their goals. The President also represents the College to community groups, business and industry leaders, public school districts, higher education institutions, and governmental agencies and elected officials.

ABOUT THE COLLEGE

Founded in 1926 as an extension of the University of Nebraska, Western Nebraska Community College, became Scotts Bluff County College before it was renamed Nebraska Western College in 1968. Five years later in 1973, Nebraska Western College joined the newly formed Western Technical Community College Area with Western Nebraska Technical College in Sidney, and the Alliance School of Practical Nursing. Eventually, the three institutions combined into a single college and officially became Western Nebraska Community College in 1988. It has grown into a multi-campus college that serves 12 ½ counties in the Nebraska Panhandle and approximately 2,000 students. While located in a rural setting, WNCC enjoys a diverse student body, with Hispanics accounting for 24.5 percent of full-time enrollment as well as international representation from 32 countries.

WNCC believes in its mission statement of assuring learning opportunities for all – enriching lives, invigorating communities, and creating futures - so much that it launched a successful $9.6 million dollar comprehensive campaign in 2015 to raise funds to support student success, workforce success, and community enrichment. In 2017, thanks in part to the generosity of the community, WNCC was able to embark on a $18.5 million dollar major renovation of its Scottsbluff Campus – the College’s main campus. The construction, which includes the addition of a performing arts center, learning commons, and student success center, is expected to be complete in July 2019.

Though many students begin their higher education journey at WNCC through a variety of academic programs, the College also boasts many career and technical education programs to allow students to enter the workforce immediately following completion of his/her program. Featured programs include Nursing, Surgical Technology, Applied Agriculture, Powerline Construction & Maintenance, Welding, and the Aviation Maintenance program, the only Federal Aviation Administration approved program in the state of Nebraska. These programs, along with others, have been instrumental in providing highly skilled workers to help replenish an aging workforce in the regional economy.

Beyond its educational opportunities, WNCC proves to be a strong economic driver in the Nebraska Panhandle, adding $141 million of income to the service area within a year according to a recent independent study.

WNCC is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and is a member of the Nebraska Community College Association (NCCA). With campuses in Alliance, Scottsbluff, and Sidney, WNCC offers more than 70 programs of study and provides a high-quality education to all within the area and those outside of the service area via online education.

ABOUT THE COMMUNITY

WNCC is housed in three campuses throughout the Nebraska Panhandle in Alliance, Scottsbluff, and Sidney – three of the largest cities within the mostly rural region with agriculture making up nearly 12 percent of all jobs in the Panhandle.

The Scottsbluff Campus is located in on the westernmost edge of Nebraska and offers views of historic Oregon Trail landmarks such as the Scotts Bluff National Monument and Chimney Rock. Sidney is nestled in the southern tier of the Panhandle, while Alliance is the northern-most campus. Nebraska’s Panhandle is an outdoor playground where hiking, biking, golfing, and fishing abound. Each city is a two to three hour drive from Denver International Airport (DIA) and Rapid City, South Dakota.

QUALIFICATIONS

  1. Earned master’s degree from an accredited institution (doctorate preferred)
  2. Significant Executive Level experience in higher education (community college preferred)
  3. Administrative experience in progressively senior positions with supervisory and decision-making responsibilities
  4. Demonstrated understanding of the teaching and learning process leading to student success

 

CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES

In addition to the multiple roles and responsibilities of all excellent presidents in a rural multi-site college, the new President of Western Nebraska Community College must be able to:

  1. Provide leadership, inspiration and support to college staff and faculty that results in innovative program excellence and leads to student success and completion
  2. Identify and implement strategies that increase enrollment and retention including offering programs that are competitive and attract students within and outside of the College’s service area
  3. Successfully acquire, allocate, and manage the College’s fiscal resources and generate alternative sources of new revenue
  4. Guide the College successfully through the re-accreditation process and appropriate responses to the Higher Learning Commission’s recommendations in the coming year
  5. Create an inclusive and supportive environment where all persons are treated respectfully, differences are heard and expressed through civil discourse, and the College is unified around its core mission and values
  6. Support the professional development of all staff and hold everyone accountable for collegiality, participatory governance and professional behavior that creates a positive campus climate
  7. Contribute to regional economic development by understanding and responding to local business and industry workforce development needs through new and/or expanded Career and Technical Education programs
  8. Build partnerships with the external community, including educational institutions, business and industry, non-profits and governmental agencies that contribute to students’ success
  9. Participate actively in communities throughout the College’s service area to enhance awareness and appreciation of the College’s offerings and value
  10. Advocate passionately and effectively for the College at the local, state and national levels
  11. Appreciate and build upon the unique characteristics of a rural college serving a large geographical area
  12. Develop positive working relationships with a governing board and provide leadership that results in a cohesive team working together to achieve the mission of the College

IDEAL CHARACTERISTICS

As a strong leader on campus and in the community, the President will draw upon the following characteristics related to these areas of leadership:

Mission

  • Committed to all components of the comprehensive community college mission
  • Champion of innovative teaching and learning
  • Knows strategies to achieve Student Success
  • Supportive of nontraditional pedagogy for adult learners
  • Understands the value of diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Supportive of professional development for all employees
  • Familiar with the challenges of serving students throughout a large geographical area
  • Knowledgeable of good management operations throughout the College
  • Highly experienced with fiscal, human resources, and facilities issues

Decision-making

  • Known for good judgement
  • Forward-looking thinker
  • Creative problem-solver
  • Collaborative and firm
  • Able to make timely decisions

Interpersonal Skills

  • Excellent communicator and listener
  • Respectful of all persons
  • Capable of working with and unifying people with different perspectives
  • Mediator and adept at conflict resolution
  • Politically savvy
  • Enjoys meeting and interacting with people on campus and in the community
  • Eager to become familiar with the College and community culture
  • Willing to make a personal and professional commitment to the College and community

Personal Attributes

  • Trustworthy
  • Visible, accessible and approachable
  • Open and transparent
  • Ethical, fair and operates with integrity
  • Strong, courageous and resilient
  • Calm under stress
  • Compassionate and caring
  • Sense of humor when most needed


Posted On: Tuesday, July 2, 2019



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