Dr. Kimberly Lowry
March 28, 2017
Greetings community college professionals! I am thrilled to have the honor of serving as the Director of NASPA’s Community Colleges Division (CCD) which serves as a vibrant and engagement home for all community college professionals.
Now more than ever, the work we do at community and technical colleges is of the utmost importance. In the United States, 1,200 community colleges enroll over 10 million students each year - nearly half of the nation’s undergraduates. Yet, fewer than 40% of enrolled students complete an undergraduate degree within six years. This fact has put pressure on community colleges to improve academic and career outcomes for our students. To do so, community colleges must rethink the ways in which we organize programs of study, methods of instruction, and student support services.
As the leading association for the advancement, health, and sustainability of the student affairs profession, NASPA and the Community Colleges Division seek to provide a space for community college professionals to connect with one another while providing scholarship, advocacy, and engagement. Through a variety of professional development opportunities and signature initiatives, we create an avenue for individuals to get involved, network with others, and add tools to their professional toolkit.
As I step into the director role, I must acknowledge our outgoing director, Dr. Quincy Martin III, as well as the past CCD directors who have guided and supported the division and helped get us to where we are today.
Our successes are only possible thanks to the continued dedication from our members.
As a division, we are committed to advocating for the community college on a regional, national, and international level. As such, the CCD has outlined four goals which will guide our work in the coming year.
The CCD Board is a dedicated group of individuals who are committed to achieving the goals outlined above; however, these are not the only individuals who make our work possible. In order to continue to provide innovative and relevant professional development opportunities for all community and technical college professionals, we need your help!
There are innumerable ways to get involved with the CCD and develop your own skills and network. At any time of the year, you can check NASPA’s Volunteer Central for open positions (just look for Community Colleges Division) either on the board or one of our subcommittees. Our team is beginning to develop our 2018 Community Colleges Institute, 2017-2018 Community College Symposium Portfolio, and our online offerings.
If you are at all interested in learning more about the CCD, how to get involved, or have an innovative idea you think we should implement, I encourage you to reach out to your regional representative (found here) or reach out to me directly. As always, I encourage each of you to renew your membership to NASPA or consider joining the association. As my professional home for most of my career, NASPA offers an unparalleled level of professional development and networking opportunities.
Thank you for all you have done and will continue to do. I look forward to engaging with each of you during the coming year.
Dr. Kimberly Lowry
Director, NASPA Community Colleges Division
Opinions expressed in this blog are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of NASPA. If you agree or disagree with the content of this post, we encourage you to dialogue in the comment section below. NASPA reserves the right to remove any blog that is inaccurate or offensive.