Thursday, April 17, 2008

Getting Students Off to a Great Start

Over the past few months more than sixty faculty and staff served on six different design teams to closely examine major administrative systems in need of review that were identified in the College Strategic Plan. Each team was provided a charter that set forth the purpose of researching best practices at other community colleges, examining our existing internal processes, comparing and contrasting the two and then making "thoughtful and daring recommendations". This is the first of six posts that will review the recommendations from each design team.

The recommendations for all groups have been posted on a website where people can review the charters, membership and recommendations for each group as well as a future placeholder where updates will be provided. The information regarding the Student Intake System Design Team can be found here - http://www.mvcc.edu/fcltystaff/involvement/intake.cfm (Click on the recommendations tab and scroll all the way to the bottom to see a summary of their recommendations.)

The task of improving our system for getting students into MVCC from the point of admission to registration can be a daunting and complex effort. However, looking at the recommendations as a whole allows one to take in the recommendations and see that much is possible - but that it will also likely take some time. One of the College's the Intake Design Team visited said they had been on a four-year journey of transforming the way they served students in these functions of admissions, placement testing, advising, financial aid, registration, and payment.

The Process Review Committee and the Executive Committee will be meeting next week to review these recommendations along with the recommendations from the Student Support Design Team. I fully recognize that the exciting recommendations from all six of these Design Teams have created a great deal of optimism for many at the College while simultaneously creating a certain level of anxiety - a natural byproduct of change.

This approach was the best way I could think of to take a comprehensive approach toward creating positive change at the College - to review our major systems all at once and create a context in which change can occur. As the budget revenue projections become more clear in the weeks ahead, the feasibility of many of these recommendations will also become more clear. What's exciting to me is that the recommendations don't offer a series of simple fixes but rather provide a roadmap for potentially transformative change. I appreciate the time and commitment of each member of the Student Intake Design Team for a job well done.

I'd appreciate your thoughts on the recommendations - share them with me at presblog@mvcc.edu.