Good afternoon, Chancellor, Honorable Trustees, colleagues, ladies and gentleman.
Thank you, Chancellor Maldonado and Vice Chancellor Beatty for attending all—every one—of the pre-semester meetings for both full-time and adjunct faculty. That kind of visibility and engagement is crucial for effective team-building.
Thank you, Trustee Sane, for approaching the Senate and visiting with us earlier this month. Faculty value dialogue. In that vein, the Faculty Senate invites all of you to our primary fund-raising event, the Bedichek-Orman Auction—to be held on the evening of October 14 at our West Loop Campus. Theme—an evening in Vegas. (These funds support adjunct faculty professional development)
I am both honored and humbled to serve as this year’s primary Faculty Senate representative to this body. Many Past Presidents have informed me that serving as Faculty Senate President was the most fulfilling professional experience of their careers. I have the great honor of presiding in the first year of our post-transformation senate configuration. In the past, delegates represented geographical areas; now they represent their program areas. This distribution has resulted in our most diverse delegation, including dedicated positions for our adjunct colleagues.
As preparation for my service this year, I have had the opportunity to attend the SACSCOC, Achieving the Dream, and the League of Innovation conferences. Those events have underscored for me the significance of HCC’s shared mission for our college—putting students and their success at the heart of everything we do. While the 20th century conversation about higher education focused primarily on access, the 21st century conversation foregrounds student success. I am excited that, under the leadership of our Chancellor and our Vice Chancellor for Instructional Services, we have fully engaged the most pressing 21st century endeavor. Through our growing emphasis on evidence-based decision-making and our emerging inquiry of success data (begun on Instructional Day), we are moving toward fulfilling the promise of community college education—with an eye toward social justice and inclusive excellence. Our enrollment is up; however, I believe the vital conversation we have just begun about student success and completion is … timely and places us well to lead our peer institutions.
When I was 18, I was accepted into Baylor University, but due to changes circumstances, I attended McClennan County Community College before transferring to Baylor for the rest of my undergraduate education. When I walked into McClennan County CC, I was provided a solid list of courses and a schedule so that when I transferred, I lost none—not one—credit. I benefitted from Guided Pathways before they were called that, and I am proud that our institution is transforming in that area. Once again, this type of bold systemic change places us well to lead our peer institutions.
We in the Faculty Senate remain committed to shared governance and to our students’ success. We look forward to continuing our collective efforts, partnering with administration and supported by you, to sustain academic rigor so that our students who complete their programs acquire the critical/creative/innovative thinking and skills they need to lead rewarding lives.
If you will indulge me, I would like to officially communicate the statement of appreciation eloquently crafted by David Wilcox, our Co-Chair of Compensation, Workload, and Benefits, Past President of the Faculty Senate, and Director of the Honor College at Central.
HCC Faculty Senate
Compensation, Workload and Benefits Committee
August 19, 2016
Historically, HCC administrations and boards of trustees generally have supported the idea of improving faculty compensation to levels commensurate with the market.
Once or twice in our College’s history, past administrations have even offered to improve faculty salaries over a three-year period in order to achieve this desired result. Yet never has a three-year plan been fully implemented. The second and third year implementations simply have not happened. The Administrative reasoning cited, at one point, was a down turn in enrollment; at another, the sudden loss of Texas State funding; at another, an economic downturn. As a result, promises were broken, compensation to market levels has never been achieved, and faculty have been the poorer for it.
It is important, I believe, to impart lavish praise on the current Administration and Board of Trustees for working over the past two years to implement a three-year plan to bring faculty compensation to levels commensurate with the market. Therefore, on behalf of the Faculty Senate Compensation, Workload and Benefits Committee, the Faculty Senate, and, indeed, the HCC Faculty as a whole, I wish to thank Chancellor Maldonado, Senior Vice Chancellor Zamora and the HCC Board of Trustees for their forthrightness, fortitude and forward-thinking in completing the second phase of a three-phase faculty salary increase. This is an unprecedented and historic development which all faculty should remember and for which we are most appreciative.
[signed] David Wilcox, Co-Chair
Compensation, Workload and Benefits Committee
We note that this is the first time that the Board and Administration have provided salary increases for both full-time and part-time faculty. Thank you.