At 11:00am on 11/12/19 at the Scott North Campus of Wake Technical Community College, I attended the Planning for success in the multigenerational academic workplace presented by Dr. Mark Taylor of Taylor Programs.
Today’s live and on-line classes can be a mix of students from at least three generational cohorts; more mature Baby Boomers, re-careering Generation Xers, and our traditionally aged, digital Generation NeXters. With wildly varying past experiences, academic expectations and learning goals, it can be challenging for faculty to offer each cohort their most effective learning environment and activities. This program describes the traits, learning preferences and needs of each group, and offers a model of instruction proven to help all learners be successful.
How do you get to be a member of a generational cohort: you’re born and raised in the certain time. Socialized with culturally influenced perspectives from the at time. its called pre-evaluative learning. Its called early “programming”. we cannot judge people based on the time of their raising. its not anyone’s fault they’re like they are.
Its not their fault to be that way, it is their opportunity to be the way they want to be.
Generational understanding is not a stereotype, it doesn’t describe everyone and may not describe you. It is just a starting place for understanding. How does those who are attracted to education fits the profile.
If the baby boom after world war 2 went on, this’d be robust. in the 60s and 70s people didnt have to have kids to be families, and women didn’t have to just be a housewife.
As boomers retire, the leadership positions will open up, but there are not enough generation X people to fill those spaces. Boomers and NeXt will get along.
Traditionals like duty, discipline, sobriety, sacrifice, delay of gratification, thrift. They are not here to have a great time, they are here to do what they’re supposed to do.
Boomers go the other way. 75% had a mom at home. most kids outside playing. If you were in the house, “Go outside and play” was the mission statement. The center of the community moved from the church to the school. From belief to reason- from faith to reason and data. Choices are made from reason and data. Boomers are social, realational, talking just to talk to someone. WIll talk to someone who is not running away from them faster than they can run after them. Boomers are conflict averse, as they have befriended their co-workers. They are mission/Purpose people, moving to change the world. These ideals are blurring with life stages- they are getting less social, do not witsh to be troubled with people. It happens as you get older.
Gen X women were told having kids will mess you up. Women would not get hired if getting pregnant. Exorcist, firestarter, omen, damian, carrie, children of the corn, chucky. Kids were trouble. Growing up was interesting and challenging. 75% of Xers had latchkey houses. Xers want to work alone. They do best on their own, figure things out on their own through experimentation. They will often want to make changes, but want to do things on their own. They are skeptical, cautious. Why should I disclose intrusive questions. They are independent self-sufficient. More pragmatic, task oriented people. Tasks are more important than mission level work. Boomers work to change the world, Xers have to work somewhere. Xers make their children scared. THey are scrappy, tough, adaptable. You like the workplace, expecially heavy lifting. Blunt, direct communications. If you are less interested in relationships, you can be blunt, and relevance and efficiency are important. Culture moved from school to the mall. Commerce is important, what are people’s agenda? every interaction has a reason in their mind
Boomers are changing the world, Xers are a whole different drug. Dominating/independent, untrusting/independent are running most businesses together. Families became small baby-worshiping cults focused on the nuclear family. Women are being convinced to retire early and leave work-oriented to family-oriented is strong.
NeXt they are the wanted, precious, protected, perfected child. They are direct, demanding, don’t bother me style. They need direct criticism, just delicately. Child centric family. Most families 75% are really child-centric family. As parents, we are the problem.
Self-Esteem Parenting Model
People used to parent how they were parented. Since the Boomers, parenting is a reaction to the previous parents. Parents now parent like the parents they wanted to have. Helping kids feel good about themselves became the mission. Making them feeling good about themselves was more important than trying or actually doing. Less critical households bring lots of praise. They are less distant, more close and involved. Less hitting and more hugging are involved. Parents are seen less as authorities and more friends, they are in service to the kids. They are more like friends, and peers. As soon as you tell them they’re “good enough” they stop trying.
Disconnecting the praise/reward from talent/effort. Unwillingness to offer or allow critical/corrective feedback. Which can lead to: Them linking themselves and assuming they can do things they haven’t tried, overrating thier own skills, underrating necssary effort for success, entitlement for outcomes, sensitivity/defensiveness to criticism, externality, responsibility issues. These become apparent in the classroom and in the workplace.
NeXters are really great people
generally positive /confident/optimistic, usually very friendly, fewer family issues, like and admire their parents. They should be a rebellious, break with their parents, but there is really nothing to rebel against.
Often they will rebel against the non-objective measures. “why did you tell me I’m a good singer”. “I;m in college and its killing me! Why’d you do my homework in high school?”
They are expressive/direct/honest. They are enthusiastic. Are people cool or enthusiastic? Xers are cool, because they don’t want to give anything away. NeXters are super excited. They like to interact / very social and ready to interact with people who aren’t there via phone. Earlier generations didn’t have these methods, so we had to connect.
Culture has moved to the internet. Xers are upset that the internet is trying to sell you something. NeXters have come to expect it. NeXters are comfortable with and value diversity. NeXters expect to help the world through their work. How will success in your class help them change the world?
- General friendliness from everyone
- Lots of JIT assistance
- Concern for their well being
- Options & Flexibility
- Forgiveness expected rapidly
- Lots of praise and thanks
- realistic appraisals of their abilities
- Engagement and motivations to increase time and effort
- clear identification of the benefits and value of learning
- clear message that learning and success are up to them.
At 9:30am on 11/12/19 at the Scott North Campus of Wake Technical Community College, I attended the Opening General Session: From Teaching to Learning: A Best Practices Instructional Model presented by Dr. Mark Taylor of Taylor Programs.
Opening General Session: From Teaching to Learning: A Best Practices Instructional Model
Dr. Taylor is dedicated to helping faculty and staff better understand and improve their skills in working with students for learning, development, persistence and workplace readiness. While he makes his literature available and offer links to other resources, he feels he is most effective when offering programs and workshops at schools and conferences. He has visited community and technical colleges, universities, private and professional schools from Massachusetts to California, Minnesota to Texas, and in Canada, as well as presenting at conferences across the country and in Australia, Canada, Ireland and Denmark.
This workshop intends to help faculty understand and transition to a researched, informed, best practices model of teaching and learning designed to help students more effectively reach learning outcomes across a range of cognitive and affective domains, especially around higher order reasoning skills. Methods to increase student activity, engagement, investment, responsibility for their own learning and ownership of desired class outcomes will be discussed, described, and demonstrated. The focus on improving persistence and workplace readiness, as well as learning will be paramount to this presentation.
Our presentation will be a summation of a full-day presentation. It will be the best lecture on not giving lectures that we may ever hear. Milenials initial press was so wrong. Current Millenials are entitled and teaching is our responsibility while learning is not their responsibility.
The Generation NeXt writings have been very well received by people. They might be worth reading.
Many millenials graduates find that school is hard, and some need 8 months to sit and recover. Children who grow up being told they’re important only want to work for companies that say that they are important, and changing the world.
His latest pieces on pedagogy of milennial theories and practices constitute a single idea but was broken into 3 pieces to be effective.
What is Our Place?
Community college is required to the ecosystem of education. We are the statue of liberty of education: give us the poor, academically weak or unready, your first generation, your EFL & ESL… we will meet them and help them to achieve.
- Access to higher education
- open admissions / welcoming to all / affordable
- this place or no place
- High expectations / academic rigor
- comparable academic standards
- workplace readiness
- support / nurturing environment
- They need to hear it. They need to know it
- They need services that meet their needs
- Then need people who care about their needs
Colleges are structured to provide instructions. They should not be. They should be structured to bring about learning. we need to switch our thinking from a focus on teaching to a focus on learning. Its less about us, and more about the students
College teaching is the strangest profession. We train people to do so many different tasks, but then we ask some of them to teach what they have learned. When hired, we’re often asked to “give us a show”. We do what we’re not trained to do. we do what teaching looked like when they were taught. Faculty people are folks of good will who want students to learn, and doing their best to bring about that learning.
We are not discussing what most classes do. MOst classes are an active teacher talking to a passive student. WHo does the work and learns the material? the faculty person. It is not a traditional “faith-based instruction”, but instead do what research tells us works.
If a doctor said: “You have the flu, and I’m gonna bleed ya!” we’d want to know if that’s really the most effective way to solve it. In higher ed, the most effective instruction is happening in Community colleges. Because we care and act passionately. lowest learning comes from research-based institutions, because best teachers are researching.
Most learning is just regurgitation. We need students who do more reasoning and less remembering.
“Whoever Does The Work, Does The Learning”
Teaching is not delivery or transfer. we cannot put learning in the head, but in fact we can only give it to students. We must direct, help, and motivate students to do the hard, cognitive work of their own learning. If improves responsibility, agency, efficacy.
Millenials feel its our job to teach them, and that its not their job to learn. Learning is their job. They develop the traits from recipient to active learner. From extrinsic learner to intrinsic learning.
vocational education is so skills based that youre probably putting the responsibility on the student already. However, the learning and knowledge portion should enjoy as much informative learning.
- Learning based on student activity / Engagement. What work or activity did you do to come to class today?
- Efforts to develop student investment.
- Everything is in the service of higher level outcomes. I teach beyond the context of what you need to do a single skill
- Learning should look like the outcome.
- Non-negotiable compliance. Everybody plays, opting out is not a n option or choice. there are academic expectations.
- Leverage a range of tools to keep learning active and up to date.
Some teachers say that teaching is not a priority. some classes are actively resisting new teaching and methods.
Pedagogy of Formation
takeaway knowledge information (remembering understanding)
skills should be improved or professional (apply, analyze, evaluate)
values should be achieved and held dear (producing quality protfolio-level work, self-worth, caring about these and willing to do this)
What the workplace wants
Looking at what workplaces want/need. You won’t see remember on here anywhere. Hart research for aacu 2016. All items wanted are higher order thinking.
- critical thinking and analytical reasonsing
- apply knolwedge and skill to real work provlems
- effective oral communication
- work effectively in teams
- communicate effectively in writing…
Why Best Practices?
- lasting remembering.
- skills development
- reasoning evluation and critical thinking
- increases student persistence
- from static to growth mindset
NeXT Pedagogy for today’s learners
- improve students future orientation
- Don’t talk to students; talk to the professional they aspire to become
- identify class goals/link to students’ goals
- help student understand the why/benefits fo the course
- affective engagement/investments/motivation
- menu of benefits. Write what you want to do for a living. Find 3 items that are important to you. add 1 that isn’t on the list. Turn to your neighbor, find out what you agree on, and come to an agreement. They will talk themselves into valuing your class.
- Come to the understanding of cognizance dissonance. Activity in learning allows our students to value the course and believe more.
- improve student understanding of class expectations
- Teach each student how to be effective, self-responsive learning
- Move the learning out of class
- I cannot do the work for you, but I will help you to do the work and learn the skills so that you succeed.
- Any reading or remembering component can be moved out of the classroom. Any video can be created and given to students
- The easiest way to get started is to just get started.
- Create the necessity of preparing for and attending class
- student must prepare for my class
- students are mostly prepared
- students can succeed without preparation
- I check homework for completion
Ensuring preparation and attendance
Check student’s preparation before each class. Check materials at the door, give points for preparation.
Did you know WHAT to do? Are you ABLE to do it? are you WILLING to do what it takes to be successful?
Email absent students. Anything we can do to make you successful in the classroom?
When you get to class, get them working. Guide students to the hard work of their own learning. They need to actively learn, apply analyze and evaluate, and then cover affective worthy choices. Practice effectively, and demonstrate that activity and/or procedure. They will have more understanding, especially if they see how it will effect them in the future.
At 8:00am on 11/12/19 at the Scott North Campus of Wake Technical Community College, I attended the Faculty Association Breakfast and Business Meeting presented by Kim Atkinson, Faculty Senate President and Medical Office Administration instructor, and President-Elect Brad Swearingen Associate Professor of SGD. Co-presented by Debbie Manness and John Etheridge.
As a faculty senate member, I attended this meeting to keep abreast of the topics of current interest. I am recovering from my auto collision on 10/17 and sitting through sessions with broken ribs may be an issue.
Faculty Association has been working on:
- PD hours, reducing the yearly requirement from 30hrs to 20hrs mandatory.
- Pay survey: faculty association pay >> Posts >> see feedback there
- Dr. Scott Ralls, President of Wake Tech Community College, came to the faculty association meeting to listen to concerns. Minutes will be posted soon
- Calendar issues abound. Go to posts >?? calendar guidelines. This will be helpful to getting faculty on board.
- Summer 2020 is published, and should be out to faculty soon
- WE requested
- Faculty calendar completed 1 year in advance to plan vacations. Faculty has no vacation
- We requested to know who finalizes the calendar
- improve accuracy of labeling the calendar.
- 12 month faculty would like longer breaks in semesters
- What is the clarification of the need of faculty after final exams. There is a hesitancy on the top level to give Deans the power to decide.
- Please stay current on faculty association actions and pushes, cares and concerns.
Seats will be open in February. Seanate seats are given for 2-year terms. Open officer seats will be filled by senators with at least 1 term experience. Elections will be held in April with the results announced in may. Contact Lorri Wiliford with questions
Teaching and Learning Fund
Guidelines and applications are available on the faculty website. Deadline is April 1, 2020. It is mainly used for reimbursement of professional development. Aisha Eskandari can be contacted if there are questions
Debbie and John: the NCCCFA Report
Debbie Manness, VP internal for the NCCCFA began with a solid message: Represent your department and division in the faculty senate. Encourage all faculty to visit, join, and take part. You can enjoy meetings via teams, etc. Debbie Manness has been a faculty association member for 20 years, and now she is a state level participant.
Faculty across the state are having trouble traveling. Our Wake Tech PD Conference is now open to any teacher with PD requests. This will be an ongoing PD Conference ability. The NCCCFA handouts are available, giving more opportunities and resources focused on teaching excellence and student success.
NCCCFA President’s Report
John Etheridge, President of the NCCCFA spoke with his report. There has been a large turnover since the NCCCFA was almost shut down last year. First few months were about getting people onboard and ensuring that the cart is back on the road, monetarily, administratively, etc.
We’d like to talk about efficient money use over time.
Faculty Salaries are not addressed into its “legislative priority”. It is up to the discretion of the college president how much you will get paid.
“What is the NCCCFA doing about salaries?” You are not a state employee, you are a college employee, and you will get paid based on the presidents choice. the 2019 workforce development legislative agenda has several bullet points (talking points). They are not currently addressed.
We would like lawmakers to ask the NCCCFA when addressing concerns for college faculties.
“What about Dues?” We’d like dues to be passed back to teachers through a reimbursement process similar to the faculty association’s current set. We’re also hoping to include monies for online PD availability to faculty across the state.
We can we do better, and how can faculty get involved?
First, get involved. We had a good reputation in the past, and we’d like to leverage that again. we’d like to gain visibility by being present in the legislature. We need folks in committees, we need people involved in the NCCCFA so that officer roles will get filled.
Get in touch with your legislator. They will listen to constituents over faceless organizations. Talk about what is going on in the college. School teachers have vast resources, with paid people who only work for better deals. The NCCCFA president has a single courses load reduction, and no other officers have any.
“Can we get a copy of the 2019 Workforce Legislative Agenda?” Yes, we’ll put it on the Faculty Association website.
On 4/17/19 at 11:00am, I attended the Wake Technical Community College Spring Professional Development Conference Session: Be A Digital Disruptor with FFC and IT Services. This was presented by Ryan Schwiebert, Benita Budd, Neal Stidham, Tracy Naleway, and Monique Williamson of Wake Technical Community College
Be A Digital Disruptor with FFC and IT Services
We began with a brief educational game getting to know one another in the group and finding the close connections with teaching and campuses. it was pretty fun, but there were several of us in here, so it took a minute.
Technology has significantly changed the way we interact with our world!
Students interact differently!
- U.S. smartphone users grew to more than 230 million in 2018 (that is about 70% of the population) (Statista)
- 20% of households with an annual income less than $30k have smartphones without any other type of broadband. (Pew Research)
- Wake County has set a goal to increase the availability affordable high-speed connectivity county wide. (County Commissioners)
- Ubiquitous campus wi-fi connectivity is EXPECTED by students! (Based on student surveys)
Student technology expectations have increased
- Every student in Wake County Public Schools is provided a computer for course work.
- Students want to interact and collaborate through technology tools
- Students are accustomed to receiving constant feedback. 24/7!
We have take some steps to address growing expectations:
- Wake Tech Online is the largest “campus” with 9,867 students in spring 2017 (8,123 students enrolled at Main Campus)
- We have several programs completely online Associate 16, Diploma 3, and Certificate 76
- We have also improved connectivity on campus.
This transformative technology movement is known as DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION
To be successful, our institution must begin evaluating our business processes and changing/adapting them to the digital world.
DISRUPTION IS POSSIBLE: If we do not meet this challenge, others will.
Why is this important?
Consider other industries that have changed:
- Internet->Travel Agents
- Napster->Music Industry
- Amazon-> Retail Industry
- Netflix -> Video Rentals
- Streaming Services -> Broadcast Television
- Taxi -> Uber (The largest taxi service in the world/owns no vehicles)
- Hotel -> AirBNB (The largest lodging service/owns no real estate)
- Google introduced cloud training certificate programs – for programmers and anyone interested
- Amazon’s released ‘Machine Learning University’ – available to all developers
- Gartner identified Higher Education as a growth sector for technology usage.
The first to successfully achieve this will become market leaders.
Today we are hear to explore how might we adapt to ensure our industry is not disrupted.
Lets explore the benefits of digital transformation
- Competition for students has increased in Higher Ed. If we don’t attract students, we will see declining enrollments.
- For profit institutions have increased dramatically.
- We compete with other public institutions.
- It has become difficult to maintain enrollment growth.
- Public funding for higher education is shrinking.
- We are continually asked to do more with less.
- WE should entice the students to come
Better Student Experience
- The customer experience is often stressed in business/time for Higher Ed. to embrace
- Student needs and expectations should be a priority
- Students have a lot of choices!
- A new focus on future employability.
Technology Works Together
- Technology and college processes should work together seamlessly.
- We should not expect the student to conform to an antiquated process.
- Technology should be easily accessed and interacted with
This was adapted from an article recently published by Educause. Have a look at this article and several others they have. read, attend online seminars and embrace this.
Establishing a digital foundation
- Pilot with interactive displays in the classrooms (mostly south campus, a few at North). THis iss a collaboration with faculty, staff and ITS
- Conference Room Upgrades. WE are lagging behind. Through teams and conferences we shouldn’t have to campus travel.
- Wi-fi Upgrades. We moved away from old systems to Arube systems and we monitor this. Often this is when students congregate. we are asking students to spread out, but we’re looking to upgrade and work with this. We are looking to update to outdoors and parking locations. Once you’re connected on campus, we’d like you to continue to be connected.
- New network infrastructure. We’ve upgraded on all campuses, and are upgrading the fibre connections. We have an achilles heel- if southern campus is down, all campuses are down. RTP is redundant and independent. Soon others will also be seperated. If a fibre should be separated, all will be fine
- New network infrastructure. We’re focusing more on efficiency and optimization: In the traditional mode, processes should be agile. if the IT items do not work all the time, we have problems. we’re experimenting and dealing with uncertainty. This will mean an acceptance of failure but still have standards.
The future growth of Wake Tech depends on our ability to adapt.
Now is the time to explore new ways of using technology.
- We are looking to faculty to help identify those opportunities
Experimentation allows us to determine new and effective ways of teaching
- This supports the applied benchmarking concept of continual improvement.
Technology can provide alternative learning methods
- We need to test the effectiveness of these methods to see if they should be implemented collegewide.
Proper use of technology will put students at the center of the learning process.
- Students are the reason we are here!
By enhancing faculty teaching methods, learning can be improved.
- Faculty expertise is pivotal to ensuring success.
We have spent the past 3 years establishing our foundation
- Think Maslow’s hierarchy for technology
- Ryan’s hierarchy of technology needs!
- Here are some of the highlights!
- Currently piloting interactive displays for classroom and meeting use.
- A standard will be developed based on faculty and staff feedback.
Conference Room Upgrades
- Our goal is to simplify these spaces to make it easier for everyone to use.
- Providing more tools for collaboration/communication
- Also implementing Microsoft Teams for web meetings
- Hoping to reduce campus travel.
- Wireless access was a hot button issue for students.
- We completed the upgrade college wide
- We are continually adding additional access points.
- Plans are underway to add wi-fi connectivity to outside spaces
New Network Infrastructure
- We have redesigned our network infrastructure to reduce single points of failure
- The intent is to increase resiliency and redundancy
- Each campus will be independently connected to the Internet
- We will also be upgrading fiber between buildings and upgrading old wiring.
Our challenge is to continue operations as we innovate and experiment!
In a traditional mode:
- Rigid processes
- More governance
- Low failure acceptance
In contrast innovation requires an agile mode:
- High acceptance of failure
- Some governance
- Open Processes
To address this at Wake Tech, ITS has adopted a Bi-Modal IT leadership structure.
- Mode 1 is the operational portion.
- Mode 2 is the strategy and innovation.
The two must still work together.
- New innovations are tested in an agile mode.
- If accepted/successful they are eventually shifted to traditional operation.
Collaboration is at the cornerstone of any great organization.
So, lets work together to improve technology adoption college wide!
ITS will serve as
- your partner and technology expert
Faculty and staff input and involvement is welcome
- IT needs you to be our partner
- serve as classroom and teaching experts.
We want to be a technology leader in higher education. IT will focus on technology solutions that benefit student learning. IT needs a seat at the table, early and often.
Think of ITS when working on new ideas!
As you can see, a lot of work as gone into preparing for our digital transformation journey. Now that the foundation has been established, we are ready to explore new technology opportunities in the classroom. We need your input because the possibilities are endless!
Poll Title: What tools do you prefer to use when teaching online or in the classroom? You can vote on the preferences submitted.
Poll answers were as follows:
- Cellphones – 4 (looking up words, fact checking, who’s going to look this up?)
- teams – 3 (videos, small groups, want to use this…)
- ipads – 3 (apple TV and ipad instead of flipping back and forth- crossplatform presenations- you could eliminate screens to give everyone a device)
- ppt – 3
- remind.com – 2
- kahoot – 2
- flipgrid – 2
- tablets in lab
Poll Title: What benefits will faculty gain from digital transformation at Wake Tech?
Poll Answers were as follows:
- online lecture and video for online classes
Teams is a collaboration tool. Most people use it extensively. Its a collaboration tool like skype and video recording. Zoom is very similar. Teams uses filesharing as well. Is this like slack? it is like slack, but does more.
The technology has come a long way. Some classroom have it. Its a Wake Tech PC back there. You’ll see this more
You can take student screens, interact with single or multiple students in classes, and will be coming in the future.
Lynda.com is a flood of information and easy to follow. This has good PD credits opportunities and students also have access to this
Gartner.com is another great site from http://go.waketech.edu. They are unbiased information sources. This takes you behind the firewall, and gives you access to all the data. This is great for research, and its available to students as well.
As you can see, a lot of work as gone into preparing for our digital transformation journey. Now that the foundation has been established, we are ready to explore new technology opportunities in the classroom. We need your input because the possibilities are endless!
Question and Answer Section
Q: labs in the class need assistance sharing information. How can he share data in the class?
A: Off the top of Tracey’s head- the answer will be teams. Add in items on teams and display that using teams.
Our Next Mission
Recruit other agents to room 149, and test out the materials. walk through some of the tools and items you’ve seen here. The first place winner won a small prize. A second prize was given out to a participant who offered to hold their fee to the fire.
I think this went along very well, and everybody seemed engaged. Well done!
On 4/17/19 at 8:00am, I attended the Wake Technical Community College Spring Professional Development Conference Session: Faculty Association Breakfast Meeting. This was co-presented by Kathrynne Paul and Kimberly Atkinson of Wake Technical Community College
Faculty Association Breakfast Meeting
Know your senators
Request initiative on budget items
Collaborative Council rundown with Debbie Manness. Will students see attendance, how will we know of new initiatives? Starfish is going away?
The council is a new thing, and everyone was unsure how to proceed. students and association waiting for admin to proceed, and admin waiting for students and faculty to proceed. You can send questions on go portal
Does the college faculty want january PD day on January 2nd, 2020 to be a PD day, or a break day. PD Day may be taken away and another may be added in May. No negative impact will happen.
Question: 2 days added to schedule for May which are originally set as break days. Some people are extremely upset at lost break days which were set as mandatory summer days. Some people only found out 2 weeks ago, and now they are in breach of contract. The new days are removed from 12 month faculty. What can individuals do?
It was brought to our attention that Dr. Green and VP Dietrich had headed up these changes. The original plan was 8-10 days removed, and we’ve been able to reduce this to only 2 days removed. How did the calendar committee not know? This should come down from the system office. The calendar committee was unaware of the situation. While this doesn’t answer the question, you should talk with your immediate supervisors such as department heads and deans. It is a problem as break days are not marked on the calendar directly.
On 4/17/19 at 8:35am, I attended the Wake Technical Community College Spring Professional Development Conference Session: Faculty Association Breakfast Meeting. This was co-presented by Kathrynne Paul and Kimberly Atkinson of Wake Technical Community College
A Legacy of EPIC Success in Online Education
SPARK Initiative intro. Wake Tech continues to play a role in economic development in the community. Billions realized in local economy come from our workforce, and that comes from our students, and that credit belongs to the teachers.
Cameron, a student success
Student Success story talked about Heating and HVAC. Getting a 3.7GPA when they had done less well in high school. He gave a great shout out to the ILC on Main campus helping with papers. He was very thankful to the Pathway program, helping him as a mentor and becoming a “people person”. He started as an employee, but wanted to move into a business ownership. He’s managed NC Express Heating and Cooling for some time and growing his business in a great way.
Tim Guffy, a student success story
First responder with the Raleigh fire department, and part of a 2+2 program, graduating last year. Fire Protection Technology had a ton of networking and comforting person-to-person contact experience. This made his ability to move on in his education and settle in the career goal of his choice.
Presentations were given to Cameron and Tim, small tokens of our esteem from the Professional Development committee as well as certificates of appreciation.
Jaqueline Popp presented as the assessment team lead about EPIC. After a 5-year initiative, how can you measure success? We were finalists in the Bellwether Award, and several team members were recognized. It was a great recognition. Over 30,000 attempted, 95% of students passed, and 89% noted that they felt their skills have increased. 630+ faculty and staff have been certified online, 44+ have passed a peer review process, 39+ have been certified as mentors, and 29+ have achieved Master Certification.
We haven’t seen the full effect yet. WE’ll see more success as time goes on. It is difficult to see full success as not all classes have been converted to EPIC readiness. This is mainly a concern in the early classes and gateway courses. There are reports written for every year, and they should be viewed if interested in how comparisons are made and observed. Most student responses are positive. Faculty complained about numerous surveys and there was survey fatigue which contributed to lesser completions as time went on so they’ve stopped doing that.
There were external reviewers and external takers of the EPIC materials. EPIC will continue, and a sustainability plan is in development. Until we’ve fully implemented, look to see changes and adjustments as time goes on. The EPIC team will be shutting down shortly. One thing EPIC has done is given our students some consistent habits. Students struggle with time management, and EPIC assists with that.
Townhall Session with Dr. Ralls
Marsha McCoy, communications faculty and member of ToastMasters, as well as her TED Talk.
Ralls is our newest president, previous president of NOVA. President of Craven Community College. Created a new technology division, grew their cybersecurity program and built the first cloud computing degree program with Amazon. He was a former president of NC Community College System Office. He has numerous awards, as well as a recipient of the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, NC highest civilian award.
Q: Are community colleges still a good deal in the first 2 years? Average student carries $10k debt for 2 year colleges, $14K debt standard for Wake Tech students. The average 4-year student carries $28K in debt.
A: Be wary of statistics and averages. Geography majors had the largest average salaries. He graduated with Michael Jordan, a geography major. Be proud, diligent, and fight for our students. In the last 10 years, student debt has doubled. Students carry more debt than years before. They carry student debt instead of housing debt. Millenials are not buying houses. North Carolina has in its constitution that higher education should be as free as possible. Ralls is an advocate of debt-free higher education. Averages for tuition allows a student to work 10 hours a week at minimum wage and still pay for their education.
Q:What impactful changes should we see under your leadership in the short run and long run
A: In the past, he was impacted by technology. People struggle with technology because the big dogs have to mark their territory. As a president, he should not immediately leave a mark or make a change. Rather than implementing change right away, get the best knowledge first so as not to make a mistake. There need to be short term and long term changes. Rather than comment and make mistakes, he wants to get the lay of the land. There are not problems on the whole. But here’s some perspective:
He’s been a collegiate leader for 20 years. He believes in the unique role in upward mobility for students in community colleges. Economic mobility has always been our issue in NC and its still an issue. Money is more of a segmentor instead of an integrator. We should be inclusive and proud of it. We should be proud that we take the top 100% of our students. That’s what people need from us.
To be effective, we have to be very good. No one states that they dream of an associates degree. But 25% of HS students and 10% of adults in the county come through our school to reach their dreams. The best jobs we do is when we identify and clear those paths and assist them on their way to the goals. More will come to our institution than any other in Wake County.
Q: Will we be required to complete annual applied benchmarking under your leadership.
A: One thing he does and enjoys is to pop into offices. He’s heard faculty members tell him that applied benchmarking creates a culture of innovation. The process each year is so sped up that the focus is on the process, not the solution. We should not be defined by process, but on the goals. It may be that 1 year is too rapid. He does not know. He’s only been here 4 days. We should always evaluate a process and ensure that it helps us to the goal and isn’t being done for its own sake
Q: How would you foster research initiatives and innovation?
A: I see research is already in the mix. Without a culture of innovation, you’re dying in education. Research is a byproduct of the culture of innovation. You learn from looking out side the institution, listening where the rubber meets the road. We should all have ideas, and ideas should be disseminated from there. He would not like to break anything and certainly not the culture of innovation
Q: scholarship on campus is here. How can we incorporate this into everyone’s work, and how can a budget be added.
A: I’m going to avoid that question. I am unfamiliar with the project, with the budget, etc. He doesn’t have the info and expertise to answer the question.
Q: What do you see are the college biggest challenges?
A: Usually its financial, but I don’t think that’s the case. More likely, it will be dealing with slowing growth. There has been several years of growth. The county is growing, but its not growing like it was. Growth trends are now pretty flat. That’s a good challenge because its not a major drop. We’re likely heading into stability, and that creates new challenges because we don’t have the money (bad news).
We may need to look to retention to be the answer. We’ll need to pay attention, because colleges are used to naturally growing. Economic circumstances change, and we’ll need to worry about a new definition.
Q: Do you plan on evaluating faculty pay to be commisserate with 4-year pay. Low pay leads to excessive turnover.
A: I think I will be fighting for faculty pay for quite some time. It is not a question of equality. the problem becomes the discrepency with working here and for graduates. when its a bump to walk out as a graduate and receive more than the teacher, that’s a major problem. Faculty don’t want to leave, but they are having their salaries doubled. The challenge isn’t hitting the market rate, just to hit the spouse approval rate. I’d work for you, but I cannot tell my wife how much money I’ll make.
Students need knowledgeable faculty. That’s why faculty pay is important.
Q: Do you see faculty tenure installed here?
A: No. There are certain traditional academic ideas which are bad ideas. There are items which are better sells, such as better salaries. Academic salary for research is important, but it cannot be done well without tenure. You earn tenure by researching and publishing in the first six years. We are not built around those items. Its not in our flavor.
ON the flip side, there is no need to have a culture and climate to feel uncomfortable with Ralls being there. Do the right job for your students and you have no fear.
Q: How does faculty governance fit your vision?
A: Faculty-lead decision making. He didn’t have collective decision making. That was a challenge for them because colleges would threaten not to take course credit? What is important is to have structures to allow groups to get together and make decision.
In the SPARK strategic plan, the AACC report lead with principals to evolve CC from idiosyncratic decision to collective decisions. Defaulting to idiosyncractic decision cause problems. Department chair says that only credits for world history should be allowed will cause problems for students. Decisions should be faculty-lead, not leader-based.
Q: Dr. Ralls, if faculty morale is low, we would like your help finding solutions. Have you had issues like this in the past?
A: He has. Morale is like taking temperature. The numbers mean little or nothing without context. What are the specific issues? Morale changes one day to the next. Organizational climate and culture is important. Does the climate add or subtract to our emotions, opinions, etc. What are the things which are causing the challenges? Are they in or out of control? Sometimes there’s no good way. Some things impact morale in ways which seem little.
Morale is not about how you feel now, but how we are challenged and thrive, feeling good about what we do and how we feel about what we’re doing. He wants to work in a good morale location
Q: what is your place on remote work in the workplace
A: computers give flexibility. With flexibility, as long as we’re meeting the needs of the students, you’re fine. A culture of professionalism means values which are important. If the needs of students are being met, don’t impress him by leaving after he sneaks out the door. We need to police one another for professionalism.
Where this breaks down is by letting one another down. Office hours can be a problem. Rules for everything becomes a problem- rule-driven cultures are not good. Professionalism cultures are best. Small rules are troubling.
For years, there were issues with annual leave for staff. You should only have vacation and leave days which are equal among employees. At the end of the day, auditors had to come in and now laws have had to be put in place. We do a job not because of a rule, but because of our levels of professionalism. Don’t get caught up in rules, but be caught up in professionalism.
Q: Any thoughts on communication
A: He would aspire to a forum 1-2 hours at each campus once per semester, just so he can have dialog and conversation.
Q: How should changes be communicated?
A: student-focused and faculty-lead. Not idiosyncratically. You should have the decisions to teach things the way they are taught best. I will always respect the classroom. I respect the classroom process and he’s a distraction. When looking at student curriculum, each step should be clear and lead you somewhere. If we don’t hit the target, and students transfer, that’s a big problem for them. IF they don’t have job skills in the workplace, that’s a big problem for them.
Q: Faculty staffing model: Adjunct or full-time models? Adjuncts do not have office hours.
A: I don’t intend to change anything about that. The needs of all programs are different. Having a strong cadre of full-time faculty is important. Full-time faculty push the programs forward. It wasn’t about teaching the students in the classroom. We get good value from adjuncts, but that experience is very helpful. We need to pay attention because not all colleges are strong in how they orient adjunct faculty.
Adjuncts are just as much a professor as a full-time professor. How we support adjuncts is very important
Q: How do you feel about certifications for faculty and supporting credentials for faculty?
A: behind it completely. 35% of jobs ask for certifications and licensures. you need to be knowledgeable and tell whether the value is real. You need to tell students and know about it. If we work with certification and pay faculty, we don’t need to offer certifications which do not add value. We have live data letting us know what certifications are helpful.
We are not an elite college. The biggest day for most students is the day they are admitted, not graduation. Walking off stage is nice, but demonstrating what they know is as relevant in the workplace.
Q: How do you feel about a reading day for students and faculty?
A: Not going to answer that. Don’t have the information about those items, what might the unintended consequences be?
Q: Across the nation, Community colleges offer Bachelors degrees. What are your thoughts.
A: I am not against BA degrees if its for the right reasons. For some it has to do with hiring and magnet rates, safety, etc. Is the value provided better from a Comm College and 4-year college. There are rationales, but there have to be reasons. Half states have them, started in Florida. Only 4 states allow this. There is a fight in higher education about who can offer these items and why.
One thing to be careful about in this conversation is not to get caught up in the ghiher education arms race. Its not because of an inferiority complex. Every regional wants to be a flagships school. Every flagship wants to be a harbor school.
Otherwise, we’ll get chopped off at the knees because funders don’t want to cover that, and we’ll be challenged in numerous ways. We should lead not with inferiority, but from grassroots efforts. No one is doing research or policy research. we have the strongest university system in the country and this will always be more challenging for us.
Q: It has been rumored, that in the future faculty will be put in the same category as staff. Staff accrue PTO and faculty do not.
A: Won’t happen because of purely technical reasons. Staff earned leave and faculty do not. What we should do? Don’t know a reason to do this. If there is a rumor, he’d like to hear it. At James Sprunt in a previous college a faculty had earned 20 bonus days. These days were not accepted by Wake Technical Community College. Bonus days are problematic.
On 2/24/19 at 1:15pm, I presented at the North Carolina Community College Fine Arts Conference with the Session Using Real-Life Clients In The Classroom at the Meroney Theater in Salisbury, NC. This was co-presented by Carla Osborne of Wake Technical Community College
Using Real-Life Clients in the Classroom
At this event, we discussed the ability to work with clients in our classrooms, from beginning to end. This process included setting out the fear involved with
you for attending our presentation this afternoon. I’m attaching the videos that were in the presentation with a short description:
Baking and Pastry Arts Introductions
Since the student chefs are on another campus, this was our way of introducing them to the graphic design students:
Client/Media Relations – Summer Session 2017
We have fun in our department and for this video we roped in one of our Networking instructors as the client:
Client/Media Relations – Summer Session 2018
For this video we recruited a theatre student from NCSU to play the part of the client for Beet Box:
Design Apps III
In this short video Julie Evans introduces the rebranding assignment for Joe Van Gogh
And here’s the interview with the owner:
We hope you found a few tips you could implement in your own classes. Please reach out if you have questions or if you would like to share your experiences with working with clients in your classes.