Archive for the ‘Articles and Essays’ Category

  • Valencia Moves to Become Valencia College

    Tuesday, December 14, 2010

    I want to thank all of you who have taken time over the past year to share your thoughts on Valencia’s…

  • The Passing of a Great Educator: Dr. Charles Millican

    Wednesday, December 1, 2010

    The University of Central Florida’s founding president, Dr. Charles Millican, passed away today. A strong supporter of Valencia during its founding…

  • Welcome to Another Year

    Wednesday, August 25, 2010

    Dear Friends and Colleagues, I’m so pleased to welcome you to a new academic year. For those of us who love…

  • National Spotlight on Florida Community Colleges Offering Bachelor’s Degrees

    Thursday, August 12, 2010

    Inside Higher Ed explores the issue of Florida’s community colleges offering bachelor’s degrees in this article published today.

    Not Just a Foot in the Door
    August 12, 2010

    “Given that there was still demand for these programs, Central Florida wanted Valencia to take on at least two of them. So, if Valencia wins the state board’s approval, it plans to begin offering baccalaureate degrees in engineering technology and radiology imaging. Shugart acknowledged that if his institution did not offer these degrees they probably would not be offered in and around the Orlando area. Still, he is not eager to add any more four-year degrees.

    ‘We would not have done this if [Central Florida] had not approached us,’ Shugart said. ‘We have our hands pretty full already. As long as the need was met elsewhere, we wouldn’t have done this. … At least for now, ‘community’ is our middle name. I’d like to keep it that way.'”

  • College Update: Valencia’s Budget for 2010-2011

    Saturday, June 12, 2010

    by Sandy Shugart
    June 1, 2010

    I have good news to share. First, the legislature is out of session as of a couple of weeks ago – always good news. Second, in spite of ongoing budget challenges due to the recession (next year is expected to be the toughest, and then we’ll see recovery in state revenues), the legislature recognized the extraordinary efforts made by community colleges to preserve access to the flood of new students in recent years and approved a very manageable budget for us. Not generous, but manageable. Third, as of Friday, the deadline for the Governor to veto elements of the budget passed with no action that would adversely affect Valencia. (You may have read in the news how others were not spared the veto…)

  • On Doing Good

    Wednesday, May 26, 2010

    A chapter from the manuscript In the Crucible of Work, authored by Sanford Shugart

    Doing well and doing good are not the same thing. When we go to work, especially when we take on the mantle of leadership – the responsibility to steward an enterprise on behalf of those we serve and those with whom we serve – they have every reason to expect our best. Our best efforts to lead with and toward excellence come with the role we assume as leader, no matter what the purpose of the organization. This is about doing our jobs well. It is a matter of commitment, competence, and performance. But in addition to doing our work well, it is also of vital importance to our work, ourselves, and our organizations that we do good, seeking both ends and means that are, in a word, a blessing to others.

  • College Update: Baccalaureate Degrees and a Possible Name Change

    Tuesday, May 25, 2010

    by Sandy Shugart November 2, 2009 You have often heard me speak of my deep commitment to our partnership with UCF…

  • The Power of Partnership

    Thursday, May 13, 2010

    by Sandy Shugart
    Spring, 2010

    Valencia has always been an eager and effective partner in the community, and October 2009 saw an event that marked a milestone in our long and deep relationship with the University of Central Florida. On October 29, 2009, we “cut the ribbon” on the new University Center on Valencia’s West Campus.

  • Goal Four: Partner with the Community

    Strategic Planning

    Monday, March 15, 2010

    March 15, 2010
    by Sandy Shugart

    When a college commits itself so completely to an agenda of improving student learning results, as we have, there is a danger of becoming so focused on the internal programs and systems of the college, the variables we control, that we can neglect the community we serve. No one could reasonably describe Valencia as self-absorbed, but the risk remains as we engage in our daily work and manage the challenges our recent economic situation has created so we can do our daily work. But Valencia has a rich tradition of partnering with and serving the community. Perhaps it was born out of our earliest history, when there was a heated debate in the community over whether a comprehensive public community college was even needed in Orlando, now that a public university had been established.

    Fortunately for Orlando, the advocates for the creation of Valencia prevailed at last, including the founding president of the university, Dr. Charles Millican, who foresaw along with Raymer Maguire and others the possibility of a partnership between the university and community college that would better serve our community than either could alone. Today, UCF takes in almost 750 new freshmen from Osceola and Orange counties each year; Valencia takes in more than 3500. Most are headed toward further study at UCF or elsewhere after graduation, and although UCF is the third largest university in the U.S., it is still true that sixty percent of their graduates are transfers, the majority from Valencia. By partnering in our community, we have created the most powerful engine for college access in America.

  • Goal Three: Invest in Each Other

    Monday, March 15, 2010

    March 15, 2010
    by Sandy Shugart

    The first two goals in this strategic learning plan – Build Pathways and Learning Assured – are fundamental to our mission as a learning college. They describe where we will focus our attention and resources for the next several years toward improving learning and opportunity for our students. Goals Three and Four are more instrumental in nature, describing how we will work together and in partnership with the community to grow our capacity to achieve the first two goals. They are important means to important ends.

    Extraordinary work requires extraordinary people working in extraordinary ways. Valencia has long been blessed with these vital conditions. The college has given regular attention to hiring the best. In recent years, the hiring processes were substantially modified to recruit earlier and more compellingly. The faculty developed a written summary of what they hoped to see in new colleagues (The Competencies of a Valencia Educator), a document that continues to be revised and to guide search committees. Compensation was modified to make Valencia much more competitive in hiring generally and to enable the college to hire more seasoned educators when they are the best fit by recognizing in the system relevant experience outside the college. More important than these pragmatic changes, though, is a deep culture of looking for and hiring the best.