MIDLAND, Texas — As Midland College begins the search for a new president, Wednesday marked a key early step in the process.
MC held three open forums to gather feedback from the community, information that will be used to develop a presidential profile for the available position.
The feedback received was in a positive and constructive manner as the community looks for the college to maintain a quality education by valuing it’s staff.
However, keeping salaries competitive, bettering infrastructure and adding more local career and technical education are all challenges moving forward.
“So it is a little scary, but there is the potential for long-term growth within our community here," said Joseph Bontke, Faculty Senate President at Midland College.
As MC begins the search for only it’s fifth president in half-a-century of existence, the board of trustees will have a real challenge in finding not just a competent leader but a cultural fit in the community.
“Our community is changing," said Bontke. "Things are becoming more diverse. There are a lot of things that are very specific to the Midland area and the Midland economy that need to be taken into account, so the board’s job is going to be very challenging.”
Despite the challenge that lies ahead, Midland College is poised to make this change at a good time.
“Midland is going to be a good search," said Bill Holda, a search consultant with the Association of Community College Trustees. "It’s an attractive college. It’s in a community that has lots of resources, whether it’s foundations, philanthropic organizations, or individuals who are very philanthropic. The college has [a] good tax base with the oil and gas revenue, with the companies that are located here. It’s a growing community.”
With Midland College a reflection of the community, community involvement is highly important.
Their job in this process is to help inform the board so that the board can make an informed decision.
“I think the role of the faculty and staff, the students, the business and workforce folks in the region, and, as well, just regular community members, they have a role in this, and part of that role is to reflect the needs of the community," said Holda.
Midland College has a presidential search survey that ends Thursday at 2 p.m., so there is still time for the community to have their opinions heard.
There will likely be opportunities for community input again in the future when this process really ramps up later on in April.