Date: Fri, Jan 14th, 2022

Convocation focuses on transformational power of education

Dr. Stephanie Erdmann, CEO/dean of Great Falls College MSU, kicked off spring semester with a convocation for faculty and staff members Friday.

Dr. Stephanie Erdmann, CEO/dean of Great Falls College MSU, urged faculty and staff members to keep their attention on transforming the lives of students and helping them find meaningful careers and purpose at convocation Friday to kick off the spring semester.

She pointed to Oliver Main, a student who started with the Career and College Readiness Center to get his HiSET before graduating Great Falls College and transferring to the University of Providence, and Jensa Baumgartner, the college’s nominee for the Newman Civic Fellow program, as two examples of students whose lives are being transformed at Great Falls College.

“I love those kinds of stories. You all wrapped your arms around (Main) and made his experience here at the college an awesome experience for him,” she said.

And Baumgartner is thriving after some life setbacks before entering Connections 101 and getting back on course.

“She’s doing great and on a really good path,” Erdmann said. “Thank you for all you do.

The convocation, which was held in B101 and virtually, gathered people from all departments on college to celebrate the start of spring semester.

Erdmann also wrapped things up with a summary of the ongoing efforts toward forming the five-year strategic plan.

Also presenting Friday were Mary Kay Bonilla, chief student affairs and human resources officer, who introduced new employees and honored retirees; Troy Stoddard, director of the advising and career center, who gave a preliminary look at the EAB Navigate app, which will help identify struggling students earlier in order to get them help; Dr. Eleazar Ortega, director of institutional research, who talked about student success and enrollment; Scott Thompson, director of communications and marketing, who updated campus on the next six months of marketing efforts focused on lower-enrolled programs; Dr. Leanne Frost, executive director of instruction, and Mandy Wright, director of teaching and learning, who provided an update on accreditation and assessment ahead of the accreditation site visit later this year.

Erdmann wrapped things up with the reminder about the transformational power of education.

“Those are the stories you want to keep near and dear to your heart,” she said of Main and Baumgartner.

 All staff and faculty are expected to attend the convocation. If you were unable to attend live, a recording is here.

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Record Number: 769