May 5, 2017 By Dave Wilson
The “Let’s buy land and build another building” culture in the Houston Community College (HCC) board room needs to change to: “Let’s take care of the buildings, programs, and students we currently have”.
We need to take care of the students in our district before we go and build outside our district. We need to change our focus to “Quality” from “Quantity”. After we achieve “Quality” the “Quantity” will appear on its’ own (without the millions of dollars we spend on TV and billboards).
Issues with our nursing programs are examples of what this board should focus on. I realize that a previous Board and Administration issued the directive to grow the nursing program to fill a new building. We were promised 500 ADN students by the fall of 2017 and we will be lucky to have 50. A brand new 10 story building will be nearly empty. We should of never lowered the admissions standards.
We are paying for those past bad decisions today, which has put us on “conditional” status with the Texas Board of Nursing and blocks our LVN program from enrolling new students this fall. This Board (except trustees Evans-Shabazz and Hansen) and the Administration have had over 3 years to deal with the Nursing School problems and did nothing. Not only did this Board (except trustees Hansen and Sane) do nothing, they decided to issue Trustee Wilson a public reprimand for trying to help the students in the ADN program. Without those students passing the State Nursing Exam, our ADN program would be on “conditional” status.
None of these challenges are insurmountable. We must deal with these problems head on, rather than sticking our heads in the sand. We as a Board must take responsibility for the problems and commit to change the “Culture” at HCC. If we take care of “Quality” the “Quantity” will come.