Spring 2022: PA Days Welcome

On Thursday, January 6, 2022, I had the great pleasure to provide words of welcome for the second day of Professional Activity Days here at LCC. Below are my brief remarks, edited a bit to include images and hyperlinks. Thank you to Megan Lin and Annescia Dillard for the invitation, and to Patrick Butcher for help in presenting the visual elements of my remarks. 

President Robinson Welcome Message

Good morning, Megan. Thank you so much, and thank you to Annescia and the whole CTE. It’s good to see everyone here this morning.

I’d like to start off by reading our LCC land acknowledgement statement.

So happy new year, everyone. I’m so delighted to welcome you to the new semester. Usually I have the opportunity to deliver a welcome on behalf of the Board of Trustees. But if you were part of the session yesterday, you will have noticed that Trustee Proctor did such an amazing job doing that, so I would like to read some of what he said. I’d also like to thank Patrick for letting me access that recording last night so I could go back and hear what Trustee Proctor said first.

Trustee Proctor was careful to not just wish us a happy new year, but wish us a safe and healthy new year, which is so important in 2022. I’m going to read what he said verbatim, because he really went out of his way to express thanks and appreciation for faculty this year:

“On behalf of the Board of Trustees of Lansing Community College, I express my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to you for your dedication, determination and efforts that you’ve displayed over the past two years to carry out the mission of LCC of providing high quality education…” He went on to say, “we all know how challenging the last two years have been. And we know that those challenges continue as we begin 2022. We also know that you have met those challenges in the past and will continue to do so.”

And then he repeated himself three times. He said:

“Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.”

So Patrick, could you put that picture of the trustees up on the screen?

I just wanted all the faculty in the session this morning to understand that this Board really does appreciate what you do for our students. So on behalf of all these Trustees, I want to amplify Trustee Proctor’s remarks from yesterday.

I also want to thank the CTE for bringing Dr. Cia Verschelden to LCC yesterday. If you missed Dr. Verschelden’s keynote, I really encourage you to go back and and watch it. It was excellent. Trustee Proctor and I heard Cia at the MCCA Summer Institute last year, and he called me right after the session and we agreed that we should really try to get her to speak at LCC. So I want to thank the CTE for making that happen.

I think it’s really fitting that Dr. Verschelden gave her presentation from Escanaba, in the Upper Peninsula. I think this is where we are in 2022. She was doing an in-person keynote at Bay de Noc Community College, and a virtual keynote for us. This is our reality. Her message of “bandwidth recovery” is one we really need this year, and her book is excellent. I can highly recommend it. It gave me new insight and vocabulary into what our students are experiencing right now, and a new set of ideas we can use to better help our students and each other. And I also appreciated that she read all the comments about the stresses and bandwidth challenges that we have as as faculty and employees.

I would like to thank everyone for putting together this Teaching Online Symposium this morning. This is a topic that makes me feel really old because I started teaching online in 1994, which is just a couple years after my faculty internship here at LCC. In fact, one of my students in 1995 gave me this article from the Flint Journal about my online class. 1995 was the second year year I taught online.

Patrick is also sharing a screen capture of the webpage for a faculty workshop I gave 25 years ago, where I actually had to explain what the World Wide Web was when I built my courses. This is a few years before Blackboard was even a company. I had to hand code all of my course shells in HTML. So, I really appreciate you developing each other professionally, and everything that CTE does to help facilitate quality instruction online.

In conclusion, I just wanted to say good morning, welcome, and and thank you for all you do. Megan, thanks for having me this morning and have an excellent session. We really do appreciate everything you do for our students.