New Port Richey, FL (April, 2016) – “Defeating the Odds…Achieving the Dream” is the topic of a series of public gatherings taking place prior to the inauguration of Pasco Hernando State College’s fourth president, Dr. Timothy L. Beard on May 6.
These panel discussions are being held at all PHSC campuses throughout March and April. Each panel is comprised of educators and local community leaders regionally, and they are addressing topics that can advance higher education opportunities with a special focus on economic development.
On Thursday, March 31, the panel members consisted of Dr. Beard, Sheriff Chris Nocco, Jerome Salatino, CEO of CareerSource Pasco/Hernando, Rob Aguis, principal of Marchman Technical College, Misty Price, Ph.D representing PHSC business and technology curriculums, and Norman Widamen, Jr., a student ambassador at PHSC working toward his degree in leadership and computer programming. It was held on PHSC’s west campus in New Port Richey.
Dr. Beard opened the discussion with his vision that includes innovative teaching that leads to student success in the workforce and the need for strong community partnerships with the school district, the business community, technical education centers, and workforce development.
Dr. Stan Giannet, vice president of Academic Affairs with PHSC, was the program’s moderator. He began with each panel member’s own future vision for student’s careers, success and community involvement. He also asked the panel to describe the challenges PHSC, law enforcement and technical education face with a growing population and growth issues.
Most notable was the attention to PHSC’s internships and how such a program prepares the student for a career and life-ready skills. Panel member Norman Widamen is an intern himself and praises the program for its ability to teach students the soft skills necessary they will need beyond academic learning so that future employees can flourish in the workplace.
One thing Dr. Beard said that he learned from coaching was creating a “culture of expectation” that encourages students to give their best effort. This along with top-notch teachers and projecting the big picture gives them the best chance at a good education and what that can mean to a student’s future. Studies show that the better earners are those who acquired a degree beyond high school, making an associate degree from a community college a true investment.