Saturday, October 21st, 2017

Impact on lives focus of CC talk

Changing people’s lives was the main theme at Clarendon College Tuesday morning as faculty and staff assembled to prepare for the fall semester which starts next week.

CC President Robert Riza addressed employees during All College Day to remind everyone the purpose of the college.

“What we do is relevant, and it is more relevant today than it was a year ago,” Dr. Riza said. “The number one predictor of success at a university is the possession of an associate’s degree.”

Riza said CC graduates finish at Texas Tech University and West Texas A&M University at a rate of about 70 percent, twice the rate of incoming freshmen at those institutions. He also reiterated statements made by WT President Walter Wendler who has said if student must borrow money for their first two years at WT, they should go to a community college instead.

CC continues to develop programs to meet the needs of area students, and Riza discussed the college’s new horse judging program, an honors program for students with dual credit hours, and the new CDL program.

Clarendon College’s innovative approach to developmental education is now a requirement for other colleges around the state. Riza said HB 2223 that was approved by the 85th Legislature now requires every college to teach developmental education using the co-requisite model pioneered by CC in 2014 in which students with remedial needs are immersed in traditional college classes with added tutorial help rather than having to spend multiple semesters in developmental classes.

“The state has given colleges four years to adopt this,” Riza said. “Clarendon College did it in one year and changed whole lot of lives.”

As another measure of success and hard work, Riza pointed again to the recent Legislative session. The governor’s office said to prepare for a four percent reduction in state funds, but Clarendon College received a ten percent increase in state appropriations.

Riza said that due to that good news, along with enrollment growth, college employees who were in their current positions as of June 1 will receive a three percent raise and adjunct faculty will receive a raise of $25 per credit hour.

The president also said dual credit continues to be an important part of CC, and those class offerings are expanding this fall to Canadian High School. Clarendon College has a 90 percent success rate in its dual credit program, and that number is 95 percent in Clarendon and Hedley high schools.

“What we do changes lives,” Riza said.

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