Residence: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Organization: Pikes Peak Community College
Occupation: Dean of Business, Public Service & Social Sciences
First job: I worked the sunflower fields in North Dakota.
Philosophy: Education is a basic human right.
Favorite music: The Avett Brothers
Favorite movie: Garden State
Favorite book: Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
What got me interested in my work: I believe in open access education, and the community college mission opens doors for students to pursue a better life through education. I once turned down a law professor job to continue my work with the community college mission.
Greatest accomplishment: Helping to drive major institutional initiatives (e.g., Ice House Entrepreneurship Program implementation, Completion by Design grant) that impact student persistence to goal completion.
Success is... Contributing to the success of others through education.
Favorite Quote: Victor Hwang’s “Rules of the Rainforest” – “Break rules and dream, open doors and listen, trust and be trusted, explore and experiment, accept failure and persist, and pay it forward.”
Current Project/s: PPCC is the first community college in the nation to offer the Ice House Entrepreneurship Program to interdisciplinary students as a required first-year student success course. PPCC’s goal is to advance student persistence by inspiring and engaging students in an entrepreneurial mindset and the limitless opportunities it can provide. This last year, we also offered the first Business Study Abroad program sending PPCC students to Denmark, Germany & Sweden. Part of the curriculum revolves around innovation and entrepreneurship from a global perspective and includes a presentation from Orange Innovation, “a network organization that invents and taps into projects that hold the potential to create a social, cultural, artistic or environmental impact on the world we live in.” In addition, PPCC has worked with community partners to offer “Innovate Colorado Springs,” a weeklong event that spotlighted entrepreneurial activities in the community and offered several keynote speakers from the Kauffman Foundation, Entrepreneurial Learning Initiative and the U.S. Patent Office.
How has NACCE impacted your work? NACCE’s push on community college leaders to lead their institutions with an entrepreneurial mindset is inspiring! I’m proud of PPCC’s willingness to lead with an entrepreneurial mindset by being the first community college to offer the Ice House Entrepreneurship Program to interdisciplinary students in a required first-year student success course.