College president Terry Calaway announced his retirement, effective Aug. 1, 2013, in a statement released Friday.
The Board of Trustees is planning the process of selecting Calaway’s replacement and is expected to announce the plans in coming weeks.
Calaway cited a desire to spend more time with his family as his reason for leaving and said his health is good. The complete statement follows.
“Today I am announcing my retirement as president of Johnson County Community College. My health is fine. I am retiring to spend more time with my family; I plan to leave the college Aug. 1, 2013.
When I joined JCCC, I was charged with refocusing the college around students and their success. We have been able to do that as well as improve retention, reduce unnecessary overhead, and grow our foundation endowment and scholarship funds. Recently our bond rating was reaffirmed at the highest level possible, and we have maintained or reduced our mill levy each year that I have served. It is now time, though, for the college to prepare for the next generation of leadership. I leave the college with much admiration for our team and board. I am indebted to everyone in our community for their kindness and support.
In my time at JCCC, these are the accomplishments of which I am most proud:
- Enrollment has increased by 8 percent, making JCCC the largest institution of undergraduate education in the state. The college has undertaken new initiatives focusing on student success and retention, including learner engagement and Dream Johnson County. Other initiatives, such as outcomes assessment and healthcare simulation, help teachers support student success in the classroom and on the job. A new Center for Innovation fosters creative thinking about all aspects of the college.
- I’ve helped develop articulation agreements with the state’s four-year schools, which assure that at least 55 credit hours of general education courses will transfer to Kansas public colleges and universities. JCCC has also signed reverse transfer agreements with Kansas State University, Pittsburgh State University and Emporia State University, which allow students to finish an associate’s degree while attending one of those four-year schools.
- In a community scan sponsored by the Overland Park Chamber of Commerce Foundation released in January, JCCC received a 93 percent approval rating from both voters and businesses, who said JCCC plays a key role in economic development in Johnson County.
- Campus expansion during my time includes the opening of the Regnier Center and the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, additions to the Science Building (for dental hygiene and emergency medical science) and the Student Center (additional space for the bookstore), the construction of the Olathe Health Education Center on the grounds of Olathe Medical Center, and the construction currently in progress of a new Hospitality and Culinary Academy.
- In 2008, I signed the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment, making sustainability an important part of JCCC. Since then, JCCC has incorporated sustainability into the curriculum; developed new recycling initiatives; planted a campus farm as well as an edible schoolyard; built new “green” buildings, including Galileo’s Pavilion; and launched energy efficiency measures that have saved the college more than $700,000.
- The college has developed a new emphasis on emergency preparedness, with a new office of emergency management and an enterprise risk management initiative. More than 1,500 employees have been trained to respond during emergencies or life-threatening situations.
- JCCC now allocates dollars in ways that fund the college’s priorities and has placed greater emphasis on grants with the creation of a new grants office. The college has also implemented a plan whereby $3 of the cost per credit hour goes toward technology, which has allowed JCCC to improve its infrastructure for networking and telephony. The college has also maintained its AA+/AAA bond ratings.
- Contributions to the JCCC Foundation for student scholarships have grown from $500,000 a year to more than $900,000. In 2012, the Foundation’s total assets reached an all-time high of more than $26 million.
JCCC has the best faculty and staff of any college in the nation. I deeply believe you are ready to be even better. I look forward to watching this happen as a member of the community, and I will be your loudest cheerleader.
The JCCC board of trustees is considering next steps for finding a new president for JCCC. The board expects to announce its plans in the next several weeks.
I will still be here for several months, so I won’t say goodbye just yet. Please know how much I have enjoyed being president of JCCC and working with all of you.
Compiled by Mackenzie Clark, firstname.lastname@example.org