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Published on March 3rd, 2014 | by editor


Wright College Hosts Town Hall Featuring City Colleges Vice Chancellors

Town Hall VC Shaker

Last week, Wright College hosted a Town Hall meeting that provided students, faculty and staff with the opportunity to hear from City Colleges District leadership about their recent and planned efforts to support Wright College and our shared commitment to student success. This includes working to further increase graduation rates, which are up 38 percent since the start of Reinvention (through FY2012).

District office participants in the Town Hall were:

  • Laurent Pernot, Executive Vice Chancellor
  • Joyce Carson, Vice Chancellor of Business Enterprises
  • Vernese Edghill-Walden, Provost
  • Craig Lynch, Chief of Staff and Acting Chief Information Officer
  • Rasmus Lynnerup, Vice Chancellor of Strategy
  • Diane Minor, Vice Chancellor of Administrative Services
  • Melanie Shaker, Vice Chancellor of Finance/CFO
  • Tom Wheeler, Vice Chancellor of Safety & Security

The visiting Vice Chancellors provided brief descriptions of their responsibilities and shared information about the IT/C2C program development, the new alumni association, facilities improvements, security upgrades, the launch of the new online bookstore and more.

Approximately 140 people participated in the Town Hall, including our students and colleagues at Humboldt Park, who were able to view a live feed and submit questions during the Q&A session.Town Hall VC Carson Will Whitman

During the Q&A session, members of the Wright community raised issues relating to the purchase order process (how to indicate urgency to expedite); how student transcripts might incorporate participation and leadership in clubs and organizations like the SGA (being considered); whether printers are going to be removed from College offices (there will be no College-wide removal of printers, but some may be re-allocated according to demonstrated need/demand); as well as several excellent questions concerning budget and academic programs.

A question was also raised about whether parking options at Humboldt Park will be increased. Parking will be addressed in the proposed $6.25 million Humboldt Park Vocational Education Center (HPVEC) expansion, which represents City Colleges’ ongoing commitment to HPVEC.  The proposed expansion will include the addition of 6-7 classrooms, additional staff and faculty office space, and student collaboration/ lounge space on every floor, and will allow the College to offer more classes that meet the needs of the community.

In addition, attendees asked questions and shared concerns about the recently announced City Colleges of Chicago School of Nursing at the new $251 million Malcolm X College. This significant investment in nursing education at CCC will help prepare all our nursing students even better to seize the 20,000 nursing jobs coming to Chicago over the next decade.Town Hall Craig Lynch Student 2

Part of the planned new School of Health Sciences, the new School of Nursing will offer students access to a virtual hospital environment, exposure to teacher-practitioners from leading healthcare employers and access to clinical rotations at major local hospitals and healthcare providers.  The new School of Nursing will build upon best practices across the City Colleges system and combine instructional talent and resources to provide Chicagoans access to one of the highest-quality and most affordable nursing programs in the state, just like City Colleges’ information technology investment will be concentrated at Wright. City Colleges’ four nursing programs will merge into the new program over the course of the next two years, including Wright’s, which is scheduled to transition in 2016.

In addition, other City Colleges health care programs will move to the new School of Health Sciences in January 2016, and will continue to operate in their current locations until then.  Health Care bridges in adult education will remain in place at their current locations.  City Colleges students will continue to be able to take pre-nursing and general education and pre-requisite courses at any of the seven City Colleges before completing their program at the new School of Health Sciences.

As I emphasized in the open forums many of you attended last week, this is a consolidation, not an elimination, and no positions will be eliminated in the other health care programs as a result of this consolidation.  As always, I encourage and welcome continued discussion now and over the course of the two-year transition process.Town Hall VC Minor Dave Inman

I want to thank all of you who were able to attend the meeting, including our SGA members and leaders. I also appreciated the opening remarks shared by SGA president Phillip Price.

With several events occurring on campus simultaneously, I know it was a challenge to add this to the logistics mix. I want to thank the Facilities, IT and Security teams for rising to the occasion and ensuring the event was planned and executed flawlessly. This includes – on Jackie Lonquist’s team – Pat Mannix, Luis Guerro, Mickey Platt, the housekeeping staff, and recently hired events coordinator Ashley Neja; on Brad Sexton’s team, Bobbi Baschleben, David McDowell, TK Kirst, David Childers, Larry White, Richard Mosquera, Husam Al-hakim, and Abdelouahed Hamdi; and at Humboldt Park, Ken Santiago and Rolando Sosa. Katie Ordinario also helped to get the word out to students and provided staff for the event, including student Sheila Woods. Also, thanks to Angela O’Connor for overseeing it all.Town Hall VC Wheeler and all

Again, thank you for supporting this important event. These types of meetings, and the information exchanges they encourage, support our collective efforts to build on the successes of Reinvention and continue strengthening our culture focused on student success. I very much hope that these and other similar events are a frequent part of life at Wright College.

With all best wishes and much appreciation –


David Potash, President



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