Message from Chancellor Shirley Lawler to Faculty and Staff
Greetings to all!
We are starting February off on a positive note with our spring 2019 enrollment trending upward. We are hopeful the numbers will hold, resulting in an overall increase in enrollment for census day on Feb. 11. We know we have much work to do in the area of student retention, but everyone has worked hard to develop strategies to grow enrollment and retain our students. Thanks to all for continuing to focus on student success. Everyone on campus interacts with students, and positive experiences with campus employees make students want to return to campus.
As part of our continued focus on retention, several employees will be headed to Jefferson City for the Feb. 12 Missouri Guided Pathways Summit (MoGPS) hosted by MDHE, with support from Complete College America. The focus will be developing degree maps/pathways and imbedding “intrusive advising” across institutions with the goal of increasing retention.
The Employee Recognition Luncheon was held on Jan. 25, and it was so nice to see many of our employees, retirees and campus supporters come together to recognize the accomplishments of staff and faculty for 2018. President Smart’s words of encouragement for our campus were appreciated, and we enjoyed hosting some of the Springfield leadership team at our luncheon. A big “thank you” goes out to Alyssa Collins for doing an excellent job with organizing the luncheon.
Missouri State-West Plains had a joint meeting with the City of West Plains and the West Plains R-7 School District Jan. 25. Our topics of discussion included sustaining the GOCAT facility, establishing a police substation on campus, and our cooperative and lease agreements with the West Plains Civic Center. We had a positive conversation regarding all topics discussed, and I am very encouraged by this strong citywide partnership.
We love to welcome student groups to Missouri State-West Plains, so please let us know when you are hosting groups for events on campus. On Saturday, Jan. 26, Jerry Trick hosted a group of middle school students on campus for math relays. What a great group of students, parents, and teachers! It was a wonderful experience to interact with this group; many of the parents and teachers were our former students and graduates. Again, give us a heads up on our calendars, and we’ll always try to be at these activities—and many thanks to faculty and staff for hosting all of these events!
As you can see from the list of calendar items posted below, February is packed with many events taking place on campus. Our focus group meetings will take place this week; we are hoping for good turnout at these sessions. Our objective will be to review our long-range plan and decide the future direction of Missouri-West Plains. I look forward to hearing from our campus and our community regarding the path forward for the West Plains campus.
We have an exciting weekend ahead with the Feb. 9 Homecoming festivities. Please join us for an evening of activities at the civic center on Saturday as we take on the Three Rivers College Raiders. The game will be preceeded by a Friends of the Garnett Library chili supper in the Magnolia Room and followed up by a meet/greet with the homecoming candidates.
As the semester glides along, we have many events taking place on campus. They include:
Items of Note
- Feb. 5 Tortoise and the Hare play, 7 p.m., civic center theater
- Feb. 8 Faculty and Staff Long-Range Plan Focus Group, 1:30-3 p.m., M112
- Feb. 8 Red Carpet Day for prospective high school students
- Feb. 9-23 Campus Community Spring Art Show, Hass-Darr Hall.
- Feb. 9 Grizzly Homecoming activities starting at 4:30 p.m.
- Feb. 15 Red Carpet Day for prospective high school students
– Erica Puckett received MSU’s Staff Excellence in University Service Award. The award is given to full-time staff members “who have made significant contributions to the university community. They strive to do their jobs well on a daily basis, go above and beyond the call of duty in a special situation and have contributed in a significant way to the success of the university.”
– Scott Schneider was selected as the Chamber Volunteer of the Year for going above and beyond the call of duty with his work with the West Plains chamber and other civic groups in West Plains.
Always remember, what we do each day for students does make a difference.