A team from North Shore Community College recently presented “Institutional Redesign to Center the Student Experience” at the national Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) Leadership Congress.

President Dr. William Heineman, Dr. JD LaRock, Chair of NSCC’s Board of Trustees, Andrea DeFusco-Sullivan, Assistant Provost, and Brian Falter, Coordinator of Orientation Programs, shared the story of how through its new five-year strategic plan, the college positioned itself to be totally student centric. The results are transforming the way the college fulfills its mission.

The need for a redesign was precipitated by a change in college leadership, the impact of the pandemic and a long-term enrollment decline. Thus, the new President worked with the college community to use strategic planning as the structure, and faculty and staff energy and ideas as the fuel, for innovation and institutional redesign.

President Heineman noted, “NSCC’s pairing its commitment to centering student needs with a new strategic plan, Transforming the Future with our Community, prioritizes excellent and equitable life outcomes for our students that in turn improves community outcomes.”

Heineman explained that those outcomes are dependent on the redesign of crucial aspects of the student experience. The presentation focused on three innovations in particular: Non-Credit to Credit Alignment to provide for easier transitions between credit and non-credit programming; a Dual Language Liberal Arts transfer degree, affirming bilingualism as an asset as an HSI; and a virtual, multilingual “One Stop” experience called Centro Hub to offer students’ academic, career, and financial aid counseling.

ACCT is a national organization that brings community college leaders together to address real-world challenges and help students succeed through advocacy and education.

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