Page 6 - Campus Technology, July 2017
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COMMUNITY COLLEGES dian schaffhauser
Dethroning Enrollment to Put Learning First
Florida’s Valencia College long ago gave up being an “institution builder,” eschewing enrollment numbers in favor of a focus on learning outcomes. Here’s how President Sandy Shugart has rewritten the standard formula for community colleges.
VALENCIA COLLEGE (FL) has just won another award. This Orlando-based community college system with five campuses, an annual enrollment of nearly 61,000 credit- seeking students and 35 associate’s degrees, 81 certificate programs and three bachelor’s degrees first came to the forefront when it received the inaugural Aspen Institute prize for “Community College Excellence” (besting a thousand applicants). Then it was recognized by ¡Excelencia in Education! for its promotion of academic success for Latino students.
The most recent accolade went directly to President Sandy Shugart, who received one of three McGraw Prizes in Education intended to recognize “outstanding individuals who have dedicated themselves to improving education through new approaches.” Shugart has served since 2000 at the helm of the college system. He’s the author of a management book: Leadership in the Crucible of Work:
Discovering the Interior Life of an Authentic Leader. And he’s a singer and songwriter with three CDs of music, as well as a frequent speaker who’s likely to break out into poetry or song during his presentations.
Recently, Campus Technology interviewed Shugart to understand the history and extent of Valencia’s innovations.
Campus Technology: Share some ways Valencia College has changed things up from the way the traditional community college operates.
Sandy Shugart: The truth is, our colleges were designed in late post-war America — on an industrial model that values productivity and volume over everything. It’s the way we’re built .... Community colleges were never designed to be places of deep learning and personal engagement. They were designed to be mass treatments of raw material that produced

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