Weekly Update – September 6, 2009

on September 6, 2009 in Weekly Update

Hello San Jac Community,

I hope you are enjoying a very pleasant Labor Day weekend and finding plenty of fun for your extra day off!

As the semester gets underway, I want to remind you that we are moving into the flu season with an entirely new level of awareness. I encourage each of us to pay attention to the symptoms and utilize protection mechanisms. The following provides a briefing and some helpful information:

  • We are continuing to monitor updates from the Center on Disease Control on the regular flu and the H1N1 virus.
  • The College will maintain a specific website on influenza and health information and updates. The link will be  posted from our main SJC website in order to make access easy.
  • You can contact Ginger Lambert in the Safety Office if you need hand sanitizer. Her extension is 6183 or her email is ginger.lambert@sjcd.edu.
  • We are tracking employees and students who have influenza-like symptoms. I am asking that you contact Ginger Lambert at  the phone or email address above so she can keep track of the health of our students and employees.  Influenza symptoms include fever over 100°, weakness, fatigue, lack of appetite, coughing, and sore throat. The website will have more detailed information for you.
  • Be sure to wash your hands often and thoroughly, cough and sneeze into your sleeve or a tissue, keep commonly touched surfaces and items clean, and stay home if you’re sick.

On a healthier topic, this week I completed meeting with each member of the senior leadership team regarding their individual performance plans (IPP) for this new fiscal year.  The process of cascading throughout the organization from the annual priorities, to senior leadership, to managers, to supervisors, to all employees will begin shortly.  Faculty will be participating in the IPP process this year, and their IPP’s will cascade through the campus Presidents, Vice Presidents of Instruction, Deans, and Department Chairs.  This linking of priorities will help us to focus our efforts and resources in order to find more effective ways to achieve our mission and serve students.  I also met this week with Steve Trnack, Susan Temple and Drs. Harris, Matkin, Murphy, and Williamson to discuss the additional support and training that will be conducted at the campuses to roll out the IPPs for the instructional side of the College. I know it has been a challenge to move all employees and faculty onto IPPs, but I am excited about the progress we are making.  I know this will get easier as we continue to move through the process. I will also  provide an update on our work in this area to Board of Trustees on September 14th.

In a previous weekly update, I had mentioned that I would focus on one annual priority each week beginning in September. My purpose is to provide you a little more information on why each area is a priority for San Jacinto College and how they fit together and what your role is in each. This week, I will cover annual priority #1:

College Vision, Mission, and Strategic Planning: Clarify and Develop the Five-Year Plan for the College

In this annual priority, we want to update our vision and mission statements and develop a detailed college strategic plan for 2010-2015. This strategic plan will be developed through a process that gathers input from the Board of Trustees, our internal SJC college community, and our external service area community. That input gathering process will be conducted in September and October.  We will also anchor this input with regional, state, national, and global trends including demographic, workforce, delivery modes, and public expectations, to name a few.

I believe that a strategic plan should be a guide for the future, but dynamic enough to enable redirection due to the rapid changes in the educational and business landscape.  Many of you may have seen my video message on our College YouTube Channel (if not, here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/sanjaccollege).  In that message, I mention the commitment to intentional change rather than a “favor-of-the-month” mentality.  The strategic plan will enable us to have a long-term vision.  It is important to look at long-term issues as if they were close at hand, so we can also view immediate issues through a long-term lens.  This view will help us to maintain our focus on the important strategies of San Jacinto College which will enable student success while competing in an ever-changing industry climate.  Strategic plans pull us forward and enable us to collectively see our future, be our future, and make our future our reality.

As we go through the strategic planning process, we will continue to focus on our “plan-do-check-act” continuous improvement process.  We will develop a plan for what we want to accomplish, we implement it, check our results, and act with calculated changes at an ever increasing pace.  Once the strategic plan is created, it is my intention to validate it and obtain Board approval and share it across and throughout our college community.

Let me close by reiterating something I said in the above mentioned message to the College: Plans are working tools, dynamic and flexible  and responsive to our ever-changing environment.  Organizations are not successful because they have great plans; they are successful because they execute those plans successfully.  Our success will be through our ability to execute our plan.



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