Fall 2009 Faculty Convocation

Dear Richland College Teaching Community, 

I look forward to seeing you at the Fall 2009 Faculty Convocation to be held on Thursday, August 20 at 7:00 p.m. as we prepare to start a new semester of teaching, learning, and community building together.  Please join me and your teaching colleagues in the student lounge located in El Paso Hall between 5:45 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. to register and enjoy light refreshments before moving into the Fannin Performance Hall for the main program at 7:00 p.m. A preliminary agenda for the program is attached.

The fall faculty convocation theme is Building Sustainable Local & World Community through Excellence in Student Success. As you begin preparing for your courses, I invite you to reflect on the vision of Richland College, which is to be the best place we can be to learn, teach, and build sustainable local and world community. With this vision in mind, I encourage you to continue to create a welcoming, engaging, and safe environment in which our students can thrive and learn — where whole people can collaborate to build the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that will lead to attainment of this vision. 

Prerequisite to a sustainable community are three interrelated concepts known as the "triple bottom line" of sustainability: social equity and justice, economic viability, and environmental vitality.  We need to keep in mind that any effort to build sustainable community must address all three of these elements.  As you develop your syllabi and plan your learning agenda, consider how your particular discipline addresses each of these key sustainability components.  Students should understand how your course engages them in helping Richland fulfill its vision. To assist you in incorporating a focus on sustainable community building in your courses, I have provided two attachments:

  1. Linking Soul to Role in Building Sustainable Local and World Community – the concentric circle diagram indicates how we develop whole people who foster a whole organization committed to whole communities, all of which contributes to a whole, healthy planet.  Richland College’s Institutional Learning Outcomes – this set of outcomes, developed with input from over seven-hundred faculty, staff, students, and community members, is informed by the College’s Mission, Vision, and Values as well as the Essential Learning Outcomes for the New Global Century promoted by the Association of American Colleges & Universities.
  2. GREEENRichland Commons for Sustainable Community Building – this document explains how Richland College’s programs, locations, and partners work together to build sustainable local and world community.

I hope these documents and our Thursday evening program will help you engage your students in a successful semester of teaching, learning, and community building at Richland College and beyond.  Thank you for your dedication to the future of our students, our community, and our planet.