Hundreds of Brookdale faculty, staff members and administrators came together in the Collins Arena on Jan. 19 to celebrate a new calendar year and kick off a promising new semester during the annual Spring Convocation.
Brookdale President Dr. Maureen Murphy and Vice President for Learning Dr. Matthew Reed began the program by welcoming the college’s newest employees into the fold and acknowledging those who will assume new organizational roles this term.
The capacity crowd also held a moment of silence for Brookdale community members Cheryl Cummings, Marianne Drake and Michael Fowler, each of whom passed away in late 2015.
Murphy then presented an overview of the college’s progress toward a number of strategic goals for the 2015-16 school year, including strides in student success, financial stability, facilities planning and college image enhancement.
She highlighted a number of ongoing initiatives – including new student outreach efforts, potential new partnerships with local school districts and continued work on a comprehensive “guided pathways” system – while calling on all Brookdale employees to embrace the power of change in the months and years ahead.
“We have this splendid, rocky and successful history, but that is not going to take us into the future,” said Murphy, referencing Brookdale’s rapidly approaching 50th anniversary. “We are not like anyone else. We are unique. We are Brookdale. But we cannot fix our mindset on what we were. We need to look forward. We need a deep, deep understanding of who we are and who we need to become.”
Next month, Brookdale will begin work on a comprehensive review for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. The self-directed study, Murphy said, will serve as an opportunity to take a fresh look at college operations, evaluate changing student needs and reimagine Brookdale’s role as 21st century educational institution. All employees are encouraged to participate in the process, she added, and help bring that vision to life.
“The world has changed,” she said. “It always has and it always will. But let’s use this time, let’s use our skill and our creativity to craft our story. To chart our future. Let’s roll up our sleeves and get to work.”
Check out more photos of Spring Convocation here.