Welcome to the 33rd Annual Student Success Conference!
This conference brings together our Maricopa community to share strategies for supporting students on their higher education journeys. As we navigate through the challenges and changes resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, our community college system strives to meet the needs of our students and communities through a culture of care.
In the Community College Research Center’s (CCRC) most recent report on helping community college students persist to completion, the value of ensuring students are supported in their first year can not be overlooked. As a result, this year’s Student Success Conference will focus on how all employees across Maricopa can embrace the First-Year Experience student learning outcomes and help our students accomplish their goals. To meet the needs of all of our employee groups, the conference will be held in a virtual format, across three days. All sessions will be recorded so that those serving students during any of the session times will be able to learn from colleagues across Maricopa on their own time.
We are pleased to have Dr. Sian Proctor, Astronaut, Geoscientist, & South Mountain Community College Residential Faculty, as the opening session and keynote speaker. Having just returned from her three-day journey to space, Dr. Proctor will share how she shaped her life experience by setting goals and knowing that the sky was truly the limit. Dr. Proctor is an inspiration to the world, and we are lucky to have her as part of our Maricopa family.
On the second day of our conference, Dr. Robert Vela, President of San Antonio College, will be the plenary speaker. San Antonio College was the recipient of the 2021 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence. As a leader at both a Guided Pathways and 4DX institution, Dr. Vela’s knowledge of how institutions can facilitate equitable student outcomes will be of great value to our work in Maricopa.
On our final day of the conference, Dr. Steven Gonzales, Interim Chancellor of the Maricopa County Community College District, will provide a brief introduction to kick off the day and his leadership team will share information and provide updates regarding exciting initiatives across our system.
We thank you for joining our virtual conference and participating in these important conversations. We hope you will find the sessions informative and inspiring. We also thank you for choosing to be a part of the Maricopa Community Colleges. Together, through a culture of care and support, we will help our students to achieve their academic and personal goals.
Eric Leshinskie, Ed.D.