After many requests from employees here at Lewis and Clark Community College (L&C), the Board of Trustees is offering departments the opportunity to schedule a listening session with two board members in an effort for better understanding of their place on campus.
According to L&C’s Interim President Lori Artis the goals of these sessions are as follows.
“The goals identified by the Board include:
- To learn more about your department/division
- To tour your facilities, learn about your technology, and meet employees
- To learn about challenges your department might currently be facing
- To hear about your department’s successes and achievements
- To hear about your strategic goals
- To hear your ideas about ways to continue to support students and the community.”
There have been several listening sessions held to date, and while the meetings are not mandatory, Artis has received an overall positive feedback thus far.
“The Board has commented on how informational, educational, and transparent the sessions have been. Employees have expressed a feeling of support from the Board who are asking important questions about their needs and their challenges. Overall, the sessions are creating an open dialogue between employees and the board that will serve the college well for years to come,” said Artis.
Ethan Braasch is the manager of the Horticulture and Grounds Department, and has recently had one of these listening sessions with Board members Dwight Werts and Julie Johnson. With only two people in the department, Braasch felt that the meeting between the four of them was both relaxed and intimate.
“We were excited when we found out the Board was doing these listening sessions as we wanted a chance to relay the importance of the Monticello Sculpture Gardens and of the general aesthetic of the campus in the success of the institution as a whole. Both Mrs. Johnson and Mr. Werts listened intently to our presentation, taking notes and asking poignant questions throughout. My impression was that they were there to get to know us personally and to understand the ins and outs of our operations. They were happy to offer input for some of the questions we had for them and seemed eager to help us succeed in our efforts to make the campus beautiful and welcoming,” said Braasch.
Braasch recommends to any department that they arrange a listening session if possible.
“It’s just good to know that there is a concerted effort by both long-standing and new board members to become familiar with us, as individuals and as a department,” said Braasch.