By Alexandra Blockton
Professor Jim Witt was born on Sept. 7, 1972, and his hometown is Jerseyville, Il. He started teaching at Lewis and Clark Community College (L&C) in 2015 and has been teaching for 20 years. He currently teaches PRC 131 Introduction to Process Technology, PRCS 151 Instrumentation 1, PRCS 252 Instrumentation 2, PRCS 231 Introduction to Quality Control, INST 131 DC Electricity and INST 132 AC Electricity.
Professor Witt’s title on campus is Assistant Professor/Coordinator of Process Operations Technology and Control Systems Technology. He graduated from Greenville College with a Master of Arts in Curriculum and Instruction.
He decided to become a teacher to help make a difference in other people’s lives. “I have had many influential teachers in my life and really wanted to help others find a path of their success,” said Professor Witt.
Prior to becoming a teacher, he worked at Olin Brass and Winchester Ammunition for 9 years. He held many positions while he was employed there, from process plant operators to management positions.
Professor Witt said, “I started my educational career at Jersey Community High School, where I taught an electrical class for years. I also was an Adjunct Instructor at Ranken Technical College for 8 years.”
In the summer of 2014 he started as an adjunct instructor at L&C. “The best part of my job is meeting students and witnessing their successes. Many students start the program, due to many different reasons. I’ve been fortunate to be a small part of these students achieving their goals,” said Professor Witt.
“Process Operations and Instrumentation programs do change people’s lives. Within two years a student can go from working a minimum wage job to making anywhere between $25-$42 dollars an hour. The programs are set up to help ensure the success of the students, with flexible schedules we can help students with busy lives achieve their goals,” said Professor Witt.
The Process Operations Program was put together 14 years ago to help replenish the vacated process positions due to retirement. The Process Operations program is located at the N.O. Nelson campus in Edwardsville, Il. They include small class sizes and the most current hands-on training aides, such as Simtronics, Lab volt Process trainers and Bayport Skid units, which help them learn to use critical thinking and hands-on skills. Students who pursue this degree can find employment in many industries, such as Phillips 66, Eastman Chemical, Affton Chemical, Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and Water Treatment Plants. Salaries for these positions range from $25-$42 an hour.
The Instrumentation and Control Systems Technology program at L&C gives students who are looking for a career in the electrical field many options for employment. The instrumentation program is also located at the N.O. Nelson campus in Edwardsville, Il. The program offers small classes, which aids in student comprehension. Classes are very hands-on with the most current technology, which is Siemens and Allen Bradly PLC’s, Bayport Skid Unit and a curriculum that aligns with the needs of the industry. Many students are finding employment with local companies. Salaries for these positions range between $30-42 an hour.
“My teaching method is creating an environment that allows students to be comfortable with their learning. I find that creating a learning environment that allows students to express their opinions and understanding of the material truly helps them process the material,” said Professor Witt.
His greatest strength as a teacher is treating students the way he wants to be treated. Professor Witt said, “I have found that there are many things going on in everyone’s lives. It is important to understand the needs of the students and to lend a hand when possible.”
He considers his most challenging part of being a teacher is being able to adjust presentations to ensure student success. The most rewarding part is seeing and hearing of students’ successes.
“There have been many proud moments. The texts and phone calls I receive from students who just want to give thanks will always be a proud moment. I’m a strong believer that people are put in your life for a reason. I am glad to play a small part in the student’s life,” said Professor Witt.
His advice to any student coming into this field is to apply yourself and work hard! Doing this will help result in future successes.
“My goal is always to ensure that the programs are offering the best education possible for the students to be successful,” said Professor Witt.
Office Phone: 618-468-5832
Office Location: Process Operations/ Instrumentation and Control Systems technology at the N.O.Nelson Campus in Edwardsville, Ill.
Office Hours: Monday-Thursday 10a.m-1:30p.m.