We Endorse Dunne and Corrigan for BOT election

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We Endorse Dunne and Corrigan for BOT election

Lindsay Piotter

Lindsay Piotter

Lindsay Piotter

Kimberly Wilson, Opinion Editor

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We endorse Dunne and Corrigan for the upcoming Board of Trustees election.

As a former student, Dunne will be able to more clearly understand and empathize with the needs of current COD students. Dunne’s current volunteer work with the college will make for a smooth transition on the board of trustees. Not only will she already have knowledge of many of the issues facing students, but she is already working with faculty towards solutions.

Corrigan’s willingness to work and communicate with members of the COD community to resolve current issues facing the college makes her a good candidate for the position. Her plan to further promote COD’s Developmental Disabilities program will hopefully lead to an increase in enrollment and help more students with disabilities gain a good education here at the college.

 

Two trustee seats are up for grabs in the April 2 College of DuPage Board of Trustees election. Four candidates, Maureen Dunne of Naperville; Dan Bailey and Annette Corrigan of Wheaton, and Marc Incrocci of Darien, are currently running for office.

A “joint leadership role” between the COD president and board is paramount for Corrigan, who also says COD students can expect her to have a strong presence on campus if she is elected. “I just do better face-to-face, talking with people. I don’t know if that’s old school or not, but I just feel like you get more out of an interaction with a person if you do it face-to-face.”

To combat the recent decline in enrollment COD has faced, Corrigan states the college needs to implement and promote new programs. If elected, she intends to be a champion of COD’s Developmental Disability Program, a program in which she says her son, who has special needs, will be taking classes in this fall. Corrigan believes this and other programs will attract more students to the college.  

“When people realize that there is a program in place…there is such a need in DuPage County for people like my son who want to advance their education, who want to find jobs, career development. This is gonna explode.”

Marc Incrocci, who sees the board of trustees as “executive champions,” agrees with Corrigan in that the college needs to implement new programs to aid in increasing enrollment. Incrocci feels more trade programs will be valuable.  

“I felt like trades is a nice fit because there are existing facilities and infrastructure, and going back to being an executive champion, my role would be to assist the college to bring trade employers to the college to help with establishing those programs.”

Incrocci also stated that to help increase enrollment, more emphasis needs to be placed on making students aware of the wide array of scholarship opportunities available to them to aid with the cost of tuition.

“Like again with the trade programs–and I’m blanking on the name–there’s a federal grant [available to all the public] of $500 million that was unused in 2017 because no one knew it was there. There’s money out there for students, and we need to make it very clear to them.”

Both Corrigan and Incrocci believe the main issue facing the board of trustees moving forward is to find a new president for the college. “I think that with the departure of Dr. Rondeau, I think that people are really anxious to have some consistency in leadership” stated Corrigan. Incrocci echoed Corrigan’s sentiments and stated the president must be “stable,” “strong,” and “compassionate” and must also be able to “reach all parts of the organization.”

Maureen Dunne believes being a former student of COD will give her “an informed perspective” as a board of trustees member on the many issues facing students at the college.

“I have an understanding of what credits don’t transfer and why and which ones easily do transfer. So I know [that] one big concern when students come here is–the ones that do wanna transfer to a four-year school– are their credits going to transfer? What can we do better to make that a smoother process?”

Dunne, who has previously co-founded and ran technology companies, states she will be able to have an appreciation for students who are interested in entrepreneurship and technology. “I’ve been involved in a lot of projects [at COD] that I would continue doing and bring a new perspective to the board.”

Dunne has also met with faculty on expanding autism programs at the college and has set up a scholarship at COD for students with the disability.

Dan Bailey, who is also a former COD nursing student, is interested in making COD affordable and accessible for all students.

“Some people don’t have cars. Some people might be immigrants or LGBTQ. There’s a lot of things that might impede someone from being able to fully use the college, and I would think we would wanna reach out [and] find out what it is that would make them feel more welcome and make sure that their needs are met.”

To solve the issue of declining enrollment, Dunne thinks the board needs to have more conversations about adding more STEM and autism programs to the college. She also believes there is room to expand online courses in the technology field.  “…With my background in educational technology, I think there’s a real opportunity to offer more quality classes online.”

If elected, Bailey says he would like to focus on marketing COD as “a fast track to good education or a good job” in order to increase enrollment. Bailey also stated the board being more welcoming of immigrants would aid in drawing more students to the college.

 

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