By: Travonte Harris
“2014 is a year of change,” recited one audience member, referencing one of Interim Chancellor, Dennis F. Michaelis’ early visits. Dr. Michaelis is a graduate of Kansas City State University and the former president of McLennan Community College. Dr. Michaelis retired from the position after 21 years of service in August 2009.
On October 17, 2013, Dr. Michaelis was appointed Interim Chancellor of St. Louis Community College. He explained during the conference that his intentions are to reorganize the college in a way that is beneficial for everyone. One of the first issues discussed was his intention to reduce some jobs and create others. He believes that a new part time or temporary vice chancellor position should be created to help unite the college and take some weight off of the current position.
A member from the audience expressed her concerns about the staff of St. Louis Community College and how unappreciated they feel. Dr. Michaelis expressed his thoughts about improving staff appreciation. Michaelis also spoke very strongly on his thoughts about financial aid and how it could be improved. Dr. Michaelis talked about reducing some of the hassle that makes it a pain to register for classes and financial aid. He explained that it should take as few people as possible to get through the process. Many audience members expressed their concerns about the online system of classes and how it could be improved. They talked about increased advertising in college areas to make students more aware of the opportunities. Dr. Michaelis believes that the online system needs to be reorganized and explained that he has dealt with the online system before while serving at other community collages.
With a new plan in place, everyone agreed that there is a lot to be done. Dr. Michaelis seems to have a plan as to where he believes the college should go, and says “2014 is a year of change.” Only time will tell what changes will be made and where the college is heading.