Western Allianced of Community College Academic Leaders logoMessage from the chair


Douglas Murray

Alliance Executive Committee, New Mexico Military Institute

Dear Colleagues:

As the elected chair of the Alliance, I would like to thank current members for your continued commitment and support of our mission. For those of you who are not members, thank you for taking the time to visit our website. I hope you find, as you review it, reasons to consider joining us. To be sure, there are many benefits to you and your institution including our highly popular Annual Meeting and the Academic Leaders Toolkit. But, beyond them, and more importantly, I would like to add a brief word about why we would be honored if you would consider becoming a colleague with us in that mission.

Two-year institutions of higher education that include community colleges, junior colleges, and technical institutes are a critical part of the American post-secondary education system. Just one indicator is a recent research study by the Jack Kent Foundation that, “Community College transfers outperform high schoolers at top colleges.” I need not remind you that this nation today is challenged as never before, and as Thomas Friedman and others point out, the response to that challenge can only be based on education. Recognizing that challenge and the need to respond to it is best articulated in the Alliance’s mission. From that mission statement, “Our membership is drawn together by a sense of urgency and concern as the two-year institutions in the WICHE region face a rapidly shifting terrain of uncertainty and promise. Faced with daunting fiscal challenges, academic and financial models that undermine student and institutional success, and a national call to respond academically to a nation and a people in crisis, the Alliance is committed to re-imaging the work we in the two-year institutions do and reinventing how we do it.”

I, therefore, ask you to consider this invitation to join so you can take advantage of the many Alliance benefits detailed throughout the website and I welcome hearing from you.