By SEBASTIAN BARAJAS
Pima Community College governing board members discussed the future of PCC under Chancellor Lee Lambert during the semester’s first board meeting.
The meeting took place Sept. 18 regarding plans for the rest of the year and to recognize PCC’s success in adult education programs.
Lambert addressed many topics during the meeting, including a 33-point plan to get Pima “back to basics” and off probation.
PCC has been on probation with the Chicago-based Higher Learning Commission, its accrediting agency, since April 6.
Pima was placed on probation after the HLC received complaints from the community and sent a fact-finding team to investigate the allegations.
The team discovered a “culture of fear” within PCC.
It found the college out of compliance with several criteria and recommended sanctions.
July, the college submitted a monitoring report to the HLC that spelled out Pima’s plan for getting back in compliance and having sanctions removed.
Lambert has collected and analyzed evidence, and the college has assembled 14 committees to address the HLC’s concerns.
“Together for change,” Lambert told the governing board audience.
The chancellor informed that he would work with the board to create a shared governance model that increases responsibility and engagement with the faculty.
Lambert intends his plan to restore professionalism and confidence in governance and leadership of PCC.
“Ultimately, all the power in this institution resides with you,” he told the board members. “We don’t get to make decisions that you don’t delegate.”
Lambert also said all PCC faculty will be required to attend a course on sexual harassment. Multiple female employees filed accusations against the former chancellor, Roy Flores.
“I will not tolerate sexual harassment,” Lambert said.
Lambert said the college should build on the success of its nationally renowned adult education programs and the Center for Training and Development. The CTD has an 85 percent effectiveness rate in job placement, according to a press release from PCC.
He also desires more student engagement with the board in order to create a stronger, more informed community.
“At the end of the day, we only exist because our community supports our existence,” he said.
During his administration, Lambert hopes to create outreach by incorporating social media to better connect students to their campuses.
“We need to continue to bring ourselves into the 21st century,” he said.
The governing board’s next regular meeting will take place on Oct. 9.
Meetings are held in the C-105 Community Room in the District Office complex 4905 E. Broadway Blvd.