S2 E30 Community College Veteran Reflects on Leadership and Amplifying Diverse Voices - Howard Wach

As Howard Wach explains in this three part Digication Scholars Conversation with host Jeff Yan, Guttman Community College is not your typical community college. Opened in 2012 with a unique structure designed to address the high student attrition rate common in community colleges, Guttman only enrolls full-time students and was originally created without academic departments. With an established career in the CUNY system, first as a professor of history, and then as an administrator holding various dean level positions at LaGuardia and Bronx Community College, Howard has brought a wealth of experience and bold honesty to the challenging role of Vice-president of Academic Affairs and Provost at Guttman, from which he recently retired. Over the course of the conversation Jeff and Howard discuss a number of universal issues facing higher education, including decreasing enrollment and the intrusion of partisan politics, as well as challenges specific to Guttman, including the difficulties of catering to a diverse student-body from lower-income backgrounds with a campus located in the affluent borough of Manhattan. Despite the challenges, Howard reflects positively on his career with CUNY. “I had an opportunity to do a lot of different things in these different institutional spaces that I found myself in, and I feel a lot of gratitude. I feel fortunate to have been able to do that and I think made some kind of a difference in the places that I worked.”
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