Last Friday (May 10, 2013) I was asked, by our campus president, to “say a few words” at the grand opening of the College of Marin’s new Science-Math-Nursing building. After being introduced by the president, here is what I said:
Thank you very much, President Coon.
Good afternoon, everyone. It is wonderful to see all of you here today on this very special occasion.
You know, I was here back in late 2009 when we broke ground for this new facility, and I’m almost sure I remember one of the speakers observing “what a great day this is for the College of Marin.” Well, I must admit: I think this is an even greater day as we celebrate the official opening of our new science math nursing facility.
The building that stands behind me is an amazing space to sharpen our focus on student learning and student success here at the college.
We do talk a lot about student success these days. And rightfully so. I believe that there are a whole range of factors that contribute to student success, and surely a positive learning environment has to rank near the top.
Among the factors of a positive learning environment, I believe, are instructors who are knowledgeable in their content areas, skilled at communicating with others, facilitating student learning, and able to do it in caring and supportive ways. We have a cadre of highly-skilled full-time and part-time instructors in this building who do all of that very well.
Another very important part of a positive learning environment - and I guess I’m talking a little bit about my philosophy of education here - is the physical space where that learning takes place. With the availability of this new science math nursing building, we now have a first-rate facility comprised of classrooms and labs that are firmly situated in the 21st century. We are very lucky. Our already outstanding programs in the sciences, in math, and in nursing have gotten a very big boost with the creation of this building. I would like to thank the citizens of Marin County for extending their vote of confidence in us and in voting for the resources to make this space a reality.
My most sincere thanks to you all.
[For a collection of my photos taken during the construction phase of the Science-Math-Nursing building, click here.]