By: Catrina Leone: intern
Another great story to tell from Cuyahoga Community College! Alex Johnson was formally installed as the fourth President of Cuyahoga Community College.
This wonderful ceremony took place in the auditorium of the Metropolitan campus. During his inaugural address, he spoke of a national call to action for post-secondary institutions to produce 10 million more graduates by 2020. Which would be an increase of 50 percent over 2010. He set a goal of Tri-C producing 13,000 more graduates to contribute to that effort. He also noted how community colleges can help people reclaim the American dream.
There are five key objectives he touched on, including a strengthened focus on student completion: working more closely with employers to ensure students earn degrees with labor market value; adapting to changing media to tell Tri-C’s story in more effective ways; prioritizing resources for the benefit of students; and continued nurturing of collaboration and engagement with the community.
“If we can provide this foundation as the college enters its next half century, it will enable us, individually and collectively, to solve our nation’s most pressing problems. We will life up those less fortunate and ensure that all people, regardless of their backgrounds or life circumstances, have a chance at productive, meaningful lives,” Johnson stated.
Speakers of this amazing ceremony included: Mayor Frank Jackson, State Senator Nina Turner, a Tri-C alumna; Tri-C President Emeritus Jerry Sue Thornton; and Kent State University President Emeritus Carol Cartwright. Johnson was named president back in May and has been on the job since July 1st. He was president of Tri-C’s Metro Campus from 1993-2003.
Before returning to Tri-C, Dr. Johnson served as president of the Community College of Allegheny County, where he focused on strengthening the college’s core mission of providing affordable access to quality education for nearly 60,000 students annually at 9 campuses and centers in greater Pittsburgh. Dr. Johnson served previously as chancellor of Delgado Community College during Hurricane Katrina and the aftermath. While in New Orleans, he served on multiple local and regional boards and advisory committees.
Johnson has received the Pittsburgh Times Diamond Award and has been named a New Pittsburgh Courier Man of Excellence, Phi Theta Kappa President of the Year, and a Frank G. Jackson Visionary and a League for Innovation Innovator of the Year Award. There couldn’t be a finer man than Johnson to be inaugurated as President, and no better school than Tri-C (my former college) Stay tuned to TV20 for more coverage on this and many other top stories!