B-CU Interim President Jackson preparing campus for Fall Semester
New programs and class structures focus on the “B-CU Experience”
By Meredith Rodriquez
DAYTONA BEACH, Fl — In approximately three months at the helm, Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU) Interim President Edison O. Jackson has made significant progress in what he calls the university’s “relentless pursuit of excellence.”
With his student-centered leadership and vision, the University family has spent the summer working diligently to ensure all personnel and programs will be in the right place and moving in the proper direction when the fall semester begins on Aug. 20.
As a first step, Jackson re-aligned his executive leadership and appointed the following members of his administrative cabinet:
· Dr. Hiram Powell serves as university provost.
· Dr. Hakim Lucas serves as vice president for institutional advancement.
· Dr. Dwaun Warmack serves as vice president for enrollment management and student development.
· Dr. Ron Dowdy serves as vice president for administrative services and fiscal affairs.
· Franklin Patterson serves as vice president for in-formation technology and chief information officer.
· Dr. Willis Walter serves as vice president for institutional research, effectiveness and planning.
· Pamela Browne, Esq., serves as vice president for human resources, regulatory and legal affairs/counsel to the president.
In other areas, Dr. Jackson has strategically placed a renewed emphasis on academic quality and charged his faculty and staff with improving the student experience at Bethune-Cookman.
“This month, approximately 3,500 students will begin to fill our campus to inch closer to-wards the fulfillment of their life’s dreams and career goals,” said Dr. Jackson. “These bright minds and ambitious spirits will be counting on us to provide an introduction to the B-CU Experience that exemplifies excellence.”
As part of the focus on the “B-CU experience,” Dr. Jackson has established a Freshman College for the 2012-13 school year. Under the leadership of Dean Michelle Thompson, the college will provide new students a comprehensive first-year experience with structured support to ensure a seamless transition from high school to higher education. Each student will be instructed on the historical context in which to view the school and the core values that are important to the institution.
With a team of dedicated faculty, staff and student success coaches who understand the unique challenges many of these students face, Freshman College provides a network of resources to help students as they matriculate so they are prepared for success in their upper-level classes.
“We are here to prepare the next generation of leaders to become equipped with the skills, tools and competencies to be change agents in their chosen field of study,” said Dr. Jackson.
Academically, Dr. Jackson immediately recognized upon his arrival a need to expand class offerings that go beyond traditional hours of operation. This fall, evening and weekend courses will allow individuals from varying backgrounds – including working professionals – seeking a bachelor’s degree to have one less obstacle to worry about. Many of these evening and weekend classes are part of a liberal studies degree program that is housed in the Division of Professional Studies. This Division will also offer certificate programs – such as legal studies – and webinars to provide professional development opportunities for the community.
“Bethune-Cookman University is a special place with a sacred mission, a beloved founder, rich vision and student-centered mission,” he said. “Over the coming weeks, we will be exemplars of excellence as we welcome our students back home.”