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From the President

Posted: Wednesday, November 20, 2019

President’s Institutional Innovation Advisory Council Membership

I am pleased to announce the following appointments to the President’s Institutional Innovation Advisory Council (IIAC):

Jonathan Hulbert, Director of Leadership and Organizational Development, Professional Development Center

Administrative Team
William Benfanti, Associate Vice President for Government Relations, Institutional Advancement
Benjamin Christy, Dean, School of Arts and Humanities 
Jerod Dahlgren, Communications Director, Marketing and Communications
Rebecca Eggleston, Professional Development Assistant, Professional Development Center
Khaleel Gathers, Deputy CIO and Director of Technology Planning and Outreach, Information Technology
Susan McCartney, Director, Small Business Development Center
Crystal Rodriguez, Chief of Staff,  President’s Office
Jocelyn Tejeda, Senior EOP Counselor, Educational Opportunity Program
Jamie Warnes, Manager of Classified Employment and Employee Relations, Human Resource Management

Research Team
Jeremy Bohonos, Assistant Professor, Adult Education 
John Cabra, Professor, Center for Studies in Creativity 
Joaquin Carbonara, Professor, Mathematics
Atta Ceesay, Associate Professor, Political Science
Robert Delprino, Assistant Dean, School of Natural and Social Sciences
Mohan Devgun, Chair and Professor, Engineering Technology
Gerard Puccio, Chair and Professor, Center for Studies in Creativity 
John Torrey, Assistant Professor, Philosophy 
Jing Zhang, Associate Professor of Elementary Education, Literacy, and Educational Leadership  

College Senate Representatives
Maria Brickhouse, Coordinator, EOP Academic Center for Excellence; Chair, College Senate Faculty and Staff Welfare Committee 
Julian Cole, Associate Professor, Philosophy; Chair, College Senate Bylaws and Elections Committee

In my Opening Year Address, I noted that higher education is undergoing significant demographic and technological shifts, which will require us to change how our institution operates, how we collaborate across departments and divisions to solve institutional challenges (retention, enrollment, developing new revenue streams, etc.), and how we prepare our campus workforce to address the ever-changing challenges of the future. To examine these challenges and questions, I have appointed representatives from each division and faculty with expertise in the content areas being examined (organizational development, workforce planning, innovation, organizational psychology, etc.) to serve on the IIAC.

The IIAC is charged with helping assess and analyze institutional data, policies, and processes and making recommendations to the president and the cabinet to help inform their decision-making for the following challenges:

  • What are the campus’s strengths, challenges, opportunities, and threats in terms of organizational culture, employee engagement and satisfaction, workforce development, organizational agility, and institutional innovation, and how do they affect institutional performance- What strategies and initiatives can further improve institutional performance by leveraging these factors-
  • How do we assess and build institutional capacity (workforce development, organizational structure, process improvement, organizational agility, technology infrastructure, etc.) to support new campus initiatives, programs, and strategies identified in the strategic plan-
  • How can Buffalo State College be more intentionally innovative and agile as an institution to quickly adapt to meet market needs and demands-

To begin examining these questions, the first project IIAC will be charged with from fall 2019 to fall 2020 is administering a Campus Culture and Employee Engagement and Satisfaction Study using the “Great Colleges to Work for Survey.”

Additionally, the IIAC will be developing systems and structures for faculty and staff members to share and cultivate innovative ideas to help Buffalo State thrive in the twenty-first century. More information regarding these opportunities will be shared in the coming months.