My wife and I left a dynamic college turned university in British Columbia, Canada, to enhance our careers in Southern California. While she joined the University of California Riverside, a natural progression, I chose COD for one main reason. I wanted to get back into the educational field that is inextricably linked with its community on a local and global basis.
Little did I know at the beginning how the bond program not only had the ability to fund the upgrade and expansion of the Palm Desert campus; but, also the development of four new campuses, two in the east Valley and two in the west. This gave me the greatest opportunity to reach out to and engage the community that I could never have dreamt of.
A good deal of my day was spent trying to balance the COD operating budget in the time of a huge state fiscal crisis that represented an enormous challenge to our very mission. The rest of the day was spent looking to the longer term and developing the facilities and infrastructure that would serve the Coachella Valley for decades to come. At times my tasks seemed at odds with one another; but, I took the view that both were crucial to the development and well-being of COD and that neither outranked the other. Successful accomplishment of both would significantly contribute to student success and community engagement. And that is why I came to COD in the first place.