Several members of Tarrant County College leadership, including the Chancellor and the Board of Trustees, recently attended the annual conference of the Community College Association of Texas Trustees (CCATT). According to Nicole Eversmann, director of CCATT, the conference is “the cornerstone event that brings trustees, regents, presidents and chancellors, conference sponsors, association leaders, and philanthropic organizations together to share important collaborations, policies, and practices—all aimed at improving community college governance, academic outcomes, and workforce opportunities.”
The theme of this year’s conference was “Inspiring Innovation: Community College Governance for the Future,” highlighting how community colleges can leverage new technologies to amplify student success. Presentations focused on data-informed governance, emerging practices related to the use of artificial intelligence in higher education, and scaling collaboration efforts with industry partners to expand work-based learning opportunities and address regional skills gaps.
TCC Board Secretary Jeannie Deakyne praised the conference, saying the greatest value for her as a trustee was the opportunity to collaborate with other community college boards from across the state. “Each board has a unique perspective on how to govern their college district, largely informed by the issues, environment, and the people they are serving,” she said. “But we also have a lot in common, so it was valuable to learn how other boards are also being strategic about tuition, workforce development, and removing barriers to access.”
Additionally, Deakyne considers participating in the panel discussion on TCC’s approach to the current bond program a highlight of the event. “As a board member who is deeply involved in understanding the projects, timelines and budget for our bond-related construction, I was proud to work with John Posch, bond program director, and Dr. Gwendolyn Morrison, board member, on the panel presentation on TCC’s bond management.”
Deakyne believes TCC’s board members should be lifelong learners. “Conferences like CCATT give us the opportunity to be well-informed and current on board best practices,” she said. “I’m grateful for the investment TCC makes in me as a trustee every day and look forward to learning more about how I can best serve our students, faculty, staff, and constituents during future conferences.”