Message from the President
The pursuit of quality associated with this award requires a tremendous amount of work and determination. I believe that a commitment to outcomes and assessment reveals not only the mindset of an institution, but also its heart. Howard Community College has a passion to help students succeed and to ‘discover their greatness,’ as our mission states. That’s what motivates the college’s tireless pursuit of quality. And that’s why it is so gratifying to receive this award, because it really is all about the students.
Numerous people deserve recognition for this accomplishment.
First, I must acknowledge the faculty and staff of Howard Community College. HCC’s quest for quality began when the college first opened its doors in 1970. From those earliest days, HCC implemented a systematic program that would measure student performance beyond term papers and test scores. Our educators explored ways to determine whether students had absorbed the contents of their courses, and then, using this data, make adjustments to improve their teaching.
HCC’s student outcomes assessment program was one of the first of its kind. The concept has gained traction in higher education over the past decades, but HCC faculty and staff were – and still are -- leaders among their peers.
Second, I applaud the faculty and staff who have been leaders in the application of Baldrige principles in particular.
These individuals are largely responsible for HCC’s steady progression over the past decade. As a member of the national Continuous Quality Improvement Network (CQIN) since 1999, HCC first applied Baldrige criteria to improve only single processes. We expanded our scope and eventually applications analyzing all college operations were submitted to the Maryland Performance Excellence Award program. We received MPEA Bronze awards in 2002 and 2003, a silver in 2006, and now this – thanks to the perseverance and dedication of these faculty and staff.
“FIRE IT UP!” is our rallying cry for quality, and these folks keep that fire stoked!
And last, I want to recognize the HCC Board of Trustees. They truly have been champions of quality for the college, putting their full support behind the initiatives and providing invaluable guidance and leadership. They are extremely generous of their time, and their dedication to quality adds to their countless hours of service to the college. Every board meeting includes an examination of at least one of their quality indicators, which is a remarkable sign of commitment.
Why should students care that HCC won the U.S. Senate Productivity Award? Three reasons:
It is evidence of our commitment to provide the best quality education. Nobody requires us to participate in performance excellence programs. But we do it because it is the best way to improve ourselves.
When the college looks good, you look good. On your future applications and resumes, you can state that you attended a college that received Maryland’s top award for performance excellence.