It’s Been a Heck of a Year

It’s Been a Heck of a Year

 It seems that things like blogs, television shows, and magazines have significant things like the top ten items of the year or person of the year.  Well, not this blog.  I don’t have the talent of David Letterman’s writers to give you a top ten list and as for the person of the year, no problem it is Ron Santo, great baseball player, great announcer, and most importantly a loyal Cub’s fan.

 So I thought I would mention some of the UPCEA highlights based on my memory.

 -the financial situation for higher education started out poorly and just got worse. Despite this and due to the hard work of the UPCEA national office, our association remained strong;

 -we voted to change the name of our association  to University Professional and Continuing Education Association because it better reflects the work of most of our units, and better positions the association to draw new members;

-we thanked Kay Kohl for 25 years of leadership and wished her the best in her new adventures;

-we also thanked Pat Book for her leadership as President and welcomed Judy Ashcroft as our new President;

-as President, Judy appointed an excellent search committee for our new CEO/Executive Director and provided superb leadership to this hard working group in finding our new CEO/Executive Director;

-we were very fortunate in hiring Robert Hansen as our new CEO/Executive Director, who didn’t wait for his start date to begin working on behalf of the association and he has never looked back;

-we said goodbye way too soon to our friend and colleague Tim Sloate;

-somewhere along the way I started writing this blog, Shaeffer’s Forays: Advocates for Access, Affordability, and Accountability, which has, more than anything, served as an opportunity for me to think out loud;

-and we’ve seen any number of reports this year showing the important link between education and economic health and the crucial role professional and continuing education units can play in making education accessible and affordable.

Yes, it has been a heck of a year and while it appears that the only constant in the world seems to be change; one thing that has remained constant is the enduring positive, forward looking approach that each of you bring in addressing the many challenges higher education faces.

On behalf of my wife Peggy and me, we wish you and yours a safe and happy holiday.

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