What an exciting time this is to be in developmental education, to be in NADE. Your NADE Executive Board is working hard to improve programs and policies for our students. As I laid out in my inaugural speech in Anaheim in March, I have three goals for my term: increase political advocacy, professional development, and pride in our profession. They really all work together.
We are members now of a group of National Partners that includes AAACC, the Dana Center, Complete College America, Jobs for the Future, Achieving the Dream, CCRC, Education Commission of the States, and Public Agenda. We meet every few weeks and more often by phone to discuss policies and procedures to improve success for students at all levels of the educational spectrum. This is an incredible change for NADE because we are being included in discussions now at their beginning instead of just reading about them in emails and journals. My sense is that we are making a difference, and much more is to come. I will need your help as time goes on as active participants in the initiatives we will be leading through this consortium. Also, your membership helps support our participation in activities as this level, so I appreciate you for that as well.
Goal to increase the professional development NADE provides to its members
Besides the political front, I am making it a goal to increase the professional development NADE provides to its members whether through webinars or regional workshops and conferences, or through consistent publication of materials. We owe it to our students and to our profession to stay current on the literature in the field. And I know many of you are ready to conduct research of your own and contribute to the research in the field. You do not have to be in a doctoral program to do that, although Sam Houston, Texas State, and Grambling would enjoy your patronage I am sure.
Take pride in the profession you have chosen
Finally, I hope you always take pride in the profession you have chosen. Forces often move to remove access from the colleges and universities through programs that although cloaked as success initiatives are really meant to eliminate the most under resourced students in our citizenry. It is no coincidence that many of that population are also people of color and other under-represented cohorts. You are the folks who are preserving the right for all citizens to have an opportunity to learn, to grow, and to break free. Never underestimate what you do for students, and never let anyone underestimate the importance of your work. You provide opportunities for people who otherwise would not have them. That is huge, and I love you for it.
Please feel free to contact me at any time with your questions, suggestions, comments, and concerns.
—Robin Ozz, NADE President (firstname.lastname@example.org)