By Jacquelyn Zeman – Managing/News Editor
The provost finalist forums continued today with Grand Rapids Community College’s only internal candidate, Laurie Chesley.
For the past four years, Chesley has served as the Dean for the School of Arts and Sciences. She has been at GRCC for a total of 10 years. The forum began with Chesley presenting the plan for improvement at GRCC that she would implement if she is offered the position of provost.
The plan highlighted the importance of GRCC connecting more with students, making better clarity of pathways and processes for students, and improving the quality of how the school is run. This included budget and finance plans to continue to make GRCC an affordable choice as a two-year institution.
“I think part of my role as a provost would be to work with student life, student activities to help them put student learning at the forefront of their decisions in addition to student fun,” Chesley said. “I know they do that…but I think a provost job is to sort of provoke more thought about those issues.”
Chesley believes she would be able to serve GRCC as a strong advocate for students.
“My job is to support students in that way for institutional decision making,” Chesley said. “I have lived in my own experience how important college can be in someone’s life. I wish everyone at college would have the wonderful, eye opening, exciting experience I had out of college.”
GRCC’s Coordinator of Retention, Chris Sain Jr., said he has had a positive experience working with Chesley and sees her a “visionary leader.”
“She has enough fortitude to expand where the college needs to go,” Sain said. “She is assessable, she is reachable. I support her.”
The final provost candidate forum will be hosted at 3:15 p.m. Friday when Bill Pink will give his presentation in the Applied Technology Center auditorium.
To view Chesley’s forum, visit GRCCtv’s YouTube link.
Kayla Tucker, A&E/Features Editor contributed to this story.