Name: Kathleen Watkins
Office sought: Kishwaukee College Trustee
Occupation: Retired Educator/Administrator (KEC)
Education: NIU-Masters in Education
Elected offices held: Kishwaukee College Trustee (1 six-year term)
1. Why are you running for the college board?
I am running for the college board to continue my relationship with the college. As Executive Director for the Kishwaukee Education Consortium (KEC), I worked very closely with college staff to improve programs and to create new opportunities for our high school students. After retiring, I wanted to still be a part of the work being done by the college so I ran for Trustee. Additionally, I have always felt that anyone who is elected to an office should commit to a minimum of two terms. This would be my second term.
2. What can the college do to stabilize and even increase its enrollment?
In order to stabilize and grow its enrollment, the college needs to continue its efforts to offer relevant programming, seek out students of all ages, offer scholarships, and align programming with 4 year schools and internships. For example, we will be able to certify a student has completed general education requirements even if they don’t want an associate degree. We have also added and will continue to review college sport offerings for our local high school graduates.
3. How can the college board make tuition more affordable?
The Board of Trustees continues to look for ways to make tuition more affordable. Lessening our dependence on state funds has helped us keep our budget balanced without raising tuition. To help with college costs, many courses now use texts on-line instead of purchased texts. In addition, many new scholarships have been created.
4. Are there any changes or additions you would like to see in course offerings?
All program areas should be reviewed for relevance and cost-effectiveness. I would like to see more on-line courses and new programs like e-sports.
5. How will you as a board member help to address future budget challenges?
To address future budget challenges, I will continue to commit to current and future Kish students, as well as to district taxpayers, to be able to make crucial and difficult decisions to keep our finances healthy.