Office Hours with John Gardner featuring Evon Walters. Available March 12

Episode 104- Changing the Culture with Evon Walters

Office Hours with John Gardner

Evon Walters reflects on how his experience as a student coming from Jamaica to study in the US shaped his perspective on guidance. Discover the role community colleges can play in creating a guided and intentional path for student success.

His 30 years of experience in teaching, research & executive leadership, includes being a 2003 Fellow of the American Council on Education. Currently, he is the Northwest region President at the Community College of Allegheny County in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. Previous roles included President, Campus CEO and Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management. He was the recipient of the Faculty Award, for “Excellence in Scholarship” while serving as faculty and chairperson of the education department at Olivet College. In 2020, he was the recipient of the prestigious Paragon Award for New Presidents, where he was one of 28 community college presidents who were recognized by the Phi Theta Kappa national honor society. This award is given to new presidents who have shown strong support of student success by recognizing academic achievement, leadership and service among high-achieving students at their college.

During his career, he served as a systems appraiser for the Academic Quality Improvement program for the Higher Learning Commission, as well as being appointed the American Association of Community Colleges to serve as a Commissioner on their College Readiness and on Student Success. He is currently serves a three year term on the structured pathways commission. His research activities on issues associated with student success, diversity, strategic planning and enrollment management, have led to over 150 citations of his work, as well as book chapters and publications in national journals. He currently serves as a reviewer for the Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory and Practice and editor for the American Association for Advancement of Science – AAAS-IUSE’s The Disruptor Blog. He teaches within the Higher Education program at Stony Brook University, where he teaches their Community College Leadership course.

Recognized for his entrepreneurial and collaborative leadership approach, he is credited with spearheading the conceptualizing and redesign of high tech and data driven Student Success Centers and enrollment processes at three community colleges. In addition to receiving national recognition from the League of Innovation and EDUCAUSE, these initiatives led to increases in student persistence and enrollment. While at Suffolk County Community College, he was a part of an executive team that partnered with the faculty and the union leadership in spearheading advocacy efforts on behalf of the Eastern campus that led to receiving $40 million in capital funding to construct a new Learning Resource Center and a Health and Wellness facility.

In 2013, he was awarded the New York Suffolk County, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commission award and the New York Governor’s certificate of recognition for his public service and contributions to diversity in Suffolk County. Locally, he currently serves on the boards of the Northside Shore Chamber of Commerce as its Vice Chair, Propel Charter Schools as its Vice President and Secretary and Allen Place. He is also a member of Carnegie Mellon University’s “Center for Shared Prosperity”. He is involved with the Pittsburgh Region Talent Coalition and the Chamber’s Northside Works Committee on Workforce development.

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