EWC president hosts first community roundtable

TORRINGTON – Several community members spent their lunch hours at Eastern Wyoming College President Lesley Travers’ first roundtable event Tuesday to brainstorm and provide feedback and ideas about improving the college.

On the topic of including the veterinary technology program in the yet-to-be-built Agricultural Technology Education Center – an idea that sparked some controversy at a recent EWC Board of Trustees meeting – Travers stuck to her guns, stating the shared space would benefit both programs.

“I think … we have a lot shining stars on this campus, and I think vet tech and ag can be two shining stars sharing a fabulous building and still doing what they need to do,” she said. “I would love nothing more than in 10 years to come back and say, ‘We’ve expanded these programs so much that we need another building,’ – that would bring me great joy in asking. But right now, I think … as the economy has tightened up, we need to look at our resources and spend them wisely … and, to me, this just seems like a pretty good marriage.”

Travers also expressed a desire to rename outreach facilities “regional learning centers” and the EWC tutoring center the “student success center” to present the offerings in a more positive light.

She emphasized the importance of student support and happiness, graduation rates, retention, and transparency, specifically in regard to the college’s budget.

Attendees brought up the issues of game attendance, the use of the old cosmetology building and reaching out to LaGrange residents.

Travers proposed moving the fitness center to the old cosmetology building and transforming the current fitness center into skyboxes for viewing home games. She also said students had suggested turning the former cosmetology building into an activity center, with pool tables and space to hold dances.

The roundtables are intended to facilitate discussion and no decisions were finalized at the event.

Travers advised attendees she has a blog at the college’s website, ewc.wy.edu, and following the path: About EWC, News and Notes From the President’s Desk.

Many attendees thanked Travers for hosting the discussion.

EWC’s community roundtables are scheduled to be held every month in the Career and Technical Education Center conference room. Travers told the Telegram she believed the inaugural event was a success.

“I was very happy to see that community members attended and there was positive discussion about what EWC can do in our community, county and our outreach areas,” she said. “This is the first of many discussions, and I hope the community continues to participate in these discussion opportunities. I am very positive about the thoughts and ideas shared today.”

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