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Pitt State begins new year with Opening Meeting for Faculty

Dr. Howard Smith, the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, asking President Scott about his vision for Pittsbug State this coming school year. The opening meeting for staff and faculty was held on Thursday in the Bicknell Center. Libby Davis

Hannah Reel reporter 

On Aug. 12, 2021, The Bicknell Family Center for the Arts hosted the Pitt State Opening for Faculty regarding the 2021-2022 school year. 

The Opening Meeting was hosted by President Scott and other selected faculty members. Mary Jo Meier, President of the Unclassified Professional Senate, and director of development for College of Arts and Sciences expressed the mission of the Unclassified Professional Senate. In addition, Mary Jo Meier gave recognition to new faculty members and faculty who had changed positions recently. There was a group of faculty members, which were recognized for varying number of years of service. Years of service were categorized by 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35 years.

“We serve as a liaison to the university administration and the Kansas Board of Regents, and we formulate recommendations to the university president,” said Meier. “23 elected senators work together representing various groups of unclassified professional staff. The Senate meets on the first Wednesday of each month at 2 p.m. in the Meadowlark Room of the Overman Student Center. The first meeting will be Wednesday, Sep. 1st.” 

The Unclassified Professional Senate welcomes all to their first meeting held on Sep. 1st. The meeting will express the purpose of the senate, introduce the members, and the goals for Pittsburg State. 

President Scott proclaimed the “respect and admiration” he had for the faculty during the difficult times of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

“Well, I think everybody on the campus was going to have some challenges as we enter this semester because of the delta variant being so prevalent,” Scott said. “So, I ask people to do what we always ask them to do and that’s to take care of our students, challenge them, support them, and engage with them. Just like they have always done over the years and there will be a lot of moments that we will have to make discussions about being a little more lenient and being a little more strict. I just hope that they take individual student’s concerns into consideration. Because everybody going to have a lot going on and it will be a lot of challenges.” 

During the meeting, Scott explained that this will be his last year as president for Pittsburg State. Steve Scott has been president of this university for 12 years. 

“…This (the meeting) is one of my favorite things of the year,” Scott said. “It is because I believe so much in the importance of the community and universities have to vary different roles… So, for a couple of days of the year, couple moments of the year, we come together as one. I just think it’s a very powerful moment. I love the day. I love the people. I know so many of them so well and I’ve known them for years… It’s not really just for me, but it’s an important day for Pitt State. That’s what motivates me.”

Faculty and staff from throughout the university attended the meeting including Erin Rivero, assistant director of admissions. 

“I am a local girl on the Missouri side, so I was never going to come here,” Rivero said. “To be able to say, that I was dead set against Pitt State, and I loved it so much coming here. The community, the athletics, the campus community as well. That now I share that passion with other students. To be able to just keep doing that and helping them find their own passion. Their own place at Pittsburg State. To go forward and change the world and just pursue their dreams; that’s exciting for me.”

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