Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Longest serving community college president in the nation!

Well, I was going to go down to Occupy Wall Street, to hand around with the young people and brush up on my drumming and chanting skills—seriously, I approve of drumming and chanting, and I am looking forward to that and will make my way down there Friday—but remembered that today is the day that we will hear, at Westchester Community College, from Dr. Joseph Hankin, our president, who has been on the job since 1971.

Hankin is currently the longest serving community college president in the nation. 

So he's been there for forty years, not so long, say, as Queen Elizabeth, who still reigns as monarch over, let's see, England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Cornwall—do you know that the Duke of Cornwall is also the Prince of Wales: outrageous!—Canada (including Quebec), Australia, New Zealand, Jamaica, Barbados, the Bahamas, Granada, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tuvulau, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the Falkland Islands (?)—all, right, whew!—but beating out Queen Margrethe of Denmark and Sheikh Sultan bin Mohamed Al-Qassimi of Sharjah.

At 11 a.m. we will hear the State of the College Address from Dr. Hankin, and that’s exciting. There’s a NYSUT (AFT affiliate) meeting at 1, and then, after that, the whole campus will be in something of a tizzy getting ready for the evening’s big celebration, which is being called “Dr. Hankin’s 40th Anniversary Festival” on the WCC website. Not as ostentatious, by any means, as Lord Curzon’s 1903 Delhi Durbar, the fete will nonetheless be pretty snazzy, and aims to collect several hundreds of thousand dollars for a student scholarship fund.

Such scholarships are more and more integral to the functioning of our systems of higher education, as more and more people realize that the traditional link between higher education and the ability to pay back federally guaranteed loans has been broken. Frankly, in this regard, I was kind of hoping that the monies collected would go to a relief fund for adjuncts at WCC, who do about 85% of the teaching and who probably will be, most of them, unable to attend this evening’s celebration because it conflicts with their 2nd or 3rd jobs.

Be that as it may, I myself will be teaching anthropology in the northernmost corner of our beautiful county, and so cannot be there tonight. I will update you on the State of the College address.

Cheers, Dr. Alan Trevithick

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