Your recent editorial about the glut of ‘doctors' in the newly reorganized Gila Community College is an excellent illustration of the difference between the academically sound, professionally run college under the leadership of Dr. Barbara Ganz, and the current arrangement under the direction of Eastern Arizona College. Dr. Ganz has the professional qualifications to be hired and meet all accreditation requirements at any community college in the country.
Moreover, her extensive background in teaching and administration at several community colleges around the country gives her an understanding and a perspective on what the term ‘excellence' means in higher education.
Her high standards were reflected in many ways, including the hiring and management of personnel. Her understanding of the complexities of community college legislation, rules governing expenditures, as well as curriculum and articulation agreements with other colleges and universities put her in a position to fit in with the statewide community college network, and allowed her to protect the interests of Gila County with educators and legislators at the highest levels.
Now the majority of the governing board, together with the County Supervisors, have turned over all decision-making authority to officials at Eastern Arizona College in Graham County, and set up Gila Community College to become little more than a glorified leisure center for seniors. There are no longer any Gila Community College employees on the payroll to monitor the effectiveness, efficiency and quality of services provided, as Dr. Ganz did so well.
All the new ‘doctors' are on the Eastern Arizona College payroll, and their loyalties will be exclusively to their employer. There is an old saying that "amateurs teach amateurs to be amateurs." Let's hope this doesn't happen and, that at some point, we can get back on the path to excellence that was such an important part of Dr. Ganz' vision.
Pete Kettner, Payson