On Thursday, December 8, Midland College (MC) held a special luncheon to recognize
and congratulate employees who had completed the College’s inaugural leadership professional
development series. The luncheon was held in the Scharbauer Student Center Carrasco
Room on the main MC campus at 3600 N. Garfield in Midland.
The 16-week training developed by Dr. Lee Grimes, MC dean of Instructional Support
Services, and Dr. Will Torres, director of the MC Teaching & Learning Center, was
based on the book The Leadership Challenge by Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner. Employees
participating in the class attended sessions on Thursday afternoons every two weeks.
Grimes and Torres facilitated the sessions and led participants through learning
the neuroscience of leadership, applying positive psychology, discovering behavioral
styles, setting goals, increasing productivity, managing time and giving and receiving
Participant requirements included full engagement in the academy through the completion
of a series of assignments and exercises designed to encourage reflection and application
of leadership practices and strategies. These included required leadership coaching
sessions with academy facilitators, goal setting, group presentations and completion
of assessments designed to enhance self-awareness and seeing things from other people’s
Staff in MC’s Teaching & Learning Center coordinated all aspects of the Leadership
Academy, and MC employees participating in the program included faculty from various
academic/transfer programs and staff from student services, library and continuing
“We started MC’s Teaching and Learning Center about three years ago in order to provide
professional and organizational development for all faculty and staff at Midland College.,”
Dr. Steve Thomas, MC president, explained. “Since that time, the center staff has
worked hard to provide employees with the tools and support they need to serve our
students. We established the Leadership Academy because it’s important that we invest
in our employees and develop leadership potential in them.”
Midland College also encourages employee growth through its tuition reimbursement
program, which allows employees to seek advanced degrees by providing course tuition
through the Midland College Foundation Chaparral Circle Endowment Fund.
Photo: Midland College inaugural Leadership Academy participants and facilitators.
Pictured front row left to right: Maggie Middleton, Ginger Schantz, Doug Whitman,
Leslie Goodrum, Jessica Struck, Monica Reyes, Vicky Macias and Brianna Barnard. Pictured
back row left to right: Dr. Will Torres, program facilitator; Kevin Goldsmith; Dr.
William ‘Chris’ Brown; Ty Soliz; Dr. Steve Thomas, MC president; Jacqueline January;
Victoria Santiago; Khalinn Poole; Sheena Thompson; Josefina Samaguey; and Dr. Lee
Grimes, program facilitator