Bishop State Community College is reaching new heights in serving its students and community, Interim President Reginald Sykes said Thursday.
Speaking at the Bishop State Foundation’s scholarship gala, Dr. Sykes highlighted a number of recent accomplishments and milestones. Among them:
- Seven students were recently honored at NASA’s 27th Annual Scholarship & Fellowship Awards Ceremony in Huntsville.
- The campus’ STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) club placed 2nd overall at the inaugural Alabama Mathematics Tournament.
- Bishop State’s dual enrollment program is currently serving more than 300 high school students.
- Bishop State formed a partnership with MAAS Aviation to paint airplanes for Airbus and has trained 19 individuals so far.
- In collaboration with the Mobile Airport Authority, Bishop State was the first Alabama community college to purchase CATIA engineering design software – a powerful 3D design tool for high-quality air, sea and land vehicles — for its drafting and design technology program.
- Bishop State worked with Mobile Chamber’s Growth Alliance Task Force to host four workshops that attracted more than 560 people interested in starting or expanding a small business.
Moving forward, Dr. Sykes is continuing to work to ensure that Bishop State uses resources wisely and invests them in programs that return the greatest dividends for students, employers and taxpayers.
In consultation with the Alabama Community College System leadership, Bishop State has in recent months evaluated its programs and identified those that were less successful based on student enrollment, operational costs and efficiencies, and industry workforce needs.
As a result of that evaluation, Bishop State is moving to eliminate five programs: sign language, jewelry design and watch repair, civil engineering technology, plumbing, and funeral services.
The 27 students enrolled in those programs will be allowed to complete their studies, but no further students will be enrolled. Four faculty positions will be affected.
This will allow Bishop State to focus on programs that are in greater demand both in terms of students and prospective employers, Dr. Sykes said.
“Student success is at the center of all we do at Bishop State,” Dr. Sykes said. “We know that if our students succeed in completing their goals at Bishop, the whole community benefits.”
The scholarship gala took place at the Mobile Marriott. Among other things, the event honored Oliver H. Delchamps as a distinguished humanitarian and the Foundation’s chairman emeritus. Mr. Delchamps has been a major contributor to the Foundation as well as the Mobile community as a whole.
Dr. Sykes expressed gratitude to Mr. Delchamps and the Foundation for their continued support.
“The Foundation generates the external recognition, support and financial resources the college needs to carry out its mission of serving students,” Dr. Sykes said.
Under Dr. Sykes, Bishop State’s goal is to be a college of choice for students, employer of choice for employees, and a partner of choice for business and industry.
“We strive every day to reach these goals,” Dr. Sykes said. “With the hard work of our own people and our partners in the community, we are making remarkable progress, and the best is yet to come.”