In a move that validates a year’s worth of strategic planning and reorganizing, Washtenaw Community College’s Board of Trustees have given President Rose Bellanca a raise and extended her contract to 2015.
“What I love about my job is that I’m not only a CEO of a college, but I’m CEO of helping students get jobs and achieving their dreams,” Bellanca told The Washtenaw Voice. “I’m honored to continue that.”
Each year, trustees review the president’s performance and contract, according to Board Chair Pamela Horiszny.
When she was hired a year ago Bellanca was given a three-year contract. Based on her performance thus far, trustees voted on June 26 in favor of the one-year extension and two percent raise, taking her annual salary to $198,900.
However, simply using the word “satisfied” to describe her already lasting impact would be an understatement, according to Horiszny.
“Despite only being here 10 months, the board as a whole felt that she exceeded expectations in terms of performance in the priorities outlined in the presidential profile we compiled during the search process,” she said. “Certainly completion of the strategic plan was at the core of her accomplishments, but the process itself, which she designed and spearheaded, launched a number of exciting initiatives that are quickly broadening our role in the community.”
Last August, Bellanca succeeded Larry Whitworth, who served the college in that role for 13 years. Since then, Bellanca has spent the better portion of the year meeting with students and instituting new processes and goals that she feels will better suit Washtenaw’s diverse population.
Recently, some of Bellanca’s ventures have reached fruition, including a K-12 schools partnership agreement that will allow Washtenaw to offer courses in high schools for dual enrolled, as well as normally enrolled WCC students.
But Bellanca was quick to share the credit for her achievements thus far.
“I didn’t do it by myself. I’ve had a great team helping me the whole time,” she said. “It also comes down to the type of board you have. Ours is amazing. They are by far the most intelligent and respectful board of trustees I have had the opportunity to work with.”