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Lansing Community College Trustee 6 -Year Term {_getChooseLabel(this.selections.length)}

Lansing Community College, six-year terms, vote for 3

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  • Candidate picture

    Alex Azima

  • Candidate picture

    Ryan Buck

  • Angela L. Mathews

  • Robert Proctor

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Biographical Information

What makes you more qualified than other candidates for this office?

Has the board done enough to keep tuition affordable? Please explain your response.

Do you believe LCC has a good working relationship with the city of Lansing? Please explain your response.

What would you do to continue or improve this relationship? Please explain your response.

Do you support LCC’s initiative to acquire property around the downtown campus? Please explain your response.

Does LCC achieve the proper balance between academic college-track programs and vocational/job-training programs? Please explain your response.

Has LCC done enough to address student parking issues? Please explain your response.

Does LCC have enough full time faculty? Please explain your response.

Are LCC’s remedial math and reading programs appropriate? Please explain your response.

Are you current in all tax, alimony and child support obligations? If not, please explain.

Hometown Delta Township
Education BS in Physics (MIT), MS in Physics (MSU), Doctoral Level Physics & Teaching/Learning Research (MSU)
Family Wife, three children, two grand children, and three dogs!
Professional Experience Physics Professor at LCC for 39 Years - Now Retired, Former President of the LCC Academic Senate, Former President of two statewide science education organizations, Previously Nuclear Defense Physicist for the State of Michigan and Radiation Health Physicist at Consumers Power Company
Political Experience Current LCC Trustee
Campaign Website http://AzimaForLCC.com
Having taught at LCC for 39 years, and having served as the LCC Academic Senate President during my last two years at LCC, and now serving as an LCC Trustee, has enabled me to see the College from many different perspectives. I understand the need for resources required to help employees work effectively. I will work to make the needed resources available and I will stand behind our great employees in their efforts to make sure every student succeeds in reaching his or her goal. As the Academic Senate President, I worked hard to promote collaboration between faculty, staff, and administration. If elected, I will continue my efforts to promote collaboration across the College.
It is important to keep tuition affordable, while ensuring quality education for all students. Until the recent raise, tuition at LCC was tied with another community college as the lowest in the state! Responding to the identified student support needs, the Board has minimally increased tuition, earmarking over one third of the increase for the purpose providing extensive student support services, which will lead to increased retention and student success and completion rates. At the same time, the Board has encouraged and supported a faculty-driven initiative to lower the cost of textbooks through the use of Open Educational Resources (OERs). OERs are free, quality educational resources.
Yes, especially with the Lansing mayor's office. But I believe more needs to be done to promote conversations with the College's neighboring communities. Please see the response to the next question.
I was instrumental in getting my LCC Board of Trustees colleagues to agree to have Campus & Community Engagement meetings every other month to promote dialog. This will allow the Board to communicate more effectively with the community, to hear any concerns, and to provide updates to the community.
Only if done in close consultation with the neighborhoods which would be affected and if it is good for the community. It is important for the College to engage the community in discussions when acquiring property.
Yes. The College continuously reviews its courses and programs to ensure that they are relevant to the needs of the community, both in terms of the quality as well as the number of courses and types of programs offered. Often, courses and programs are offered in response to business and industry needs. And of course LCC offers many quality transfer programs for those wishing to further their education at 4-year institutions.
Over the years, the College has tried many solutions to the parking problem, including acquiring or leasing more parking space, encouraging share-a-rides, and so on. However, the problem still persists and is continually being worked on.
I believe the current ratio of part-time to full-time faculty is too high. More full-time faculty are needed to ensure stability of programs. However, improving the ratio will need substantial increase in funding, which will adversely affect students through increases in tuition. Therefore, a delicate balance must be struck between improving the ratio and keeping tuition affordable.
I believe it is appropriate for the College to offer remedial programs for those who need it, in order to prepare them for college-level work. These programs are currently being reviewed by our faculty to ensure they are current and that they reflect best practices.
Yes, I am current on my taxes and have no other obligations.
Hometown Ishpeming, MI
Education Bachelor of Science, Central Michigan University; Juris Doctor, Michigan State University College of Law
Professional Experience Private Practice, 1 year; Chief Deputy Court Clerk, 2 years
Political Experience Intern/Interim Legislative Assistant, Office of State Representative Barb Byrum
Campaign Website http://www.buck4lcc.com
I believe I am qualified because I understand the effects of crushing student debt all too personally. I also perform extensive hiring in my day job, so I know the type of job-ready candidates that I am looking for in an LCC graduate.
The Board of Trustees recently raised tuition by more than 12%, justifying the new rate on increasing efforts to raise the retention and success rates of LCC students. The jury is still out on the success of this initiative, so we will see whether the Board has done enough to keep tuition affordable as we progress through the next few semesters. If elected, I will keep a keen eye on the College’s bottom line, because the success of LCC correlates directly with the success of its students.
I believe that LCC and Lansing’s working relationship could use a tune up. LCC’s main campus is integral to downtown Lansing. Moreover, LCC’s west campus falls within the city’s boundaries. As such, many of the issues LCC faces parallels with issues that Lansing faces. Therefore, it is in both LCC and Lansing’s interests to work in a more collaborative manner.
I believe the relationship between LCC and Lansing, but also other cities and townships and the local counties, can be improved by increased collaboration and communication between stakeholders. None of the entities I have mentioned operate in a bubble. One idea is to create internship opportunities with the local government units. Having LCC students learn and work in the real operations of government will increase the connectivity between LCC, Lansing, and the other government units. This would also allow the students to have a voice in how their government operates.
I would support LCC’s initiative to acquire new properties if it could not identify sufficient space within its current properties. I believe we need to be careful with the idea of acquiring new properties because it comes with a host of consequences, some of which include (1) initial cost to purchase, (2) renovation costs, (3) ongoing maintenance, utility, and security costs, and (4) the fact that LCC would take the property off the tax rolls. Part of LCC’s revenue is derived from the property tax that is collected from taxable properties.
I believe that LCC has a large array of available coursework for those who want to continue on to 4-year degree-granting institution and those who are seeking to earn a trade or vocation. I believe the overarching issue is making sure our educators have the training and tools to invest in the success of their students, and are fairly compensated for their efforts.
No, I do not believe LCC has done enough to address the student parking issues. This is an issue that affects employees as well. Since LCC’s main campus is in downtown Lansing, the parking issues also affect the surrounding neighborhood as well. The increased traffic in the area and difficulty in rapid access to the Gannon Ramp are chronic problems that still need to be addressed.
I believe students succeed better with full-time faculty members because full-time faculty are able to dedicate more time to their students because their position with LCC is their primary mission. I do not believe that LCC has enough full-time faculty, and if elected, I will work to find a better balance between the number of full-time and adjunct faculty.
Yes, I believe they are appropriate. LCC students come from a wide variety of backgrounds and educational levels. The reality is that not every student has the necessary math/reading competency to succeed in their adult life. I believe that offering these courses at LCC provides a chance for our students to invest in themselves and starts them on their path to success.
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