Waubonsee Together: A New Dawn
The month of August often signals a new beginning, like the refreshing “reset button” feeling a new year can bring. It marks the start of a new academic year, presenting an opportunity to discover new interests, strive for personal or career goals, and expand one's mind and perspective. Our fall enrollment is thriving and growing, with enthusiastic students, faculty, staff, and community members eager to engage, learn, and establish meaningful connections. This is a truly thrilling time.
If you're feeling nervous and excited about starting something new as a first-time college student or returning to Waubonsee, know that you're not alone. I understand the courage it takes to embark on a new venture firsthand. Since assuming my position as the fifth President of the college earlier this year, I have undergone a similar journey. Even after six months, I remain humbled and honored as I continue to explore Waubonsee and collaborate with my colleagues on determining our best next steps in supporting our students and helping our community thrive.
Throughout the spring and summer, I embarked on a Tour de Waubonsee, visiting each of our four campus locations to engage with and gain insights from students and employees. My goal was to actively listen to various perspectives, especially those directly impacting all aspects of College affairs. There is still much more listening and learning to be done, but here’s what I can say: there is a true energy of caring and support from our faculty and staff who are always ready to assist you. I encourage you to lean into this resource, as it will make your educational experience so much more fulfilling.
Higher education, at large, is experiencing a giant shift, and at the center, new opportunities are emerging. At the Sugar Grove Campus, we have some exciting changes coming with the construction of Waubonsee's new Career and Technical Education (CTE) building. This new 100,000 sq ft space will house our Auto Body Repair, Automotive Technology, and Welding Technology Programs. It allows for increased enrollment capacities and program growth in areas like electric vehicles. It will open for classes in fall 2025. I hope you see yourself studying or taking a course in this new and dynamic place.
We continue to partner with the community to provide a high-quality, relevant education, and programming in and out of the classroom. And in the coming year, we will continue working to offer expanded food services and menus to appease various tastes and preferences. We will continue to provide opportunities to engage you and your families because Waubonsee is, after all, our community’s college.
We have many points of pride at Waubonsee, and I look forward to your being a part of them, both inside and outside the classroom. Waubonsee Class of 2023 graduates Carlos Gomez and Juan Chiu, former Student Trustee, were two of 16 high-achieving community college students to receive a 2023 Southern Illinois University Carbondale 2023 Provost's Scholarship. This award is valued at more than $31,000, which covers tuition and mandatory fees for two years. Carlos’ and Juan’s stories are just two examples of how true academic success often starts at Waubonsee – and so is within your reach as well. There’s ample space for personal development, and you can count on comprehensive support to assist you. Please take advantage of all the resources available during your student experience at Waubonsee.
This fall also marks a time for our community to celebrate my inauguration. The theme we selected is "Waubonsee Together: A New Dawn." It is meant to recognize the strength that comes when we join together as a college community while also honoring the many beginnings — institutional and personal — that are part of our rich history. Please join in the events and activities we've prepared. We are your premiere institution of learning, but most importantly, you are part of our community, and we are part of yours. The countdown to joining our community starts now. I am thrilled to meet you. We are dedicated to helping you achieve your dreams and your success. Here's our commitment to you:
- You'll be challenged.
- You'll be supported.
- You'll find resources to get you through.
- You'll find a place to belong.
You are part of our community, and we belong to yours.
We are “Waubonsee Together.”
Dr. Brian Knetl
President, Waubonsee Community College
Past communications from Dr. Knetl
There are many ways to stay connected with Dr. Knetl, President of Waubonsee. Find out what's new at Waubonsee, learn about community, state, and national events, and even catch a glimpse of what's on Dr. Knetl's reading list each month by checking out the President's Report.