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2016 February - First Friday Letter

Dear friends, 

Spring semester is in full swing and Lewis-Clark State College is as excited as ever to be helping more and more students reach their higher education goals in Lewiston, Coeur d’Alene, and beyond. LCSC awarded record numbers of degrees and certificates at six of its last seven spring commencement ceremonies and we’re hopeful to see yet another impressive number this May. 

Last week LCSC administrators, faculty and staff visited Boise and the Idaho State Capitol Building for Education Week and we were once again humbled by the strong support offered by the Idaho legislature and administration. Governor C.L “Butch” Otter has put forward a number of measures to support the efforts of higher education and we support his recommendations wholeheartedly. Likewise – after presenting to the Joint Finance and Appropriations Committee, the House Education Committee, and the Senate Education Committee – we’re confident Idaho’s senators and representatives have a solid understanding and appreciation for Lewis-Clark State College and the vital role our institution plays in educating Idahoans and giving them the skills needed to support and propel Idaho industry. 

LCSC wrapped up its visit to Boise with a 13-table exhibit on the Fourth Floor of the Capitol Rotunda, where we were able show off some of the great things Lewis-Clark State has done and is doing. We thank the many legislators who took the time to meet with us one-on-one as well as those who stopped by our exhibit. I also thank Dean for Community Programs and Governmental Relations Kathy Martin for her excellent work in organizing and overseeing our visit to the Capitol. 

Education Week gave us a great opportunity to brag about our students, 862 of which earned honor roll distinction for the fall semester. LCSC boasts students from 38 of Idaho’s 44 counties, from 22 different states, and from 34 countries and we’re proud of every one of them and are excited about what their futures may hold. 

Our students learn valuable lessons both inside the class and out, and last month LCSC was honored to participate in and help host activities to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. and Idaho Human Rights Day. Around 150 volunteers, including many from LCSC student organizations and athletic teams, were on hand to complete a variety of service projects around the LC Valley. The event concluded with an excellent presentation by Malcolm Scott, an award-winning professor from Colorado State University, who talked about – and sang – some of the songs of the Civil Rights Movement. 

Another highlight last month was Governor Otter’s appointment of Erika Allen, director of College Advancement, to serve on the Idaho Commission on Hispanic Affairs. I can’t think of anyone more qualified than our very own Foundation executive director. Erika has been actively involved in many public service roles and this will only add to her exceptional resume as a leader. 

The Warrior baseball team, fresh off winning its 17th national title, begins its season this weekend with a four-team tournament at Harris Field. We wish them the best of luck this year. Before long we’ll be enjoying the Valley’s superb spring weather with the Dogwood Festival, commencement, and, of course, another thrilling Avista-NAIA World Series. If you’re on campus for any of these events, please drop by to say hello. 

Sincerely, 

J. Anthony Fernandez