|Job description||The Board of Trustees is the governing body of Tarrant County College District. Term is six years.|
|Duties||Sets district goals and priorities
Adopts and reviews district policies
Provides final approval for District policies, budget, faculty and staff appointments, construction, and other District operations
Approves levying of taxes within the District, for construction of physical facilities and for District operations
|Meetings||Monthly board meetings; special meetings called as needed.|
|TCCD contact information||Contact Filing Officer
|Conrad C. Heede (incumbent)||Website: http://www.conradcheede.com/
|Shannon Wood||Email: firstname.lastname@example.org|
Recent News Articles
- “$825M bond, ‘liberal indoctrination’ are Tarrant County College issues, candidates say,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Apr 26, 2021) https://www.star-telegram.com/news/politics-government/election/voter-guide/article250954894.html (paywall – article limit)
- “Tarrant County College District 2 candidates in May 1 election,” Fort Worth Star-Telegram (Apr 23, 2021) https://www.star-telegram.com/news/politics-government/election/voter-guide/article250896259.html (paywall – article limit)
|1. WHY ARE YOU THE BEST QUALIFIED CANDIDATE?|
|Conrad C. Heede
TCCD is the 17th largest college in the US, touches 100,000 students, and has a $428 million Operating Budget. We are managing a $825 million Bond Program to build new/renovate old buildings, improve infrastructure, install new technologies and redesign classrooms to create safe, secure, energy-efficient, motivating learning environments for our students and faculty. We are also instituting an innovative Operating Philosophy that will make us more efficient and effective. To accomplish these efforts. Trustees need to be proven, experienced in business, trained, educated and dedicated leaders.
I have served on the Board for ten years and been President the last two years. I have been on every TCCD committee and am also on the TCC Foundation Board, serving on the Investment Committee. I have been active in our Community College Association of Texas Trustees, serving on two committees and in our national Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) serving on three committees. I have earned the ACCT Certification of Completion for Trustee Training, having participated in all required training and educational seminars and conferences. Attendance at these meetings has helped me learn the "best practices" for community colleges and to bring back the best of these ideas and practices to TCCD.
I own/manage four successful real estate businesses and am a Commercial Realtor.
I earned BS & MS degrees in Chemistry from Holy Cross College, completed all course work for a PhD in Chemistry at U. of Arizona and earned a MBA from Northeastern University.
I taught Chemistry at Holy Cross and at Arizona. I also taught/trained incoming Rotary club presidents and district governors for 15+ years.
In Rotary, I served as club president and as a district governor, directing 64 Rotary clubs.
I served in the US Naval Medical Service Corps as a Lieutenant, Biochemist and in hospital administration.
|2. WHAT ARE THE CURRENT NEEDS OF YOUR DISTRICT AND WHAT ARE YOUR PRIORITIES FOR ADDRESSING THEM?|
|Conrad C. Heede
TCCD is one college and Trustees represent the entire District. Our current needs include properly administrating our $825 Million Bond Program so we build buildings that are adaptable, sustainable, and technologically advanced to last 50+ years. This work needs to be done on-time and on-budget so that we will not have to increase our tax rate to service this debt.
We are also in the process of fully implementing our 3 Goals,8 Principles Operating Philosophy that is the result of fours years of work by the students, faculty, administration and Board analyzing where we are and where we want/need to go and determining how we are going to get there. This will revolutionize TCCD and take us to a new level of efficiency and effective education and workforce skills training.
We also have substantial, valuable real estate that we need to utilize for the maximum benefit to our students and institution. My background in real estate investment and business development will help this effort.
|3. WHAT POLICIES SHOULD YOUR DISTRICT PURSUE WITH REGARD TO SCHOOL SAFETY?|
|Conrad C. Heede
Our on-going concerns for student safety, heightened by the pandemic, has led up to consider several new options. Our new buildings should be constructed to be very energy-efficient and built to withstand heavy storms; they need to be technologically advanced, "smart" buildings that monitor and provide data on air quality, student density, occupancy; and are capable to provide instant information on significant problems like an active shooter or a fire, that can be coordinated with the police and fire departments so the location of the problem related to how many students and faculty are threatened and where they are located can be provide in real time.
We have our own campus police force and they are continually trained on the latest techniques and have the best possible equipment to do their jobs. Our TCCD Risk Managers continually monitor how prepared we are for any traumatic situation and they coordinate with all other law enforcement and fire departments to ensure effective, coordinated responses to any dangers.
|4. HOW SHOULD TECHNOLOGY AND VIRTUAL LEARNING BE UTILIZED POST-PANDEMIC? WHAT LESSONS DID WE LEARN FROM THE 2020-2021 SCHOOL YEAR THAT CAN BE APPLIED TO IMPROVE THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM?|
|Conrad C. Heede
TCCD was fortunate in that when the pandemic caused the school shutdowns, we already had the software to teach virtually, thanks to our online campus, TCC Connect. It was relatively easy to switch to online education since we already had the courses available in that format. The teachers and students had to learn how to use the system and that took a lot of adjustment but now is running quite smoothly.
I believe that even when we go back to the "new normal" in-person classes, virtual learning is here to stay. More students will have become comfortable with online learning and that provides a great deal of flexibility to their class scheduling and attendance. Technology allows for so many opportunities previously not thought of - guest lecturers, virtual tours, international participation, etc. I suspect that virtual learning, which was already a growing trend, will be greatly enhanced and may become part of all education.
|5. WHAT IMPACTS HAS THE PANDEMIC HAD ON STUDENTS, AND WHAT MEASURES SHOULD BE IMPLEMENTED TO OFFSET THOSE IMPACTS?|
|Conrad C. Heede
Once the pandemic hit, TCCD, like other schools were shutdown for all classes except for a few that could not be taught online, such as biology labs, welding, culinary arts, etc. but even those were cut down due to COVID protocols for proper spacing, face masks, etc.
The shutdowns hurt many students, particularly those who were only familiar with in-person education. The students had to learn how to use the online systems and that took a lot of adjustment but now is running quite smoothly. TCCD provided computers and mobile hot spots to students who did not have access to that equipment and also provided the training when necessary.
Additional tutoring and supplemental instruction has been offered to the students and additional classes will be scheduled for the summer, as needed.
|6. THE 2020-2021 SCHOOL YEAR HAS BEEN UNIQUE FOR TEACHERS AS WELL AS STUDENTS. WHAT IMPACTS HAS THIS HAD ON TEACHERS AND WHAT MEASURES SHOULD BE IMPLEMENTED TO ADDRESS THEM?|
|Conrad C. Heede
Some of the same problems occurred with our teachers. Although we had the majority of the courses on our online system, thanks to our TCC Connect Campus operation, teachers had to adjust to a completely new way of teaching (for them).
Training was provided to all teachers requiring such and, as with the students, they were also provided with computers and mobile hot spots when needed.
The issues have all been addressed but a complete analysis will be done once we return to "normal" and we anticipate that new policies and procedures will be put into place for the future.
We will begin in-person classes again this Fall. Our teachers and staff will be brought back on campus in an organized, phased-in schedule.
|7. WHAT ARE YOUR SPECIFIC BUDGET PRIORITIES AND HOW WILL YOU BALANCE COMPETING BUDGETARY INTERESTS?|
|Conrad C. Heede
My personal priorities are to keep taxes and tuition as low as possible consistent with continuing to provide easily accessible high quality education and workforce skills training at an affordable cost. We have reduced the tax rate by 13% over the last six years and kept the tuition at the same low level for the past three years. Our tuition remains the 8th lowest of the top ten community colleges in Texas.
The budget is prepared by the Chancellor and the staff subject to the new 3 Goals, 8 Principles guidelines. The competing budgetary interests are weighed and examined by the entire administration operating as One College. The resulting budget is presented to the Board for our review and input over a 3-4 month time period and once a final version is completed, the Board approves it.
|8. HOW SHOULD THE BOARD ADDRESS DISPARITIES IN ACCESS TO EDUCATION, TECHNOLOGY, AND RESOURCES FOR DISADVANTAGED STUDENTS AND PARTICULARLY STUDENTS OF COLOR?|
|Conrad C. Heede
The student body is roughly 59% female, 41% male; and 34.5% white, 34.2% Hispanic and 17.8% Black/African American. The expressed concerns are addressed:
1. Education experts have stated that the disparities in education can be largely eradicated if the faculty "looks like" the student body. We are close but continue to strive to be there 100%
2. The tuition rate kept low to provide easy access for all students and particularly the disadvantaged.
3. Greatly improved on-boarding procedures as part of our 3G8P operating philosophy. Includes a required new student orientation and a one-stop shop so that students can register, apply for student aid and obtain counseling in one location.
4. We have a vibrant Early College High School Program, involving partnerships with 17 ISDs (soon to be 22) in Tarrant County. High school students are selected by their counselors to be offered this special program. They are typically first in college in their families, from disadvantaged families, are minority and yet they have exhibited a desire and ability to learn and have goals to succeed. They are all considered at risk - and it is estimated that without this program 40 to 50% of them would become high school dropouts. These students are given college level courses starting in their freshman year and when they graduate in four years they are awarded their Associate Degrees two weeks before they get their high school diplomas! Imagine the potential difference in their future lives.
5. Free bus and train transportation for all students so they have a dependable way to school, work, etc.
6. Food pantries on all campuses.
7. Men of Color Programs on every campus to mentor, tutor and motivate all students, but particularly minorities.
8. Computers and mobile hot spots provided every student in need.
|9. ANYTHING ELSE YOU'D LIKE TO ADD?|
|Conrad C. Heede|