Institutional Imperative #3:
Northwest College shall be meaningfully connected to the high schools and workplaces of the communities it serves.
-An increased percentage of service area high school students (current students and graduates) will enroll at Northwest College.
-An increased number of service area constituents will choose Northwest College to meet their career goals/workforce training needs.
- BRIDGING SUMMER STUDIES
A Summer Bridge Math Program was developed for launch a couple of weeks prior to the start of fall semester 2014. Targeted at incoming freshmen whose math scores aren't quite at college level, the two-week residential program bridges the students' math skills to the college level, allowing them to avoid the time and expense of taking developmental math classes while in college. Students also learn how to practice good study habits, improve their research skills and navigate campus.
- ENROLLING CONCURRENTLY
Northwest continued challenging Big Horn Basin high school students to get a head start on college through concurrent enrollment classes offered in their schools. These classes carry college credit and open a window into the rigors of college-level coursework.
- MINING THE BASIN
Of this year's freshman class, 129 students came to Northwest as graduates from Big Horn Basin high schools. This represents 27% of all 2013 Big Horn Basin high school graduates.
- FINDING CAREERS
Northwest College teamed with the Park County Leadership Institute class to host a Career Day for Big Horn Basin high school students, NWC students and the general public. More than 40 area businesses participated, sharing information about employment opportunities in the Big Horn Basin.
- NURSING READINESS
Working nurses across the Big Horn Basin will soon be able to use NWC facilities to certify in specialty fields and prepare for infrequent emergent-care patient scenarios. State-of-the-art simulation labs in the new Yellowstone Building will provide community health care providers access to high-fidelity manikins for pediatric, obstetrical and adult care to replicate hospital situations. Emergency training will be offered at multiple levels, as well as allied health coursework in needed areas such as phlebotomy and radiology. An expanded curriculum also provides for presentations by outside experts to benefit faculty, students and community health care providers alike.
- CONFERENCING SPACES
Construction completed this year on the Yellowstone Building will open a new community conference center in fall 2014 to accommodate workforce training programs, conferences, community events and larger-venue demands. The center's movable partitions and state-of-the-art multimedia equipment can be tailored to meet the differing sizes and presentation needs of almost any group.
- TRAINING THE WORKFORCE
Northwest College's Centers for Training and Development served the Big Horn Basin's workforce training needs through more than 221 conferences, customized trainings, open enrollment seminars, workshops and online offerings. Training in management, leadership, business topics and computer applications provided relevant skills and knowledge to support local workforce, businesses and industries. Certification training is now available in three new programs: Commercial Driver's License Class A, Certified Bookkeeper and Medical Billing and Coding. A machinist apprenticeship program will launch in summer 2014 with several industry partners, and recently purchased simulators will support heavy equipment training and other industrial training programs scheduled to begin in fall 2014.
- SERVING COMMUNITIES
President Stefani Hicswa extended the college's resources and her own personal expertise in economic development in rural communities through her service on the Forward Cody board and the Powell Economic Partnership (PEP) Vision Project steering committee.
The NWC Photography Program ranks 8th on the list of the country's Top 10 Most Popular Commercial Photography Colleges, behind the Art Institute of Colorado and the Fashion Institute of New York, according to Campus Explorer.
Five Northwest competitive teams finished their seasons in the top echelon of the nation, including Wrestling (2nd), Volleyball (8th), Journalism (2nd), Forensics (Bronze) and Men's Rodeo Team qualifiers (24th).
Local grade schoolers toured campus before attending the children's theatre event staged at NWC in April. One little fellow was overheard saying, "I didn't know this is what college was like. I want to come!"