Change is good

Jul 21, 2006

Dr. Joyce Shotick, Kettering's new associate provost for Student Affairs, has only been on campus a few weeks but already she has big plans for the Division of Student Affairs at the university.

Jumping in with both feet, Dr. Joyce Shotick, Kettering's new associate provost for Student Affairs, has been keeping so busy meeting with students, staff, faculty, and administration at the university that her new neighbors are beginning to wonder just how many hours she can pack into a day.

"I was raised on a farm," said Shotick of her long work hours, "where you started working when you got up and you stopped working when you went to bed." She also admitted that with husband David and her two grown sons still living in Illinois, she doesn't have them to distract her from getting to know her new student base and delve into the new job.

Shotick replaces Dr. Patrick Deese as the head of Student Affairs at Kettering. Her enthusiasm and dedication to students is infectious, and her energy level rivals that of the 18, 19 and 20 year-olds in her constituency.

"College students are fabulous individuals at an incredible point in their lives," she said, "they are not children any more and they are not quite adults." Her philosophy is to treat college-aged people as adults to help them develop the skills they will need after college.

She said she has already recognized one difference between Kettering students and students from more traditional higher education institutions: "they are on a track to mature so much faster than students at a traditional college or university," she said. A phenomenon she attributes to the cooperative education program at Kettering that places students in professional work environments beginning in their freshman year.

Her plans for enriching student life at Kettering include change, change and some more change. "Change is going to be hard at this institution," she admitted, "but it is so true that the one constant in life is change. Organizations can refuse to change and go out of business, or embrace change, address the needs dictated by the marketplace and succeed," she said.

"There is so much potential for Kettering in the educational marketplace because of its academic rigor," she said, "and we can enhance that through programming in Student Affairs. To accomplish the necessary changes there will have to be a lot of trust in faculty and the administration to do the right things," she added. Shotick has ambitious plans for Kettering.

Looking into the future to a planned break in the hard work, Shotick is planning the annual family ski trip between Christmas and New Years. Shotick said she would like to have her husband David, an accountant for Caterpillar Inc., and sons Matthew, 22, a graduate of Milliken University with a degree in music, and Mark, 21, a radio and television communications major at Drake University, come to Michigan for this year's ski trip. "I've heard there is good skiing in northern Michigan," she said. As a water-sport enthusiast, Shotick will probably adjust well to being transplanted in the Great Lakes State.

Written by Dawn Hibbard