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MCC-Longview President Dr. Kirk Nooks on panel to discuss Generation X college presidents

Dr. Kirk Nooks

Metropolitan Community College-Longview President Kirk Nooks, Ed.D., will be part of a unique panel discussion for this fall’s Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) conference.

Nooks authored a chapter in the book”Generation X Presidents Leading Community Colleges,” released last spring. The book goes in-depth on the challenges facing 21st century leaders at the helm of community colleges. That topic also will be the focus of a panel discussion at the annual ACCT conference in September in Las Vegas.

According to the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), there have been more than 900 presidential transitions in the last five years. It also estimated that nearly half of community college presidents will retire in the next five years. The book, orchestrated by lead authors Martha Willis and Linda Garcia, takes a look at the Gen-X leaders who are stepping in to fill those vacant positions. (Generation X is made up of people born in the 1960s and ’70s. This generation followed the baby boomers.)

Being in Generation X “gives me a different frame of reference,” says Nooks, 42, who’s starting his fifth year as president of MCC-Longview. “It allows me to be closer to the traditional student population, and I have a better understanding of technology and social media.”

Nooks authored Chapter 7 of the book, “New Strategic Planning.”

“Being in Generation X comes with experiencing the world through a different lens or perspective,” he says. “It was shaped by key events in childhood which gave birth to a leadership paradigm. The process is not different from other generations. The difference is in the approach to crafting the solutions and determining the strategy. Our institutions have become increasingly complex and our operating environments are shaped in scarcity. With the massive retirement of leaders within the short term, this generation of leaders (that is smaller in population) will carry the responsibility of navigating a path through student success, increasing student diversity, declining resources and political uncertainty at all levels.   ”

The Generation X conversation has been an ongoing one. Last summer, Nooks was one of four college leaders interviewed at length for Community College Daily. For more on that article, click here.