Dr. Spencer Stewart – State of Higher Education & the Role of WGU in Nevada

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Listen to Dr. Spencer Stewart – State of Higher Education & the Role of WGU in Nevada

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Dr. Spencer Stewart – State of Higher Education & the Role of WGU in Nevada

Dr. Spencer Stewart serves as the Chancellor of WGU Nevada, an online, nonprofit, competency-based university established to expand Nevadans’ access to higher education throughout the state.

As Chancellor, Dr. Stewart has successfully guided WGU Nevada since its inception in mid-2015. Under his leadership, the university has increased its enrollment to more than 3,300 students, making it Nevada’s fastest growing higher education institution. WGU Nevada has also held two commencements and a regional commencement in Nevada, honoring more than 1,500 graduates who have completed bachelor’s or master’s degrees.

Dr. Stewart works closely with WGU Nevada’s Advisory Board of senior business, community, and education leaders from across the state. Together, the board works to expand access to higher education for working adults in Nevada. Endorsed by Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval, WGU Nevada offers over 60 accredited degree programs that align with Nevada’s growing demand in four industry sectors: information technology, health care, teacher education, and business.

In addition to his leadership role at WGU Nevada, Dr. Stewart has spearheaded many community outreach efforts throughout the state and serves on a few boards, including the Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance, that endeavor to strengthen and advance a community’s human capital.

Before joining WGU, Dr. Stewart worked with the Nevada System of Higher Education, helping build Nevada’s first state college: Nevada State College. While at NSC, Stewart was intimately involved in the development, management and operations of the college, beginning with four full-time employees and 177 students in 2001-02 with an annual budget of $500,000 and evolving to more than 175 full-time employees and 3,500 students in 2015 with an annual budget of approximately $20 million.

Dr. Stewart earned a doctorate degree from the University of Pennsylvania, a master’s degree from the University of Nevada Las Vegas, and a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University. A native Nevadan, Dr. Stewart resides in Henderson with his wife and three children.

Message From The President

Dear Rotarians,

From the History.com website, “On September 11, 2001, 19 militants associated with the Islamic extremist group al-Qaida hijacked four airplanes and carried out suicide attacks against targets in the United States. Two of the planes were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, a third plane hit the Pentagon just outside Washington, D.C., and the fourth plane crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Almost 3,000 people were killed during the 9/11 terrorist attacks, which triggered major U.S. initiatives to combat terrorism and defined the presidency of George W. Bush.

It has been 18 years since that awful day. The Day when the people of the United States of America came together and recognized the real threat not only to our way of life but to the stability of the world. Now, that so much time has passed, exactly what has happened in subsequent years in terms of preparedness in case of another such event?

The Homeland Security Act of 2002 created the Department of Homeland Security. It was signed into law by President George W. Bush on November 25, 2002. Today, the Department of Homeland Security is headed by a cabinet secretary and is responsible for preventing terror attacks, border security, immigrations and customs and disaster relief and prevention.

The effects of 9/11 were an immediate jolt to the US Economy. Wall Street shut down, and New York City in general lost thousands of jobs and billions in lost wages. First responders and people living near ground zero were exposed to toxic fumes and particles.

Thankfully, the Victim’s Compensation Fund which was depleted has been extended to 2092 after several 9/11 first responders and others testified before Congress and President Trump signed into law on July 29, 2019.

On December 18, 2001 Congress approved naming 9/11 as Patriot Day and in 2009 named September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance. How can each of us Rotarians mark this day with service? What community service projects does our club sponsor that each of us can become involved with to commemorate this year’s National Day of Service and Remembrance. I challenge each of our club members to volunteer for an extra project during this Rotary year and demonstrate how “Service above Self” is a daily part of our lives. Plan to attend the 30th Annual Peace Conference and hear some exceptional speakers and how they imagine Peace in the 21st Century. Take time to speak with members of our families who were too young to remember, or who had yet to be born, exactly what happened that day and how Americans came together to be stronger than ever.

Thank an active duty service member or a veteran for stepping up to keep our country free and safe. Give a donation to our Foundation or Rotary International Foundation to continue their peace and goodwill efforts around the world. Attend an organized event commemorating the 18th anniversary.

9/11 Never Forget. “Service above Self.”

Jackie Thornhill
President
Las Vegas Rotary Club

Member Highlights

b>President Jackie presented our Speaker Roger Thomas with our Share What You Can Award.

President Jackie awarded Joan’s Partner Ruth with a Paul Harris + 4 pin.

PP Michael Gordon poses with Roger Thomas.

PP Dave Thorson reminded us of the upcoming Wetzel Awards.

PP Brock Fraser introduced his close friend Becky.

Marie Walsh reminded us of Breakfast with books on September 10th.

Kathy Mahon led the invocation.

Joan Murdock was joined for lunch by her partner Ruth.

Jaime Goldsmith announced the need for our participation at SOAR on September 16th.

Francesca Gilbert announced the UNLV Tailgate on October 5th.

Bob Barnard who couldn’t sit at a full Birthday table started his own.

At President Jackie’s head table were Tom Thomas and our speakers Alex Woogmaster and Roger Thomas.

At our birthday table were Jerry Sennes, Caty Crocket, RB Brinton, Richard Jost, Rampur Viswanath, Ted McAdam, Sidra Kain and intruder Paul Kruger.

25 club president Jimmelle reminded us the canned food drive.

Marie Walsh reminded us of Breakfast with books on September 10th.

Scribe – September 5, 2019

Las Vegas Rotary Club Meeting: September 5, 2019

  • President Jackie Thornhill called the meeting to order.
  • Kathy Mahon gave the invocation;
  • Rene Gamero led the club in singing “God Bless America”, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance;
  • President Jackie led the club in reciting the Four-Way Test;
  • The Sergeant at Arms was Tina Bishop;
  • There were no International Rotarians, (4) visiting Rotarians and (3) Guests of Rotarians introduced;
  • President Jackie gave a reminder that the People of Action Campaign is still going and the 30th annual peace conference is at Treasure Island on November 16th. Since the club is a silver sponsor, President Jackie strongly encouraged attendance from the club. The Pilot program for Together We Read has begun. Additionally, she reminded the club of the International Convention in Hawaii. President Jackie has been in touch with ShelterBox who has been working on disaster relief for Hurricane Dorian. She has been heard that a District in North Carolina is working on disaster relief efforts and will keep the club apprised of what can be done to contribute;
  • Since it was the first Thursday of the month, President Jackie introduced the birthday table. Brock Fraser led the club in singing “Happy Birthday”;
  • Jimmelle Siarot gave a reminder about the canned food drive. Janet Linder reminded everyone of the new member orientation on September 10th at Francesca Gilbert’s home and encouraged everyone to participate;
  • Joan Murdoch awarded Ruth Jagedzinski with a Paul Harris Fellow +4;
  • PP Dave Thorson announced the upcoming Wetzel Awards. Rene Gamero announced the 25 Club social on September 24th which is a tour of the Make a Wish wishing place.
  • Marie Walsh discussed breakfast with books and reminded all Rotarians to sign up. The 10th is the first event;
  • Jamie Goldsmith announced a fundraiser for the canned food drive at Rockin’ Betty on September 8th. 20% of the proceeds will go to the canned food drive. She also reminded everyone of SOAR awards on September 16th and said the largest need is attendance;
  • Kathy Mahon reminded everyone of the high tea on September 15th at La Postté benefiting the canned food drive;
  • Jerry Sennes reminded everyone about the highway clean up on September 7th at Old Bonnie Springs entrance gate and breakfast afterwards at Sennes’ home; Francesca Gilbert announced the UNLV tailgate on October 5th. P.P. Jim Tucker reminded all Rotarians that there is still one space available in the wheel;
  • The weekly drawing began at $994 plus this week’s donations. The Ticket Winner who received a prize of $10 and the Lawry’s Bucks each went to guests of Rotarians;
  • PP Tom Thomas introduced Roger P. Thomas, Executive Vice President of Design for Wynn Design and Development who gave a presentation on the new Encore Hotel in Boston and the intricacies associated therewith;
  • President Jackie presented our speaker with a “Share What You Can” award to benefit the local USO and then adjourned the meeting.

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