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Bowie campus gets new Director

by Darin Allred | Nov 25, 2014 <p> </p>

The director of North Central Texas College's Bowie campus may be new, but he knows first-hand how important a community college education is for students and how much it impacts the community it serves.

Jose DaSilva took over as the Director of the Bowie campus in late August, just as the Fall semester was starting. While NCTC may be new to him, the role of the community college is not new.

His first job was at Tallahassee Community College in Florida where he wore several hats. He was the Dean of Students and later took over Student Activities, Campus Recreation, Outdoor Recreation and Intramural Sports.

He then went to work at Florida State University and later worked at the University of North Texas.

"I really wanted to get back to a community college setting," he said. "Ever since I started here, every day has been something new and I love that. The staff here is also extremely friendly which makes the entire transition so much easier. The staff here has been great in basically showing me the ropes, showing me where things are on campus and helping me when students come in and ask me questions that I honestly don't know the answer to yet. They have helped me a lot in showing me where things are, how things operate. It's one of those things where I feel confident knowing they are there because I can rely on them."

Dr. Emily Klement, the Dean of NCTC's Bowie and Graham campuses, says DaSilva is a perfect fit to lead the staff and students in Montague County.

"Jose comes to us with not only a professional background in community colleges, but attended one as a student, as well," Klement said. "He understands and values the importance of the mission and we look forward to his leadership in the Montague County area. I know the campus is in great hands."

DaSilva is not only getting to know the staff and students on the NCTC Bowie campus, he is also learning more about Bowie and Montague County.

"I've already immersed myself in Rotary and then I attended a couple of Boy Scouts meetings where I talked about college and NCTC and the services that we provide," he said. "I am also a part of this year's class of Leadership Montague County. Every since I have come in, they have made a point to reach out to me and invite me to everything that is going on. And it's the entire county, not just Bowie, so I can learn more about the county that we serve. The more I get to know the county, the better I can conceptualize how we can better serve them."

DaSilva has started evaluating the programs offered on the NCTC Bowie campus to look for areas where expansion is possible.

"Our Petroleum Technology program has been extremely popular," he said. "The growth rate has been tremendous. Steve Burnett, the chair of the program, asked me if we could double all of the classes being offered. So after working with several of the deans and chairs, we were able to do that. We found the space and were able to work with the faculty here to re-arrange some of the classrooms. So we continue to grow, not only in our Petroleum Technology program but also our LVN program. That's definitely one of our campus goals."

Another new program that will be offered on the NCTC Bowie campus is a prep class for students wanting to apply to the college's LVN program. The prep class will help students sharpen basic skills that are needed to pass the program's entrance exam.

"We will be offering that in the spring and hopefully that will increase the success rate of students entering the program," he said. "That will continue to increase the growth of our campus as far as enrollment. We have also built a partnership with Bowie Memorial Hospital. They are sending us jobs that our students can fill so we can share that our students so they have the opportunity to apply for those jobs."

There are other areas that DaSilva wants to improve as well.

"We are accessing all of the services that we provide on this campus and we have increased the level of engagement opportunities," he said. "We had a Halloween costume contest and a pumpkin carving contest. We had a Thanksgiving luncheon where faculty, staff and students came together, sat together and shared a meal. The Bowie campus is becoming a go-to place.

"When I first got here, one of the things I noticed was that students would come here, take classes and then leave," he added. "Even faculty would come here, teach their classes and then leave. Now, students come here to be here. Even after their classes are over, they still hang around to see what is going on today. So it's becoming a go-to location instead of just an educational facility and that is one of my biggest goals."

To contact Jose DaSilva on the Bowie campus, call (940) 872-4002 Ext. 5211 or email him at jdasilva@nctc.edu.

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