Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College formally welcomed Dr. Russell Swagger as the 9th President of Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College at a Ceremony of Investiture on Friday May 10, 2019.
The week was filled with community focused activities including faculty lectures on the topics of The Mathematics of Ojibwe Beadwork and in the Art of Weaving as well as Costa Rica Student Research. Founding Board of Regents member, Dolores Beaudin, shared her talk of the History of Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College. Dolores encouraged attendees to stop waiting around and start making changes, start taking action to improve our community.
Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College Alumni gathered on Thursday for a reception, conversation and to toast the 2019 graduates.
Friday’s Ceremony of Investiture highlighted the importance of Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College in each of the communities they serve throughout Northern Wisconsin.
Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College Board of Regents welcomed Dr. Russell Swagger to the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College Presidency on June 18, 2018. Dr. Swagger earned his Associates from United Tribes Technical College, his Bachelors from Minot State University, his Master’s degree from the University of Mary, and his Doctor of Philosophy from Capella University. His more than twenty years of professional work include administrative roles in higher education and leadership of nonprofit organizations, most recently at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College. His academic scholarship and service have been focused on student success. Dr. Swagger is a member of the St. Croix Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, together with his wife Wanda, a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, they raise their children.
In his comments Dr. Swagger shared that “we [Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College] work as a team here, and we get things done as a team. We are planning right now to build a 100 unit single student unit, and plan to build a 48 unit family housing unit. We have established a volunteer fundraising committee to help us raise money so that we do not have to be at the mercy of federal funding or declining enrollment. We are offering two Bachelor’s degree programs this fall in Business and Social Work, two great needs in our Tribal communities. We have recently launched a Tribal Court Lay Advocate program, reinventing our Allied Health program and opening new LPN and ADN programs along with pre-nursing. We’ve worked hard to create a sense of true community, we are an absolute community driven college. We respond to community needs quickly and are flexible to meet the community needs. I am committed to this beautiful College and our amazing Ojibwe communities.”
The ceremony included Lac Courte Oreilles Badger Singers and greetings from the Faculty Senate President, Michelle Haskins, and the Student Senate President, Misty Jackson.
Delegates from Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibwa Community College partner institutions attended, including College of Menomonee Nation, College of St. Scholastica, University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire, University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh, University of Wisconsin – Superior, University of Jamestown, Hayward School District, Hayward Chamber of Commerce, and Impact Seven. Senator Janet Bewley was in attendance read a Certificate of Commendation issued by Governor Tony Evers.