PLATTSBURGH — A crowd of people flocked to Clinton Community College Tuesday night to show their support of faculty and staff tagged for layoff in 2013-14.
For more than an hour at the start of the college’s Board of Trustees meeting, current and former students of the college, as well as parents, faculty and community members, took turns telling the board what an asset Athletic Coach Donna Dixon; Associate Professor of Health, Physical Education and Recreation Angela Alphonso; and Assistant Professor of Humanities Ian M. Burcroff are to the school.
“It saddens me to think that many wonderful faculty will lose their jobs due to the financial crunches of the college,” said Kim Lashway, a graduate of Clinton Community and mother of two children who currently participate in programs at the school.
Dixon, Alphonso and Burcroff are three of 10 CCC faculty and staff members who learned in November that they would lose their jobs due to the college’s anticipated $600,000 budget gap for next school year.
”Donna’s everything you could ask for in a coach,” Karissa House-Devins, a former student who played soccer and basketball at the college under Dixon’s leadership, told the board.
Dixon, who also works part time as an admissions adviser at Clinton Community, has served as coach of the college’s women’s soccer and basketball teams since 1995 and as coach of the school’s softball team at various times over the last seven years.
However, House-Devins and many of Dixon’s other former athletes testified that she has served as much more than just their coach.
“She was voluntarily on call for all of her players,” House-Devins said. “We looked to her for information and advice in a very critical time in our lives ... She taught us to be involved in our communities and to give back.”