Welcome to the 2010-2011 academic year. Let me introduce myself. My name is Neal Stefanko and I am the new University-Community Liaison working to provide and strengthen vital links of communication between Kent State University and the City of Kent community. Currently, I am a KSU graduate student working on my Master of Business Administration degree.
This newly established position is intended to serve as a communication link between important constituents of both Kent State University (i.e., students, faculty, staff and administration) and the City of Kent (i.e., police, fire, administration and other government entities). My primary goals this year will be to educate, facilitate communication, and strengthen the means to mesh ideas that are intended to improve the experience of those who live, work, and/or study in Kent.
Since assuming this position, I have spoken with a number of university and city officials. From these conversations, I have acquired a strong sense that this opportunity represents not only a collaborative commitment, but also a renewed starting point for the university and the city to more aggressively move forward on improved working relationships. Leaders of both the City of Kent and the University should, in my view, be commended for launching this initiative.
Among a number of planned initiatives, I'd like to note one at this time. It is our intent in the coming year to help students better understand that their actions have consequences. None of us wants to see any student ruin his/her dream before even having the chance to achieve it. If, for example, a student becomes inebriated and then drives or makes other dangerous decisions that lead to legal action, that student's dream of becoming an attorney, public servant, teacher or other respected professional is put into serious jeopardy. Thus, it is our intention to better educate students about the potential lasting consequences of irresponsible actions.
In closing, I believe our city and our university -- the people who comprise the greater Kent community -- reflect an already amazing array of talents, resources, and mutual collaborations.
In my role as University-Community Liaison, I look forward to facilitating opportunities for "town and gown" to work together for the benefit of all.
I welcome your feedback at any time.
Feel free to contact me at UniversityCommunityLiaison@kent.edu
I look forward to meeting and working with many of you in the months ahead.
Neal A. Stefanko