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The Gateway Experience: Unity and Teamwork

January 17, 2020

By Andrea L. Golden-Pogue, ECMC Foundation Fellow

Unity. It was obvious in the first five seconds of meeting the President of the College and the staff and faculty that Gateway Technical College (Gateway) is a very different place. In the last 18 years of my professional career of educating adults I have seen it all- I thought! I was wrong. This visit left me amazed at the culture, facilities, and relationships.

The staff and students at Gateway all have a great time together! It made the culture of some of the top companies I have been in look like they need to visit Gateway to learn of the special “sauce.” Their environment is rich in excitement and learning. The relationships with business partners and philanthropic work is as unique as the individuals that make up each and every program of study.

Becoming a Gateway employee isn’t as easy as just signing on the dotted line — they have an extensive 18 month long onboarding process to confirm that everyone is singing from the same sheet of music. All employees are on the same page and headed in the same direction.

I had the good fortune of visiting with a division chair of the engineering technology program. He echoed some of the same concerns many of us had with trying to recruit a diverse population into our programs and fields of study. He was knowledgeable not just of his program and the many programs he has assisted in building for Gateway but mostly he was knowledgeable of people and his concern for his students and the genuine desire to help them achieve any goal they chose was what stuck out to me.

The Gateway Experience is engrained in each and every employee. All employees are actively encouraged to work from their strengths. What a phenomenal concept! Leadership is everyone’s responsibility not just the top tier of an organization.  

From the horticulture program to the automotive program and every campus in between the students and staff are happy to there! Happy to be a part of such an amazing team, working together to achieve the ultimate in student and staff success!

I am so thankful to the ECMC Foundation and ACTE for providing a tremendous learning environment for the fellows in the Post-Secondary Leadership Success Program.

About the ECMC Foundation Fellow

Andre Golden-Pogue is a workforce developer for the Oklahoma Public Health Training Center at the University of Oklahoma.

She is an ECMC Foundation Fellow of the Postsecondary Leadership Success Program (PLSP) at ACTE – Sponsored by the ECMC Foundation. The program is part of ECMC Foundation’s CTE Leadership Collaborative Initiative.

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