“We have no ivory towers here. I’m not untouchable, my door is always open,” said Dr. Faye Pappalardo, President of Carroll Community College. “Students are always welcome.”
It is that type of mentality that Dr. Pappalardo has tried to create at Carroll. It is her job to make sure Carroll is a place that all students can come to and succeed. By creating a culture of mutual respect between teachers and students, Pappalardo’s goal is to create an educational institution where you get what you put in.
“We will do everything in our power to help you learn and achieve your goals but you’ve got to put something into it,” says Dr. Pappalardo. “We can offer you the tools, we can offer you the skills, we can present the material and the content. There’s not a hole in your head where we put the learning in. If you want to get an A then you have to work to get that A.”
Dr. Pappalardo became college president in 1999 and since then has stressed a values system. “The foundation of any organization should be built on integrity. I believe what we say to students that we are going to do, we better do it. If this is what we say we are going to do then we must do it with integrity.” It is those values that Pappalardo believes has allowed Carroll to achieve its ultimate vision. “To remain a very viable, quality, strong institution producing students that go on to whatever they want to do. If it’s to go to a four year institution then for them to go there, be prepared, and do well. If they want a career hopefully we have helped them to develop their skills in whatever career they want to be in.”
For all the students who come into Carroll, Dr. Pappalardo hopes that they are doing so to improve themselves. “I hope that they learn to be a better person. At any age, I think you continue developing into a worthwhile citizen, that you’re able to help society. I think once you forget that and once you think you don’t need to develop anymore you become stagnant.” Despite her success as college president Pappalardo has never allowed herself to become stagnant. “I try to learn from others. I think it’s very important. I learn from students.”
It is Dr. Pappalardo’s belief that college is about student success and it is the goal of the president and faculty to do their best to achieve that. “The biggest thing is for anyone who comes to Carroll and has some dream, is that you reach that dream by the time you leave here. If we can do that then we succeeded.”