PAINTSVILLE – Dr. Alan Scheibmeir, interim president of Big Sandy Community and Technical College (BSCTC), spoke at the Paintsville Rotary Club meeting on Tuesday, February 14 at the Ramada Inn Conference Center.
Scheibmeir, who came to the college from north Texas, spoke of the challenges facing Paintsville and Johnson County.
“Some may look at what you face as challenges, but I encourage you to see the opportunities,” said Dr. Scheibmeir, who served as president of Grayson College in Denison, Texas from 1996 to 2012.
He spoke of the challenges of two north Texas communities (Sherman and Denison) when he worked at Grayson College.
“The county had lost 7,500 jobs,” he recalled. “Just like you, they had experienced the feast and famine during the ups and downs in the natural resource sector. For you, it has been coal. For our community in Texas, it was oil and gas.”
The revitalization of these north Texas communities came through a concentrated effort of blurring municipal, county and regional lines, said Scheibmeir. Success was achieved when a unified vision was displayed to state and federal stakeholders.
“I see much of the same alignment here in eastern Kentucky with the work of One East Kentucky,” said Dr. Scheibmeir. “As a college, we must do what we did in Texas… We must train workers to meet exact specifications wanted by industry… Exactly what they wanted, when they wanted it, where they wanted it, and taught by whomever they wanted to teach it.” Can it happen here? “Sure,” said Scheibmeir.
He then challenged those in the audience with the following questions:
– Are you open to working together with other communities?
– Are you open to working with state and federal entities and are they open to working with you?
– Are you willing to increase your tolerance and acceptance of diversity?
– Are you willing to keep learning?
– Are you willing to put service above self, to put broader interests above local interest, to do what is true, fair, build goodwill and friendship and be beneficial to all concerned?
To inquire about having Dr. Scheibmeir talk to a civic group or organization, contact Teresa McCoart at (606) 886-7371 or email [email protected]