Dr. Jean Hernandez was named President of Edmonds Community College in 2011.
Hernandez previously was the vice president for instruction at South Seattle Community College, where she served as the interim president and vice chancellor.
She received her Doctorate of Education degree in Educational Leadership & Policy Studies from the University of Washington and her Master of Education in Counselor Education and Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education degrees from the University of North Texas.
1. What is your job title and what do you do?
President of Edmonds Community College.
I work with a group of amazing employees who assist our students by transforming lives. We provide educational and career opportunities that help individuals in our community achieve their goals to transfer to a university; develop workforce skills that lead to high demand, high wage jobs; take pre-college courses to prepare for college-level courses; or learn English as a Second Language. In addition, we have a comprehensive student support system that offers orientation sessions, advising, tutoring, counseling, career preparation, services for students with disabilities, student clubs, sports, residence halls, and much more to ensure students have resources and services that will help them be successful.
2. How long have you been working in that occupation?
I have worked professionally in higher education for over 30 years in the areas of human resources, student services and instruction.
3. What is the best part of your job?
Problem solving when a difficult situation/challenge occurs. I like to think outside of the box and try to find a solution that is a win-win for all. That may not always be possible. However, I feel confident that I give it my best and keep in mind that we are affecting lives with every decision we make.
4. If you could use three words to describe your job, what would they be?
Transformational – I’m constantly helping someone figure out how education can help them reach their dreams,
Partnerships – whether it is with our local mayors, community non-profits, our EdCC Foundation, industry partners, or community leaders, I am always looking for ways to create stronger relationships to address the needs of our community, and
Awesome – definitely, the BEST job I have ever had!
5. What are the qualities needed to be successful in your job?
Being a strong collaborator, willing to be “out there” meeting members of the community and attending a lot of events and functions, innovative, student-centered, and being a lifelong learner
6. Anything else you want readers to know?
I’m the first person in my family to go to college. I had great encouragement and support from my parents, and I hope that Edmonds CC and I can continue to provide that kind of advocacy and support for members of our community who want to begin or go back to college to reach their educational or career dream.