President Dr. Ronald M. Schumacher Jr., was inaugurated last week as the seventh president of Terra State Community College in Fremont, and touched on his relationship with Terra State’s students and his journey to into higher education at the prestigious ceremony.
“As a first-generation college student you don’t always know a direct path to get to where you’re going,” Schumacher said. “Maybe, not always, one exists. So you’ve got to forge a new path and create your own path. That’s what I did.”
The Terra State Community College Board of Trustees named Schumacher as President last November. He had been serving as the Interim President for five months and, prior to that, was the college’s Senior Vice President and Executive Director of the Terra College Foundation.
Many community leaders are looking forward to working with Schumacher.
“We are stronger together and can create more valuable opportunities for the students and business industry that we serve,” said Superintendent Greg Edinger, of Vanguard-Sentinel Career & Technology Center. Fremont’s Mayor Danny Sanchez, also looks forward to their partnership. “The ability of our leaders in this community to work with Terra in order to have a strong and skilled workforce is beneficial to all of us,” he said.
Dr. Lillian Schumacher, President Schumacher’s wife and President of Tiffin University, explained the journey the two of them have traveled to become college presidents.
“It’s very unusual that a married couple can become university and community college presidents without having to divide their lives while miles – or even states – apart. It is a blessing,” she said.
Schumacher started his journey in higher education in 1992 as Tiffin University’s (TU) Assistant Football Coach. Since then, he has gained experience in a variety of roles, including Vice President for Advancement and Public Affairs at TU, Vice President for Enrollment Management at University of Saint Francis and TU, and Director of Admissions at TU. His 29 years of experience in higher education has given him many ideas and perspectives that will help him reshape Terra State into a thriving educational institution.
After being mentored by a couple of uniquely different college presidents, Schumacher discovered the variety of positions in higher education and felt the drive to lead an organization.
His faith in the college was evident in his inauguration speech.
“I believe this college stands at the precipice of greatness,” he said. “And I will tell you three reasons why: Our community, our programs, but most importantly, our people. Our passion for what we do on a daily basis. Our want and desire is to provide the best education to our students and sometimes to each other,” he said.
“We now have a new opportunity as we move forward. This position as president is only held for short period of time. I feel I am a steward for this college and my only desire is I leave this place better than when I found it,” Schumacher said.
Schumacher stressed the importance to focus on our programs, to reinvigorate the things we do in the trades, to serve our industry leaders and to make sure our graduates are most desired when they leave Terra State.
He thanked all of his friends, family, presenters, community, as well as the faculty and staff at the college.
“I really appreciate learning from you about Terra State and about the things we have to overcome,” he said. “I believe there’s nothing we can’t get done if we work together. I thank you for allowing me to stand here before you as your president and as your leader, but most importantly, standing right beside you as your friend moving this college forward to push and drive us to the next level of achievement for Terra State.”
Schumacher encouraged students to find their passion and reminded them Terra State would be there to help push them in the right direction, wherever that may be.
“We do what we do on a daily basis because of you,” he said. “We want you to succeed. We want to help you find that passion. Let’s find your direction and your pathway. If it doesn’t exist, let’s create it, but let’s figure it out together.
“Our students are at the center of everything we do here. Let’s not ever forget that.”
I believe (Terra State Community College) stands at the precipice of greatness,” said incoming President Dr. Ronald M. Schumacher Jr. at his inauguration last week.
Dr. Ronald M. Schumacher Jr. thanked his friends, family, presenters and community, as well as the faculty and staff at Terra State Community College in Fremont, at his inauguration as president last week.