Miya Squires, Butte College’s Student Success Coordinator, has been honored as the Educator of the Year by the Chico Rotary.
Squires is responsible for implementing a number of innovative programs that are helping students to succeed at Butte College. For those students unprepared for the rigors of college academics, or facing a number of other challenges that require balancing academics with family life, work, financial hardship, the College has several programs available that Squires manages to help struggling students.
Squires has been instrumental in coordinating a multi-faceted strategy to help students succeed. Several years ago the college obtained a federal Title III grant to provide resources to help implement this strategy. As the coordinator of the Title III grant, as well as co-chair of the College’s Student Success Committee, Squires played a key role in the development of this strategy and is playing a leading role in its implementation.
This strategy includes:
• creation of a one-stop academic support center for students – the Center for Academic Success;
• implementation of the On-Course program that trains faculty, staff, and students to provide active instruction and for students to take responsibility for their learning;
• widespread implementation of Learning Communities that link several courses together and provide a richer academic experience for students;
• a supplemental instruction program that provides a student tutor for more difficult courses;
• Accelerated Basic Skills which reduces the number of courses a student must complete go get through the English basic skills strand; • Applied Academics which gives students in selected career and technical education programs the reading, English, and Math skills they need in the context of their career program; and
• student mentorship which provides a faculty or staff mentor to athletes and students in certain basic skills programs.
In 1993, as a first semester Butte College student, Squires began her education career as a tutor. She later became the full-time secretary for the Learning Center. Then, after earning her bachelor’s and master’s degrees, she became the coordinator and expanded the Learning Center into the Center for Academic Success. In 2008, she became an active participant on the College’s Basic Skills Committee. Butte College’s Action Plan for Basic Skills, to which Squires was a major contributor, was recognized by the statewide Academic Senate as the model for the state. When the college received its Title III grant it was only natural that Squires would become the Student Success Coordinator.
Squires is also actively engaged at the campus, state, and national levels. She has been active on the Academic Senate, serving as a member and an officer, as well as presenting at a number of statewide and national conferences.