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Jeremy Brown’s summer tour takes PCC by storm

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Talk about making the most of your first day on the job.

On Monday, July 1, new Portland Community College President Jeremy Brown climbed into one of PCC’s eco-friendly Bio Diesel shuttles and was whisked away on a tour of the college district. In total, Brown visited 10 locations, starting with the Sylvania Campus and later the Newberg Center and then finishing up at the Downtown and CLIMB centers. It was a way for the new PCC leader to get a feel for the college and the diversity of its campuses and centers.

“What a fun way to launch my first day at Portland Community College,” Brown said. “Over the course of nearly 10 hours I had the good fortune of visiting PCC’s many campuses and centers and chatting with a variety of administrators, faculty, staff and students.”

Jeremy Brown steps foot for the first time at the Newberg Center - the first stop on his 'Tour de PCC' on July 1.

Jeremy Brown steps foot for the first time at the Newberg Center – the first stop on his ‘Tour de PCC’ on July 1.

The welcoming parties at each campus were fun and full of excitement. The day kicked off with a 3-D gift handed to him by a robot at the Sylvania Campus and concluded with a variety of stress-relieving gifts at the CLIMB Center. In between, there were visits to the Newberg, Hillsboro, Willow Creek, Metro, and Downtown centers as well as stopovers to the Rock Creek, Cascade and Southeast campuses. From walking tours about the sustainability of PCC buildings to operating a Caterpillar excavator to riding Max for the first time to competing in a raucous jump-shooting competition to simply shaking hands and chatting with people, Brown got to experience the college at its finest.

“As a result of the tour, I have an even greater appreciation of all you do that makes PCC a special place,” he said. “It meant a lot to me that you took time out from your busy days to welcome me to the PCC fold.”

If you missed the bus tour, there are more opportunities to meet Jeremy Brown. Meet and greets with the president include –  Noon to 12:30 p.m., Thursday, July 11, Sylvania Summer Luau, Performing Arts Center;  2:15-3 p.m., Monday, July 15, Rock Creek’s Aviation Hanger; 3-4 p.m., Wednesday, July 24, CLIMB Center; noon to 1 p.m.,  Monday, July 29, Cascade Cafeteria; and 4-5 p.m.,  Wednesday July 31, Southeast Center’s Community Hall.

On the July 1 bus tour, some of the campus leadership weren’t happy to just welcome Brown to the college, but were enthusiastic to put him through challenges. At Cascade, Campus President Algie Gatewood competed against Brown in that aforementioned jump-shooting competition in the Cascade gymnasium. The two had 90 seconds to make baskets from various locations around the key. It was a best two-out-of-three competition that Brown won by a whisker in front of a big and energetic crowd.

“Dr. Brown exemplified good sportsmanship in the basketball free throw shoot around with me,” Gatewood said. “I think we both enjoyed the shoot around as much as the students, faculty and staff enjoyed cheering us on.”

At the Rock Creek Campus, Brown was allowed to operate one of the Think Big Program’s large Caterpillar excavators out in the shop courtyard of Building 2. Students, faculty and staff of the Rock Creek Campus and the Hillsboro Center were impressed he made a personal visit to see them, said Birgitte Ryslinge, interim Rock Creek president.

The Cascade Campus cheered on Jeremy Brown and Algie Gatewood in their jump-shooting competition in the gym.

The Cascade Campus cheered on Jeremy Brown and Algie Gatewood in their jump-shooting competition in the gym.

“The visit showed Dr. Brown has a great sense of humor and is also very open and versatile,” Ryslinge said. “At Rock Creek, he handled an giant excavator and an ice cream scoop with equal dexterity, and didn’t mind being asked to do either of those things. Many commented afterwards that they found him to be down to earth and interested in learning about them. From my campus president perspective, it was wonderful to observe Dr. Brown having such positive and well informed conversations on his first day with a range of stakeholders that included a city councilor from Hillsboro, PCC Board members, students, faculty and staff.”

A big part of his day was telling the crowds that he wants to hear from them. Brown made a point that he would love to hear their ideas and encouraged them to get in touch with him personally via email at:

“This is not a one-person operation,” Brown said to the crowd at Southeast Center. “It’s a place where everyone has a chance to give input. I do want for us to interact in a way that is transparent, has mutual respect and has open lines of communications.”

Brown will take the summer to meet with community leaders with whom the college partners and spend time in the many communities PCC serves. He’s scheduled to participate in special summer events, festivals and much more. However, if you do talk with PCC’s new leader be sure to call him by the right name.

“I’m a low key person,” Brown said. “Just say, ‘Hi, Jeremy.’ I’ve been called a lot of names in the past, but ‘Jeremy’ is the preferred one. I’m looking forward to many great years ahead of us. I’m looking for a great start.”

Jeremy Brown Tour 2013
  • Jeremy Brown steps foot for the first time at the Newberg Center - the first stop on his 'Tour de PCC' on July 1.
  • The Cascade Campus cheered on Jeremy Brown and Algie Gatewood in their jump-shooting competition in the gym.

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »

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Sorry, but the comments have been closed. If you see something that doesn't belong, please click the x and report it.

x by Kyle 4 years ago

It’s good to see Dr. Brown out meeting PCC’s great staff but why did he take a huge shuttle with five people on it around the entire district? There are PCC Driver Education hybrids I see all the time at several different campuses and centers; couldn’t he have used two of them and promoted PCC’s sustainability goals while on his tour?

x by James Hill 4 years ago

Hi Kyle, thanks for the comment. All of the PCC Shuttles run on Bio Diesel so it was a very green transportation for Dr. Brown. Having him and his tour group (which consisted of 10-15 people getting on and off at each location, not five) broken up in about 5-6 hybrids would have been a bit of a dilemma logistically and probably wouldn’t have been a much greener commute. Plus, the larger shuttle provided space for him to chat with various staff about each campus, allowed our video production staff to store their equipment and have access to him during the journey for footage and interviews. In addition, it provided us free wi-fi to blog and take notes. For his first day, the bio-diesel shuttle was just the best option.

x by Rob Wagner 4 years ago

What a fantastic smile and energy. Makes me proud to be part of the Community of PCC!

x by Jennifer McBratney 4 years ago

This was a great article, and the pictures are great. I think this also shows off our wonderful programs and new buildings. It looks like it was an exhausting day, but what a good welcome.

x by Ernest Dempsye 4 years ago

Great story. And welcome Mr. Brown!

x by Victory! 4 years ago

Will there be upcoming opportunities for Jeremy Brown to socialize with student leadership (ASPCC, Multicultural Center, Women’s Resource Center, Roots, Transitions, etc.)? Excited to meet the new president and work together in the mutual interest of serving PCC students well

x by Raolat Ajibade 4 years ago

What a great tour!Thanks for your smile and welcome on board! AS always life is a marvel!

x by David Wilson 4 years ago

Why did President Brown choose to visit campuses during the summer when there are so few students and faculty on campus? I would think that if he wants to see the true experiences of students and faculty at each unique location, he would want to visit during the terms with regular enrollment.
This was nothing more than a photo-op for a President whose appointment was met with mediocre enthusiasm (by students AND faculty) at best.

x by Anne Mark 4 years ago

It is on behalf of those, and still due to being far from the United States have no chance that I write. Can they be given an individual meeting with the President of the college? If so, I remain counted, for I am travelling away from the States and hopes to be back long after the “Wednesday July 31, Southeast Center’s Community Hall” meeting by the same.
Thank you.

x by Gina 4 years ago

Why you allow cell phones and music to be played in the classrooms, computer labs and even the library is completely beyond comprehension. This is a place where it is to be quiet to concentrate on studies and for computer work, this is not your car, fellow students! Why am I paying for computer labs when I can’t even use them because someone can’t live without their noisy devices between breaks?!! The teachers and lab administrators at all campuses need to put a stop to this. They should take a page from Dr. Sandlin’s book and completely forbid electronic devices and speakers from the classrooms, labs, and library. I should be able to find a quiet study area on the campus at least indoors!!! Have courtesy for everyone around you not yourself! Jeremy needs to step in on this immediately! If someone needs their devices that badly then that’s a disability and they need to get their devices surgically implanted in their “brain” so only they can hear their “music” and phone calls! I shouldn’t have to hear their garbage.


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