NOVA President Scott Ralls hosted an “Ask the Prez” Facebook Live session on February 24 with students Hannah Williams (AN), Samantha Slusher (WO) and Abdulla Qureshi (AL). The sessions provide an opportunity for the NOVA community to learn what is important to NOVA’s president.
The students asked questions like “Why is parking not included in registration?” and “What piece of advice changed your future?”
In response to the question about the advice that shaped him as a young person, Ralls shared that University of North Carolina Coach Dean Smith spoke in his hometown. Ralls’ father encouraged him to shake hands and introduce himself. When he got to the front of the line, Smith asked Ralls, “What’s your passion?” When Ralls responded, Smith said, “Then that’s what you should do. Follow your passion and you’ll be a success.”
When asked “Why did you want to work at NOVA?” Ralls replied, “I wanted to be close to students. In North Carolina I was chancellor of all of the community colleges in the state. But I didn’t get to see students. I like the events and things like this.”
“These live broadcasts will be held once a semester,” said Amanda Gillespie, NOVA’s director of College Marketing, Web & Creative Services.
The first Facebook Live broadcast took place in December and there were 13,000 unique views. Next semester, the Social Media team is considering a Town Hall format.
Ralls reminded students to get engaged with faculty and their classes.
“Get to know your teachers,” he said. “Most important are the relationships. Invite them. Don’t assume faculty don’t want to come or be involved. They need to be invited. Ask them to participate. I love going to things. I have to go at night because my days are kind of busy, but I love it when I get invited to things.”
Ralls discussed the importance of Open Educational Resources (OER), which embeds textbook information into the curriculum, saving students thousands on textbooks, which can often cost as much as tuition.
When asked what is the one thing he would never change about NOVA, he replied the diversity of the student body, race, gender and thought.
In answer to the question, “What is your go-to Starbucks drink,” Ralls said “First, I have to figure out which is small, medium or large, then I order just plain coffee. I just order a Grande coffee. I’m boring. When I was a kid, my folks would take me to Baskin-Robbins with all those different flavors. I’d look and look and I’d end up getting vanilla. I just loved vanilla.”
“Ask the Prez” on Facebook Live is a great opportunity to learn more about NOVA. Follow @NOVACommunityCollege on Facebook to join the conversation.