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McNeese State President Dr. Phillip C. Williams and Sowela Chancellor Dr. Neil Aspinwall. (Special to the American Press)

McNeese State President Dr. Phillip C. Williams and Sowela Chancellor Dr. Neil Aspinwall. (Special to the American Press)

Editorial: McNeese, Sowela partnership win-win situation for us all

Last Modified: Sunday, September 08, 2013 7:34 PM

"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much,” Helen Keller once said.

McNeese State University and Sowela Technical Community College know from firsthand experience just how true that is.

The two schools formalized a partnership last week that will allow cross-enrollment and housing opportunities for their students.

For nearly a decade, Sowela students have been able to live on McNeese’s campus when rooms were available, now they can enroll in freshman or sophomore classes offered by the school, too.

“It’s important for the students in the Southwest Louisiana region to have multiple choices when it comes to education,” McNeese President Philip Williams said. “To have Sowela and McNeese working together is to everybody’s benefit.”

The collaboration has been in the works for about a year.

“What better way to get them acquainted with the McNeese campus than to have them living here,” Williams said. “If their future plans call for them to be at McNeese, why not have them rooming at McNeese in the first place.”

We couldn’t agree more. Teamwork is the key to any group’s ability to get things done. And as a new school term begins, this partnership between McNeese and Sowela allows them to move to a better future

Sowela Chancellor Neil Aspinwall said the agreement “builds strength between the two institutions.”

“Lake Charles is very fortunate to have a community college and university in the same town,” he said. “Although, we have two different missions, we have to work together. A lot of people think we’re competitors, and we’re not.”

This partnership is a win-win situation. The better we can prepare our students today the better their opportunities to thrive tomorrow.

• • •

This editorial was written by a member of the American Press Editorial Board. Its content reflects the collaborative opinion of the Board, whose members include Bobby Dower, Jim Beam, Crystal Stevenson and Donna Price.

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