With PCC awakening from its summer vacation slumber, the campus was again flooded with a vast sea of new faces. From meeting people to finding classes, even the most eager and hopeful could have had a hard time starting at a different school.Although it was a struggle for many, the transition could not have been easier for new college President Dr. Paulette Perfumo.
Like most newcomers, Perfumo had to make quick adjustments to the PCC environment.
But it wasn’t changing schools that would pose a challenge.
Being hired only weeks before the fall semester began, Perfumo had little time to catch up fast.
With years of experience in college administration, Perfumo was able to continue where former PCC President Dr. James Kossler left off and started planning her own visions for the college.
As the driving force for her plans, Perfumo stated, “I’m all about the students and I will always be a teacher at heart.”
Perfumo is currently working with Kindred Murrillo, vice president of administrative services, to strengthen the campus’ computer capabilities “to be much more highly effective and meet the needs of our students,” she said.
She also expressed a desire to be accessible by mentoring a student each semester and holding forums for students to voice their concerns.
“There’s just a real commitment to really wanting to be involved beyond the classroom walls [at PCC]. And that’s important to me,” added Perfumo.
Through her VISION 2020 plan, she hopes to assess where the campus should be in the year 2020 by getting feedback from the local community regarding issues like creating new student services or certification programs.
In the tradition of a program she started at other colleges, Perfumo is in the process of starting a President’s Ambassadors Club, which she hopes to select members for in spring. This club will reach out to high schools and junior high schools by giving PCC student leaders a chance to show prospective students what PCC is all about.
“One of my visions for PCC is for us to do a lot more outreach to our feeder high schools and junior highs,” she said.
Perfumo’s passion for teaching and education began when she performed and taught her mother’s first grade classes about instrumental music.
“I loved it. It was just magic to have all of those eyes and minds tuned in,” she reminisced.
From there, she continued to pursue teaching and education, moving on to receive her Bachelor of Science from Oregon State University. Perfumo later attained her master’s degree in education and Ph.D. in higher education administration from UCLA.
Her educational background guided her to the top of several community colleges, ultimately leading her to PCC. Although Perfumo was a candidate for presidency at College of the Redwoods and College of the Desert, she was drawn to PCC by a “genuine commitment to student success” and “leadership of the college,” Perfumo said.
“I’m just excited to partner with and grow on the collective wisdom of the entire staff here to really just take it to the next level,” she added.
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