Dr. Paul Illich was named president of Southeast Community College on July 1, 2014, after serving McLennan Community College in Waco, Texas, for 17 years. His most recent position there was vice president of research, planning and information technology and as senior director of institutional effectiveness and planning.
Illich has led Southeast Community College (SCC) to a number of significant accomplishments, including the development of the College’s 2015-19 Strategic Plan, which has provided clear direction in relation to program development, enrollment, student success, financial management, facilities planning, and program and partnership development. The College also completed its first comprehensive Facilities Master Plan in 2016, which led to the launch and recent completion of renovation and new construction projects to expand the College’s capacity to provide a qualified skilled workforce and affordable access to higher education.
Other significant accomplishments at SCC include the following:
- The opening of six learning centers throughout the 15-county service area.
- Successful conversion from a Quarter to Semester Calendar system in Fall 2019.
- Complementation and successful implementation of the College’s 2015-2019 Strategic Plan, which represented SCC’s first institutional level strategic plan.
- Successful institutional accreditation review in 2017.
- Implementation of an enrollment management model that involves the building of course schedules based on course demand.
- Opening of the Lincoln Campus Career Academy that enrolls approximately 600 high school students in dual credit courses on the SCC Lincoln Campus.
- Provided oversight during the College’s recent accreditation review to ensure SCC is in good standing with accreditation body.
- Increased staffing levels in all key areas of the College.
- Added capital advancement function to the institution.
- Launched new branding and marketing campaign in 2019.
- Added 26 new programs and awards from 2015 to 2021.
Illich has served as president of the Joint Board of The Career Academy, a collaborative partnership with Lincoln Public Schools, and has served on the Lincoln Partnership for Economic Development Committee, the Greater Lincoln Workforce Economic Development Board, and the National Center for Excellence in Electronics Board. From 2015 to 2018, he served as the chairperson of the Nebraska Community College Association Chief Executive Officers, comprised of presidents from five of the state’s six community colleges.
Illich has a Ph.D. in experimental psychology from Texas A&M University in College Station, a Master of Science degree from Texas A&M University in experimental psychology, a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology with a computer science minor from Texas State University in San Marcos, and an Associate of Arts degree from Blinn College in Brenham, Texas.
Illich is a dynamic and visionary leader who believes in data-driven decision making and in the value of creating a culture of opportunity, creativity and intellectual and personal respect. He is married to Gail Illich, a mathematics educator, and together they are the parents of three children.