Matthew Groshong, the interim dean of enrollment services, retired after 15 years of service at Bellevue College. His last day at the college was Jan. 9 and the retirement party will be held on Jan. 22.
At age 63, Groshong reflected upon his upcoming retirement. “It’s sort of like you blink your eyes and you’re thirty years older […] there’s something funny about time, time gets warped and the years go by […] it’ll be nice to have unstructured time […] I’m happy where I am,” said Groshong. Born and raised in Corvallis, Oregon, Groshong moved to Seattle in 1979.
In 1989, Groshong worked at the North Seattle College as an adviser. He was involved with student conduct and was in charge of the testing center there before coming to Bellevue College. At Bellevue, he started out as an assistant director of the testing center. Later, he became an associate dean and then assumed his current office. He became dean of student success around 2007, and then interim dean of enrollment swervices in April of 2013. “So I’ve been in high education for 25 years.”
Groshong believes his biggest accomplishment here at BC is making the class First Year Experience, FYE, mandatory. “There are a lot of students who wouldn’t have taken [the FYE class], and those students are usually the ones who needed it most […] students will always have something to learn from FYE.” The goal of the FYE is to introduce students to diversity, to help them understand the differences between individuals and to teach them how to get along with one another. Groshong believes, “One of the greatest things that anybody can learn how to do is to truly understand and live with all the diversity we have in the college, in the country and in the world.” The class also teaches incoming students how to succeed in college.
Groshong shared his joy with working at the college: “The people here work very hard and I’m honored to be part of the group.” His memorable moments are working with other staff and faculty of the college to change procedure and policies for the better and creating new programs to benefit students and to improve their success. Groshong says that the people and the students here at the college are what he will miss the most. Furthermore, Groshong shared his appreciation for the diverse and hardworking employees at BC.
Interviews are being set up by the vice president to take over Groshong’s role as interim dean of enrollment services.
Groshong also has complete confidence that his department will continue to thrive after his retirement. “They’re very, very strong people who work in these department and I have no worries whatsoever; and with the new person, it’s just going to get better. New ideas come in, new energy. It’s all good.”