El Centro is an Achieving the Dream College
All DCCCD colleges will be closed Friday, April 18 in observance of the holiday.  Classes will resume Monday, April 21.
El Centro News ( October 2013 )

Due to the impact of plans for the Kennedy Memorial, El Centro Downtown Campus (including Paramount Building) will be closed on Friday, November 22, 2013. Our Bill J. Priest campus and West Dallas campus will remain open that day.
(DALLAS) — Members of the Dallas County Community College District’s board of trustees nominated Dr. Joe May as the sole finalist for the position of DCCCD’s seventh chancellor, following a second round of interviews held in Dallas on Monday, Oct. 7. The nomination must be approved by a formal vote of the trustees, following a 21-day waiting period.

 May, with the approval of his nomination, will fill the position when Dr. Wright Lassiter Jr. retires on Dec. 31, 2013, after 27 years with the district — serving two decades as president of El Centro College and seven years as the district’s chancellor. May currently serves as president of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System. He previously served as system president for the Colorado Community College System and president of Pueblo Community College prior to that position.

LCTCS provides strategic management and support for Louisiana’s 13 community and technical colleges, enrolling more than 101,000 students in associate degree, technical diploma and industry-based certificate programs. Those programs are aligned with business, industry and local economies across Louisiana; that network enables students to find good jobs and build careers. May began his administration at LCTCS in 2007.
Texas law requires a 21-day waiting period before a formal vote to approve the nomination can be made. Board members will take a public vote on May’s appointment during their regularly scheduled monthly meeting on Tuesday, Nov. 5, at 4 p.m. in the board meeting room (lower level) at 1601 S. Lamar St. in Dallas.
"Members of the DCCCD Board of Trustees, who as a group comprised the executive search committee led by Trustee Bob Ferguson, have worked diligently on this national search process since late spring, with the guidance of our search firm, Greenwood/Asher and Associates Inc., Academic Search,” said Jerry Prater, chairman of the DCCCD board of trustees. “We are confident that our nominee, Dr. May, has the experience and the vision that our district needs during these challenging times.”

Prater added, “We want the district to continue to grow and expand its leadership role among community colleges in this country — a precedent set by our current chancellor, Dr. Wright Lassiter. We are grateful to Dr. Lassiter for his leadership, his service and his lifelong commitment to students and higher education.”

“I look forward to working with the outstanding faculty, staff, administrators and students at each of the DCCCD colleges,” said May. “I am enthusiastic about partnering with some of the best business and civic leaders in the nation as we continue to build on DCCCD’s excellent reputation in academic and workforce areas. Returning to Texas and embracing the challenges that community colleges face across the state is exciting. Jobs, careers and college completion are critical to our success.”
May started his career in higher education in 1978 as an adjunct faculty member with DCCCD when Cedar Valley College opened. Based on that experience, May built on his belief that community colleges are the solution to the challenges that individuals, employers and communities face.

DCCCD’s new chancellor, who is a native of East Texas, was the first member of his family to attend college. He earned both his bachelor’s degree in social rehabilitation services and his master’s degree in counseling from Stephen F. Austin State University (Texas) and his doctorate in education from Texas A&M University-Commerce.

His higher education experience includes teaching at the community college and university levels, serving as an academic administrator in many different capacities and conducting higher education consulting for Best Associates, based in Dallas.

May’s leadership has led to a number of key accomplishments during his tenure at LCTCS:

  • The creation of Rebuilding America’s Middle Class, a national consortium of community colleges that is dedicated to ensuring that everyone has an opportunity to pursue the American dream. (May, as president of RAMC, was invited to testify before Congress in 2012 to share his views about improving operational efficiency and controlling the cost of college.)
  • The reprioritization of community and technical college offerings in Louisiana; community college graduates in the state now are surpassing university-graduate earnings by 8.6 percent.
  • An enrollment increase from 71,000 students six years ago to more than 160,000 students now (or more than 101,000 unduplicated enrollments).
  • The launch of Work Ready U, a program that increased the number of adults who are receiving basic literacy education and workforce skills by 49,000; Work Ready U provides knowledge and skills that are needed to succeed in today’s economy.
  • The creation of more than 35 separate pieces of legislation that have enhanced post-secondary education and workforce training for Louisiana residents.
  • Fundraising efforts to secure $600 million for more than 50 advanced technology centers throughout Louisiana.

An accomplished advocate, May also has been involved extensively in crafting community-college/public-private partnerships, which support economic development and job creation. He has provided consulting services for new community college initiatives in Japan, the United Kingdom, Russia and Saudi Arabia.

May is the current president of the National Council of State Directors of Community Colleges and RAMC, and is a member of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, the National Workforce Solutions Advisory Board, Single Stop USA’s advisory board, COMBASE (and its current vice president), the ACT Workforce Council and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Metrics Initiative, among many other state and national organizations. He has written and presented a number of articles to audiences and groups across the U.S. as well.

May was named CEO of the Year for the Southern Region by the Association of Community College Trustees; received alumni awards from Stephen F. Austin State University and Texas A&M University-Commerce; is a Rotary International Paul Harris Fellow; and has received multiple honors and awards from business, community and service organizations.

May’s return to Texas also means that he will be closer to his parents, children and three grandchildren.
DCCCD, the largest community college system in Texas, serves more than 83,000 credit and 20,000 noncredit students. The seven individually accredited colleges in the district’s system are Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake and Richland — plus Dallas Colleges Online. Additional locations include five community education campuses in Dallas County, a District Service Center in Mesquite and administrative offices in downtown Dallas. DCCCD was founded in 1965 and has enrolled more than 2 million students in classes throughout Dallas County, plus distance learners from across the country and around the world.

The district will celebrate its 50th anniversary of student success and community service in 2015-2016.

(DALLAS) — El Centro College is one of 12 community colleges in the country selected to participate in the Walmart Brighter Futures 2.0 Project, which is supported by a $3.5 million grant from the Walmart Foundation to the League for Innovation in the Community College.

The project seeks to provide low-income adults and older youths with the skills necessary to obtain middle-skill jobs, enabling them to become financially self-sufficient. The project also is modeled to provide participants with the confidence they need so that they know they have acquired the skills employers want; that awareness will empower them to document those skills and communicate them effectively to employers.

Over the next two and one-half years, the League will work with the select group of 12 community colleges to help the institutions develop programs and services that will move low-income, low-skill individuals into middle-skill jobs. The League will disseminate the best practices from the project to other community colleges throughout the country.

In addition to El Centro College, which is part of the Dallas County Community College District, the 11 other community colleges funded are: Anne Arundel Community College (Md.); Central Piedmont Community College (N.C.); Cuyahoga Community College (Ohio); Delta College (Mich.); Kirkwood Community College (Iowa); Maricopa Community Colleges (Ariz.); Miami Dade College (Fla.); Moraine Valley Community College (Ill.); Santa Fe College (Fla.); Seattle Community Colleges (Wash.); and Sinclair Community College (Ohio).

When he announced the grants, Dr. Gerardo E. de los Santos, president and CEO of the League for Innovation in the Community College, expressed confidence that the Walmart Brighter Futures project will have a profound and positive impact beyond the 12 colleges.

“As with an earlier project funded by the Walmart Foundation, Brighter Futures 2.0 will lead to best practices that will expand the capacity of community colleges to enhance middle-skill job training opportunities. The League will be delighted to share the work of the 12 colleges with colleges around the country,” said de los Santos.

Through the project, each selected community college will receive up to $233,333 to provide training and services for the targeted individuals that will qualify them for middle-skill positions in the workforce. The training will focus on jobs that require 21st- century skills in an effort to provide a promising career future. In addition to specific job training, individuals will receive career counseling and job acquisition skills such as job search, résumé writing and interviewing techniques.

Dr. Paul McCarthy, president of El Centro College, said, “El Centro College appreciates the generosity of the Walmart Foundation and the leadership of the League for Innovation that makes this work possible. We are honored by our selection. This program is fully aligned with El Centro’s mission, which is ‘Changing Lives through Higher Education.’ El Centro’s staff members look forward to working with our national partners, plus our local business and community partners, to help make a difference by assisting low-income individuals prepare for middle-skill jobs.”

“The Walmart Foundation supports programs that provide people with ways to improve their lives through skills training, job readiness, job placement and support services,” said Julie Gehrki, senior director of the Walmart Foundation. “We are proud to continue our work with the League for Innovation and expect to help 9,000 workers gain the skills they need for today’s job market through this continued effort.”

Students in grades 6 through 12 and their parents are encouraged to join us for this special program about attending college. This event is free and open to the public.

When and Where Are Las Llaves Events Held?

Las Llaves hosts two events each year — one in the fall and another in the spring. Las Llaves events are held at a different college or university campus each time.

The next Las Llaves event will be held:

Saturday, Oct. 26, 2013
8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
University of North Texas at Dallas
Maps and Directions
7300 University Hills Blvd.
Dallas, TX 75241

View the event flier (PDF - 389KB)

Want More Information?

Email LasLlavesDelExito@dcccd.edu or call:

  • Yadira Coggins, Dallas ISD, 972-925-3632
  • Perla Molina, DCCCD Office of Outreach, Recruitment and Community Engagement, 214-378-1771
  • DCCCD’s Spanish line, 214-378-1713

Quick Links

El Centro Campuses

Downtown Campus

801 Main Street
Dallas, TX 75202
Phone: 214.860.2000
Web: Downtown Campus

Bill J Priest Campus

1402 Corinth Street
Dallas, TX 75215
Phone: 214.860.5900
Web: BJP Campus

West Campus

3330 N Hampton Rd
Dallas, TX 75212
Phone: 972.391.1400
Web: West Campus
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