News Leadership Maryland Class Visits Pac - Garrett College
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Campus News

July 18th, 2023

Leadership Maryland class visits PAC

Panel discussion highlights PAC partners' collaborative nature

The partnership that supports the Performing Arts Center at Garrett College was the focus of last Thursday's Leadership Maryland field trip to the PAC.

"The collaborative efforts of the groups involved are a model for other parts of the state," said David Fike, Leadership Maryland's executive director. "The local Garrett County community will be the beneficiary of these positive efforts for years to come."

The panel discussed how five separate entities – Garrett College, Garrett County Public Schools, Garrett County Government, the Garrett Lakes Arts Festival, and the Garrett County Arts Council – developed a unique partnership to support PAC operations.

"Every partner brought something unique to the table, both in terms of expertise and financial support," said Dr. Richard Midcap, Garrett College's president, who participated in the panel discussion. "The 10-year Memorandum of Understanding developed and implemented by the partners ensures the long-term fiscal sustainability of this important community center."

Mary Cummings, executive director of both the PAC and GLAF, noted the PAC meets a critical local need.

"The PAC is essential for our community, which has a long history and appreciation for the performing arts," said Cummings, who also served on the panel. "We wanted to share with the Leadership Maryland class the unique partnership we've been able to create for a project that is so important for the people who live here and those who visit our area."

Julie Yoder, the College's dean of Continuing Education & Workforce Development, noted the PAC also supports economic development. "The PAC offers state-of-the-art facilities, and built-in supportive services, to host conferences, workshops, employee trainings, meetings, and other special events," said Yoder, who was also a panelist. "This facility supports economic development at both the local and regional levels."

leadership maryland

Photos by John Rudd

Members of last Thursday’s Performing Arts Center at Garrett College panel discussion included, from left to right, Garrett College President Dr. Richard Midcap, Garrett College Dean of Continuing Education & Workforce Development Julie Yoder,

Garrett County Commission Chair Paul Edwards, and Garrett County Public Schools Chief Academic Officer Dr. Nicole Miller. The fifth panelist, PAC Executive Director Mary Cummings, is not pictured.

leadership maryland

Photos by John Rudd

The 2023 Leadership Maryland class visited the Performing Arts Center at Garrett College last Thursday.

Dr. Nicole Miller, chief academic officer for Garrett County Public Schools, also stressed the value of the collaborations taking place around the PAC.

"The partnership between the Performing Arts Center and Garrett County Public Schools has provided students with an amazing opportunity to perform in a state-of-the-art facility designed specifically to enhance the performing arts experience, thereby allowing avenues for new learning to take place," said Miller.

Fike noted that the 53-member 2023 Leadership Maryland class "is a highly diverse group of executive-level individuals representing private, public, and non-profit sectors from all over the State of Maryland."

The organization's 30th class is participating in an eight-month program that concludes in December. The core of the program is five, two-day sessions focusing on Maryland's five main geographic regions, including this session in Western Maryland.

More than 100 experts representing Maryland's business, government, education and non-profit communities are serving as panelists and guest speakers during the 2023 sessions.

"This was a great group to speak with, and they were actively engaged in the conversation," said Garrett County Commission Chair Paul Edwards, who was a member of the panel. "I'm glad they were able to get out to Garrett County, as it was a great opportunity for them, and for us.

"They were definitely interested in what we are doing out here in a variety of ways, and the discussion illustrated that," added Edwards.

According to its website, Leadership Maryland's mission is to "connect, empower, and inspire a diverse community of leaders across Maryland to drive meaningful change throughout the state." That mission aligns with its vision to be the "premiere statewide program for current and future leaders who can move Maryland forward."