Archived Story

Putting a face with a name

Published 11:56am Friday, April 5, 2013

Meet Susan Burrow, acting president at  CACC

Susan Burrow, who was named acting president of Central Alabama Community college in February, has worked in Alabama’s two year college system for 26 years.

Burrow comes to CACC from Bevill State Community College, where she was in charge of running the college’s Hamilton Campus. Burrow was also the dean of academic transfer for all of BSCC’s four campuses.

Though she has now made a career out of education, it wasn’t the first path Burrow set out on.

“I am really a people person,” Burrow said. “I started out as a finance major, but I quickly learned I needed more human interaction and service to others. It was the service and human component that drew me to education.”

During her time in the two-year college system, Burrow has done everything from teaching nursing to serving as associate dean.

About halfway through her career in education, Burrow took her nursing skills in a different direction.  Education became her part-time job, and she set out in private practice as a nurse practitioner.

“I loved it, but I wanted to come back to education,” Burrows said. “It was much more lucrative financially, but it wasn’t where my heart was.”

Burrow then returned to what she loved – Alabama community colleges.

“I understand that these colleges are the heart of communities, and they are very highly valued,” Burrow said. “I see them as an economic engine – it helps bring economic development to the community.”

Burrow said two-year colleges also offer something that four-year universities don’t.

“They provide educational opportunities to folks who would have never entertained that possibility,” Burrow said. “(A two-year college) is a great affordable opportunity too for those who want to start their educational career here and move on to a four-year university.”

Now that Burrow is at the helm of CACC, she hopes to help steer the college into the future.

“The thing I would like to bring to CACC is a sense of stability, and I want to look out on the horizon and see what is coming,” Burrow said. “How can we meet the demands for the future? Alexander City is in a transformative stage, and that is a golden opportunity to be looking forward.”

Burrow said the college needs to rethink how they do things.

“I would like to build stronger partnerships with the local K-12 systems and university partners as well – those are some of the big things I would like to look at,” Burrow said. “I know (CACC) also has existing partnerships with local industries, but I think there is a great potential for growth there. I would like to see us build stronger relationships.”