For Ernie Troy Hughes, community is key.
Winona State’s new Vice President for Advancement and Executive Director of the WSU Foundation was drawn to the strong sense of community he felt when he first arrived on campus, and he believes the university is uniquely positioned for global impact because of its integrated presence in the community.
“One of the keys for any university today is to show collaboration and to align curriculum to the needs of the community,” said Hughes. “With projects like the Education Village, WSU is listening to what’s going on in the State of Minnesota and in the community of Winona.”
Hughes, who most recently served as Director of Community Economic Development for the Southern University System in Louisiana, looks forward to redefining the meaning of “advancement” for Winona State.
“We want people to think of advancement as more than asking for money; to look at its true meaning of advancing the university forward,” said Hughes.
“We want to create a culture of philanthropy in which people know they are giving through Winona State University rather than giving to Winona State.”
“Today’s donors want to be involved, to see and feel that their investment has a positive impact,” said Hughes. “WSU’s rich legacy of service and its commitment to a strong student experience will help us to demonstrate the important role advancement can play in the future of WSU.”
Hughes is excited to spend time getting to know the campus and community while helping to develop and instill strategic institutional vision and values.
“In me, you have a leader who is driven and a team player,” said Hughes. “I am very goal oriented, an effective communicator, and I believe in helping others to do their best.”
Most of all, Hughes is looking forward to becoming an active member of the Winona State community of learners. “Choosing to work at WSU presents me with significant opportunities for educational, professional, personal and cultural growth. I can’t wait to be part of the WSU legacy of service.