Northeast Tech Claremore is under new management as the former Director of Business and Industry Services Liberty Shere stepped into the role of assistant superintendent and Claremore campus director.
Shere is a life-long Rogers County resident, who attended Sequoyah Public Schools and Rogers State University.
During college, Shere began working as a software developer at Sequoyah Software and for a small business she ran with her husband for 15 years, Lonnie's Window Tint, Mufflers and Accessories.
From 2007 to 2012, Shere served as a business and information technology instructor at Chelsea and the Sequoyah Public Schools, an experience that pushed her to pursue a Master’s Degree in educational leadership and administration from Oklahoma State University. While pursuing her degree, Shere was and audit analyst for Cherokee Nation Businesses.
Shere has worked for Northeast Technology Center for almost seven years, first as an instructor at the Afton campus, and then as an administrator in Pryor.
“I feel very fortunate that my professional experience has had a really good blend of educational experience and experience in industry,” Shere said, adding that it offers her a unique perspective and approach as an administrator.
“It helps me operate in both worlds, because I understand the challenges from an educational perspective, but I also understand what businesses are facing,” Shere said. “I’ve worked for small companies, large companies, and now in education. Not everybody gets afforded all of those opportunities, so I feel fortunate for that.”
Both of Shere’s daughters attended NTC, and Shere added that she was excited to take on the new role and position in Claremore, in part, because her 2-week-old grandbaby lives along her drive home from work.
As campus director, Shere’s responsibilities include: ensuring instructors have the resources they need to be effective, ensuring procedures are in place to provide the best possible learning environment for students, maintaining the facilities, and meeting the education and transportation needs of students, and serving at the public face of Northeast Tech in Rogers County.
“We want to make sure we’re serving the needs of our sending schools while also listening to what our community needs and what skills the business leaders in the community say our students need,” Shere said. “You have to constantly being having that communication with your industry partners. At a career tech, it is even more critical that we are giving them skills that will get them the jobs that are out there.”
In June, Claremore Campus Director Rick Reimer retired after 33 years of service to Northeast Tech. Reimer helped to build the Claremore campus from the literal ground up in 2006.
“I want to give him credit for handing over a really awesome facility,” Shere said. “He built a really good staff that I’ve been able to inherit, a lot of really good people. So I thank him for setting me on a firm foundation, and I want to take that and continue the good work that is being done with the good staff and faculty I have here.”
Reimer’s administration had organized visioning committees to help elaborate a future direction for the school and looking for opportunities to expand.
Currently each NTC instructor has an advisory board they meet with once a year, made up of industry leaders from the field they teach.
“Something I want to push as a new campus director is getting those instructors out in industry more,” Shere said, explaining that NTC would, “provide them support so they can take some time out of the classroom to be out in the industry.”
Over the next decade, Shere said, she foresees NTC doubling it’s course offerings and expanding the physical campus.
Technical schools across the board, Shere said, will only increase in demand and opportunities, as they continue to be a fast-paced and flexible option for continuing education.
“Our community is growing, their needs are growing, and we need to grow, too,” Shere said. “Along with maintaining what we have now, in the next five years I hope to be able to seek out where the needs are, find new programs we can add, and expand our campus so we can serve those needs.”
“What we do is important, it benefits individuals, and it benefits our community as a whole, so the more of that we can do, the better,” Shere said. “Our roots are here. Rogers County is our home, and we want to see it continue to grow.”