Briefly Noted: JCCC president’s comments on student body’s financial means draw scrutiny; Westwood hosting ‘Coffee with the Community’ event Saturday

Johnson County Community College.

Star editorial board takes issue with JCCC president’s claim that students don’t struggle financially. Johnson County Community College president Joe Sopcich’s comments to a member of the board of trustees about the financial means of the student body at large have drawn criticism in recent days. Chris Reeves, a progressive political activist, was seated near Sopcich and JCCC trustee Angeliina Lawson at a lunch in Washington, D.C., and overheard Sopcich tell Lawson that students at JCCC don’t generally struggle with finances. The comments came in response to Lawson voicing concerns about the impact of a $1 per credit hour tuition increase. Sopcich has not denied making the comments, but JCCC representatives have said that the remarks were taken out of context in a larger conversation. On Thursday, he directly addressed the issue at the board of trustees meeting, saying that “This posting has the effect of making a statement of intended hyperbole sound like a statement of belief.”

This week the Kansas City Star’s Editorial Board weighed in on the issue, saying that, despite Sopcich’s remarks that he sees “a whole lot of very nice cars” in the school’s lot, there are plenty of students who struggle financially. [Contrary to JCCC president’s comment, there aren’t a lot of fancy cars in school lot — Kansas City Star]

Westwood hosting Coffee with the Community event Saturday morning. Westwood will host a Coffee with the Community event on Saturday from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. at Conroy’s, 4730 Rainbow Blvd. Members of the police department as well as John Sullivan from public works and city manager Fred Sherman will be on hand available to discuss community issues in an informal setting.