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December 21--  As 2011 draws to a close, it's also the end of the presidency of Dr. John Black at East Georgia College in Swainsboro.  He assumed the job in the Fall of 2004.

"I'm most proud of the faculty and staff that make East Georgia College what it is and certainly the students who come to us in ever-increasing numbers every year.  Our enrollment has grown each year, our Swainsboro campus has added athletics, student housing and a four-year opportunity for students.  Also, our Statesboro instructional site has the most dedicated people there to help students make the transition from high school to college.  I'm proud of the folks as much as anything," Dr. Black observes.{mosimage}

With the additon of a four-year degree program in Biology, Dr. Black is hopeful the college will help develop much needed science teachers for schools in Georgia.

"We're going to try and grow our own by identifying students with a science bent early in their school years and encourage them.  Perhaps some school districts will try to do some scholarships so when their students come to East Georgia their education will be paid for if they return to their home schools to teach science," he says.

Meanwhile, Dr. Black's successor is already on campus.  The University System of Georgia has named Robert Boehmer, the associate Provost for Academic Planning at the University of Georgia, as interim president starting January 1.

"I think he brings all of the tools to the job and I fully expect he will be the new president of East Georgia College within six to eight months.  He's going to move us to the next level," Dr. Black predicts.

Dr. Black and his wife plan to retire in Augusta where he started his career in education at Augusta College in 1967.