Staff spotlight: Dr. David Wood, Dean of Performance Excellence
Dr. David Wood has a full plate this year since being named
Dean of Performance Excellence. He is responsible for coordinating all the
major college-wide initiatives, including accreditation, Foundations of
Excellence, the Baldrige Performance Excellence Program, and Student Learning
Before being named dean, Dr. Wood was Director of Institutional
Research Effectiveness and Planning. He says the new position of dean was created
because SAC had so many major projects going on at one time and no one person
on the executive team could tackle them all. Dr. Wood is now a member of CET – the College Executive Team and offices in the Fletcher Administration Center.
A native of San Antonio, Dr. Wood joined San Antonio College
in 2002 as a professor of astronomy. He
graduated from Trinity University in 1993 with his bachelor’s degree in math
and physics. He earned his doctorate
from the University of Arizona in 2000. Prior to joining SAC he taught at New Mexico
Highlands University in Las Vegas, N.M.
“I was looking to come back to San Antonio at the same time
that the SAC astronomy department was expanding.”
While he is no longer the adviser for the SAC Astronomy
Club, Dr. Wood still teaches two astronomy classes online to SAC students. He is also on the advisory board of the
Challenger Learning Center, set to open at SAC in 2014.
“In my first year (at SAC) I wrote the astronomy program
review,” Dr. Wood said.
Does he miss the college classroom? “I miss interacting with students on a
day-to-day basis.” He feels that he
always has the option to return to full time teaching.
“As a professor I had an impact of 400 to 500 students in a
year,” he said. But in his new role his reach is upwards of 35,000 students.
“I’m probably more visible now.”
On the personal side, Dr. Wood is the oldest of eight children
and all of his family lives in the area. He is uncle to 13 (soon to be 14)
nieces and nephews. A number of his
siblings attended SAC – and all of the Wood children are college
graduates. His mother once taught in
Catholic school; and his father, a former Army helicopter pilot, works in the
His hobbies include writing, computer programming, playing
soccer, and cheering on his favorite teams: the Spurs, Astros, Texans and
Team USA Soccer. A self-professed huge sci-fi fan, Dr. Wood’s favorites include “Battlestar Galactica” and he never misses
an episode of “The Big Bang Theory.”
We wrapped up the interview with a few questions to Dr. Wood
like those posed by Vanity Fair magazine (which are, in turn, taken from the
What is your idea of
What is your greatest
figure do you most admire?
Which living person
do you most admire?
What trait do you
most deplore in others?
Who is your favorite
hero of fiction?
Commander Adama (“Battlestar
If you had a
superpower what would it be?
To stop time.