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Jackson College congratulates Dr. Douglas Estry, alumnus of Jackson Community College and recipient of the 2015 Michigan Community College Association Outstanding Alumnus Award.

Estry, who attended what was then Jackson Community College in 1967-68, has enjoyed a career in medical technology, research and higher education. He currently serves as Associate Provost for Undergraduate Education & Dean of Undergraduate Studies at Michigan State University, where he is responsible for overseeing university-level undergraduate initiatives that support and enhance the learning experience. He began his career at Michigan State University in 1983 as assistant professor, and today is a Professor of Pathobiology and Diagnostic Investigation appointed in the Biomedical Laboratory Diagnostics (BLD) Program. Estry has also been published in numerous books, manuscripts and abstracts, as well as participating in many workshops. He’s active in professional organizations and has received numerous honors throughout his career.

“This recognition is particularly meaningful for me as I have dedicated my career to higher education, and it started at what was then Jackson Community College,” Estry said. “Jackson College helped me to begin to develop much more than my academic ability. It started me on a journey to discovering purpose, it grounded me in the realities of post-secondary education and what it takes to succeed, it helped me focus on priorities and begin to plan, it helped me to see the importance of being both an independent and interdependent learner, and it provided a quality academic foundation on which to build my career.”

After Jackson, Estry went on to earn his Bachelor of Science in Biology from Western Michigan University, and both his Master of Science in Clinical Laboratory Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Pathology from Michigan State University.

As an educator, Estry sees the challenges facing higher education today. Helping students not only gain content knowledge, but develop the skills and abilities to work within and across complex systems, is important for students’ futures. “It’s not just about helping them think outside the box, it’s helping students realize that the box is constantly and rapidly changing and they have to know how to adapt innovatively to the change,” he said.

The MCCA award is presented to a Michigan community college alumnus based upon their achievement in their professional career, service to humanity, honors received, and a strong commitment to the purpose and philosophy of the community college mission. It was presented recently at the MCCA Summer Conference in Traverse City.

 “I am proud to call Dr. Estry an alumnus of Jackson College, and he provides the perfect example of what can be achieved as a community college graduate,” said Dr. Dan Phelan, JC president who nominated Estry for the award.

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