Rio president named Supporter of the Year

Dr. Michelle Johnston, University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College President
Dr. Michelle Johnston, University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College President

RIO GRANDE – University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College President Dr. Michelle Johnston has been selected as the OSU South Centers Supporter of the Year for 2016. The award was created to honor the strong commitments and collaborations between OSU South Centers and its supporters. Johnston received the award at the OSU South Centers’ 25th Anniversary Celebration.

“I am honored to receive this award,” Johnston said. “Our partnership with OSU South Centers contributes to our efforts to serve our communities and provide our students with quality learning environments to help them succeed.”

Director of the OSU South Centers Dr. Thomas Worley said Johnston received this year’s award for her efforts to continue expanding the program through student involvement and community outreach.

“Our partnerships with institutions and businesses are very important to us, so we want to recognize them for their collaborations with us. Dr. Johnston has provided continuing support for the institutions’ shared business development goals,” Worley said. “This partnership has been in place for several years, and when she came in as the new president at Rio, she immediately began showing her support and has sought out opportunities for new and creative ways to continue growing our partnership.”

Rio and OSU South Centers began its contract in 2009, with a primary focus of providing experiential learning formats to graduate and undergraduate business students. The collaboration, known as the “OSU-RIO Collaboration,” has since grown to include these shared learning formats for other educational programs at Rio.

“We feel it is important for our students to get first hand experiences in their respective fields while they are still enrolled at Rio,” Johnston said. “This helps them develop a better understanding of the expectations of their fields and gives them the additional experience on their resumes employers look for as they hire.”

Another part of the OSU-RIO Collaboration is a joint radio streaming and live television broadcast hosted by the two institutions. The broadcasts cover a variety of topics such as sports news, art, education, business, student spotlights and news from both campuses.

“These broadcasts serve our community by offering a closer look at all of the accomplishments Rio and OSU South Centers have been working hard to achieve as well as valuable information regarding Ohio’s higher education system,” Johnston said. “I enjoy working on these broadcasts and am so pleased to collaborate with OSU South Centers in this effort.”

Worley said he is thankful for Johnston’s support and participation in the broadcast collaboration.

“She has been very involved with these broadcasts and fully supported use of this media as an outlet to create more opportunities for the partnership,” Worley said. “I’m very grateful for the time and support she has put into making this collaboration a success.”

The programs can be watched live on Channel 17, Rio Grande Cable Access TV – Time Warner, or listened to online at