SWOSU Alumni Association Board Member
Jerry Burch of Hutchinson, KS is a member of the Board of Directors for the Southwestern Oklahoma State University Alumni Association in Weatherford.
Mr. Burch graduated from Sayre High School and attended Sayre Jr. College, where he received an associate’s degree. He completed his B.A. in 1989 and then a master’s degree in educational administration in 1991 from Southwestern Oklahoma State University. Jerry has been a public school administrator since 1991. He has served as the superintendent of schools for Unified School District 309 Nickerson – South Hutchinson since 2003.
SWOSU is quite a family tradition for Jerry. His wife Lori (Conner) Burch also received an associate’s degree from SWOSU at Sayre. His father-in-law Paul Conner and his son Todd (who are both on SWOSU’s Alumni Board), and Todd’s wife Niki have all graduated from SWOSU.
Mr. Burch serves on numerous committees and councils in south central Kansas. He is a member of United School Administrators of Kansas, American Association of School Administrators, Kansas Association of School Business Officials, Migrant Directors Association, Kansas Association of Bilingual Education and Rotary International.
When asked why he has chosen to serve on the SWOSU Alumni Association Board of directors, Mr. Burch had this to say, “Being an educator, I believe our best investment is made in the lives of our students. The education provided at SWOSU has changed my life providing a new direction. I will continue to pledge my support by serving on this board and hopefully make things better for the next generation of students.”
In a message to his hometown residence, Mr. Burch said, “So many things have changed over the years but there is one constant the will rise above all – learning. A day does not pass that I do not learn something new. Human Beings are always learning, changing, adapting and growing. SWOSU is great partner for Western Oklahoma and a leader to provide the opportunities for individuals to pursue a new direction in your life. Education of our populace is the future of our success. Fifty years ago, public education produced individuals for an industrial nation - that nation no longer exist. We are changing how we prepare our student for the future, but it takes time and is sometimes very painful. More and more workers must retrain themselves in order to prepare for the new jobs of the future. Eighty percent of our current workforce requires training above and beyond the secondary level. Public education must rise to the challenge and prepare our student for a knowledge based economy and we must provide them with the tools to work in that new environment. As college graduates we need to be advocates for a strong public educational system that leads to a strong post-secondary education and/or training.”