Barton Profile: Dan McFadden

Dan McFadden
(Story by Joe Vinduska/Photo by Brandon Steinert)

Dan McFadden
Coordinator of Student Housing

Bazine, Kan.

How long have you worked at BCC?
Thirteen years total. I worked here from 85-90 and then returned in 2004.

Where were you employed before working for Barton Community College?
Slawson Drilling

Can you describe what you do as the Coordinator of Student Housing and what your mission is as a department?
I handle day to day requests from students, from getting them a key, helping them get in their room or getting them a new ID. I also deal with disciplinary issues and assign rooms and roommates. Our goal is to make our residents’ housing experience as smooth of a process as possible so that they have a good learning environment here. If we can take the stress out of their housing experience, then that helps them be able to focus on their academics, and that is what we want.

How do Barton’s student housing options hold up to those at similar institutions?
I’ve visited almost all of the community colleges in Western Kansas and as far as accommodations go, you can’t beat Barton’s. They are very comparable. We have nice big rooms and good facilities.

What’s your favorite part about your job?
I enjoy being around young people. They are a lot of fun, and they’ve taught me a lot about human nature.

What is the most challenging part?
Dealing with disciplinary actions. We don’t have that many rules, but the ones we do have, we have to maintain. I’m a nice guy so I don’t particularly enjoy that part of it, but it goes with the territory.

What projects or housing related developments are you most excited about in the coming year or in the future?
We will probably be looking at building some new housing within the next ten years. That is nothing official, but I can see that as a potential timetable.

What is the strangest thing you’ve seen as the Coordinator of Student Housing?
We haven’t had anything here at Barton that has fit into my “OMG” list, but I’ve walked into some rooms that were incredibly messy. If their grandma had ever seen their room, they’d hang them up on a clothesline! Surprisingly, I’ve seen girls’ rooms that have been as messy as the guys’ rooms.

Any advice for people when they are choosing roommates?
Fill it out your application form. Don’t leave blanks, be honest and get it in early!

How do you like to spend time outside of work?
My wife and I like to travel, and I used to teach scuba diving at Barton, so we like to go to lakes and scuba dive. We have an RV so we like to go camping and see different places. We also enjoy bowling.

What is something people might not know about you?
I was a member of the inaugural class of Barton in 1969, and I was the first bass that was selected into the Hilltop Singers group.

What was the best part of attending Barton?
I had been at Emporia State before, and something I really liked about Barton that I didn’t find at Emporia was the camaraderie that we had as western Kansas kids. There’s something about that wholesomeness you find in kids from this area. Four of the guys that I met that year - we get together every year still, and we have a blast.

Describe how Barton has changed since you attended.
Just the amount of buildings that are out here now is amazing. It used to be so much smaller.  That and all the trees.

So, did you watch the Grammys?
No, I’m not a Grammy fan.

What were you watching instead?
I was probably watching the History Channel. Those are the kind of shows my wife and I watch, or we will watch a movie.

What are you going to do with your extra day in February?
The 29th of Feb. is just another day to me.

The groundhog determined that we get to have six more weeks of winter. How do you feel about that?
I don’t like winter in Kansas. I am not a cold weather fan. I tried to move down to Texas three times, and I wound up back here, but it’s a good place to be from.

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