Following a dinner with a group of students who represented a cross-section of the student population, the Seward County Community College/Board of Trustees met Monday, May 7 for their regular board meeting.
“I have been to several student/board dinners and each time I hear the exact same thing,” said Rick Brenneman, board member, “and that’s how the instructors care about the students. I think they realize they aren’t going to get that kind of personal care at a larger college or university.”
The board welcomed the Saints Basketball Team, which placed third in the nation at the National Junior College Athletic Association tournament, along with Coach Bryan Zollinger and Assistant Coach Jason Sautter.
Deverall Biggs, who was awarded the prestigious NABC All-American Award, thanked the board and the college for their support. He said he especially has benefited from working with such a great team, one he will miss.
Board Chair Ron Oliver thanked the team for representing the college so well.
Donetta Dreitz, registrar, presented the graduation program to the board, which they will participate in Saturday, May 12. She said there are 366 candidates for graduation.
Kent Colvin, Saints Booster Club president, and Lisa Hatcher, Foundation board representative, presented an overview of the different fund-raising events that occur on campus throughout the year and encouraged the board to hire a professional fund-raiser.
“We really are not overlapping that much,” Colvin said about the Foundation and Booster Club, “so we probably have some opportunity to go out and raise more dollars.” He has suggested an ongoing online auction that would require a lot of time or effort.
He said that the majority of the dollars are raised locally, and there is no one person in charge of fundraising like there should be.
He suggested the board consider hiring a full-time professional to oversee all the fundraising, someone who has experience and knows how to knock on doors.
“It’s not just about more scholarships,” Hatcher said. “It’s about facilities, dorms and programs, and those are large dollars that none of us are prepared to tackle,” Hatcher said.
The board approved a program review for the Fine Arts Department, including Vocal and Instrumental Music, Drama and Visual Arts. The Fine Arts Program offers students and the community opportunities to participate in a wide range of course offerings and artistic experiences. The three programs used to have separate program reviews but the instructors for each program realized they could learn from one another and had several things in common.
Aesthetics, critical thinking or reflection, global appreciation of the arts and creative expression are a part of each of these programs, said Susan Copas, two-dimensional art instructor.
One action plan involves the collection of data.
“We came to learn we need to understand where our students are going, what is their next step, how have we served, were they satisfied”, said Allison Bridget Chambers, director of theater. “We need to following them once they graduate and track their progress.”
Dustin Farmer, three-dimensional art instructor, explained that the department realized they needed to improve their marketing of their programs as well. There are people in the community who aren’t aware the college has an art department that is accessible to everyone. The department is working on revamping their website, supporting public radio, creating facebook ads and becoming better connected with fine art entities in the community.
“We need to find those people with a specific interest in the fine arts.” he said. “We also need to be a resource for the fine art entities in the area.”
The Fine Arts area is also looking at new programs, courses, software and hardware that will further enhance the program through advanced technology, said Magda Silva, vocal music instructor.
The board heard an annual update of the Library. The physical reference collection and shelves have been retired and moved to digital resources. Matthew Pannkuk, director of the library, also reported that the library continues to provide lunch in the library presentations and historical displays throughout the year.
Dr. Duane Dunn, SCCC/ATS president, gave an update of the 2013 budget. Additional costs will include utility costs, travel, postage and printing.
He also reported that Seaboard Farms is now offering 10-15 $1,000 annual scholarships for students enrolled in the Area Technical School programs.
Cynthia Rapp, dean of instruction, introduced new employees at the Colvin Adult Learning Center, including Linda Frederickson, assistant director, and Andrea Rangel, instructor.
In other action, the board
1. Approved the purchase of wiring conduit and junction boxes for the Corrosion Pipeline Lab from Stanion Wholesale Electric of Liberal in the amount of $6,071.36;
2. Approved the purchase of anodes and electrode cells for the corrosion pipeline lab in the amount of $11,409.71 from Farwest Corrosion Control Co. of Tulsa, Okla.;
3. Approved the purchase of equipment to establish network connectivity, install wireless access points and indoor and outdoor cameras and analog phone connections for Hale Court from Alexander Open Systems of Wichita in the amount of $32,827.23; and
4. Approved a bid from B&B Electric of Liberal in the amount of $15,162 for electrical work in the new math lab in the library, and $17,914 from Southwest Glass & Door of Liberal for the wall and doors for the lab. Funds for this project are provided through the Department of Education STEM grant.
Upcoming events include the student art exhibit this week; “Telolith” reception, 12:30-2 Friday; Agriculture banquet, 7 p.m., Friday; Nursing Capping and Pinning, 7:30 p.m., Friday; Commencement, 10 a.m., and GED graduation at 3:00 p.m. Saturday,
All Saints Day is Thursday, May 17 for students who will be new to the college in the fall.
The board will meet in a planning retreat from 5:30- 9 p.m., Monday, June 4. The next board meeting is 7:30 p.m., Monday, June 25