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SCCC sets tuition, dorm rates for 2016-17

KSCB News - March 28, 2016 12:41 pm

At its regular March meeting, the Seward County Community College Board of Trustees addressed big questions — like the college’s official name — as well as routine business.

Employee issues claimed a fair share of attention, with discussion of the college’s organization chart and the usual personnel report. The board accepted the retirement of Process Technology Program Specialist Harold Fick and the resignation of Health Information Technology Instructor Sherry Farrell.

New employees joining the SCCC team include Charity Horinek, Associate Director of Institutional Advancement (now a full-time position), Natalya Lowther, Enterprise Budget Manager for the sustainable agriculture program, and Sue Sprenkle, Journalism instructor.

Applications are currently being accepted for several positions, including adjunct instructors in the humanities division, assistant volleyball coach, Director of Counseling, Career Services and Advising, full-time instructors for diesel, developmental English, respiratory therapy, HVAC and welding and truck driving, a business consultant for the Kansas Small Business Development office in Dodge City, and a custodian position.

Meanwhile, the college’s Role Clarity team has begun a “big-picture” evaluation of the college’s employee and organizational structure, said SCCC President, Dr. Ken Trzaska.

“Our goal is to look at our entire organization structure and the roles embedded in that. We want to make sure we have the right people in the right positions, empowered to do their best work,” he said.

Trzaska brought the board the first of several planned proposals, renaming three dean positions as vice presidents.

“This has been discussed several times as we look at staying in line with our peer colleges,” he said. “Accordingly, our Dean of Finance and Operations, Dennis Sander, would now be the Vice President of Finance and Operations. Dean of Student Services Celeste Donovan would be the Vice President of Student Services. And Dean of Academic Affairs, Dr. Todd Carter, would be the Vice President of Academic Affairs.”

The Board voted unanimously to approve the new position titles, which, Trzaska noted, do not change the actual duties or salaries of the three administrators.

“If that puts us more in line with what the world of education is doing, that’s OK with me,” commented trustee Marvin Chance, who officiated the meeting in the absence of chair Ron Oliver. “As long as it doesn’t have a pay increase with it.”
In other business, the board set housing and tuition rates for the next fiscal year. Once again, SCCC positioned itself as a “best value,” the most economically priced higher learning institution in the region.

The price of student housing with cafeteria meals will increase 3 percent, a total of $60 per semester. The price is based on increases in per unit food costs and operating expenses. Total cost for a shared room in the Student Living Center/Mansion dorms, with the 19-meal-per-week plan, will be $2,400 per semester, and $2,300 for Hale Court housing. Students who wish to reserve single rooms pay $500 more per semester, contingent on room availability.

Tuition, too, will see a slight price increase. Administration proposed a $4 increase per credit hour, and a $1 per hour fee increase.

“The fee increase offsets the increasing use of Internet bandwidth for users with mobile devices,” said Dennis Sander, Vice President of Finance and Operations. “Usage of our Internet pipeline has exploded.”

Total cost of a credit hour now sits at $89 per hour for Seward County residents.

Other business at the meeting included the second reading of Policy 421, which addresses student complaint procedures, official designation of Trzaska as Clerk of the Board of Trustees, and bids and quotes. The board approved the purchase of a semi-truck-load of supplies for the STEM sustainable agriculture program, including components to build two large coolers for crop storage.

“These two items were not included in our original grant request, but a federal program officer gave approval, if the board of trustees approves,” said STEM coordinator Dr. Suzanne Campbell. “Our agriculture instructor, David Coltrain, put in a lot of time and research to find out what we need, and how to build it. It’s not something you can buy off the shelf.”

The need for such coolers is unique to the production of specialty crops, Coltrain told the board.

“A farmer can’t grow tomatoes and roll up to the elevator and dump them,” he said. “The fruit and vegetable specialist at K-State made the comment that having these coolers is more important than the tractor.”

Coltrain said the addition of coolers will enable the agriculture team to produce and save significant crops.

“With one of these, we can produce and freeze enough sweet corn for all winter long, or pick and hydro-cool lettuce and salad greens, that can last for months,” he said. “It’s one of those hoped-for things that makes the difference between success and failure.”
The board approved the purchase.
In reports from the deans/newly-named Vice Presidents, the board heard updates about the upcoming college Phonathon, naming of Presidential Scholarship awards at area schools, and legislative matters under discussion in Topeka.

The next Board of Trustees meeting will be at 7:30 p.m. on April 4, in the boardroom at the Hobble Academic Building on campus.

 

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