Auditor: College fared well amid COVID-19 impact      

Joe Denoyer - April 14, 2021 11:06 am

by Rachel Coleman

LIBERAL, Kan.  — At their usual monthly meeting April 5, Seward County Community College trustees reviewed the independent annual audit as presented by CPA Neil Phillips of Jarrod, Gilmore, and Phillips. The audit noted that SCCC “fared well for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2020 considering the impact COVID-19 had on the institution.” Phillips led the board through a thorough review of the audit’s details, including a few areas where corrective actions were recommended to better document enrollment and financial aid processes. Updated training processes for new personnel and improved software were implemented in August 2020 to address these concerns.

Following a short presentation about expansion of marketing efforts to recruit students from Colorado and other western states, the Board authorized President Brad Bennett to enter into an agreement with 9News to develop and implement a marketing campaign in the amount of $50,000, subject to available and approved budget. The proposed initiative is divided into the two agreements for television and digital advertising, presented at $25,000 each.

The Board voted unanimously to purchase two new vehicles for the college fleet:  a 2020 Ford Transit 10-Passenger Van for $35,935, and a 2021 Ford Escape $22,780, both from Foss Motor Company of Liberal.  Both vehicle prices were the low bid.

In routine business, the board approved the personnel report, updated summer hours to begin May 21, and heard reports about employee benefits and PEA negotiations.

• Approved the annual reviews for Student Services Policies regarding Student Complaints, Student Records in Accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA Policy), Student Identification Numbers, Student Insurance Coverage, Missing Student Notification, and  Tuberculosis Prevention, all of which remain unchanged.

• Approve updates to Student Services Policies regarding Student Travel, Student Complaint and Grievance Procedure, and Background Check for Employees and Students Involved in Internships and Clinical Experiences, as presented.

• Saints Athletic Director Dan Artamenko reported that the SCCC  Volleyball team won the conference title for the fifth year in a row, the longest streak in team history, and posted one of the better win/loss percentage (top 8 in team history). Basketball teams completed their regular season were ready to begin playoffs. Baseball and Softball are in the middle of their conference schedule. Tennis has received national recognition for their play so far, with the men ranked #3 in the country and the women #6.

• Chief Development Officer Kyle Woodrow reported that his office has decided to fill its current vacancy with a return to the job description and title, “Associate Director of Annual Giving and Alumni Engagement.” Interviews are underway. The annual meeting of the SCCC Foundation Annual Meeting included election of new officers as follows: Stephanie Ormiston – PresidentDuane Bozarth – Vice PresidentAl Shank – TreasurerKyle Woodrow – Secretary, and  Sherelle Shuck – Assistant Treasurer/Secretary. Online Auction plans still on track for May 15, 2021.

• Chief Information Officer Louie Lemert submitted his quarterly compliance report, noting that the SCCC Website’s ADA Compliance shows an average accessibility score of 83 percent, where the industry benchmark is 74.9 percent. In regard to the FFIEC Cyber Security Assessment to determine meeting the mandatory statutory requirements of the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act, the college is working to improve its current score of only 21 percent of the standards.

• Vice President of Student Services Celeste Donovan reported that the SCCC Financial Aid Office began awarding more CARES Act monies the third week of March. Selection of  Teacher of the Year and Graduate of the Year for year 2020/2021 are underway. “We are also in the process of collecting our end of the year Co-Curricular Student Outcomes, one for the housing students and one for the students graduating,” she noted. Both surveys provide insight on what SCCC does well and what students think could be improved.

• As graduation approaches, Donovan said SCCC will offer multiple ceremonies this year. Representatives from the college also plan to attend end-of-year award ceremonies at at least 16 regional high schools.

• Vice President of Academic Affairs Luke Dowell brought information about assessments for students and the college as a whole. Graduate Assessment Day for sophomores is set for April 15, and faculty and some staff will participate in an assessment workshop in the afternoon. The annual institutional update for the Higher Learning Commission was completed and submitted on time. This update includes information about student enrollment, our financial standing, staff head count, and other institutional information. Dowell thanked Dennis Sander, Teresa Wehmeier, President Bennett for completing this.

• Vice President of Finance and Operations Dennis Sander reported that COVID funds amounting to $250,000 have been expended and reported to KBOR. Facilities recently repaired a water main leak, and is preparing to start the irrigation well and mowing routines. The Saints Bookstore will offer custom bundles for Admin Professionals Day for persons or businesses who are wanting to purchase a gift for their administrative professional. At the Kansas Small Business Development Center, two business have been started in the first quarter of 2021,  110 clients were served, 15 events were held in Southwest Kansas, and a total capital infusion of $857,900 was measured.

• President Bennett noted that the Council of Presidents continues to meet weekly, with conversation focused on COVID relief funds and legislative issues. A group met on March 30 to brainstorm ideas for these funds. “These conversations are really helpful when determining the best way to strategically utilize these funds in the best interest of our institution,” he noted. The Board of Trustees retreat is planned for April 26, with dinner scheduled for 6 p.m. I am looking forward to spending the evening planning for our future,” he said.


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