The Seward County Community College Board of Trustees met Monday, Oct. 1, and heard reports from the Student Government Association and a number of programs across campus, including the participation in a new grant program.
Courtney Sander, Student Government Association president, informed the board about the upcoming goals of the Student Government Association. The officers and members of SGA have a philosophy of open minds and open doors and they want to increase SGA’s visibility on campus and be available to all students at all times. Already this year the college has started an education club and plans are under way to add an International Student Club.
Dr. Steve Cauble, trustee, reported on a recent Association of Community College Trustees Leadership Congress. He praised Seward County Community College and the community for being a step ahead of the rest of the world when it comes to dealing with diversity. Cauble also emphasized the need for effective crisis communication. He reported that when major disasters have occurred in college communities, such as New Orleans, communication has fallen apart with personnel on campus.
Cauble also reported that Pam Perkins, SCCC administrative assistant to the president became the new president of the Professional Board Staff Network of ACCT.
Dr. Duane Dunn, SCCC president, also reported from the meeting that over 50 percent of students attending institutes of higher learning in the United States are attending community colleges. This is a change from 10 years ago.
As part of the regular review of instructional area within the college, the board approved the Social Sciences, Behavioral Sciences and Education Program Review with the next formal review scheduled for five years.
Among the strengths of these programs are the faculty, the strong relationships between the part-time and full-time faculty and the use of the latest technology in classrooms. However, with several potential retirements coming in 2008 and 2009, the college will be looking for new personnel in, history, government and philosophy. In addition, two classrooms need to be retrofitted with the latest technological equipment to bring them up-to-date with the other classrooms in the Humanities Division.
Cynthia Rapp, dean of instruction, also told the board that there has been great progress in developing core course outcomes and competencies in psychology, sociology and history among the community colleges and universities in Kansas. In addition, there has been increased communication between universities and four-year colleges and community colleges in terms of transfer issues and expectations of the elementary and secondary education programs. This has been accelerated through the Equity and Access Grant through Kansas State and the educational forums at Fort Hays State University.
The newest club on campus is the Students Promoting Education Club and Lee Courtney, co-advisor, indicated one of the main purposes of this club is to increase recruitment and retention of SCCC students who are interested in careers in education. In addition, the college is developing an education page on the SCCC website to help students understand the education program and financial aid issues. It will have links to transfer institutions and other information important to the student pursuing a career in education.
As part of the program review process, the board also approved reports on the Math and Health, Physical Education and Recreation departments. Rapp presented an update of both of these programs to the board.
The board also reviewed the final report that has been submitted to the Higher Learning Commission as part of the college’s ongoing Academic Quality Improvement Program. This report focuses on retention of SCCC students.
SCCC’s Colvin Adult Learning Center will participate in a $500,000 grant to the Kansas Board of Regents, along with six other community colleges, called Project Next Step. The funds will be used to enhance the adult secondary education curriculum by including higher level language arts and mathematics courses and to identify support services to facilitate a student’s transition into postsecondary education.
SCCC will host the deans and directors of continuing education across campus Thursday and Friday. Fall break is Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 8-9. Campus is closed on Monday, Oct. 8 with administrative offices open Tuesday. Trick or treat street for community children will be Wednesday, Oct. 31.
The next board meeting will be Monday, Nov. 5.