NCMC Trustees discuss major improvements and budget approvals

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North Central Missouri College Athletic Director Nathan Gamet shared ideas with the NCMC Board of Trustees on May 28 on improvements for the college’s athletics and the Ketcham Community Center.

The ideas included renovating the old Derry practice facility to create storage and allow the golf teams to practice inside.

Another idea was replacing the scoreboard in the Ketcham Center and changing out the shot clocks. Gamet reported the scoreboard has panels, and the panels are starting to fail. He explained technology has upgraded, and the scoreboard and shot clocks could be combined into one package.

Gamet also suggested new lockers for the basketball teams, noting the current lockers have been around for as long as he has been at NCMC and show wear and tear.

Gamet reported the total cost for the whole project is estimated to be $305,000. He hopes the NCMC Foundation will help with the cost.

NCMC Resource Center Coordinator Shellee Castaneda reported on the Savannah Campus Resource Center. She said the resource center is developing a good relationship with the dual credit counselor at Savannah High School. She has attended Orientation, Advising, and Registration events at Savannah and new student orientations for the Nursing and Health Sciences programs.

Castaneda reported the resource center is providing instruction for History, English, and Radiologic Technology. Six pro tutors help with Surgical Technology, Math, Physics, English, History, and Pharmacology.

Chief Information Officer Jennifer Triplett reported Information Technology Services advanced on an email security project. The project involves looking for bad indicators and warnings. Other projects making progress include electronic forms, Turn It In for plagiarism detection, Ellucian, and PowerFAIDS. Security certificates have also been rotated.

Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Tristan Londré reported the summer intercession will end in a few days, and the summer semester starts June 3. Upward Bound students are moving into dorms.

Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Kristen Alley reported major federal guidelines were released, and colleges must comply by August 1. She noted Title IX had significant updates, including one involving pregnant students.

Alley said five OAR dates are full, and two are close to being full. More dates may be added.

There were 502 degrees and certificates awarded to 449 individual students at graduation on May 4. Alley said the college is looking at alternatives due to the possibility of overcrowding at the ceremonies.

NCMC President Dr. Lenny Klaver said that possibly making alternate plans for graduation in the future because more students graduating is a “good thing.”

He reported on a BJC Health meeting in Kansas City, mentioning an opportunity to meet with the BJC chief executive officer about NCMC’s Nursing and Allied Health program success. He noted that NCMC graduates more than 200 nurses each year. The college is looking into another certificate for healthcare workers to staff hospitals. Klaver commented that BJC and Saint Luke’s are strong, and their merger will make them stronger.

He attended the Missouri Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development Commissions Advisory Council meeting in Jefferson City last week. The meeting reviewed the state legislative session and actions. Klaver reported a bill involving a 60-hour credit transfer instead of 42 core was not sent to the governor, but he is hopeful for next year.

The Missouri Community College Association Presidents and Chancellors meeting in Kansas City also discussed the state legislative session. Klaver reported that 28 bills were passed, a record low. He noted there was a lot of infighting in the State Senate and in general, including the two longest filibusters in state history, one by Republicans and the other by Democrats. However, he believes area legislators are good and listen to NCMC.

The legislature passed a budget increase of three percent for higher education. Klaver expects Governor Mike Parson to approve the increase since it was originally the governor’s idea. MoExcels projects were also funded.

Klaver reported NCMC had processed 135 more Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) applications this year than last year, despite many problems with the rollout of FAFSA nationwide.

Klaver congratulated the spring sports teams, noting there were winning teams in every sport at the college this year. He commented that the players perform well on the field and in the classroom, represent NCMC well, and exhibit good behavior and competitiveness. Klaver also praised the coaches.

Green Hills Head Start Director Sue Ewigman reported Head Start was required to have at least a 2.35% cost of living adjustment increase and was able to provide a 3% increase.

Head Start Director Janet Gott reported infant/toddler programs have started in Unionville and Chillicothe. Early Head Start began on May 22.

The North Central Missouri College Board of Trustees approved a personal days proposal on May 28. The faculty proposed eliminating the Flex Day Policy and adding two additional personal days, for a total of four, to the annual full-time employees’ benefit of personal time off. Personal days must be used by June 30 of the NCMC fiscal year and cannot be carried over. The change applies to all full-time employees.

NCMC President Dr. Lenny Klaver reported the personal day proposal had been vetted and supported by Shared Governance. He said he was neutral on the matter.

The board approved a request from Information Technology Services to renew Ellucian software and support fees. Software and support for September 1, 2024, through August 31, 2025, will cost $75,478. The Computer Operations Budget will fund the purchase.

Chief Information Officer Jennifer Triplett reported that Ellucian provides NCMC with the PowerCampus student information system and the PowerFAIDS financial aid system. Ellucian is the sole source provider for the software and services.

The board approved another IT Services request to purchase end-user computing devices to replace aging equipment. The total cost of the replacement equipment would be $52,890.12 from CDWG. CDWG provided price quotes with Sourcewell consortium pricing. The purchase will be made with the IT Services Operating Budgets.

The board approved NCMC Talent Search Director Dr. Cindy Wells’s recommendation for the college to purchase the New Orleans College/Cultural Experience Trip from Gerber Tours for NCMC Talent Search students. The trip will cost $39,836, including 20 students with four per room at $35,900 and two chaperones with two per room at $3,936. The costs are all-inclusive, covering airfare, bus and transportation while in New Orleans, meals, a hotel, and tickets to all events.

Information provided by Wells noted sealed bids were not required since this is a service. However, NCMC contacted four travel groups, and Gerber was the only one that responded promptly. One group did not respond, and the other two did not present an itinerary or a cost estimate.

Wells added that Talent Search does not usually allow for trips and experiences like this. However, empty staff positions created a carryover amount, and grant requirements state the amount should be used.

The board approved a request from NCMC Dean of Instruction Dr. Mitch Holder for a $3,500 per semester fee for Students Accessing Individualized Learning (SAIL) program students. Information Holder provided said the fee is needed to offset costs involving personnel, equipment, and services provided by the program. The amount will be in addition to other costs of attendance incurred by a student, including tuition.

NCMC Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Tristan Londré said the cost is in line with other programs like SAIL and did not think it would affect enrollment. He believes NCMC will have full cohorts and may have to turn away students. Londré explained SAIL is a new program for neurodivergent students and will involve activities throughout the day.

The board approved resignations, including Nursing Instructor Lisa Kauten, Savannah Maintenance/Custodian Technician Jeffrey Grider, and Residence Life Coordinator and Assistant Softball Coach Kenlee Frank. Kauten’s resignation was effective May 4, Grider’s on May 23, and Frank’s will be effective May 30.

Hirings were approved, including Teddy Leffler of Trenton as a Lead Custodian at the Main Campus in Trenton, starting July 1. Madison Stillwell of Browning was hired as a business instructor, beginning August 14. Tara Hoffman of Trenton was hired as the SAIL Program Director, starting July 1. Board President Chris Hoffman abstained from the vote involving Tara Hoffman. Joseph Stull of Kirksville was hired as an adjunct instructor, beginning this fall. Craig Foster of Bethany was hired as a clinical adjunct instructor at the current clinical rate, starting this summer.

The board approved the transfer of Jenny Lewis of Trenton from Head Start Enrollment Specialist to Head Start Director of Centers and Administration at the Trenton Head Start Central Office, starting July 1.

The board approved Green Hills Head Start personnel items, including transfers for Lyndsey Jennings from Caldwell County Home Visitor to Harrison/Mercer County Home Visitor, Kelsey King from Harrison/Mercer County Home Visitor to Putnam County Home Visitor, and Darlene Stottlemyre from Putnam County Home Visitor to Unionville Head Start Center Director. The transfers were effective May 21.

Trenton Head Start Center Part-Time Teacher Kelsie Lowe’s resignation was approved, effective May 21.

Linn County Home Visitor Marie Jobson’s retirement was approved, effective June 28.

The end of employment was approved for Bethany Teacher Jennifer Parsons, effective April 17.

The board approved changing the date for its next regular meeting to June 18 at 5:30 p.m. in the Frey Administrative Center. The change was made because several trustees plan to attend the Missouri Community College Association Trustees and Executives Conference from June 25 through 27. NCMC Chief of Staff/Board Clerk Kristi Harris noted there would not have been a quorum if the meeting had stayed on its usual date.

The board entered into an executive session for employees, legal action, and real estate.

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