Board Meeting Minutes
Highlights from the Cowley College Board of Trustees Meetings
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Academic Year 2016-2017
Board of Trustees' Meetings
July 17, 2017
The Cowley College Board of Trustees authorized Chair Bob Juden to sign the lease of real property agreement between Cowley College and USD 263 during Monday night’s meeting of the Board held at the Mulvane Bloomenshine facility. The agreement allows the college to lease the Mulvane Bloomenshine property, with the option to purchase the property at the conclusion of the three-year lease term.
Giving Cowley College an opportunity to communicate with students in a way they never have before, the Cowley Mobile App (CowleyGO) will launch in the Apple and Google play store on July 1. The College’s Board of Trustees learned this and more during Monday night’s monthly meeting held in the McAtee Dining Center. Cowley is working with Modolabs to enable college students to easily create compelling, rich mobile websites and other data repositories which transform into a primary source of communication for students.
Representatives from Gordon and Associates Architects provided Cowley College's Board of Trustees with a phase 1 overview of the Sumner County Campus at Wellington Construction during Monday night's meeting of the Board.
Upon the recommendation of Cowley College’s Academic Affairs team, Cowley College’s Board of Trustees approved the idea to present an honorary degree at this year’s Commencement exercises to Cowley College sophomore Garrett Misora, who was tragically killed in a car accident in November, 2016. The decision was made at Monday night’s Board meeting held in the McAtee Dining Center.
Misora was an exceptional student that was involved in the Cowley Pep Band and Academic Excellence Challenge team. Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle said Misora represented the College’s four core values and praised the work done by vice president of academic affairs Dr. Harold Arnett in making this honorary degree a possibility.
Dr. Arnett and his team will bring a list of qualifications to the Board to consider for future honorary degrees.
Also during the meeting, Dr. Rittle presented Sid Regnier with a plaque for his years of service to the college. Regnier spent 26 years employed at the college as the vice president of business services before retiring in 2000. He also spent the past two years as a member of the college’s Board of Trustees prior to resigning due to health issues at the March meeting of the Board of Trustees.
“Thank you to all of the students and employees of the college that have had me in their thoughts and prayers,” Regnier said. “I have enjoyed my time here at the college as a student, employee, teacher, and member of the Board.”
Board Chair Bob Juden said Regnier was his supervisor when he first began working at the college.
“You will find nobody more dedicated to our college than Sid,” Chair Juden said. “I have learned so much from him personally and applaud him and thank him for his service.”
Sid Regnier has been a vital part of the Cowley College campus for the better part of four decades. He spent 26 years of service to the college as the vice president of business services before retiring in 2000. He has spent the past two years as a member of the college’s Board of Trustees and has strived to do his best to provide educational opportunities to the students of Cowley College. Due to health issues, Regnier submitted a letter of resignation effective immediately during Monday night’s meeting of the Board of Trustees.
“To all the employees of the college, I will always believe in you and wish you success as you strive to continue to brand Cowley College the best institution it has always been,” Regnier said.
In recognition of all that Regnier has done for the college, the Cowley College bookstore was named in his honor during the fall of 2000.
Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle thanked Mr. Regnier on behalf of the faculty, staff, students, and community for his years of service to the college, while Board Chair Bob Juden thanked Mr. Regnier for not only what he has done for the college but also in aiding himself.
Past chairman Dennis K. Shurtz echoed those sentiments.
“The Board of Trustees and the community applaud Mr. Regnier for his years of service as an administrator and board member for the college,” Shurtz said.
During Monday night’s meeting of the Cowley College Board of Trustees, the Board approved the authorization for Chairman Bob Juden to sign the extension to the Interlocal Cooperation Agreement providing for the creation and operation of the Cowley County Economic Development Agency. The agreement has been extended for three years, expiring on December 31, 2019.
Deb Firebaugh, administrative assistant for Cowley First-Cowley County Economic Development, appreciates the college’s willingness to extend the interlocal agreement with Cowley First.
“Throughout our partnership these past 13 years, Cowley College has always been an active participant no matter the topic, issue or project Cowley First is working on,” Firebaugh said. “We are excited to see what we can continue to accomplish together as an economic development partnership.”
The Board also approved the authorization for Chair Juden to sign the Permanent Utility Easement, granting the City of Arkansas City access to the Cowley College baseball field parking lot, for the purpose of constructing, reconstructing, repairing, improving, and maintaining the public water line, which lies beneath.
Chair Juden was also granted authorization to execute the Option to Purchase Real Property Agreement between Cowley College and the Short Land Co., LLC and the Short Family, giving Cowley College the option to purchase up to 10 additional acres of land, adjacent to the location of the future campus site in Wellington, KS, sometime during the next 10 years.
With the first day of spring classes underway at Cowley College, the school informed the Board of an increase in full-time students from this time a year ago. The information was shared during the monthly Board meeting held Tuesday, January 17 in the McAtee Dining Center.
Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle said the College is up 166 FTE from a year ago.
“It took all hands on deck to accomplish this and I thank everyone for their efforts,” Dr. Rittle said.
Dr. Rittle also informed the Board that the College was recently awarded a pair of grants totaling $91,998. Funding will set up the computer lab needed for teaching CNC programming and related skills at the new Wellington Campus. The Grant money will also be used to purchase new computers to outfit a drastically updated graphic design lab.
“It took work from all around the College to help us achieve this wonderful success,” Dr. Rittle said.
Following a Christmas dinner sponsored by Great Western Dining Monday night in the McAtee Dining Center, Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle provided the school’s Board of Trustees with a College update during the annual monthly meeting.
Dr. Rittle informed the Board that on Sunday, December 11 the Beta Phi Upsilon chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa honor society hosted its chartering and first induction ceremony at Cowley’s Mulvane Center. The event was a success and featured a standing room only crowd of family and friends. Dr. Rittle praised the work done by chapter advisors Chad and Tiffany Killblane as well as Mulvane Center administrative assistant Julia Jarboe.
Dr. Rittle also discussed the recent KACCT meeting he and Board member Jill Long attended in Parsons, KS. He said the two biggest take aways from the meeting were the continued discussion of a merger between Wichita State University and Wichita Area Technical College, and the ongoing discussion to allow guns on campus.
Dr. Kori Gregg, Cowley College vice president of institutional advancement, has been accompanying Dr. Rittle to visit Sumner County businesses that are interested in helping support the new campus in Wellington. They recently visited Tect Aerospace, GKN Aerospace, Triumph Accessory Services, and KanOkla.
The Cowley College Board of Trustees convened for its first board meeting since the election on Monday, November 21, 2016, and approved a property/naming agreement for the Sumner County campus after announcing a gift of land in excess of $1 million dollars by the Short family of Oxford.
Marjorie Short, the wife of the late Bill Short, is the owner of Short Land Company, LLC, and the donor of 18 acres of property just east of Walmart along Highway 160. In honor of the donation, the family received naming rights and announced the naming of the first building to be the Short General Education Center.
“Two weeks ago, Sumner County voters gave us their approval to move forward with a Cowley College campus in this community,” said Dr. Rittle at the Sumner County Economic Development office where the board approved the property agreement. “Now, because of the generosity of Marjorie Short and her family, we’ve got a location in east Wellington and are able to begin our construction plan so we can open the Short General Education Center in the fall of 2018.”
The Cowley College Board of Trustees approved the decision to give Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle and athletic director Shane Larson the authority to move forward with adding wrestling as a College athletic program in the fall of 2017. The announcement was made during the monthly Board meeting held Monday, October 17 in the McAtee Dining Center.
The Board also made the recommendation to retain former Arkansas City High School wrestling Coach Wayne Jackson as a consultant to Larson if Coach Jackson is willing. Jackson led the Bulldog program from 1979 to 2000 and won a record 13 Kansas State Team championships during his tenure. The team’s accomplishments included the success of 150 individual state placers and an incredible 57 individual state champions. Coach Jackson has remained involved with Ark City wrestling since stepping down in 2000.
During Monday’s meeting, Larson provided the Board with a feasibility study that showed the benefits of adding a new athletic program at the College. Four sports were taken into consideration in the study. The study showed there is a large recruiting base in the region to support the addition of a wrestling program at Cowley College. The NJCAA allows 18 scholarships for wrestling, and most intercollegiate programs carry rosters of 30-35 athletes.
The study also showed the popularity of wrestling in the Cowley County region could lead to more participation in the Tiger Booster Club and provide an opportunity for increased enrollment.
Along with the study, Larson provided the Board with printed emails and letters from individuals supporting the startup of a wrestling program at Cowley College.
Larson said the College will look to hire a head coach to lead the wrestling program in January or February, 2017. This will allow the coach time to assemble a roster and schedule matches.
Cowley College’s Board of Trustees were provided with an update on the recent KACCT/COP quarterly meeting attended by President Dr. Dennis C. Rittle during the monthly Board meeting held Monday, September 19 in the McAtee Dining Center.
Dr. Rittle reported that there were two areas of focus at the KACCT meeting held September 9-10 at Seward County Community College. One being, that the KACCT requests all community colleges to send a consistent message when speaking with legislators about the incredible return on investment community colleges provide to their communities and the State of Kansas.
The second theme Dr. Rittle noted is the Kansas Board of Regents’ request for all community colleges to increase their student credential attainment. Currently, the national average is 10 semesters of decreasing enrollment. Add that to the decrease in the overall Kansas population and the decrease in state funding, and colleges face some significant challenges. However, in light of those challenges, Cowley is one of the top student credential attainment colleges in the State of Kansas per headcount and is willing to take the challenge of increasing student credential attainment because of the tremendous value to students, industries, and communities.
Jill Long of Winfield, KS was appointed to serve on the Cowley College Board of Trustees during the monthly Board meeting held Monday, August 8 in the McAtee Dining Center.
David Andreas, Legal Counsel, administered the Oath of Office. Along with Long’s installation she was appointed to serve as a voting delegate to the Kansas Association of Community College Trustees (KACCT), and serve as one of three Trustees on the Academic Sub-Committee as recommended by the nominating committee consisting of Trustee Dennis K. Shurtz and Board Chair Bob Juden.
Also, during the meeting, Cowley College’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved the 2016-2017 operating budget for the College. The 2016-2017 budget has a projected mill levy of 18.990.
Revenues are based on in-state enrollments, a state operating grant, and an estimated county valuation of 253,892,051. Expenditures are based on anticipated enrollments at each campus and objectives as set forth by the Board of Trustees and the Administrative Team.
A Retreat of the Board of Trustees of Cowley County Community College and Area Vocational-Technical School was called to order on August 6, 2016, at 8:00am, in the Board of Trustee Conference Room, McAtee Dining Center on the CCCC campus, 206 South Fourth Street, Arkansas City, Kansas.
A Special Meeting of the Board of Trustees of Cowley County Community College and Area Vocational-Technical School was called to order on July 25, 2016, at 3:00 pm, in the Board of Trustee Conference Room, McAtee Dining Center on the CCCC campus, 206 South Fourth Street, Arkansas City, Kansas.
A meeting of the Board of Trustees of Cowley County Community College and Area Vocational-Technical School was called to order on July 18, 2016, at 6:00 pm, in the Board of Trustee Conference Room, McAtee Dining Center on the CCCC campus, 206 South Fourth Street, Arkansas City, Kansas.
Academic Year 2015-2016
Board of Trustees' Meetings
During Monday night’s meeting of Cowley College’s Board of Trustees, Jill Long of Winfield, KS was selected through a vote to fill the empty Board seat vacated by Jim Ramirez, who spent nearly five years as a member of the Board of Trustees before resigning in May. Long’s term will expire in January 2020.
Long was selected among a pool of four candidates. Others running for the vacant seat were, Jeremy Biddle of Winfield, and Bonnie Niles and Forrest Smith of Arkansas City.
“Every one of them were super,” Board member Bob Juden said.
The board also approved the nominations for Board of Trustees’ officers for 2016-2017: Bob Juden, Chairman; JoLynn Foster, Vice-Chairman; Dennis Shurtz, Past Chairman Who Shall Serve as an Advisor to the Chairman of the Board; Jill Long, Voting Delegate to the Kansas Association of Community Colleges Trustees (KACCT); Brian Sanderholm, Alternate Delegate to Kansas Association of Community College Trustees (KACCT); Brian Sanderholm, Voting Delegate to the Association of Community Colleges Trustees (ACCT); Dennis Shurtz, Alternate Delegate to the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT); JoLynn Foster, Trustee Representative for Professional Negotiations; Sid Regnier, Trustee Representative to Receive Open Bids; Ned Graham, Trustee Representative to the Cowley College Foundation Association; Ned Graham, Trustee Representative to the Tiger Booster Club; Dennis Shurtz, Ned Graham, and JoLynn Foster, Three Trustees to serve on the Finance Sub-Committee; Bob Juden, Brian Sanderholm, and Jill Long, Three Trustees to serve on the Academic Sub-Committee.
Board appointments include Tiffany Vollmer as Clerk of the Board, Dr. Gloria Walker as Treasurer of the Board, and David Andreas as Attorney for the Board.
The Board designated RCB Bank, Union State Bank, CornerBank, Sunflower Bank/Wichita, and Carson Bank/Mulvane as official depositories, and utilize all qualified institutions in the County for the investment of idle funds.
The Board also designated the Cowley CourierTraveler for publication of official notices, and kept the Board meeting time at 6 p.m. on the third Monday of every month with four alternate dates of August 8, December 12, January 17, and March 13.
During an update from president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle, Cowley College’s Board of Trustees heard of the institution’s enrollment by credit hours for the 2015-16 academic year. Dr. Rittle shared that the college had budgeted for a total enrollment of 66,000 credit hours, and that end-of-year figures exceeded 70,000 credit hours. This represents a six percent increase over what was budgeted.
Dr. Rittle praised the work of administrators, faculty and staff during the past year, stating he is “proud of what teamwork can do.”
Along with several other college administrators, Dr. Rittle expressed excitement that Cowley College was recently selected as the only college in Kansas and Oklahoma to participate in a three-year program allowing students taking college-credit courses to access Federal Pell Grants as early as high school. Discussion centered on student eligibility and the opportunity for this program to radically increase student access. Dr. Rittle described this as a “game changer” for the college.
Dennis K. Shurtz, chairman of the board, initiated discussion regarding the expansion of the Senior Gold Card program, which currently allows Cowley County citizens 65 years and older to attend Cowley College activities free of charge. The Board approved extending the program to citizens of Sumner, Chautauqua and Sedgwick counties. The minimum age will be lowered to 60 years old.
Dr. Rittle also informed the Board of the college’s efforts to expand its physical footprint in Sumner County, citing that college administration is exploring additional opportunities for revenue sources to support operations.
Cowley College’s Board of Trustees heard the good news about the school’s recent selection for the High School: Pell ‘Dual Enrollment’ Program during the monthly Board meeting held Monday, May 16 in the McAtee Dining Center.
During Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle’s College update, he informed the Board that the school was recently selected one of only 44 postsecondary institutions across 23 states, and the only college in Kansas and Oklahoma invited to participate ina pilot program that – for the first time – allows students taking college-credit courses to access Federal Pell Grants as early as high school.
Cowley College Board Chair Dennis K. Shurtz recognized Ben Schears, vice president for institutional advancement, as Schears was attending his final Board meeting prior to becoming president at Northwest Kansas Technical College.
In other matters:
- Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented with general operating funds of $464,225.59; financial aid funds of $170,289.27; and Foundation funds of $13,726.39.
- The Board acknowledged receipt of resignation by Trustee Jim Ramirez, effective May 3. 2016.
- Approved the student fee for the 2016-2017 academic year be set at $34 per credit hour.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board that the NC-SARA enrollment data was successfully submitted and re-approved to maintain the school’s State Authorization agreements for Distance Learning and authorizes Cowley to continue teaching online courses in all 50 states. Dr. Arnett also mentioned the work done by Stephani Johns-Hines and Brooke Istas in developing a grant proposal for integrating Algebra instruction with technical courses. The grant was approved in the amount of $39,000. Also, the Fire Science and Milling programs have been officially approved and the first student has enrolled in the Fire Science course.
With Cowley College’s dorms near capacity, the school’s Board of Trustees received a PowerPoint presentation on an additional student housing concept during the monthly Board meeting held Monday, April 18 in the McAtee Dining Center.
Steven J. Martens, CPM, CCIM/SIOR of the Martens Companies was joined by Craig Nelson of Conco Construction, and Merrill Gordon of Gordon & Associates Architecture to answer questions and address student housing needs with a student housing proposal.
Dr. Rittle mentioned Cowley College’s two commencement ceremonies that will be held Saturday, May 7 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., and praised the work done by the Board members that served on sub-committees reviewing college policies.
In other matters:
- Approved a Board of Trustees retreat be conducted on Saturday, Aug. 6 in the President’s Private Dining Room. The retreat will begin at 8 a.m. and conclude at 11:30 a.m.
- Stephani Johns-Hines, associate vice president of business and industry advancement, informed the Board that the Fire Science and Milling AAS program proposals have passed the Technical Education Authority sub-committee, full committee and BAASC (Board Academic Affairs Standing Committee) with unanimous approval at each step. The final step is approval by the Kansas Board of Regents.
- Bryan McChesney, systems administrator, said work continues on configuring and implementing the new Student Information System. Also, all new underground fiber has been installed, tested, certified and labeled.
- Rama Peroo, director of institutional communications and public relations, provided a Foundation update. The Pre-Campaign Survey is coming along very well. Initial feedback from the survey will be coming back to the college in late April. Preparation for the Great Cowley Duck Dash on Saturday, May 14 are underway.
- Josh Cobble, executive director of enrollment management, provided an enrollment update.
- Jason O’Toole, executive director of student affairs, provided a housing update. The College’s dorms are at 90 percent occupancy which is slightly up from last year.
- Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented with general operating funds of $497,594.89; financial aid funds of $307,920.80; and Foundation funds of $29,840.27.
- Informed the Board that Libby Moore, administrative assistant to the president/Board clerk, Joycelyn Goff, accounting coordinator, and Julie Rorabaugh, Learning Management Administrator, plan to retire this summer.
- Accepted letters of resignation from Darshaya Gallard, assistant volleyball coach, effective April 8; Kaitlyn LaKous as adult education secretary, effective April 15; Courtney Peterson as financial aid service specialist, effective April 30; Marcia Wieland as faculty/director of vocal music, effective May 31; and Jeff Benito as head men’s tennis coach/dorm manager, effective June 30.
14. Approved the hiring of Steven Gream as head volleyball coach, effective April 25; approved the hiring of Shae Nichols as systems network administrator, effective May 1.
Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle shared findings from The Higher Learning Commission’s recent visit during the monthly Board meeting held Monday, March 21 in the McAtee Dining Center.
Dr. Rittle also informed the Board that Cowley College and Fort Hays State University (FHSU) are excited to announce the schools will enter into a partnership which will guarantee a minimum number of scholarships to be set aside specifically for Cowley College graduates who have a minimum of a 3.0 GPA and who transfer to FHSU after graduating with Cowley College.
Also during Monday’s meeting the Board was informed that Kelly Johnson, the College’s director of institutional research, plans to retire after 30 years at Cowley College, effective September 1, 2016.
In other matters:
- Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented with general operating funds of $894,326.42; financial aid funds of $2,653,742.97; and Foundation funds of $21,687.09.
- Dr. Gloria Walker, vice president of finance and administration, informed the Board of her findings on the possibility of adding handrails in the seating area of W.S. Scott Auditorium.
- Conducted the first reading of the following policy, Graduation Requirements. Final approval will take place at the April Board meeting.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board that 10 of Lavaughan Scheurich’s students at the Winfield penitentiary recently successfully passed the GED test.
- Paul Erdmann, vice president of information technology, informed the Board that work has resumed on the final phase of the fiber installation.
- Ben Schears, vice president of institutional advancement, said the College’s feasibility study for the Capital Campaign is cruising along. Schears also mentioned preparations for the Great Cowley Duck Dash are underway. The event will take place Saturday, May 14 at Spring Hill Farms. Also, the week prior to Duck Dash, the College’s annual commencement ceremony will take place on Saturday, May 7. There will be two ceremonies this year.
- Jason O’Toole, executive director of student affairs, provided the Board with an update on housing. Also, invitations are being sent for the Honors and Awards banquet that will take place at 6:30 p.m. April 19 in the Earle N. Wright Community Room.
- Shane Larson, athletic director, discussed the Tri County Tiger Classic that will be held at the Wellington Golf Club on Sunday, April 10 and the Brian Groves Memorial Golf Tournament that will take place June 25 at the Great Life Golf Course in Ark City.
- Accepted a letter of resignation from Riann Mullis as head volleyball coach, effective April 11; accepted a letter of resignation from John Sefel as Director of Theatre, at the conclusion of the spring semester; accepted a letter of resignation from Ben Schears as vice president of institutional advancement, effective June 30.
With spring classes nearly a month into the semester, Cowley College administrators informed the Board of Trustees that fall and summer enrollment will begin Tuesday, March 1. This and other items were discussed during the Board of Trustees monthly meeting held Monday, February 15 in the McAtee Dining Center.
Also during the meeting, Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle provided the Board with an update on the following items: legislative funding, re-centering costs, guns on campus, the capital campaign survey, and upcoming Higher Learning Commission visit on March 7-9. He also mentioned the athletic department feasibility study that is being conducted and will be shared with the Board in either October or November.
In other matters:
- Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented with general operating funds of $456,101.49; financial aid funds of $547,072.95; and Foundation funds of $12,225.94.
- Approved the dormitory plan and tuition and fees for the 2016-2017 academic year as presented by Dr. Gloria Walker, vice president of finance and administration. There will be a $3 per semester credit hour in the general fee, known as the incidental fee. Also, with the costs of additional security needed to cover anticipated changes in the concealed weapon legislation, and other technology securities, a security fee of $10 per student, per semester was approved. An increase of $200 per year was approved for double occupancy in the dorms and $500 per year for single occupancy at The Lodge Dormitory.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board that the College has begun surveying high school students in Sumner County to determine what types of courses, times, and delivery methods they prefer.
- Paul Erdmann, vice president of information technology, shared some of the things the IT Department has accomplished from February 2015 to February 2016. They have increased network speed, set up new email for faculty and staff, installed new server equipment, new disk backups and new network computer devices, eliminated equipment in the server room, expanded centralized storage, and begun work on the Student Information System which has a “go live” date of Sept. 12.
- Ben Schears, vice president of institutional advancement, informed the Board the Foundation staff has been working with the Foundation Board, Dr. Rittle, and Cargill Associates to finalize documents for the pre-capital campaign survey.
- Josh Cobble, executive director of enrollment management, discussed upcoming event days including Arts & Humanities Day on Wednesday, Feb. 17. Cobble also mentioned financial aid is preparing to open for the 2016-2017 academic year for awarding aid to eligible students.
- Jason O’Toole, executive director of student affairs, discussed the upcoming Kansas Community College Residence Life Conference and Spring Kansas Community College Public Safety Conference which will be held on the main campus on Thursday, February 18.
- Shane Larson, athletic director, discussed the upcoming Tri County Tiger Golf Classic that will be held at 1 p.m. April 10 in Wellington. Larson also mentioned the College’s involvement in the “Go Nuts” fundraiser in conjunction with the Wichita Wingnuts Community Benefit Concert on April 22-23 at Lawrence-Dumont Stadium.
Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle provided the Board of Trustees with his vision for the 2015-2016 academic year during the Board of Trustees monthly meeting held Tuesday, Jan. 19 in the McAtee Dining Center. Dr. Rittle said that since the August Board Retreat the College has a sense of where we were to where we are now.
Dr. Rittle spoke of Administrative Team Development with the hiring of two new vice presidents; compliance with governing bodies such as the upcoming Higher Learning Commission visit and the recent annual audit; Community Engagement and Relations such as clothing drives, police training, legislative forums and sporting events.; brand recognition and advancement with Cowley College recently being listed as the second most recognized College in the Greater Wichita Area; expansion of course offerings; reputation of the college; Business and Industry courses and offerings; sustainability of athletic programs; data driven decision making; advancement of external partnerships; new property acquisition; and new academic/athletic programs.
The recent addition of two new programs cost the College no new monies but directly tie to new enrollment.
“We are very mindful of entering into any debt process/activity in which a clear return on investment is not evident,” Dr. Rittle said.
In other matters:
- Dr. Rittle, along with Jim Ramirez, Board representative for professional negotiations, Dr. Gloria Walker and Dr. Harold Arnett, will meet with the College’s CEA representatives and Tim Knoles of the KNEA on Jan. 25. The new Professional Negotiations Act passed last year in the legislature mandates that all bargaining teams (both local and board teams), receive training on the new regulations and dates set forth, before you can actively start bargaining for the 2016-2017 year. The notice date has been moved from Feb. 1 to March 31.
- Dr. Gloria Walker, vice president of finance and administration, spoke of the heaters that were recently installed in the McAtee Dining Center. She also mentioned the renovation and move of the Cowley College Security and Public Safety Department.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, provided an update on the recent armed intruder training provided by Director of Security and Public Safety Officer Matt Stone during the College’s in-service. He also mentioned the College is progressing with the construction apprentice training partnership.
- Paul Erdmann, vice president of information technology, informed the Board that the “go live” date for the Student Information System has been moved to Sept. 12.
- Ben Schears, vice president of institutional advancement, spoke of the recent contract the Cowley College Foundation approved with Cargill Associates to begin the first phase of the capital campaign.
- Josh Cobble, executive director of enrollment management, provided an enrollment update. Cobble also said campus visits, first time prospects, and applications were up in the month of December. Enrollment at the College’s Wichita Downtown Center continues to climb and the school is continually working on new avenues for the location to accommodate the increasing demand.
- Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented with general operating funds of $446,120.01; financial aid funds of $1,252,074.88; and Foundation funds of $6,422.61.
- The Board asked the College Administration to come up with a fall presentation date to be presented at the February Board meeting in regards to conducting a feasibility study on future academic, athletic, and activities programs.
December 14, 2015
Cowley College’s Board of Trustees approved two new course programs during the Board of Trustees monthly meeting held Monday, December 14 in the McAtee Dining Center.
The two new course programs are Fire Science (Certificate A) and Milling Technician (Vocational Certificate).
Also during the meeting, Christina Henson of Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk & Loyd, LLC, provided Cowley College’s Board of Trustees with an audit report. In performing the audit, the accountants examine the validity of financial transactions according to generally accepted accounting principles and state law.
Later in the meeting, Cowley College president Dr. Dennis Rittle informed the Board of some of the major happenings at the College over the past month. A few of the highlights included the Kansas Department of Commerce and Kansas Board of Regents recently awarding the Workforce AID project for Rubbermaid to Cowley College; the College and Best Western Patterson Park Inn teaming together to host a successful Thanksgiving Basketball Classic; the College recently presenting Newell-Rubbermaid in Winfield with a Champion Level plaque in recognition of their work with the school; Dr. Rittle and Stephani Johns-Hines, associate vice president for Mulvane and online operations, served as presenters and panelists at the Regional Kansas Association of City/County Managers Conference held Thursday, Dec. 3 at the Best Western Holiday Manor in McPherson, KS; Dr. Rittle served as a keynote speaker during the Arkansas City Chamber of Commerce noon networking luncheon held Tuesday, Dec. 1 in the President’s Private Dining Room; Dr. Rittle recently held a strategic planning meeting with Fort Hays State University president Dr. Mirta Martin; and the College has implemented several new programs.
In other matters:
- Saw Dr. Rittle present Cera Magana of Wichita, KS, with a gift for being named the school’s November Student of the Month. “Thank you all so much. It really was an honor just to be nominated. I am happy people are noticing what I do,” Magana said.
- The Board approved the 2015-2016 final county valuation and mill levy. The mill levy is 18.915, which is up from the final 2014-2015 levy of 18.790.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, spoke of the Workforce AID project for Rubbermaid that was awarded to Cowley College. This will provide training for 12 students in all specified areas and is built around Cowley’s Mechatronics program, which was originally developed in collaboration with Rubbermaid several years ago. The training will begin in January and will deliver 13 credit hours for the trainees. Those that complete the training will be employed by Rubbermaid.
- Brian McChesney, systems administrator, provided an update on the Student Information System. The second pass for data migration and cutover to the portal (JICS) was performed last week. Training has been resumed and discussions with Jenzabar are underway about which third party products need to be integrated.
Students in Cowley College’s Media Club had an opportunity to share details of their recent attendance at the Associated Collegiate Press/College Media Association National College Media Convention in Austin, TX during the Board of Trustees monthly meeting held Monday, Nov. 16 in the McAtee Dining Center.
In other matters:
- Approved the recommendation to reschedule December’s Board meeting to Dec. 14 at 6 p.m. in the President’s Private Dining Room of the McAtee Dining Center. A pre-holiday meal for the Board of Trustees will be held at 5 p.m. prior to the regular meeting, with no business during this time.
- Held a first reading on proposed changes to the following policies: Vacation-Administrative Staff (113.00) and Classified Personnel (166.00). The changes would remove confusion and enact the best practices in higher education as they relate to the accrual and management of employee vacation leave. In addition, the application of a consistent formula to compute the accumulation of maximum vacation leave benefits for non-administrative employees, who comprise the majority of the college’s full-time non-faculty employees. Final approval will be requested at the December Board meeting.
- Dr. Gloria Walker, vice president of finance and administration, provided the Board with analysis of lease versus buy for Cowley College’s current fleet of vehicles. She provided the Board with a pair of scenarios.
- Board member Sid Regnier asked Dr. Walker to provide the Board, at a future meeting, with a lease versus buy analysis for Cowley’s current fleet of buses.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board of a new course approved for the Non-Destructive Testing program. Phased Array Level I is a course that was requested by the Career and Technical Education advisory group. It may be submitted as a Stand Alone Parent Program as a one-course certificate program.
Sarah Bryant, Cowley College director of marketing, provided Cowley College’s Board of Trustees with an update on the presidential installation during the annual Board of Trustees meeting held Monday in the McAtee Dining Center.
The Installation ceremony for Dr. Dennis C. Rittle, Cowley College’s fifth president, will take place at 2 p.m. on Sunday, November 15. The ceremony, which is free and open to the public, will be held in the Robert Brown Theatre, on the College’s main campus in Arkansas City.
Also during the meeting, Cowley College president Dr. Dennis Rittle informed the Board that classes have begun at Cowley’s Wichita Downtown Center. He also mentioned the redesign of the Cowley College website, and the several business and industry visits that are upcoming at the main campus.
In other matters:
- Approved the formation of a Finance sub-committee and an Academic sub-committee and the appointment of Board members to those committees. These sub-committees will allow members of the Board to serve alongside administrators at the College.
- The Board approved the Bills and Claims with general operating funds of $435,766.50; financial aid funds of $1,244,832.45; and Foundation funds of $7,433.09.
- Dr. Gloria Walker, Cowley College vice president of finance and administration, provided a security and public safety update. Dr. Walker also shared an update on the impending legislation on open-carry fire arms and how Cowley College is in discussions on how the school will ensure its students, employees, and community safety.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, Cowley College vice president of academic affairs, discussed the recent meeting he and Stephani Johns-Hines had with Newell Rubbermaid representatives to discuss the development of training programs. Dr. Arnett and Stephani Johns-Hines will also meet with Westrock (formerly Calmar) representatives on Oct. 22.
- Paul Erdman, Cowley College vice president of information technology, discussed the network reconfiguration and equipment installation that is ongoing at the College.
- Ben Schears, Cowley College vice president of institutional advancement, shared news of a recently finalized scholarship established by Coca Cola Bottling Company in Winfield, KS, and a scholarship being created by Galaxy Technology to provide assistance to machine tool majors. Schears also mentioned the Cowley College Foundation has begun conversations with a campaign firm in preparation of a feasibility study for a future campaign, and provided the Board with a year to year comparison on year to date gifts received by the Cowley College Foundation.
- Josh Cobble, executive director of enrollment management, provided an admissions update. The admissions staff is staying busy with high school visits, tours and campus events. Spring enrollment will begin Monday, Nov. 2.
- Jason O’Toole, Cowley College executive director of student affairs, informed the Board that the College’s dorms are at full capacity.
- Shane Larson, Cowley College athletic director, shared news that the Tiger Booster Club Blitz Drive surpassed its goal of $70,000 and has now raised $71,688.
After 25 years at Cowley College Mindi Shriver announced her plans to retire on January 1, 2016 during Cowley College’s Board of Trustees meeting held Monday in the McAtee Dining Center.
Also during the meeting, Cowley College president Dr. Dennis Rittle discussed the recent ribbon cutting ceremony held at the school’s Wichita Downtown Center, the upcoming Vice President’s Meet & Greet Reception for Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, and Dr. Gloria Walker, vice president of finance and administration, to be held from 4-6 p.m. Tuesday, September 29 in the Earle N. Wright Community Room, and the Presidential Installation Sunday, Nov. 15 at 2 p.m. in the Brown Theatre and reception to follow in the Earle N. Wright Community Room.
Dr. Rittle also mentioned the Manufacturing Day event that will take place Friday, October 2 at the school’s Walker Technology Building in Arkansas City. Stan Ahlerich, Executive Director of the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors, has been invited to speak about the impact of manufacturing on the local and state economy.
Dr. Rittle thanked the Tiger Athletic Hall of Fame committee, the Tiger Booster Club Board, and the college’s Board of Trustees for their work during the process of selecting three new members into the Tiger Athletic Hall of Fame. All-American track/cross country athlete Josephat Boit, women’s basketball coach Darin Spence, and All-American baseball player John Urick were recently chosen to be inducted into the 2016 Tiger Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, January 16, 2016.
Dr. Rittle also shared news of an official invite he received to meet with Sumner County commissioners on Monday, September 28 to explore Cowley College making a larger footprint in Sumner County.
In other matters:
- KACCT Board delegate, Ned Graham, and Cowley College president Dennis Rittle attended the annual KACCT/COP meeting Sept. 11-12 at Cloud County Community College. Graham and Dr. Rittle provided a review of the meeting.
- Dr. Gloria Walker, vice president of finance and administration, informed the Board that she plans to seek bids on a CD that is maturing on Sept. 22. She also said the relocation of the welding program on the Mulvane campus is nearly complete, and policy 132 (Purchasing) and policy 142 (Access to College Facilities) are under review for developing and/or revising associated procedures. The fiscal year 2015-16 budget is also to be submitted to the Kansas Board of Regents before September 30, 2015.
- Dr. Harold Arnett, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board that Ti Training Corp was on Cowley College’s main campus in Ark City Sept. 15-16 to shoot a variety of training scenarios for Criminal Justice training. The director was so pleased with the scenarios that Criminal Justice instructor Frank Owens developed that he is interested in using them for national distribution. Dr. Arnett also stated that several faculty members are currently developing proposals that would provide potential students with the opportunity to earn certificates in a relatively short time that would increase their earning potential and/or employment options.
- Josh Cobble, executive director of enrollment management, informed the Board of the college’s presence at the Kansas State Fair. He also mentioned with the recent opening of Cowley College’s Wichita Downtown Center the college is working on engaging the local area through the Wichita Chamber of Commerce events like Exposure as well as working with businesses in local neighborhoods with plans to expand those opportunities. Cobble also said Health & Human Services Day will take place Oct. 8 and Social Science/BCIT Day will be held Oct. 20.
- Shane Larson, athletic director, informed the Board that $69,000 in pledges have been received through the Tiger Booster Club Blitz Drive and the Foster Parent Meet and Greet will be held at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, September 27 in the Earle N. Wright Community Room.
- Appointed Dr. Gloria J. Walker as Treasurer of the Board. Dr. Walker replaces interim treasurer Dr. Dennis Rittle.
August 10, 2015
Cowley College’s Board of Trustees unanimously approved the 2015-2016 operating budget for the college during its annual monthly meeting held Monday in the McAtee Dining Center.
The 2015-2016 budget has a projected mill levy of 18.75, which is s decrease from the final 2014-2015 levy (18.79).
Revenues are based on in-state enrollments, a state operating grant, and an estimated county valuation of 247,991,044. Expenditures are based on anticipated enrollments at each campus and objectives as set forth by the Board of Trustees and the Administrative Team.
The college’s total budget for 2015-2016 is $32.5 million.
In other matters:
- Discussed the Fall Retreat conducted Saturday, August 8. Items discussed at the Retreat were College Mission Statement, College Vision, and strategic goals. The Mission Statement states “Cowley College is committed to providing opportunities for learning excellence, personal achievement, and community engagement.” The Vision Statement states “Champion the relevance of two-year colleges in higher education through holistic learning and workforce development opportunities.” Strategic Plan Goals are, planning and leading, student success, valuing people, student/stakeholder needs, technology infrastructure, and financial parameters. The metric for the presidential evaluation sheets was approved at Monday’s meeting and a presidential installation date was discussed. The date of Sunday, Nov. 15 at 2 p.m. inside the Robert Brown Theatre was approved for the presidential installation.
- Welcomed Dr. Gloria Walker, Cowley College vice president of finance and administration, who will begin employment on September 1, 2015.
- Discussed enrollment figures. Although enrollment is currently behind last year’s pace, Dr. Rittle is encouraged by the progress made over the last week. “We are closing the gap rapidly and it is conceivable we will touch last year’s FTE,” Dr. Rittle said. “I would like to thank Josh Cobble, Marcus Hicks, and their (admissions) team as well as the marketing team. It has been a concerted effort to get the word out. The college is a great asset.”
- The annual KACCT/COP meeting will be held September 11-12 at Cloud County Community College.
- Approved Board representative Brian Sanderholm’s attendance at the 46th annual Community College Leadership Congress October 14-17 in San Diego, CA at the Manchester Grand Hyatt.