News & Events




Press Release



October 20, 2015


Board receives update on presidential installation
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.

Students and friends of the College as well as community members and leaders from across the region are encouraged to attend.
A reception will be held in the Earle N. Wright Community Room immediately following the event.

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:
1.  Cowley College president Dr. Dennis Rittle recognized Caroline Fulbright of Hiawatha, KS, with a gift for being named the school’s September Student of the Month. “Cowley is a place to call home and being named Student of the Month is an honor I will be forever be grateful for and cherish,” Fulbright said.
2.   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. Board member Sid Regnier will serve as the Finance sub-committee chair, while Bob Juden will serve as the Academic sub-committee chair. Dr. Gloria Walker and Dr. Rittle will serve as ex-officios on the Finance sub-committee with Board members JoLynn Foster and Ned Graham also on the committee. Dr. Harold Arnett and Dr. Rittle are ex officios on the Academic sub-committee with Brian Sanderholm and Jim Ramirez also on the committee. The two sub-committees will run from October 2015 until the July 2016 Board meeting when new membership may be appointed.
3.  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.
4.  Board member Brian Sanderholm provided a review of the ACCT Leadership Congress he attended May 14-17 in San Diego, CA.
5.   Dr. Gloria Walker, Cowley College vice president of finance and administration, provided a security and public safety update. She also discussed the formation of an inclement weather team that will communicate school closing messages to the Cowley College community. Dr. Walker also shared results of a recent security and public safety department survey. A total of 293 Cowley College students and employees took part in the survey to further discussion of ensuring Cowley College campuses are safe, and fostering a safe learning and work environment for students, faculty, staff, and visitors. The survey, which was made up of 50 percent Cowley employees and 50% Cowley students, showed 83 percent of respondents feel very safe while on campus, and specifically the Arkansas City campus. Also, 93 percent of respondents said they carry a cell phone while on campus.
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. The Kansas Board of Regents (KBOR) has requested that the College hold any potential actions until the KBOR has completed the discussions with the Legislature. They are anticipating more information will be released after the first of the year 2016.
6.  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. Dr. Arnett also shared news of students in Humanities instructor Julie Kratt’s class that had their writings published in the textbook “Building Writing Skills the Hands-on Way”.
7.  Paul Erdman, Cowley College vice president of information technology, discussed the network reconfiguration and equipment installation that is ongoing at the College. Dr. Rittle praised the work being done. “Paul has a great team. They are very meticulous and extremely efficient with their time.”
8.  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. “I like the new format,” Board Chair Dennis K. Shurtz said. “I applaud you for that.”
9.  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. Cobble also shared news that Cowley College has been selected as a TOP SCHOOL in the 2016 MAE&T (Military Advanced Education and Transition) Guide to Colleges & Universities research study.
10.  Jason O’Toole, Cowley College executive director of student affairs, informed the Board that the College’s dorms are at full capacity. He also spoke of the tremendous work being done by the Student Support Services TRIO Program, which currently has 160 students in the program.
11.  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. Larson also discussed the eteamsponsor campaigns that have recently kicked off.
Larson also spoke of the following upcoming events: The No. 12-ranked Cowley volleyball team will host No. 8-ranked Johnson County Wednesday, Oct. 28 in a match that should determine the Jayhawk East champion. The DodgeBallalah Dodgeball Tournament will take place Thursday, Oct. 29, and the Arkalalah Classic Basketball Tournament will be held Oct. 30-31 inside W.S. Scott Auditorium. There will be for men’s teams and four women’s teams at the Classic. Larson also mentioned there is no longer a Jayhawk East and Jayhawk West Conference for basketball, there will be only one Jayhawk Conference champion.
12.  Dr. Rittle thanked Cowley volleyball coach Riann Mullis and cheer/dance coach Lindsay Sanderholm for their efforts in honoring victims of the shooting at Umpqua (OR) Community College during the home volleyball match on Oct. 14.
13.  Board Chair Dennis K. Shurtz asked Dr. Gloria Walker, Cowley College vice president of finance and administration, to look into whether it is more feasible to rent, lease, or own the fleet of college vehicles.
14.  Accepted a letter of retirement from Ellen Kelly as Human Resource Specialist, effective Dec. 31, 2015. “It is both with joy and regret that I announce her retirement,” Dr. Rittle said. Kelly will continue on a part time basis doing payroll until all the payroll is on the new SIS system.
15.  Held a 5-minute executive session for preliminary discussions relating to property acquisition. No action followed.