Cowley College receives exceptional audit

December 17, 2021

Monday night’s Cowley College Board of Trustees meeting was the final meeting for outgoing Trustees Ned Graham, JoLynn Foster, and Brian Sanderholm.

The Trustees were treated to dinner prior to the meeting thanks to Great Western Dining. Monday’s meeting was held at the Short General Education Center in Wellington, KS.

Graham and Sanderholm had served on the Board of Trustees since 2013, while Foster had served on the Board since 2015.

Also, during Monday’s meeting, the Board approved the honorary title of President Emeritus to former Cowley College president Dr. Patrick J. McAtee. Dr. McAtee spent 26 years as president of the College prior to his retiring in 2012.

In other matters:

    1. Cowley College president Dr. Dennis C. Rittle provided a college update. Wished the Board, College employees and community members a very Merry Christmas. Students have entered winter break; however, the four-week winter session is set to begin December 20th. Dr. Rittle also mentioned that phase one of the Ireland Hall remediation is completed, the turf project is progressing nicely, while administration begins putting together requests for proposals for the construction of a new bus barn. Lastly, Dr. Rittle mention the Sumner Campus housing project that is well underway, and the ag shed that is set to be completed by Christmas.
    2. Dr. Rittle provided the Board with a recap of the December 3-4 KACCT Quarterly Meeting at Pratt Community College.
    3. Trustee Abrams provided the Board with a Trustee Academic Subcommittee update.
      A. The Board approved the Precision Ag Certificates A, B, C and the Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree as presented.
    4. Chair Wilson provided a statement to the Citizens of Sumner County.
    5. Trustee JoLynn Foster provided the Board with a Trustee Finance Subcommittee update.
    6. Board Chair Gary Wilson provided the Board with a Trustee Policy Subcommittee update.
      A. The Board held first readings on the following policies: (127.00) Drug-Free Workplace; (165.00) Sick Leave Full-Time Non-Faculty Employees; (166.00) Vacation Full-Time Non-Faculty Employees; and (205.00) Curriculum Development.
    7. Approved the Consent Agenda to include, minus the Financial Reports:
      A. Board Minutes of the November 15th meeting.
      B. Approved the Financial Report for the month ending November 30.
      C. Bills and Claims. Approved fiscal officers of the College to execute payment of all bills and claims as presented.
      D. Administrative Reports.
      E. The Board approved the following policies: (106.00) President Emeritus; (159.00) Professional Attire; (182.00) Naming of College Facilities, Programs, and Events.
      F. Approved the resignation of Luke Larson as public safety officer.
    8. Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk and Loyd, LLC. has completed the annual audit of all college funds for the year ended June 30, 2021. In performing the audit, the accountants examined the validity of financial transactions according to generally accepted accounting principles and State law. In addition, they have been instructed to apply the standards established by the policies of the Board of Trustees. Holly Harper, VP of Finance and Administration, provided the Management Discussion and Analysis (MDA) and Swindoll, Janzen, Hawk and Loyd, LLC. provided the audit findings. The 2020-2021 Audit may be viewed on the College web site.
    9. The Board approved the recommendation to purchase styling chairs and stations from Armstrong McCall for $38,680 through Perkins Grant funds.
    10. The Board approved the right to renew the Mulvane Tech Center lease for a two-year option term, which will commence on July 1, 2022 and terminate on June 30, 2024 with the basic monthly rent of $7,500, with all other conditions of the existing lease remaining the same.
    11. Trustees Foster and Zimmerman presented for first review edits to the Board of Trustees Handbook.
    12. Jan Grace, Campus Operations Officer, gave an update on the future Robotics Challenge that will be held at the Sumner Campus in Wellington.
    13. Holly Harper, vice president of finance and administration, provided the Board with a Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF) update.
    14. Dr. Michelle Schoon, vice president of academic affairs, informed the Board that so far this semester, the Writing Center has worked with 197 students through 385 visits. This is a 50% increase in tutoring visits and a 93% increase in the number of students using the service from this time in the Fall 2020 semester.
    15. Paul Erdmann, vice president of information technology, provided an update on projects the information technology staff has worked on over the past month.
    16. Kristi Shaw, executive director of enrollment management, provided an enrollment update. Shaw also informed the Board of the recruiting events the admissions representatives have assisted with over the past month and have lined up in the coming months.
    17. Debbie Phelps, executive director of institutional effectiveness, informed the Board that the Kansas Promise Data Collection was submitted through the collaborative efforts of the Bursar, Director of Financial Aid, Director of Retention and the IE Office during November.
    18. Julie Rhoads, faculty liaison, provided updates from several Cowley instructors.
    19. Jason O’Toole, director of athletics, informed the Board that the turf project for baseball continues with turf currently being installed with the hope of completion later next week. The turf company has also began work on the softball field.
    20. The meeting adjourned at 7:20p.m.


Rama Peroo

Director of Institutional Communication & Public Relations
Cowley College
125 South 2nd Street
Arkansas City, KS 67005