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Northern Essex Community College Board of Trustees
Minutes of Meeting (Official) – April 5, 2017

A meeting of the Northern Essex Community College Board of Trustees was held in the El Hefni Allied Health and Technology Center at the Lawrence Campus, Room LC301 at 6:00PM.

Ms. Acosta
Mr. Cox
Mr. D’Orazio
Ms. Estrella
Mr. Forman
Mr. Garcia (arrived 6:18PM)
Mr. Guilmette
Mr. Linehan
Ms. Paley Nadel

Absent: Ms. Daly O’Brien, Ms. Cerasuolo-O’Rorke

Also Present: President Glenn


Chairman Linehan called the meeting to order at 6:02 PM.


Chairman Linehan opened up the nomination process for the election of the Vice Chair. Trustee D’Orazio nominated Trustee Cox for Vice Chair. The nomination was seconded by Trustee Estrella. Having no other nominations, Chairman Linehan declared the nominations closed. By roll-call vote, Trustee Cox was unanimously elected Vice Chairman of the Board.
Chairman Linehan then opened up the nomination process for the election of Secretary. Trustee Cox nominated Trustee Paley-Nadel. The nomination was seconded by Trustee. Having no other nominations, Chairman Linehan declared the nominations closed. By roll-call vote, Trustee Paley-Nadel was unanimously elected Secretary of the Board.
Chairman Linehan congratulated Trustees Cox and Paley-Nadel.


On a Motion by Trustee D’Orazio, seconded by Trustee Acosta, it was voted unanimously to approve the March 1, 2017 minutes as presented.
Trustee Garcia arrived at 6:18PM.


There was no correspondence.


President Glenn introduced two (2) new employees this month.
Maria Campechano is NECC’s new Bursar. Prior to coming to NECC, Ms. Campechano was the Assistant Director of Student Accounts at Middlesex Community College. Mary Murphy is NECC’s new Staff Associate for Research and Planning. Ms. Murphy has her Masters Degree in Criminal Justice with a concentration in Research Methods.
The Board welcomed both new employees to the college.


  1. Competency-Based Education (ADM-3385-040517)

  2. President Glenn introduced Dr. William Heineman, Vice President of Academic Affairs who then introduced Dr. Kim Burns, Dean of Academic Innovations who provided a report on Competency-Based Education (CBE) at NECC. Dr. Heineman noted that NECC was the first community college in Massachusetts to launch Competency-Based Education certificate program in public higher education this year. He noted that CBE is a new way of approaching and measuring student achievements, class time, and grades. CBE focuses on student learning attainment and the proven outcomes of that learning. Students take classes at their own rate and there is less focus on “traditional” classroom schedules. Outcomes may take more or less time depending on the student. Dr. Burns then provided a brief presentation of Competency-Based Education.
    Dr. Burns noted that there are two groups of students. There are the “coming of age experience” students directly out of high school who want to have the whole college experience, and then there are the other groups that are referred to as “adult learners” who don’t have the flexibility or time to have the whole college experience. Competency-Based Education gives students another option to take courses. It allows flexible schedule personalization and also allows work experience that can be applied to their learning. Students can complete courses online, which fits into their busy schedules and at a pace that will work for them. CBE students are afforded flexible course start dates and also have a coach to help them stay on track. CBE students are required to take a mandatory orientation, and they need to get an 80 percent in a course in order to go on to next course.
    There were nine CBE courses for the Fall semester with 61 enrollments and eight courses for the Spring with 71 enrollments.
    Trustee Acosta asked if this program can be done in one semester. Dr. Burns indicated that the courses run over a 15-week semester, but students can start and end at their own pace. However, there needs to be a certain number of students to start the semester.
    With no further questions, Chairman Linehan and President Glenn thanked Dr. Burns for her report to the Board.


There was none.


  1. Invitation to Commencement, Saturday, May 20, 2017 (ADM-3386-040517)

  2. President Glenn reminded the Trustees that NECC 2017 Commencement is scheduled for Saturday, May 20th at 11AM at the Haverhill Campus. Trustees are asked to arrive in D129 in the Sports and Fitness Center by 10:15AM. Cheryl Goodwin will be sending along additional information via email.

  3. FY18 Budget (Verbal)

  4. President Glenn noted that nothing has really changed about the state budget since the March meeting. The college is not planning for more base funding from the house or senate budget and is reviewing the budget to determine if reductions can be made. President Glenn reminded Trustees that enrollment has declined and NECC is not alone. Most of the other colleges in the state, including some U-Mass campuses, are also experiencing lower enrollments. President Glenn noted that hopefully retention efforts, international students, competency-based education and other new initiatives will help with the enrollment decline.

  5. Valley Works Career Center (Verbal)

  6. President Glenn noted that NECC has been selected as the new operator of the Valley Works Career Centers. He thanked George Moriarty, Executive Director of Workforce Development and Corporate Relations and Wendy Shaffer, Dean of Development, for the terrific work they did on the proposal for this project. Both the Lawrence and Haverhill proposals involved moving the career center back downtown. President Glenn noted that this is appealing because it helps the college advance its mission, serving similar populations of people, and can be a source for student recruitment, employer outreach and maximizes workshop outreach.

  7. NECC 2020: Strategic Plan Progress Update (Verbal)

  8. President Glenn noted that one of the strategic plan goals is to increase opportunities for faculty and staff to encourage professional growth, foster experimentation, and advance curriculum innovation. There are around 108 full time faculty and several hundred of part-time or adjunct faculty. Working with Dr. Kim Burns, the college has hired three (3) adjunct faculty fellows to provide professional development to adjunct faculty. President Glenn noted that adjunct faculty are an important part of the institution, and it’s important to provide them with this professional development support as well.
    President Glenn also noted that the Academic Preparation Department is training faculty in how to teach reading and writing in new co-requisite models by pairing courses such as developmental writing and English Composition 1 to accelerate the students’ path to college-level coursework. Students enrolled in these paired courses complete college-level English at a higher rate than those in a traditional pathway.
    President Glenn also congratulated Dr. Kim Burns for an outstanding professional day. He noted that it was one of the best professional days held to date. There were a range of student speakers, and it was a good opportunity for faculty and staff to hear what the student’s needs are. President Glenn thanked Dr. Burns.

  9. Haverhill Campus Update (Verbal)

  10. President Glenn noted that the Spurk building is coming along. It already has new windows installed. The second and third floors are on-schedule. The first floor is running slightly behind than expected, but everything should be ready for the fall semester.

  11. Lawrence Campus Update (Verbal)

  12. President Glenn noted that Dimitry building project has been delayed and will be going until the Fall of 2018, not as it was originally planned. The good news that is that it is still happening. President Glenn noted that he will provide the trustees with more information as it becomes available.
    A NEASC site visitor for Lyndon State College was at the Lawrence Campus on Tuesday, April 4th. The second floor at 420 Common Street will be the “hub” for the Communiversity partnership with our 4-year partners, and the space will be finished by the end of the month.

In addition, President Glenn also noted that both practical and registered nursing program received full approval status. After struggling for a couple of years, the practical nursing program scored a passing rate of 90%. President Glenn thanked Dean Mary Farrell, Professor Jean Dyer, and Dr. Heineman for all their efforts.
President Glenn also congratulated Trustee Garcia for being selected as the governor’s Foster Furcolo Scholarship. The Foster Furcolo Scholarship awards students a two-year scholarship covering tuition for U-Mass Boston. Trustee Garcia noted that he was very pleased and honored to receive this scholarship. He gave special thanks to Jean Poth Vice President of Institutional Advancement and Lindsay Graham, Director, Scholarship, Alumni and Community Relations.


  1. Personnel Actions:

    • Emeritus (ADM-3387-040517)
    • President Glenn noted that at Commencement each year, the college honors those employees who have been granted Emeritus status. Emeritus status is conferred to employees who have retired and had exhibited years of dedicated and exceptional work.
      On a Motion by Trustee Cox, seconded by Trustee Estrella, it was voted unanimously to approve four (4) emeritus status recommendations as listed in Addendum A.

  2. Grants:

    • Massachusetts Workforce Skills Cabinet: Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant Program (ADM-3388-040517)
    • President Glenn noted that there was one (1) grant for the Mass Workforce Skills Cabinet: Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant program in the amount of $495,000 for Trustee approval.
      On a motion by Trustee D’Orazio, seconded by Trustee Estrella, it was voted unanimously to accept the grant award of $495,000 from the Massachusetts Workforce Skills Cabinet: Massachusetts Skills Capital Grant Program entitled Culinary Arts and Mechatronics.


  1. Trustee Garcia:

    • Invitation to Student Orientation
    • Trustee Garcia is encouraging all trustees to attend student orientations or have the student orientation experience on-line on the NECC website. President Glenn noted that the link to the student orientation will be emailed to trustees.

    • May-BOT Presentation-Hispanic Student Engagement
    • Trustee Garcia requested to have Fran Allen Acosta come to the May Board meeting to have a discussion on his innovation with urbanization with the city of Lawrence and NECC. Fran would welcome the opportunity to provide his insights with the board.


With no other business, Chairman Linehan adjourned the meeting at 6:46PM.

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