This site is best viewed in Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or EdgeX

Northern Essex Community College Board Of Trustees
Minutes of Meeting (Official) – April 11, 2018

A meeting of the Northern Essex Community College Board of Trustees was held at the David HartlebTechnology Center at the Haverhill Campus, Room TC103A at 5:00 PM.

Ms. Benning
Ms. Cerasuolo-O’Rorke
Mr. Cox
Mr. D’Orazio
Mr. Forman
Mr. Guilmette
Mr. Linehan
Ms. Paley Nadel
Ms. Worden

Absent:  Ms. Borislow, Ms. Fernandez

Also Present:  President Glenn

Call to Order

Chairman Linehan called the meeting to order at 5:05 PM.

Election Of Officers

Chairman Linehan opened up the nomination process for the election of the Vice Chair.  Trustee Forman nominated Trustee Cox for Vice Chair.  The nomination was seconded by Trustee Guilmette.  Having no other nominations, Chairman Linehan declared the nominations closed.  Trustee Cox was unanimously voted Vice Chair of the Board.

Chairman Linehan then opened up the nomination process for the election of Secretary.  Trustee Forman nominated Trustee Paley-Nadel.  The nomination was seconded by Trustee Cox.  Having no other nominations, Chairman Linehan declared the nominations closed.  Trustee Paley-Nadel was unanimously voted Secretary of the Board.

Chairman Linehan congratulated Trustees Cox and Paley-Nadel.

Approval of Minutes

On a Motion by Trustee D’Orazio, seconded by Trustee Benning, it was voted unanimously to approve the December 6, 2017 minutes as presented.


President Glenn handed out a “thank you” card from Trustee Cox for the support he had from trustees following the passing of his mother.

Unfinished Business


Education Report

Sabbatical Report:  Research on Peace Poetry as a Genre (ADM-3458-041118)

President Glenn introduced, Dr. Paul St.-Armand, NECC English Professor who took a sabbatical to explore a research on Peace Poetry and wrote a book on the history of poetry. Before starting his presentation, Dr. St.-Armand thanked Lane and the BOT.  Dr. Armand noted that he wrote a book on the history of poetry called Planting Peace: Developing a Peace Poetry Literacy Program.

Dr. St.-Armand noted that part of his sabbatical leave accomplishments were to help draft a monograph that includes a history of the genre called peace poetry and its contemporary thematic applications; a guide to initiate a peace poetry community literacy program for schools, churches and local community art programs; a review of NECC’s service learning program; and a guide to creating contests and reading events; and a workshop entry on Peace Poetry into the 2018 Massachusetts Poetry Festival.

Dr. St.-Armand’s mission is to continue to bring students, teachers and parents into a social context where peace will be the concept and literature as a way to encourage a language of possibility.

Dr. St.-Armand noted that he picked a variety of themes such as war, grieve, peace, healing and rage and attached them to poems.   He also noted that Professor Lancy Hidy was a big part of the poster assignment sheet.

For the past 10 years, Northern Essex Community College has sponsored the Peace Poetry contest, which offers opportunities to students from first grade to adult to consider poetry when thinking about peace.     This year teachers, poets and potential poets will help students in creating capacities in reflecting peace as a human strength.  Each year results in the publication of an NECC Peace Poetry Chapbook and a public event that includes participants from over 40 Massachusetts and New Hampshire schools.  These workshops have been very well attended.

Dr. St. Armand noted that the next big poetry event is on Friday, May 4th, 6p-8p at the David Hartleb Technology Center at NECC.

Presentation of NECC’s New Website (Verbal)

President Glenn introduced Nathan Gilbert, Director of Online Communications.   President Glenn noted that the college went through a lengthy process in working on the redevelopment of the website and Nathan had a big role in helping with the redesign.

Nathan thanked President Glenn and then noted that one of the biggest changes on the website was on the main page with improved information architecture such as videos focusing on Haverhill campus, Lawrence campus and extracurricular activities.  He noted that after talking to students one of their biggest frustrations was that they loved the college but the old website did not express it. All links have been removed although the prime navigations are still there with gateways on top.

Nathan noted that the homepage has a goal-based navigation for those who have a particular goal in mind.   For each navigation area, they have students or alumni of programs and current student gateway.

Nathan ended by noting that this new site is much more marketing focus for prospective students as well as for current students as it accommodates what they need to go the area of resources of the student needs.

Trustee Forman wanted to know how long the new website has been running.  Nathan noted that the website has been running since November, 2017.

Presentation of Valley Works at NECC (Verbal)

President Glenn introduced Linda Rohrer, the new Executive Director of Valley Works.   President Glenn noted that Ms. Rohrer joined ValleyWorks on the summer of 2017.  ValleyWorks transitioned from being a city to a state entity which faced many challenges but now they are part of Northern Essex Community College staff.  Ms. Rohrer will be presenting what changes have been happening at ValleyWorks.

Ms. Rohrer noted to the board of trustees that ValleyWorks continues to work with more than 900 employers and more than 10,000 employees annually.  With major changes upon leadership Ms. Rohrer highlighted how important education and workforce development and having the synergy of the community college is crucial.   Results of this creates stronger leadership, connections to businesses and additional resources to ValleyWorks staff.

Ms. Rohrer noted that changes have taken place at Valleyworks across the state and probably across the country.   The old two-sided model for Valley Works consisted of Job Seeker Services and Employer Services.   The new model for ValleyWorks now is that all staff are organized into four sector teams, healthcare, manufacturing, trades and IT and professional services with all these reflecting priority industries across the Merrimack Valley.   The staff teams are composed of business service representatives, recruiters and counselors.

Ms. Rohrer noted that the benefits of these new models will be deepening relationships with regional employers, staff becoming experts on the needs of their industry to better serve employers; and it will increase the number of employer openings filled by ValleyWorks.

Ms. Rohrer noted that it was a period of transition for the staff.  In February the ValleyWorks center moved from the Union Street office to downtown Lawrence to an older building, a 22% reduction of staff at the end of the fiscal year due to loss of funding source and the transition from being city to state employees.

Trustee Worden asked Ms. Rohrer where the funding for ValleyWorks comes from.  Ms. Rohrer noted that it comes from the US Department of Labor.   Ms. Rohrer noted that the funding lost was due to lower levels of unemployment in the region.  Trustee Cerasuolo-O”Rorke recommended to Ms. Rohrer to come back in six months to see how the measurements and outcomes are doing.

George Moriarty, NECC Executive Director of Workforce Development and Corporate Relations, thanked Steve Fabbrucci, Vice President of Human Resource Development and his staff for all the help they gave ValleyWorks with the transition from being city to state employees.

Report of Board Committees

Audit and Finance Sub-Committee

  1. GWK Investment Management Update (Verbal)

    Trustee Paley Nadel noted that the Sub-Committee reviewed the portfolio from the GW&K consultants regarding the college’s investments.  The subcommittee proposes the following change to diversify the portfolio further into small mid-cap equity utilizing a mutual fund versus a separately managed account.

    On a Motion by Trustee Cox, seconded by Trustee D’Orazio, it was voted unanimously to approve the change to diversify the portfolio further into small mid-cap equity utilizing a mutual fund versus a separately managed account.

  2.  FY18 Current Reforecast – Quarter 3 (AFC-18-06)

    Trustee Paley Nadel informed the board that the FY18 budget will be reduced by half a million dollars and that in the May meeting they will be looking at next fiscal year’s budget with the expectations of future lower enrollments and state funding.

    President Glenn noted the budget that will be presented next month will be less from last year with a very modest student fee increase.   President Glenn encouraged all board members to look at the Planning and Budget blog on the NECC website.

    President Glenn noted that very hard decisions in reducing staff had to be made.   Personnel changes will be ending soon and it is expected that subsequent budgets will not be as impacted as a result of changes we are making this year. A 5% enrollment decline is being projected for next year.  State funding is not dependable.   Working on the capital campaign and seeking to raise $7 million is one way NECC is seeking to become more self-sustaining.

    Trustee Guilmette asked if staff left voluntarily.  President Glenn noted that due to privacy issues they cannot provide names but probably a total of around 20 employees, or approximately 8% of the full-time workforce, were reduced recently through retrenchment or early retirement.

Report of Administration

Prior to starting his report, President Glenn wanted to thank Student Government President Nate Miller and Matt Day for all their work and attending the Board of Trustees meeting.

  1. 1st Quarter 2018 Employee Recognition Award Winners (ADM-3459-040118)

    President Glenn noted that the Employee Recognition Award winner’s names are in the BOT packets.

  2. NECC Capital Campaign (Verbal)

    President Glenn noted that the college is now in the first phase of a capital campaign to raise up to $7 million.   He introduced the logo, Leading into the Future Together (LIFT) that has been designed to promote the campaign.

  3. NECC 2020: Strategic Plan Progress (Verbal)

    President Glenn noted that there is information in the BOT packet on Postsecondary National Policy Institute (PNPI) where congressional and PNPI staff got together on April 4th to discuss Competency Based Education.

  4. Haverhill Campus (Verbal)

    President Glenn noted that spring activities have begun throughout the campus.   A new golf coach was just hired.

  5. Lawrence Campus (Verbal)

    President Glenn informed trustees that there is a new revolving kitchen at the 420 Common Street location, El Encanto, Caribbean style restaurant has started for business.   Dr. Noemi Custodia Lora is part of the Lawrence Public Schools board of transitions.   The board’s role is to transition Lawrence schools back to the city and to hire a new superintendent.  President Glenn also noted that the Early College Principals and Superintendents breakfast was scheduled for the following day, Thursday, April 12th.

  6. 2017 IPEDS Data Feedback Report (ADM-3460-041118)

    President Glenn noted that the annual IPEDS report is in the board packet.   This report collects institution level data on student enrollment, graduation rates, student charges, program completion and finances.  President Glenn pointed out that comparable to 10 other institutions NECC is larger in Hispanic students, has a greater proportion of females and graduation rates are comparable.

    Trustee Cerasuolo-O’Rorke left 6:14p

  7. Mass. State Scholarship Program: $7M Proposal (Verbal)

    President Glenn noted that Governor Baker’s proposed additional $7 million state aid for community college students is now being considered by the House of Representatives for their annual budget proposal.

  8. Mass. Capital Bond Bill: $2Million – NECC General Services Center (Verbal)

    President Glenn noted that Senator O’Connor Ives has earmarked the bill for this project.

  9. Community College Legislative Priorities (ADM-3461-041118)

    President Glenn noted that the FY2019 Budget and Legislative priorities is enclosed in package.   These priorities will help in getting funding to increase community college formula and a couple legislative bond bills that will help provide in-state tuition for all resident students.

  10. Statewide Trustee Conference, Thursday, March 1, 2018 @ Doubletree Hotel, Westborough, MA (Verbal)

    President Glenn thanked the Trustees for attending the Statewide Trustee Conference.   Trustee Forman noted that everyone that attended the conference is in the same situation as NECC.  Trustee Forman also noted that Northern Essex Community College got a big shout-out for their Early College program.

  11. Invitation to Student Academic Awards Ceremony, Tuesday, May 15, 2018 @ 7:00PM in the Sport & Fitness Center (Verbal)

    President Glenn noted to please let Cheryl Goodwin if you will be attending.

  12. Invitation to Commencement, Saturday, May 19, 2018 (ADM-3462-041118)

    President Glenn reminded the Trustees that NECC 2018 Commencement is scheduled for Saturday, May 19th at 11AM at the Haverhill Campus.  Trustees are asked to arrive in D129 in the Sports and Fitness Center by 10:15AM.  President Glenn noted that this year’s Commencement Speaker is Haverhill State Representative Andy Vargas.   Please let Cheryl Goodwin know if you will be attending.

New Business

  1. Motion to approve Revised Hospitality Program (ADM-3463-041118)

    The hospitality program which was reopened in the fall of 2016 has been revised to better prepare students who will graduate with an associate degree and those who would like to transfer to a four-year college or university.

  2. Motion to approve Engineering Science Advanced Manufacturing Program (ADM-3464-041118)

    The engineering science advanced manufacturing program has added an electronics option.

  3. Motion to approve Reinstating Sign Language Interpreter Certificate (ADM-3465-041118)

    The sign language interpreter certificate has been reinstated as the need for American Sign Language interpreters in New England is not being met and in fact continues to grow. NECC currently has the only two-year interpreter-training program offered in the Commonwealth. The hope is that by reinstating the certificate the college will serve a new population of students, grow the program and meet the needs of the deaf community.

  4. Motion to approve Early Childhood Director Certificate Program (ADM-3466-041118)

    A new early childhood director certificate has been designed to prepare individuals, who may already work in the field or are career changers, to enroll in courses to meet the state’s requirements to be director certified.

    On a Motion by Trustee Cox, seconded by Trustee Benning, it was voted unanimously to approve the Revised Hospitality Program, Engineering Science Advanced Manufacturing Program, Reinstating Sign Language Interpreter Certificate and the Early Childhood Director Certificate Program.

  5. Personnel Actions

    1. New Appointments (ADM-3467-041118)

      President Glenn noted that there was (3) new appointments recommended for approval.

      On a Motion by Trustee D’Orazio seconded by Trustee Worden, it was voted unanimously to approve the three (3) new fulltime personnel action as listed in Addendum A.

    2. Sabbatical Leave (ADM3468-041118)

      President Glenn noted that there was 2 sabbatical leaves recommended for approval.

      On a Motion by Trustee Paley-Nadel seconded by Trustee D’Orazio, it was voted unanimously to approve the two (2) sabbatical leaves as listed in Addendum B.

    3. Emeritus (ADM-3468-041118)

      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 Benning, it was voted unanimously to approve four (4) emeritus status recommendations as listed in Addendum A.

  6. Grants

    1. Massachusetts Department of Higher Education: Bridges to College Program (ADM-3470-041118)
    2. Massachusetts Department of Higher Education:  Massachusetts Inclusive Concurrent Enrollment Initiative (MA ICEI) for Students with Disabilities Quality Enhancement Initiative (ADM-3471-041118)
    3. United States Department of Labor. Massasoit Community College: Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Program (TAA/CCCT) (ADM-3472-041118)
    4. Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education:  Adult Basic Education Grant Project Supplemental Funds (ADM-3473-041118)

On a motion by Trustee Cox, seconded by Trustee Forman, it was voted unanimously to approve all 4 grants.

Other Business

  1. End of Year-Dinner and May 9th BOT

    President Glenn reminded the BOT of the end of year trustee dinner, scheduled for June 6.  President Glenn also reminded the BOT of the May 9th meeting at which the budget will be presented


With no other business, Chairman Linehan adjourned the meeting at 6:29 PM.

Get Map and Diretions on Google