Northern Essex Community College Board of Trustees
Minutes of Meeting (Official) – November 1, 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 LC-301 at 5:00 pm.
Ms. Paley Nadel
Also Present: President Glenn
Call to Order
Chairman Linehan called the meeting to order at 5:07PM.
Approval of Minutes
On a Motion by Trustee Paley Nadel, seconded by Trustee D’Orazio, it was voted unanimously to approve the October 4, 2017 minutes as presented.
There was none.
There was none.
A Report on NECC Library Physical and Digital Archives (ADM-3421-110117)
President Glenn introduced Mr. Michael Hearn, Director of Libraries who provided a brief report to the Board regarding the physical and digital archives of the NECC library. Mr. Hearn thanked the board for the opportunity to provide an update on the college’s efforts over the past two years to grow their collection of historical materials and to make them digitally accessible to anyone online. Mr. Hearn noted that as result of the recent Spurk Renovation and the repurposing of spaces, there was an opportunity to sort through many items and photos that surfaced during that process and that were important in telling the story of the college and its impact on the community. Over 3,500 pictures and other college documents were scanned and converted that into the college’s digital archives. The NOBLE library (of which NECC is a part) has a page for NECC within it. Mr. Hearn provided a brief review of the collections available in NOBLE which were digitized by the Boston Public Library. He noted that historical materials such as yearbooks, commencement programs, and catalogs are all available for everyone to see. While paper copies of all of these materials are still available, the digitized copies provide access to everyone, both locally and across the world. Mr. Hearn also explained that a series of brief college videos were also available on the site. He encouraged the trustees to review the sight by going to NECC”s webpage and clicking on the library link.
With no questions, Chairman Linehan and President Glenn thanked Mr. Hearn for his report to the Board.
Report of Board Committees
There was none.
Report of Administration
President Glenn spoke briefly about the following items:
4th Quarter Employee Recognition Awards Winners (ADM-3422-110117)
President Glenn provided a brief overview of the Employee Performance Recognition Award recipients and noted that the employees were very deserving of this honor. The recipients were: Chris Amaru, Sarah Cominskey, and Michael Kolotila. The Board congratulated the recipients.
NECC 2020: Strategic Plan Progress Update (Verbal)
President Glenn provided a brief update on the college’s Strategic Plan and how to access the plan and its goals on the college’s website. President Glenn noted that while the plan is quite small, it is a living and dynamic document. The plan changes and adjusts as the college does and was intentionally written with broad goals. Active goal teams are constantly updating their work, and information on the goals and teams can be found on the college’s strategic planning website. As President Glenn pointed out, anyone (at any time) can click on one of the goal team links to see what they are working on and to receive updates from the team. President Glenn noted that the college’s strategic plan is a very public and transparent document, and it shows progress, and how that progress was done.
Haverhill Campus Update (Verbal)
President Glenn noted that the college’s first Homecoming celebration was held on October 14th at the Haverhill Campus. Approximately 300 people attended the event which included baseball games, musical performances, food and entertainment. The chief architect of the event was Vice President of Administration and Finance, Mike McCarthy who is now responsible for the college’s Athletics. Mr. McCarthy has already started the planning for an expanded event next year which will include the college’s 5K road race, additional athletic and spirit events, and will possibly incorporate food trucks.
Also, President Glenn noted the recent open house at Harbor Place for UMass Lowell. NECC partners on degree completion programs with UML, and we hope to continue to help promote that site going forward and building that completion pipeline for our students.
Lawrence Campus Update (Verbal)
President Glenn noted that NECC has one of the strongest Sleep Technician programs in the northeast. The industry continues to change and evolve, and Northern Essex continues to keep abreast of those changes. Currently, NECC is partnering with the Neurocare Center for Sleep at Lawrence General Hospital.
President Glenn also notified Trustees that NECC and Cambridge College will be hosting a partnership celebration event on December 7th where both institutions will sign a memorandum of agreement for the partnership. Cambridge College is in the process of rebuilding their brand, and NECC will be partnering with them on selected programs. President Glenn invited trustees to attend the event, and noted that more information will be coming in the next few weeks regarding the exact time and location.
Statewide Framework for Mass. Public Higher Education Facilities Capital Planning Feasibility Study (ADM-3423-110117)
President Glenn noted that this report comes from the Executive Office of Education. A little over a year ago, Secretary of Education Jim Peyser and Commissioner of Higher Education Carlos Santiago met with higher education leaders and noted that a limited amount of resources would be available for capital projects in the next few years. There is a strong need for higher education institutions to better maintain the buildings they already have in place and less of a need for new construction. President Glenn reminded trustees that the college does not own the buildings as they are properties of the Commonwealth. The funding for maintaining those buildings has changed, and this report helps to figure out how to allocate money across the state. The report also looked at programming at institutions and provides highlights on what factors drive the decision making on spending as well as fund raising. While enrollment is a challenge across the country, building conditions continue to deteriorate because they have not been adequately maintained. Most colleges have adequate space, but need the funding for building maintenance and upgrades. This capital planning report provides attention to those areas as the state turns its focus to deferred maintenance.
In conclusion, President Glenn noted that Vice President of Administration and Finance Mike McCarthy is currently sitting on a statewide peer review committee which is looking at the needs for each campus. The work of the committees will be completed soon and as more information becomes available, President Glenn noted that he will keep the Trustee apprised.
Capital Campaign Feasibility Study (Verbal)
President Glenn noted that the capital campaign consultant has recently produced a draft report which he will be sharing with trustees once he and members of the college’s foundation board have had a chance to review. Dr. Glenn noted that it is important to know if the community supports the efforts outlined in the draft campaign such as deferred maintenance and athletic facilities, and this draft report will help provide that initial data.
In the meantime, President Glenn noted that it will be important to have full support of the trustees as this project progresses. As he explained, from time to time, the college needs advocacy around particular projects, and trustees can be very helpful in that arena. President Glenn noted that the college is also currently holding budget forums to keep the community apprised of the future budget process and outlook as we enter the FY19 budget development season. Trustee support and advocacy during the budget process and approval each year is critical particularly as we try to constrain increase costs to students.
In closing, President Glenn reminded trustees that the budget process can be highly politicized. New construction funding for the El Hefni building happened as result of a billion dollar bond bill during Patrick administration. The community colleges received less than 20% of the bond bill funding that year, while the UMass system had an advantage with “shovel ready” projects readily available as the result of having in-house architects and engineers prepared in advance. The Strategic Framework consultants have helped colleges look at the system as a whole, and the peer review piece is critical to the full review. Each college has been asked to submit a few items of need into what is becoming a very competitive process. The review should be complete by December 22nd, and final drafts will be developed with the goal of full transparency so leaders across the higher education system know why certain projects have received the funding. President Glenn noted that he’ll keep trustees apprised as the process progresses.
- Personnel Actions
- New Appointments (ADM-3424-110117)
President Glenn noted that there were three new employees for approval. One is for a coordinator and assistant professor for our upcoming Culinary Program, as well as a coordinator for our Patient Simulation Center and an Academic Counselor.
On a Motion by Trustee Cox, seconded by Trustee D’Orazio, it was voted unanimously to approve three (3) full-time personnel actions as listed in Addendum A.
- New Appointments (ADM-3424-110117)
Hotel in Westborough. More information on the schedule and registration will be emailed to trustees as soon as it becomes available. He encouraged all Board members to attend.
Also, Chairman Linehan noted that the Trustees normally meet after the December meeting for a Holiday dinner. The dinner will be held on Wednesday, December 6th at 6:30PM at Joseph’s Trattoria in Ward Hill.
With no other business, Chairman Linehan adjourned the meeting at 5:58 PM.