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March Trustee Update

Submitted by on March 7, 2016 – 4:36 pm

This fall, Northern Essex will be the first community college in Massachusetts to offer an accelerated associate degree in criminal justice for officers who are working in the field, according to Paul Cavan, coordinator of the college’s CJ program, who presented the educational report at the March 2 meeting of the NECC Board of Trustees.

“This program will address our interest in expanding the criminal justice program and in meeting the needs of our adult learners,” said Cavan.

Cavan collaborated with Joe Solomon, chief of police in Methuen, and Frank Cousins, Essex County sheriff, to create the program, which is primarily offered online.

Those enrolled in the program can receive college credit for relevant criminal justice or military training, take challenge exams to test out of courses; and take competency based courses which allow students to go at their own pace and complete classes more quickly.

“Studies strongly demonstrate the benefits of a college educated police force and this program will put a degree within reach of many Merrimack Valley officers,” said Cavan.

While police officers in Massachusetts are not currently required to have a college degree, the state is reviewing this.  President Glenn is chairing a statewide group that is looking at what minimum college requirement for a police officer in Massachusetts should be and whether graduates of police academies in Massachusetts should receive college credits after successfully graduating from the academy.


Report of the Administration

Contract Negotiations

President Glenn reported that the Massachusetts Community College Council (MCCC) and the Department of Higher Education (DHE) have reached a tentative agreement in their contract negotiations.  The agreement has been approved by the MCCC executive board and will take effect after ratification from members and subject to a review from Jim Peyser, Massachusetts secretary of education.

“I anticipate that we will have a contract,” said Glenn.  “And we are actively seeking funding from the legislature to provide salary increases as soon as possible.”

Haverhill Campus

Glenn reported that he met recently with Haverhill Mayor Jim Fiorentini to discuss having NECC offer a hospitality and culinary arts program in downtown Haverhill in partnership with Whitter Regional Vocational Technical School and Endicott College.

Glenn said they are currently reviewing the costs and potential sources of funding.

“We would like to contribute to the revitalization of downtown Haverhill in a way that makes sound financial sense,” said Glenn.  “If we partner and focus on workforce needs, we should be able to make it work.

Lawrence Campus

The college is phasing out its partnership with Higher Education Partners (HEP) which helped provide resources for iHealth@NECC and the building at 420 Common Street in Lawrence.

Glenn doesn’t believe this will impact the college’s students or programs.

Faculty Sabbatical will Lead to a New First-Year Seminar for Honors Students

Students enrolled in the NECC Commonwealth Honors Program may soon have their own first year seminar course.

Ginger Hurajt, English professor and coordinator of the NECC Commonwealth Honors Program, will be taking a half workload, full salary sabbatical leave during the fall, 2016 and spring, 2017 semesters to do the research necessary to develop the curriculum and a plan for recruiting students.

The course will include a service learning component, during which students will be out in the community working on projects that support regional needs.

“We have a first-year seminar for students, particularly those students who are underprepared for college,” said Lane Glenn.  “This new course will be designed especially for our honors students but the goal will be similar and that is to increase student retention.”

To learn more about the Commonwealth Honors Program, visit the website.

Trustees unanimously approved Hurajt’s sabbatical.


Emeritus Recommended

President Glenn recommended five NECC retirees be awarded the status of emeritus during NECC’s 54th graduation on Saturday, May 21, 2016 at 11 a.m. The Board voted unanimously to present the following individuals with emeritus status: Catherine Dabrowski, professor emerita of nursing; Linda Desjardins, professor emerita of English; Alan Hislop, professor emeritus of English as a Second Language; Nancy Nickerson, professor emerita of mathematics; and Susan Sanders, professor emerita of theater.  .

The awarding of the rank of emeritus is an honor given by the college to those individuals who are particularly deserving.  It may be conferred upon recommendation of the president with the advice of an appropriate committee and by vote of the Board of Trustees.

New Hires

Trustees unanimously approved the appointment of four state appropriated positions: Adam Cutler, assistant director of secondary post-secondary linkages, Department of PK-12 Partnerships; Daniel Guzman, special programs coordinator, Patient Simulation Center (10-month position), Division of Health Professions; Solanyi Munoz, special programs coordinator for dislocated workers, Advising Center; and Joyce Brody, staff associate, Human Resources.