June 2021 Meeting Minutes

June 2021 Meeting Minutes

Board of Trustees

June 10, 2021

The North Arkansas College Board of Trustees met in regular session on Thursday, 10, June in JPH conference center. Chair Miller called the meeting to order at 3:00 p.m. Trustees Debbie Johnson, Linda Pledger, Pam Henry, Chris McNew, Kevin Cheri, R.G. Earnest, and Sarah Newman were present.

North Arkansas College personnel attending included Richard Stipe, Micki Somers, Ricci Dillon, Dr. Josephine Kershaw, Kris Greening, Don Sugg, Tavonda Brown, Dr. Rodney Arnold, Rick Massengale, Brandon Cone, and Dr. Laura Berry.


Approval of Agenda

Chair Miller asked if there were any changes to the agenda as presented. There being none a motion was made, unanimously approved.


Regular Reports

Finance Report—Richard Stipe shared E&G and Auxiliary budget activities through May 2021.

In the E&G fund, Richard Stipe noted the operating budget revenue was at $14,120,369 and 103.6% of the budget for this year. Richard stated the two main reasons for the revenue being above budget; the plan was to have low enrollment this year because this budget was planned after the pandemic, however the enrollment was slightly above budget. Secondly, state funding was given that was not planned. Year-to-date expenditures was at $12,785,152 and 93% of the budget. Richard stated expenditures are slightly higher than budget. Richard said the Operating budget will end in a positive for the year.

Auxiliary: Revenue for year-to-date was at $80, 399 and Expenditures was at $126,986.  Auxiliary net operating gain year-to-date totaled $98,481. Richard said the results for the fiscal year will be reported in September.

Foundation Report- Dr. Rodney Arnold shared the Foundation finances with the board showing as of May 2021, the net assets were at $9,130,692 and the revenue at $1,327,288. Dr. Arnold stated the Foundation had a good year financially.

During the June Foundation meeting, new officers and members were appointed. New members are Bill Magness, Mike Masterson, and Layne Ragsdale. New Officers for 2021/2022: Melanie Savells as President, Anne Hubbard as Vice President, and Cathy Brandt as Secretary.

Dr. Arnold gave an update on the investment committee that included to hold on current 60/40 investment ratio. This is 60% of invested assets that will remain in equities and stock market and 40% will be invested in fixed income instruments, such as, bonds and CDs. The Foundation also selling one of the four properties owned by the Foundation. The Newton County property is currently pending sale. Endowed Chairs for 2021/22 have been selected with a total of $40,063 through 15 chairs. Dr. Arnold finished his report with an update on the Campus Housing. He stated they are currently in the process of talking with the architects are finalizing their final drawings and working with the general contractor as they are finalizing their formal bid to the Foundation to move with the project. The construction loan with Cornerstone Bank and they are waiting on the formal bid from the general contractor to move to the next step.

Physical Plant Report- Kevin Somers updated the Board with completed and remaining projects. Some projects are south campus roof replacement, art room patio remodel, remodel of classrooms, science building HVAC upgrade, completion the building is now balanced and meets ASHRAE safety standards for Chemistry.  Other projects, all three floors of JPH repairs, remodel of the entire gym. Upcoming projects are adding stairs, barrier, and seating at baseball field, New E-sports rooms, replacement of all ceiling tiles in main hallway on south campus and complete sanitation of all HVAC units and ducts, new ADA elevator by grill area, new blinds and upgrade to JPH conference center, and new gutters.

President Search Advisory Committee Report- Kris Greening stated the College received 32 applications The committee through out the month have worked hard to read all application materials and had a meeting on June 7, 2021 to discuss the information. The committee compiled and gave access to the Board to review and select the first round of interviews. She stated the Board should all have access to all the information on the applicants. After the Board selects the first round of candidates, the advisory committee will then setup the screening interviews.

Chair Scott Miller stated a special board meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, June 16, 2021 to discuss the findings. Trustee R.G. Earnest strongly encouraged all board members to review all applications. He stated the advisory committee has evaluated each candidate and rated factors and totaled. He asked the board members to look beyond the rated numbers and read the comments from the advisory committee meeting. He reminded the board members once the first-round candidates are selected; the advisory committee will have the recorded interviews for the board to review.

President’s Report—Don Sugg started the report with a photo of his grandson, Rex James. He gave compliments to Kevin Somers, Dr. Rodney Arnold, Dr. Rick Massengale, and Kris Greening for all their accomplishments within their departments. Don stated the stated the enrollment as of June 4, 2021 was trending upward.  Student Semester Credit Hours have increased considerably from this time last year, reaching about 54% of the budget from this time last year. The Headcount has increased by about 75 students. Don gave special thanks to the finance department, IT department, and the department heads for the audit exit conference with the Arkansas Legislative. The audit concerning the June 30, 2020 to which the audit indicated no preliminary report findings or exceptions. The final report is expected in July 2021.

Don gave a special thanks to Sherry Gibbany, Medical Laboratory Technology Program Director, for the accreditation for a period of ten years. North Arkansas College’s Spring 2021 Dean’s list had 272 students: 194 full-time and 78 part-time students. Northark Athletics FY 2020-2021 had 17 Academic All-Americans: six baseball athletes, four women’s softball athletes, three men’s basketball athletes, and four women basketball athletes. The Women in Manufacturing meet and greet, an effort to support and encourage women in the technical programs. Don reported the Center of Robotics and Manufacturing Innovation has been recommended for potential state funding of $3 million. The Arkansas Legislative Council hearing is scheduled for June 15, 2021. He gave appreciated for the area legislators for their support of the project. North Arkansas College’s Board chair, Scott Miller, BCEDC Chair Craig Campbell, and Don Sugg will attend the Arkansas Legislative Council Hearing.  Don presented the tentative anticipated funding of the building with the totaling tentative anticipated funding of $8,043,750. He ended the report with the partnership with the Arkansas Economic Development Commission and Arkansas Office of Skill Development in the plans to offer the Future Fit program through a grant reimbursement arrangement. The program is tended to ease the workforce shortage and place qualified individuals directly into well-paying jobs with participating companies throughout the region. Participants for Future Fit will complete a training program that will prepare them for entry-level employment with these companies. The course will take approximately 120 hours of combined hands-on and on-line training for the basic skills needed to be successful in a manufacturing position.

Don ended his report with an employee spotlight to Charla Jennings. Charla graduated North Arkansas College in 1982 and started work study employment with North Arkansas College in May 1980 with regular employment in June 1981. Charla has completed 41 years of continuous Northark employment and is still going. She serves on numerous standing and ad-hoc college committees, volunteers for most all special college events, and is recognized as one of the key course code and course curriculum gurus. Charla is currently Registrar/Director of Admissions.


Consent Agenda

The Consent Agenda included the May Regular Meeting Minutes, Board Travel Expense Resolution, Employee Contract Renewal, new position: (grant- funded) Outdoor Power Equipment Instructor, and re-placement position: Head Baseball Coach. , replacement position: Life Science Instructor, and Provisional (grant-funded) Position Continuation Request.  Chair Miller asked for a motion to approve the Consent Agenda. A motion was made by Trustee Cherie seconded by Trustee Johnson, and unanimously approved.


Monitoring Report

Dr. Rick Massengale presented the Enhance diverse experiences report. Dr. Massengale reported the Study Abroad and Community College Survey of Student Engagement were cancelled. Summer I had 44 online students, 26 face to face, and 2 online live. Summer II had 7 online, 4 face to face, and 5 online-live giving a total of 51 online, 30 face to face, and 5 online-live. Dr. Massengale gave an overview of the general learning outcome #5 where students will be able to discuss issues of a diverse global society.  He stated that Fall 2019-Fall 2020 had an increase of 1.18% and Spring 2020- Fall 2020 had a decrease of 0.73%. He reported the student demographics for Fall enrollment counts and percentage by race/ethnicity, with an increase from Fall 2016 to Fall 2020 in all minority groups by 5.3%. Community and Continuing Education enrollment for 2020-2021 was at 825. He commented the enrollment was trending very well considering the campus short time since the campus opened back up. 

Dr. Massengale listed the new programs and initiatives introduced in 2020-2021; Associate of Science Data Science, Associate of Science Cyber Security, Technical Certificate- Programming, Redesigned Information Technology Degrees, Reengineered Business Administration Degrees, New partnership with UAMS and Medical Lab Tech program, and new partnership with Huntsville Public Schools and St. Paul Schools. Department of Labor apprenticeship in Turf Management has eight apprentices enrolled and completing year one. Five new staring in Fall are Big Cedar, Pinnacle Country Club, Rogers, Benton Parks and Recreation, and Twin Lakes Golf Course in Mountain Home, AR.  Outdoor Powersport/small engine, Industrial Maintenance Mechanic, and TC in Turf Management have been approved by the Department of Labor to begin Fall 2021. Future Fit Initiative and Ready for Life Initiative are new programs in the works for 2021-2022. Additional programs in the works for 2021-2022: Degrees and Certificates in Broadcasting, Sports management, and Construction management. Workforce/Training consist of Sports officiating, Arkansas Activities Association, and Missouri State High School Activities Association. Northark has added 14 Zoom rooms, stocked ready to use Zoom sticks for Ad-Hoc Zooming, established Northark GO, and have four modes of delivery: face to face, online, live online, and hybrid. 

Dr. Massengale ended his report with our four-year school contracts since April 2021; University of Arkansas Walton School of Business, University of Arkansas Bumpers School of Agriculture, University of Arkansas Medical Sciences, Drury University & Drury Go, Arkansas Tech University, University of Central Arkansas, Arkansas State University, and University o Arkansas Fort Smith .


Trustee Newman moved to adjourn the meeting. Trustee McNew seconded the motion, which was unanimously approved.