May 2010 Board Meeting Report

Illinois Valley Community College will offer an associate’s degree completion program for Marquette Academy upperclassmen next fall in exchange for Marquette providing janitorial services at the college’s new Ottawa Center.

The IVCC Board approved a “Running Start” pilot program Thursday that will offer Marquette juniors and seniors the opportunity to enroll in up to 38 hours of dual credit courses and earn an Associate’s in Science degree by the time they graduate. An algebra refresher program will also be piloted at Marquette as part of the pact.

Specifically, juniors can enroll in 17 hours of dual credit at the high school while seniors can enroll in 21 hours in the morning at Marquette before being released to attend classes at Ottawa Center or IVCC’s main campus in the afternoon.

In exchange, Marquette will provide custodial services between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m. Monday through Friday at Ottawa Center, 321 W. Main St. 

“This is a big deal,” said trustee Michael Driscoll of Ottawa. “As a college education becomes more and more expensive, this could save families $30,000 to $50,000.”

The board later approved Ottawa Center purchases of $99,921 in furniture, $4,415 in equipment for the CNA lab and $14,392 for a security surveillance system. The board also authorized spending up to $10,000 for exterior and interior signage.

“This evening brings to closure the major issues involving Ottawa Center,” said IVCC President Jerry Corcoran. “Enrollment is strong, construction is on schedule and the custodial issue has been resolved by our agreement with Marquette. I couldn’t be more pleased with how well the project is progressing.”

Corcoran shared positive news regarding overall enrollment. An end-of-spring semester report revealed a 16 percent spike in credit hours over the previous year, a 6 percent headcount increase and a 14 percent rise in the number of students aged 31-40.

The board also approved:

  • The $24,182 bid of UC Paving of Peru for crack filling and seal coating the main entrance turnaround drive and the $9,416 bid of Springfield Electric of Peru for parking lot and roadway lighting control.
  • Seeking bids for the replacement of the water line between the main campus and gym at an estimated cost of $58,000. The existing line broke twice the past year.
  • The Project Design Development phases for the Community Technology Center and authorized Basalay, Cary & Alstadt Architects to proceed with CTC Construction Documents.
  • Expending approximately $1.6 million in Protection Health and Safety funds for chemistry lab renovations in the summer of 2011 (about $1.2 million), moving the Safety Services office into lower level Room C103 and upgrading the fire alarm system throughout main campus.
  • The resignation of Dr. Manuel Gomez, Dean of Humanities, Fine Arts and Social Sciences, who has been named Director of Education and Training for the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.
  • The resignation of Juletta Patrick, Dean of Student Development, who has been named Assistant Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs at McHenry County College in Crystal Lake.
  • The hiring of Robert Mattson as director of institutional research. Mattson had been the college’s research analyst under IVCC’s first IR director, Cathy Bangert, who retired this spring.
  • New full-time teaching positions in English and CNA instruction to address growing enrollments.
  • A 37-hour paramedic certificate program to meet the demand for advanced training and  “fast-track” students to licensure.
  • The Information Technology strategic plan for fiscal 2011. The plan’s equipment and software purchases are contingent on funding availability.
  • A “memorandum of understanding” regarding early childhood education services  between IVCC, the City of La Salle, La Salle Elementary District 122, Youth Service Bureau of Illinois Valley and Tri-County Opportunities Council Head Start. “It is critical, particularly in a time of reduced funding, that all parties involved in serving the various needs of families with young children coordinate their efforts, avoid duplication and seek efficiencies,” said Dr. Rick Pearce, Vice President for Learning and Student Development.
  • A wind turbine feasibility study with Ameresco that will, among other things, result in construction of a 50-meter tower south of the college barns beginning July 8. A $30,000 grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation will cover 75 percent of the $40,000 study.

The board also learned Dawn Watson has been hired as an administrative assistant in the Business Services and Finance office, Merrilee Biggs as payroll and benefits coordinator, Sheri Mitchum as personal computing/audio-visual specialist, and Eric Pinter as men’s baseball coach.