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August 2012 Board Report

Illinois Valley Community College’s two-year, pilot “Running Start” dual credit/dual enrollment program at Marquette Academy – allowing juniors and seniors to earn an associate degree concurrently with their high school diploma – is expected to honor its first graduate this year, IVCC trustees learned Tuesday.

Marquette senior Eliot Kowalski is on track to complete both the associate in arts and associate in science degrees in May, Associate Vice President for Student Services Tracy Morris informed the board. Kowalski is also a three-sport athlete.

Morris said there are six juniors in the program and 14 sophomores have expressed interest. Students can earn up to 51 credits by beginning the program the summer after sophomore year. Qualified seniors are given release time to take online, Ottawa Center or main campus courses after sixth period.

To qualify for the program, students must maintain a 3.0 GPA, score at the college level on Accuplacer tests or submit a qualifying ACT score.

IVCC is researching expansion of Running Start to another pilot school that has indicated interest, Morris said. Across the district, a total of 18 high schools and approximately 800 students participate in dual credit with IVCC.

In her “Building Bridges” presentation, Morris also detailed IVCC’s partnership with Lincoln College-Normal’s (LCN) Accelerated Bridge to Education (ABE) program that allows students to complete their bachelor’s degree more quickly.

LCN’s format, designed for working adults, has students taking one five-week night course at a time and allows them to complete 27 hours per year toward their bachelor’s in business, health services administration, liberal arts or criminal justice.

In addition, capstone programs in entrepreneurship and organizational leadership have been added this year. An open house will be held from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 30 in the counseling center. LCN has a site coordinator in the counseling center 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

In other business, the board approved:

  • A $47.2 million budget for fiscal 2013 including $12.5 million in state funding for the Peter Miller Community Technology Center. The capital dollars represent a quarter of the budget and help account for a 16 percent hike in revenues and a 17 percent increase in expenditures over fiscal 2012. A public hearing was held prior to budget approval.
  • Contracting with Federal Appraisal & Consulting to appraise the assets of Marquis Energy Ethanol Refinery in Hennepin at a cost of $25,000 plus reimbursable expenses.
  • The expenditure of $66,163 in radio advertising contracts from four stations: NRG Media of Ottawa, La Salle County Broadcasting of Oglesby, The Radio Group of Peru and WZOE of Princeton.
  • The purchase of up to $41,000 in fuel from Sapp Bros. of Peru and Flying J of La Salle for the Truck Driver Training program. In addition, the board approved $40,000 in janitorial supplies from Interline Brands of Peoria, $17,443 in elevator maintenance services from ThyssenKrupp Elevator Corp. of Peoria and $34,168 in printer supplies from Smart Group Systems of Richardson, Tex.
  • Property/casualty insurance from Mesirow Financial and workers’ compensation insurance from Kuhl & Company for premiums totaling $316,675.
  • The treasurer’s bond proposal of R.J. Galla through The Hartford for three years at $31,504.

The board learned:

  • A total of 24 graduates participated in the July 25 Licensed Practical Nurse Pinning in the gym.
  • CTC construction continues on schedule. Corcoran said precast panel installation is complete and interior caulking and insulation of the panels is underway. Roofing is also ongoing and masonry work will begin this week. Storm water detention pond excavation and geothermal field work will be done by mid-September.
  • A total of 240 businesses across the district have posted the college’s fall enrollment drive flyers, said Corcoran. Half of the of the18 presentations scheduled district-wide to promote the value of higher education have been made and 28 students have entered into financial aid extension contracts and enrolled in 301 credits.
  • Aug. 17’s New Student Convocation in the gym and picnic in the courtyard was attended by about 375 students. “It was a great effort and I think our staff really set the tone for our new students by showing that not only are we a high quality teaching and learning institution, but also a college that embraces our core values,” said Corcoran.
  • The IVCC Foundation’s sixth annual 21st Century Scholars Society dinner will be at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 30 at Starved Rock. The Society currently has 32 members who commit $500 annually to provide scholarship support to some of IVCC’s most promising second-year students.
  • 2012 IVCC student-athletes John Poulakos of Ottawa (3.7 GPA, tennis) and Lauren Senica of Utica (3.6, softball) are recognized in the latest issue of NJCAA Review for “exemplary academic achievement.”