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Presidential Report August 21, 2007
August 21, 2007
Welcome New Board Members
Please join me in welcoming two new Trustees - Charles "Chick" Gregg and Scott Howat - who have each been appointed by the Governor to four-year terms. Chick is no stranger to the College, having served as chairman of our SCC Foundation several years ago and also having been a very generous scholarship donor to SCC. Chick recently retired from his executive position with Meritage Homes and can now devote his "full-time" to SCC!
Scott Howat is the government / legislative liaison for Orange County Public Schools. He is a native of this area with degrees from Rollins College and UCF. Scott begins his term on the Board already knowing most of our legislators and how to "navigate" Tallahassee. Both Scott and Chick are powerful additions to our already well-connected Board.
Rick Lee and Verdell Pugh-Horne are rolling off our Board, having each served for eight years as tireless advocates for our College. Next time you see Rick or Verdell, please thank them for all they have done for SCC!
We still don't know what additional budget challenges lay ahead for the Community College System. The best scenario would be for the Legislature, in their Special Session in September, to hold community colleges harmless because of the role that we play as economic training engines for our communities. There is also talk of allowing us to charge the 5% in additional tuition beginning in January. It looks like we will probably have to wait until October 5th to learn what measures the State intends to enact. However, in the meantime, we are encouraged by a healthy enrollment increase. We are working with an internal committee composed of the Deans, VPs, Faculty Senate President and others who are considering where additional cuts could be made.
With classes beginning Wednesday, it appears that we may indeed be within reach of our enrollment goals for the Fall Term. As of this morning, collegewide enrollment is up in the double digits over last Fall. The final figures won't be known until several weeks after Add / Drop when we certify our numbers to the State. In the meantime, I'd like to thank Dr. Henningsen and his Student Success Services Team for all the hard work they've done to recruit, register, and find seats for our students this Fall!! Special thanks to our faculty for accepting more students into their classes and to the Department Heads for finding more adjuncts.
Heathrow Center "Open House" and Dedication
If you haven't seen this incredible facility, and want a pre-Dedication preview, please join us next Monday, August 27th, from 3 - 4:30, for a special OPEN HOUSE just for SCC employees and retirees. Then on Wednesday, August 29, beginning at 9:30 a.m., we will hold our formal dedication ceremony, hosted by Florida Business Interiors (FBI). Special thanks to Jim and Lisa Greer for convincing Florida's Lt. Governor to be our featured speaker.
Southern Association of Colleges & Schools (SACS) Accreditation
I am pleased to announce that we have received full accreditation from SACS for the Altamonte Springs Campus. Many thanks to Suzanne Tesinsky and the staff who worked hard on this endeavor.
First Monday Article
The August edition of the Orlando Chamber of Commerce's publication, First Monday, contains a great article on the regional community colleges featuring our Oviedo Campus. The article addresses how Florida's community colleges are continuing to deliver needed programs and services despite the uneven legislative funding and mounting student enrollment.
Joint Meeting with SCC District Board of Trustees and The Seminole County Commission
SCC's Trustees will hold a joint meeting with the Seminole County Commission at the Seminole County Services Building, 1101 East First Street, Sanford, on Tuesday, August 28, from 4-6 p.m., in the Commission Board Room. The main presenters will be your Chairman, Chris Dorworth, and me. This will be a first for us and, hopefully, the full Board will be able to attend. We will be providing you with an agenda in the near future.
Council of Local Governments in Seminole County (CALNO)
SCC will host the CALNO meeting on September 5, in the Automotive Building Showroom, at 6:30 p.m. Please feel free to join us.
Meetings with Representatives Cannon and Gardiner
House of Representatives members, Andy Gardiner and Dean Cannon, have agreed to tour our new Heathrow Center for Economic Development on September 6 (10:30 a.m.) and October 8 (10:30 a.m.), respectively. If you can join us, please let Linda know.
Domestic Partner Insurance Coverage
At your place, you have a memorandum from Joe Sarnovsky related to insurance coverage for domestic partners. The Community College System Council of Presidents passed a resolution at their July meeting authorizing the Community College Insurance Consortium to include domestic partner coverage - either opposite sex or same sex partners - in the health plan. Our internal Insurance Benefits Committee has been asked to consider this and provide the administration with their recommendation. This is just to advise the Board of the discussion that is taking place.
Community College Funding Presentation to House and Senate Staff and the Lt. Governor and Governor's Budget and Policy Staff
Last week, a contingent of the community college presidents were privileged to meet with House and Senate Staff, the Lt. Governor and the Governor's Office Policy and Budget Staff to state our case for community college funding. I would like to walk you through a few of the slides from the presentation so that you will be better prepared for some "elevator" speeches on the "case for community colleges."
Our plan has been to hold a Board Workshop once the Board was complete. I would like to know your pleasure about the time of day, length of the workshop, topics to be included and whether you would like to have an external facilitator.
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