ACCJC/WASC Removes Warning Sanction
Visiting Team Chair Says College of Marin Was Well Prepared
I am delighted to share with you that in a letter received on Tuesday, February 12, 2013, Dr. Barbara A. Beno, president of the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges/Western Association of Schools and Colleges (ACCJC/WASC), wrote that the Commission took action to remove College of Marin from Warning.
This is great news for the College and a testament to the continuing hard work and dedication of faculty, staff, students and our Board of Trustees to take very seriously the Commission’s accrediting standards and its recommendations.
ACCJC/WASC’s Team Chair for the College’s follow-up visit, Dr. Jose Ortiz, indicated in his final report to the Commission that College of Marin has made significant progress in all areas and in several areas has exceeded expectations.
Ensuring student success is one of the Commission’s greatest concerns and accreditation is now linked with the successful implementation of effective Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs). College of Marin received high marks in this area. Faculty and staff in particular played a key role in successfully identifying and assessing SLOs for all courses, programs, and services throughout the College.
The complete ACCJC/WASC Follow-Up Report is available online at http://www.marin.edu/com/ODP/Accreditation.htmFree Tax Preparation Services Are Available at the Single Stop Office
COM’s Single Stop Office offers free tax preparation, financial counseling, legal advice, and benefits screenings to COM students, faculty, and staff. Free tax preparation services are available now through April at the Single Stop Office.
The goal of Single Stop is to provide students with additional resources to help increase retention and graduation rates. Single Stop also offers benefit screenings and application assistance, which can give students access to food services (CalFresh), low cost or free health insurance (Medi-Cal, CMSP and Healthy Families), child care services, affordable housing, CalWORKs, and cash aid programs (general assistance).
For more information about tax preparation or other services, please contact Edwin Towle, M.S., Single Stop Coordinator at the Student Services Center, Room. 124, call ext. 7761, or email Edwin.Towle@marin.edu
Open Forums with the Superintendent/President
Please join me for one of two open forums scheduled on Tuesday, February 26. Faculty, staff and students are encouraged to attend for an open discussion of their ideas and items of interest.
College of Marin Spring Enrollment
On Monday College of Marin’s Planning, Research, and Institutional Effectiveness Office released enrollment figures for the spring 2013 semester. There are 6,620 students enrolled for spring 2013 compared to 7,337 students that enrolled in the spring 2012 semester; a decrease of about nine percent. This semester’s average student load increased to 7.4 credits compared to 7.2 credits for spring 2012.
The recent enrollment decline at College of Marin follows a statewide trend among California community colleges that has been largely attributed to budget cuts resulting in fewer course offerings, fee increases, and changes in federal financial aid regulations.
While a California community college education continues to be an excellent value when compared to universities, enrollment fees have gone up from $20 per unit in 2008-09 to $46 per unit in 2012-13—an astounding 130 percent increase in just five years.
As a result of these significant fee increases, the availability of financial aid plays an increasingly significant role in enrollment at College of Marin. According to Financial Aid Director David Cook, more College of Marin students are applying for financial aid now than at any other time in the college’s history.
Even while demand for financial aid has increased exponentially at College of Marin, new federal financial aid regulations are making it harder for students to qualify. Students must make good academic progress in order to continue receiving financial aid. Approximately 586 College of Marin students that were enrolled in fall 2012 credit classes have been denied financial aid for spring 2013 because of poor academic performance.
Another factor contributing to lower enrollment is fewer classes. Budget cuts at College of Marin have resulted in a reduction of 149 units from the spring credit schedule since spring 2010. A total of 56 units were cut from the spring 2013 credit class schedule compared to spring 2012. Similar reductions have been made to fall course schedules beginning in fall 2010 when the college offered a high of 2,563 units compared with fall 2012 when only 2,456 units were offered. (An average class is made up of three units and enrolls about 25 students per class.)
Spring 2013 Welcome Week
College of Marin will host its spring 2013 Welcome Week February 19 through 21 at the Kentfield Campus and February 19 and 20 at the Indian Valley Campus. Vendors will be on site at both campuses with special offers for students, staff, and faculty. Featured vendors include: The Marin Independent Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, Comcast, Verizon, Redwood Credit Union, Riley’s Art Supplies, Gideon Bible, Blue Cross, Allstate, KMEL, Live 105, Lobo’s Ice Cream, Marin Education Fund, Union Bank, Citibank, Wells Fargo, and many wonderful art and jewelry vendors. Make sure to take a break and join in the festivities. For further information, please call Vickie Lamke in the Student Affairs Office at (415) 485-9376.
Opening Night Gala Performance of Big River - Limited Tickets Available
Directed by James Dunn
Reserve your tickets today for a gala event celebrating the dedication of the James Dunn Theatre and 80th birthday party for James Dunn. Even though the pre-show talk and reception have sold out, gala tickets are still available for the opening night performance and post-show party.
Opening Night Performance and Post-show Party–$40
The Marin County Premier of Big River is presented by special arrangement with Rodgers & Hammerstein, Inc. As American as apple pie, Big River recently played to sold out houses at TheatreWorks in Palo Alto. Based on The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain, this show is everyone’s favorite bad boy adventure story. Tom Sawyer, The Duke, The King, and all the other wonderful characters from Twain’s masterpiece come to life as Huck Finn and Jim, the runaway slave, raft their way down the Big Muddy—the mighty Mississippi River. With a musical score reminiscent of the music of preslavery days in Missouri, this show will be a wonderful outing for the entire family.
Tickets are limited, RSVP recommended. All proceeds will benefit College of Marin Performing Arts Programs. Contact the box office at (415) 485-9385 for tickets and information.
Wednesday, February 27, 11:10 a.m.
Linda Noble Brown, instructor of the Advanced Voice class at College of Marin, and her students, would like to invite everyone to a recital of some of their favorite songs. Each one of the singers has chosen their own song within the parameters of classic vocal literature. Enjoy the entertainment of art songs by Rachmaninoff, Satie, Wolf, Bernstein, Quilter and more, with arias by Offenbach, Bizet, Puccini, Verdi and Bellini. A couple songs from musical theatre will round off the program.
Flu Shots Available at a Reduced Cost
The College of Marin Health Center will be offering seasonal flu shots to students and faculty at both the Kentfield and Indian Valley Campuses.
Women’s Basketball vs. Contra Costa
I regret to inform you of the recent passing of a former colleague and friend, Kent Lowney. Kent was hired as the director of personnel at the College of Marin on July 1, 1981. He retired from the College in 2003.
Those who knew Kent, remember him as a friendly and compassionate individual with an open door policy. He was quite a character, had a great sense of humor and loved to have a good time. His fondness of nature was apparent. He was always collecting the yellowing leaves of the gingko trees on campus and feeding peanuts to the blue jays from his window. Kent was also a fanatic lover of planes and the space program, and closed the office one day to take his staff to see the Blue Angels practice flight! Predeceased by his beautiful wife Madeleine, Kent is survived by his loving children Chrissie and Patrick (Monica) and grandsons Sean and Tyler. No services are planned.
President's Weekly Briefing Web Page