Welcome to the 2013-2014 Academic Year, a Year of Transition and Student Success (Excerpt from President’s Convocation Speech)
Since this time last year, we have made great strides on our long-term initiatives to support student success, continue with our modernization plans, meet or exceed our accreditation plans and maintain a sustainable operating budget.
In June we honored the outstanding success of our students at commencement and heard Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom’s speech celebrating the diversity of our students. Despite challenges with a budget shortfall, we saw enormous jumps in the number of degrees and certificates awarded in 2013 and, according to the latest numbers available, can celebrate the transfer of more than 400 students to universities in the 2011-2012 academic year. Much of that achievement has been our mobilization around the Student Success Initiative.
There is also good news on the budget front, thanks to thoughtful and inspired work throughout last year. At this time last year we faced a $2.9 million structural deficit. We made some difficult decisions and found new revenue sources, and today we find ourselves in a much more optimistic financial situation.
As we look forward to the new academic year we can expect it will be a year of transition. We will be welcoming many new individuals into new positions on campus. Many of these people are replacing some of the 43 employees who recently retired as a result of the Supplemental Employee Retirement Program offered last year. We are actively recruiting for many other positions.
It is a busy and exciting time on campus and I look forward to the new academic year. Please join me at one of my open forums held periodically at each campus to hear brief college updates and pose questions. The first forums are scheduled for Sept. 5.
Sept. 5, 9:30 a.m.
Sept. 5, 3 p.m.
Modernization Plans on Track
Our modernization efforts have proceeded smoothly. The most obvious change on campus at Kentfield is the physical transformation. We have completed the demolition phase. The Business Center, Administration Building, Olney Hall, Harlan Center, and the taqueria are gone, making way for construction of the new Academic Center. To all of you who have had had to relocate, and for the hard work of the modernization team and the move champs, thank you so much for your effort, patience and cooperation. The transition out of those buildings and the demolition simply couldn’t have gone better.
The process continues. Construction of the new Academic Center began with a bidding process last month. A total of $23.6 million was earmarked for the project and nine construction companies were pre-qualified through a rigorous screening process. Seven companies submitted bids ranging from about $19 million to $21.15 million. Wright Contracting Inc. of Santa Rosa, which submitted the lowest bid at $18,995,000, has done extensive work at Santa Rosa Junior College and Sonoma State University and, in the prequalification process, received strong endorsements. (Santa Rosa Junior College indicated that if it weren’t for the public bid requirements, they would never do business with another construction company other than Wright Contracting.) This week Wright began setting up construction trailers, finalizing schedules and contract documents.
Child Study Center
The Child Study Center is completed and operating. The Center is truly beautiful and a state-of-the-art learning center for both children and our adult students. The Child Study Center supports 30 College of Marin courses in Early Childhood Education, Psychology and Nursing. Many thanks to the modernization team, the Early Childhood faculty and the Child Study Center staff for their tremendous work over the summer getting the center ready for operation.
Three Board of Trustees Seats up for Election
Three trustee positions are up for re-election and there is one challenger. The seats for trustees Diana Conti, Barbara Dolan, and Wanden Treanor, who have served on the Marin Community College District Board since 2009, 1985, and 1996, respectively, expire in December 2013. Brady Bevis, a former Marin County supervisor, is a challenger. I thank all the trustees for their service to the District and encourage everyone to get to know the candidates. Of course, please exercise your civic right and responsibility to vote in the November election.
Accreditation Mid-Term Progress Report
Earlier this year, we were required to respond to nine recommendations made by a visiting accreditation team as well as 26 planning agenda items included in the 2010 Self Study. The draft of our Mid-Term Progress Report is 98 percent complete and available online for your review. The final draft is due in mid-October. I very much encourage you to review the report. I think you will be impressed with what the College has accomplished in recent years. Please direct your feedback to your respective senate presidents.
Before the end of the month, the final draft of the report will be sent to members of the Academic Senate, the Classified Senate, the Associated Students of College of Marin, and the Planning and Resource Allocation Committee. The College Council will receive an electronic link to the final version and the College of Marin Board of Trustees will receive a copy of the final report in September. You can find more information about our accreditation history online.
There have been questions about how City College of San Francisco’s impending loss of accreditation will impact neighboring districts. In all honestly, I’m still studying this issue and, with the Department of Education’s involvement earlier this week, it’s hard to tell where it will end up. Earlier this week, CCSF reported a 13 percent drop in enrollment. It’s possible we could see an increase in our enrollment. We will be working with our Research Department to monitor any impact on matriculation at College of Marin.
Progress Made On 2013-14 Operating Budget
I’m pleased to be able to finally report some positive budget news. After a year of thoughtful and deliberate action to reduce spending, investigate new revenue sources and consider new initiatives, we have faced down a looming structural deficit. At this time last year, we were scheduled to spend $2.9 million more in our operating budget for 2012-2013 than we expected to receive in revenue.
The Board of Trustees adopted a series of Guiding Principles for budget planning to:
Through the shared governance process we took thoughtful and deliberate action to fund $400,000 in new initiatives that emerged through the Program Review process and reduce expenses in a variety of areas by $1.2 million. By the time we presented the 2012-2013 Adopted Budget to the board last August we had reduced the structural deficit to $2.1 million.
Throughout the last fiscal year we monitored our spending and revenue closely and, with a bit of good revenue news, ended the fiscal year with an operating reserve of 8.5 percent and a $1.2 million structural deficit, nearly $900,000 less than we originally projected.
We have continued to take thoughtful and deliberate action and will be presenting the 2013-2014 Adopted Budget to the Board of Trustees next week for approval. We have reduced the structural deficit further to $842,000 with a corresponding 6.5 percent operating reserve.
Things do appear to be looking up. While I am cautiously optimistic, we would be remiss in spending money we don’t yet have. As we look forward, the 2013-2014 budget includes:
Humiston Family Trust Funds Books and Library Network
In 2012, we learned that College of Marin was included in the Thomas Frederic Humiston Family Trust and 10 percent, or about $200,000, was designated for the Emeritus College at College of Marin to be used for the purchase of books of interest to older students. Mr. Humiston, a supporter of the arts and a proponent of community college education, believed in the value of educational access and lifelong learning.
I am very pleased to report that, in its wisdom, the Emeritus Students of College of Marin has generously committed $90,000 of that fund to support the College’s involvement in MariNet, a countywide, online, integrated library network that will benefit all College of Marin students.
Thanks to the Humiston Family Trust and the vision of the emeritus students for this wonderful gift. Thank you also to our three librarians – John Erdman, Sarah Frye, and David Patterson – who helped bring the project to campus.
Those of you who attended commencement in June heard me announce our increasing degree and certificate completion rates, which were 40 and 33 percent higher respectively than a year ago. In 2012, a total of 321 students graduated with a degree or certificate, including 280 associate degrees and 79 certificates. This year, a total of 430 students graduated with a degree or certificate, an overall increase of 34 percent. We awarded 393 associate degrees and 105 certificates. I attribute these incredible increases to our collective focus on Student Success this past couple of years as we have begun to mobilize around the Student Success Initiative.
University Transfer Rates
The numbers are in for university transfers. For the 2011-2012 academic year, a total of 403 students transferred to universities, including 106 students who went to a UC school, 121 transferred to a CSU school and, based on a six-year average, another 176 transferred to an in-state private university or an out-of-state four-year institution.
As we welcome a new academic year I encourage each of us to embrace or perhaps re-embrace the opportunity to focus on the success of our valued students. We each play a unique role in the process. I continue to appreciate all that you do to promote and support the success of our students.
New Food Truck to Cook Up Locally Sourced, Organic Menu at IVC
Beginning this week, food service will be at the Indian Valley Campus by M Woodward Catering via a mobile restaurant – The Retro Wagon Gastro Grub Express. The menu includes delicious comfort food and weekly specials with a modern twist. All food items are locally sourced and organic. Gluten-free bread choices are available on request.
Mondays through Thursdays, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
(end Convocation speech)
Welcome New Employees
Raul E. Beltran, Custodian, Maintenance and Operations
Fernando Berumen, Custodian, Maintenance and Operations
Kristina Combs, Executive Director of Human Resources and Labor Relations
Joseph Della Santina, Instructional Specialist – Library, Learning Resources
Christopher M. Dunkle, Laboratory Technician – Computer Science, Information Technology
Jonathan Eldridge, Vice President of Student Services, Student Development, and Special Services
Caitlin Escobar, Counselor
David Everitt, Instructor, Physics
Nick H. Fara, Instructor, Automotive
Jeffrey Fleisher, Instructional Technology Supervisor, Information Technology
Kim S. Foulger, Production Technician, Drama/Performing Arts
Rebecca E. Freeland, Office Tech, Community Education - Lifelong Learning and International Education
Sarah M. Frye, Librarian
Patrick Garretson, Testing Technician
Adela Hasmandova, Instructional Specialist, Mathematics
Jeaneffer Keener, Custodian, Maintenance and Operations
Derek J. Levy, Dean of Student Success
Andrea Mann, Technician, Transfer and Career Center
Gregory W. Nelson, Interim Vice President of Finance and College Operations
David J. Patterson, Librarian
Kristin Perrone, Counselor
Cari Torres-Benavides, Interim Vice President of Student Learning
Diane M. Traversi, Dean of Enrollment Services
Thank You Marin County Fair Volunteers
The Marin County Fair was a rousing success this summer thanks in part to the generous enthusiastic support of College of Marin volunteers. In addition to the wonderful agricultural exhibits, amazing concerts, the circus, carnival rides and fireworks, volunteers helped promote the fair’s theme: Schools Rule. Special thanks go to: Francisco Avila, Linda Beam, Raul Botello, Arnulfo Cedillo, Nicole Cruz, Paul DaSilva, Maria Garcia, Marie Goff-Tuttle, Phoebe Gonzalez, Christine Li, Deirdre Martinez, Miles McClain, Sara McKinnon, Melinda Molloy, Trustee Stephanie O'Brien, Julie Oyle, Becky Reetz, Mary Sage, Iris Saligman, Edwin Towle, and Sandi Weldon.
August 2013 Data Nugget
The end of academic year 2012-13 denotes the first deadline for accomplishment of the 57 action steps in the College of Marin Strategic Plan 2012-2015. As a reminder, these 57 action steps are related to the following 13 objectives:
Question (fill in the blank):
The College has accomplished __?__ percentage of the Strategic Plan’s 57 action steps for the first year?
Answer: The College has accomplished 95 percent of its 57 action steps for this first year.
Results from the Participatory Governance System
If you question whether committee decisions from COM’s Participatory Governance System produce results, just take a look at the newly released 2012-13 Governance Digest—Governance In Action! This report informs you about the actions implemented at the College during the 2012-2013 academic year that originated from participatory governance system committees. Lots of exciting progress has been made along with significant accomplishments. You can find the report at the Participatory Governance System web page. Scroll down to the “Governance Digest” section.
ASCOM Makes Important Funding Decisions
On July 16, the new ASCOM Board approved fund disbursements for a number of exceptional programs on campus, including Athletics ($5,000), Computer Lab ($2,000), Disabled Students Programs and Services ($1,000), Student Health Center ($3,000), Childcare Center ($2,000), Student Ambassadors Program ($5,000), Library Reserve Books ($6,000) and the Puente Project ($2,000). It is a great start for these young leaders and promises to be a good year for campus activities. Most notable are new funds for the library reserve books for students who are unable to purchase textbooks and the assistance provided to Student Ambassadors for their outreach efforts on behalf of the College of Marin. Good stuff!
ASCOM leadership has also approved funds for aesthetic improvements to the Student Services Building. In the next few weeks, students will see the installation of a new cell phone charging station, matching bulletin boards and brochure racks, new furnishings in the common areas upstairs and banners on the concrete columns in the cafeteria. These updates will help make the building more welcoming to our students. When you see our student leaders on campus, please thank them for their generosity.
Fine Arts Gallery Opens this Fall with Diebenkorn Works on Paper
The artistic mastery of internationally revered artist Richard Diebenkorn will be presented in a premier exhibit at the Fine Arts Gallery beginning Monday, September 30, 2013. The seven-week exhibit features 40 pieces, 38 of which have never been publicly viewed. The selected works on paper portray a richly intimate glimpse into the artist’s evolution spanning more than 40 years. The show, which includes pencil and ink drawings on paper, collages of torn paper and watercolors, is the first show to be produced by the Diebenkorn Foundation.
Chester Arnold, chair of the Fine Arts Department at College of Marin, a painting instructor and artist, curated the exhibit. He sifted through hundreds of drawings, many of which were unframed in flat files in storage at the Foundation. Some of them were created in lean times for the artist on the back of old advertising posters for Mother’s Cookies and Pennzoil.
The Intimate Diebenkorn: Works on Paper 1949–1992
ESCOM Sponsors Petaluma Artists Exhibit
The Emeritus Students of the College of Marin are sponsoring an exhibit of Petaluma artists Muriel Sutcher Knapp and Medley McClary. Knapp studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and received a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Design from the University of Illinois. She worked as an elementary school teacher for 21 years, devoting herself to art upon her retirement. She paints still lifes and portraits in oils and acrylics and works in textiles as well. Her work has been shown regionally and in the Midwest. She is a founding member of the Petaluma Arts Council and a member of the Sebastopol Center of the Arts and the Petaluma Arts Association where she chaired the program committee for seven years. McClary, who spent most of her childhood in Asia, works in various mediums, creating acrylic landscapes on canvas, commissioned portraits in pencil, and clothing design in leather as well as jewelry, and photography. “When I draw a portrait, I search for that particular look or gesture that will give me a glimpse into the subject’s personality and which expresses their unique beauty and grace,” she says. Her portraits have been featured at the Petaluma Gallery One, Apple Box Café, and Copperfield’s Books.
Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
For more information, contact ESCOM at (415) 485-9652.
Women’s Soccer v. Lassen
Men’s Soccer v. DeAnza
Women's Volleyball v. Hartnell
Retired College of Marin Dance Instructor Catherine Sim passed away Aug. 11. She was 74. Cathi began teaching ballet at College of Marin as a part-time instructor in 1977. She was hired full time in the dance discipline in 1990 and coordinated the dance discipline and dance concerts for several years. Cathi also choreographed two works a year, taught ballet and, later, ballroom. After retiring from dance, she worked part time in College of Marin's Tutoring Center until 2004. She was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) about three years ago. She will be missed and remembered often by family, friends, former students, and colleagues.
A celebration of life, dance, friends, and family is planned.
Sunday, September 22, 3 p.m.
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Have a great weekend,
President's Weekly Briefing Web Page