ACCC summer enrollment up

By RICHARD LUKEN
Register Reporter

A grant program that helps pay for Allen Countians to attend Allen County Community College ap-pears already to have lifted the school’s enrollment.
Randy Weber, dean of student affairs, told ACCC trustees Thursday that the college’s summer enrollment is up 16.4 percent. Weber also anticipated a fall enrollment increase of about 7 percent.
The numbers are even more impressive for on-campus schooling during the summer session. As of Thursday, 105 new students were attending ACCC, compared to the summer 2008 term. Of those, 104 were students at the Iola campus.
Weber said the enrollment spike can be attributed in part to the newly established Allen County Grant program, in which all who live in the county can receive up to $400 per term to attend ACCC.
Weber also noted that with enrollment up, so is the need for student housing. All of the college’s dormitories and apartment facilities look to be at full capacity for the fall.
“We’re currently looking for help from the community, trying to find people who have rooms to rent,” Weber told the Register.

TRUSTEES agreed to use a mediator to resolve their ongoing dispute with Custom Energy, which installed upgraded climate control and lighting systems at the Iola campus in 2006.
The college noted that the new systems have yet to mean lower utility bills, which was guaranteed by the company.
Custom Energy, meanwhile, insists it has met the terms of its agreements, and that the system has not saved money because of operator errors.
Software engineers from Siemens Building Technologies of Lenexa, the firm that developed the software for the energy system’s controls, are in the process of recommissioning the system to ensure its controls are functioning properly.
When that process is complete, trustees directed ACCC President John Masterson and Steve Troxel, vice president for finance and operations, to set up a mediation process through the Kansas Corporation Commission.

A NEW computer lab will be equipped with 22 computers purchased from Dell Computer for $14,124. The Dell bid was the lowest of six that met the college’s specifications.
Trustees also purchased a spectrometer, an optical instrument used to measure properties of light, for the school’s newly refurbished chemistry lab. Trustees approved a bid from Fisher Scientific Company LLC of Houston, which had the higher of two bids received. The Fisher bid was more appealing than a $10,665 bid from Daigger Lab Equipment and Supplies of Vernon Hills, Ill., trustees said, because the Fisher bid included technical support services.
Trustees also purchased a copy machine from Copy Products, Inc., for $3,252, the lowest of four bids received.

MASTERSON briefed trustees on the school’s staff vacancies for the 2009-10 academic year.
The college must replace its academic and international student adviser; administrative assistant for concurrent enrollment; and assistant coaches for women’s basketball, cross country/track, volleyball and cheer/dance teams.
Trustees also discussed new positions for the upcoming school year, including an early childhood education specialist and construction and maintenance technology specialists. The childhood education specialist position will be funded over the next three years with vocational program funds through the Carl D. Perkins Grant. The construction and maintenance position is funded over the next three years through the Kansas Department of Commerce’s Workforce Solutions Grant.
Trustees noted that Ryan Bilderback — ACCC’s director of adult education, Title III programs and Academic Quality Involvement Program (AQIP) — will have a new role when his contract expires Sept. 30. Then, Bilderback will be director of adult education and AQIP and a grant writer for the college.

TRUSTEE Larry Manes and Masterson spoke about a new strategic plan put in place during a Kansas Association of Community College Trustees meeting in Hutchinson May 18.
A group of 11 college trustees and school presidents from across the state developed goals in four main areas, marketing, planning and evaluation, public policies and funding and finance.
The ACCC board meets again July 9.

LOREN KORTE, who attended his final meeting as a college trustee, was presented with a plaque honoring his 12 years on the ACCC board. Korte declined to run for a fourth term. His seat is being replaced by Neal Barclay starting in July.