The Staff Association Advisory Council (SAAC) held its spring 2014 open meeting April 16, and it included highlights of the past few months and a Q&A session with Dr. Terry Smith, interim president; Dr. David Roebuck, interim dean for Academic Affairs; and Dr. Eric Cunningham, associate dean for Adult Higher Education.
- In August, the 35th Nationwide Campus will open in the Dallas area through a 2 +2 arrangement with Eastfield College in Mesquite, Texas.
- Columbia College is one of 10 hosts of the opening round of the NAIA Softball Tournament, which will be held May 12-14.
- Regarding the master plan, the college has been aggressive in property acquisition for future expansion, purchasing properties across from the soccer field and by Jefferson Middle School. There is the possibility of building a Cougar Village 2, which is an apartment-style residence area.
- Beginning in fall, Day Campus students will be able to take an online or Evening class.
- Student enrollment in the sciences and forensic science is up since the Brouder Science Center was opened. With the ability to take any science course in either the day or evening, the college anticipates that the increase in enrollment will continue.
Last year, Administrative Council was asked to implement economies by not having any expenditures on things that were nice to have, but not needed. Smith said that with that task in mind, college employees economized $1 million. Smith thanked everyone for having ideas on how to get by with less. “That $1 million is money that can go to good use in the future,” he said.
Each year, the Customer Service Committee does a drawing to send two main campus staff members to Nationwide Campus commencements. But this year, the committee decided to do something a little different. Under the proposal of Robert Klick, academic advisor for the Online Campus, the committee reversed the drawing and chose two staff members from Nationwide Campuses to attend the main campus commencement. Melanie Reynolds from the Hunter Army Airfield campus and Darrin Bartunek from the Salt Lake City campus will be in Columbia, Mo., for commencement.
- Approximately 84 percent of the SAAC budget was spent on training requests, such as conferences and webinars for staff.
- SAAC assisted in the creation of an Employee Education Grant (EEG)/Employee Graduate Education Grant (GEG) task force. It also assisted in the extension of the GEG to include online courses.
- Participants in the Biggest Loser competition lost more than 900 pounds total.
- There have been 142 PAWS awarded this year, up from 136 last year.