January DGB Highlights

January 26, 2018 by Anonymous

The four finalists to become the eighth president of Northland Pioneer College will be meeting with community members, college staff and members of the Navajo County Community College District Governing Board the week of February 5.

A schedule of public Meet and Greet sessions and biographies of the finalists are available online. Meet and Greets will be in the Show Low campus’ Ponderosa Center Symposium, from 11 to 1, and in the Holbrook campus’ Tiponi Community Center Board Room, from 3 to 5 p.m.

Governing board members met following their regular monthly meeting on January 16 to develop interview questions for the candidates and to finalize the interview schedule.

The regular meeting started with the re-election of Chair Frank Lucero and Secretary Daniel Peaches as the board’s officers for 2018.

“NPC was, again, the first community college district in the state to complete their required audit for the 2017 fiscal year,” noted Jay Zsorey, financial audit director with the Arizona Auditor General’s Office. Zsorey and David Glennon, manager for the NPC audit, explained the auditors issued a “clean” or unmodified opinions for the financial audit and the single audit. The auditors concentrated this year’s review on Information Technology controls, management and security.

Auditing procedures are adapting to changes in regulatory processes, as well as technology, explained Zsorey. Several auditor recommendations for strengthening IT access controls and overall system security are already being implemented, noted PJ Way, NPC’s Chief Information Officer.

Chief Business Officer Maderia Ellison thanked the Auditor General’s staff, the NPC Business Office, Financial Aid and IT staff for their work on the annual audit. She and the auditors thank President Dr. Jeanne Swarthout for participating in the audit meetings throughout the entire audit cycle. “Usually the president is not involved, but we appreciated her input into the process,” noted Glennon. The board formally accepted the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) and Single Audit Report.

The board also approved a renewed licensing contract that supports over 200 virtual servers. Using VMWare replaces physical hardware and improves reliability and security, noted Way.

Two additional contracts, totaling over $583,000, will provide new hardware and software to upgrade and support the 45 future endpoint connections for interactive video classrooms. The upgrade will utilize the same high definition technology piloted under the TALON project, which connects 12 high schools to NPC’s network. This is the first year of a three-year project to replace aging equipment and improve technology in connected classrooms throughout the college’s nine locations.

In preparation for an accreditation site visit in November 2019, Jeremy Raisor, NPC’s director of Enrollment Services, presented an informational overview of NPC’s federal compliance documentation. NPC is currently fully in compliance with federal regulations in all 12 accreditor classifications, but President Swarthout noted the criteria can change with little notice.

The board approved a list of hearing officers to be used in employment cases, and authorized board member Derrick Leslie to attend the Higher Learning Commission’s annual conference in Chicago in late April.

During the monthly review of the college’s financial condition, Ellison noted property tax revenues on a cumulative basis through November were comparable to last year at the same time. She also explained a “reclassification” of the proceeds from one account to another for use by the NPC Construction Program. This was related to the sale of a house in Holbrook built by students in the construction program.

Betsyann Wilson, executive director of NPC Friends & Family, thanked the administrative team for again donating the proceeds from the Holbrook Kiwanis Club’s Quiz Nite to the scholarship fund. Wilson explained that several scholarships would be opened later this spring, to help pay for fall classes.

She encouraged students to consider applying for a scholarship as a part-time job. “If it takes you 2 hours to apply and you receive a $500 scholarship, you just earned $250 per hour,” she said. There are literally thousands of scholarships available and many go unclaimed each year. If you need assistance in preparing a scholarship application, Wilson offers free workshops and one-on-one sessions. “There is no financial reason a student should not be able to complete their educational goals. Money is available – you just need to apply.”

She also announced the third annual Scholarship Golf Tournament on Saturday, April 28, at the Silver Creek Golf Club. Registration and more information is available online at www.npc.edu/GolfTournament.

Faculty Association President Pat Lopez and Dr. Michael Solomonson explained the process used for the Assessment of Student Knowledge. While tied to NPC accreditation, the process measures a student’s critical thinking, effective communication and other key skills to determine whether learning objectives are being met.

Solomonson explained how annually each department establishes learning goals, uses tools for evaluation, then adjusts goals to improve student outcomes. How the student responds to diversity, whether in the natural environment or culture, is also measured and weighed into the assessment of outcomes.

President Swarthout pointed out that Governor Doug Ducey’s proposed budget does include equalization and formula-level Maintenance & Operations funding for NPC, but that the M&O funding was slightly below anticipated levels.

The next regularly-scheduled meeting will be Tuesday, February 20, at 10 a.m. in the Tiponi Community Center on the Holbrook – Painted Desert Campus, 2251 E. Navajo Blvd. Copies of the agenda will be posted online at least 24 hours in advance.

– – – N P C – Expanding Minds • Transforming Lives – – –