E-Bulletin of May 27, 2004
Table of Contents
Richardson Wins "Woman of the Year"
Assembly of May 19, 2004
Amy Iseneker was elected chair for next year. Kathy Paluscio was elected vice chair.
Dean Al Porter gave an update on MiddleStates. He will be putting together all of the committees’ work this summer and there will be time for all to review the report and make changes. The accreditation review team will be coming to campus in April of next year. “I am most appreciative of members of the steering committee for their hard work,” he said.
Mark Meara gave an update on IT services. He thanked all those who completed their survey and said the results were very encouraging to the IT staff. He said the staff will be implementing a new helpdesk system that will be able to track inventory of IT equipment and better manage helpdesk calls.
On Integrow there will be a new port added by the end of July with features such as an online grade roster and assignment of counselors. Meara said the consortium has new leadership that is making great strides. One goal is to web-enable the entire system.
Dr. Rose began his comments by discussing the culture at Mercer. The task force appointed to look at this issue met with a consultant, who designed a questionnaire. While some members of the committee reviewed the questionnaire, Dr. Rose did not see it before it was posted to MLink.
“I did not get to review the questionnaire until after it was on MLink, and I was not happy with it,” he said. “I thought it was not what we were looking for. I want to try to assess where all of you think we are right now and where you think we should be. And to take a look at what we are doing right and at the gap between where we are and where we should be, and start to address those issues. We are going to put this project on hold… We are going to redirect and reintroduce it at the fall assembly,” he said.
Regarding the strategic plan, Dr. Rose said the extended cabinet has been reviewing each area.
“We have had a pretty good year in many ways. Financially we are secure. We got a good start because we budgeted for no enrollment increase and last summer we increased by 14%, which surprised me.” Fall enrollment was also up and spring was stable. Dr. Rose said he is predicting that enrollment in the coming year will be up between one and three percent.
Dr. Rose reminded everyone about the NJSTARS program. “I don’t know what the impact of New Jersey Stars will be on the college,” he said, speculating that if the Governor thinks community colleges are a good place to invest public monies, “maybe people will think they should send their kids to Mercer for their first two years.”
Dr. Rose said the college’s budget is in good shape, with higher government allocations. Mercer has increased tuition $3 per credit hour starting in the fall, which is a lot less than many other community colleges in New Jersey.
On facilities, Dr. Rose reported that a stone wall was added in front of Kelsey Theatre, and a fountain and garden is now in place at the Student Center’s side entrance. New paving stone will be installed around the quad. Lighting upgrades will continue. Reconstruction of the pool will begin after the conclusion of summer camps because of a serious leak. The HRI lab will be upgraded in the ES building. In the Administration building, work is progressing on five new classrooms on the first floor.
Dr. Rose said the college will upgrade the Learning Center in the Library, and offices will continue to be refurbished.
A major renovation will soon start at the James Kerney Campus, to create a new entranceway on Broad Street and also add space inside the building. Classrooms will be added and kitchen facilities will be expanded.
Another project coming to WWC will be to create a welcome center between the Student Center and Library. The Bookstore will be relocated to the first floor.
The county asked the college to consider building an indoor track facility on the campus. If approved, it will have six lanes and will seat 1500, a great alternative in the event of bad weather on graduation day.
“I think the future looks particularly bright,” Dr. Rose said. “We are financially sound. There is a lot going on. We are in for a great couple of weeks culminating with our graduation ceremonies next week.
“When I go
out into the community people tell me what a great school this is. This
makes me feel awfully proud. Many of you have been here a long time
and you truly are the foundation of this institution. Thank you for
everything you do for our students and the community.”
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