April 4, 2022 Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes

The Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College Board of Trustees convened a meeting on Monday, April 4, 2022, at 3:02 p.m., in person and via Zoom in the Brumit Center for Culinary Arts. Mr. Matt Kern, Chair, presided.

The following members of the Board participated in person: Theresa Banks, Joe Brumit, Tommy Justus, Himanshu Karvir, Matt Kern, David King, Judy Lewis, John Parham, Frances Ramsey, and Bethany Duke, Ex-Officio. Trustees Michael Garrison and Roger Metcalf participated via Zoom. Trustee Libby Kyles was absent.

Others present for the meeting included: Dr. John Gossett, President; Terry Brasier, Vice President of Student Services; Shanna Chambers, Vice President of Human Resources and Organizational Development; Amanda Edwards, Executive Director of College Advancement; Kerri Glover; Executive Director of Community Relations and Marketing; Anne Oxenreider, Executive Director of Strategic Planning and Institutional Research; Beth Stewart, Vice President of Instructional Services; Brian Willis, Vice President of Information and Technology/CIO; Dirk Wilmoth, Vice President of Business and Finance/CFO; Deborah Wright, Vice President of Economic and Workforce Development and Continuing Education; Darryl Rhymes, Director of Employment and Employee Relations; Ashely Leonard, College Attorney; and Carolyn Rice, Secretary to the Board.


Call To Order

Chair Kern read the ethics statement. No conflicts of interest were reported. Ms. Rice called roll; a quorum was present.


Presentation Of The Order Of The Long Leaf Pine

Dr. Gossett and Chair Kern recognized former Dean of Engineering and Applied Technology, Vernon Daugherty, for his award of the Order of the Long Leaf Pine by Governor Roy Cooper. Mr. Daugherty thanked his former chairs, faculty, staff, and division for their efforts in making this award possible.


Consent Agenda

At 3:10 p.m., Chair Kern asked for a motion to approve the Consent Agenda.

Dr. Parham moved to approve Consent Agenda items: 1. A. March 7, 2022, Board Meeting Minutes, 1. B. March 7, 2022, Closed Session Minutes, and 1. C. Personnel Actions.

The motion to approve the Consent Agenda was seconded by Mr. Brumit. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, and Ramsey each verbally approved the Consent Agenda. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.


Resolution/Action Items

2. A. Dr. Stewart informed the Board that the College is seeking approval to offer a Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) Diploma, which would start in the spring of 2023. Mission Hospital has indicated that they intend to hire LPNs at their sub-acute facilities such as CarePartners, My Care Now sites, Home Health, and hospice. The program will take three semesters to complete, and the average salary is around $50,000 a year. If approved, the College will need to hire two new faculty members. The program will be offered as a night class and will be taught in the same classroom space that our registered nurses are trained in. Prerequisites for potential students will be the same as those for the nursing program.

Dr. Parham moved to approve the Licensed Practical Nursing Diploma. Ms. Lewis seconded the motion. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, and Ramsey each verbally approved the Licensed Practical Nursing Diploma program. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.

2. B. Dr. Dirk Wilmoth discussed Removing Overdue Student Accounts with the Board. The College is required to actively pursue the collection of outstanding student debt for a minimum of 365 days following the Debt Collection Guidelines of the State. The debt is then required to be placed with the Department of Revenue for a minimum of 365 days to be collected according to the Setoff Debt Collection Act. Once the debt is three years old, the College requests permission from the Trustees to remove (“write-off”) the debt from its books as an asset. However, the debt continues to be noted on the student account, and collection efforts by the College will continue.

Mr. King moved to approve the Removal of Overdue Student Accounts. Dr. Justus seconded the motion. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, and Ramsey each verbally approved the Removal of Overdue Student Accounts. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.

2. C. The Buncombe County Recreation Services have proposed two different concepts for a greenway that will run along Hominy Creek, located at A-B Tech Enka. The Board reviewed both concepts; (A) would have a walkway up to the main campus that keeps an existing parking lot, and (B) that would require building a new parking lot behind the Haynes Tower. Dr. Wilmoth shared that the Administration recommends concept (A) as it minimizes the disruption of one of the largest undeveloped wooded tracts at A-B Tech Enka.

The Trustees discussed both options, security needs, the cost, and the timeline for completion of the greenway.

Ms. Lewis moved to approve concept (A) for the Proposed Enka Heritage Trailhead. Dr. Justus seconded the motion. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, and Ramsey each verbally approved concept (A) for the Proposed Enka Heritage Trailhead. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.

2. D. Dr. Gossett read a Resolution of Commendation for Trustee Max Queen who passed away on March 29, 2022, after a courageous battle with cancer.

Ms. Lewis moved to approve the Resolution of Commendation for Trustee Max Queen. Dr. Parham seconded the motion. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, and Ramsey each verbally approved the Resolution of Commendation for Trustee Max Queen. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.

Chair Kern took a moment to thank the Trustees for attending Mr. Queen’s service. We are all in shock that he passed away so quickly. He was a wonderful person who did wonderful things for many people.


President's Report

Dr. Gossett shares the following information with the Board:

  • Our fifth-year SACS review is complete, and the College received a good report.
  • We met with Dr. Tony Baldwin, the Superintendent of Buncombe County Schools, regarding what the middle college looks like and how it serves middle college students. A-B Tech currently has fifty middle college students on campus, and the need for space on campus is growing.
  • Dr. Gossett has met or is scheduled to meet with all the Representatives from Western North Carolina to discuss the Community College System’s Legislative Agenda.
  • A meeting was held with Ms. Amanda Edwards and Mr. Brownie Newman to discuss workforce housing issues in the community. A-B Tech wants to be at the table and part of the solution in meeting housing needs.
  • North Carolina State Treasurer Dale Folwell was on campus last week. We had a good meeting with superintendents, CFOs, and Presidents from the surrounding counties in western North Carolina.
  • Thank you to all who attended the dedication of the King's Common. It was a nice event and great to see Dr. King back on campus.
  • A public meeting was held at A-B Tech Enka to discuss the plans for the Haynes Tower and the future of A-B Tech Enka. Trustees Metcalf and Lewis attended, which gave credence to the plans.
  • The Executive Leadership Team (ELT) spent time in personnel training with Mr. Greg Mayo of Human Resources Solutions. Understanding each other will go a long way to keep our team moving forward.
  • Members of ELT as well as forty employees spent three days in intensive Emergency Operations Training. Training will continue for faculty in the fall. The College will be prepared to handle several different types of emergencies if they arise.
  • The College finally received a deed to the land for the Training Center on the Pratt & Whitney site. Unfortunately, the deed is unacceptable so negotiations continue. We continue to train employees for Pratt & Whitney on the Asheville campus.


Trustee Business

4. A. Chair Kern appointed Trustees David King, Himanshu Karvir, and Frances Ramsey to the Presidential Evaluation Committee.

4. B. Chair Kern stated that the Annual Statement of Economic Interest Forms are due to the state by April 18, 2022, and asked the Board to please make sure they turn in their form.

4. C. The May 14 Commencement Ceremony will be held in person this year. Please let Ms. Rice know if you plan to attend.

Dr. Parham mentioned that Mr. Queen was so interested in helping our community and asked what the vision was for the College. Dr. Parham would like for members of the Board to approach the city and county to ask them to create a fund to provide free tuition and supplies for minority and low-income students.

Mr. King shared that the county is expected to help with housing and that the College should be first in line for those funds. Affordable housing would be a start to helping minority and low-income students.


Staff Report

Ms. Debbie Cromwell discussed Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeships with the Board. Ms. Cromwell presented the following information:

  • Work-Based Learning (WBL) is an instructional strategy that enhances classroom learning by connecting it to the workplace. It has a long history of leading to higher student success, economic mobility, and industry support.
  • Major components of WBL are pre-apprenticeships and apprenticeships.
  • Pre-apprenticeships are designed to prepare individuals to enter and succeed in registered apprenticeship programs. Tuition waivers are available for high school students completing a pre-apprenticeship program and securing a registered apprenticeship within six months of graduation.
  • Registered apprenticeships are the flagship of WBL and are designed to meet employer needs. Components of registered apprenticeships include employer involvement, structured on-the-job learning, job-related education and instruction, rewards for skill gains, and a national occupational credential.
  • A-B Tech currently sponsors fourteen registered, pre-apprenticeship programs, and was recently featured on WLOS. We have thirty-seven electrical apprentices alone.
  • The NC Legislature has approved $12 million for Apprenticeship NC to increase youth participation (ages 16-25) in tier one and tier two counties. As a tier three county, Buncombe does not qualify. Madison is a tier two county and does qualify. The College has received an additional $40,000 that will be spent on marketing apprenticeships in Madison County.

The Trustees discussed potential opportunities for apprenticeships in Madison County at length. Ms. Cromwell will work directly with Trustees from Madison County to fill needed apprenticeships.


SGA Report

Ms. Bethany Duke shared that graduation is the big push for students now. There continue to be a lot of opportunities for extracurricular activities, and April is Earth month.



Divisional Updates, the March 2021-2022 Student Success Scorecard, and the State and County Budget Report as of February 28, 2022, are in the Handouts.

The next Board meeting will be on Monday, May 2, 2022, at 3:00 p.m., in The Brumit Center for Culinary Arts and Hospitality.



On a motion properly made, the meeting adjourned at 4:16 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,

Carolyn H. Rice
Board Secretary