The Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College Board of Trustees convened a meeting on Monday, November 1, 2021, at 3:00 p.m., in person, and via Zoom in The Brumit Center for Culinary Arts and Hospitality. Mr. Matt Kern, Chair, presided.
The following members of the Board participated in person: Theresa Banks, Joe Brumit, Michael Garrison, Tommy Justus, Matt Kern, David King, Judy Lewis, Roger Metcalf, John Parham, Max Queen, Frances Ramsey, and Bethany Duke, Ex-Officio. Trustees Himanshu Karvir and Libby Kyles participated via Zoom. Trustee Nian Avery 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; Ashley 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 the roll, a quorum was present.
Presentation of Certificates of Appreciation
President Emeritus Ray Bailey presented Certificates of Appreciation to Ms. Sherry Lunsford for her 43 years of service to the College, and to Ms. Becky Watkins for her 41.4 years of service to the College.
Ms. Lunsford donated a picture of the Pines Building to the College’s archives.
Mr. Steven Sizemore, Chair of the Foundation Board, spoke with the Board of Trustees about how the Foundation Board operates to support the College. Foundation Board members are ambassadors in the community and support both students and employees of the College through mini-grants for staff professional development, financial support for students experiencing a financial emergency, the Lavender Fund which supports single parents, and a fund that is targeted for areas of greatest need.
The Foundation has $16.1 Million in financial assets which is funded by individual donors, grants, business sponsors, and endowed scholarships. The Foundation adheres to the College’s Strategic Plan and will provide help and support to the College by all means possible.
At 3:30 p.m., Chair Kern asked for a motion to approve the Consent Agenda.
Dr. Banks moved to approve Consent Agenda items: 1. A. October 4, 2021 Board Meeting Minutes, and 1. B. Personnel Actions.
The motion to approve the Consent Agenda was seconded by Ms. Lewis. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Kyles, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, Queen, and Ramsey each verbally approved the Consent Agenda. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.
2. A. Dr. Beth Stewart informed the Board that the College has been asked to offer a Cardiovascular Sonography program by both Advent Health and Mission Hospital. Advent Health has offered to help offset the startup expenses of the program, including funds for faculty and equipment. Both Advent Health and Mission Hospital have agreed to provide clinical spaces for our students. Job growth potential for Cardiovascular Sonographers is positive, with 219 positions currently open in our service area. The program would start in the fall of 2022, and Cardiovascular Sonography graduates can expect to earn approximately $66,000 annually.
Dr. Parham moved to approve offering a Cardiovascular Sonography Program at the College. The motion was seconded by Mr. Brumit. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Karvir, Kern, King, Kyles, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, Queen, and Ramsey each verbally approved offering a Cardiovascular Sonography Program. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.
2. B. Dr. Dirk Wilmoth reviewed the Negative Fund Balance Report as of June 30, 2021, with the Board. The College is required to report negative fund balances related to financial aid. Funds will be transferred from the positive Institutional Loan Fund and the Pell & Direct Offset accounts into the negative fund balance. The College has ample institutional liquidity to offset unplanned negative fund balances, ensuring unconstrained institutional operations.
Mr. Garrison moved to acknowledge the receipt and review of the unplanned Negative Fund Balances as of June 30, 2021. The motion was seconded by Mr. King. Trustees Banks, Brumit, Garrison, Justus, Kern, King, Kyles, Lewis, Metcalf, Parham, Queen, and Ramsey each verbally approved the Negative Fund Balance Report as of June 30, 2021. The motion was passed by unanimous consent.
Dr. Gossett stated that the administrative team of the College has been gathering data for the potential correspondence with HCA regarding the proposed Galen College of Nursing. Dr. Gossett shared that a lot has been learned since the October 4 Board meeting, and introduced Ms. Christy Andrews, Chair of Nursing, and Dr. Jon Wiener, Dean of Allied Health to the Board. Ms. Andrews and Dr. Wiener provided the following information about HCA and A-B Tech’s Nursing Program:
- HCA has a partnership with A-B Tech and other colleges in Western North Carolina.
- Bi-monthly meetings are held with the leadership of HCA to ensure that A-B Tech students have clinical sites.
- A-B Tech provides HCA with educated and prepared nurses, and our graduates are ahead of other schools.
- A-B Tech is the only college in Western North Carolina where every graduating student spends 120 hours of one-on-one time with a nurse in preparation for the transition from student to nurse.
- We realize that enrollment at A-B Tech may be affected by the Galen College of Nursing, but we continue to be committed to being the best nursing school in Western NC.
- HCA currently has over 600 open nursing positions.
- A-B Tech has 280 nursing students at any given time of the year. We have the largest program in the region with two admission cycles.
- The Galen College of Nursing is not meant to replace A-B Tech, but to supplement HCA with their staffing needs.
- HCA has written letters of support on our behalf to get our Nursing program accredited.
The Board discussed HCA and the Nursing program at length.
Ms. Andrews asked the Board to talk about our programs in the community; about what the College is doing, that only the best Nurses come from A-B Tech, and that not only do Nurses make a difference - they can make a living in Asheville!
Dr. Gossett then presented the following information regarding the results of the 2021 North Carolina Community Colleges Performance Measures for Student Success to the Board:
- The College’s performance is based on seven measures: Basic Skills Progress, College-Level English Success, College-Level Math Success, First Year Progression, Completion, Licensure and Certification, and University Transfer.
- Performance measures are color-coded green, yellow, red, and black. Green is excellent, and black is below the baseline level.
- A-B Tech has a lot of yellow and red scores this year.
- We are not happy with our results. The good news is that this report is based on three-year-old data and that we have already made plans to improve our scores.
- Retention and completion continue to be a challenge for us.
- The Performance Measures tie into the Strategic Plan. We want to increase support, enrollment, partnerships, and innovation.
- We are working hard to reduce equity gaps, student debt, non-completion, and the digital divide.
Dr. Gossett concluded the presentation by stating that although the College has a lot of work to do, we have already started with the Pathways Project and by utilizing a new software called Finish First. The Pathways Project has students take math and English earlier in their educational careers. Finish First identifies students who may have completed a diploma or a degree without knowing it while pursuing their Associate's Degree. We are constantly improving and working with the System Office as well as the General Assembly on our Performance Measures.
4. A. Mr. Kern asked Dr. Wilmoth to provide an update at A-B Tech Enka. Dr. Wilmoth provided the following information to the Board:
- A Master Plan for A-B Tech Enka was completed and paid for out of Article 46 Funds.
- Building Utilization and Condition Assessments were conducted.
- A market opportunity analysis was conducted.
- The results of all of the above were presented to the Board and the Buncombe County Commissioners in February 2021.
- Approval for replacing the roofs in A-B Tech Enka was received from Buncombe County.
- A Request for Proposal (RFP) was developed over the summer and issued in September.
- A mandatory pre-bid meeting was held in October with three vendors present. One vendor subsequently dropped out of the bid resulting in the College having to restart the bidding process.
- A new bid for the roof replacement project goes out on November 9, 2021.
- Concerns remain regarding the adequacy of the budget, the growing number of leaks in the TCC building, and the delays preventing the College from expanding our programming as anticipated by the Master Plan.
The Board discussed A-B Tech Enka at length, including the timeframe of the Article 46 funds, the status and condition of the Haynes building, and the need for future visioning for the entire 43-acre campus at A-B Tech Enka.
Ms. Katie Hast and Mr. John Bradley presented the 2020-2021 Information Security Program Annual Report to the Board. As the College is considered a financial institution because we receive federally-funded student aid, it is mandatory to have an annually approved Information Security Program. Ms. Hast and Mr. Bradley discussed the foundational focus areas of the Program which are removing barriers to effective communication, collaboration, and student success, and ensuring financial wellness for our students, staff, College, and community. Employees at A-B Tech have participated in a safeguard program known as KnowBe4. KnowBe4 is the world’s largest integrated platform for security awareness training combined with simulated phishing attacks.
The College also regularly installs patches to correct software vulnerabilities, regularly backs up data, and replaces servers as needed. We constantly monitor the probability and potential impacts of the risk of a ransomware attack on our database. We do all we can to keep our College, students, and employees safe!
Mrs. Bethany Duke, President of the Student Government Association shared the following information with the Board:
- Autumn in Asheville was a wonderful event that supports the Foundation.
- Mrs. Duke stated that she appreciated the presentation from Mr. Sizemore, as she is a Foundation Scholarship recipient, and having financial help allows students to focus on their studies and their future.
- We have several students lined up to be inducted into the National Society for Leadership Success. Students must carry a minimum 3.0 GPA to be considered for Society.
- The Student Government Association is focusing on mental well-being this semester.
- Several Speaker Broadcasts are scheduled this semester as well. President Clinton and Gabrielle Union are two of the speaker's students will be virtually engaged with.
- The SGA is partnering with the American Legion to hold an event on campus to honor Veterans on Veterans Day.
- The SGA is volunteering with the Salvation Army and their Angel Tree program, with ABCCM on a food and clothing drive, and with Manna Foodbank for a food drive for our community, students, and staff.
The October 2021-2022 Student Success Scorecard is in the Handouts.
The next Board meeting will be on December 6, 2021, at 3:00 p.m., in The Brumit Center for Culinary Arts and Hospitality.
On a motion properly made, the meeting adjourned at 5:20 p.m.
Carolyn H. Rice