Southwestern Community College electrical students will have an opportunity to update a storefront in town after the SWCC board of trustees approved a contract with Union County Development Association (UCDA) during Tuesday’s meeting.
The board approved two electrical service contracts with the UCDA. The two contracts allow electrical students to gain hands-on experience through wiring and running conduit in a garage and attached storefront at a building purchased by the UCDA at 311 W. Montgomery St. in Creston.
The five day project is estimated to cost $4,000, which will be paid for by the UCDA.
During the meeting, the SWCC board ratified a collective bargaining agreement between Southwestern Community College Education Association and Southwestern Community College. Each employee covered by the agreement will receive a salary increase of 2.5 percent to their base salary and a two-year contract effective for fiscal years 2019 and 2020.
The SWCC selection committee recommended hiring Josh Abel and Alex Anderson, which the board approved. Abel and Anderson will fill the roles of chemistry and automotive instructors, respectively.
Additionally, the board approved to extend the contracts of Bill Taylor, vice president of instruction, Lindsay Stoaks, assistant vice president of instruction, and Dr. Barbara Crittenden, president, through June 30, 2019 with a salary increase of 2.5 percent.
The board approved the write-off of doubtful accounts totaling $109,964.26.
“We have gone through all of the steps our policies allow us in order to collect these accounts. They are from a few years past. So, they’ve gone through our internal collection process,” said Tia Samo, chief financial officer at Southwestern Community College.
The board approved modifications to SWCC’s Quality Faculty Plan based on recommendations by the Iowa Department of Education’s accreditation visit to the campus.
Taylor said the Quality Faculty Plan committee consists of three administrators and three faculty members. One change that was made to the Quality Plan was to set term limits for committee members. The modified Quality Faculty Plan now reads, “appointed faculty shall serve on the committee for a three year term. At the end of the third year, they may be reappointed for a second three year term, not to exceed two consecutive three year terms.”
Additionally, a stipulation allowing faculty to gain one professional development renewal unit for every instructional contract year was removed from the plan.
“If you taught here, we gave you credit for preparing for class, doing some research, getting ready for class,” said Taylor. “We gave you credit for each year you taught. The Department of Ed accreditation thought, ‘Well, there should be more to the professional development.’”
In the plan, the board also approved a change in the number of professional development renewal credits for faculty, reducing the requirement from 15 to 12 hours.