The Southwestern Community College Board of Trustees accepted the resignation of Denny Davis, district 1 representative, during its regular scheduled meeting Tuesday.
Davis has been a member of the board for 18 years and said he felt like it was time to step down.
“This is a really good board and really good school,” said Davis. “I felt like it was something I could contribute to and wanted to do that. It just kept going on and on and on. When I came, I didn’t expect to be here for this long.”
Davis represented the Greenfield area (District 1), and, like Davis, his replacement will also have to come from that area.
“All of our board members come from different areas within our college district so they represent the needs of that area in part,” said SWCC President Barbara Crittenden. “It’s an eight county area that we have within our district, so things can be a little different from one community to the next. It’s important that we have board members that are connected to their communities.”
Davis is a retired farm equipment dealer. He and his wife go south every winter and he still does a little farming which keeps him busy.
The board has 30 days to appoint someone to fill Davis’ seat.
“We’ll miss Denny,” said Crittenden. “He’s been on our board since 2001, so he’s been on the board for a long time and he’s really represented his community well. As an example, tonight, as we were discussing the program proposal for criminal justice, he’s recognizing some needs in their area and he can contribute that to the dialog, That really helps.”
Criminal Justice AAS
The board also approved the addition of a new Criminal Justice Associate of Applied Science (AAS) program at SWCC.
The program would add an additional five classes to the 10 the college currently offers for its criminal justice transfer program. This allows graduates to enter the work force immediately after graduation in some instances. To graduate from the program, students are required to complete 65 credit hours and a summer of field work.
“If they are going into police, patrol or sheriff work, they will still have to go to the police academy,” said Vice-President of Instruction Bill Taylor. “However, they would be able to go to a shortened version of the academy. If they have a two year degree, or a four year degree, in criminal justice, they can go to an academy set up at Hawkeye Community College or at Western Iowa Tech. That would be an eight-week version. If you don’t have a degree in criminal justice of any kind, then you have to go to the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy, which is a 16-week deal.”
Taylor said he was able to identify 594 positions requiring a criminal justice background within a 50-mile radius of Creston, and he hopes he can start adding students to the program beginning in August.
“I think this is a great idea,” said Davis. “There is always a demand, and there’s going to be more of a demand as time goes by.”
The proposed program must now go to the Iowa Board of Education for final approval.
In other SWCC board news:
• The board approved plans to proceed with the renovation of the SWCC science labs and the expansion of the Ag Center. See Friday’s Creston News Advertiser for more on these projects.