The Wilkes Community College Board of Trustees met on Thursday, October 10, at the John A. Walker Community Center located on the Wilkes Campus.

l-r: Terry Bumgarner, WCC Board of Trustees Chair; Shabrina McPherson, WCC SGA president; Cynthia Alford, liason to the Board of Trustees; and Dr. Jeff Cox, WCC president.

Prior to the start of the business session, Cinnamon Martin, dean of Advising, presented an overview of the newly established Petro Kulynych Student Advising program.

Cynthia Alford, liaison to the board of trustees administered the oath of office to Shabrina McPherson, SGA president.

l-r: Shabrina McPherson and Cynthia Alford

The business session began with the approval of the minutes from the August 8, 2019 Board of Trustees meeting.

College President’s Report

Dr. Cox gave an overview of the strategic plan implementation.

Trustees approved the following meeting schedule for 2020:

  • Thursday, January 9, 2020, Walker Center
  • Thursday, April 9, 2020, Walker Center
  • Friday, May 15, 2020, Walker Center, Orchestra Room (between graduation ceremonies)
  • Thursday, August 6, 2020, Alleghany Center
  • Thursday, October 8, 2020, Walker Center
  • Friday, December 11, 2020 (lunch meeting/Christmas event for trustees) Walker Center

Chairperson’s Report

Terry Bumgarner, chair of the WCC Board of Trustees, announced the membership of the 2019-2020 Standing Committees. Terry Bumgarner will serve as the ex-officio member of each committee. The Buildings and Grounds Committee is comprised of Arnold Lakey, Chair, Bill Davis, Katrina Miller, and Josh Roten. The Finance Committee is comprised of Ricky Brown, Chair, Keith Elmore, Josh Roten, and Larry Stone. The Personnel Committee is comprised of Gerald Lankford, Chair, Tracy Walker, Bert Hall, and Jay Vannoy. The Program and Planning Committee is comprised of Sylvia Robinson, Chair, Susan Murphy, Connie Cox, and Pam Scott. The Investment Committee is comprised of Ricky Brown, Chair, William Watts, Susan Whittington, and Jim Smoak.

Mr. Bumgarner, chair of the Board of Trustees, announced the next trustee orientation/education session, scheduled for March 18-20, 2020, in Raleigh, N.C. 

Buildings and Grounds Committee

Trustees reviewed the Annual Security Report (ASR), which provides three calendar years of select crime statistics for all campus locations and facilities. Additionally, it includes safety and security programs and procedures as required by the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Crime Statistics Act. Colleges and universities are required to collect and publish the ASR by October 1 of each year.

In accordance with WCC Policy 7.06, Campus Security and Crime Awareness, data has been compiled for the required ASR for the year 2018. The data is reported by location, and no major violent crimes were reported at any of the campus or non-campus locations during the 2018 calendar year. However, there was one Clery reportable incident of stalking that occurred at a non-campus property. Besides the single stalking incident, there were no other Clery reportable crimes reported from any of the other campus or non-campus locations.

Arnold Lakey, WCC Foundation president, provided the board with the following update on the Ashe Campus project. Site work is underway on the Ashe Campus project that includes site grading, foundation piers, and the installation of water and sewer lines and storm drains. Structural steel installation is scheduled to begin in mid-October.

Vannoy Construction has received all the subcontractor bids for the remaining portion of construction and they are currently evaluating the bids to verify that low bidders met all project requirements. Once the bids are verified, Vannoy Construction will submit a guaranteed maximum price for the project to WCC for approval.

Finance Committee

Per G.S. 115D-20(4), all courses taken by Career and College Promise students at community colleges are tuition-waived. Textbooks are a student’s responsibility, however, there may be local provisions to cover these costs. Since the inception of Career and College Promise, WCC has subsidized college textbooks, charging students $20 per course. This saves students hundreds of dollars on textbooks. In order to offset some of the cost to the college, while still providing students with a manageable textbook expense, the administration recommended an increase of the Career and College Promise (CCP) material fee from $20 per course, to a maximum of $30 per course. The trustees approved to increase the CCP material fee to a maximum of $30 per course.

The 2019-2020 Annual Fund Drive began July 1, 2019, with the WCC faculty and staff and the foundation members. This year’s goal is $63,000. The administrative council and WCC Foundation have set the following priorities for this year’s annual fund: WCC SkillsUSA Club, Prowler Food Pantry, Doc Watson Student Emergency Fund, GED & HiSET Testing Scholarship, and Study Abroad. The annual fund drive will continue through June 30, 2020.

Personnel Committee

The trustees received biographical narratives on new employees. They are Mike Murphy, Diesel, and Heavy Equipment instructor; Amanda Everhart, liaison for Ashe Early College High School; Jason Hodge, Industrial Systems, lead instructor; Jonah Severt, Diesel and Heavy Equipment instructor; Mindy Blackburn, liaison, Wilkes Early College High School; Ethan Garner, psychology instructor; Steve Marion, math instructor; Spencer Dagenhart, Diesel and Heavy Equipment instructor; Billy Shumate, nursing instructor; Heather Johnson, SAGE educational advisor; Terry Lewis, maintenance technician/custodian Ashe Campus.

Employees assuming new roles at WCC are Cary Gardner, student advisor/English instructor, Ashe Campus; Lora Davis,fine arts instructor, Ashe Campus; Neal Triplett, math and science chair; Iva McNeil, math lead instructor; Kelly Pipes, economics lead instructor; Jon Hutchins, SAGE director; Lee K Cornett, senior customer relations specialist; Stacee Whitley, community and development specialist.

One resignation was received; Pam Rhoades, nursing instructor, effective August 31, 2019.

The following retirements were announced; Richard Stone, Industrial Systems lead instructor, effective August 31, 2019, and Debbie Cangiolosi, senior customer relations specialist, effective October 31, 2019.

Program and Planning Committee

The trustees reviewed the 2019 Enrollment and FTE Comparison Report for Academic Year’s 2018-2019 vs. Academic Year 2019-2020 (as of October 2019).

The trustees approved the addition of the following new program; Agribusiness Technology (A15100).

The Student Government Association (SGA officers for the 2019-2020 school year thus far are: Shabrina McPherson, president and Eric Kohlmeier, vice president.

The 2019 annual college fair, hosted in collaboration with Wilkes County Schools, was held on September 12 with representatives from 57 colleges and universities in attendance to speak with students and parents. This was a great opportunity to gather information about programs of study, admissions, and other college-related questions. The College Foundation of North Carolina (CFNC) was also present to answer questions. CFNC is a free service of the State of North Carolina that helps students plan, apply, and pay for college. Students from the Blue Ridge Christian Home Educators Association, Millers Creek Christian School, and Harvest Time Christian Academy were also invited to take part.

The donor recognition task force made a recommendation to name the existing facility on the Ashe Campus in honor of Mr. Martin Messer.

Motion made, duly seconded and carried unanimously to name the existing facility on the Ashe Campus in honor of Mr. Martin Messer.

The WCC Board of Trustees will meet again on December 13, 2019, at the John A. Walker Center Lakey Ballroom.