The Board of Trustees met Tuesday, Jan. 21, at the EpiCenter.
The full agenda, supplemental materials and meeting video, which is 1 hour, 55 minutes long, are available on the board’s website. The video also is included below.
Meeting highlights included:
Success rates improve for third straight semester
Jesse Coraggio, Associate Vice President for Institutional Effectiveness, Research, and Grants, reported that initiatives to improve support for students appear to be paying off. Student success rates — the number of students who complete a course with an A, B or C — increased college-wide for the third semester in a row.
Even more exciting, Coraggio said, are the gains made by minority students, particularly African-American and Hispanic male students. The gap between the success of minority students and non-minority students is narrowing.
“That’s the achievement gap, and we’re starting to close it down,” he said.
Trustee Bridgette Bello asked if any one initiative is responsible for the gains.
Coraggio said he believes it is a cumulative effect of all the efforts of the College Experience: Student Success.
“I think it’s a synergy of things” including the five key areas of the College Experience, Coraggio said. “We’ve made some changes in policies as well to really set expectations for students at the front end…and we work with them through it. What happened before, we didn’t have policiess that had as much teeth and we didn’t have these conversations with students.”
The College Experience efforts, too, he said, creates a safety net for more students, identifying them right away if they struggle.
Spring 2014 enrollment trends
Patrick Rinard, Associate Vice President for Enrollment Services, presented a look a enrollment for Spring. The number of students remained relatively steady over last spring, down less than 1 percent, though the number of semester hours students are taking is down about 1.5 percent.
Some of the noteworthy observations:
- New students increased by 5.4 percent
- Readmitted students increased 10.1 percent
- Bachelor’s degree students increased by more than 7 percent
- Developmental education enrollment decreased by 23 percent
As part of the presentation, too, Coraggio explained how deans are using enrollment data and trend data to build course schedules for 2014-15.
Developmental education reform update
Changes in state law, which went into effect this semester spring semester, deem students who graduated from a public Florida high school on or after 2007 college-ready. The placement and developmental education courses are not mandatory for those students.
As a result, almost 500 students are enrolled in college level courses this spring who likely would have been in developmental education courses previously.
“Hundreds of students we believe are misplaced this semester, by their own choice,” Dr. Law said. “The day of reckoning is coming over the horizon. Students who opted to go into courses where we didn’t think they will succeed, that reality is going to brush over them in the next couple of weeks. And I sustpect we will start seeing students saying, ‘How did we get in this mess?’ “
Dr. Anne Cooper, Senior Vice President for Instruction and Academic Programs, said faculty members are going to be watching especially closely for signs that students are struggling in entry-level courses this spring. “We are obviously very in tune to this issue,” she said. “The earlier we can identify those who are in need of more assistance, the better.”
Learn more: Read the Developmental Education Reform Update for Spring 2014 or watch this section of the meeting, which begins at the 46:55 mark.
Grants strong through first half of the fiscal year
Jackie Skryd, Executive Director of Grants Development, gave a midterm report on the college’s grants program. So far this year, the college has recieved $8.5-million from a broad range of sources, including the U.S. Department of Labor, the Florida Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Education and the Gates Foundation.
Applications are in the works for an additional $4-million in grants for the year.