ACC regents approve reconstruction of walking/jogging track
Alvin Community College regents approved funds for the reconstruction of the two-mile walking/jogging track at the main campus during a regular board meeting on Feb. 25.
In addition to general deterioration over the years, the track lost over 200 feet during hurricane reconstruction and recent drainage projects. The new track will utilize a limestone base material overlaid with asphalt.
As a cost saving measure, ACC will act as the general contractor for the project under the direction of ACC Physical Plant Director Bill Nielsen. The cost of the project is estimated at $90,000.
According to Nielsen, construction is scheduled to begin in April and will take approximately a month to complete. Construction will also occur in sections so portions of the track can be utilized throughout the process.
In other matters, board members approved some fee changes for the next academic year.
Each year, a standing committee at ACC reviews tuition and fees for credit and continuing education/workforce development courses as required by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
To cover the increasing costs of technical training, some fees were increased or added to various technical programs.
The Technology Fee was increased from $40 to $45 per student and a $25 fee was added for several polysomnography courses, a $15 fee was added for pharmacy technician courses and some fees were created for two Emergency Medical Technology courses and the new electroneurodiagnostic (END) technology program that begins this fall. Some courses in Diagnostic Cardiovascular Sonography will increase by $5 to offset lab expenses.
The largest increase occurred for five Associate Degree Nursing courses to reflect the adoption of a new instructional package which offers standardized tests and extensive remediation tools.
“Students currently pay $459 in preparation for the state licensing exam,” ACC President Dr. Rodney Allbright reported to the board. “This recommendation from the ADN faculty is a new and more comprehensive program.”
The combined fees for the five courses will change from $118 o $648 to include the educational package.
Some fees for continuing education courses increased slightly; however, the cost for the truck driving program decreased from $3,795 to $3,620.
Recently, Texas Governor Rick Perry requested state agencies and institutions to submit a 5 percent reduction plan for their budgets for the next two years to prepare for a possible shortfall in state sales tax income.
Due to that request, the board is waiting on a report from the state regarding funding before making a recommendation on tuition rates.
Currently, in-district tuition is $32, out-of-district tuition is $65 and non-resident tuition is $110 per credit hour.
Allbright, ACC Provost and Dean of Instruction Dr. John Bethscheider and Dean of Academic Programs Dr. Andrew Nelson presented information regarding the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) reaffirmation of accreditation process.
“The goal of accreditation is to ensure that education provided by the college meets acceptable levels of quality,” Allbright expressed. “Accreditation by an accepted agency ensures quality and that we adhere to certain academic standards.”
“This is the most important thing we do as far as ensuring quality of programs and that the instruction and support of instruction are acceptable and that’s through our accrediting institution,” he continued. “It also lets students know that you are an acceptable institution.”
ACC’s Compliance Certification will be due March 2011, an off-site review will occur May 2011 and an on-site review will be held in the fall of 2011.
The accreditation process is required every 10 years; however, SACS approved a year extension due to the damage ACC sustained during Hurricane Ike in September 2008.
During the president’s report, Allbright presented a 3-minute video created by ACC Broadcast Communications students to honor Army Sgt. James Nolen, of Alvin, who passed away in the line of duty recently.
“You know, I’ve often felt that the hardest things to watch are the most important,” ACC Board Chairman L. H. “Pete” Nash said. “That was hard to watch.”
Allbright also reported that the Campus Police Department will be providing a report in the near future advising on new security measures.
“With the incident in Alabama, it seems that there is more and more trouble on college and university campuses than ever before and we’ve done a number of things here…and we want to bring you up-to-date on some of the new things we’ve done, some of the training exercises that have taken place on campus, actually in the buildings and in the classrooms,” Allbright stated.
During the meeting, regents also approved: appointment of Michael Smith as the new computer science instructor for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice program; Nolan Ryan Center rental report; financial report ending January 2010; and check register.
The next ACC board meeting is scheduled for March 25. ACC will be closed March 15-22 for spring break.