October 2018 Central Connection

September 28, 2018

Fall 2018 enrollment increases at CCC

By Scott Miller
Public Relations and Marketing Director

Central Community College has announced that its total college-wide enrollment for the 2018 fall semester is 6,185, which is up from 5,874 students at the start of the 2017 fall semester. The total is an increase of 5 percent and comprises 2,942 on-campus students and 3,243 distance learning students.

Total enrollment includes on-campus and distance learning students at CCC’s campuses in Columbus, Grand Island and Hastings and centers in Holdrege, Kearney and Lexington.

While college-wide enrollment numbers are unduplicated, the campus breakdowns may vary due to some students taking classes from multiple campuses and centers.

At CCC-Columbus, on-campus enrollment is 863, while distance enrollment is 1,605 for a total of 2,468. That compares to 2,296 for the 2017 fall semester.

The number of on-campus students at CCC-Grand Island is 1,009 and the number of distance learning students stands at 1,653, totaling 2,662. At the same time last year, the total was 2,582.

At CCC-Hastings, there are 998 on-campus students and 1,311 distance learning students for a total of 2,309. For the 2017 fall semester, the total number was 2,324.

“We are very pleased that so many students are realizing Central Community College provides a high-quality and affordable education for students seeking immediate workplace skills as well as a place to begin a four-year degree,” said CCC President Dr. Matt Gotschall. “Additionally, our enrollments will continue to grow over the entire semester as we offer an increased number of workshops and customized training programs for individuals and business throughout the year.”

Among Central Community College’s centers, the Kearney Center saw the most significant increase. The on-campus student population stands at 417, while distance learning students total 368. The combined 785 students for the 2018 fall semester is up from 606 for the 2017 fall semester. The increased enrollment comes one year after the opening of the new 63,000-square-foot Kearney Center.

Campaign hits goal

The Central Community College Foundation has met its $5 million funding goal set for the CCC-Hastings Campus Major Gifts Campaign. The achievement comes six months ahead of schedule, which allows groundbreaking for a 32,000-square-foot renovation of the Hamilton Building to take place this fall instead of next spring.

The Hamilton Building is home to CCC’s advanced manufacturing design technology (AMDT) and welding technology programs.

Construction will begin immediately on a 17,000-square-foot addition on the building’s south side for the AMDT program. A 15,000-square-foot renovation of the existing building for the welding technology program will follow in a year.

Of the project’s $10.3 million cost, $5.3 million will come from college reserves with no long-term debt intended.

Prescription for a new lab, new program

New students are the way to fill that prescription. Making up the first pharmacy technician class at Central Community-Grand Island are (left to right) Isela Escalera-Mercado of Grand Island; Delaney Barr of Wolbach; Zaria Schirmer and Meleny Lopez, both of Grand Island; Eskylen McMahan of Grand Island; Daneecia Thorin of Wolbach; Reece Maske of Shelton; Rachael Amick of Grand Island; Tiernan Mach of Anselmo; and Brett Klima of McCook.


OER textbook saves money

By Joni Ransom
Communications Assistant to the President

A concern over students having to pay for expensive textbooks led Dr. Susan McDowall, an English instructor at Central Community College-Grand Island, to do something about it.

She focused on English 1010: English Composition I, a class taken by an average of 1,010 students during the fall semester and 370 students during the spring semester. Reducing textbook costs in this single class would result in thousands of dollars of savings for CCC students.

McDowall believed the best way to reduce those costs was through open educational resources (OER). Her familiarity with OER began with Project Kaleidoscope, a group of eight partner institutions committed to using only OER in its course designs. Not only does the use of OER reduce the cost of textbooks, but it also gives institutions increased control and creativity in changing materials to match student needs and faculty preferences.

“I love OER textbooks,” McDowall said. “They save students big money.”

So she took a deep breath, dived into the project and made the OER book available as a Google Doc in January so it could be reviewed by fellow English instructors Jim Kosmicki, Grand Island Campus; Chyrel Remmers, Columbus Campus; and the now retired Harry Hamel, Hastings Campus.

“They were able to comment and make changes through March,” McDowall said. “Then I shut the Google Doc down.”

She began transferring the information into Microsoft Word, adding the headings and other items needed to make the textbook accessible and in line with the college’s commitment to universal design.

Jamey Boelhower, former CCC education technology coordinator and integration consultant, took the next step and turned it into a Moodle book.

The result was an OER textbook that became available for the first time this fall, one that is free and searchable in both its PDF and Moodle forms.

McDowall sees only one problem with undertaking the same effort with other textbooks for other classes.

“It took a ton of work to do one textbook for one basic required course, but it will save students in that course thousands and thousands of dollars,” she said. “It’s also sure to help with successful college completion because it means one less barrier to their education.”

Board passes 2018-19 budget

The Central Community College Board of Governors has approved a $72,587,911 budget for 2018-19.

It includes $57,524,948 in the operating fund, a $7,613 decrease from 2017-18; $10,954,882 in the capital improvement fund, a $64,541 decrease from 2017-18; and $4,108,081 in the fund for removal of hazardous materials and compliance with the Americans with disabilities Act (HazMat/ADA), a $24,202 decrease from 2017-18.

The HazMat/ADA and capital improvement funds are supported entirely through property taxes from CCC’s 25-county service area.

Revenue for the operating fund comes from the following sources: property tax, $37,871,510, down $64,541 from 2017-18; state aid, $9,264,576, down $312,331 from 2017-18; and tuition, $9,988,862, down $392,672 from 2017-18.

Other sources of revenue will provide $400,000.

Total property tax, which includes the county treasury collection tax, for the three funds is $53,085,102 as compared with $52,477,342 in 2017-18. The property tax levy for the three funds combined was set at 9.5956 cents per $100 of assessed valuation, up from 9.4302 cents in 2017-18.

Property taxes are based on property valuations for the 25 counties served by CCC, which reported a decrease in total valuation of $325,929,749.

Lux retires

Doris Lux of Columbus has retired as entrepreneurship director and business administration instructor at Central Community College-Columbus.

She began full-time work at the college in 1978 as a business administration and math instructor. Two years later she developed the college-wide cooperative education program and became its director on the Columbus Campus. She ran the program until about 10 years ago when she was asked to put more focus on her entrepreneurship efforts, which included working with businesses in the Columbus area and with high school students.

Lux opened her own business, Red Apple Ceramics in 1979. She now owns RA Glass Jewelry and Market23 Unique Items, Homemade and Homegrown.

Prior to CCC, she taught business and coached volleyball, girls basketball and boys and girls track for two years at Litchfield High School and three years at Hildreth High School.

She is a graduate of Sandy Creek High School in Fairfield who went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in business education and a master’s degree in business vocational education from the University of Nebraska-Kearney.

She is a member of the Nebraska Entrepreneurship Task Force, National Association Community College Entrepreneurship, National Incubator Business Association and Entre-Ed International Association. She also was president and held other offices in each of those organizations.

She is an active member of St. Isidore Parish and has served on the St. Isidore School and Girl Scout boards.

She and her husband, Norman, operate a family farm. They have two children, Crystral McGinnis of Denham Springs, La., and Gary Lux of Bellwood, and two granddaughters.

Events highlight pollinators, manufacturing

Pollinator Festival

The first-ever Pollinator Festival from noon to 5 p.m. on Oct. 13 at Central Community College-Grand Island.

This family-friendly event will feature live music, beekeeping demonstrations, tours of the campus’ pollinator garden, and fun activities for both children and adults. Speakers and vendors will share information about pollinators and the plants that support them, and products will be available for purchase.

Participants may choose from two lecture tracks running simultaneously from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. A panel discussion on “Where do We Go from Here?” will conclude the afternoon.

Featured speakers will be Pete Berthelson, Conservation Blueprint LLC; Dr. Doug Gollick, assistant professor of entomology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln; Elizabeth Killinger, master gardener; Brian Nilson, Nebraska Beekeepers Association; Rae Powers, Xerces Society; and Carol Wienhold, Nebraska Department of Roads.

The event is free thanks to these sponsors: Boy Scouts of America-Overland Trails Council, Crane Trust, Earl May, Garcia Farms, Grain Place Foods, Grand Island Convention and Visitors Bureau, Great Plains Honey Farms/Gold Dust Kettle Corn, Hy-Vee, Kaw Valley Greenhouses, Natural Food Products Inc., Nebraska Statewide Arboretum, Orscheln Farm and Home, Prairie River Honey Farm, Studio K Art Gallery and Vlcek Gardens.

For more information, visit www.cccneb.edu/pollinators.

Manufacturing Day Open House

Central Community College-Columbus will open the doors of its North Education Center to the public from 5 to 8 p.m. on Oct. 18.

The Manufacturing Day Open House is part of the campus’ celebration of Manufacturing Month in Nebraska and is open to people of all ages. Activities will include a hotdog cookout; refreshments; face painting and other activities for kids; and demonstrations of flying ag drones, huge welding robots and pneumatics. Participants can even get their picture taken with R2-D2, a life-sized model built by CCC students.

The main purpose of the open house, though, is to showcase CCC’s skilled and technical programs, which prepare people for high-demand, high-paying STEM careers in welding, mechatronics, agricultural sciences, business and information technology. Participants will be able to visit with leaders from BD, ADM, Central Confinement, Valmont, Cargill and other area industries about their open positions, future needs and company benefits.

Visitors also will have the chance to enter drawings for gift cards from local companies and for five $100 tuition coupons that can be used at CCC-Columbus in 2019.

For more information, contact Elizabeth Fisher at CCC-Columbus at 402-562-1481 or elizabethfisher@cccneb.edu.

Stroman transforms birthday into a giving occasion

Sara Stroman, Project HELP success coach at Central
Community College-Hastings, poses with the 350 items
family and friends donated to the campus’ Food and
Hygiene Pantry. It was her birthday, but it’s CCC
students who will benefit.

How should a woman celebrate when she turns 30 years old?

If you’re Sara Stroman, the new Project HELP success coach at Central Community College-Hastings, you decide to do something special ... for other people.

On a Facebook post, she asked 30 friends to donate three items to the campus’ Food and Hygiene Pantry, but she got far more than 90 items.

Her family and friends showed their support and generosity by donating more than 350 items.

“I was feeling bad about turning 30 so I decided to do something good,” said Stroman. “It turned out even better than I expected.”

Lauren Slaughter, who held Stroman’s position before becoming CCC’s equity and compliance manager, said the pantry’s shelves “went from dwindling to full to start the pantry off the right way (for the new school year).”

She credited Stroman’s kindness and innovation for this special way to celebrate her birthday.

Employee news

Administrative Office

Joni Ransom, communications assistant to the president, received a second place for editing and design in the National Federation of Press Women’s communications contest.

The award was for the redesign of the Fall 2017 Community Connection from a newsletter into a magazine.

The judge commented: “A reader not familiar with Central feels as if the front door has been opened and you are welcome to enter into the college community. One of the most appealing aspects of the layout and overall ‘feel’ is the use of white space. As page counts shrink, it seems as if more text is squeezed onto the page, but this is the opposite. The creative use of white space gives a lighter look and feel to the magazine.”

Columbus Campus

Joining the staff are Anthony Blaser, admissions and recruiting coordinator, and Lenette Sprunk, universal design for learning and assistive technology director.

Grand Island Campus

New employees include Balaji Balasubramaniam and Prashant Magar, information technology instructors.

Terry P. Gallagher, 76, of Cairo died Aug. 26 at his home. Services were Aug. 30 at Cairo United Methodist Church.

He was born March 6, 1942, in Fort Smith, Ark., to John “Jack” and Velda (Kemper) Gallagher. He graduated from St. Mary’s Catholic School in O’Neill and served in the U.S. Air Force from 1961-64.

He married Rita Pease on Jan. 15, 1971, in Grand Island. He worked as a welder at Baasch and Sons Welding of Cairo until retiring in 1995.

He was involved in a variety of emergency medical services (EMS) organizations and activities, including serving as a part-time EMS instructor at the Grand Island Campus for 33 years.

Survivors include his wife; two children, Todd Gallagher of Burwell and Tammy Work of Grand Island; two brothers, Lynn Gallagher of Scottsdale, Ariz., and David Winkler of Burwell; two sisters Rita Jenkins of Hesperia, Calif., and Paula Burns of Gretna; and four grandchildren.

Apfel Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements. Memorials may be given to the Cairo Quick Response Team and the Fire Department. Online condolences may be left at www.apfelfuneralhome.com. 

Hastings Campus

An abstract, “Associate Degree Dental Hygiene Students’ Attitudes Toward Service-Learning,” by Wanda Cloet, dental hygiene program director, was published in the August 2018 issue of the Journal of Dental Hygiene.

Ram Run

Three CCC employees were top finishers in the 36th annual Ram Run and Walk Sept. 8 at the Hastings Campus.

In the 5K race, Meredith Smith, nursing instructor at the Grand Island Campus, took first place with a time of 22.21 in the 40-49 years old division, Billy Dunbar, development director at the CCC Foundation, took second place with a time of 26:38 in the 30-39 years old division, and Lauren Slaughter, equity and compliance manager in the Administrative Office, took third place with a time of 31:56 in the 20-29 years old division.

Race proceeds were donated to the CCC Foundation for student scholarships.