MCC Board Meeting Report: Dec. 9, 2008

At the Manatee Community College (MCC) District Board of Trustees' regular monthly meeting held Dec. 9 at MCC Bradenton, main items included the bachelor of science in nursing proposal based on the needs analysis report, a surprise honor for a respected legislator, the presentation of a major statewide award, an update on MCC President Dr. Lars Hafner's top 21 initiatives, and a seasonal concert by choral students.

The December meeting also was noted as the trustees' first "hybrid" transitional meeting for board members to experiment with reading documents on individual laptops while having printed materials accessible.

"In January we will go all green and see how it works," Hafner said, referring to the plan to present all board packet material electronically.

The main agenda item for board action was an exhibit seeking the board's approval of a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree proposal. In support of the proposal, Brad Davis, director, resource development, presented highlights from a needs analysis that he conducted with assistance from Dr. Bonnie Hesselberg, dean, nursing and health professions.

A proposed BSN program at MCC drew strong support from seven major area hospitals and strong interest from working RNs and nursing students. The analysis showed an unprecedented immediate need for RNs with a BSN and an equally dramatic level of interest in MCC offering the BSN with 254 eligible nurses or nursing students replying they would be ready immediately to start the program at MCC.

January 2010 is the earliest classes would begin if MCC is approved in spring 2009 to offer the BSN program.

Board members unanimously approved the proposal for submission and trustee Rev. Kelvin Lumpkin suggested that individual trustees write letters of support to area legislators and state education officials.

In other board activity, trustees applauded a surprise presentation to recently retired (due to term limits) state Sen. Lisa Carlton, whose district included MCC. Steve Harner, board chair, and Hafner called six students to join them in presenting Carlton with a medallion in honor of the Lisa Carlton Student Government Association scholarship. See a separate release with more details about the scholarship.

Hafner announced that MCC won several awards at the recent statewide meeting of the Florida Association of Community Colleges. Advisors Heidi Schroeder and Stacey were recognized for their role in developing the "Jump In! High School Senior Spring Break Event" that won the prestigious Chancellor's Award.

Hafner presented an update on his top 21 initiatives addressed during his first six months as MCC president. The president touched briefly on (1) LambdaRail, (2) Thin Client, (3) Live Meeting, (4) Angel training, (5) Online A.A. degree, (6) Signature courses, (7), Volunteer Services, (8) Productivity standards, (9) MCC Venice-related land deals, (10) USF partnership, (11) Voice-Over-Internet-Protocol (VOIP), (12) Budget management and future planning, (13) Status of three to five strategic objectives, (14) Green initiatives, (15) Application for $5 million veterans' program, (16) Four-year degree approval, (17) Amendment 8 opposition, (18) Resubmit five-year CIP, (19) Start-up funding for four-year degree program, (20) Evaluate health care insurance alternatives, (21) Become a fit-friendly company.

More information will be provided in coming months on these initiatives.

Trustees were reminded that the January meeting will be held at MCC Bradenton and the February meeting will be at MCC Lakewood Ranch.

Read more, see photos and listen to the MCC choir in the Bradenton Herald article MCC Approves Four-year Nursing Program.

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