Monthly Archives: February 2018

President Knight speaks with Academic Senate about developmental education resolution

President Brent Knight visited the Academic Senate during its Feb. 16 meeting to discuss the Board of Trustee’s developmental education resolution and answer questions.

He said the resolution, which the Board passed during its January meeting, originated largely with the Board and with him, as well as a “growing groundswell of support for improved student success from many at LCC.” The college plans to implement some changes this fall, and then more by fall 2019.

This fall, President Knight suggested the college establish boot camps to help bring students up to speed quickly. He recommended the boot camps be held at minimal charge to the students, and instead run at a net loss for the college. He asked employees to study boot camps at other colleges across the country, and the college to retain consultants as needed and pay for in-service for faculty teaching these intensive sections.

At the same time, President Knight asked the college to “begin a determined effort to study and design curricula” with embedded support. He stated he wants to start with college-level math, college-level writing, as well as a handful of other gateway college courses chosen by employees. While this will take more time to implement than the boot camps, he said he wants this enriched curricula ready by fall 2019.

President Knight said his overarching redesign goal is to be able to say to the public, “If you take one of these classes at LCC, you will have as good a chance of being successful when compared with any college or university in the nation. We stand by these classes and assure you that you are getting the best.”

One person asked if the Board’s intent was to eliminate developmental education, and President Knight said no. He said the intent is to embed support into classes so students can be more successful.

After the discussion with President Knight, senators and guests continued their small group discussions about how to implement changes to developmental education. Topics included college-level gateway courses and the intake process, default placement into college-level math and English, boot camps and embedded academic support, data, and continued remediation. All employees are welcome to contribute to this conversation by submitting their thoughts on the Senate’s website.

During the meeting, senators also rejected a charter for the Curriculum Committee. Senate leadership is continuing to discuss details of a charter for this important standing committee.

Center for Data Science Executive Director Matt Fall also provided the Senate with an update on the college’s Institutional Review Board, or IRB, which will begin meeting as an official body soon. An IRB is designed to prevent unethical treatment of humans in research studies. More training on what sort of work needs to go before the IRB and what type of project is exempt will be coming in the spring. The IRB webpage is still being built as the group begins its work, but you can learn more or submit a proposal at

The Senate will next meet Friday, March 2, in the West Campus Auditorium. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Board approves 2018-19 course fees, receives updates on financial forecast and tutoring

The Board of Trustees approved 2018-19 course fees, heard an update on the college’s two-year financial forecast, and asked questions about students’ experiences with in-person and online tutoring during its Feb. 19 meeting.

The Board approved course fee recommendations for new courses as well as course fee change recommendations for existing courses. Financial Services and the academic divisions coordinate to assess appropriate course fees for each class. You can find the full list of course fees in this month’s Board packet.

During the meeting, Chief Financial Officer Don Wilske provided trustees with information about the college’s two-year financial forecast. The forecast is continuously adjusted based on new information, but Wilske said the college will have a balanced budget for fiscal year 2019. This is based on a projected 2.6 percent increase in state appropriations, 2 percent increase in property taxes, 3 percent increase in enrollment, $2 tuition increase and a student fee increase. On the expense side, salaries and benefits to employees are expected to rise by 2.5 percent based on current contracts, and services and supplies costs to rise by 3.6 percent. In fiscal year 2020, the college currently is projecting a $2 million deficit, primarily due to no forecasted change in tuition rates.

In addition, trustees asked about the student experience using the Brainfuse online tutoring option as well as the college’s in-person tutoring services. While Brainfuse includes a survey that captures student feedback after tutoring, in-person tutoring currently does not have any method for surveying student feedback. Trustee Andrew Abood asked if in-person tutoring had enough space and time for all students who wanted to access the service, and employees answered not during peak usage times.

Finally, the Board approved:

  • A $2.54 million increase in the amount available for the Business and Community Institute to hire subject matter experts for its instructor pool. The additional funds are needed to support BCI’s increased number of trainings.
  • A renewal of the previously established lease agreement with the City of Lansing for 150 parking spaces in the North Capitol parking ramp. The rate for 2018 parking permits will be $78.50 per parking space each month, and the 2019 parking permits will be $79.50 per parking space each month. This is lower than the public permit rate of $93 per parking space each month.

The Board will next meet Monday, March 19, in the Administration Building Boardroom. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Food pantry emergency needs for February

Cold weather and illnesses have made February a hard month for students. The Stars Helping Stars Food Pantry could use your help in stocking the following items:

  • Canned tomatoes (all types)
  • Spaghetti sauces
  • Cream of mushroom and chicken soups
  • Chunky soups
  • Chicken noodle soup
  • Tomato soup
  • Canned chili
  • Canned ravioli and other pasta dinners
  • Canned fruit
  • Bags of noodles
  • Boxes/bags of macaroni
  • Deluxe boxes of mac and cheese
  • Boxes of saltine crackers
  • Peanut butter
  • Jelly/jam

Entrepreneur YOU coming to West Campus

LCC will host a session of Entrepreneur YOU, a day of education and resources for women entrepreneurs.

The conference by the Michigan Women’s Foundation is designed to educate women through every step of developing and cultivating a business. The event will be held 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Friday, March 9, at West Campus. Tickets are $50 per person and include a conference ticket plus a continental breakfast and lunch. Learn more and register at

A round of Applause! for the Financial Aid Department

This week, we’re applauding the Financial Aid Department.

Our Financial Aid department is great,” wrote Lisa Alexander in the award. “They are always willing to assist student and staff alike to get the right information in a timely manner. They are friendly and care about our students. I am proud to work with these individuals.”

This regular “Applause!” column features the good work you and your colleagues do around the college. It’s powered by Applause! Awards, an LCC-wide program designed to recognize you for providing excellent customer service. Know someone who deserves to be featured here? All awards are given by employees, to employees, and everyone is eligible.

In the news

Press clips for the week include: