Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC)

Community College of Allegheny County

College Council Meeting Minutes October 8, 2009

October 8, 2009
Office Of College Services Board Room





Richard Allison
Maryann Anderson
Mary Frances Archey
Joyce Breckenridge
Yvonne Burns
Toni Carney
Mary Ellen Driver
John Dziak
Carl Francolino
Rita Gallegos
Donna Imhoff
Joanne Jeffcoat
Dan Maddox
Maura Stevenson
Barbara Thompson
Stephen Wells 

Charles Martoni

Rich Betters
Mary Lou Kennedy
Gretchen Mullin-Sawicki

Maryann Anderson, College Council Chair, called the meeting to order at 2:33 PM.


Rick Allison made a motion to approve the minutes of the Aug. 27th, 2009 meeting of College Council. Mary Ellen Driver seconded the motion.  The minutes were approved as amended.



Joanne Jeffcoat reported that the Subcommittee met twice to discuss the academic calendar and Fran Dice attended both meetings.  During the first meeting the Subcommittee had an opportunity to debate the calendar and the second meeting was the hearing. Fran Dice will attend the next meeting of College Council during which Council will discuss and vote on the calendar.  Steve Wells mentioned that there are significant changes to the summer schedules in the proposal. 


Proposal: Audit Form and Procedure
Gretchen Mullin-Sawicki presented the proposal which details new procedures for auditing a course as well a form which details specific conditions to be determined by the faculty member. Dr. Mullin-Sawicki noted that Allegheny Campus uses a form, but the other 3 campuses do not. This form and procedures will provide consistency.

Barbara Thompson pointed out that the new requirement that a student who audits a course and wants to register at a later date must wait 4 years before they can take the course was excessive.  Dr. Mullin-Sawicki said that the Dean’s committee felt it gave the student an unfair advantage if they could first audit the class. This would allow students who could afford the cost of auditing, as well as the time, more of an advantage over students who couldn’t. It was pointed out that Butler, Beaver, Westmoreland, Harrisburg and Philadelphia Community Colleges do not have such a restriction which was unnecessarily punitive.  Dr. Mullin-Sawicki agreed to eliminate this restriction.

Other features of the form and process include a section for the instructor to detail attendance and testing requirements, a limit of 4 times that a class can be audited, and a clear statement that pre-requisites must be met.

Yvonne Burns asked that the bottom of the form include in bold letters information regarding financial aid. Students who receive financial aid should contact the Financial Aid Office before changing a class from credit to audit. This could jeopardize a student’s financial aid status.

Joanne Jeffcoat made a motion to accept the proposal. Rita Gallegos seconded the motion and the motion passed unanimously.

Proposal: Update Drug and Alcohol Policy for Students 
The proposal was initiated by Financial Aid Directors and presented by Mary Lou Kennedy. Dr. Kennedy explained that last Spring during a PHEAA audit, the College was cited because our drug and alcohol policy wasn’t specific enough. The proposed language is what PHEAA suggested except for some references to CCAC.

Toni Carney distributed Policies and Regulations from the Student Handbook, and Council discussed where the new policy might appear.  The full policy will appear in the Policies and Regulations section while a sentence referencing the full policy will be added to the Improper Behavioral Conduct section.

Toni Carney relayed a concern brought up at the Academic Standards/Student Affairs Subcommittee by a guest in attendance at the hearing.  The concern is that a student may be placed in jeopardy according to the drug and alcohol policy if he/she attends a College-sponsored function where alcohol is available.  Examples of events included the Dean’s List Reception, the Legends Dinner, non-credit wine tasting classes, and the Culinary Arts Program.

College Council discussion produced the following:

1.       There is no alcohol served or accessible at the Dean’s List Reception.

2.      The Legends Dinner is a Foundation event.

3.      Wine-tasting classes use minimal alcohol under strict supervision.

4.      The Culinary Arts Program alcohol is under lock and key and is only used for cooking purposes under strict supervision.

Toni will relay this information to the Academic Standards/Student Affairs subcommittee.

Joanne Jeffcoat made a motion to accept the proposal. Carl Francolino seconded the motion and the motion passed unanimously.


Carl Francolino reported that the Subcommittee has met twice. At the first meeting, Mary Kate Quinlan reported on assessment. There was also a discussion on the periodic review for Middle States which is due 2011. The writing will start 2010.

The Oct 1st meeting focused on distance learning. The Scheduling Task Force which is charged to investigate the way distance learning courses are to be listed either alphabetically by Campus as is the current practice or another way has formed.  The Committee consists of Donna Imhoff (Chair), Dwight Bishop, Rod Farkas from North, Tony Lucas from Allegheny, Tom Turich from South, and Sulakshana Plumley from Boyce.  The report is due to the President at the end of February.

At that same meeting, Dwight Bishop reported that distance learning enrolment is exploding. Since Fall 2008, the headcount has increased 20.8% and registration has increased 22.6%. The biggest concern is the condition of the current server. If we can keep it running until the Holidays, we should be OK.

Mr. Francolino discussed topics that the Subcommittee would like to consider. They include: 

·         How effective early intervention is.

·         The use of media production to show students what a typical distance learning course is like.

·         More information literacy so that students will leave the College as life-long learners. He noted the tutorial that the Librarians have put together regarding using the library’s online catalog and databases. Mr. Francolino said that a good professional development goal would be to include more information literacy assignments in our courses. Mary Ellen Driver expressed a desire to have a Librarian as a member of the Subcommittee.


Proposal: Food Service, Lodging and Recreation Management Programs
Maura Stevenson reported that this proposal was heard last week, and is very straight forward. Gretchen Mullin-Sawicki presented the proposal which corrects the name of the Foodservice Program and all references to it as one word, “Foodservice” as opposed to “Food Service.” The one word reference is an industry standard. Also, a sequencing error has existed for many years and this proposal corrects that so the sequencing is aligned with practice. The sequencing errors appear on pages 6, 13 and 19 of the proposal.

Donna Imhoff made a motion to accept the proposal. Toni Carney seconded the proposal and the proposal passed unanimously.


Experimental Course Request Form
Feb. 26th, 2009, College Council approved the procedure for experimental courses. To accompany this process is a form which has been worked on by Rick Allison and Rich Betters. Rick Allison presented the form to Council. There is no content change on the form and everything has been integrated to fit on a single sheet form.

Dan Maddox made a motion to accept the form. Rita Gallegos seconded the motion and the motion passed unanimously. 

Rick Allison and Rich Betters will talk to Amanda Lawson about where to place the form on the website, either with the Curriculum Committee forms or on the AFT website.

FA Link Deferred Until Fall 2010
Joyce Breckenridge updated Council on the Financial Aid Link. At the March 26, 2009 meeting of College Council, a Financial Aid Refund Process was approved by Council which included a software package to interface with Datatel. It would permit students on Financial Aid to purchase books using a draw account against their Financial Aid. There has been a delay in getting the process going. There are questions that remain regarding the software and how it incorporates with the process. There also needs to be time to familiarize students with the new process. It should be ready to be implemented Fall 2010.


Email Links on CCAC Website
Barbara Thompson pointed out that there are no email links for administrators that sit on College Council or on the Subcommittees, whereas all faculty members have email links.  She wondered if there was a reason for this. Since no one knew, Mrs. Thompson will link all administrators on College Council and the Subcommittees.

Mrs. Thompson also congratulated Steve Wells for putting all of the Academic Planning Subcommittee meeting minutes onto the College Council website. It was a huge job.

Program Review Report
Mary Frances Archey distributed the Appendix A Program Review edits for 2009-2010.

She also distributed a report which details all of the Program/Discipline Reviews advanced by the Academic Planning Committee between Oct., 2004 and Oct., 2008.  There were 252 recommendations advanced for 95 disciplines/programs reviewed. The recommendations are listed and the comments or actions are detailed. 

Next Meeting
The next meeting of College Council is scheduled for Oct. 22nd.  However, because of the many people attending the risk management training that day, there would not be a quorum for the meeting. Therefore Council will meet on October 29th instead.

There being no further business, the meeting ended at 4:20 PM.

Respectfully submitted,
Barbara Thompson
College Council Secretary