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Board Approves PCEA Contract, Ratifies VP Appointments

The Pennsylvania College of Technology Board of Directors on Thursday approved a five-year contract with the Penn College Education Association, ratified electronic votes for the appointment of three vice presidents and authorized the college to continue operations at current budget levels if there is no 2017-18 state budget passed by June 30.

The PCEA contract approved by the board takes effect in Fall 2018. It runs through the 2022-23 fiscal year. The PCEA has more than 290 members and includes all full-time teaching faculty, librarians and counselors.

Annual salary increases specified in the five-year agreement are: 2018-19, 1.55 percent; 2019-20, 1.65 percent; 2020-21, 1.75 percent; 2021-22, 1.85 percent; and 2022-23, 2 percent.

President Davie Jane Gilmour said there were five negotiating sessions conducted, and the tenor of the discussions remained positive throughout. She said the agreement allows the college to focus on its educational mission and provides stability.

“This is a historic agreement for us,” she said. “This is an agreement we are very proud of.”

Thursday's Board of Directors meeting recapped for college community
Thursday’s Board of Directors meeting recapped for college community

PCEA President Dorothy J. Gerring concurred, adding that PCEA members’ participation in the electronic voting represented an all-time high, with few dissenters.

“This was a really amicable process,” Gerring told the board.

In other business, the board voted to ratify earlier electronic votes approving the appointments of Patrick Marty, vice president for college relations; Loni N. Kline, vice president for institutional advancement; and A.J. Lacomba, vice president for information technology/chief information officer.

In a routine action taken annually at this time, the board authorized the college to continue operations at Fiscal 2016-17 budgeted levels if the state Legislature fails to pass a 2017-18 budget by June 30.

The board also voted to approve an investment policy statement that relates specifically to the college’s employee retirement plans.

Hillary E. Hofstrom, associate vice president for human resources, presented to the board on Title IX and Cleary Act issues and changes. She said the college simplified who it defines as Mandatory Reporters and has enhanced the information they receive about their responsibilities. Systematic training is provided to all employees. Mandatory Reporters receive annual training; other employees are trained on a three-year basis. Hofstrom also discussed the training videos, which have scenarios tailored to higher education and Penn College specifically.

Chief Student Affairs Officer Elliott Strickland presented a PowerPoint to the board on the new Wildcat Athletics logo, which was revealed to the college community Wednesday afternoon. He thanked the members of the committee that guided the design process. Strickland took the board through that process and described the origin of various elements for the design, which was completed by Skye Dillon, of the New Jersey-based Skye Design Studios.

Tom Gregory, associate vice president for instruction, provided updates on approved new academic majors including Concrete Science Technology (Fall 2018), Entrepreneurial Innovation (Fall 2018), Applied Innovation (Fall 2017), Physician Assistant Studies (combined bachelor’s-master’s program, Fall 2017) and Metal Fabrication (Fall 2017). A new minor, Business Analytics, is also being offered in Fall 2017.

Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs/provost, informed the board about faculty promotions and sabbaticals for 2017-18.

Full-time faculty approved for promotion, effective with the start of the 2017-18 academic year, are: Pamela W. Baker, nursing programs (School of Health Sciences), from instructor to assistant professor; Carl J. Bower Jr., horticulture (School of Transportation and Natural Resources Technologies), from instructor to assistant professor; Drew R. Potts, civil engineering technology (School of Construction and Design Technologies), from instructor to assistant professor.

Also: Lisa Bock, computer information technology assistant professor (School of Industrial, Computing and Engineering Technologies), from assistant professor to associate professor; Mark A. Ciavarella, business administration/management (School of Business and Hospitality), from assistant professor to associate professor; Dianne M. Eberle, nursing programs (School of Health Sciences), from assistant professor to associate professor; Joanna K. Flynn, mathematics, (School of Sciences, Humanities and Visual Communications), from assistant professor to associate professor; and Dottie M. Mathers, medical-surgical nursing program (School of Health Sciences), from associate professor to professor.

Tim Weston, associate professor of plastics technology, was approved for sabbatical leave in Spring 2018 to advance research and development of instructional materials to support education in injection molding courses in the plastics and polymer engineering technology program.

The next Board of Directors meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 15.