March 30, 2023, Agenda and Minutes | GCTC

March 30, 2023, Agenda and Minutes

Board of Directors Meeting

Thursday, March 30, 2023, 6:30 p.m.
room B123/Convening Center, Center for Advanced Manufacturing,
500 Technology Way, Florence, KY 41042    

Board Members Present: 
Haley Anderson
John Baines
Dr. Justin Ervin
Erik Hermes
Ruth Howell
Madeline Kues

Board Members Absent: 
Larry Brown
Charlie Coleman
John Hayden

Gateway and KCTCS Faculty and Staff Present:
Phil Dischar, Manager of Media and Marketing
Jane Frantz, Executive Assistant, President’s Office
Dr. Fernando Figueroa, President/CEO
Dr. Denise Fritsch, Dean of Institutional Effectiveness
Christi Godman, Associate Vice President, Workforce Solutions
Amy Hatfield, Associate Vice President, Human Resources
Adrijana Kowatsch, Vice President Development and External Relations
Larry Kraczek, Information Technology Specialist
Michael Orr, Director of Development
Doug Penix, Associate Vice President for Academic Services
Paul Tontillo, Director of Budget & Fiscal Services
Dr. Teri VonHandorf, Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs

Laura Peck, Gateway nursing student
Adam McElhaney, Gateway nursing student 


Chair John Baines called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m. The board recited the Pledge of Allegiance and observed a moment of silence. Roll call was taken. The record will reflect that a quorum was present.

Dr. Figueroa introduced Gateway nursing student Laura Peck to share her Gateway story. She said that she started at Gateway as a dual credit student. She will graduate in May with an Associate in Applied Science in Nursing. Her sister also graduated from Gateway with a nursing degree and went on to earn a bachelor's degree in nursing.  When Laura started at Gateway she had not selected a major, but soon chose nursing and was accepted into the nursing program at the age of 18. She is currently a tutor at Gateway and enjoys working with other students in a variety of programs. Laura credited the hands-on experience she gained in the Gateway nursing program with helping her qualify for the full-time nursing position that she has accepted with St. Elizabeth Hospital. Upon graduation she will begin working on her bachelor’s degree at NKU and plans to have her BSN in 2 years. Gateway is, and has been, a great opportunity for her, her family, and many people she knows.

Chair Baines called for a motion to approve the minutes from the February 9, 2023, meeting. Upon motion by Erik Hermes, and seconded by Madeline Kues, a vote was taken to approve the February 9, 2023, minutes as presented. The vote was unanimous to approve.

A.     Finance and Facilities Committee                                    
Erik Hermes spoke about the schedule the committee will follow to be ready to recommend approval of the 2023-2024 Gateway budget at the May board meeting.

B.     Performance Evaluation of the President Committee               
Chair Baines said that the system office is scheduled to send the evaluation forms this week. He has asked Chuck Session to stay in the role as chair of the committee until Chuck’s replacement is appointed. The evaluation form will be sent to the board members by Chuck, with a due date back to him in mid-April. The committee will summarize the evaluations for approval at the May meeting.         

Chair Baines spoke about the fund balance information from the Kentucky Community & Technical College System (KCTCS) Board of Regents. In his experience all the work on the Gateway Finance committee has been fiscally prudent and transparent. He is looking forward to a formal outcome from the system office review.

Chair Baines said that seeing students achieve their dreams by graduating is a wonderful experience and asked everyone to consider attending the Gateway commencement on May 11th. He asked the board to reflect on their graduation and share what they remembered most about it. Responses included memories of the family and friends who were there to celebrate, feelings of pride and accomplishment, and being happy for family members of first generation college graduates.

Chair Baines asked the board to send him an email to share the Gateway highlights, events, or accomplishments they want to celebrate from the past year on the board.

Dr. Figueroa presented a certificate of completion for the KCTCS GET Inspired professional development series to board member Madeline Kues.  

Dr. Figueroa gave a legislative update, including information on Senate resolution 98, that calls for CPE to study the possibility of a four-year college in Eastern Kentucky and to study the roles of KCTCS and regional universities. Before the senate resolution was introduced, KCTCS began a resource optimization study with Huron. KCTCS has shared and will share more of the information from that study to CPE to help them with their evaluation. Discussion followed which included concern about removing general education from Kentucky’s community & technical colleges and confidence that businesses appreciate that general education skills must accompany technical training for a complete workforce. Two other bills that stalled had to do with requiring the FAFSA for high school graduation and moving dual credit tuition into statute. Dual credit rates remain at 50% of the tuition but has to be reapproved at each biennial budget cycle while it is not in statute.

Dr. Figueroa asked Dr. Denise Fritsch to provide an update on the alignment and metrics for the strategic plan. Dr. Fritsch spoke about the baseline data and metrics for the key performance indicators identified for each of the four goals of the strategic plan - accessible, supportive, relevant, and sustainable.  She provided a document that showed how the Gateway goals are aligned with the strategic plan goals of KCTCS and the Council on Post-secondary Education (CPE). Chair Baines will be chairing the Strategic Planning Development committee, and will receive quarterly updates to share with the board. Discussion included the source of the data and the possibility of leading indicators.  

Dr. Figueroa introduced Paul Tontillo to give a budget update. Paul Tontillo said that results for spring continue to look as strong as the fall semester was. The Workforce Trains funding concern mentioned at the last board meeting has improved. Strong revenue is offset by a $450K risk from an increase in student bad debt and tuition waivers for dual credit students. Paul also gave a performance based funding update with an overview of the funding model. The key drivers are course completion, student success in the form of credentials, maintenance & operations, academic support, and institutional support. Gateway continues with successful efforts that resulted in adding $110,000 for fiscal year 2023-24. He spoke about the Gateway fund balance with an explanation of how it will be used, how it is tracked, and key messages. It can be used to offset a temporary dip in revenue and for non-recurring expenses that are made as investments for future programming or initiatives. Gateway’s fund balance was constant before Covid and increased during Covid from federal stimulus funds. Gateway does not intend to stay at the highest level of the fund balance. Leadership has been planning investment expenditures over the next years to sustainably arrive at a standard balance, while growing programs with the investments. Discussion included a comparison of the use of fund balance dollars and Foundation funds for college initiatives.  

Dr  Figueroa concluded the President’s report by requesting assistance from the board in referring instructors. Gateway is particularly looking for diesel mechanics and allied health instructors. He gave an update on the system office transferring searching for the next KCTCS president instead of an interim president. Dr. Larry Ferguson remains the acting president. Dr. Figueroa will send his outcomes document to the board for their use in evaluating his performance for the year.   

Chair Baines called the meeting adjourned at 7:31 p.m.

Prepared by Ms. Jane Frantz, Recording Secretary

Important Dates to Remember

Board Meetings 2023 - May 18, September 7, October 19, November 30