College Fair to be Held at Southwestern

CRESTON, September 23, 2009 – The Iowa Association for College Admissions Counseling (IACAC) will sponsor a College Fair from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. on Monday, September 28, at the Southwestern Community College gymnasium.

High School Students Invited to SmartStart Kickoff at Southwestern

CRESTON, September 22, 2009 – Southwestern Community College will sponsor the 2009 SWCC SmartStart Kickoff for high school students from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Monday, September 28. 

The open house will be a great chance for high school sophomores, juniors and seniors to check out SWCC!  Students will be able to sit in on an Arts & Sciences class, visit program areas, talk with instructors and students, and tour the residence halls.  High school students in attendance will receive lunch, a SWCC T-shirt and the opportunity to win door prizes, including an iPod Shuffle!  Southwestern will be awarding two $250 scholarships to senior attendees.

SmartStart Kickoff Tentative Schedule
10:00 a.m. – Registration
10:30 a.m. – General Session
10:45 a.m. – Exploration Session I – Arts & Sciences Class & Residence Halls
11:30 – a.m. Lunch (music, inflatable jousting, etc)
12:00 – p.m. Exploration Session II – Career & Technical Education Program and Career Services
12:45 – p.m. Closing Session (door prizes, etc.)
1:00 – p.m. (Iowa Association for College Admission Counseling) College Fair

The open house will coincide with the Creston College Fair, sponsored by the Iowa Association for College Admissions Counseling, which will be held following the event from 1:00-2:30 p.m.

For more information or to register for the SmartStart Kickoff, please contact Lisa Carstens, Southwestern’s admissions coordinator, at (641) 782-1453 or (800) 247-4023, extension 453.


Southwestern Community College Enters Transfer Student
Partnership with Graceland University

Presidents signing agreementSEPTEMBER 7, 2009, Creston, IA – The presidents of Graceland University (GU) and Southwestern Community College (SWCC) met September 4, 2009, to make official a new partnership that will benefit SWCC students preparing to transfer to Graceland upon graduation.

AUGUST 12, 2009— The Southwestern Community College (SWCC) board of directors met Tuesday, August 11, 2009, in the administration center on the Creston campus.
Construction of a new apartment-style dormitory on campus was again a topic on the board agenda.  The board adopted the proposed plans for construction of a new residence hall and scheduled a public hearing for September 8, 2009, at 5:30 p.m. in the board room at Southwestern Community College.

Prior to the board’s approval, the college administration had presented on the need for additional student housing on SWCC’s campus.  Matt Thompson, SWCC dean of student services, reported that as of May 15, 2009, the college’s residence halls were full for fall 2009 semester.  Currently, the SWCC dorms have a capacity of 116 students.  For fall 2009, there are 152 students who have applied to live in the dorms.  

Following Thompson’s presentation, Teresa Krejci, SWCC chief financial officer, covered the financial aspects of the project.  Krejci stated that revenue bonds and possibly a no-interest loan from CIPCO would be used to finance the residence hall.  The college is also eligible to apply for Build America Bonds.

Tom Lesan, SWCC vice president of economic development, showed the board initial drawings of the building.  This residence hall would be similar floor plan to Spartan Suites.  The goal is to have the project completed for the fall 2010 semester.  Contractors may contact the architect directly if they are interested in the project.

Lesan also reported on the remodeling project currently taking place at the college’s technical center.  The targeted completion date for this project is November 2009.

The board approved the employment of Elizabeth Hensley for the position of nursing instructor for the 2009-10 academic year.  Hensley was hired at a salary of $37,847 for a 194-day contract.  Most recently, Hensley was a registered nurse for Adair County Health Systems.  She has served as a nursing clinical instructor for Southwestern, as well as Kaplan University in Des Moines. 

During the president’s report, Matt Thompson, SWCC dean of student services, explained the new College Experience Course to the board.  This course is an eight-week course designed to give SWCC students strategies for creating success in college and in life.  All new SWCC students will be required to enroll in the course.  The class will meet twice each week and will provide students with information on financial aid, career services, and support services available at the college.


Southwestern’s Board of Trustees Holds July Meeting

JULY 15, 2009, Creston, IOWA — The Southwestern Community College board of directors met via telephone Tuesday, July 14, 2009, at 8:15 a.m.

During the meeting, Dr. Barb Crittenden, SWCC president, told the board of directors the college administration has been researching the feasibility of building additional on-campus housing facilities on the Creston campus. 

Matt Thompson, SWCC dean of student services, spoke about concerns with the amount of housing currently available to SWCC students and said it can be detrimental to recruiting if on-campus housing is not available for students. Thompson stated there is already a waiting list of approximately 20 individuals for on-campus housing for the fall 2009 semester.  Thompson said in a recent housing survey, 72 percent of SWCC students surveyed said SWCC is in need of addition housing facilities. 

Following Thompson’s report on housing needs, Teresa Krejci, SWCC chief financial officer, explained potential funding possibilities for the building.  Krejci has been looking in-depth at funding options such as revenue bonds and is confident the new facility would cash flow similar to SWCC’s most recent housing facility—the Spartan Suites, which was built in 2005. 

Tom Lesan then spoke to the board about what the housing facility will look like.  Lesan said the college administration is looking at a 72-unit, three-story, apartment-style facility similar in construction to the Spartan Suites.  The building will likely be located on the rise just west and a little south of the Spartan Suites, making the facility visible from Townline Street.  Lesan is hoping construction could start as soon as fall 2009 with the facility being completed for occupancy during the 2010-11 school year.

Crittenden explained to the board no action was immediately necessary on the housing topic, and said more information will be on the board’s August agenda.

Thompson reported on the college’s summer enrollment.  During the summer 2009, the college has had an increase of nine students from summer 2008.  The nine students translate to an increase of 34 credit hours.

In personnel, the board approved the resignation of Suzanne Carlson, SWCC nursing instructor.  Advertising for Carlson’s replacement is underway with the hope of having a new instructor in place for the start of the school year.

In other business, the board approved the college’s dues of $3,126 to the Higher Learning Commission, SWCC’s external accrediting body.