The Southwestern Community College (SWCC) board of trustees met for their regular meeting on Tuesday, August 9, 2022, at 5:30 p.m., in the Administration Center board room on the SWCC Creston campus.

Dr. Tony Cass of Creston, president of the SWCC board of trustees, began action items with the discussion of filling the District 7 position on the board. The District 7 position was vacated with the resignation of Vicki Sickels of Mount Ayr, at the July 2022 board meeting. Sickels and her husband are relocating to the Des Moines area.

Cass said following an interview with the board member appointment committee—made up of Cass; Jerry Smith, board member of Osceola; and Fred Shearer, board vice president of Corning—the committee recommended the appointment of Amy Mobley (pictured at right) of Maloy to the open District 7 position. Mobley is the chief nursing officer at Ringgold County Hospital in Mount Ayr. 

Cass said the group had a nice interview with Mobley and they felt she would be an excellent addition to the board. Following Cass’s presentation, the board approved the appointment of Mobley. She will serve in the District 7 position until the next regular election. 

The SWCC board approved the college’s Five-Year Facilities Plan as presented. During discussion, Kevin Britten of Red Oak, SWCC board of trustees member, asked about changes and updates in the plan. 

Barb Godden, SWCC vice president of institutional effectiveness, said the college would be exploring the possibility of utilizing solar and wind energy to supplement the college’s energy costs. Godden said there are certain areas on campus where other energy options might be better sources. Dr. Marjorie McGuire-Welch, SWCC president, added that charging stations for vehicles have been identified as a future need to be explored as well, due to the popularity of electric cars. Godden said a committee would be appointed to look at energy options and further develop the Five-Year Facilities Plan.

Smith asked about the availability of Accelerated Career Education (ACE) Funds from the state when looking at some of these options. The ACE program assists Iowa’s community colleges in establishing or expanding programs that train individuals in the occupations most needed by Iowa businesses. McGuire-Welch said ACE Funds are still available and that the college has carried them over for the past few years so a multi-year request would be a possibility when the college is ready to apply.

In personnel, the board approved the appointment of two new faculty members for the 2022-23 academic year:

  • Amy Johnson-Oxenford, English instructor. Johnson-Oxenford comes to SWCC from Des Moines Area Community College where she has been an adjunct instructor since 2015. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from Creighton University; a Master of Arts in English from Creighton University; and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Simpson College.
  • Luke Nelson, welding technology instructor. Nelson was most recently a welder and fabricator at GehlPRO in Carroll. Prior to that, he taught as an assistant professor at Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs from 2017-21.

During board members’ reports, Smith, SWCC's Community Colleges for Iowa representative, spoke briefly regarding IACCT’s statewide conference held in July in Sioux City.