OGLESBY — Illinois Valley Community College’s board approved $2.5 million in Protection, Health and Safety (PHS) projects Oct. 12 including a security camera upgrade, new seating for the Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre and exterior stair improvements.
Projects include replacement of 141 analog cameras with digital units and the addition of 35 cameras for $1.4 million. At a recent facilities committee meeting, college architect Dominick Demonica said the analog cameras, installed around 2000 utilizing the original phone system, are obsolete.
Accessibility renovations for the Weeg Cultural Centre include removal of two non-functioning partitions, seat replacement and construction of ramps on each side of the stage to allow stage access without use of a lift.
Demonica said the improvements will provide dedicated ADA spaces, ADA-compliant stage access and enhanced safety lighting. Removal of the partitions, once used to divide the 600-seat auditorium into three separate rooms for large classes, will enhance access between the center of the theater and its side sections.
The $867,556 project will be funded through previous PHS projects completed under budget and $257,000 from the Walter Durley and Hazel Marie Boyle bequest, which had already financed wall treatments and major lighting improvements.
The college will also replace deteriorating exterior concrete steps and railings at three courtyard entryways to the lower level for $234,429.
In other business, the board authorized President Jerry Corcoran to begin preparing the 2017 tax levy.
The board also approved:
• Two new certificates for the Early Childhood Education program, Infant/Toddler Gateways Credential levels 2 and 3. The certificates help align IVCC’s program with four-year institutions, streamline student transferability and creates a more credentialed workforce. “These state-approved credentials will benefit not just the student but their employers as well,” said Tammy Landgraf, ECE program coordinator.
• A website Content Management System (CMS) contract with iFactory of Boston for $108,500.
• High deductible health plan-health savings account contributions for full-time employees. On Jan. 1, 2018, the college will contribute $2,500 for individual coverage and $5,000 for “employee plus one” and family coverage.
• Luke Holly of Granville as winning bidder at $308.25 per acre or $45,929.25 annually for the cash farm lease for 149 acres of college farmland. Holly replaces previous tenant farmer Chris Kolodziej of LaSalle. “Chris was a tremendous partner to work with the past four years,” said Corcoran. “His willingness to work with on us on the resurgence of our agriculture program has been sincere and unwavering.”
• The annual $10,000 transfer from the Education Fund for the federal Student Support Services (TRiO) grant that supports IVCC’s Project Success program for low-income, first generation and disabled students.
• Renewal of Nebraska Book Company’s maintenance agreement for the bookstore’s point of sale and inventory software for $11,496.
The board learned:
• James Niessner has been hired as computing and audio/visual specialist; Tonya Bland as third shift custodian; and Steve Mazzorana as programmer/analyst. Assistant women’s basketball coach Sammy Kromm has resigned.
• Corcoran recognized electronics instructor Jim Gibson for the role he and others played years ago in contributing to the successful partnership that’s in place with the National Electrical Contractors Association and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 176 which allows apprentice graduates to earn the AAS in electrical construction technology.
• Corporate sponsorships are available for theatre and musical productions at these levels: Headliner, $1,500; Stagehand, $750; Spotlighter, $500; Customer, $400; Marquee Club, $250-$399; Front Row Center, $150-249; and Stage Door, $75-$149.
• In a campus update, Director of Human Resources Leslie Hofer said IVCC filled 10 full-time positions in fiscal 2017 including four faculty, four administrators and two support staff. Of full-time employees departing IVCC last year, 50 percent retired and 15 percent sought other employment opportunities.
• Illinois Valley Labor Management will hold a business afterhours at IVCC March 8, the night before IVCC’s annual career expo.
• The third annual IVCC Athletics Trivia Night Sept. 30 raised $9,720. Trustee Amy Boyles’ team won the contest and donated their winnings back to athletics.
• A total of 20 high school counselors representing 11 district schools attended IVCC’s annual Counselor Connection Oct. 5.
• The IVCC Foundation’s 21st annual scholarship recognition reception Sept. 28 attracted a crowd of 400 including scholarship recipients, family members and donors.
• The Results Companies, a call-center employer in Streator, held its graduation ceremony in IVCC’s Dr. Mary Margaret Weeg Cultural Centre Oct. 7 to recognize 63 employees who completed a one-year training session focusing on customer service and sales. The program is part of a new partnership between Results University and IVCC’s Continuing Education Center.
• The college will host a ceremony to officially name the pre-function area and CTC124-125 the Ralph Scriba Conference Center at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 23. Scriba will witness the ceremony live from his California office via Zoom technology. A Troy Grove native and 1951 graduate of LPO JC, Scriba has donated $250,000 to IVCC for special causes since 2013.