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Technology key at Iowa Lakes

By Staff | Sep 16, 2009

Just as Iowa Lakes Community College was a pioneer in distance learning in the 1990s, it continues to lead the way in distance learning.

That was the message the Iowa Lakes Community College Board of Trustees received during the Iowa Lakes report at the board’s monthly meeting Tuesday. Featured in this month’s report was Theresa Zeigler, director of distance and global education.

Joining the Iowa Lakes staff 16 years ago, Zeigler is also assistant director of the Iowa Community College Online Consortium.

Iowa Lakes and the consortium are far ahead of other educational institutions throughout the country because the nature of community colleges is the ability to adapt to new ways of learning, Zeigler said.

Zeigler gave an overview of eCollege, the presentation platform that the consortium offers. She also discussed faculty training and how mediums are blended through various media, including television and online.

Zeigler told how Iowa Lakes faculty are going to the students and adapting teaching styles to meet student needs for alternative presentation platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Cell phones, until now considered a classroom nuisance, may also find a role as education adapts to changing student learning styles.

In other business, the board approved two board policy revisions, one changing board terms from three to four years and the other to make accommodations to change the venue of board meetings for persons with disabilities if the board is given 48 hours notice. The policy change addressing board terms is to conform with Iowa code.

The board held second reading of the missing student notification policy. And, in the foundation update, Jolene Rogers, executive director of institutional advancement, discussed the upcoming car cruise. Rogers also asked the board to accept the donation of a 1988 Caterpillar loader valued from $25,000 to $60,000 and the board agreed. The machine was donated by Jordan and Sons of Lenox.

In the Iowa Lakes report Jane Campbell, executive director of marketing, noted fall enrollment is up. Campbell also noted that faculty member Carol Hartig was named top educator of the year by the American Association of Medical Assistants. Campell touched on the Farm Field Day and Expo in Emmetsburg last Thursday, said Emmetsburg dorms are filled and that the first coffee house will be held in October and the public is invited.

In the facilities update Delaine Hiney, executive director of facilities management, discussed how the college is exceeding environmental standards for colleges in addition to offering environmentally conscious academic programs. She also reviewed the college’s H1N1 preparedness plan.

The board approved the personnel/consent agenda as presented by Kathy Muller, director of human resources.

In the financial report, Robert L’Heureux, chief financial officer, noted the significant progress the college has made in going from a $445,000 budget deficit at the end of the 2008 school year to a $42,244 surplus in the 2010 budget. He cautioned though that the college needs to be aware of declining state revenues and that federal stimulus money will not be guaranteed for 2011.

In a moving statement, Lynn Kueck, one of two outgoing board members, thanked everyone for being given the chance to serve on the board for 32 years.

“That’s half of my life. Half of my heart will remain here,” Kueck said.