Trustees Approve Addition of Athletic Programs to Grow Enrollment

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 John Wood Community College Trustees, meeting in regular session Wednesday, October 18, in Quincy approved expanding intercollegiate athletic programs to grow enrollment.

In the fall of 2018, JWCC will add women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s soccer to its existing men’s and women’s basketball, baseball and softball programs.

“Our board wants us to remain a progressive institution and find ways to grow enrollment given that 55 percent of our revenue comes directly from tuition,” Michael Elbe, JWCC president said.  “Expanding athletics is one of many initiatives we are pursuing to grow enrollment, expand student engagement and respond to the community’s request to provide more opportunities for students to enhance the overall college experience.”

JWCC estimates the new athletic programs will attract an additional 50 students and approximately 1500 credit hours. Funding for athletics, student clubs and organizations, and Student Activity Center comes from the College’s Institutional Student Support Fee based on credit hours enrolled.

“This provides an opportunity to have competitive sports in the fall, in addition to winter and spring, plus helps us engage with more students at district high schools and beyond,” Cody Baggett, JWCC dean of students shared.  “As our in-district high school population demographics and needs shift, we need to provide more reasons for students to choose JWCC. The more students we have from our district and beyond helps the College grow and maintain quality education at the most affordable price for everyone.”

 The College expects to search and hire part-time coaches in the next 60 days. After coaches are hired, recruitment for scholarship and walk-on athletes will begin to field teams for the competitive 2018 fall sports seasons.

“We’re excited to attract the best coaches to recruit, evaluate and enroll the highest quality student-athletes who will add value to their programs, JWCC athletics, the College and the community as a whole,” Brad Hoyt, JWCC director of athletics shared.

Also during the meeting Trustees heard a special report on JWCC’s high school graduate market share and marketing efforts. Dean of Enrollment Services Melanie Lechtenberg shared that JWCC enrolled 31 percent of 2017 high school graduates.  Over the last several years, JWCC has consistently enrolled more than 30 percent of graduates from its 14 district high schools.

Barbara Casady, manager of volunteer services, shared with Trustees how the United Way of Adams County supports the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP).  United Way of Adams County’s annual campaign provides funding for RSVP’s medical transportation and shoe fund programs.  Last year, RSVP volunteers transported 449 individuals to appointments and provided 153 pairs shoes to 153 students in need. In Adams, Brown and Pike counties, RSVP coordinates 818 volunteers who perform 124,325 hours of service valued at $2,856,109 by the Independent Sector.

In other business, the Board:

Adopted a resolution declaring the intent to levy the annual equity adjustment for the 2017 tax year as permitted by state statute. JWCC is one of 15 community colleges in the state eligible by law for the adjustment because the College operates at a tax rate below the statewide average.  The maximum adjustment is 7.12 cents per $100 equalized assessed valuation (EAV). The Board announces its intent for the equity adjustment every October prior to its annual levy. The overall tax levy will be discussed at future meetings.

Approved a resolution to abate the 2017 tax levied to pay General Obligation Bonds (Alternate Revenue Source), Series 2012 used to fund energy efficiency projects.  JWCC has sufficient funds from operations for the annual payment of the principal and interest on these bonds.  As a result, the counties of Adams, Pike, Hancock, Calhoun, Schuyler, Brown, Morgan, Scott and Cass will not collect approximately $95,000 for payment in 2017.

Approved an average 3.5 percent increase in premium costs for the College and JWCC employees to cover rising costs of services.

Approved extension of the College’s holiday closure period by four days from January 2-5, 2018. 

Accepted and filed the 2017 audit conducted by WIPFLi, LLP. WIPFli noted that JWCC has complied with government accounting practices and has exercised proper internal controls. 

Approved the 2019-2020 College calendar.

Accepted $46,812 in grant funding from the Illinois Department on Aging based on the volunteer hours performed by the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP). Funds support RSVP staff and operations.

The next regular meeting of the JWCC Board of Trustees is set for November 15 at 7 p.m. at the campus in Quincy.


John Wood Community College is the educational link between business and community. JWCC collaboratively creates innovative and relevant academic and training programs with business leaders to educate young people and the workforce for today’s needs and tomorrow’s opportunities. JWCC has centers in Quincy, Pittsfield, Baylis and Mt. Sterling, Illinois. Programs include a comprehensive baccalaureate transfer curriculum, customized business training, career/technical degrees and certificates and personal enrichment courses.

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