Strategic Plan: Learn Forward 2013-16
Year 2 Status Report
Year 2 of Lansing Community College's Learn Forward Strategic Plan saw significant progress across each of the six areas of focus - competitiveness and innovation; engaged learning; students success; community engagement; leadership, culture, and communication; and resource management and fiscal responsibility. Learning remains at the heart of LCC's efforts with the Operation 100% initiative serving as further dedication to the institution's commitment to prioritize students and their success above all else. LCC continues to be the best education value in our service area while engaging in mutually beneficial partnerships with business, industry, and our local school districts.
Areas of Strategic Focus
A-133 External Audit FY15
LCC successfully set and met two goals for its FY15 A-133 external audit - to achieve an unmodified ("clean") opinion and to have no findings or questioned costs.
LCC is actively evaluating and adjusting the student advising process to incorporate best practices and align with other institutional initiatives – Operation 100%, Guided Pathways, and CRM – for a fully collaborative effort that best serves students. Comprehensive training and regular meetings are required of all faculty who participate in advising. All students receive a personalized one-semester Success Plan (Education Plan) during their orientation. Advisors then follow up with the student before completion of their first semester, where the student will receive a full life-cycle plan.
LCC hired four Academic Success Coordinators in February 2016 to further advance this initiative. The hires allow LCC to properly implement an individualized case-by-case approach and better leverage the early alert function within CRM once integrated. These coordinators will work closely with Academic Advisors, Counselors, and any department that provides support services to students
Via MyLCC and Degree Works, students can see their plans and perform what-if scenarios to see how close or far they might be from receiving a certificate or degree in another program of student.
Applause! Employee Recognition Program
LCC launched an informal employee recognition program Applause! in October that is open to all employees, including student employees. Designed to recognize those who provide exception customer service, recipients are showcased in The STAR e-newsletter and entered for a monthly gift drawing.
Coalition for College and Career Readiness
LCC launched the Coalition for College and Career Readiness (C3R) to ascertain the gap between high school and first-year college and career readiness skills, increase academic success for PK through post-secondary, improve college readiness, and reduce the number of high school students in the tri-county area requiring developmental coursework. The C3R’s efforts (lcc.edu/k12/c3r) are vast and ongoing.
Community Engagement Surveys
LCC administered various surveys to better understand and communicate our community engagement/impact. Surveys included an Employer Survey to determine the degree to which regional employers feel LCC graduates are prepared; a Diversity and Inclusion Survey to regional employers to ascertain areas of interest in relations to diversity and inclusion training; an internal survey to LCC employees to determine their community involvement; and an external Community Survey to determine how the community feels LCC improves the economic well-being of Lansing.
Classroom in a Minute videos
Expanded on Year 1 pilot with a series of short videos designed to provide students with a taste of particular courses before enrolling. The project allows students to engage with LCC in a 24/7 virtual climate. Produced by Media Services, the video series includes nearly 30 videos housed on the LCC YouTube site and embedded through lcc.edu. Some videos have received nearly 800 views with the largest audience ages 18-34, 53 percent female and 85 percent of total traffic from within Michigan.
Constituent Relation Management (CRM)
The Constituent Relations Management system is a technology solution currently in the implementation stage. CRM, in conjunction with other institutional initiatives, will help LCC diversity our student population as well as attract, retain, and graduate more students.
CRM performs many functions and is the vehicle where the new predictive analytic admissions application will be housed. It will allow LCC to identify student risk factors prior to enrollment and will help put the proper interventions in place proactively. CRM also a recruitment feature that will allow LCC to become very strategic in recruitment efforts. It has the ability receive data from numerous sources on a wide variety of indicators that will allow Student Affairs and Marketing to develop strategic, targeted efforts toward improved recruitment and retention goals.
Discussions between the Dean of Student Affairs, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Diversity Officer, and Executive Director for the LCC Foundation to determine how institutional and philanthropic scholarships support these strategic, targeted efforts are ongoing.
CRM also offers an early alert feature faculty and staff can activate to flag a student that has gone off track. Criteria for what constitutes "off track" is being developed by a cross-functional team of faculty, administrators, and staff. Criteria will likely includes factors like failing grades, poor attendance, behavioral problems, etc. Once a student is flagged, Academic Success Coordinators are notified to establish a personal connection to provide appropriate advice and connect the student with available resources to get back on track to success.
Domain-Of-One's-Own student blogs
The Domain-Of-One's-Own (DoOO) initiative provides LCC students with blogs on their own unique URL in order to develop their digital identities and digital citizenship through pilot using Jim Luke’s ECON 260 spring course. Students were given assignments to be executed through the blogs. Like any experimental pedagogy, there was learning by both the professor and students. A strong student interest was demonstrated, as well as improved writing through an informal assessment. Professor Luke shared his experiences at the February 2016 AAC&U conference on Integrated Learning Networks. Continued experimentation and expansion is in development, and will be in collaboration with the in-progress Social Media Policy.
Economic Impact Report
LCC published an Economic Impact Report after administering an economic impact study to demonstrate the college's economic value and vital role in the economic health of the region, and state. Regular follow-ups will help to maintain and better communicate LCC impact and relationship with the community.
Excellence Awards Modification
LCC's Excellence Awards, developed in 2014, were modified to address budgetary limitations. The program consists of 10 award categories with corresponding nomination criteria to be available online. Nominations are scheduled to open in March with selection of award winners to follow. Winners and their guests will be invited to a fall luncheon with an award ceremony to follow that is open to all LCC employees.
Expanded New Administrator Training
New Administrator Training was expanded to also include aspiring administrators, as well as a Motivation, Recognition, and Engagement component. This initiative helps to create a more inclusive LCC culture and strengthen the institution’s succession planning efforts.
Globalization and Diversity
LCC hired Dr. Paul Hernandez as its first Chief Diversity Officer in August with ongoing efforts to strengthen partnerships between LCC, area high schools and transfer institutions, and refocus our efforts on globalization and diversity. Dr. Hernandez regularly meets with faculty - groups and individuals - to provide guidance and support to further integrate globalization and diversity into instruction. Dr. Hernandez also is developing a training series to be offered through the CTE next year for faculty based on teaching the pedagogy of his book "The Pedagogy of Real Talk."
The Academic Senate's Global Learning Committee also has started a review of Guided Pathways for all international students, has ongoing efforts to internationalize campus, and is working toward a plan for a Global Competency Certificate. Committee Chair Cheryl Garayta has attended several conferences and is a member of the Midwest Institute of International Intercultural Education.
Government Finance Officers Association Awards
LCC was honored twice by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA), earning both the 2014 Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for its FY2015 Annual Budget and 2015 Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting.
The Distinguished Budget Presentation Award was established in 1984 to encourage and assist state and local governments to prepare budget documents of the very highest quality that reflect both the guidelines established by the National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting and the GFOA's best practices on budgeting and then to recognize individual governments that succeed in achieving that goal. LCC has received the award every year since 2011.
The Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting (CAFR Program) was established in 1945 to encourage and assist state and local governments to go beyond the minimum requirements of generally accepted accounting principles to prepare comprehensive annual financial reports that evidence the spirit of transparency and full disclosure and then to recognize individual governments that succeed in achieving that goal. LCC has received the CAFR every year since 2011.
LCC has been accepted as one of 12 Michigan community colleges to participate in the first cohort of the Michigan Center for Student Success' Guided Pathways Institute and the American Association of Community Colleges Pathways Project. The initiative begins with redesigning academic programs and support services to create clearly structured program pathways to student end goals with built-in progress monitoring, feedback, and support at each step. It also ensures that program learning outcomes are clearly aligned with the requirements for success in further education and careers.
This initiative, led by Christine Conners, has numerous layers throughout LCC with positive and innovative implications to virtually all institutional operations, and aligns well with Operation 100%. The goal is to have a Guided Pathways "system" available for new students registering in fall 2016. The system will include predictable 2-year schedules for all courses to provide plannability for students.
The Academic Senate formed the Committee on Assessing Student Learning (CASL), which developed rubrics to assist faculty in inventorying existing Programs of Study, list outcomes and methods of assessing outcomes. LCC further supported this effort with the September hire of Karen Hicks to the new Director of Assessment position in the Center for Data Science.
Guided Pathways also will require creation of Survey Courses to provide undecided students with the necessary information to select their path toward completion.
Increased Online Offerings Effectiveness
The Academic Senate's Online Curriculum Committee is working with e-Learning to offer the online readiness course to faculty and provide input for greater navigation of the D2L course site to improve use and access. Such efforts will translate into a better overall experience for students with a higher probability for success.
LCC Foundation Initiatives
The LCC Foundation continued to operate toward increased philanthropic opportunities and community engagement. Efforts included a Dental Hygiene Continuing Education event that was attended by more than 50 LCC alumnae; Aviation Maintenance Open House that was open to the public with keynote speaker Tom Burt from Duncan Aviation; 2015 Distinguished Alumni and 25th Anniversary event held at MSU’s Breslin Center with 12 of the 25 past distinguished alumni on hand; financial investment to clean LCC's historical list of alumni dating back to 1957, which had not previously been maintained for change of contact information and other important statuses; more than 2,000 alumni attended annual Day at the Zoo event.
Multiple-Measure Assessment & Student Challenge System
LCC is actively working to determine how high school (HS) transcripts can be factored into the assessment process, considering not only HS GPA, but also quality of HS coursework and how these items play a role in determining college placement levels in conjunction with ACT/SAT and Accuplacer. Results will help determine whether LCC needs to develop additional challenge opportunities and/or methods for students.
LCC currently allows students to challenge through the Nelson Denny – an alternative pen and paper reading assessment – and Accuplacer for reading, writing or math.
Open Educational Resources (OER)
LCC's Academic Senate hosted an OER Summit in September that brought together prominent national speakers, experts, and advocates of open education. The first of its kind in Michigan, the summit educated attendees on the national movement, showcased best practices, and provided guidance on how to locate and adopt OER materials and practices that have lowered and even eliminated textbook costs for students while simultaneously raising learning outcomes, retention, completion, and even enrollment.
Extensive research and internal promotion yielded the creation of an OER Research Guide that has been viewed more than 3,700 times, three spring CTE Workshops, and Faculty Professional Development Day presentations.
LCC is now represented on the national OER (CCCOER) advisory committee and the Michigan Colleges Online (MC)) OER Repository Steering Committee.
LCC prides itself on being an innovator in curriculum and program design that meets the highest national academic standards. This year, the College launched a customized student success initiative—Operation 100%. The goal of the program is 100 percent completion for students in degree, certificate, and/or transfer programs. Within this initiative, students receive a personalized education plan to keep them on track toward their educational goals with built-in progress, monitoring, and support at each step along the way.
Pilot Orientation for Arts and Sciences Division
Expanded new employee orientation includes specific expectations for a culture of collaboration, consensus building, support, and integrated communication. Required for all new division employees, the orientation provides continued support of a positive/innovative LCC culture over a longer period of time, allowing for reinforcement of behavioral expectations. The pilot will be assessed and modified as needed, with the goal to set a best practices model for other areas of the college.
LCC Provost Dr. Richard Prystowsky hosted faculty, staff, and student forums in an effort to obtain feedback to improve student services, reduce operational barriers, and enhance student learning as well as communication. This initiative is ongoing.
Research Accounting Module in Banner
LCC is working to complete implementation of the Research Accounting module of Banner Finance. The module includes the maintenance and validation forms which enable individuals to create values used in cost sharing and indirect cost calculations. These forms also permit individuals to enter sponsor account codes to cross reference to institutional accounts for budget display purposes. The module also includes a Proposals component which is primarily used by researchers and research administrators as a maintenance and tracking tool. Users can enter specific information such as key personnel, agency contact and address, budgets, and indirect cost and cost sharing elements. Proposals is designed to interrelate with the Grants module so that valuable information may be brought forward to a grant if the proposal is awarded. This initiative is ongoing.
Resource Management and Fiscal Responsibility Best Practices
LCC engages in planning activities that support its ability to make data-informed and transparent decisions within a participatory framework at all levels to ensure the health and sustainability of the institution over the long term. Ongoing strategies include:
- Coordinated planning and budgeting processes to ensure institutional initiatives work together in support of student success
- Regular evaluation of courses and programs to assess student success and enrollment metrics
- Expansion and diversification of revenue-generating efforts
- Enhanced philanthropic support through increased individual and community engagement
Service Level Agreement for Financial Services
LCC is preparing a Service Level Agreement for one process in Financial Services. This initiative is ongoing.
LCC’s Speakers’ Series, created in 2014, enjoyed its fourth speaker in October with a fifth scheduled for April. A professional development opportunity for all employees, this year’s topics focus on improving employee competencies and skills related to leadership and professional development; strengthening cross-organizational dialogue and information sharing; and creating more opportunities for employees to share and learn from each other. Speakers’ Series details are available at lcc.edu/experience/speakers.
StarScapes Student Showcase
Designed to showcase LCC student work in Science, Music, Film, Art, Performance, and more, the second annual StarScapes event saw in increase in participation with more than 90 students and 33 projects on display. The English Department sponsored a new event on conjunction with StarScapes called Reading on Wednesday, where more than 60 students read from their recently published journal, Washington Square.
Star Talks Annual Series
Entering its second year, Star Talks showcases three LCC employees who have modeled/implemented ideas and practices that contribute to a positive and/or innovative LCC culture. The 10-15 minute presentations, held each May during Professional Activity Days, are videotaped and posted to LCC’s YouTube channel for internal and external consumption. Nominations are currently open for this year’s Star Talks.
Startup Weekend: Maker Edition
LCC hosted the second annual Startup Weekend: Maker Edition in October at West Campus. The inaugural event – the first of its kind in Michigan or the Midwest – was so successful is spawned a week-long Lansing Maker Week with events across the region. The LCC-hosted component brings together a diverse mix of people and skills to work on creative problem solving with access to electronics labs, CAD systems, 3D printers, metal working areas, woodworking tools, and technical assistance. Teams shared ideas, designed products, built prototypes, and launched actual businesses within 48 hours.
Three-Year Financial Forecast
LCC presented a three-year – FY16-18 – financial forecast to the Board of Trustees in April, 2015. The forecast incorporated enrollment projections based on three assumptions: unemployment rate held constant through FY18; population participation rates held constant with no significant population shifts; and an average rate of high school pipeline capture enrollment decline of 3.7% was projected for FY16, with minimal increase of 1.1% and 0.4% for FY17 and FY18, respectively. Despite the prospect of enrollment stabilization after years of declines, LCC still faces the prospect of mitigating rising costs that outpaces revenues.
Thrive Leadership Academy
Designed to elevate skills of current LCC employees in the areas of leadership, diversity, communication, teambuilding, change management, and ethics, the new Thrive Leadership Academy launched in September. The hands-on program spans seven sessions over seven months with participants tasked with creating individual and/or team goals that utilize knowledge gained in the program. The first class included 25 participants with each on pace to graduate the end of March.
LCC has engaged in an extensive redesign of lcc.edu in order to meet best practices through more intuitive design and function for a more enjoyable and clear user experience. The process has involved collaboration across all departments and divisions, current and prospective students, external stakeholders, and the community in general. Initiative goals are to standardize the look and language to create consistency throughout the institution that will create a warm and inviting environment with clear pathways for both external and internal audiences. An external facing site will service primarily as a marketing tool to proactively meet the needs and desires of prospective students. An internal facing site will serve existing students, faculty and staff with a focus on the services and resources vital to their needs. Both sites will improve integration of LCC’s social media assets in an effort to increase student engagement in regard to recruitment and retention. This initiative is ongoing.