Board talks tuition, funding, retirement

Mia Mazzorana, Staff Writer

A tuition payment increase decision was delayed by the IVCC board Thursday evening. The Board of Trustees approved discussion of payment increases until the following meeting in March.

President Dr. Jerry Corcoran explained that the tuition increase plan was delayed to preserve the college’s enrollment resurgence and not jeopardize the rising trajectory for the up coming fiscal year. The board agreed to hold off on this matter to explore alternative options going forward.

Corcoran ensured commitment to this issue and noted, “It’s important to be mindful that the federal and state grants we have been receiving for two years to help everyone deal with the effects of the pandemic will eventually go away so we should include in our three-year plan what measures will be taken without further financial support and not jeopardize our reputation for quality in programs and services at an affordable price.”

In addition to the ongoing tuition increase deliberations, the board discussed the funding increase of an additional $39,007 for student mental health wellbeing. Moreover the board announced, pending future appropriations, IVCC will receive $93,000 a year for three years for continued mental health support.

In other action, tenure recommendations were approved in the meeting for three instructors. Nancy McDonnell in cybersecurity, Ricky Pretzsch in economics, and Kaity Ritter in Medical Assisting were among those approved.

McDonnell founded the cybersecurity program three years ago and has taken on many computer networking courses.

“Nancy is great at connecting with students,” said Shane Lange, Dean of Workforce Development.

Ricky Pretzsch instructs economics and advises the student economics club. Dean of Natural Sciences and Business Ron Groleau praised Pretzsch’s ability to engage students by relating classroom topics to real-world applications.

Ritter established the Medical Assistant program three years ago and aspirers to one day expand it to offer an associate degree.

Retirement dates were approved by the board for 15 individuals, each retiring within the span of the next three years. They are faculty Margie Francisco, Christine Blaydes, Richard Mangold, and David Kuester, as well as administrators and support staff Fran Brolley, Walter Waligora, Judy Day, Matthew Suerth, Cynthia Cardosi, Karen Gregorich, Lynn Moore, Marla Forbes, Marlene Merkel, Mark Quincer, and Steve Gillio.

Judy Day, Executive Assistant to the President and Secretary to the Board, noted in her letter to IVCC President Jerry Corcoran concerning her retirement, “Upon retirement I will have been at IVCC for 38 years and worked in Student Services, Academic Affairs and the President’s Office. It has been a privilege to serve the students, staff, faculty, administration and board and an honor to serve the district with you.”

Noting Day’s and Brolley’s retirements, Corcoran closed his report saying, “Together, they have given 73 years to IVCC and are so much alike: gifted, dependable, professional, respectful and respected. We all go our separate ways in a few short months, but I’ll never forget all they have done to make IVCC a wonderful place in which to work and change peoples’ lives.”

The IVCC Board of Trustees will meet once more on Thursday, March 9, 2023.