Message from President Roberts: Welcome to spring quarter 2020!

Dear Colleague,

Spring is always a time of hopefulness and rebirth. A time when the campus comes to life with flowers and trees in full bloom. Although we will not be on campus to experience this special time of year, the spirit of spring will be present in everything we do for our students and the diverse communities we serve.

We’ve made a monumental shift in a few short weeks with more change ahead as we settle into our final quarter of the academic year. As we enter spring quarter, we will want to hold on to our traditions like commencement and our retirement celebrations while doing it in a new and novel way given the pandemic nature of the COVID-19 virus. Shoreline’s signature strengths are our ability to innovate and lead with heart and care. I look forward to hearing the lessons learned and how we can use them going forward as a College.

Strategic Plan Goal 1: We attract students and community learners and ensure successful attainment of their goals through our programs, services, and teaching and learning environments.

Student Enrollment Update 

Several factors make assessing enrollment this quarter somewhat challenging. First, the start date of instruction was shifted, which makes it more difficult to compare this quarter to a specific day from last spring. Second, dropping students for non-payment was suspended until after the first day of instruction (April 13). The Strategic Enrollment Management team has implemented a calling campaign to reach out to students before they are dropped, but it is likely the enrollment figures we see today for Spring 2020 are considerably higher than they will be by the tenth day of the quarter.

With those caveats in mind, as of April 9 (third day of training week, two days before start of instruction), as compared to the second day of instruction last year, we are down 22 quarterly FTE (-2.8%) in international contract, down 50 quarterly FTE (-1.4%) in state-supported, and up 33 FTE (+16.2%) in Running Start. Overall, we are down 34 FTE (-0.8%). This quarter, we will be using new federal emergency funding from the CARES Act to help support students who are at risk of being dropped for non-payment, where appropriate. However, if some students are eventually dropped for non-payment, our enrollment gap will increase further.

Congratulations to Our Newest Tenured Faculty

At the College’s March 2020 Board of Trustees meeting, we were pleased to announce and support three new faculty members moving to a tenure role. The following faculty members were approved for tenure moving into fall term:

  • Rob Allred in Automotive
  • Crystal Hess in Computer Science
  • Przemyslaw (Marek) Wyzgowski in Mathematics

Given the virtual nature of the latest Board of Trustees meetings, we were not able to have an in-person celebration. We look forward to an upcoming in-person celebration of our newest Shoreline tenured faculty.

Guided Pathways

During winter quarter, the Guided Pathways Workgroup formed with seven key faculty members. The group includes co-chairs Dutch Henry and Brigid Nulty, Nancy Dick, Elena Esquibel, Phillip King, Amy Kinsel, Lisa Malik, Bayta Maring, Romina Plozza, Bob Shields, Shelby Sleight, Isaac Tchao, Kyle Winslow,  and Sunny Ybarra.

In winter quarter, the team completed and submitted the College’s Guided Pathways state-required workplan, held multiple information sessions for faculty and staff, began developing guides for Guided Pathways information and data analysis, began the student voices project, and held multiple internal learning sessions. Moving into spring quarter, the workgroup will continue outreach to the College with information sessions, continue work on student voices, and develop the framework for the 2020-21 Shoreline Guided Pathways workplan.

Instructional Division Realignment

The College began a rollout of the realignment of instructional divisions in winter quarter. The initial proposal involved a review of division assignments and workload, the review of similar colleges for workload and instructional alignment, the analysis of position titles and pay, and the analysis of cost-savings measures. Additionally, the Executive Team sought input from impacted divisions. Initial feedback was presented at the February Board of Trustees meeting.

As the College has undergone a shift in operations related to the COVID-19 emergency, the College paused on the permanent rollout of this plan. However, the College will move forward with most of the elements of the original proposal for the 2020-21 academic year in a temporary measure to ensure continuity of operations. Not all original positions proposed will be filled. All acting roles will be reviewed and most will continue with renewed contracts for the 2020-21 academic year. The College will return to this proposal in fall 2020 for final recommendations.

Accreditation Update

The comprehensive self-study for Shoreline’s Year Seven accreditation visit is still underway. Dr. Bayta Maring, our Accreditation Liaison Officer, will reach out to individuals with expertise in areas related to the NWCCU’s 114 standards. In addition, Dr. Maring will develop online training for all staff to get up to speed on accreditation. These will be release every 1 – 2 weeks, starting April 18, and will provide everyone an opportunity to both understand and contribute to the content of the comprehensive self-study. These 30-60-minute trainings will involve short video modules followed by 1-2 feedback questions, and are included in the set of approved trainings for classified staff to complete as work assignments during remote operations. Please watch for more information about these accreditation trainings next week!

Student Learning Experience Coordinating Committee (SLECC)

SLECC will reconvene in spring quarter to continue cross-collaborative work on strategic enrollment management efforts. There will be four new work groups forming as part of SLECC. Please watch for opportunities to become involved in this work in the coming weeks.

Scholarships and Emergency Funding from the Foundation

The deadline for annual scholarships for the 2020-21 academic year is April 16. Please encourage students to apply for annual scholarships if they plan to attend in the fall. Emergency grants are available anytime to students for rent, tuition, book, fees, and living expenses including medical bills, utilities and food through the Foundation and the College. Please encourage students to apply for emergency assistance if they are having any difficulty paying for any expenses right now.

Another generous donor came forward to provide one year’s rent, activity fee, admin fee, and application fee for our seventh student in the residence hall who was in need of housing support. Other donors have also answered the call and donated emergency funding for students amidst this public health crisis. We are so grateful for their support for our students.

Strategic Plan Goal 2: We continually strive for disciplined excellence and focused improvement in all that we do.

The College’s Financial Position

The State Auditor is now finished with our 2015-2016, 2016-2017, 2017-2018 Financial Statement Audits and we will have the final report to share with you and our Board of Trustees the week of April 27. Happily, they only had one finding, which was in our classification of account receivables and how we were reporting long-term versus short-term receivables.

Second, Clifton Larsen Allen (CLA), our CPA firm, has now issued our 2018-2019 Financial Statement and we are reengaging the State Auditor’s Office to review that. That audit should be complete in early June. Of course that date may be affected by the COVID-19 stay-at-home order until it is lifted.

Finally, our tuition revenue stream remains weak. Our initial Board-approved 2019-20 operating budget showed us using $1.9 million in cash to balance our expenditures and revenue. That number, because of our current decrease in enrollment, is now at $2.3 million.

Limited Innovation Fund Grant (IFG) Opportunities

The College has suspended our innovation request and award process for the upcoming 2020-21 year.  Any current innovation-funded initiative will be reviewed in spring 2020 quarter for potential consideration to finalize and complete work in the 2020-21 year. Please look forward to this process beginning again for the 2021-22 academic year with a request process in the spring of 2021.

Workflow Solutions Survey Results

I want to thank 179 of our colleagues who responded to our Workflow Solutions survey. The purpose of the survey was inquire about how we could make changes to the business operations of the College ways that support our employees. This information provides a pulse on what works best for our employees to do their work. The summary information and comments from each employee group is now available. The 179 respondents included 69 Classified staff (39%); 45 Faculty members (25%); 43 Administrative staff (24%); and 22 Other/Did not respond (12%). Overall, the results showed:

  • Although the summer work schedule of a 4.5-day work week works well, there was not an overwhelming interest to move this to a year-round schedule.
  • There was no interest in shifting working hours per week to close a specific time each week. (We will continue to do close on a specific day each week for the departments involved with ctcLink work.)
  • There was interest in individual employees alternating their work hours.
  • There was interest to closing the Friday before Labor Day as opposed to the entire last week of August.

Employee Engagement – Staying Connected While Working Remotely

The Employee Engagement office has launched a series of virtual events this spring to help keep us connected as colleagues and develop professionally. Tips and messages will be shared out each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday in Day-At-A-Glance (DAAG) that provide tools, resources, and activities we can do to engage with each other and improve the way we work. Topics will include self-care tips, technology tips, professional learning and development, employee highlights, Waves of Gratitude postings, and “Watercooler Wednesdays” (a virtual breakroom in Zoom that provides an informal space for us to meet and reconnect while we are on a break or are working on low-priority tasks). Please watch for these updates each week on DAAG and the Employee Calendar.

Residence Hall Update

We’ve implemented public health precautions and support for our on-campus community of residents to reduce the potential spread of the virus in the residence hall. We regularly disinfect the building and have closed the Great Room. We are providing frequent updates to residents regarding social distancing, how to self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19, and provided support to students who may be higher risk for infection. Our resident assistants are providing resources and passive/virtual programming to help residents stay engaged and maintain their mental and emotional health. Special thank you to Meghan Winter, our live-in Assistant Director, and her caring staff for supporting on campus living and engagement during this time.

Students were also provided the opportunity to request a release from their housing contract and we anticipate moving from 60% occupancy to 50% occupancy this spring. We are uncoupling double occupancy rooms to de-densify housing. The pandemic is covered under our insurance policy and the College will be placing claim to help mitigate the loss in lease revenue.

Capital Construction Update

We are nearing the completion of the design phase for the Health, Sciences & Advanced Manufacturing Classroom Complex. This building will replace Buildings 2400, 2500, 2600, 2700, and 2800. Because of rising construction costs and infrastructure expenses, we were unable to construct the building as originally designed. We have pivoted and made design adjustments to allow us to get the best building for the funding amount that the legislature is set to appropriate in the 2021–23 biennium.

We are currently working with the University of Washington School of Dentistry (UWSOD) on a collaboration with our Dental Hygiene program. UWSOD has written a letter of support and we are working on an addendum to our current affiliation agreement. The Dental Hygiene program is completing the appropriate reports needed for the Commission on Dental Accreditation to consider our request to accept a first-year cohort in fall 2020.

Capital Campaign Update

The Office of Advancement is making the best use of this time of social distancing to concentrate on the grant proposal phase of the Capital Campaign. This includes proposals to corporations, their foundations, and private foundations. Requests for funding include the Health, Sciences & Advanced Manufacturing Classroom Complex and for the collaboration between our Dental Hygiene program and UWSOD. While it is ill-advised to have virtual meetings with individual donors for solicitation of donations at this time, it is a perfect time to meet virtually with the Campaign Cabinet to assist them in understanding our key next steps when we are able to personally meet with donors again. The campaign has raised $732,500 to date.

Website Update

In response to COVID-19, Communications & Marketing (C&M) quickly sprang into action this winter to make significant adjustments to the website as we transitioned to remote operations and online classes. Some recent changes include launching a COVID-19 resource page, a remote operations employee resource page, a spring resource page for students, alert banners on service pages, and preparation to launch a live chat tool. The Online Learning landing page will also soon undergo some improvements to respond to the needs of our current and prospective online learners.

All the while, C&M continues to make progress on other significant planned website projects. The home page and main menus are being significantly restructured and redesigned and employees will have opportunities to provide input during spring quarter. The Apply & Aid section is being refined to make it easier for students to apply, register, and find funding, and a new student services landing page will be built to help students understand all the ways they can receive support at the College. Additionally, a new video will soon be integrated into the Visit page to provide another way to “see” the campus while we are unable to provide tours in person.

Summer 2020 Operating Hours

Between June 29 and September 4, 2020, the College’s public operating hours will be Monday through Thursday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Friday 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Supervisors are responsible for working with their staff to confirm summer schedules that meet the business needs of the College, as well as helping to inform the general public and the Shoreline community of the upcoming summer change to operating hours.

Staff members need to discuss and confirm summer work schedule with their supervisors and ensure updated summer schedules are entered into the TLR system. Questions regarding summer business hours and/or with summer staff schedules can be directed to Human Resources (206-546-4769) at any time.

ctcLink Project Update

Over 75 subject matter experts (SMEs), as part of the ctcLink project team, are working diligently to document our College’s current business processes and are beginning to explore what will be changing when we move to the new PeopleSoft system in early 2022. This will prepare us for the next phase of work in the fall when we begin setting up and testing over the course of the next academic year.

We would also like to give everyone an opportunity to begin seeing ctcLink for themselves though a number of trainings within Canvas! Feel free to self-enroll in Peoplesoft Fundamentals as an introduction. More updates will be shared in the coming weeks, including additional resources to help you become more familiar with the project. If you have any questions, please contact Joe Chiappa, ctcLink Organizational Change and Project Manager.

Strategic Plan Goal 3: We ensure that a climate of intentional inclusion permeates our decisions and practices, which demonstrate principles of ecological integrity, social equity, and economic viability.

Day of Learning Canceled

Due to our inability to host in-person gatherings in spring quarter, sadly we have made the decision to cancel our Third Annual Day of Learning, which was scheduled for Friday, April 24. This was a very difficult decision, as we have looked forward to this time to come together as a college community to learn around our values of diversity, equity, and inclusion. At this time, we are considering options to continue these conversations in small online communities throughout spring quarter. More information will come as we move into the new quarter.

Upcoming Virtual Events – Mark Your Calendar

  • Employee Engagement Events – Weekly, check Day-At-A-Glance and the Employee Calendar
  • Free Intramural Wellness Classes – Visit Intramurals web page for schedule
  • Employee Retirement Recognition – Details will be provided soon
  • Foundation Scholarship Award Ceremony – Postposed until fall, date TBD
  • Commencement – Details will be provided soon

We are weathering an incredibly disruptive public health emergency with grace and patience demonstrating the core values of our College and our deep commitment to our students learning. Our enrollment illustrates that students want to be with us even if it’s in a remote modality because the special place you’ve created called Shoreline. We don’t know what the future will bring, but what we can count on is our unwavering care for our students and each other.

With care and appreciation,

Cheryl Roberts, Ed.D.

President

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s