Board Report: October 2017

   Campus News | Posted on December 13, 2017

On Monday, Oct. 23, President Andrea Luxton and Provost Christon Arthur hosted a board briefing to summarize, for the campus community, information and actions from the Andrews University Board of Trustees meetings held October 20–23, 2017, on the University campus.

Luxton noted, “I think it’s encouraging to know that we have a board that is very engaged, is very supportive of Andrews University and really wrestles with us with issues to move the University forward. It’s by no means a ‘them and us’ situation. It really is all of us together.”

The following are highlights from the board’s full session.

Consent items—including faculty/staff/administrative appointments,* the annual diversity report, and an Upton Foundation grant submission request for the Wellness Center—were voted through by the board.

Arthur reported on key performance indicators: student exit reports and statistics on enrollment and retention. All indicators were very strong except for those relating to some areas of enrollment, most of which are now beginning to turn positively.

Duane McBride, professor of sociology, who chairs a group tasked with creating a University framework for free speech and civility, summarized the campus conversation on the topic.

The Audit Committee had a clean audit. The auditors shared only positive comments related to how the University finances are run. There was also an appointment/reappointment of an auditor.

The operations and finance report detailed the September 30, 2017, financial statement. Currently, the University is in line with both income and expenses. This year should result in a positive outcome, ending with a $2–$3 million improvement from last year. Next year the budget will make an additional $2 million adjustment in order to align the University’s budget with its voted financial goals.

For 2019 there are indicators of new revenue, though the University is budgeting the same student numbers as the current year. Tuition and fees will increase by 3 percent, but there will be no increase in room and board. Church subsidies from the NAD and Lake Union will increase slightly. The goal is to keep discounts at the same dollar amount as this year. Compensation will increase by 2 percent, and benefits will increase by $300,000. Academic expenses will decrease by $1 million. This will leave a net of $3.5 million, which meets budget goals.

The Board approved a budget of $17.5 million for the Wellness Center. Currently, $17 million has been raised, and the University will extend its line of credit to fill the gap between pledges coming in and the construction of the Wellness Center.

A number of local churches have talked to Andrews about the potential to purchase or lease land on the edges of University property. The board approved an agreement with the Berrien Springs Spanish Church, which will purchase up to five acres of land near the apartments.

The governance report approved committee terms of reference and appointed one new board member, Joshue Pierre, associate general counsel for the General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists.

The Student Experience & Faith Development Committee looked at Student Life policies and frameworks. Andrews University seeks to provide care and nurture to all students. With this in mind, a framework document that responds to the care of LGBT students on campus, and how the University can continue the pathway of support within the context of the guidelines of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, was developed (see for the complete statement).

As Don Livesay has retired, Maurice Valentine, Lake Union Conference president, was elected as the new vice chair of the board.

At the briefing, Arthur also summarized the Program Improvement & Prioritization process carried out by a committee comprised of academic deans and faculty senators. The process had input from the academic Deans Council, departmental chairs, Faculty Senate, Cabinet, University Strategy & Planning Committee and the general faculty. He said, “We engaged in two different conversations over the last year and a half or two years. One aspect dealt with program review—how we organize our institution, looking at the programs we offer. The second dealt with conversations that we had beginning in the last few months about how to imagine the future of Andrews. One part of the conversation deals with making sure that we are efficient in what we do. The other part of the conversation says, ‘Well, what’s next? How do we make sure we remain on the cutting edge and are attuned to the landscape of higher education?’”

Out of this review, several initiatives were formulated to strengthen academics and grow enrollment. They included a redesign of the general education (Andrews Core Experience—ACE) curriculum, an improved first-year experience, an irresistible culture of service, a strategic marketing campaign and a strategic recruiting campaign.

For the 2018–2019 academic year, a goal has been set to increase the new undergraduate student population through targeted marketing. There will also be some restructuring of schools, programs and degrees to minimize duplication of efforts. Exact details of what that will mean will be worked out over the next few months.

Arthur said, “Part of what we are doing for this program review is to create space and infrastructure for growth. We have to be efficient but also think of the changes in the higher education landscape and how to respond to them as we envision the future of Andrews.”

*Faculty/Staff/Administrative Appointments

New Hires: Staff

  • Andrew Dormus, associate dean, Meier Hall
  • Jeffrey Easton, systems administrator, Information Technology Services
  • Jasmine Griggs, contact center specialist, Information Technology Services
  • Edith Guifarro, graduate admissions coordinator, Office of Graduate Enrollment
  • Cassandra Heslop, transfer enrollment coordinator, Enrollment Services
  • Gina Lascon, University archivist, Center for Adventist Research
  • Marissa Louis-Jeune, executive assistant to provost, Office of the Provost
  • Ana Lizardo, operations coordinator/advisor, Department of Physical Therapy
  • Karen Moliere, graduate advisor/admissions coordinator, Department of Physical Therapy
  • Michael Nixon, vice president for Diversity & Inclusion, Office of the President
  • Alyssa Palmer, assistant registrar for publications and communications, Office of Academic Records
  • Moses Primo Jr., communication systems coordinator, Undergraduate Enrollment
  • Kari Prouty, assistant director, Undergraduate Leadership
  • Melina Sample, staff psychologist, Counseling & Testing Center
  • Paul Schmoling, flight instructor, Department of Aviation
  • Jordan Smart, LUC/NAD enrollment counselor, Enrollment Management
  • Eloy Wade, Banner support specialist, Information Technology Services
  • Tony Yang, enrollment & strategic marketing director, Integrated Marketing & Communication

Position Changes: Staff

  • Carmelita Arthur, admissions coordinator, School of Health Professions
  • Elynda Bedney, assistant vice president, Student Financial Services
  • Jessica Larson, aquatics director, Swimming Pool Operations
  • Esther Lonto, senior accountant, Financial Records
  • Renato Mejia, assistant director/marketing & recruiting, Graduate Enrollment
  • Karen Moliere, graduate advisor/admissions coordinator, Physical Therapy
  • Dawn Mutz, associate registrar, Academic Records
  • Justin Neu, marketing & recruitment coordinator, School of Business Dean’s Office
  • Jillian Panigot, director, Graduate Enrollment
  • Gillian Sanner, media communications manager, Integrated Marketing & Communication
  • Lawrence Schalk, senior vice president for Financial Administration, Financial Administration

New Hires: Faculty

  • Heather Day, assistant professor, Visual Art, Communication & Design
  • Bryce Fisher, assistant professor, maintenance, Aviation
  • Elsy Gallardo-Diaz, music instructor, Andrews Academy
  • Charity Garcia, assistant professor, Department of Teaching, Learning and Curriculum
  • Max Keller, assistant professor, Department of Music
  • Collene Kelly, instructor, Ruth Murdoch Elementary School
  • Carol Rossman, professor, Department of Nursing
  • Alan Scott, assistant professor, Aviation
  • Scott Ward, assistant professor, Discipleship & Religious Education
  • Everett Wiles, assistant professor, Visual Art, Communication & Design

Position Changes: Faculty

  • Carlos Flores, faculty emeritus, Department of Music
  • Paul Gregor, reappointment to four-year chair, Old Testament
  • Luana Gruelich, chair/assistant professor, Teaching, Learning & Curriculum
  • Darius Jankiewicz, reappointment to four-year chair, Theology and Christian Philosophy
  • Lester Merklin, professor emeritus, World Mission
  • Desrene Vernon-Brebnor, assistant professor/graduate program director, Visual Art, Communication & Design
  • Rob Zdor, chair, Department of Biology