The Skyline College Strategic Planning and Allocation of Resources Committee (SPARC) met on Thursday, November 10, 2016.

Aaron McVean, Interim Vice President of Instruction, along with Cheri Jones, Interim Dean of Planning, Research and Institutional Effectiveness and Luis Escobar, Dean of Counseling provided an update on the Skyline College Promise initiative.  The Skyline College Promise is that students will “Get in. Get through. Get out…on time!” VP McVean reviewed the organizational structure, noting that the Skyline College Promise Task Force is comprised of several cross functional teams – Meta Majors & Guided Pathways, Promise Scholarship Programs, and High School Partnership Programs, including the Summer Scholars Institute (SSI).

Dean Escobar talked about this year’s Summer Scholar Institute, a five-week intensive program for incoming freshmen held last June and July.  He presented demographics as well as academic data of students who participated and financial data for the program.  The college is looking at ways to scale up the program next year, which may include having 1-week and 3-week sessions in addition to the 5-week session.

Dean Cheri Jones shared more information on the Skyline College Promise Scholarship program which was launched this Fall. 70% of the recipients plan to transfer to a four-year college upon completion at Skyline College.

Also launched at the start of the Fall semester is the Skyline College Express Shuttle which provides direct service between Daly City BART and the campus.  The free Shuttle service has been highly successful, with ridership averaging about 1900 one way rides per week.  An October survey showed that over 92% of the ridership consists of students and most passengers ride the shuttle 4-5 times per week.

Eloisa Briones, Vice President of Administrative Services presented a narrative of the final Fiscal Year 2016-2017 budget.  Skyline College’s Unrestricted General Fund 1 expenditure budget totals $39,325,980.  The College received $600,000 in District Innovation Funds to support the Bachelor’s Degree in Respiratory Care program, the institutionalization of Workforce Programs and the Career Advancement Academies.  These funds are in addition to last year’s ongoing innovation funds of $800,000 to support the Middle College and the institutionalization of the SparkPoint Center. SPARC’s recommendation for a balanced budget for the current year included funding for new positions – 5 faculty, 2.5 classified and 1.5 administrators.

Dean Jones gave a progress report on the Institutional Effectiveness and Program Improvement grant of $150,000 that Skyline College received from the State Chancellor’s Office.  The funds have been designated to implement technology solutions from Ad Astra and Strategic Planning Online (SPOL) software. These tools will be useful for enrollment management and further integration of planning and budget process.  Dean Jones also solicited input from the group on what features they would like to see included in SPOL. A demo may be available for the committee to test at the next meeting.

The next SPARC meeting is scheduled for December 8, 2016 from 2:10 to 4:00 pm in Room 6-203.

Article by Judy Hutchinson