Council suggests new marketing hire to increase SBCC enrollment

KATHYVAN TRAN, Channels Staff

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The College Planning Council is supporting increasing enrollment by increasing class sizes, reworking computer replacement, and hiring a new marketing and communications specialist to help deal with the projected $9 million deficit.

The initiatives, which were discussed at the council’s Tuesday meeting, include slowing down City College’s declining enrollment, refreshing computer equipment on campus and hiring a new full-time Marketing Communication Specialist.

Kim Monda, past-president of the academic senate.

RYAN CULLOM
Kim Monda, past-president of the Academic Senate.

“We’re really trying to preserve our institution,” said Kim Monda, past Academic Senate president. “It’s really an emergency.”

Enrollment has been declining since 2014, which causes a loss in state funding. The average class size has also decreased from 35 to 26 students in 2012, Executive Vice President Paul Jarrell said.

Immediate strategies such as offering larger class sizes, optimizing classes to meet demand and cancelling low enrolled classes sooner, are expected to be implemented this school year.

Other long term strategies to increase enrollment to be implemented this school year include evaluating class capacities campus-wide, scheduling classes to claim maximum apportionment and increasing student retention by introducing enrollment and success coaches.

The council also discussed ways to save money by changing the way computer equipment and programs are replaced, such as replacing equipment with refurbished hardware. The college is also planning on completely transitioning to Canvas by summer, which will save an estimated $60,000.

To increase enrollment, the marketing and communication work group committee recommended establishing a $50,000 budget for marketing and advertising and hiring a full-time marketing communication specialist. Director of Communications Luz Reyes-Martin said if the board approves of the new hire, she wants to start the hiring process in January.

“This is a position that is necessary for all of us,” said Academic Senate President Priscilla Butler.

Walker said some departments may be sensitive to the new hire considering many positions have been left vacant for years without any replacement. Nonetheless, the board showed positive support for the initiative.

“Totally man, I mean that’s a good investment,” Superintendent-President Anthony Beebe said. “This is overarching enough. The vision of the college is gonna be important.”

Additional recommended initiatives include:

  • Promoting college events and other newsworthy items through one office
  • Producing positive, original content for publication in local news outlets
  • Researching other awards that City College can be recognized for
  • Strengthening collaboration with the Foundation on messaging and college initiatives
  • Planning events to bring the community to the college
  • Training a team of “ambassadors”

The College Planning Council will meet again on Tuesday, Dec. 6 to approve these initiatives.

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