SIC Board Hears of Enrollment Increases, Improvements, Marathon, and Approves Budget

September 24, 2019

The Southeastern Illinois College Board of Trustees met Tuesday, Sept. 17, to discuss enrollment, improvements, SIC’s continued participation with the Shawnee Marathon and to approve the budget.

The board learned that enrollment is five percent up in headcount and four percent up in credit hours this fall, according to a recent report. Administrators link the uptick in enrollment to new programs and activities, like the increase in bowling team members, enhanced recruitment efforts in Kentucky, and more custom training, such as the additional mine training on slate.

“The efforts to increase and build enrollment are ongoing, despite a shrinking population in the Midwest and our region,” said Dr. Pat York, SIC Board Chair. “We continue to listen to our region’s needs and adapt. It’s a top priority.”

The board also heard about continued fundraising for the Learning Commons renovation project.

“It’s amazing how many local partners in our area have stepped up to make this learning center the envy of other libraries,” said Board Secretary, Jim Ellis.

A ribbon cutting and open house will be scheduled this winter once all renovation and furniture orders are complete.

Aside from the Learning Commons, renovations in Buildings A, B, and C are underway with much Public Health Service (PHS) work being done to replace flooring in all buildings as well as additional Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning work for E Building and other related PHS projects.

SIC will again be the host site for the Shawnee Half-Marathon.

“This is a wonderful event for the region and SIC is glad to play host,” said Executive Dean of Administrative Services Lisa Hite.

This year will be the seventh annual running of the event which includes a full marathon (Boston Marathon Qualifier), half-marathon and 10K. The race draws participants from all over the country. The registration deadline is Oct. 11 with the race set to occur Saturday, Oct. 26. Additional information can be found on their website:

The board approved the fiscal year 2020 Budget with a projected deficit of $400,000 which can be covered. This is due to new program and personnel costs as well as some deferred maintenance.

“We believe some of our new program investments are just and will need some time to grow. We are also in the process of mitigation strategies for FY 21 and are confident of upcoming efficiencies to remedy any shortfall,” said Dr. Jonah Rice, SIC President.

The college will offer a new Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) class this fall beginning Oct. 15, 2019. Enrollment is limited so the class is expected to fill quickly. Those interested should call (618) 252-5400, ext. 4120 to enroll.

The upcoming arbitration by the Southeastern Illinois Education Association (SICEA, faculty union) has totaled $45,000. The arbitration costs will be approximately $20,000 and split between the SICEA and the college. Administration reported that when adding indirect costs, the total arbitration from the college’s operating budget will most likely be somewhere between $70,000-$75,000.

The SICEA reported on a softball workshop by coach Calcaterra, as well as a request to move the faculty development training day in the spring since some faculty have Fridays off anyway and already have vacation plans leading up to spring break the following week. The college will consider but realizes there could be unintended consequences to a change.

A new online course review project was also presented for review and the board passed a number of revised policies on a range of subjects.

In personnel, the board approved the transfer of Amy Murphy, Director of Nursing and Allied Health to Administrative Director of Nursing and Allied Health.  The board also accepted the retirement and resignation of several employees and approved the hiring of a part-time food service assistant, Brandy Tucker, and adjunct faculty.

The next meeting of the board will be Thursday, Oct. 24, at 6 p.m. in the Rodney J. Brenner Board Room at SIC. More information about SIC can be found at