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* Shoreline getting a stairway to FOSS

FOSS stairs.jpg

Above:The artist's view of the new FOSS stairs, landings and canopy.
Below: The current FOSS ramp and landings   More photos

Shoreline Community College campus is acclaimed as the most beautiful in the state system with wonderful landscaping, walkways and architecture.

For better or worse, along with those iconic campus images is the ramp to FOSS’ third floor. Starting June 18, 2012, that’s going to change; the ramp is coming down.

FOSS stairs 2.jpg“The ramp was built in 1972 and it just doesn’t meet current (American Disabilities Act) slope or seismic standards,” said Director of Facilities/Capital Projects Bob Roehl. A recent facilities assessment also noted the ramp has less than 10 years of useful life remaining, he added.

The ramp, along with both the second- and third-floor landings, will be torn down this summer. In their place will be new stairs, new landings a new canopy above the third-level landing, but no ramp. The major impact is main entrances to the second and third levels won't be possible during construction. Temporary signage will be posted across campus and in key locations.

The project is scheduled to be finished by Sept. 7, well-before the start of fall quarter. However, that means a summer’s worth of temporary access to FOSS and the likelihood of temporarily relocated services. Roehl said access will be via the relatively new outside staircase on the north side of the building along with original the eastside stairs.

That will be fine for most, but doesn’t address access for the disabled. Roehl said the newly upgraded elevator will be in the center of the construction zone, not to mention that until the new landings are built, it wouldn’t connect to anything.

One likely solution could be that some student services could be relocated to the PUB, much the way they were during recent FOSS renovations.  If not a complete move, than at least a student services area to interact with students and then a connection back to FOSS. Roehl said meetings are ongoing on how best to serve students during the demolition and construction period.

Once the project is finished, disabled access to the second and third floors will be by elevator.

The ramp isn’t the only things that will be missing, Roehl said. “This should also take care of those water leaks on the landings that drip down from above,” he said.

SCC/Jim Hills

* Shoreline deciphering state budget implications

While legislators cast their votes to approve a state budget more than a week ago, all that means to state agencies such as Shoreline Community College is that the work of understanding and implementing the implications of that budget can finally get started.

BUDGET DETAILS

Despite the vagaries of budget-related details, there are a few specifics that can be said based on legislative action, including:

  • Based on the currently anticipated state budget allocation, the Shoreline Community College administration has determined that purchase of faculty tenure (buyouts) will not be offered for the current 2011-12 fiscal year, which ends June 30, 2012.

  • No layoffs in the current fiscal year that ends June 30, 2012. “We were on the hot seat all year,” President Lambert said. “It’s nice to finally know we don’t have to take any further cuts right now.”

“While the general news from Olympia was better than expected and we are very grateful, it takes work by the State Board staff and then Shoreline staff to define and understand the details,” President Lambert said. “We’re fortunate to have (Vice President for Administrative Services) Daryl Campbell and (Budget Director) Holly Woodmansee to make sense of the numbers for us.”

At this point, State Board staff members have shared a draft of the proposed state allocation to all community and technical colleges. That draft gets reviewed before the State Board is scheduled to make a final decision at the May 9-10 meeting at Big Bend Community College in Moses Lake.

Like the difference between seeing a smiling face on the moon while viewing from the backyard and finding a dusty, barren surface when jumping off a lunar-lander ladder, the view of the budget changes depending on proximity to it. What’s more, both experiences can be true.

“The statement that there were no cuts to higher education, including the community and technical colleges, can be true when viewed holistically,” Campbell said. “However, a closer look at how discretionary and non-discretionary funds are administered shows we are getting less in the state allocation.”

For Shoreline, that could mean about $1.25 million less in state-allocated funds for the 2012-13 fiscal year that starts July 1, 2012, according to draft numbers.

“However, the Legislature also approved raising tuition for the coming year,” Campbell said. Because the number of students and which courses they take impact tuition revenue, it is impossible to say for sure what that could mean for Shoreline. Additional tuition revenue is hoped to cover at least some of the reduction in state allocation along with other non-state funds such as Running Start payments, grants and contracts and bookstore revenue, he added.

Lambert has cautioned that the current budgetary reprieve shouldn’t be seen as an end to fiscal concerns. “This is just a lull,” Lambert said. “We must take advantage of this time to prepare for the new realities that are surely coming. If we do, we can be in charge of our destiny, not just reacting to cut after cut as we have since 2008.”

SCC/Jim Hills

* Shoreline President Lee Lambert testifies in D.C.

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SCC President Lee Lambert testfying Tuesday, April 17, 2012 before a Senate subcommittee.

 

LINKS

Shoreline Community College President Lee Lambert today told a U.S. Senate subcommittee how the college is putting into practice the national programs designed to get Americans back to work.

 

Lambert is spoke before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Competitiveness, Innovation, and Export Promotion at a hearing titled “Promoting American Competitiveness:  Filling Jobs Today and Training Workers for Tomorrow.” Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., is a member of the subcommittee that is chaired by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.

 

“Community colleges are in a unique position to connect the needs of business and industry with the men and women who come to us for employable skills,” Lambert said in his testimony.

“Shoreline Community College has been at the forefront of implementing the Manufacturing Skills Certification System endorsed by the National Association of Manufacturers. Today, we’re leading the way to implement the Right Skills Now program recently touted by President Obama. Our campus is also one of two national innovation centers connected to National Coalition of Certification Centers. “

Partnerships, Lambert told the senators, are the key to Shoreline’s success.

“We ask each of our partners what we can do for them, not what they can do for us,” he said.

Following his testimony, Chairwoman Klobuchar asked Lambert about how Shoreline is making connections with military veterans.

“Shoreline is a Center for Excellence for veterans and received a U.S. Department of Education grant to help us better serve veterans,” Lambert responded. “It’s so important to create the wraparound services that veterans need to be successful.”

In his testimony, Lambert cited the Professional Automotive Training Center and Manufacturing program as examples of how aligning the curriculum with industry needs can help students.

These students are getting jobs, good jobs, with a placement rate of virtually 100 percent,” Lambert said. “We’ve found a model that works, putting people in jobs that industry needs filled. Now were working to apply in other areas just as fast as we can.”

Through Lambert’s leadership, Shoreline is playing a role at the national level in raising awareness of the need for stronger collaboration between education and industry. Some of the key tenets of the relationship are industry-based curriculum, third-party certifications and assessments and strong student support programs.

 

Over the past several years, Shoreline has been working closing with the National Association of Manufacturers and the Manufacturing Institute to develop the Manufacturing Skills Certification System. As an example of how that system works, Shoreline’s CNC Machinist program is certified by the National Institute for Metalworking Skills.

 

Shoreline’s lead machining instructor, Keith Smith, recently developed a two-quarter certificate specifically for the needs of the aerospace industry, including Boeing the some of the more than 600 industry suppliers in the state. That certificate is now being adopted by 10 other colleges in the state and has become part of the Right Skills Now program touted by President Obama

 

Shoreline is also one of the founding members of the National Coalition of Certification Centers (NC3) and Lambert is the incoming board president for the organization.

 

“U.S. industry still leads the world,” Lambert said. “We can help make sure we stay No. 1 by educating and training students for the jobs and leadership positions needed now and in the future.”

 

SCC/Jim Hills