The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 7, 2012

NOC needs people to help plan college's future

By Phyllis Zorn, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — Northern Oklahoma College is dreaming and planning for its next five years, and school officials are looking for people to help the process.

Town hall meetings are scheduled for Enid, Tonkawa and Stillwater for people to share their ideas for the college’s future. These meetings will bring together faculty, staff, students and area residents to develop a strategic plan for the next five years.

The Enid meeting will be 2-5 p.m. Wednesday in Room 100 of the Gantz Student Center.

Those planning to attend the meeting are asked to RSVP by calling (580) 628-6210.

Cheryl Evans, president of NOC, said it’s been about four years since the college last did strategic planning.

Recruitment, retention and completion are the overall goals for this round of planning.

“We want to do a better job of not just recruiting, but helping (students) stay in college and complete it with a degree or a certificate that will put them right to work in Oklahoma,” Evans said. “We hope our stakeholders and community members will participate. We want to listen to their voices. We think it’s important.”

The meetings will be interactional.

“We will have an overview of what our goals are with the strategic plan, and then we’ll break into small groups,” Evans said.

Evans said developing the strategic plan will be a yearlong process. The final plan will be released in May.

Sal Rinella and Jolene Koester, from Penson Associates, a California-based research and consultation firm focusing on higher education and nonprofit organizations, will be on hand to assist in the meetings and planning.

Rinella is chief executive officer and senior associate of Penson Associates. He formerly served as president of Austin Peay State University and is coordinator of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Experienced Presidents Retreat. For 10 years, he has served as a consultant to all areas of higher education.

Koester, former president of California State University-Northridge, is  nationally known for her leadership in higher education. Currently, she serves on the faculty of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities New Presidents Academy. Strategic planning is among her areas of specialization.

The meeting at NOC’s Tonkawa campus will be 2-5 p.m. today in the Renfro Center.

In Stillwater, participants will meet 11:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. Thursday in Sequoyah Room 280 of the Oklahoma State University Student Union.