Faculty and Staff - March 18, 2024

At the Winthrop University Board of Trustees retreat last week (rescheduled from February), the cabinet and I enjoyed spending time with members sharing updates from some of the major divisions of the university. Anchoring discussion was a Winthrop: United in Excellence strategic plan update on goals, objectives and tactics, and each area talked about “big dial KPIs” that would define progress in years one through three of the plan.

The cabinet members who presented on Day 1 were Joe Miller, enrollment management and marketing; Justin Oates, finance and business affairs; Shelia Burkhalter, student affairs; Sebastian van Delden, academic affairs; Kevin Hughes, advancement; and Chuck Rey, athletics. After presentations, the board and I discussed their feedback and recommendations. On Day 2 the board undertook its self-evaluation, my performance and contract, and received an update from General Counsel Todd Hagins. They closed the day with discussion of effective trusteeship, including roles and responsibilities.

The board took action on the following:

Tuition Transparency – The board expressed its support for the initiative that Joe Miller is leading and its confidence in the administration to successfully implement this critical step towards enhanced affordability, transparency, and alignment with Winthrop’s mission, vision and values.

Student Housing – Trustees approved terms of agreement with Walk 2 Campus for additional student housing for the 2024-25 academic year at its apartment-style facility adjacent to the Winthrop campus.

Facilities – Members approved facilities and infrastructure projects as presented, including:

  • Bancroft fire alarm replacement by Miller Electric for $270,410 (state funded)
  • Stewart House exterior renovation by CE Bourne for $678,900 (gift funded)
  • Lee Wicker roof replacement by Davco Roofing & Sheetmetal for $1,163,765 (institution funded) and the approval to utilize project savings for the Phelps roof replacement in summer 2025
  • Joynes roof replacement and brick repair by Midwest Maintenance for $1,587,732 (state funded)
  • Increase of Gilbane’s guaranteed maximum price for the Byrnes project scope by $580,000 to a total of $9.18M (state funded)

Degree Programs – The board established the Bachelor of Science in web development, phasing out the B.S. in digital information design as current students complete their programs; established the Bachelor of Arts in criminal justice with general and cyber and corporate crime concentrations; approved the transition of the Bachelor in Science in integrated marketing communication to a Bachelor of Arts in the same.

Fees – Trustees authorized a slate of fee adjustments for Fall 2024 as proposed by the Provost.

Other – The board adopted the ratification of a vendor services contract with Canon Strategic LLC to provide external public and private business partnership development activities and intergovernmental relationship consulting services, and trustees also approved an upcoming honorary degree presentation, as recommended by me and the Honorary Degree Review Committee.

To learn more, the board resolutions are available online.

As always, thank you for your interest in the activities of the Winthrop University Board of Trustees.