Meeting of the Winthrop University Board of Trustees
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Meeting of the Winthrop University Board of Trustees

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Monday, March 30, 2020

Teleconference originating in DiGiorgio Campus Center

Winthrop University, Rock Hill, SC 

 

Members present: Glenn McCall, Gary Williams, Kathy Bigham, Ashlye Wilkerson , Robby Sisco, Isaiah Venning, Jane LaRoche, Tim Hopkins, Randy Imler, Ed Driggers, Donna Glenn Holley, Julie Fowler, Tim Sease, Janet Smalley, George Hynd (ex-officio)

Members absent: Sandra Stroman

Representatives present: Adolphus Belk, Jr.,  Imani Belton

Others present: Adrienne McCormick, Justin Oates, Kimberly Faust, Amanda Maghsoud, Jack DeRochi

                                               

The Board of Trustees met on Friday, March 30, 2020 via teleconference on the campus of Winthrop University, Rock Hill, SC. 

 

Call to Order

Chair McCall called the meeting to order at 12:30 p.m. in the DiGiorgio Campus Center.  He welcomed all present.  Chair McCall delivered an invocation.  He then thanked Dr. Hynd and the senior leadership for working long hours on Winthrop’s behalf. 

 

Recap of University Actions related to COVID-19

President Hynd provided an update on activities and actions related to COVID-19. 

Now that most of the students have removed their belongings from the residence halls, we can focus on

moving the remaining students who have been approved to stay, into suite style halls for the remainder of the academic year. 

 

The South Carolina Commission on Higher Education is to continues to work with the University Presidents and is close to an announcement on guidelines for adjustments to housing and meal plan fees. We expect to refund residence hall fees, unused meal plan fees, and possibly parking fees.  All schools are submitting our estimates of the financial implications of COVID-19 to the CHE.  

 

The Information Technology office is working to supply faculty, staff, and students with the appropriate technology to support on‐line learning and working from home.

 

Gary Williams moved with a second from Jane LaRoche to move into executive session pursuant to South Carolina Ann. §30-4-70(a)(1)  for the purpose a discussion of proposed contractual arrangements.  The vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.  Adolphus Belk, Jr, Imani Belton, Kimberly Faust, Adrienne, McCormick, Amanda Maghsoud, Jack DeRochi, and Justin Oates were invited to remain for the executive session.

 

Tim Hopkins moved with a second from Robbie Sisco to end the executive session with no report.  The vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

 

Consideration of Summer Session 2020 Tuition and Fee Schedule

Given the disruption to course delivery due the COVID‐19 crisis, our approach for Summer 2020 is to offer most courses online and at a price that is very competitive. Our approach aims to ensure that current students who desire to take courses during the summer will choose Winthrop over other options. 

 

The goal is to have at least 80% of summer 2020 course offered online.  Currently 129 summer courses (40% of the total summer session offerings) are planned to be offered in-seat or hybrid.  To achieve the 80% goal, the Provost is working with faculty to identify classes that can be converted on only line delivery, replaced by an alternative online course, or moved to a later summer session or offered in the fall semester.

 

We are asking to implement a tuition rate of $450 for summer 2020.  Currently, the Winthrop summer 2020 tuition rate is discounted 20% from fall/spring tuition rates.  The proposed $450 would be a 30% total discount on fall/spring rates.

 

While we work to identify those campus-based courses to move online this summer, the Office of Online Learning is working to develop a streamlined instructional course for faculty members inexperienced in online teaching.  Developing a streamlined course will both prepare more faculty to serve students this summer and increase Winthrop’s overall capacity to deliver online courses and programs moving forward.

 

We expect Winthrop’s enrollment in online graduate programs to remain flat from spring to summer terms. Currently, we have 316 online graduate students.  Our partners at Wiley project 50-60 new online students starting this summer as well as a 85% retention rate on our current cohort. 

 

The Committee on Finance met earlier this morning to consider the financial implications of reducing summer session tuition to $450 for instate students.  After discussing this option with the Provost, the Dean of the Graduate School, and the Vice President for Finance and Business Affairs, the Finance Committee is in favor of the reduced tuition for summer 2020.

 

Randy Imler made a motion to accept the recommendation of discounting summer tuition an additional 12% for summer 2020.  Kathy Bigham seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

 

Adjournment

Gary Williams moved to adjourn the meeting.  Tim Sease seconded the motion.  The vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

Chair McCall adjourned the meeting at 2:46 p.m.

 

Minutes submitted by Kimberly A. Faust, Secretary to the Board

Last Updated: 9/1/20