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Trustees hear Library Services, MAC Foundation reports

The Mineral Area College Board of Trustees unanimously approve an unchanged tax rate for fiscal year 2024 — 46.08 cents per $100 of assessed valuation of $1,189,451,235. (Photo by Kevin R. Jenkins)

Fiscal year 2024 tax rate unchanged


The annual Library Services report was among several reports the Mineral Area College Board of Trustees heard when the board met in regular session Sept. 14 in the VanHerck Board Room on the school’s Park Hills campus.

Library Director Ryan Harrington reported a significant increase in the use of the library’s physical items, materials and databases compared to the previous year.

“A lot of good things are coming from the library,” Harrington said. “As far as last year, compared to the previous year, the circulation numbers for physical materials that were checked out increased. As you all know, we’re a part of the MOBIUS Consortium, which every college in the state of Missouri — even public libraries — belong to. That allows us to borrow and lend material between libraries. We had a 12% increase of books that were shared and borrowed from the previous year.”

Harrington said faculty, students, and adjuncts checked out 19% more materials last year than the year before. He said student usage of research databases like the California Environmental Reporting System also increased 15%, and the library’s newest online database, Academic Video Online, saw 43% more usage.

Library Director Ryan Harrington gives his annual Library Services report to the Mineral Area College Board of Trustees at its Sept. 14 meeting in the VanHerck Board Room. (Photo by Kevin R. Jenkins)

“So, it’s really cool to see — not only students but faculty — integrating those videos and embedding those into their classes as well,” Harrington said.

Harrington noted MAC students continue using laptops available for checkout through the library each semester.
“We’ve now been offering that [service] for almost two full years now, and every semester that we’ve had those, they are completely checked out by students,” he said. “In fact, we had three left, and the last three of them were checked out yesterday. So, those continue to be a very beneficial resource to our students that we offer.”

Touting the results of a survey filled out by students for the fall of 2022 and spring 2023 semesters, Harrington said, “This is something I’m not one to toot my own horn, but every semester, we do a graduate survey for students,” he said. “And once again — based on the survey that was sent out for the fall of 2022 and spring of 2023 semester — the library services had the highest satisfaction rating among students. So, that’s something I’m particularly proud of.”

Harrington reported MAC English Instructor Emily Murdoch began bringing a licensed therapy dog named “Luna” to the library last year — including finals week — to act as a de-stressor for students.
“So, if you heard anybody say something about the library ‘going to the dogs,’ that’s what they were referring to.”

Harrington included an update on the library successfully taking over printing services for the college two years ago, news that a Hispanic Heritage Month display was to go up in the library the following day, the Excel program has begun its second year of offering weekly workshops for students, and work has begun on the library’s annual inventory.

“My part-time staff loves it when I ask them, ‘Who’s ready to work on inventory this year?'”
In his MAC Foundation report, Kevin Thurman, executive director of development, informed the trustees that the foundation had installed six new members — Bill Cotton, Kent Marler, Ben Minkel, Colin Rogers, Shawna Pettis and David Scism.

“I’m sure some of these are familiar names to you all,” he said.

Thurman announced that this year’s MAC Athletics Golf Tournament is being held Sept. 20.
“That’s next Friday,” he said. “We are full in the afternoon, and we have 23 teams in the morning, so that’s looking great. We’ve got some great prizes. Now, we’re just hoping for a good weather day. It should be good. The morning session is at seven and the afternoon at one or 1:30.”

Thurman concluded his report by announcing a scholarship luncheon at 11:30 a.m. on Oct. 25 at the Industry and Technology Center.

“So, it’s kind of new,” he said. “We used to do a community-related luncheon for many years. We’re kind of switching that over. We’re going to include the men now, so we’re going to have a scholarship luncheon.”

Asked if the luncheon will be made up of scholarship recipients from prior years, Thurman said, “What we’re going to do is invite community members, donors and businesspeople in the area. And then we’re going to have some students that received scholarships who are going to get up and talk a little bit about how the scholarships have transformed their lives and helped them make it.”

Additional reports were heard from the Faculty Forum and Classified Staff.

In old business, MAC Business Manager Rick Jenkins presented the fiscal year 2024 projected tax rate revenues for the approval of the school’s board of trustees.

“Final certified figures were received from all six counties,” he said. “Based upon the admitted assessed valuations, the college’s taxing rate will remain at 46.08 cents per $100 of assessed valuation of $1,189,451,235. The rates have been certified by the state law.”

The trustees unanimously approved an unchanged tax rate for fiscal year 2024.

In new business, the trustees unanimously approved motions concerning debt service defeasance and overload and adjunct recommendation lists.

Four new employees were introduced at the meeting: Lacey Dwyer, SIM Lab coordinator; Dr. Sherry Francis, vocal music instructor; Makayla Wilson, Early Learning Academy lead teacher; and CJ Wright, head coach and women’s softball/College Park coordinator.

The next meeting of the MAC Board of Trustees will be held at 11 a.m. Oct. 5 in the VanHerck Board Room.

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