Pres. Meehan's Report to Board of Trustees Oct. 16
Ayers Hall Transportation Building
Work is progressing on this project with completion anticipated
late November. Electrical and plumbing work is taking place
now as well as HVAC duct work and painting of walls. HVAC equipment
is scheduled for November delivery and hookup. Hale Building
Company is the contractor.
McClellan 3181 New Parking Lot
The parking lot is being built with federal funds received
by Gadsden State Community College on JSU property. The contractor,
McCartney Construction Company received notice to proceed on
September 18th. The parking lot will contain approximately 70
spaces and will include lighting and landscaping for the site.
Construction began at the site October 9th.
Demolition of Steam Plant, Abercrombie and Luttrell Halls
Taylor Corporation completed this project but requested a change
order which was denied by the University. Taylor Corporation
may petition the State Building Commission but has not sought
this avenue of relief as of this date.
Little River Canyon Field School
Total funding from NASA is $6.3 million. Bids were opened October
12, 2006 from two contractors. The apparent low bidder is Virgil
Barry Construction with a base bid of $8,860,000. No award is
recommended as the base bid exceeds the construction budget.
Chimney Peak Observatory
Hale Building Company has formed the walls and floor slab for
concrete pouring which began last week. This project will greatly
enhance the University's astronomical observation and allow
these scientific tools to be shared with public school. Completion
is anticipated during Spring Semester 2007.
Art Department Annex Building
CCS Duncan of Madison, Alabama poured the concrete floor slab
on October 6th. This building as approved by the Trustees is
within the University Master Plan and will provide a safe environment
for the Department of Art's ceramic studio as well as complete
the reaccreditation requirements for this academic program.
Bids were received from three contractors and opened on October
10th. The apparent low bidder is Daktronics, Inc., with a base
bid of $820,810. Alternates included in the bid package were
for electronic message boards at Pete Mathews Coliseum, Montgomery
Building and a second scoreboard at Paul Snow Stadium. Funding
from advertising sales and private gifts will sponsor these
Our Fall Semester enrollment as of the last day to register
(Sept.6) was a head count of 8,957 the University's third highest
enrollment. The highest enrollment was Fall 2005 and the second
highest, Fall 2003. The number of first time freshman enrolled
for fall is the second highest since admission requirements
were increased in the early 1990's. First time student enrollment
(first time freshman and transfer students) is16 students less
than last year and is the second highest in the last 16years.
The greatest decrease in enrollment was at the graduate level
with 179 students less than last fall.
In ACHE's comparison of Alabama's 13 four year universities;
five had enrollment increases of more than 2%, six remained
stable with gains or losses less than 2% (like JSU) and two
had losses of enrollment of greater than 2%. The environment
within Alabama will remain highly competitive for traditional
college age students as the projection of Alabama high school
graduates remains relatively flat over the next ten years according
to the Western Interstate Commission on Higher Education.
Jacksonville State University will continue to pursue its enrollment
goal of 10,000 students. We have made significant progress over
the last eight years with a 15.8 % enrollment increase. We will
recruit qualified students first from Alabama but we will also
target states like Florida where projections indicate 135,000
additional college students over the next five years. We will
redefine the role and scope of the position of Associate Vice
President for Student Affairs to include enrollment management
and provide increased resources with the responsibility to not
only bring new students to the campus but work to retain our
current students. The University's Enrollment Management Committee
has provided a number of ideas that will help in retention and
recruitment. We will continue to pursue distance learning as
a viable option for delivery of course work and programs. This
method of instruction was chosen by 2,385 JSU students this
The JSU Foundation is considering a proposal to the Board that
would build apartment like dormitories and provide 300 to 500
additional living spaces on campus or adjacent to campus. The
importance of apartment style facilities should not be overlooked
as studies across higher education indicate that today, new
students are making their choice of college not only because
of the institution but because of where they will live. The
preferred style is in an apartment like setting with private
bedrooms and baths and a common living area shared by a small
number of roommates. Today, this type of facility is being built
most often on college and university campus.
University Housing is in the ninetieth percentile for occupancy
this fall. The University Housing and Residence Life report
is on pages 41 & 42 of the Academic and Student Affairs Report,
under tab 6 in your notebook. The report indicates the occupancy
rate of university housing, apartment and residence halls is
at 98%. The report also indicates the reopening of Curtiss Hall
and other renovations of made to university living environments
This fall for the first time in years the Office of University
Housing and Residence life had waiting lists for men's and women's
dormitories. This is a further indication of the need for additional
Although Alabama's legislators and other government officials
are involved in their own campaigns, the prospects for funding
fiscal year 07-08 appear positive. The Education Trust Fund
continues to grow and the good news is that the Governor and
the leadership in the Alabama House and Senate are talking about
a capital projects bond issues for education.
The Governor is proposing a $500 million bond issue and the
legislative leadership has discussed $1 billion. Either sound
good as higher education has not had capital funding for new
projects or deferred maintenance from the State for over eight
years. The majority of funds would be for K-12 schools, approximately
70%. If funds are divided as in prior bond issues the balance
for higher education, 30%, would be divided with 80% for 4 year
universities and 20% for community colleges. This would mean
between 3 to 6 million for JSU if funded.
Over a year ago I asked our alumnus Tim Garner to join us as
a consultant and help us focus on how he might help us advance
the University's reputation and communicate the excellence that
is Jacksonville State University. Mr. Garner has been successful
in his own marketing firm in Atlanta with clients that included
Kellogg, Coca-Cola, M&M Mars, NASCAR and others. I have asked
him to come today and share with you his ideas and strategies
for communicating the good news about Jacksonville State University.
I am pleased to ask Dr. Rebecca Turner, Vice President for
Academic and Student Affairs to report. Dr. Turner's written
report is in your binder under "Tab 6" which you may read at
I have asked Athletic Director Jim Fuller to share information
about the changes he has made to his organizational structure.
These will include the new position Assistant Athletic Director
for Development and plans for the development of our expansion
for Paul Snow Stadium.
Mr. Joe Serviss, Vice President for Institutional Advancement
will provide a brief update of our capital campaign.
Last meeting I introduced Dr. Simmons as the new Director of
Institutional Research and Assessment. She has been working
with the University Strategic Planning Committee which has completed
a draft of the University Strategic Plan. I have asked that
she present this plan which is in your binder under tab 7, to
you and discuss its timetable for approval.
Mrs. Pamela B. Stinson - new executive secretary to the President
Mr. Chairman that concludes my report.
William A. Meehan