Category Two - Accomplishing Other Distinctive Objectives
2C1 Explicit Objectives in Addition to Helping Students Learn
East Central College has several institutional objectives in addition to helping students learn.
Those objectives include commitments to economic and workforce development, adult education
and literacy, fine arts, athletics, resource development (fundraising), community service, non-
credit educational outreach and auxiliary services. Each is discussed in more detail below.
The College devotes significant resources to efforts related to the economic development
of the region, primarily by ensuring that local businesses are able to train employees. In some
cases, the College is providing the training directly. In others, the College provides services that
enable businesses to secure state funding for training. These efforts primarily involve the Missouri
Customized Training Program and the Missouri New Jobs Training Program. The largest of these
current initiatives is the relationship between the college and Harman Becker Automotive Systems,
Inc. (HBAS), Washington, Missouri. To date, the College has administered pre-employment testing
for 429 applicants for the company. In addition, through the state’s New Jobs Training Program,
the College has secured $2,105,000 in training funds for HBAS. The project will result in revenue for
the college of $265,996, representing administrative costs. Through the state Customized Training
Program, ECC has secured funding for 31 companies in 14 communities located throughout the
service region. Total funding approved for FY09 is $534,664, including $69,739 in administrative
costs for ECC. College personnel are also involved in economic/workforce development through
participation in local and regional economic development boards and organizations.
Adult Education and Literacy
East Central’s Adult Education and Literacy (AEL) program serves those who have not
graduated from high school, need to improve literacy or math skills, or need to prepare for the
General Educational Development (GED) exam. Day and evening classes are held at the main
campus and throughout the service region. The College is also a testing center for the GED
exam. Funding comes primarily from the State of Missouri, although the College annually budgets
funds to subsidize the program if necessary. Two buildings on campus are designated for the AEL
program. One serves as an administrative office, the other as the classroom and testing center for
The College has long enjoyed a reputation for being a primary source of cultural enrichment
in the area. Through concerts, art exhibits, and theatrical productions, ECC brings to the region
attractions that might otherwise be available primarily in the St. Louis area. Moreover, the College
also serves as a venue for cultural activities offered by other entities. Examples include exhibits
by the Mid-Missouri Fine Arts Society, private dance recitals, and a regional band festival for high
East Central College has intercollegiate athletic teams in women’s softball and volleyball
(NJCAA Div. II), and men’s soccer (NJCAA Div. I). ECC student-athletes have gone to compete in
the NCAA, NAIA, and at the professional level. In addition, the College athletic facilities are used
by schools and other youth sports teams.
ECC provides significant resources to the East Central College Foundation for the purpose
of raising funds for scholarships and special projects. The Foundation is a 501c(3) organization
established as a non-profit entity for educational purposes. The foundation is treated as a
component unit in the College’s audited financial statements. In support of the foundation,
the College funds the salaries and benefits of the director and administrative assistant, provides
office space for the organization, and shares in some direct and indirect costs related to the
In a variety of ways, ECC is committed to community service. The college’s facilities are used
for meetings, public hearings, presentations, and other community activities. The campus is also
a polling place for Franklin County and the City of Union. ECC also plays a prominent role off
campus. For example, from 2006 through 2008, the College sponsored “A Taste for the Arts” in
the neighboring community of Hermann. The festival featured musical performances, juried art
contests and other activities. The College received private funding in the amount of $197,000
to coordinate and fund the event. ECC benefited from the publicity surrounding the event, but
the activities also tied in closely with efforts to develop the community and surrounding region as
a tourist destination. The College was uniquely situated to plan and develop the event, which
has now grown to the point that it will be privately conducted. In addition to the institutional role
played in the community, the College is also represented by employees who are active in most
civic organizations in the region.
Community Education and Outreach
ECC is involved in a number of initiatives related to community education and outreach. These
activities are not associated with credit offerings, but are educational in nature. Examples include
continuing education offerings, the Prairie Restoration project, use of the Voelkerding Slough, and
the wetlands area established on the campus. These initiatives provide the opportunity for the
public to participate in, and learn from, projects that are conducted by the College.
ECC operates its own food service and bookstore. These activities are established as auxiliary
enterprises and are operated for the benefit of College students and employees.
2C2 Aligning Objectives with Mission, Vision, and Philosophy
The College’s other distinctive objectives are consistent with the mission and strategic goals
of the institution. Themes that comprise the new Strategic Plan are associated with student
support services, student success, academic affairs, leadership and collaboration, institutional
environment, facilities and grounds, and technology. Within each theme are goals and strategies.
Each strategy is associated with one or more AQIP criteria, including Criterion 2. This linkage ensures
that the College’s objectives align with its mission and vision.
Moreover, through its planning, budgeting, and governance processes, the College ensures
that its other distinctive objectives are consistent with the strategic goals of the institution.
2C3 Other Distinctive Objectives and Helping Students Learn
Many of the other distinctive objectives support or enhance the classroom experience of our
students. Examples include the following:
Concerts, theatrical performances and art exhibits complement and supplement the
information presented in the context of the relevant music, theatre and art classes. Students
have the opportunity to experience firsthand the fine and performing arts discussed in the
Through initiatives such as the Prairie Restoration Project and the Voelkerding Slough, students
in selected science classes are able to experience native habitat and ecosystems. Students
play an active role in the collection and planting of seeds related to the prairie restoration
on campus, providing them with both outdoor “lab” experience that complements the
classroom, but field experience that science majors in selected fields can expect in upper
division study or professional careers.
A well-rounded campus experience supports student learning. Through extracurricular
or co-curricular activities such as athletics, clubs, activities and community service, the
campus experience is enhanced.
The campus bookstore ensures that students have ready access not only to required
textbooks, but also aids and supplies necessary for student learning. The cafeteria enables
students to remain on campus throughout the day, rather than leaving for food and drink.
This fosters an environment for study and interaction with peers outside of the classroom.
2P1 Determining Other Distinctive Objectives
The College’s other distinctive objectives are determined in multiple ways. Some are established
consistent with the academic and student services purposes of the institution. Examples include
student athletics and the fine arts. These objectives also result from community needs, which
may be economic, civic or cultural. Examples include various job training initiatives, serving as an
election polling place or providing an extensive array of productions and exhibits in the fine arts.
The institution’s commitment to the objectives is established annually through the budget
process, which allocates resources for initiatives derived from short- and long-range planning.
The Board of Trustees, as locally elected representatives of the taxing district, affirms the direction
and purposes of the College through overarching governance of the institution, annual adoption
of the budget and staffing plan, periodic adoption of, or revisions to, institutional policies, and
approval of initiatives recommended by the administration. A significant example is the adoption
of the facilities master plan in 2005, which resulted in construction of a new Allied Health and
Science facility, a new road to provide access to the campus, and improvements to the College’s
Those involved in determining the other distinctive objectives include all stakeholders: students,
faculty, community, College administration and Board of Trustees.
2P2 Communicating Expectations Regarding Other Distinctive Objectives
The Strategic Plan outlines broad goals and objectives of the institution, including other
College-related expectations. Beyond the overarching expectations communicated through the
Strategic Plan, expectations regarding the other distinct objectives are communicated through
the budgeting, staffing and evaluation processes. The institution asks two fundamental questions:
What is to be done? By whom?
The budget establishes how the institution’s resources will be deployed. The staffing plan that
corresponds to the budget establishes the personnel who are expected to meet the various
objectives, and corresponding job descriptions and/or contracts (as appropriate) provide in detail
the specific expectations of each employee. Personnel evaluations provide the means by which
the institution can determine whether these expectations are being met.
2P3 Determining Faculty and Staff Needs
The budget/staffing process provides a means by which the College can determine needs in
terms of the level of staffing needed to accomplish a specific objective. The College annually
reviews the staffing plan in conjunction with the budget, and determines whether new or existing
positions are necessary, whether positions should be reclassified and whether personnel should be
reorganized to better meet the College’s needs and objectives.
In 2007-08, the College conducted a classification study and market analysis of existing full-time
and part-time positions (exclusive of faculty). The purpose of the project was to evaluate each of
the positions, update job descriptions as necessary and appropriate, benchmark those positions
with comparable jobs in the community or at peer institutions, develop a new classification system
of professional (exempt) and support (non-exempt) staff, and implement this system with related
salary adjustments to bring wages to current market levels. ECC contracted with MGT of America
to conduct the study, which was completed in April, 2008, and implemented with the start of fiscal
year 2009. Salary adjustments resulting from the study totaled $209,218. There were 144 positions
(regular full-time and part-time employees, excluding faculty) evaluated. Approximately 46%
received some level of adjustment, which was awarded prior to across-the-board wage increases
of 6% for all employees. These adjustments made a substantial impact in moving wages to market
level, thereby improving the College’s ability to attract and retain employees. Moreover, the
classification system transitioned from a plan that included six grades for each employee class
(professional and support), to a plan that includes nine grades for each class. The result is better
differentiation between positions.
Concurrently, the budget process also serves as a means by which the College can consider
other needs, including physical and financial resources, necessary for personnel to meet their
Finally, the evaluation process is utilized to develop plans for addressing specific needs of
individual employees to better meet these objectives.
2P4 Assessment and Review of Objectives and Incorporating Feedback
The College continually assesses its objectives and the related activities. This is accomplished
through strategic planning, annual budgeting and staffing processes, and periodic surveys or
other assessments. As demonstrated below, a number of indicators are available to assess and
review these objectives.
2P5 Measures Collected and Analyzed Regularly
The following measures are collected and can be used for analysis of the institution’s ability to accomplish its other distinctive objectives:
Measures collected and analyzed include:
- Contracts awarded
- Dollar volume
- Individuals served
Measures useful for evaluating the College’s role in the fine arts include:
- Number of events held
- Gate receipts
The institution can measure its commitment to athletics through:
- Number of intercollegiate sports offered
- Number of student-athletes participating in those sports
- Funding allocated to athletics
In addition, traditional statistical measures such as win-loss records serve to mark the teams’ successes on the field or court of play.
Tools used to measure effectiveness include:
- Change in assets
- Scholarship funds (dollar volume) awarded
- Scholarships awarded
- Average scholarship award
This objective does not readily lend itself to quantitative analysis. Data are not collected regarding the number of employees participating in community groups, institutional participation in projects, or similar service.
There are isolated measures that could be analyzed, such as the number of individuals utilizing the campus as a polling place, number of events held on campus by outside groups, and attendance at those events, if collected.
Community Education and Outreach
The number of individuals participating in non-credit, continuing education offerings is the best measure of institutional effectiveness in providing community education and outreach.
Initiatives such as the Prairie Restoration Project, Voelkerding Slough and wetlands preservation do not lend themselves to quantitative analysis.
Measures of effectiveness include:
- Revenue/expense statements
Selected results are listed below.
The volume of training resulting from the College’s work can be measured by the number of
contracts awarded, the dollar volume of those contracts, and the number of individuals served or
trained. Figures 2.1 - 2.3 illustrate the activity since fiscal year 2005:
The Missouri New Jobs Training Program is a program that enables a company to pay for training
through a withholding of payroll taxes that otherwise would be paid to the state. By statute,
community colleges are the only entities authorized to issue bonds that generate proceeds to fund
the cost of the training. The bonds are retired through the withholding. The Figure 2.4 illustrates the
number of New Jobs projects authorized since fiscal year 2005, as well as the amount of funding
and the individuals served:
Missouri New Jobs Training Program FY05-Present
Wal-Mart Distribution Center,
St. James, MO
Harman Becker Automotive Systems (HBAS),
Ongoing for eight years
|HBAS – Project 2
Ongoing for eight years
|HBAS – Project 3
Ongoing for eight years
|HBAS – Project 4
Ongoing for eight years
Adult Education and Literacy
One measure of the institution’s effectiveness in providing adult education and literacy programs is the percentage of students passing the General Educational Development (GED) exam offered by the college. Figure 2.5 illustrates the number of students attempting, and the number passing, the GED exam:
Measures useful for evaluating the College’s role in the fine arts include the number of
events held, the attendance at those events, and the revenue received from admission
to those events. In 2007-08, the College held 12 art exhibits (including two student shows),
three theatrical productions (all of which included student and community participation)
and 15 concerts (including eight student concerts).
The College in the past has not had the ability to accurately track attendance, and
further analyze the data by attendee (i.e., student, staff, Patron of the Arts member,
general public). Software now being utilized will allow such analysis in the future.
The institution can measure its commitment to athletics through the number of
intercollegiate sports offered, the number of student-athletes participating in those sports,
and the amount of funding allocated to athletics relative to the rest of the institution’s
spending. In addition, traditional statistical measures such as win-loss records serve to mark
the teams’ success on the field or court of play.
East Central College participates in women’s volleyball (Division II) and softball (Division
II), and men’s soccer (Division I). The Equity in Athletics Disclosure Act requires an annual
report that includes data on participation and funding of athletics. Figure 2.6 illustrates
participation by gender for 2004-05 through 2007-08. Funding for athletics increased from
$137,792 in FY06 to $236,000 in FY09.
The institution can measure its effectiveness by reviewing the funds raised and the
scholarships and other projects funded as a result of these efforts. Since 2002, the assets of
the ECC Foundation have grown by 101.5%, from $1,796,196 to $3,619,449 at the close of
Over the same period of time, scholarship funds awarded increased from $44,437 in 2002
to $78,746 in 2007. The number of Foundation Scholarships increased from 68 in 2002 to
92 in 2007, and average award amounts increased from $653 to $856 during that same
This objective does not lend itself to quantitative analysis. Data are not collected regarding
the number of employees participating in community groups, institutional participation in
projects or similar service. One measure is the number of individuals utilizing the campus as
a polling place. The College serves as a polling place for two precincts (Union Ward 4 and
Franklin County Prairie Dell). Since April, 2004, 9,331 votes have been cast at the College.
Community Education and Outreach
The number of individuals participating in non-credit, continuing education offerings is
the best measure of institutional effectiveness in providing community education and
Continuing education course enrollment increased from 871 individuals in 2001- 02 to
1,089 in 2007-08. Initiatives such as the Prairie Restoration Project, Voelkerding Slough and
wetlands preservation do not lend themselves to quantitative analysis.
The institution’s other objectives are unique to the College and the community it serves, making
comparisons to other institutions difficult.
2R3 How Results Strengthen Institution, Community and Region
Many of the other distinctive objectives supplement or enhance student learning, thereby
strengthening the institution. As detailed above, these objectives often have a direct relationship
to the classroom experience of our students. Moreover, those objectives that serve to enhance
student life on campus also strengthen the institution by making the institution a meaningful,
challenging and enjoyable place to be.
Beyond the impact on students, the objectives serve to strengthen the institution as a resource
within the region.
Certain objectives serve to bring additional revenue to the College, thereby providing financial
resources the College would not otherwise have at its disposal. These revenue-enhancing
objectives include job training, fundraising, continuing education and, to some extent, public
performances that provide gate receipts.
Beyond revenue enhancement, the other distinctive objectives also serve to strengthen the
institution’s position in the community. Through various outreach efforts, the College serves as an
academic, civic and cultural resource for the region. This role is recognized in the community.
For example, in a survey of district residents conducted in 2006, results associated with the other
distinctive objectives found that:
- 96% of residents indicated that it was “very important” or “important” that the College
provide training for local businesses
- 84.6% said it was “very important” or “important” that the College provide cultural events
such as concerts and plays
- 78.9% indicated it was “very important” or “important” to provide non-credit courses and
- 67.5% said it was “very important” or “important” that the College provide intercollegiate
2I1 Improving Systems and Processes
Assessment and improvement can occur formally or informally. With regard to funding received
for job training, for example, there are formal assessments of participants to determine their level
of satisfaction with the training received. This information is utilized to improve the training offered
to companies and their employees.
Informal processes involve simple assessments to determine the viability of an initiative: What
was the level of attendance or participation? What is the cost-benefit analysis of the initiative?
Are dedicated resources still available to support the initiative? Debriefing sessions can be a useful
tool for making improvements, without utilizing a formal assessment instrument. Such a session
was utilized following the 2007 Taste for the Arts event in Hermann, Missouri, wherein the event
committee evaluated the activity and made plans for improvement in 2008.
2I2 Setting Targets and Priorities and Communicating Results
The College does not have a formal process to set targets for improvement in accomplishing its
other distinctive objectives. As indicated, the College acquires a significant amount of quantitative
data related to its other distinctive objectives. These data generally indicate levels of participation
in the various initiatives (e.g., attendance at the theatre, number of employees trained, continuing
education enrollment, ballots cast on campus). There is not, however, a sustained effort to
collect or maintain qualitative data regarding these objectives. The College could benefit from
ongoing efforts to formally determine the types of programs, services or activities to be offered,
and to assess the participants’ satisfaction with those initiatives. This information could be used
to determine future activities, particularly in relation to community education and outreach,
fine arts, continuing education and other initiatives intended in large measure to attract and
serve the external community. These measures would not be intended to supersede or conflict
with principles of academic freedom or free expression regarding the exhibition of theatrical
productions, concerts, art exhibits, lectures or other events.
Moreover, technology allows some of this data to be collected Sat relatively little cost. E-
mail or Web-based surveys of participants, for example, could enhance the quantitative data
already available to the College. Technology also could be utilized for communicating results and
improvement priorities to stakeholders. Expanded utilization of appropriate technology would be
an appropriate target for improvement.