Background Information: Mineral Area College (MAC), formerly Flat River Junior College, was founded in 1922 as a part of the Flat River School District. The College became a district community college founded by election in 1965. Located in Park Hills, Missouri, Mineral Area College is situated in a semi-rural area 70 miles south of St. Louis, Missouri. This open-door public, co-educational institution serves approximately 3,500 students enrolled in 37 programs and extends to five outreach centers located in Farmington, Fredericktown, Perryville, Potosi, and Winona. The College employs 9 administrators, 2 housing staff, 77 full-time faculty, 110 full-time staff, 197 adjunct faculty, and 264 part-time staff, bringing the total number of employees to 659. The College is focused on its integrity, flexibility, creativity, responsiveness, quality instruction, and commitment to working for the benefit of the educational and cultural needs of citizens in the service region.
The District: The District is a community college district and political subdivision of the State of Missouri. The District’s boundaries (and, thereby, the area in which the District levies taxes) consist of St. Francois County, Madison County and portions of Ste. Genevieve, Washington, Jefferson, and Perry counties. The District’s service region is significantly broader than its legal boundaries. The service region consists of all of St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, Perry, Madison, Iron, Washington, Shannon, and Texas counties. The service area’s population is approximately 185,000.
Programs: The College’s programs include three degrees offered through the Arts and Sciences Division at the Associate’s level: The Associate of Arts, the Associate of Arts in Teaching, and the Associate of General Studies. The other 34 programs are offered in Career and Technical Education at the certificate and Associate’s level and include programs in healthcare, business, computer information, criminal justice, child development, and technology. Since its inception, MAC has conferred over 10,000 degrees and remains the focal point of the surrounding community for education, the arts, community service, and continuing education.
Distance Education: In April 2013, the College was granted approval to expand its distance delivery from 5 to 20 percent. Previously, the College was approved to offer only its Criminal Justice Program online and has been approved to do so since 2005. The College has made recent improvements to its computer infrastructure and personnel in anticipation of expansion of its distance delivery programs.
Mission Statement: The mission of Mineral Area College is to serve the community, to provide students a quality, affordable education, and to offer opportunities for professional and personal development in a safe, professional environment.
Vision Statement: Mineral Area College is recognized as an innovative educational institution and:
- Encourages and supports individuals, businesses, and organizations to meet their educational needs;
- Serves as a resource for community and cultural enrichment;
- Attracts, develops, and retains dedicated, diverse, and professional employees;
- Recruits, develops, and retains a diverse student population by providing an accessible, quality, and affordable education;
- Provides staff, faculty, and students with appropriate resources for programs and services;
- Strengthens relationships with school districts and community agencies;
- Provides for the security needs of staff, faculty, students, and visitors through a community-based, collaborative approach to campus safety.
Mineral Area College adopts the following organizational priorities:
- Assessment: Employs results and strategies to continuously improve the learning environment, operational processes, and the effectiveness of all employees.
- Student Success: Provides courses and programs in which learners attain a general education, prepare for careers, continue lifelong-learning goals, and expand social and cultural awareness.
- High School Relationships: Ensures a smooth transition for high school students entering Mineral Area College and provides resources to maximize their college experience.
- Diversity: Promotes a climate in which diversity and individuality are respected and incorporated into learning opportunities for everyone.
- Partnerships with Colleges and Universities: Collaborates with other colleges and universities to provide baccalaureate and master degree programs to the service region.
- Business and Industry Training: Develops economic growth and vitality by providing training to meet the needs of employers and employees in the region.
- Technology: Researches, responds, and adapts to technological changes; offers user-friendly access to campus resources and information; supports, assists, and empowers individuals in the development and use of information technology; maintains innovative leadership.
- Operational Effectiveness and Efficiency: Maintains open lines of communication and cooperation among faculty, staff, and administrators. Creates a working environment in which professional experience and education is valued and encouraged by providing the resources, tools, and freedom to achieve the College’s mission and philosophy of purpose.
- Online Education: Evaluates and improves delivery mediums for students to complete a certificate or degree.
AQIP Recent Events:
The College underwent a Quality Check-Up Visit in September of 2012. The Reaffirmation Report stated, “According to the Quality Check-Up team, MAC embraced the suggestions made in the 2010 System Appraisal Report and provided evidence of the attention to detail when showcasing the campus to the team. MAC has also demonstrated commitment to quality improvement through the Action Projects for Long Range Strategic Planning and the two Action Projects focused on student success: Course Assessment: Assessing Intermediate Algebra and Business Math and Developing Student Guidelines for Online Learning.” The Reaffirmation report concluded “MAC shows evidence of its commitment to high performance, AQIP, and continuous quality improvement. It approaches its quality efforts systematically and deliberately, fostering a culture that bases decision-making on analyzing data, setting goals, and measuring progress. The College has demonstrated good faith in dealing with AQIP by taking peer review comments seriously and applying itself to the constructive feedback it has received, especially regarding its commitment to the strategic plan and new AQIP Systems Portfolio.”
The College submitted its second portfolio in November of 2013 and received feedback in the spring of 2014. Although the team made several recommendations, the college has no follow up required. The recommendations that the team made include: ensuring Continuous Quality Improvement extends to other areas of the college beyond action projects, utilizing data to drive more decisions, and promulgating the culture of utilizing data to drive decisions.
As a result of the Systems Appraisal Feedback Report, the college has also initiative the Accountability Management System (AMS) Taskstream to better manage assessment, focusing primarily on course-level assessment. In addition, the College has initiated several action projects resulting from its recent expansion in distance education and redoubled effort on improving assessment.
Currently, the College is preparing to attend Strategy Forum in February 2015. The Strategy Forum team has been selected and is working through the pre-work and plans to attend the session in February of 2015. The team is comprised of the President, the Arts and Sciences Dean, The Accreditation Liaison Officer, the Vice President of the Board of Trustees, the Human Resources Director, the Instructional Researcher, and a faculty member.
- MAC Categories for Improvement: Category 5: Knowledge Management and Resource Stewardship and Category 6: Quality Overview
- MAC primary Category for Improvement: Category 5: Knowledge Management and Resource Stewardship
- MAC Focus:
- Develop a process of data-driven decision making. The College collects various data, but does not consistently use the data to drive decisions.
- Support a culture of meaningful assessment. Meaningful assessment will help the college accurately identify areas of improvement and make decisions based on the analysis of data.
In addition, MAC is preparing for an “Additional Locations” visit scheduled in April of 2015 at its Outreach Centers, including the Cape Girardeau Career Center and the Perryville Area Career and Technical Education Center and is continuing with several action projects, with emphasis on online learning and assessment.