Thank you all for everything you do in pursuit of “Keeping Learning at the Center.”

Notable Accomplishments provided by Faculty and Staff

This section recognizes the good work being done and linkages to the Strategic Directions (SD) and Institutional Effectiveness Criteria (IE) are provided where possible.

  • On December 17, 2018, Capt. Mike Surgalski and GLMA Cadet Sabrina Wiater (daughter of GLMA alumnus Tom Wiater) were part of a team that met with Governor Rick Snyder. The purpose of the meeting was to thank the Governor for his support of the replacement locks at Sault Ste. Marie. (IE2)
  • Lisa Blackford (Social Work), Melissa Sprenkle (Communications), and Brandon Everest (Sociology) held the 4th Annual Walk for Health & Housing with well over 100 in attendance in November. The event helps raise awareness of issues that people experiencing homelessness and food insecurity are encountering. (IE1)
  • Katharine Zurek, Annual Giving Specialist at the NMC Foundation, presented at the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education District V Conference in Chicago, IL. Katharine shared the successes of her student philanthropy program. The program teaches students about the impact of charitable gifts at NMC and in their communities by engaging students in activities to thank donors to the college. More information about the program and how students can raise money for their student groups through participation can be found here: (IE1, IE2, IE3)
  • Mac Beeker arranged for 13 second-year nursing students to present on a variety of topics at the Traverse Bay Regional Oncology Nursing Society Annual Conference held on November 10 at the Grand Traverse Resort. Students did research in the Nursing Management of Complex Patients I course, created educational posters and presented their findings to nearly 100 oncology professionals at the conference. Topics included presentations on the use of opioids in palliative care, the development of new scalp cooling technologies to prevent hair loss in patients receiving chemotherapy, compassion fatigue in oncology nursing and the potential benefits of fasting before chemotherapy treatments. Posters are being displayed on a rotational basis near the Health Occupations office in the Biederman Building through January. (IE1, IE2)
  • Jim Bensley, Director of International Services and Service Learning, in partnership with Soliya Connect, recently presented an international webinar, Virtual Exchange: Study Abroad Gone Digital. Hosted by Community Colleges for International Development, the presentation focused on building global competency via real-time cross cultural dialogue. Current NMC students Alex Bernier and Autumn McClure also participated. (IE2, IE5)

Activities of Note: Tim

  • Thank you to all those who attended Mid-Year Opening Conference at the Hagerty Center on January 7. NMC staff and faculty came together for college updates, meeting new employees, and to hear from guest speaker Randy Bass, from Georgetown University, on Higher Education and the Future. Randy conducted an experiential learning workshop with the faculty in the afternoon. Also, thank you to trustees Kennard Weaver and Ross Childs for joining us for this event.
  • Thank you to all of the trustees for giving their time for the Special Study Session on January 9, where four search firms presented and answered questions regarding their services. At the January 14 regular board meeting the Pauly Group was selected to guide the search process for a new president of NMC.
  • I was able to participate in a portion of the Experiential Education Academy training that was held over three days at the beginning of January where 20 NMC faculty and staff were trained and received a Certificate of Completion and Experiential Education Instructor Certification.
  • Our Construction Management and Marine Technology teams hosted their colleagues from Yellow River Conservancy Technical Institute (YRCTI) last week—one of several planned professional development experiences this year designed to broaden their understanding of our integrative approach to program development. In spite of an unplanned overnight in Chicago due to the weather, the teams made the most of their two-day stay working in the labs at both Parsons-Stulen and APL.
    The YRCTI team included Professors Liu Yuntong and Zhu Enli from the Surveying and Mapping Department, Professors Cao Lei and Yang Liguo from the Civil Engineering Department, Vice President Jiao Aiping representing technical academic programs, and Duan Lina, serving as interpreter. Hans Van Sumeren, John Lutchko, Scott Swan coordinated Marine Tech experiences, and Dan Goodchild, Brian Sweeney, Phil McCuien coordinated Construction Technology labs. Along with Marguerite Cotto, all participants have been part of our program delivery on the campus of YRCTI, in the city of Kaifeng, China.
    I, along with other NMC Executive Staff, joined the group for a farewell reception Thursday evening before their return to China early Friday morning. Our next teaching cycle at Yellow River will begin in early April and run through the end of May.
    Yellow River faculty will return to Traverse City again this June.

Legislative Issues


  • Following a historic lame duck session in Lansing where the legislature held a combined total of 883 votes and sent 401 bills over the finish line to the Governor’s desk for his signature, we now move forward into the 100th meeting of the Michigan Legislature.

Lame Duck Recap

  • Before looking forward to 2019, a quick recap of this frantic action in the waning days of the Snyder administration. Several policy bills were signed into law that will impact NMC. These include PA 479 which amends the Michigan Liquor Control Code to remove Parsons-Stulen and adds West hall to the list of approved facilities where liquor may be served; PA 512 of 2018, which addresses participation of part time student workers in MPSERS, PA 616 of 2018, which addresses the distribution of personal property tax reimbursements and accelerates implementation of the dynamic formula from a 20-year phase in to a 10-year phase in; and PA 579 of 2018, which amends the Public Employees Health Benefit Act by lowering the number of employees a public employer must have to be provided with claims utilization and cost information from 100 to 50 and requires the information to be provided in more usable formats. There were also several pieces of legislation that did not make it through including, legislation banning local tree ordinances and legislation that would prohibit union release time for public employee unions.
  • We were also closely watching the massive supplemental appropriations funding bill, which we hoped would include our capital outlay authorization for the Osterlin Learning Support Services Project. Unfortunately our capital outlay authorization was not included in the final budget supplemental. Statewide, there were 4 new planning authorizations and 2 new construction authorizations in the final bill. Planning Authorizations included:  Delta College, Electronic Media Broadcasting Wing Renovations; Glen Oaks Community College, Campus Renovation; Henry Ford College, Entrepreneur and Innovation Institute Building Renovation and Addition; Macomb Community College, Skilled Trades and Advanced Technology Center Renovation. Construction Authorization/Funding included: Schoolcraft College, Applied Science Renovation and Expansion; Direct Grants (Michigan Enhancement Grants) included Gogebic Community College, workforce training facility. We will certainly be working to advance our capital outlay request once again in 2019.

100th Legislative Session

  • As we move forward into the 100th Legislative Session we will be looking forward to working with new members, committee chairs and committee structures. This includes a reshaped Senate committee structure that combines the Higher Education and Community Colleges appropriations subcommittees into one Universities and Community Colleges Subcommittee to be chaired by Sen. Kim LaSata (R-Bainbridge Township). Senator Ken Horn of Frankenmuth will be chairing the Capital Outlay Subcommittee and also a new committee, the Talent and Economic Development/MEDC committee.  The Senate Education and Career Readiness committee will be chaired by Sen. Lana Theis (R-Brighton).
  • Senator Wayne Schmidt currently serves as chair of the K-12 and Michigan Department of Education and Transportation subcommittees; he is also the assistant Senate majority leader and serves on several other subcommittees.
  • On the House side, Speaker Lee Chatfield has announced a new committee process where most legislation will now be reviewed a second time before being sent to the House floor by four committees: the House Appropriations Committee, House Judiciary Committee, House Ways and Means Committee, and House Government Operations Committee. Speaker Chatfield has also announced the reorganizing of committees/names, eliminating the Workforce and Talent Development Committee and combining the Community Colleges with Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee.
  • Representative Larry Inman chairs the Military & Veterans Affairs & State Policy Subcommittee and the Joint Capitol Outlay Committee. He also serves on the Health & Human Services subcommittee, School Aid & Department of Education subcommittee, and is a member of the Appropriations Committee.


    • As you know, the federal government has been partially shut down, impacting NMC and other community colleges nationwide. While funding has been passed for the Department of Education, several other agencies are shuttered or partially shuttered affecting NMC programs and students. NMC programs that have been impacted include:
      • NMC Aviation Program: Impacted by the lapse in funding for the Federal Aviation Administration, which certifies our manned and unmanned training programs and administers tests to program graduates. Our current FAA certification expires February 28, 2019.
      • Great Lakes Maritime Academy: Impacted by the lapse in funding for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Coast Guard, which certifies our graduating cadets prior to their ability to enter industry jobs. The Maritime Academy also receives funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration and with their lapse in funding; no allocations are made to NMC.
      • Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center: Receives approximately $280,000 annually from the U.S. Department of Commerce Manufacturing Extension Partnership Program, funding that is not available without approval of FY19 funding for this important program.
      • Dennos Museum Center: Since 2010, Dennos/NMC has received $57,000 in funding directly from the National Endowment for the Arts, funding that is not available during a lapse in funding.
    • Given the numerous impacts, I have communicated with our federal elected officials to make sure that they are aware of the impact this continued shutdown is having locally. As of Friday afternoon, it appears a deal has been reached to reopen the federal government and provide funding through February 15. We will of course be monitoring these developments and will keep you apprised of impacts to NMC.
    • Looking ahead to the 116th meeting of Congress, we will be watching the following legislation closely: the FY20 appropriations process; the potential for the Higher Education Act to be reauthorized; the Department of Education’s regulatory review and rewrite of accreditation and other key regulations; proposed Title IX regulation changes; and immigration related legislation/regulations. We will also look forward to continuing to work with our congressional delegation on issues related to the Great Lakes Maritime Academy, FAA and the U.S. Coast Guard’s Great Lakes Center of Expertise.


  • January 30—MCCA Legislative Summit, Lansing
  • February 16—GLMA Alumni Dinner & Mariners’ Ball, Park Place Hotel