UNDERSTANDING STUDENTS' AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS' NEEDS, CATEGORY THREE
3P3. How do you identify the changing needs of your key stakeholder groups? How do you analyze and select a course of action regarding these needs?
The first key stakeholder group is business and industry and related economic development boards. The college identifies the needs of this group primarily through five processes:
- Advisory councils for career and technical programs: All career and technical programs, both college and secondary, have advisory councils comprised of program stakeholders. More than 130 companies are represented on 17 advisory boards that meet at least twice a year to examine program curriculum and to review program results; to examine and discuss current trends and issues in business and industry; and to discuss and make recommendations about programs and their ability to meet stakeholder needs. These recommendations are considered in program reviews and planning and budgeting processes.
- Business and Technology Center (BTC) needs assessment: The BTC creates training programs for business and industry throughout the region and conducts needs assessments primarily through surveys and personal contacts. Programs and funding sources are based on identified needs.
- Environmental scanning process: Opportunities to meet stakeholder needs are identified through the environmental scanning process (see Question 1P2).
- Members of the administration serve on area economic and work force development boards.
- Comprehensive market surveys are conducted periodically to assess needs and identify programming priorities.
A second key stakeholder is state and federal governments. SFCC is a member of the Missouri Community College Association (MCCA), comprised of the state’s public community colleges. MCCA serves as a major vehicle for the college to stay in contact with legislators and state government departments and agencies. Information from MCCA is often used in environmental scanning, program review and strategic planning.
The third key stakeholder group is other educational institutions. The college utilizes a variety of processes to identify and respond to the needs of this group, including:
- Discipline meetings with secondary schools and four-year colleges and universities: These meetings primarily involve faculty. Information from these meetings is typically used in program review and curriculum development processes.
- Transfer and articulation agreements: The college develops and maintains transfer and articulation agreements with secondary schools and with other colleges and universities. Identified changes, based on stakeholder needs, are considered through the program review and curriculum development processes.
- MCCA: Through MCCA, the state public community college presidents and chief academic officers meet monthly. Other groups such as student services and business office leaders meet at least annually. These groups identify community college and other stakeholder needs and work collaboratively to address issues as appropriate.
- Career and Technical Center Superintendents’ Advisory Committee: The secondary career and technical training program has an advisory committee comprised of participating school district superintendents. Information from this advisory committee is considered and utilized through a number of processes, including program review.
- Superintendents’ advisory meeting: The college president and instructional leaders meet at least annually with superintendents from school districts in the college’s service area. Information from this meeting is used in the college’s program planning and development processes.
A fourth key stakeholder group, outside of students, includes donors and prospective donors. The college president and the executive director of the SFCC Foundation work closely with donor and prospective donors to develop relationships and to identify and develop opportunities for support. The relationship development process includes keeping an extensive database that houses relevant information (e.g., alumni and donor demographics, constituent giving history, solicitations and correspondence) that is essential for predicting the viability of future funding initiatives.
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