Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

June 14, 2013

Changes coming to IHCC campus

By Michael Schaffer Managing Editor
The Daily Iowegian

---- — Monday’s Indian Hills Community College board of trustees meeting agenda contained several items that may interest Centerville residents.

One was the year-end report by Joe Starcevich, dean of the IHCC Centerville campus; another was an update on the future sustainable agriculture building and site by Brydon Kaster, associate professor for sustainable agriculture; and the third was an update by Dr. Jim Lindenmayer, IHCC president on the future building plans for the Centerville campus.

Lindenmayer said the exterior style for the recreational building has been determined and drawings are being reworked. The college should have the new plans in a few weeks, he said.

Lindenmayer said they expect to break ground on the recreational building this fall.

Starcevich said the Centerville campus had 380 students enrolled for the fall 2012 term.

Because of low enrollment, the administrative assistant program will be discontinued for 2013-2014.

The construction technology program is in the process of finishing a 3,500 square-foot duplex for the Bentley Management Group and just started a 1,440 square-foot ranch in cooperation with Chariton Valley Regional Housing Trust Fund.

And it appears the IHCC and CVRHTF collaboration is just beginning.

“The Housing Trust Fund has several more lots purchased with plans to involve IHCC in the construction of at least two more homes, possibly up to ten homes over a ten year period of time,” Starcevich said.

The first registered nursing program was launched at the Centerville campus in the 2012 summer term with 24 students. In the spring term of 2013, 22 of those students graduated, Starcevich said. In the future, the programs plans to grow to up to 40 students.

The practical nursing program graduated 35 students for the 2013 spring term. The program has an enrollment of 55 students for the 2013 summer term.

Enrollment in the sustainable agriculture program for the fall term 2012 was 26 students.

The Indian Hills Falcons finished the season with a 32-22 record. Head coach Cam Walker finished his 21st season and his overall record at IHCC is 806 wins to just 356 losses.

The IHCC Centerville campus had 120 graduates this year, Starcevich said, with 110 participating in the graduation ceremony.

“The dedicated faculty and staff optimistically continue to look forward to meeting out community needs and exceeding their expectations in the future,” Starcevich said.

Kaster, in his ninth year with the sustainable ag program, presented several Powerpoint slides showing the next step the IHCC Centerville campus is going to take toward a new food production and processing complex.

The new complex is being funded by a $500,000 gift from Morgan E. Cline and will be called the Morgan E. Cline School of Sustainable Agriculture.

Kaster said a 1/2 acre passive ventilation solar greenhouse and complex will be built with plans to develop three-five acres of land around campus for outdoor growing. The greenhouse-complex will include a learning center, welcome space, classrooms, offices and processing center for food distribution.

The plan is to grow vegetables in soil, like tomatoes, and then provide the food for the college’s dining services and other end users like surrounding businesses with a need for locally grown food.

The creation of a sustainable greenhouse production business will supplement current and future IHCC sustainable ag students with a more diverse list of agronomy courses to choose from, Kaster said, predicting the program will garner local, state, national and possibly world interest.

“And all of the education that comes out of this facility will be geared around the local foods model, food production, agronomy, soils,” Kaster said. “It’s going to impact a lot of different areas. Both our students here at the college as well as the community.”

Kaster said the IHCC Ottumwa campus dining service spends approximately $90,000 per year on produce.