P. O. Box 159
Kolonia, Pohnpei 96941
Federated States of Micronesia
Phone: (691) 320-2480 Fax: (691) 320-2479 E-Mail:

President’s Message To The Community

Dear Colleagues and Fellow Members of the COM-FSM Community,

On November 9th, 2012 the college made a presentation to the States and National Leadership Conference (SNLC). On behalf of the college I reported on the July 2012 changes to Pell Grant eligibility and the impact on our students and the college. Additionally, information was provided on the development of the Five-Year Integrated Educational Master Plan which is linked to the Five-Year Financial Plan, including the “best case” scenario assumptions that informed the plan and will inform the 2014 budget.

I provided a synopsis of steps the college is taking to reduce costs, share resources and achieve greater efficiencies, including but not limited to the 2013 salary step freeze. Please be assured I informed the SNLC that this was a one-time freeze, as we must continue to recruit and retain highly qualified faculty and staff. My presentation continued with an update on the continued work and progress to address our accreditation issues, and concluded with a request our state and national leaders support the college and its future financial sustainability.

The state and national leadership asked solid, probing questions, the answers to which served to further inform their understanding of challenges the college faces, and the need for long term financial support.

On November 14th, 2012, the college appeared at an oversight hearing by the Education Committee of the FSM Congress. We were asked to present on the five-year budget plan for the college, in light of the decrease in Compact funding. We reviewed the five-year plan for the college for degree and non-degree programs and provided an evaluation of the impact of changes in the Pell grant eligibility. A status report of the probation designation and plans for the March 2013 submission to ACCJC, and finally an update on the goals for the president were provided.

Also present at the hearing on behalf of the college, were Mariana Ben-Dereas, VPIA; Ringlen P. Ringlen, VPSS; Joe Habuchmai, VPAS, and Frankie Harriss, VPIEQA. I reported my goals for 2013-2014 consistent with the expectations articulated for me by the Board of Regents. Vice President Harriss presented a comprehensive presentation on accreditation; including eligibility rules, standards, rationale for membership, and an update on the Student Learning Ouctomes Report and the combined Mid-term and follow-up report, due on March 15, 2013. The committee was informed of the schedule of required reports and the visit bringing us to the critical June 2013 ACCJC Commission meeting.

Members of the Education Committee asked solid, probing questions throughout our two and one-half hour meeting. The hearing provided the college with an important opportunity to further inform the understanding of the senators and to explain the complex challenges the college faces and will continue to face as it works to address accreditation issues for which the college is on probation, and to move beyond compliance to constructive engagement.

The hearing concluded with a request our national leaders support the college and its future financial stability.

I am confident the college’s presentations to the SNLC and the Education Committee were well received. We should remain optimistic that our national and state leaders will support the nation’s only institution of higher education for the FSM.

Broad based participation, participatory governance and purposeful dialogue continues at the campuses through the Visioning Summit Phase II. Chuuk Campus held their visioning summit on November 9th from 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM.  Approximately 80 people participated (External and Internal stakeholders). The summit had two breakout groups.  One consisted of the external stakeholders and the SBA officers.  This group responded to #1, 2, & 4.  The other group consisted of the internal stakeholders (faculty and staffs), and the students.  This group responded only to #1 & 2.

 Yesterday, November 15, 2012 Yap and FMI campus had their visioning mini-summit. There were over 180 participants from both internal and external stakeholders. The governor of Yap state was among the stakeholders who participated in the summit.

Kosrae campus will have its mini-summit on Tuesday (in the afternoon). They expect about 80 participants from the external and college community.

Once completed the Visioning Summit Phase II report will be shared with the community and serve to further inform the review of the mission statement and development of the next strategic plan.

As this message to you documents, we continue to make progress. Please be reminded we have much more work to do and we will continue to work together to strengthen this academic institution in service to our students, our citizens and our country.

It is a privilege for me to serve you as president.

Warm regards,


Joseph M. Daisy, Ed.D., President