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    February - Palikir, Pohnpei


February 21, 2007

To:         All Concerned 

From:     President, COM-FSM 

Subject: Update #289

WASC Senior Commission Delegation Visited National Campus

Two members of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) Senior Commission visited the COM-FSM National Campus on February 7-8, 2007. The purpose of their visit was to validate the information used in the Substantive Change Report that the University of Guam submitted to WASC on the 4 th Year Program in Elementary Education that they will be collaborating on with the COM-FSM National Campus. Their site visit is also in accordance with WASC regulations to assure that UOG and COM-FSM are capable and prepared to effectively deliver a program that will allow the students to meet the intended student learning outcome. The visiting team informed College officials that the substantive change report on the 4 th Year Program has been adopted by WASC Senior Commission and the College can start advertising and recruiting the students for the program as soon as possible. The implementation of this program will begin Summer Session 2007.

Fiscal Year 2008 Budget Review

Information had been received from the Chairperson of the FSM National Budget Review Committee that College of Micronesia-FSM/Board of Regents will have its FY 2008 budget review with the committee on February 22, 2007, at 1:30 p.m.

COM Board of Regents Meeting In Palau

Regent Andrew Yatilman, who represents the Federated States of Micronesia on COM Land Grant Board of Regents, and President Spensin James, attended the COM Board meeting during the week of February 12-13, 2007, in Koror, Palau. The COM-Board elected its 2007 officers as follows: Republic of Palau Regent Masa-Aki Emesiochl as Chairman, Republic of Marshall Island Regent Wilfred Kendall as Vice Chairman, and the Federated States of Micronesia-FSM Regent Andrew Yatilman as Secretary/Treasurer. Congratulations to the newly elected officers of the COM Board of Regents. The next meeting of the COM Board will be held in Majuro, Marshall Islands on June 5-6, 2007. Attached directives were also adopted at the meeting in Palau.

Updates from Department of Administration

Office of the VPA: The VPA returned from the Winter Management and Leadership Institute in Tucson, Arizona, on January 25. Held for the first time, the WACUBO (Western Association of College and University Business Officers) sponsored institute was specially designed for college officers with wide responsibilities but limited resources. The institute brought together 65 people from the western region of the US and was a great success. The VPA will convey some of the material he learned to administration and other interested staff on the February 23 Staff Development Day.

In an effort to fully implement the newly revised Vehicle Policy, the VPA's office and Maintenance Division have revised the vehicle request form (VRF) and vehicle log sheet. Any off-campus trip using a college vehicle will require completion of a vehicle request form and submission of the form to the office of the Director of Maintenance (or Campus Director). The VRF, together with other forms, will be disseminated to all campuses by Monday, February 12, 2007. Every college vehicle will also have a log sheet indicating the user, purpose, mileage out and mileage in for every off-campus trip. Upon return, vehicles will be inspected by maintenance staff for trash and damage. All college employees are urged to comply with these procedures.

Business Office: Audit requirements for the FY 2006 audit continue to be fulfilled and all remaining requirements are expected to be submitted in the next few weeks. The Business Office completed and provided various financial reports to various offices. These included the budget, and expenditures/encumbrance report to each office for their first quarter FY 2007; the FY 2007 first quarter expenditure allocation among the nine college objectives to IRPO for submission to FSM National Government; the SF 269 (CFR-1) and SF 272 (CFR-2) reports for the first quarter of FY 2007 for the $3.852 Million Compact Sector Grant appropriation to the President for submission to FSM Finance; and similar annual reports for the SEG. A cash analysis is underway to explore the prospect of having the College's cash managed by Smith Barney. If the analysis is favorable a proposal for cash management will be submitted to the Board of Regents for approval next month.

Interim procedures in the handling of cash collections and petty cash have been prepared and submitted to the VPA. Financial Consultant Maribel San Jose will return to complete updating fiscal policies, general policies at the Cafeteria and to install the point of sale (POS) system at the Bookstore. The POS system at the Bookstore will help alleviate the textbook inventorying and billing problems thus enhancing textbook procurement and sales. The Comptroller and the Bookstore Manager (and VPA) met with Division Chairs and discussed ways and means to ensure that textbooks are available before the start of classes. The Bookstore Manager made a commitment to provide constant communication with the VPIA and faculty concerning the status of book orders.

Human Resources: The HR Office announces the following new hires and transfers:

1. Myjolynn Kim - Social Science Instructor - Chuuk Campus

2. Abraham Raypahnd - Education Instructor - Chuuk Campus

3. LJ Raypahnd - Education/Cultural Specialist - Chuuk Campus (transfer from National)

4. Danilo Mamangon - Math Instructor - Chuuk Campus (transfer from National)

5. Herner Braiel- Business Instructor - Chuuk Campus (switched positions)

6.  Belinda Suzuki - Business Instructor - National Campus

7. Edmundo "Ed" Farolan - English Instructor - National Campus

8. Joseph Habuchmai - Education Instructor - National Campus

9. Johnson Sepeti - Dorm Manager - National Campus

10. John Curley - SEPPIE Coordinator - National Campus

11. Brian Lynch -Math/Science Instructor - National Campus (transfer from Education)

12. Emelihter Kihleng - English Instructor - Pohnpei Campus

13. Nolynn Oliver - Clerk I - Pohnpei Campus (FAO) - (transfer from PBDC)

14. Twyla Poll - Fiscal Officer - Pohnpei Campus (promotion)

15. Joy Guarin - Science Instructor - Yap Campus

16. Roy McGilliard - English Instructor - Kosrae Campus

We welcome all the new employees to the College of Micronesia-FSM community. We also wish those who have transferred success in their new responsibilities or at their new campuses or offices.

Staff Development Day is scheduled for Friday, February 23, 2007. Information about the day will be communicated to all in the next few days. Work on the evaluation of the organizational structure is on-going, with the surveys already distributed online and in hard copy throughout the college. The survey is a collaborative effort with the Research & Planning office.

The HR office wishes to urge all supervisors to complete their employees' evaluations on time and submit them to the HR office promptly. The office will continue efforts to send reminder notices.

Information Technology: The IT Director recently returned from a regional technology conference in Hawaii. He escorted a Japanese IT study team to Kosrae and Chuuk. The team visited the FSM states to explore the feasibility of telecenters in FSM. IT Consultant Ken Girrard is here working on the student information system (SIS). He has met various key personnel at the college to discuss their information needs and how these might relate to the SIS.

Development & Community Relations: The Office of Development and Community Relations (DCR) continues to work with the US Embassy and others to coordinate the Forum Lecture series. They are now working on reports to be presented during the March retreat. The office is also in the process of placing COM-FSM on Wikipedia. Personnel: Mr. Bandy Fred has been hired on special contract to assist with the workload in the DCR office.

The College of Micronesia - FSM (COM-FSM) honored Billidos Albert through a special retirement luncheon at Sei Restaurant after 38 years of service to the college. Billidos has been a cook with the COM-FSM Cafeteria since October 1, 1968. He was presented a gold watch and a certificate of appreciation from the Staff Development Committee as required by the college's human resources policies. About 102 faculty, staff, and students showed up for the luncheon which was hosted by the President's office. Billidos also received a gift of a cartoon imagery of himself, a DVD player from the Business Office, and a boom box from the Cafeteria . <>Billidos started his faithful service to the college as a cook on October 1, 1968, when Dr. Rosamonde Porter was the first Director of the Micronesian Teacher Education Center (MTEC). Since the time of Dr. Porter until Mr. Spensin James became president of COM-FSM, Billidos has served under thirteen administrators since the institution was established. <>Billidos received his educational training from Pohnpei Intermediate School from 1953 until 1957. He took his first job as a cook at the U.S. FAA communication base in Pohnpei in the same year. At the base, Billidos received his first informal training on the English language by reading the available publications and by his daily interactions with the American personnel at be base.  <> Billidos Albert was born on October 29, 1936 on the island of Sapuafik, an outer island of Pohnpei.

Facilities/Maintenance & Security: The Director of Maintenance took a trip to Yap and Chuuk to work with the campuses there on facilities inventory in preparation for development of the system wide Facilities Master Plan. The Director will also take care of other facilities needs while at the two campuses. The college's Project Manager traveled to Kosrae to do the same for Kosrae campus.

Research & Planning: The IRPO Director was on a trip to Kosrae and Chuuk escorting a Japanese IT study team. The team visited the FSM states to explore the feasibility of telecenters in FSM. IRPO has distributed the organization structure evaluation survey form online and in hard copy. Results will be a very useful planning tool retreat.

Orgnaizational Structure Evaluation. The orgnaization structure online survey that is being used to assist with the evaution of the changes to the organizational chart was closed on Friday aftgernoon 2/16/2007. The results have been compiled and will be used for inteviews and focus groups during the upocming Prfoessional Development Day and the President's Retreat in March 2007 to gain additional information to complete the evaluation.

FSM TC&I Asia Pacific Telecommunity Telecenter Project. The IRPO and IT directors participated in a visit of Japanese ICT Researchers to the FSM. Based on the research conducted in Pohnpei, Kosrae and Chuuk an application for developing Telecenters will be submitted to the APT by the FSM Department of TC&I. The Telecenter Project would open up Internet access for schools and the community at Madolenihmw High School and Municipal Office, Walaung Elemenrary School and community Church in Kosrae, and Sino Memorial Elemetnary School and Tonoas Muncipal Office on Tonoas island in Chuuk Lagoon.

Discussions were also held with the Japanese Researchers on assistance for the FSM to participate in the WINDS satellite experiment to be conducted by the Government of Japan.

President's Retreat. Planning is continuing for the President's Retreat to be held March 19 - 23, 2007 at the Practice Gym on the National Campus in Palikir. The Planning Council held a meeting on 2/16/2007 and explored additional data to be presented at the Retreat and conducted a practice exercise using the Whys planning tool.

State Campuses:

Kosrae. Enrollment for Spring 2007 is 208 students; a little short of projections, prompting a need to economize. The Small Business Development Center, SBDC, is now having purling installed, with the roof expected to be completed this week. The Business Development Council has requested the Director to submit the list of furniture and equipment needs for their review. The campus clinic also opened this week with the new nurse, Mr. Alexander Tara, in charge. The basic medicines and supplies to kick off services at the clinic came from Pohnpei, thanks to the assistance of both President Spensin James and National Campus nurse, Mrs. Benina Ilon. The campus is planning to host the PIBBA Annual Conference in Kosrae this summer. Also in planning stage is an ELL Academy for 6-12 grade teachers sponsored by the ELA professional development program. Both activities are planned for June 4-15, 2007.

Yap. Enrollment for Spring 2007 is 203 students - a little above projection. A total of 47 classes are being taught this semester; 38 academic and 9 vocational. There is a shortage of textbooks for this semester.

Student Services staff have worked with IT personnel to create group email addresses for each class per instructor to foster and improve communication between instructors and their students. SS staff also conducted an Advisement Workshop for all faculty and staff serving as advisors to students and distributed advisee lists to all advisors to begin meeting with their individual advisees. A Peer-to-Peer seminar was conducted to inform students of the benefits of attending these seminars throughout the semester. These daily seminars will bring together tutors and students. All instructors have been informed and are encouraged to send students to these seminars. The staff conducted financial aid workshops to discuss programs available and how they relate to financial aid, attendance policy, and educational cost. New SBA Officers will be elected by February 14 th.

Personnel: Mrs. Archana Murukesan, Librarian, has turned in her resignation effective March 30 th. She had recently completed the automation of the library resources making it easier and convenient for everyone to find books and other materials. She had also completed training the FSM FMI Librarian and a few staff on campus and provided all students and faculty training on how to use the library by having instructors bring in their classes. Archana will be missed by everyone at Yap campus - students, faculty, and staff. Ms. Maria Falmad, has been contracted to work in the IT section to assist with monitoring the computer labs, network, software, and hardware. Robert Yangerluo, Social Science Instructor, returned to University of Guam in early January to continue his master's program in Micronesian Studies. Steven Young-Uhk, Land Grant Marine Science Extension Agent, has been awarded an AusAID scholarship to pursue a postgraduate program in aquaculture at the University of the South Pacific. He will begin his studies in late February for one year.

New AC units have been have been installed in the newly renovated Electronics Shop and Instructional Coordinator's Office. The fence in front of the building has been given a facelift and the walkway from administration building to the Koyeng has been completed and landscaped. The Maintenance Division at the national campus is still assisting with the 2 FEMA projects for the campus ( Science Bldg. & Student Center). The designs need to be certified by a US certified engineer and construction rates upgraded in order to meet the requirements by JEMCO. In the meantime, a list of furniture for the 2 buildings is being prepared. An application for earth moving permit has been submitted to EPA.

Chuuk: Enrollment for Spring 2007 is 559 students; below projection. The Student Health Center is now open with a full time nurse "donated" by the Chuuk State Health Services. Initial supply of over-the-counter medicine has also been provided by the same Chuuk State agency. The College appreciates their assistance. The new student service center which was the last building to be completed in the campus's second phase renovation project opened for business with the two student counselors now in their new offices, soon to be followed by the student body association officers when furniture and other fixtures are installed next month.

The contract for fencing the campus has been awarded and construction of the fence is expected to be completed by late March or early April. Final details of an agreement are being worked out to secure the parking lot area right across the campus. Expected to be secured by mid-February, the lot should ease the parking problem being faced by students and staff. During the Christmas break, three 1,500-gallon tanks were installed to help supplement water supply for toilet facilities on campus. Two new bathrooms (in building B and the new student service building) are also added for student use. A new 25 KV generator was also installed during the break to provide back up power for the vocational education building.

Pohnpei: Enrollment for Spring 2007 is 485 students; below projection. 33 sections of developmental English and 11 sections of developmental mathematics courses are being offered. Of the 36 voced classes this semester, 4 are new (PC Hardware & Software, Video Systems & Product Servicing, Office Equipment & Repair, and Cellular Phone Repair). The Hospitality and Tourism Management (HTM) program is planning to offer classes at national campus as a recruitment strategy. More information on this will be provided when approvals have been secured. Nine (9) students have applied for graduation in spring 2007. Contracts were made for 5 math, science and English tutors to assist students in those areas. 18 full-time and 14 part-time instructors are teaching this semester, supplemented by 1 Japanese volunteer and 2 teaching assistants. There is a shortage of textbooks this semester.

Construction of the temporary maintenance shop is near completion while renovation of the TSP building has been completed. With funds secured for the construction of a student activity center, work on the center is expected to begin soon.

FSM FMI: Enrollment for Spring 2007 is 32 students (10 second-year and 22 first-year students). The lead instructor in navigation, Captain Tioti Teburea, submitted his resignation from his position, and he and his family left Yap on January 15, 2007. Our appreciation to Tioti for his years of service to the FSM FMI. Efforts are being made to fill the vacancy.

With the completion of the Yap ship, "HAPILMOGOL", donated by the People's Republic of China, FMI has been involved in the manning and crewing of that ship. Of the 25 crew complement, 19 of them or 76%, have been trained at FMI. The on-board training that is made possible by the Division of Sea Transportation of Yap State has had the blessing of the current administration. They have seen the positive impact it has made on the crew of the MS MICRO SPIRIT, and they have informed us that we will maintain it and keep our good relationship alive.

FMI plans to develop certain courses in domestic maritime legislation basing them on the FSM maritime legislation since the students are only learning the international maritime legislation and regulations but nothing of the FSM.

President's Site Visit to COM-FSM Yap Campus

President James traveled to Yap State during the week of February 15-17, 2007, for his periodical site visit to Yap Campus. President James and VPIA Jean Thoulag met with staff at the FSM-FMI and Yap Campuses and discussed issues and matters relating to College. A delegation consisting of Director Lourdes Roboman, Instructional Coordinator Gilmoon, Student Coordinator Cecilia Dilbay, Vice President for Instructional Affairs Jean Thoulag, and President James met with the Leadership of Yap State that included Governor, Lt. Governor, Speaker, and Yap Senators and discussed with them the following:

  • Development of the nursing program, adoption of the program by the COM-FSM Board of Regents, and condition of securing additional funds for the program.Bridging the gap between the high schools in the FSM and College.
  • Issues related to teacher certification in the FSM and collaborations between the Departments of Education in the FSM States and the College. The on-going teacher training programs and the collaborations between University of Guam and the College of Micronesia-FSM in regard to 4 th Year Program in Elementary Education that will be implemented in Summer 2007.
  • Teacher Corp Program and the goal of the program in recruiting eligible high school graduates into teacher education program.
  • Expiration of the Lease on the former Sea Bees Camp in 2009 and assistance of the Yap State Government on renewing the lease.
  • Land Grant Programs and Yap State Government priority needs that may be addressed by Land Grant Programs.
  • Endowment Fund and the need for the Governments in the FSM to contribute to the Endowment.

President James' site visit to Yap Campus and Yap State was a success.

Thank you.

Update 289 Attachment