NMC operating at a loss due to low number of students

For many years now the Northern Marianas College has been operating at a loss, mainly because it allowed smaller class sizes, according to college president Sharon Y. Hart yesterday.

To maximize college resources and to implement a “balance” in the college’s operations, Hart said that NMC will no longer offer courses with less than 20 students.

This new policy takes effect beginning this summer through the fall semester and until further notice.

NMC, Hart said, can realize savings by not adding faculty members for small classes.

“We will try not to offer courses with less than 20 students. Many classrooms now only accommodate 18.and we’re already operating at a loss with some of our classes now,” said Hart.

Saipan Tribune learned that eight classrooms were recently renovated at the college in preparation for larger class sizes starting fall. The fall semester starts next month.

As for students who need to take certain courses but the classes don’t get enough enrollees, Hart said that NMC will just hire an adjunct instructor-an option she described as more cost-effective instead of hiring full-time instructors for these small classes.

Adjunct instructors are paid based on hours and credits.

Saipan Tribune learned that some courses and classes will be exempted from the new class ratio. One of these is the nursing program, which is required to adhere to national standards and requirements, and some independent classes for graduating students.

NMC earlier disclosed that it usually has 12 students per classroom. Hart said that that the 20-students-per-class is a ratio acceptable in most community colleges.

As for its program and degree offerings, NMC cannot make any changes while it remains under show-cause status with the accrediting commission. At the same time, the college cannot introduce new programs unless approved by the commission.

Final draft

Hart told Saipan Tribune that the final draft of the college’s comprehensive self-study report is expected next week in time for their target submission on Aug. 17.

Hart disclosed that Galvin Deleon Guerrero, NMC’s former director of institutional effectiveness, had assured the college that he will help with the accreditation report until its submission next month.

Deleon Guerrero recently left NMC to become the new president of Mount Carmel School. Deleon Guerrero also served as the college’s accreditation liaison officer.

NMC has yet to hire his replacement.

By Moneth Deposa

Moneth G. Deposa | Reporter

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