Tuesday, September 11, 2012

NWACC Enrollment Drops

Enrollment Drop Forces Budget Scrutiny

Posted: September 11, 2012 at 3:32 a.m.

— A drop in enrollment will have NorthWest Arkansas Community College reviewing spending in the month leading up to its October board meeting. The school’s 2.7 percent drop in credit hours represents an estimated $785,000 drop in revenue, President Becky Paneitz told board of trustees members Tuesday. That shortfall cuts into the school’s projected revenue of $38,929,855. Cost-saving measures will focus on travel, professional development and filling empty positions, Paneitz told the board. A revised budget will be brought before the board at its next meeting and will be implemented immediately after a vote. “We’ll be doing that again in spring after we get our enrollment,” Paneitz told the board, “That’s our new normal.”

Enrollment dropped 230 students to 8,418, a first for the school which has grown steadily for years. The school lost 147 transfer students and 109 returning students, according to preliminary reports. New and continuing student numbers held steady. The school had small increases in the number of high school students enrolled in classes. Those high school numbers are something to build on, Todd Kitchen, vice president for Learner Support Services at NWACC told the board. Changes in financial aid processes may have caused some students not to return, Kitchen said. Areas where there was a loss will be analyzed further. His office is working to retain current students and support first-generation college students and new freshmen, Kitchen said. “We’ve had a lot of good growth in the college. We may have been destined to have a bad semester,” said Joe Spivey, vice-chairman. “Are we doing enough?” he asked Kitchen. The school needs to change its focus to attract instead of accept students, Kitchen said. “We know there is a huge opportunity for growth in online,” Kitchen said.

In other business the NWACC board: Approved a $10,000 contract with Kansas City-based artist Jennifer Libby Fay for a fabric sculpture to hang in the Shewmaker Center For Global Business Development w Reclassified one position and added another under Path to Accelerated Completion and Employment, a federal grant.



be asking for a milage hike soon......
Posted by: DNC
September 11, 2012 at 6:04 a.m.

"Approved a $10,000 contract with Kansas City-based artist Jennifer Libby Fay for a fabric sculpture to hang in the Shewmaker Center For Global Business Development" Was this a necessity?? Here is your first cut!!
Posted by: NWAGuy
September 11, 2012 at 7:44 a.m.

I agree with NWAGuy! Taxpayers don't get to spend that much money on frivolous things when their budgets are in the red-how many scholarships could have been provided for $10,000? What is the school really in business for? Of course it's possible that the $10,000 was donated by someone and designated to be used only for decorative purposes, but it saddens me to see what the college has become--i believe that if it set an example of responsible stewardship then potential donors would also be focused on the same and would want to donate for things that actually benefit the students. Yes, U of A wastes money for fancy things--but why must nwacc become like the U of A? Students need and want a college where they can get small classes, dedicated faculty focused on teaching instead of research, at an affordable price. In this article it is stated that the school should focus on attracting students, rather than accepting students, and try to increase high school and online enrollment. Then the school should take a lesson from the playbook of Walmart --keep prices low. When Walmart tries to be more high end, such as with it's clothing lines, it doesn't go well; Nwacc needs to recognize what it's core competences are and exploit those. Trying to be everything to everybody, as it seems they are doing now, may very well lead to being nothing. Didn't UA-Fort Smith used to be a community college? The community needs and deserves a quality, low cost alternative to the other offerings in the area.
Posted by: FreedomAtLast
September 11, 2012 at 8:21 a.m.


  1. I know several students who dropped out of NWACC because they didn't like how they were being treated and they didn't like the low-quality education they were receiving. They also didn't like their unfair testing practices and grades tampering practices.

  2. I had all the same experiences. They have no respect for people yet they want all our money. Greedy control freaks.

  3. Their enrollment will keep on dropping as long as their current toxic and noxious "academic mobbing" culture continues to thrive. In order for NWACC to make a come back, all current CEOs need to go and need to be replaced with good people. I tell everyone not to go to NWACC and they listen to me. So, I'm making a small difference and hope that the word gets passed on.

  4. Guess who is paying for all of NWACC's legal problems - Arkansas Tax Payers. Since it's not their money, they aren't concerned about their questionable tactics. No one is holding them accountable for their actions. So, they just keep on and keep on with it. We tax payers need to speak up and put a stop to their corruption.

  5. I recommend NTI in Springdale for allied health professions over NWACC anyday! Stay away from NWACC. NWACC bullies and slanders far too many people in much the same manner as they did to wrongfully fired CFO, Marty Parsons. The local newspapers won't write about any of this because they, too, are a part of the good-ol-boy network that NWACC belongs to. We should fire the local media personnel, too.

  6. As well is should! Now that the word is out that it's a very dangerous place to attend, I'm not surprised.

  7. Anyone in their right mind should avoid NWACC like the plague. Worst school to attend. You get treated like crap, they take all your money, and then they give you the finger.