NPC Board Recognizes Student Achievements

National Park College (NPC) Board of Trustees held their regular monthly meeting Wednesday, April 25. Items for report included recognition of student achievements, updates on the campus master plan and a technical and skilled trades report.

The Board welcomed March student of the month Logan Diffee. Diffee is a student in the Industrial Technology program. Instructor Bill Frueck described Diffee as a leader among his peers. He was named to the President’s List and is a member of Phi Theta Kappa.

April student of the month is Bobbi Songer. Songer is a registered nursing student and begun as a practical nursing student at NPC. She is a single mother and a member of the National Nursing Honors Society.

Practical Nursing students and faculty attended the Arkansas License Practical Nurse Association conference. Seen here displaying the trophies they won.Practical Nursing students and faculty attended the Arkansas License Practical Nurse Association conference last month and competed in 11 competitions. Students placed in the top two in eight categories, five of which were first place. Awards included first place for Spirit Award, NPC; Spelling Bee, Sandra Davis; Job Interview, Karia Daniels; Mystery Test, Brittany Estes; Man CPR, Ashley Albert and Memory Collatt; and second place for Medical Terminology Test, Bronson Still; Nutrition Test, Morgan Rodriguez; and Prepared Speaking, Jesse Chase.

Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) students were recognized for awards they received at the 2018 Oklahoma/Arkansas Regional Convention in March and the 2018 International PTK Catalyst Convention last week.

The Alpha Beta Psi Chapter earned 15 awards during the regional convention. International convention awards included a Paragon Award for new advisor Dr. Rebekah Robinette. She was one of 15 advisors to receive the award. PTK member Ricky Malliard was awarded Coca-Cola's New Century Workforce Pathway Scholarship and PTK member Karl Lowry was awarded a Coca-Cola's Leaders of Promise Scholarship. Dr. John Hogan was recognized with a Shirley B. Gordon Award of Distinction for college presidents who have demonstrated a strong level of support for PTK.

The Board recognized Skills USA students who received medals during the SkillsUSA State Championships this month. NPC won a total of seven medals in five different categories, taking gold for pin design and sweeping the advertising and design category with all three medals for the second consecutive year. The gold medal winners qualify to go to Louisville, KY in June to compete in the SkillsUSA National Championships.

The board welcomed new hires that included intramural coordinator Dillon Hargrove, and custodians Mary Bingham and Pamela King.

Hargrove served as assistant men’s basketball coach for Little Priest Tribal College in Nebraska and head baseball coach for Flippin High School. He is a graduate of Arkansas Tech University and played basketball for North Arkansas College. He will coordinate intramural activities for the campus and serve as assistant coach for both the men and women’s basketball teams. Hargrove said, “I am very excited to be here at National Park College. I look forward to working with the student athletes, as well as coach Jason Hudnell and coach Marvin Moody. Go nighthawks!”

Trustee Jim Hale provided an update on progress toward phase one of the campus master plan. The Board approved a $15 million campus expansion at a special called meeting in August, which includes construction of a new student commons facility, renovation of the Fisher Campus Center, and updates to technical program facilities. Hale said contractors are already working on campus. Construction has begun with expansion of the roadway behind the gym to allow for a redirection of traffic. Equipment operators are also working to excavate the west parking lot.

Dean of Business, Technical and Early College Programs, David Hughes and Vice President for Workforce and Strategic Initiatives, Kelli Albrecht provided a technical and skilled trades report. Hughes explained how technical programs have evolved over the past decade. Albrecht shared strategies to increase awareness of credit and non-credit programs and apprenticeships, particularly among high school students. She noted there are many well-paid earning opportunities for students in industries such as aerospace, heating and air, plumbing, and electrical among others.

Hogan concluded the meeting with the president’s report. Hogan congratulated all of the student award winners who were recognized during the meeting. “Our students are faring very well in these competitions and you got a firsthand look at that,” said Hogan.

He commended Albrecht on her leadership to bring investments of state and federal grant funding to the campus. Since 2014, NPC has received more than $2.3 million in grant funding for workforce related initiatives.

The Student Affairs team has been working to access the feasibility of adding on-campus housing. A request for proposals was release Monday to further explore interest and gather information about potential locations, timing and expense. In addition to housing, the team is working to identify potential food vendors for the new Student Commons building.