SMC Board of Trustees meets at, tours Niles campus

Published 10:31 am Monday, November 15, 2021

NILES — One local community college board got a change of scenery last week.

The Southwestern Michigan College Board of Trustees met Nov. 10 at the Niles campus for its regular meeting. Typically, the board meets at its Dowagiac campus.

During the meeting, Daryl Harris, of Mishawaka, and Jennifer Wolf, of Niles, were recognized for five years of service to the college.

Trustees received the annual audit and financial statements from Plante Moran.

“This audit is clean, and demonstrates that the college has financially weathered the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Board Chair Tom Jerdon. “This is thanks to conservative budgeting and various federal relief funds.”

In other action, the board approved the 2023 Five Year Capital Outlay Master Plan and the Lyons Building Renovation Project Request, both of which are filed with the State of Michigan. Trustees acknowledged $5,575 given to the Southwestern Michigan College Foundation, and approved $2,115 given directly to the college.

The board met in closed session for President Dr. Joe Odenwald’s annual performance review.

“It was a productive discussion, as Dr. Joe has led admirably the past two years,” Jerdon said. “He’s obviously committed to moving the needle for the college and himself with each passing year.”

Following the meeting, members were able to get a glimpse of the many investments made to the Niles Area Campus, including the extensive chemistry lab renovation which was completed this past summer.