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Raritan Valley Community College is firmly committed to a policy of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action and will implement the policy to assure that the benefits, services, activities, programs and employment opportunities offered at the institution are available to all persons regardless of race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, marital status, religion, affectional or sexual orientation, gender identification and expression, atypical hereditary cellular or blood trait, genetic information, liability for service in the Armed Forces of the United States, or disability, and in accordance with the state and Federal Laws: Title IX, Title VII, Civil Rights Act of 1964; Executive Order 11246, as amended; Title IX, Educational Amendments of 1972; section 503 and 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended; Veterans Assistance Act of 1972; as amended.
Raritan Valley Community College
RVCC began as Somerset County College and was officially established on April 5, 1966 by the appointment of a nine-member Board of Trustees. The College opened its doors to 229 students on September 12, 1968 at its temporary home: Green Brook High School. In July of 1968, the College found a permanent home with the purchase of a 240-acre site in Branchburg, NJ. The College's major redefining moment came when freeholders from Hunterdon and Somerset counties approved co-sponsorship of the College. Somerset County College was officially renamed “Raritan Valley Community College,” the first bi-county College in New Jersey, in July 1987. RVCC is now governed by a 15-member Board, enrolls over 8,000 credit students and another 8,000 non-credit continuing education and workforce development students, with an operating budget of over $50,000,000. For more information about RVCC, please see the College website at www.raritanval.edu
National Attention and Recognition
“Raritan Valley has earned its reputation for excellence among New Jersey’s community colleges, throughout the Northeast region and among peer institutions across the nation,” concluded the site team evaluating the College for the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. In March 2012, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education reaffirmed the College’s accreditation for 10 years and commended the College for the “quality of its self study report.” The 10-year accreditation has been granted in full, without need for any additional follow-up actions—such as progress reports or monitoring.
Raritan Valley Community College is rated among the Top Ten colleges and universities in the country, according to a book by authors Andrew Hacker and Claudia Dreifus. The book, Higher Education? (Times Books), highlights RVCC in a chapter on “Schools We Like—Our Top Ten List.” The book has been featured by Bloomberg Businessweek, New York Review of Books and Inside Higher Ed, as well as in national broadcast media.
RVCC students have been recognized for their service to the community and outstanding academic accomplishments. Students have received a number of prestigious national scholarships including an Undergraduate Transfer Scholarship from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and the Guistwhite Scholarship by the Phi Theta Kappa international honor society. An RVCC graduate was one of five students selected by Phi Theta Kappa to speak at the White House’s first-ever Community College Summit. Another RVCC graduate, Katie Meyler, founded the More Than Me Foundation to lift girls living in Liberia out of poverty through the power of education. In December 2012, More Than Me was awarded $1 million from the Chase Community Giving Contest, and Meyler was recognized as a leading educator and mentor by Chase.
For eight years in a row, the College’s Service Learning Program has received national recognition from the Corporation for National and Community Service and the U.S. Department of Higher Education.
RVCC faculty have been nationally recognized for their outstanding achievements—one most recently by the Chronicle of Higher Education readers as one of the top 100 Technology Innovators in the area of teaching.
RVCC was the only NJ College to receive a $4.6 million federal grant under the Department of Labor TAACCCT to develop workforce training programs utilizing an innovative partnership approach with potential employers. This success led to the award of $8 million in state funding for a new Workforce Training Center.
Raritan Valley Community College has brought national attention for its environmental sustainability by becoming the first community college in the nation to sign an environmental stewardship agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, earning the STARS Bronze Rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, and joining the EPA’s Green Power Partnership.
RVCC’s commitment to strengthening diversity on campus resulted in the College receiving the first Higher Education Excellence in Diversity award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine in 2012.
The College District
Somerset and Hunterdon, the sponsoring counties of Raritan Valley Community College, are an ideal place to live and work. The combined population is about a half million people. Within the towns, are urban, suburban, and rural communities that are steeped in history. One can find charming communities with many parks and recreation sites, river towns, historic sites, farmlands, excellent shopping areas, and substantial business and industrial locations. Health care and public schools are exceptionally strong. Residents are engaged in their communities and committed to a strong government and a fine quality of life. The area’s thriving business base is home to several international pharmaceutical corporations as well as many successful small businesses. This area of New Jersey is readily accessible to Princeton and Morristown, as well as New York City and Philadelphia, with all of their cultural centers. There are few if any other locations in the country that provide all the amenities available in the service area of Raritan Valley Community College.
Please visit the following web sites for more information on the sponsoring counties:
Somerset County Business Partnership
Hunterdon County Chamber of Commerce
Somerset County Government
Hunterdon County Government
Somerset County Schools
Hunterdon County Schools
RVCC has a distinguished reputation and the community has an expectation for continued high quality education. The College seeks a new president committed to learning the culture, programs, and people of both the College and the community, to living in the community, and to collaboratively building on and extending its strengths. The new president must be an advocate for both student access and success.
Clean, independent audits show that RVCC is financially well managed. The College budget of over $50 million is funded by 62% tuition, 11% state aid, and 25% from county government support. The leadership opportunity will be to match resources and expectations; seek improved funding from state, local, and federal sources; increase support from a successful foundation; and develop new and creative streams of funding.
Community and Business Relationships
Relationships with the community, the local governments, and the business communities are strong. There is increasing diversity in the counties, the business community has a growing workforce training need, and the general population expects a continued high quality education. The leadership opportunity is to ensure and support a diverse workplace; to increase workforce training while maintaining high quality transfer education; and to continue the trusting, supportive relationship with county and state government officials.
Faculty and Staff
The faculty, staff, and administration of RVCC are dedicated to the College and its students, are wellprepared, and have done exceptionally well in developing educational experiences and support programs that are of the highest quality and reputation. The leadership opportunity is to maintain morale, communication, mutual support and trust among all employees as the College grows, changes, and deals with fiscal challenges.
Students and Student Services
Students are at the heart of every decision the College makes. Students are highly engaged in student governmentand service learning is a valued and integral component of student life. Service learning provides opportunities for students to serve their communities as part of their classroom instruction. Annually, more than 1,000 RVCC students provide service to over 250 local community organizations within 85 different courses. Each year, students donate the economic equivalent of over $1 million in service to numerous organizations and their clients. Organizations such as Phi Theta Kappa have won national recognition. Student diversity is increasing steadily. The leadership opportunity is to maintain high quality instructional and support programs and increase student success, to ensure that appropriate programs are in place to serve a diverse population, and to expand marketing and outreach to increase the percentage of high school grads that choose RVCC.
Programs and Planning
Over 90 degree and certificate programs, as well as continuing education and workforce development programs, make up the robust academic and training offerings of RVCC. RVCC offers a wide array of transfer opportunities with over 70 different colleges and universities throughout New Jersey and across the country. Ivy League institutions and many other prestigious universities have accepted RVCC graduates into their rigorous academic programs. Transfer students do very well and those students who go directly into work are successful and eagerly embraced by employers. RVCC students enjoy the advantages of small classes, with the average class size at 19 students. RVCC students have transferred to such prestigious schools as Columbia University, Cornell University, University of California at Berkeley, New York University and Stanford University, in addition to numerous institutions within New Jersey. Most recently RVCC signed an articulation agreement with the University of Greenwich, and the College is preparing to sign an agreement with American University of Paris.
The College has a new 2013-2017 Strategic Plan to guide the College in growth and change for the next four years. The College has innovative programs and partnerships that have opened up new opportunities for students including two Academies and a selective admissions cohort-based Honors College. Honors College students are provided with the distinct advantage to transfer to selective colleges and universities; enjoy being in classes with other highly motivated students; and benefit from an enhanced academic curriculum, as well as special programs and a dedicated academic advisor. RVCC is establishing itself as a leader in workforce training, with career paths in automotive technology and advanced manufacturing, allied health, cyber security, entrepreneurship, cosmetology and environmental control technology. The leadership opportunity is to review educational offerings and academic planning to ensure their relevance; to maintain the strength of education and training as seen by students, transfer institutions, and employers; and to further build the internal cohesiveness and support for all the comprehensive programs at RVCC.
Facilities and Equipment
The beautiful 240 acre campus in Branchburg, NJ is well maintained and equipped. The College operates some off-campus sites including offerings in several high schools. The new Ray Bateman Center for Student Life and Leadership should be completed by the Spring 2014 semester; an extension of the science center and a new building to house workforce training will be completed within two years. The leadership opportunity is to continue to develop the resources necessary to maintain the growing campus and to ensure the faculty, staff, and students continue to have the state-of-the-art equipment necessary for a high quality education in today’s technology driven world.
Qualifications for The RVCC President
Professional & Personal Qualifications:
A candidate for the presidency of Raritan Valley Community College must have a distinguished record of accomplishment in higher education and will have displayed significant leadership skills. The successful candidate will be one whose education, experience, achievements, and personal characteristics most closely fit the culture and mission of RVCC. The candidate should possess academic credentials appropriate for leading a college—a doctorate or its equivalent preferred. Additionally, it is highly desirable that the candidate have strengths and experience in the following areas:
:: Commitment to academic excellence; teaching experience is desirable.
:: Commitment to student success and a student-centered collegial environment.
:: Commitment to supporting diversity and inclusion for faculty, staff and the student body.
:: Leadership and record of accomplishment at a senior level, specifically in planning, implementing and fulfilling strategic goals, and leading the College in the accreditation process.
:: Ability to establish goals within the Board’s priorities, to exercise discretionary decision making within Board policy, and to recommend to the Board new or revised policies and procedures for College operations.
:: Representation of the College to appropriate county, state and federal constituents, and the ability to exert influence on community college policy development.
:: National prominence, with a network of contacts in the academic, business and government sectors.
:: Strong management of fiscal, capital and human resources.
:: Commitment to the use of national standards in measuring and demonstrating the value of a community college education, particularly to external constituencies.
:: Understanding of the value of utilizing technology in an academic setting.
:: Excellence at fundraising.
:: Effective collaboration, team building and consensus building skills.
:: Ability to work well in a collegial and collective bargaining setting.
:: Advocacy of shared governance and collegiality among college constituents.
:: A leadership style that is honest, straightforward, ethical, and fair-minded.
:: Excellent communication skills, to both internal and external constituencies.
Nomination and Application Procedure
Applications should include an up-to-date resume and a 3 to 5 page letter specifically addressing the applicant’s background in relation to the opportunities, experiences, characteristics, and qualifications described in this Profile. The search committee will begin reviewing applications in early November 2013. To ensure consideration, all materials should be received by November 8, 2013.
Nominations and applications should be sent electronically in MS Word or Adobe PDF to firstname.lastname@example.org
This search is being assisted by:
Robert E. Parilla, Ph.D.
Raritan Valley Community College is firmly committed to a policy of equal opportunity and affirmative action.