File photo

The call was made to keep communications open between the college staff and the alumni association. pictured is the SJC campus chapel.

RENSSELAER — The St. Joseph’s College Alumni Association recently provided details from a conference call Aug. 12 between several members of the SJC Board of Trustees and the college’s staff.

The association said the call lasted about 90 minutes.

According to a post from the “Involved for Life” Facebook page, the call was made to “keep communications channels open between alumni and the leadership” of SJC.

The staff members present on the call reportedly included the vice president of career and technical education, Michelle Meadows, vice president for advancement, Bill Hogan and advisor Bill Carroll. The association said subjects covered on the call included “understanding next steps in potentially holding homecoming 2020 on campus” as well as other highlights.

More than $2 million has been given “in pledges and intentions” for the 128 Core partners campaign to secure investments for the college’s reopening. Those funds will benefit operations and help to maintain the campus.

Approximately $60,000 has reportedly been earmarked for repairs in the campus apartments. The association said they are viewed as the most viable location in which students may reside on campus if and when the college resumes operations.

That said, the doors and roofing have been in need of repairs.

The college’s first annual Purple Tie Dinner in 2018 raised funds to improve Schwieterman Hall. The association said new flooring has been installed in one room in Schwieterman Hall, and the flooring for the rest of the rooms has been purchased, though it is currently in storage.

The funds raised from this year’s Purple Tie Dinner were earmarked for operations. Hogan later said that, when all of the late donations have come in, the total raised for this year should be "just under $85,000."

Nursing program

The association said $20,000 has been approved for technology upgrades in the campus’ Core Building, and it called these updates “critical for revenue-generating programs,” including a planned certified nursing assistant (CNA) program originally announced in July.

Hogan has confirmed that the college has hired an instructor for this program. In the near future, the college will be buying supplies and work with the state to achieve certification for the program. The association said more details about the program will be shared “once state approval is completed.”

“The hope is to have the program certified and running by this fall,” the association stated. “Other certificate programs are being considered, but the CNA rollout is priority.”

Other highlights

The campus chapel will also have a cosmetic enhancement to the brickwork, funded by the St. Joseph’s College fellows, called tuck-pointing.

The association said the college’s former vice president of academics, Tom Ryan, has retired and that there is “no immediate plan” to replace the position.

“For budgetary reasons, the grant writer position has been eliminated,” the association stated.

According to the association, the college recently hosted a summit for farm executives which received positive feedback, and the college will now be “exploring potential programs aimed at the agriculture sector.”

The association said Carroll is working to explore potential partnerships between the college “several national and international universities and businesses.”

Hogan later praised the work of Chief Information Officer Michael Kohlman. He said Kohlman has been working hard to prepare the campuses' Banet Core Education Center for future events, classes, meetings or other social gatherings.

Though the staff members are working hard to hold more events on campus in the near future, Hogan said they have to pace themselves.

"We can't push too hard, because we've got to make sure that things that go on in the campus go well," Hogan said.