WCC Board of Trustees extends the contract of President Rose Bellanca, Ed.D.

Published on Oct 29, 2014 4:16pm

Washtenaw Community College’s academic achievement, State of Michigan evaluation against metrics measuring community college performance, a historic fund-raising initiative and steady student enrollment were plenty of reasons for the College’s Board of Trustees to vote unanimously yesterday to extend the contract of President Rose Bellanca, Ed.D. through 2017.

“Dr. Bellanca’s leadership has been remarkable in helping to move forward Washtenaw Community College in a strategic and highly effective manner,” said Board Chair Stephen J. Gill, Ph.D. “The College has never been as healthy and sound in so many vital areas – academically, financially
and reputation-wise. It is the Board’s position that we very much wanted to retain, reward and recognize the importance of her leadership to Washtenaw Community College.”

Her previous contract was extended in 2013 through the year 2016. The new contract extends through June 30, 2017, and provides a two percent annual salary increase. 

“It is the responsibility of the Board of Trustees to ensure our President, whoever it may be, receives compensation at a level competitive with other peer institutions,” said Chair Gill. “The Board
is pleased and impressed that President Bellanca continues to work diligently and tirelessly in conjunction with our Trustees to lead the College so effectively.”

The successes under Dr. Bellanca’s leadership include:

  • The College’s first, comprehensive strategic plan in 14 years;
  • The largest percentage increase in State of Michigan funding among the 28 community colleges
  • Benchmark data showing WCC students score higher than the national average in 10 important academic areas
  • A fundraising initiative raising $8 million in 18 months (eight times more than ever raised in the past)
  • A $2.9-million grant in 2012 from the U.S. Department of Labor
  • Steady enrollment that bucks the trend of most other community colleges showing enrollment declines (some in the double-digits)
  • A $4.7-million budget surplus for 2013-14, returned to the College’s general fund

Mary A. Kerr, president and CEO of the Ann Arbor Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, said, “This is certainly great news for Washtenaw County to retain strong and effective leadership in our community. I've had the pleasure of working closely with Dr. Bellanca over the past three years, particularly in retaining and extending our remarkable relationships with the United Association and Ironworker training programs at the college. The WCC Board of Trustees should be congratulated for its foresight in extending President Bellanca’s contract into 2017.”

Adam Zemke, vice chair of the Michigan House Appropriations Committee on Community Colleges, said, “As a legislator, looking across the community college landscape, I continue to be impressed with Washtenaw Community College under the leadership of Dr. Bellanca. She and her leadership team are forward-thinking and continue to move in the right direction in serving the needs of our community.”

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