Board of Trustees Approves Purchasing Agreement To Begin Updating HVAC System

[Garden City, KS] Nov. 10, 2020 - The Garden City Community College Board of Trustees approved a purchasing agreement with C&C Group to begin updating the remainder of the school's heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems during their regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday night inside the President's Conference Room.  

"It regulates all buildings," College President, Dr. Ryan Ruda said. "It essentially will control the boilers; the HVAC system and will also serve as a monitoring component." 

The purchase is for $68,160, which is funded by the 2020 CARES Act. It begins the process of moving the remainder of campus to the updated control and monitoring system that is already being used for Administration, SCSC, ACAD and Fouse buildings. It includes a Schneider Electric Automation Server and all labor to provide a basic HVAC graphics package for the Energy Center.  

"This allows us to remote access in and see what the temperature is in different areas," Derek Ramos, Dean of Facilities said. "If the system isn't working, it will send us an alarm. Right now, we are not getting alerts and have to come in during breaks to check the system." 

In addition to integrating all campus components, the upgrades will add two new 40 horsepower variable frequency drives, and two energy meters that will allow maintenance staff to monitor the load on the system in real time.  

"This will take care of our energy center where our chillers and boilers are," Ramos added.  

Based in both Kansas and Missouri, C&C Group specializes in emergency power generation, building automation, security, fire safety and network solutions. They've been in business since 1974, staying on the cutting edge of emerging technology and practices.  

"Really one of the key features of this system is its ability to help balance the temperature in buildings across campus," Dr. Ruda explained.  

The board then heard a presentation on the Liberal Arts and Science programs from English Instructor Samantha Sanger, who explained why this area of study is unique.  

"It serves several functions on our campus," Sanger stated. "There are several reasons why students choose LASC. It's a place where our undecided majors often go as a way to try on different programs and different disciplines." 

Liberal Arts and Science is the only general studies program offered at GCCC.  

"Some of our students come just because they need a degree," Sanger said.  

Later, during his President's report, Dr. Ruda commended the recent work of the GCCC Carpentry program, which recently spent a few days in Colby, KS building a playhouse for a little boy who had just gotten out of the hospital. It was all part of the 'Make A Wish' Foundation.  

"Ross Addison and his students did a tremendous job on this project," Dr. Ruda said. "This was a great cause." 

The President also highlighted a $501,000 grant that the college received through Finney County SPARK that will go towards refreshing the Network Switch, which in turn, will improve distance learning capabilities. As a side note, GCCC has received more than $3.4 million in grant money since March.  

Meantime Dr. Ruda introduced a special pilot program for the spring semester, which allows a group of students to register for classes online.  

"We have advisors that will work with those students and help register them for classes," he said. "This really streamlines the process and helps with the work that we do with students." 

Furthermore, in Dec., the college will roll out a new online admissions platform 

"I'm hoping that next month, we can do a demonstration," Dr. Ruda explained. "What this will do is allow students, who complete the application process, to immediately be enrolled in all of our services. So, they will immediately begin receiving text messages and email alerts." 

Finally, the Board voted to go into executive session where no action was taken.  

The next meeting of the Board of Trustees is set for Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 6 p.m. in the President's Conference room.


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