News & Notes 
Information for South Carolina's Independent Colleges & Universities  
Vol. 8 Issue 1: Jan 2015

In This Issue
2015 Off to a Fast Start
NGU President to Retire
2015 Biennial Retreat
CIC Challenge Update
Title IX Coordinators
Also in the news
Member College News
SCICU Business Partners
Quick Links...

Events 2015 

January 26 

Career Connections

Columbia Metropolitan Cntr

8am - 5pm   


January 28 

Finance Committee Mtg

SCICU, 10 - 11am 


February 9

Executive Committee Mtg

SCICU, 11am - 12pm 


February 12 

Research Symposium  

Milliken Center, Spartanburg

8:30am - 4:30pm


February 20 

IR Directors Meeting

CIU, 11am - 2pm 


March 5-6 (REGISTER)

Trustees Biennial Retreat

Westin Poinsett, Greenville


March 24 

Public Policy Meeting

SCICU, 10- 11am 


April 14 

Excellence in Teaching Dinner

Columbia Metropolitan Cntr.

6pm - 9pm 


April 15  

State House Day  

Trinity Episcopal/State House 8am - 1pm 


April 27 

Teacher Recruitment Fair

Presbyterian College, Clinton 


June 15-19 

Campus Tour - Summer 2015  


August 6

Development Committee 

SCICU, 10:30 - 11:30am 


To view more info about these meetings and events,   click here.  

Our Colleges:
Business Partners:


ABM Building Services, LLC

Affinity LTC, LLC


American Student Assistance


Blackboard, Inc. 

CapinCrouse LLP  

Casagrande Consulting, LLC

Club Colors

Coleman Lew & Associates 

CSI Leasing, Inc. 

Elliott Davis, PLLC 

e-Procurement Services, LLC

First American Education Finance (FAEF)
Genworth Financial 

Gillis Specialty Advertising
Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd 
HRP Associates    

McMillan Pazdan Smith Architecture 

Myers McRae Exec. Search

Pollock Company

Professional Insurance & Investment Associates 



School Dude



The Payments Company

The Walker Company 

Total Comfort Solutions

UnitedHealthcare Student Solutions

Verizon Wireless 

Vulcan Materials

Walsh Consulting Group, LLC
Wyche Law Firm


Click here to view a full listing of SCICU Business partners...
Private College Purchasing Coalition:
The Coalition for College Cost Savings is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping SCICU members reduce and contain costs through collaboration.

Join Our Mailing List

As students return to campus from the holidays and campus activities steadily increase, the SCICU calendar kicks into high gear with a number of special events and a full legislative agenda.


On January 13, the South Carolina General Assembly begins the 2015 session at noon. A few hours later Earl Mayo, executive director of the Higher Education Tuition Grants Commission, meets with the House Ways and Means Committee's Higher Education Subcommittee to request a $1.25 million increase in student aid for the purpose of increasing the maximum Tuition Grant award from $3,000 to $3,100.


SCICU's #1 Legislative Priority is to support the Commission's request for additional funding as well as advocate for full funding of the Palmetto Fellows, LIFE, and HOPE scholarship programs.


Career Connections 2015 takes place on January 26 at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center. More than 300 seniors from SCICU member colleges and universities are expected to interview with over 40 employers for that all-important, post-graduation job.


In early February, Mike LeFever and several college and university presidents will visit with members of South Carolina's Congressional delegation to discuss student aid funding, regulations, and higher education policy with particular emphasis on the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act.


On February 12, more than 30 students will present the results of their year-long independent research at a symposium at the Roger Milliken Innovation Center in Spartanburg.  


SCICU Trustees get into the act on March 5 and 6 at the SCICU Biennial Retreat at the Westin Poinsett Hotel in Greenville. See related article for more information.


Other keys dates include:

April 13-18: Independent College and University Week

April 14: Excellence in Teaching Awards Dinner

April 15: SCICU Students Day at the State House  


Keep your eye on our Events Page to stay informed this coming year. 

NGU President to Retire After 23 Years of Leadership


The North Greenville University Board of Trustees recently announced that University President, Dr. James B. Epting, would be taking sabbatical leave for the spring semester of 2015, with plans to retire at the end of the school's fiscal year in May.  


"We are deeply grateful to Dr. Epting for his 23 years of service and thankful for the miracles God has performed at the University under his leadership," said Beverly Hawkins, Chair of the University's Board of Trustees.  


Epting's tenure began in 1991 when he was named the seventh president of North Greenville College, then a two-year institution. Enrollment was at an all-time low of 329 students at the time and the school's imminent closure was looming. Since Epting took office, the school has prospered, celebrating its 18th consecutive record enrollment this past fall with an enrollment of 2,632 undergraduate, graduate, and online students. 


Under Epting's leadership, the college began offering four-year degrees in 1994, and attained University status in 2005; its graduate programs began at the T. Walter Brashier Graduate School in 2006, and it added a doctoral degree in 2012. The school currently offers over 40 undergraduate, graduate and online degree programs. An additional satellite location was opened in 2014 at the Tim Brashier Center in Greenville. This location houses the school's MBA program.


The NGU Board has named Dr. Randall J. Pannell, Chief Academic Officer, as spokesperson during this interim time.


The Board is in the process of appointing an interim president and also a search committee to begin a national search for the school's eighth president in its storied 123-year history. 

2015 SCICU Biennial Retreat


Every two years, the SCICU Board of Trustees meet in an extended session to focus on higher education issues of significant importance to independent colleges and universities. The 2015 retreat will take place March 5 and 6 at the Westin Poinsett Hotel in Greenville.


The Retreat will begin with a reception and dinner the evening of March 5. Dr. Georgia Nugent will give the after dinner address. A Senior Fellow at the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC), Dr. Nugent leads the Council on Independent Colleges' Securing America's Future: The Power of Liberal Arts Education campaign. Dr. Nugent served as the president of Kenyon College from 2003-2013. A member of the first class of women to graduate from Princeton, she later became the first alumna appointed to Princeton's faculty and served in several administrative roles at Princeton University, including assistant to the president.


Following an early morning business meeting on March 6, Dr. David Warren, president of the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, will spotlight the critical higher education issues before Congress this session.  


Dr. Jolley Bruce Christman, chair of the Jolley Foundation, will lead a session on higher education access and success. The program will feature the highly successful Bridges to a Brighter Future and SCICU's latest scholarship program that provides scholarships to Bridges graduates to any SCICU member college or university.  


SCICU college and university presidents attending the retreat will participate in three interactive panel discussions. Spartanburg Methodist College President Dr. Colleen Perry Keith will moderate panel discussions with her colleagues on College Costs and Affordability, Retention and Completion, and Title IX and Other Regulatory Challenges.


At Friday's farewell luncheon, college presidents will host trustees and guests for table-top discussions during the meal.  


SCICU Trustees are encouraged to Register for the Biennial Retreat on our website.


At the half-way point of the SCICU/CIC Challenge Grant, SCICU has received $14,150 toward the goal to raise $35,000 in new funds for information technology scholarships. We thank the many donors who have contributed thus far.


In 2014, SCICU won a $25,000 grant from the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) that must be matched with $35,000 in new dollars to secure the grant. The $60,000 will be used to fund forty $1,500 SCICU IT-oLogy Scholarships over the next two years to students studying in STEM-related majors (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) at the twenty SCICU member colleges.


The deadline for SCICU to raise the additional $20,850 needed to secure the $25,000 matching funds is June 30, 2015. Please be reminded that to count toward the challenge grant the gift must be a new or increased gift. If you made a gift to SCICU in 2014, only the amount in excess of your previous year's donation will count towards the challenge grant. Gifts from new donors or those who have not given recently will be applied to the challenge grant dollar for dollar.  


Please help us raise the additional challenge dollars by considering a new or increased gift to SCICU today. All checks should be made payable to SCICU and mailed to SCICU Challenge Grant, PO Box 12007, Columbia, SC, 29211.  


You may also donate online by clicking MAKE A GIFT and by following the directions. Under the drop down menu for Contribution Preference, select "Unrestricted." In the Notes section, type "CIC Challenge Grant" in order that your gift will be applied to the challenge.


For further information, please contact Eddie Shannon at SCICU at 803-799-7122.
Title IX Coordinators: Meet to Discuss Common Issues, Explore Common Solutions  


Twenty-three representatives from 14 SCICU member colleges and universities met on December 12 on the campus of Columbia College to discuss common issues relevant to Title IX compliance. Recent changes to Title IX and the Violence Against Women Act require colleges to act more aggressively in identifying, preventing, and addressing sexual misconduct on their campuses.


During the needs assessment period, the necessity for training and the related costs received #1 priority. Different levels of training for various key personnel include training for investigators, coordinators, hearing officers and hearing panel members, and students, faculty, staff and trustees. The cost of the training and the cost of traveling and accommodations are considerable.  


Immediate training needs include program design for Title IX coordinators and basic and advance training for investigators. Staff turn-over, conflicts of interest among limited staff, and expanding regulations and legal requirements require constant training and retraining. In addition, campuses need assistance with documentation, design and implementation of annual climate surveys, legal rights and responsibilities, alternative funding possibilities, defining consent, handling anonymous complaints, and integrating compliance and reporting systems with SACS standard 4.1.


In an effort to address the members' collective needs in a manner that will produce the best results at the lowest possible cost, the group agreed to pursue bringing high quality training to the South Carolina independent colleges and universities in the areas of Title IX legal responsibilities, program and policy formation, and basic and advance training for investigators. Sharing the cost of instructors and facilities in-state is thought to be more cost effective than sending staff to multi-day training sessions that would require out-of-state travel. 


Another area for collaboration is the cost of membership in national professional organizations. Memberships bring with them access to high quality resources and discounted training, but they are expensive for individual schools. The group will explore discounts available to multiple subscribers at some of the most common and most trusted program providers. 

Also in the news...  

  • The 2014 SCICU Annual Report is a celebration of the organization's accomplishments and the generous donors, patrons, and partners that made it all possible. The most recent report was published and distributed in mid-December. Additional print copies are available from the SCICU office upon request. An electronic copy can be downloaded here from our website. 


  • Microsoft, through its Corporate Citizenship program, donated four copies of its Office Professional Plus 2013 to the SCICU office. Valued at over $3,200, the software donation was facilitated by the non-profit reseller TechSoup. Many thanks to Microsoft, TechSoup, and to our Business Partner ScholarBuys, who introduced us to the program.
  • Rep. James Merrill (Charleston) is the new chair of the Higher Education and Technical Colleges Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee. He takes over from Rep. Chip Limehouse (Charleston) who chaired the subcommittee for more than 10 years. Other subcommittee members are Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter (Orangeburg), Rep. Garry Smith (Simpsonville), and Phillip Lowe (Florence). Only Rep. Smith was on last year's subcommittee. The Higher Education Subcommittee is the first rung on the legislative appropriations ladder and its recommendations often set the tone for final budget allocations.
Member College News

SCICU posts news and accomplishments of our member institutions on the
Member College News section of our website. Here is a selection of news recently featured:

Share your news with the SC independent college community! Place Communications Coordinator Stephenie Helland ( on your media relations email list. Thank you!

SCICU Business Partners

We are pleased to announce the following companies have joined us as business partners:    

Alumni Sync  

Verizon Wireless


The following companies have renewed their partnerships: 


Capin Crouse, LLP 

First American Education Finance

Wyche, Attorneys at Law 


 A complete listing of all the Business Partners may be found in the left margin of News & Notes or on our website.
News & Notes is published by the South Carolina Independent Colleges and Universities, Inc. Please send all comments or questions to SCICU President & CEO Mike LeFever at or 803-799-7122. Mailing address: P.O. Box 12007, Columbia, SC 29211