Helena College by the Numbers
Helena College by the Numbers is brought to you by the Office of Institutional Research. The purpose of this periodic newsletter is to share a few selected data points along with some brief analysis to show how institutional data informs decision-making, measures progress on goals, and demonstrates student success. Comments, suggestions and/or questions are welcome and encouraged!

Core Theme Three:
Strengthen the Community

The College's Third objective for CT3 is to meet community needs through learning, volunteer and service collaborations.

The process of gathering a baseline inventory of individual collaborations with community partners at the program level began during the 2015-16 assessment plan cycle. With about a third of all programs, departments and committees providing data, the total number of collaborations reported was 157. Some programs, such as financial aid and nursing, reported more than 30 collaborations with community partners! As reporting improves, we know this number will increase significantly. At a minimum, most academic programs and many other areas across campus have advisory councils made up of multiple local, regional and statewide stakeholders that meet on a regular ongoing basis.  

The total number of service hours provided to the community by College employees and students in 2016. This number includes both formal and informal activity on behalf of the College by employees, as well as student internship hours reported by faculty. This information was gathered via community engagement surveys at the end of the 2016 spring and fall semesters with 55% and 36% response rates respectively. This data establishes a baseline for this indicator to set goals and evaluate future progress.

Community members and alumni attending both Show Helena College Some Love events. The Helena College Foundation's annual fundraising event hosted in February for the past two years. With our foundation now in place, efforts related to alumni and community outreach as well as fundraising for student scholarships are well underway.
The average number of customized trainings contracted by local employers each year through Helena College's Continuing Education program. This outcome far exceeds the target of six trainings/year established in 2012 and provides yet another example of the incredible growth of this program and demand for its for-credit and non-credit offerings. We are also in the process of better documenting the work of our academic program advisory councils to demonstrate how our for-credit offerings meet community needs.                                        
As of fall 2016, we have just begun to establish data collection processes and baselines for most of the indicators for this objective. Consequently without enough reportable data, we cannot show achievement of the minimum threshold for demonstrating mission fulfillment for this objective (Current score= 1; minimum threshold score= 2.4).

The College's fourth objective for CT3 is to develop and strengthen employee knowledge, skills and engagement.

The average percent of Helena College employees that have received professional development funding each year through the application process overseen by the Professional Development Committee, a bit below the target of 33%. During the past three years, 15% of staff and 34% of faculty have received funding for professional development on an annual basis. The professional development fund and application process has been in place now for almost a decade with a total of $241,044 awarded for training, specialized certifications, and attendance at professional conferences. This significant investment in our employees improves instruction and service to our students and the community. 

Average annual retention rate of Helena College employees over the past three years, which falls below the target of 90%, set in back in 2012 when the annual retention rate was approximately 88%. Improving economic conditions and lagging Montana University System compensation rates account for much the College's recent struggles in this area, though constant attention to recruitment practices, employee evaluation and maintaining a positive working environment is also necessary to attract and retain good employees.

The percentage of employees indicating overall satisfaction with their employment at Helena College according to the Noel-Levitz College Employee Satisfaction Survey conducted in the spring semester of 2015, which established a baseline for measuring progress on future surveys. The survey response rate was 38.5% with a significant majority indicating they were "satisfied" or "somewhat satisfied" with their employment at the College. A committee representing the various employee constituencies on campus analyzed the survey results and submitted a list of 10 recommendations from improving employee satisfaction to campus leadership.                                              
As of fall 2016, Helena College did not achieve the minimum threshold for demonstrating mission fulfillment for this objective. Two of the indicators fell below their targets. The third indicator now has a baseline in place to evaluate future progress. (Current score= 1; minimum threshold score= 1.8)