Blinn Board of Trustees approves resolution honoring Richard and Barbara Powell

Board authorizes next steps for district-wide master plan and new Brenham Campus student housing

Board authorizes next steps for district-wide master plan and new Brenham Campus student housing

October 16, 2019

The Blinn College District Board of Trustees made plans for future enrollment growth and thanked Richard and Barbara Powell for their generous support of the W.L. Moody, Jr. Library during a meeting held Tuesday, Oct. 15.

During the meeting, which was held in the Moody Library, the board approved a resolution in honor of Richard and Barbara Powell, who sponsored the library’s new W. Richard Powell and Barbara A. Powell Reading Rooms. The reading rooms, established this summer as part of the library’s first major renovation since 1981, have created a new space for students to participate in collaborative learning and group study opportunities.

“Tonight provided an opportunity for Blinn College to thank the Powell family for its friendship and all they have done for Blinn students,” said Charles Moser, Board Chair. “It was very rewarding to see the improvements that have taken place in the library and to thank the Powells for their support.”

The board also heard a Fall 2019 enrollment report from Vice Chancellor for Administration and Student Services Karen Buck, who announced that Blinn experienced a slight enrollment increase over last year.

This year, to better align with Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board data, Blinn’s Fall enrollment report counted students enrolled in the Fall 16-week and first 8-week sessions and did not count students enrolled in the Fall 12-week and second 8-week sessions. This resulted in an enrollment count of 19,202 students, up from 19,048 students enrolled in the same sessions last year. Contact hours, the number of hours students spend in instruction, also increased to 3,441,904, up from 3,415,056.

In Brenham, Blinn’s enrollment increased by 35 with 2,751 students. In Bryan, RELLIS Campus enrollment increased approximately 70% to 2,582 students while the Bryan Campus enrolled 9,375 (down from 10,109 in 2018). The Schulenburg Campus enrolled 128 students, a decrease of 34 students, and the Sealy Campus enrolled 126, down two students from the previous year.

Blinn saw a slight increase in high school dual credit enrollment with 1,728, up from 1,719 the previous year, and online enrollment increased from 2,063 to 2,280.

In other action, the board authorized Blinn to seek proposals for the development of a district-wide facilities master plan. The master plan will provide the College District with specific goals for repairs, renovations, expansion, demolition, and capital projects within all of the District’s facilities and properties. The plan also would provide a space utilization plan, comprehensive facilities assessment plan, land use plan, and will help to prioritize projects.

This will mark the first district-wide master plan in Blinn’s history and will cover Blinn’s entire 13-county service area, which includes Austin, Brazos, Burleson, Fayette, Grimes, Lee, Madison, Waller, and Washington counties, and parts of Milam, Montgomery, Robertson, and Walker counties. Blinn previously has developed three master plans for Brazos County and three facilities strategic plans for the Brenham Campus.

The board also authorized Blinn to seek requests for qualifications to develop a plan to finance, design, construct, and operate additional student housing on the Brenham Campus. With 1,784 beds, Blinn-Brenham has more student housing than any other Texas community college; however, the demand for on-campus housing continues to exceed the supply, and Blinn opened the Fall semester with a wait list of approximately 150 students.

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With an enrollment of 19,581 students, Blinn ranks among the nation’s leaders in transferring students to leading four-year universities and has received national recognition for affordable educational excellence.