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ACC’s counselor elimination is disconcerting

August 14, 2012
The Alpena News

The ACC Board and Administration eliminated the last general fund Counselor position at ACC in May 2012. Many students, parents, and faculty members publicly commented at the May and June board meetings about the many benefits of this position and the tragic impact this elimination will have on our students, faculty, and staff in the career, academic, personal and transfer counseling process. The Board Chairperson directed the Administration to revisit the budget but the position has not been reinstated.

I contacted every community college in northern Michigan to determine if they were eliminating counseling services. The answer was a resounding "NO." In fact, many are adding counselors because all aspects of college are becoming more and more complicated.

This Counselor elimination is a detrimental decision. Our students pay tuition and are assessed fees for "student services." I ask "Why is this critical student service which positively impacts success and assists students with transfer to 4 year colleges being eliminated?" The only assistance remaining will be provided by a part time grant funded counselor who serves a small number of uniquely qualified students (10%). I ask "Who will help the majority of ACC students (90%)? This decision to eliminate the last trained, professional general fund Counselor (reduced from 3 in recent years to 0 with this elimination) at a college that serves as a transfer institution is unconscionable.

I urge you to let your voice be heard. Contact ACC President Dr. Olin Joynton, ACC Board Members: John Briggs, Chairperson, Florence Stibitz, Tom Townsend, Joe Gentry, Marc Ferguson, Lisa Hilberg, and Teresa Duncan or by coming to the ACC Board Meeting on Thursday, August 16th at 7PM , 4th Floor , NRC Building.

Bonnie L. Urlaub, MA, LPC

Retired ACC Counselor




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