Las Vegas Sun

October 30, 2014

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LOOKING IN ON: HIGHER EDUCATION

RENO -In a strange move Friday, UNLV President David Ashley and UNR President Milton Glick asked for less money.

Executive Vice Chancellor Dan Klaich had requested that regents increase the limit the presidents could spend buying tables at charity events each year from $30,000 to $100,000. But the presidents said $100,000 was too much, and they'd be perfectly happy with a $50,000 cap.

The $30,000 limit is too low, Ashley said, but that having a limit is good because it forces the university to think carefully about what events officials attend.

Regent Steve Sisolak - half joking, half serious - said the limit is important because it gives presidents an easy out - "I'd really like to attend your event, but I've already used up my budget for the year."

Regent Chairman Michael Wixom said he was surprised to see presidents reducing a request.

The presidents also had requested regents lift a ban on purchasing tables at each other's events to show they were part of a unified system. Nevada State College President Fred Maryanski suggested it would be better if each university or college would set aside tables at their events for the other institutions.

Regents did not vote on the request, saying they wanted to make sure board members couldn't pressure presidents to buy tables at their charity events. They also wanted more information about past table purchases and who attended.

Chancellor Jim Rogers said he thought attending community events was a major part of a president's job.

The issue will come up at the regents' October meeting in Las Vegas.

Regents were glad to hear that the Union Apprenticeship program at the College of Southern Nevada was back on track and likely to be better than ever . That word came during a report from interim President Michael Richards on Thursday.

Everyone wanted to make sure that those involved in patching up the rocky relationship got credit, and Sisolak was quick to highlight the woman behind the scenes who makes everything run smoothly in the Nevada System of Higher Education - Jo Ann Prevetti.

Prevetti is Rogers' personal secretary and takes care of his business for Sunbelt Communications and higher education. She coordinated several meetings to get the program back on track, and made sure that everyone stayed on the same page.

"She made sure there were no more misunderstandings," Sisolak said.

Clark County School Board member Larry Mason has been appointed interim director of diversity and inclusion at the College of Southern Nevada.

The position has been vacant since Larry Mosley left to work with Gov. Jim Gibbons several months ago.

The previous director, Debra Lopez, has filed complaints with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Nevada Equal Rights Commission, claiming she was fired for reporting discrimination and hostile workplace violations.

Mason has been on loan from CSN to the chancellor's office to work on improving relations between the School District and higher education and working on partnerships. Programs have been developed to offer remedial work for college in high school, to better match high school curriculum to college expectations and to help students make the transition from high school to college.

Mason said diversity issues, particularly improving the recruitment and retention of minority students, is one of his passion s , and he is excited to be able to tackle that at CSN.

"I really think that I can bring some solutions to the table," Mason said.

Before working in the chancellor's office, Mason was dean of student affairs and community outreach at the community college.

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