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Comprehensive Standards 3.7.3

The institution provides evidence of ongoing professional development of faculty as teachers, scholars, and practitioners. (Faculty)



Cape Fear Community College (CFCC) is in compliance with this comprehensive standard. The college spent over $120,000 for faculty travel to seminars, symposia and other professional development activities in the 2004-2005 academic year. Specific activities in the Vocational Technical and the Arts and Science Divisions are detailed. Under the supervision of the College’s Professional Development Committee, the College also offers a number of on-campus opportunities for all faculty including many training opportunities in the College’s Technical Training Center, an annual in-service training event open to all employees, the opportunity to take one class including textbook(s) at no charge, and access to online training and developmental resources. Professional development is also considered in the annual performance evaluation process, and that process affords faculty members and their supervisors an opportunity to plan for next year’s professional development needs. The College is also working to include an increased awareness of global issues as part of faculty and staff professional development.


Cape Fear Community College’s policy on faculty professional development is specified in the CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook as follows:

“The rapid rate of change makes it essential for all faculty and staff members to devote part of their time to staying current in their field of expertise. Employees are expected to develop and maintain the administrative skills, such as computer literacy, necessary for successful job performance. Faculty members are expected to further their knowledge within their specialty and continuously to refine their instructional skills.”

The College offers many opportunities to help employees in their growth and development. These include conferences, seminars, visits to industry and the opportunity to take classes at little or no cost. The College also provides facilities such as the Library/Learning Resource Center’s Technical Training Center which offers faculty and staff training in computer and other skills.

[For example, the Technical Training Center offered 131 classes in Excel, PowerPoint, Publisher, Access, GroupWise, Smart Board, Campus Cruiser, Web Design, Dreamweaver/Contribute and Blackboard in 2004-2005 with 538 faculty and staff members attending. Because CFCC converted to Datatel Colleague, a new software system, in 2005, over 200 faculty members were also given training in the basics of Colleague as well as how to use the system to advise and register students].

The College expects employees to use these and other resources to ensure currency and continued growth in their chosen field. It is the responsibility of each employee to provide to his or her supervisors and to the Personnel Office records of growth and development activities such as transcripts and certificates of attendance or completion. Professional growth and development will be considered in faculty and staff annual performance evaluations.” (Professional Growth and Development Policy Statement)

In 2004-05, CFCC spent $128,000 for professional development of curriculum faculty, a sum typical of previous years' expenditures. Clearly, requirements for accountability of the expenditure of such an amount mandate that the institution have a process for approval of such expenditures. In CFCC's case, the process also includes the flexibility to consider the diverse range of program and individual faculty needs within the institution as appropriate supervisory personnel consider approving faculty requests. Individual faculty members, or in some cases their supervisors, initiate the professional development process each time a request is made for advance approval to attend some professional development event. In that process, both the faculty member and supervisory personnel consider the mutual needs and interests of the respective department/division/College-at-large and the individual faculty member. The supervisor also considers the availability of funds before approving or denying the request and forwarding the request on for additional approvals. Obviously, many professional development requests for professional development of faculty were approved in 2004-2005. Lists of 2004-2005 professional development activities for Vocational Technical faculty and for Arts and Science faculty are attached (Professional Development Vocational Technical) (Professional Development College Transfer).

In addition, faculty engage independently in many professional development activities, other than workshops, regional and national meetings and seminars that are not reflected in professional development expenditures of the College. Many faculty pursue advanced degrees, with or without support from the institution. Most participate in departmental meetings where good practices or other topics are frequently discussed that likewise contribute to their professional development. These departmental meetings and other professional development activities occurring within the College are open to all faculty members.

The institution's Professional Development Committee (Professional Development Committee) annually organizes a wide variety of in-house professional development opportunities open to all faculty and staff. Before the start of each academic year, the Professional Development Committee schedules a day of in-service training for faculty and staff. Topics vary from the president’s welcome to benefits discussions to a number of professional development activities. The agenda for the fall 2005 in-service training is attached (In-Service Program).

State policy further exempts full-time community college employees, including faculty, from tuition for one community college course per semester. The policy is reflected in the CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook (College Courses). While it does not restrict such courses to include only those courses that might serve as professional development activities for faculty, some courses might indeed be appropriate professional development activities for selected faculty members. Also as mentioned in the CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook, CFCC provides required textbooks at no cost to employees enrolled in tuition-free classes. In 2004-05, CFCC provided $6,949.06 worth of textbooks to employees enrolled in these classes (Textbooks).

The North Carolina Legislature provides a special appropriation of funds, called TIER A, to each college in the North Carolina Community College System to be used for professional development activities. As specified in the CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook, (TIER A Funds) these funds are also administered by the Professional Development Committee. The institution receives an annual "TIER A" allocation ($11,421 in 2004-05 and $11,346 for 2005-06) to ensure a minimum of professional development for faculty and staff. This allocation cannot be spent for any purpose other than professional development. Over the last four years, not less than 60 percent of this allocation has been spent on professional development of faculty with the remainder going to staff development.

The CFCC professional development program provides flexibility in tailoring professional development opportunities to fit the mutual and ever-changing needs and interests of the College and individual faculty members. Professional growth and development is considered in faculty and staff annual performance evaluations as shown on the Performance Appraisal form (Performance Appraisal Form). Not only is professional development a rated criterion, but also the second page of the form provides space for the supervisor and the faculty member to identify development needs for the next academic year.

CFCC faculty members are also entitled to educational leave to improve instructional competence as approved by the president and the board of trustees. The terms and conditions for educational leave are spelled out in the CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook (Educational Leave). The most recent example of the board of trustees approving an educational leave request for an employee is found in the minutes of their May 26, 2005 meeting (Board Minutes pg 7).

Other examples of professional development activities available to all CFCC faculty members include the North Carolina Network for Excellence in Teaching (NC-NET). NC-NET offers community college faculty in North Carolina a collaborative, statewide professional development system that is committed to sharing best practices, leveraging resources, and avoiding duplication. NC-NET resources are available online thereby avoiding the travel costs and scheduling problems usually associated with professional development (NC-NET).

Another professional development example is CFCC’s partnership with World View. World View was established at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill in 1998 to help K-12 and college educators anticipate and respond to the challenges of this smaller, more interconnected world. CFCC is one of eleven community college World View partners. As such, CFCC faculty are invited to participate in seminars and symposia on global issues. CFCC also created a Global Education Committee whose charge is to include in professional development an increased awareness of global issues by CFCC faculty, staff, students and residents of New Hanover and Pender counties (Global Education Committee).



Source Location

Professional Growth
and Development Policy Statement
CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook
Section 5.10.1


Professional Development Vocational Technical


Professional Development College Transfer


Professional Development Committee


In-Service Program,
August 19, 2005
College Courses,
CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook
Section 5.10.2
CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook
Section 5.10.5
TIER A Funds,
CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook
Section 5.10.3
Performance Appraisal Form,
For Exempt Employees - Faculty
Educational Leave,
CFCC Faculty and Staff Handbook
Section 5.9.6
Board Minutes,
CFCC Board of Trustees
May 26, 2005 (pg 7)
NC-NET Website
Global Education Committee globaleducationcomm.pdf



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