Positive audit, fellowship with students mark trustee visit

Posted on October 6, 2017

Trustees joined students at “The Barn” Thursday evening.

The Erskine Board of Trustees visited the campus for scheduled meetings Thursday and Friday, Oct. 5-6, with the main gathering taking place Friday. “Board members walked out of this meeting encouraged on all fronts,” Board Chairman Sam James said.

A highlight of the trustees’ two days together was a time of worship and fellowship with students Thursday evening at “The Barn” on Chaplain Paul Patrick’s property just outside Due West.

“It was a neat time,” James said, recalling that he was a freshman when Patrick welcomed 140 students to the first “Student Fellowship at the Barn” back in 2003. “We hear so much about campus ministry at Erskine, and this was an opportunity for board members to experience it.”

James said Patrick “preached on the fact that this is our Father’s world that has been broken by sin, and encouraged [us] to be used by God to make the world better.”

Also on Thursday, James said, Provost of the College Dr. John Basie gave the board “an excellent presentation on faith and learning and what that means practically here at Erskine.”

Several reports were provided to the trustees, including Erskine President Dr. Robert Gustafson’s report on the Charter Institute at Erskine and a finalized audit report by Capin Crouse on the 2016-17 fiscal year, which showed an increase in Erskine’s net assets. The increase is owing in part to the market performance of the endowment and also shows the benefit of a decreased draw from the endowment.

“The auditor is pleased with the direction of our finances,” James said.

The board expressed thanks to Vice President for Finance and Operations Greg Haselden, who is leaving Erskine later this month. “We owe him a debt of gratitude,” the chairman said.

James noted that Erskine welcomed a “wonderful freshman class” this fall and that the admissions staff is “hard at work on recruiting the next class” and is focusing on students “who will love Erskine.”

Plans are under way for the inauguration of Erskine’s president in February. The next meeting of the Board of Trustees is set for Feb. 15.