Scott Summers Running for College Board

A press release from Scott Summers:


Harvard attorney Scott Summers has declared his candidacy for a seat on the McHenry County College Board of Trustees. The election will be held on April 7, 2015.

If chosen, Summers will commence a second term.

A trustee at the college between 2005 and 2009, he also served briefly in 2007 as board chair.

Scott Summers while he served on the McHenry County College Board.

Scott Summers while he served on the McHenry County College Board.

“People throughout the county have encouraged me to run again,” Scott says.

“They tell me that my past experience, along with my perspectives about the future of the college, will be especially valuable for students and taxpayers alike.”

As an MCC board member, Summers was known for his incisive commentary and expansive thinking.

But he also was at the center of controversy. In 2007, Scott and then-trustee Donna Kurtz helped lead community opposition to the construction of a minor league baseball stadium on the campus.

“It was a tumultuous time,” he recalls. “Yet we succeeded in stopping the project.

“I believe that I helped head off what would have been a multi-million dollar mistake.”

Summers will, if elected, once again bring an impressive skill set to the position.

A lawyer in private practice, he is the author of two books published by the American Bar Association. He also holds a master’s degree in business administration from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

By way of gubernatorial appointment and state senate confirmation, Summers has served since 2013 as the public guardian and public administrator of McHenry County.

Scott believes that MCC must make fundamental changes in the ways its courses are provided.

“In order to offer quality at reasonable prices, the college must turn its delivery process inside out,” he asserts.

“Rather than continue to concentrate functions on the Crystal Lake campus, the college now must travel to its students, both physically and online.”

It is for this reason that Summers opposes the grandiose bricks-and-mortar plans now being contemplated by the college.

“A megacampus is the wrong call,” he says emphatically.

“For MCC, decentralization isn’t an option. It’s an imperative.”

Scott and his wife reside on a small farm in rural Harvard. They have two sons.

Contact information:  Scott Summers and Summers for Trustee Campaign Committee

Website (pending)



Scott Summers Running for College Board — 10 Comments

  1. With all of the empty stores and buildings in McHenry County MCC should decentralize and have more local campuses.

    The old walmart in McHenry would be a perfect hub for McHenry students.

    They could either make this a hub for nursing programs who partner with Centegra which is also located in McHenry or teach the gen eds in McHenry, Harvard, Marengo, etc to bring the classes to where the students are.

    This would alleviate building more parking lots etc.

  2. Are you nutz, Karma?

    You seem to be suggesting that someone there has some modicum of common sense.

  3. There is a really stupid impediment to satellite campuses.

    If I understood the explanation correctly, such facilities have to provide most of the same student services that are available on the main campus.

    That is required by the accrediting agency, as I remember the story.

  4. Cal, is that also true for non-credit courses?

    MCC seems to offer many, many of those.

  5. Maybe Mr. Summers or Chris Jenner can find out more about the the stupid impediment such as, is it a State or Federal law, what’s the statute, etc.

    Satellite campuses would be key especially for lower income folks whom don’t have high speed internet access.

  6. Maybe the President of the College should supply specific facts about such regulatory impediments, and offer her rationalizations about why this strategy hasn’t been explored as an alternative to better serve the people of McHenry County?

  7. Susan: She is more interested in lobbying with Thanksgiving Day cards.

  8. For anything other than hands-on lab work, I think taking classes online is the wave of the future.

    However, using remote locations may make sense in some cases. As is always the case for me, it turns on the facts of the case.

    Classrooms at the main campus are used, on average, less than half of each school day, so remote locations face a high hurdle, economically. Their use requires balancing marginal cost and student convenience.

    First, what is the marginal cost of using the remote location versus the marginal cost of using the main campus? If space is available on campus at a lower cost than remote space, that would argue against a remote location.

    Second, what is the benefit to students of the remote location? Mainly it is time saved commuting. If we are talking Crystal Lake, that’s pretty close to the main campus — not much time to be saved. If we’re talking Harvard, that could be a big enough time savings to make sense. It’s a question of cost versus benefit.

    Let’s look at an example to make clear how to analyze the situation.

    Suppose there are 100 students at the remote location, each taking one class per semester and that they each save two hours roundtrip each per class session. Then a remote location would save 19,200 hours per per year.

    If the facility’s marginal cost is $100,000, the cost per hour saved is $5.21. That might be worth the expenditure of public funds.

    If the facility’s marginal cost is $1 million, the cost per hour saved is $52.08. I would hesitate to spend the taxpayers’ money on a remote location in this case.

    So, is a remote location a good idea or not? I can’t tell without looking at the numbers.

    But if we have the numbers, we can make figure it out objectively. It stops being a factless argument between “Won’t someone please think of the children!” and “You’re wasting tax dollars!”

  9. When he served on the board before he commented that ‘it was a tumultuous time’.

    He didn’t mention that he quit!

    While agree with some of his points as I’m sure everyone running is also considering-if he can’t stand to have opposition, disagreements etc, that says he can’t be persuasive (for a lawyer you’d think he’d have that down pat) but if he can’t either be persuasive or handle it when the going gets tough-MCC can do better.

    His lack of commitment or ability to work with others wouldn’t be good for MCC because these too, are tumultuous times at the college with this administration.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *