Annual Internal Audit Plan for 2020-2021


Internal Audit conducts risk-based assurance engagements and investigations. The risk-based assurance engagement is an objective examination of evidence to provide an independent assessment of governance, risk management, programmatic effectiveness and the control systems within the institution. Additionally, as may be necessary by events occurring during any fiscal year, investigations are performed based upon requests received from key Management personnel and as may be necessary in response to a complaint or concern raised via the Fraud Hotline.

In June 2020, the Dallas County Community College District was approved to move forward as a single accredited institution to be known as Dallas College. As a result, a significant reorganization of the institution occurred. ​This audit plan takes into consideration the new organizational structure of Dallas College. ​

Core Audit Plan

Internal Audit has identified certain critical areas for inclusion in the core audit plan to ensure that adequate coverage is provided over a reasonable time. The critical areas for core audit plan inclusion are:

  • Provost - Provide high quality, job-relevant instruction and training for students and support faculty to deliver it
  • Student Success - Support students to succeed through providing data-informed programs throughout the student lifecycle
  • Workforce and Advancement - Serve as primary liaison and oversee partnerships with employers, donors and alumni
  • Operations - Ensure efficient operations for Dallas College, across schools and campuses
  • Campus - Foster a supportive campus culture and serve as the primary liaison with community stakeholders

Risk Assessment Process

Internal Audit utilized a survey process to solicit feedback from the Board of Trustees, Senior Management and the Internal Audit Team to develop this annual audit plan. The survey collected information based on nine risk areas. The nine risk areas factored into the allocation of resources assigned to the compliance and programmatic audits by summarizing the scores by critical area based on the new Dallas College organizational structure being implemented.

Results of the Risk Assessment Survey

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Risk Area
Critical Area
Academic Affairs
External Relations Risk Areas
Human Resources
Information Technology
Student Affairs
Student Success
Board Governance


To transform lives and communities through higher education. 

Overall Purposes:

  • To ensure Dallas County is vibrant, growing and economically viable for current and future generations.
  • ​​​To provide a teaching and learning environment that exceeds learner expectations and meets the needs of our community and employers.

The Board of Trustees’ Strategic Priorities continue to guide the work of the college in its mission to transform lives and communities through higher education and achieving 60x30TX.

The Board is committed to an annual assessment of progress and impact for the Strategic Priorities using appropriate metrics.

Impact Income Disparity Throughout Our Community

  • Careers: Help prospective and current students understand the value and necessity of Career Connected Learning leading to living wages and sustainable careers.
  • Underserved: In partnership with other providers, target underserved communities and individuals to support skills development for youth and adults.
  • Scholarships: Provide scholarship support for skills development in high demand jobs leading to careers.
  • Life Issues: Increase support for student life issues that impact completion such as housing, food, health care, mental health, childcare, emergency aid and transportation.
  • Pipeline: Strengthen the education pipeline through engagement with parents and students and through partnerships with school districts, community organizations, universities and employers.

Streamline and Support Navigation to and Through Our College and Beyond

  • Technology and Training: Remove barriers to educational goals completion through targeted training for advisors and student care coordinators, technology support for Guided Pathways (Navigate), centralized course scheduling (master scheduling process) and immediate availability of learning materials (IncludED).​
  • Supportive Environment: Provide a welcoming, accessible and responsive environment at all levels of our organization that demonstrates sensitivity and respect for individual needs, giving timely accurate and consistent information and resolving issues as needed.
  • Career Resources: Enhance availability of career resources to increase student employment in high-value jobs.
  • Advanced Degrees: Pilot new models for transfer to baccalaureate programs including employer-paid tuition arrangements, guaranteed admissions, co-enrollment and fast-tracked core completion.
  • Student Experience Quality: Develop an agenda of research topics needed for the student experience, continuously monitoring quality and changes in learner expectations.

Strengthen the Career Connected Learner Network and Implement the Student-Centric One College Organization

  • New Structure: Redesign and staff a new organizational structure to support One College.
  • Technology Improvements: Invest in technology and software to support One College.
  • Discipline-based Schools: Implement the Education Plan for discipline-aligned schools.
  • Capital Improvements: Meet the short and long-term educational needs of our students, employers and communities through construction of new buildings and renovation of existing facilities within sustainability and fiscal guidelines.
  • Community Engagement: Create enhanced community engagement through welcoming environments with more visible “front doors”, easier way-finding and services.
  • Partners for Needs: Continue to add appropriate partners to support student, employer and community needs.
  • Network Development: Assess and sustain network deployment including short-term and long-term needs.

Foster an Equitable, Diverse and Inclusive Environment for Students and Employees

  • Resource Groups: Support diversity, inclusion and belonging through the facilitation of employee resource groups linked to affiliations (race/ethnicity/other categories), roles, responsibilities and interests.
  • Student Programming: Encourage student programming designed to address inequities and to increase inclusion and engagement of all individuals in the life of the college and the community.

Redesign Professional Development to Create a Diverse and Inclusive High Performing Work and Learning Environment

  • Transitions Support: Support staff transitioning into new roles resulting from One College changes.
  • Faculty Development: Develop and implement a faculty development program aligned with new learning environments and the complex mix of students with varied background and needs.
  • Career Development: Develop a career development guided pathway program for staff, and administrators to build skills in student support, operations and leadership.
  • Leadership Capacity: Provide targeted leadership and management skills training designed to build an inclusive environment and professional growth of employees.
  • Job Descriptions: Through re-design of job descriptions, align positions with the leadership, instructional and operational needs of One College.
  • Evaluation System: Review and revise the employee evaluation system to incorporate best practices and position-aligned expectations.

Serve as the Primary Provider in the Talent Supply Chain Throughout the Region

  • Employer Needs: Adapt rapidly to the changing environment of employer-driven education models.
  • Youth Apprenticeships: Initiate and implement youth apprenticeships for ECHS/PTECHS and others.
  • Apprenticeships: Expand Registered and Industry Recognized apprenticeship programs and industry-recognized certifications across the employer spectrum.
  • Non-traditional Accountability Measures: In collaboration with major Texas community college districts, TEA, THECB and TWC, devise methods for capturing apprenticeship and industry certification records and incorporating results in state accountability measures (success points).
  • Innovation Hub: Develop and implement an innovation hub supporting small business development, entrepreneurship, technology applications and access to capital aligned with market demands and employer skills needs in collaboration with higher education and other partners.
  • Business Support: Support development, expansion and relocation of small, medium and large businesses.
  • Skills Gaps: Respond nimbly to skills gaps.

Fiscal Year 2020-21 Audit Plan

The audit plan focuses on delivering value to the institution with an emphasis on the following risk areas: strategic, operational, programmatic, financial, compliance and Information Technology. If new topics emerge during the audit plan period that requires more immediate attention, reconfiguration of the plan can be undertaken to accommodate these changes. Internal Audit’s goal is to complete 85% of the audit plan. As each audit is undertaken, risks will be re-evaluated to ensure proper audit coverage with due consideration given to confidentiality, integrity and availability. Internal Audit utilizes numerous electronic information systems (e.g., document images, financial, data analytics warehouses) in the performance of our audit projects.

​Compliance Audits

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Planned Engagement​Overview
Risk Area
Grant Compliance MonitoringDedicated resource performing ongoing monitoring of Grants for compliance with grant regulations and provisions and College policies and procedures so management can take proactive corrective action.Operations
Physical Assets Inventory ObservationObserve and test physical inventory and procedures pertaining to changes in inventory records.Operations
Cash CountsReview and test control over cash on hand accounts and Compliance with business procedures. (Unannounced)Operations
Richland Collegiate High SchoolAudit for compliance with Texas Education Agency attendance verification requirements.Operations
Information Technology General Controls
Audit for general controls and environment of the information technology operations.Operations

Programmatic Audits

Internal Audit will be coordinating specifics of the programmatic audit areas with the leaders in those areas as the structure and organization of Dallas College are finalized and implemented. One planned engagement that was identified in 2019-2020 and will be reviewed in 2020-2021 is the Dallas County Promise.

Planned EngagementOverview and ComponentsPercent Allocated to Area for Audit Coverage
Schools of: Creative Arts, Business/Hospitality, Education, Law & Public Service, Nursing/Health, Industry/Manufacturing and Engineering/Technology; Academic Success, E-Learning, Educational Partnerships and Academic incubator.
Student Success
Enrollment Management, Student Success, Student Wrap around Support, Program Portfolio and Schedule Management and Institutional Research.15%
Workforce and Development
Employer Relations and Corporate Partnerships, Advancement and Innovation Hub.
Government Relations, Strategic Initiatives, Marketing and Communications, Technology, Board Relations, Legal, Finance, Human Resources & Leadership and Talent Development and Social Responsibility.55%
Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake and Richland.5%

Special Projects and Annual Audit Activities

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Special ProjectsInvestigate fraud, waste and abuse allegations.
Audit Follow-upReview status of implementation of prior and outstanding audit recommendations and management corrective action plans.
External Audit Coordination/WorkManage and serve as the liaison for all external audit services including contracted and regulatory-imposed audits. Perform audit work under the direction of the external auditors as requested.
Quality AssuranceInternal Audit will undergo an internal mid-year review of its Quality Assurance and Improvement program to assess operations and practices with applicable standards. Additional effort will go into internal assessment to ensure the most effective and efficient procedures are in place and identify means of improving overall performance.

On August 6, 2019, the Board of Trustees approved the annual Fiscal Budget for 2019-20. This approved budget included the addition of up to two full-time equivalents within the Internal Audit Department. Upon hiring of the Chief, Internal Auditor, these positions will be recruited and hired.

Audit Resources

The audit plan for fiscal year 2020-21 is based on professional staffing of five full-time equivalents (FTEs) - Chief Internal Auditor (open position), Assistant Director (currently serving as the Acting, Interim Chief Internal Auditor), two Internal Auditors and a Grant Compliance Monitor.

Approximately 75% of Internal Audit’s available resources are committed to the completion of planned audit projects and investigations.

Internal Audit conducts follow-up audit procedures throughout the year to ensure that management is implementing controls as described within their responses to audit report recomme​ndations.

Audit resources are allocated as follows:

  • 53% of the Internal Audit’s available resource days are committed to the completion of planned audit projects and follow-up audit procedures.
  • 10% to accommodate requests from management and consultations within the institution.
  • 10% to conduct investigations into fraud, waste and abuse allegations.
  • 10% for employee professional development, internal quality improvement projects and other internal administrative functions.
  • 17%​ for compensated absences such as annual, sick, and holiday leave.