President Anne Temte
Monday, March 2, 2015
We returned from a week-long vacation a short time ago. The transition from Minnesota’s white vistas to the red and gold canyon lands of Southern Utah and back again has me amazed by the environmental diversity of our great country. We spent the week enjoying crystal clear skies, wild scenery bearing evidence to tremendous geological forces, and trails that led UP and DOWN over sandstone rocks and sand. While others were bundled up in parkas for the 50-65 degree days, we were in shorts and t-shirts. The little creatures that scurried away from our steps were lizards, not squirrels. It was a glorious week!
Back on the ground here in NW Minnesota, there is no lack of activity. This week, I’ll highlight:
- Career Expo Day
- Center of Excellence Grant Awards
- 2015 All-Minnesota Academic Team
- Pioneer Women’s Basketball
- Quality Matters
- NCTC’s Team XNOR at St. Cloud State University VEX U Regional Qualifier Competition
- Minnesota State Budget
Career Expo Day – Over 150 students and counselors from eleven area high schools visited the Thief River Falls campus on February 25. Northland faculty members provided students with opportunities to participate in hands-on activities in classrooms and laboratories. Many employees pitched in to make this a great day for prospective students to find out what their educational life at Northland might be like.
Center of Excellence Grant Awards – Northland has received funding from two of the Centers of Excellence of which it is a member. These funds are awarded by MnSCU to worthy initiative proposals. A total of $81,000 was awarded to the Transportation Center of Excellence for an aviation maintenance initiative at Northland and $71,150 was awarded to AgCentric, the northern Center of Excellence in Agriculture, for UAS training and curriculum development at Northland.
2015 All-Minnesota Academic Team – Kelsey Weber, a student at the East Grand Forks Campus has been selected to the 2015 All-Minnesota Academic Team by the member institutions of the Minn-kota region. This is a distinct honor. Kelsey and other team members will be honored at a banquet at the College of St. Benedict in April.
Pioneer Women’s Basketball – Lots of news here. The Pioneer Women finished the basketball season with 24 wins and 2 losses. They won the Northern Division with a 14 win, 0 loss record. Northland was ranked #1 in the NJCAA National poll as of last week. The Region 13B Women’s Basketball tournament was held at Northland on Feb. 28 and March 1. The Pioneer Women lost a heart-breaking game to Mesabi Range College 77 to 75, but what a game it was! Thank you to all of the players and Coach Nelson for your hard work and commitment to Pioneer Athletics.
Coach Shannon Nelson has taken her team to the NJCAA Division III National Tournament in each of the last five years. Additionally, Shannon has been named co-Northern Division Coach of the Year. Hats off to Shannon!
Quality Matters – Even though she is focused on the basketball season, Shannon Nelson has taken the time for academic excellence. Shannon teaches business classes at the Thief River Falls Campus and recently received Quality Matters course certification for her MKTG2120 Supervisory Leadership course.
NCTC’s Robotics Team XNOR Wins Tournament – This past Saturday at the St. Cloud State University VEX U Regional Qualifier Competition, Northland Community and Technical College‘s Robotics Team performed exceptionally well. NCTC’s Team, XNOR, earned four of the five total awards at the competition. The XNORs took home the following awards: Tournament Champions, Excellence Award, Programming Skills, and Robot Skills. In addition the XNORs have earned the highest Programming Skills Score in the world rankings and they are currently tied for fourth place in the Robot Skills world rankings. Congratulations to Team XNOR members and to their instructor/coach, Andrew Dahlen. Well done!
Minnesota State Budget – When Governor Dayton released his first version of the state budget for the next biennium, he withheld any additional funding for the MnSCU system. He wanted assurances that the system leadership and the leadership of the two faculty unions were making progress on working together.
On Friday, Feb. 27, the state budget forecast was released, projecting a surplus of nearly $1.9 billion. The Governor’s second iteration will follow this forecast on March 9. However, he did hold a press conference on Friday to discuss how he intends to spend the surplus that has been projected. In this conference he said that affordable higher education is a crucial investment for the future of Minnesota. Dayton said, “I will propose the same $95 million of additional funding for MnSCU (that I did for the U of M system), which will fully fund the tuition freeze for the first year of the biennium, and half the cost of the freeze for the second year. I will ask them to fund the other half through administrative savings.”
At Northland, we have had difficulty moving ahead with budget planning for FY2016 because of the insecurity of future funding. Although the Governor’s proposal is not the final word on the budget, we at least have an indication of what funding might be available.
The legislative session continues until May 16. I will continue to share information with you.
Hope you all have a great week.
Upcoming College Events
Tuesday, March 3, 2015
11:00 a.m. – Healthy Campus Health Fair – TRF Commons
Thursday, March 5, 2015
TBD – Baseball @ SECC
Monday, March 9, 2015
TBD – Baseball @ Richland College
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
TBD – Baseball @ Eastfield College
Wednesday, March 11, 2015
10:00 am – CNA Testing – EGF Campus
TBD – Baseball @ North Lake College
Friday, March 13, 2015
TBD – Baseball @ Mountain View College
My Schedule this Week:
Monday, Mar. 2 – St. Paul – MnSCU Leadership Council
Tuesday, Mar. 3 – St. paul – MnSCU Leadership Council
Wednesday, Mar. 4 – EGF – Shared Governance Council
Thursday, Mar. 5 – EGF – GRFEDC Board, Executive Committee
Friday, Mar. 6 – TRF – Cabinet