Nov 30, 2011

Blood drive

Brandee Stomberg, Menahga, was among the 80 people who gave blood on Wed., Nov. 30 in the Brainerd campus gym as the Student Senate-sponsored project for the American Red Cross attracted numerous walk-in volunteers willing to donate a pint of red. Brandee said her fellow members of the Natural Resources Club hoped to contend for the prize awarded to the campus organization donating the most blood. The club captured that honor. This was Brandee's first such donation, and she did so just because she knows there is a critical need -- and you never know when you yourself may be the recipient of this life-sustaining gift. The senate thanks everyone who gave during the five-hour event. We'll get another opportunity in the spring at the Staples and Brainerd campuses.

Senators visit

Members of the Minnesota Senate Capital Investment Committee, led by Chairman David Senjem (R-Rochester), were welcomed to Central Lakes College Wed., Nov. 30 for a series of bonding presentations for proposed projects that could be approved for funding in the next legislative session. Other members scheduled to meet at CLC were John Carlson (R-Bemidji), Keith Langseth (D-Glyndon, ranking minority member), Carla Nelson (R-Rochester), Sandra Pappas (DFL_St. Paul), LeRoy Stumpf (DFL-Plummer), David Tomassoni (DFL-Chisholm), and Chuck Wiger (DFL-Maplewood). Other projects scheduled to present requests during the stop: Cuyuna wastewater infrastructure upgrades; Cuyuna drinking water infrastructure upgrades; Paul Bunyan Trail; Backus wastewater treatment facility improvements.

Check & Connect

Ann Chouinard and Aaron Mertes are two new employees at Central Lakes College, hired for the Check and Connect disabilities support program. They are referred to as “coaches” who will work as part of a team that includes counselors, advisers, Occupational Skills Program and disabilities services staff, faculty, family members, and the qualifying students. Ann last December received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work from the College of St. Scholastica after receiving her AA degree from Central Lakes College. Chouinard began as a C and C coach in May and she is a licensed social worker. Chouinard resides in Aitkin. Aaron earned his B.A. from the University of Minnesota Duluth after receiving an AA degree from Central Lakes College. He is a Brainerd High School graduate and had been employed at Confidence Learning Center, Pine River-Backus High School, and Life Support Services to gain nearly six years’ experience working with people with disabilities. Check and Connect is an initiative funded, in part, by a Transition Program for Students with Intellectual Disabilities (TPSID) grant for higher education. Partners in securing the grant include CLC and the OSP and disabilities programs at Ridgewater College, Willmar, and the Institute on Community Integration at the University of Minnesota. The Check and Connect program at CLC is an inclusive and comprehensive model for engaging and retaining students with intellectual disabilities in higher education.

Nov 29, 2011

Humphrey Center donation

A bow that once belonged to the late Pete Humphrey has been placed in the Skone Family Conservatory housing the Humphrey Center for American Indian Studies. LaVonne Danzl, whose late husband Bob had received the six-foot basswood hunting bow as a gift from his canoeing pal, Humphrey, recently donated the bow to the Humphrey Center so that it may be displayed along with the many other artifacts housed in the facility adjacent to the Jon Hassler Library at CLC. Humphrey had bequeathed his collection to the CLC Foundation in 1995. Bob Danzl died in 1999. The latest addition to the conservatory is in line with expansion plans, said Mary Sam, CLC director of intercultural services, diversity and tribal relations. “Our long term plan is to generate dollars to fund building interactive kiosks within the Center, a smart board for showing American Indian films and teaching for all ages, and a hands-on area that will allow guests to learn about American Indian crafts,” Mary said. Total cost of this undertaking will be about $45,000. Mary said the goal is to utilize the Center as a cradle to college learning and community engagement on American Indian issues.

To be a better teacher

“B is for Bully,” a new production by Theatre for a Diverse Population at Central Lakes College, explores the lasting effects of bullying. Designed to stimulate discussion, the show features student actors, including Amy Claypool of Bemidji (pictured). "I like being in this cast," she said. "And showing everyone that bullying happens all the time and it's not right. We need to start making some changes. I'm planning on being an elementary teacher, and I think this play is a great experience to learn about bullying. When I see it as a teacher I'll be able to help students. It happens way too much in our society. People are taking their own lives because of what's going on. No one should feel this way. People need to be aware...I don't have any acting experience, but I feel strongly the message needs to get out there. That's why I am performing in this show." CLC instructor Nancy Smith and members of Phi Theta Kappa honor society, will conduct a talk-back session after each performance. The show will be staged Nov. 30 and Dec. 2 at 10 a.m., Dec. 1, at noon, Dec. 2 at 7:30 p.m., and Dec. 3 at 2 p.m., with American Sign Language interpretation. Joining Amy in the cast are Alex Schmolke, Garrison; Jeremy Boltjes, Brainerd; Ann Campbell, Fargo; Grant King, Germantown, Tenn.; Cassandra Patrick, McGregor; Dillon Pool, Rockford; and Bea Mitchell, Onamia. Tickets are pay-what- you-can, with a $1 minimum. Recommended ticket cost is $5. To reserve tickets call the theatre box office at 218-855-8199 or on the web at

Nov 28, 2011

Fall celebration

Forty students were recognized as fall graduates of the Central Lakes College Heavy Equipment Operation and Maintenance program at Staples on Nov. 23. Keynote speaker at the fall celebration was Andy Mack of Strata Corp., Grand Forks, N.D., a member of the Heavy Equipment Advisory Board at CLC. Zachariah Helton of Baxter and Tad Woessner of Fergus Falls shared Outstanding Student honors for their participation level and demonstrated teamwork. Instructors participating in the event were Andy Anderson, Jeff Klehr, Mike Kuklok, John Maleski, Michael Sams, Corey Uhrich, and Gordy Vierkant. Staff participants included Jeff Wig, dean of career and technical programs and Staples Campus; Pam Thomsen, executive director of the CLC Foundation and Alumni Association; and Nancy Schmidt, Heavy Equipment Operations and Maintenance program coordinator. 

Nov 23, 2011

Prize winners

Prize winners have been announced from the Oct. 27 and 29 Tour of Manufacturing in Brainerd, Crosby, Jenkins, and Merrifield. Elias Peterson of Aitkin won an Ipad. Mitch Treichler and Branden Spaid, both of Brainerd, won Ipods. Prizes were donated by Clow Stamping Co., Graphic Packaging International, Lakeland Mold Co., Pequot Tool and Manufacturing, Precision Tool Technologies, and Central Lakes College. The tour attracted hundreds of guests to five area manufacturers for an inside look at good-paying jobs and the training designed to put skilled workers into those local opportunities.The Bridges Career Academies and Workplace Connection along with Central Lakes College collaborated to get the word out to students.

Corey Hins joins CLC tech team

Corey Hins of Brainerd, a 1990 Associate in Arts degree graduate of Central Lakes College in Brainerd, began working as a lead systems administrator with the Technology Services team at CLC on Nov. 21. "Corey will be a instrumental part of our team, and will focus on designing and engineering new technologies and systems, as well as supporting our highly complex network and server environment," said Scott Streed, CLC director of Technology Services. Corey, who has a working knowledge of multiple technical computer systems, has experience with Essentia Health (four years) and ISD 181 (12 years) as a network engineer. His experience includes working with systems such as Cisco Networking, Citrix, Exchange, SQL, VMWare, Active Directory, Group Policy, DNS, DHCP, Windows Print Server, ISA Server, HP SAN, Compellant SAN, and Sonicwall. He is a 1993 graduate of Computer Science NEI, Columbia Heights, which merged with Dunwoody in 2002. Corey graduated from Brainerd High School in 1987.

Nov 22, 2011

Explorer post

The Central Lakes College Natural Resources Club is sponsoring a new Explorer Post, which will meet Tuesday, Nov. 29 from 7 to 8 p.m. for a "First Nighter" in Room W 147 of the Brainerd campus, according to Adviser Kent Montgomery. Exploring is a unique career exploration program for young men and women ages 14 to 20 years old. The program provides students the opportunity to learn about careers in natural resources and network with professionals in the field. "The Exploring program is a great opportunity to find out whether a particular career field is right for you and to get to know other students who share your interests and work aspirations," said Kent. "Exploring can be the first step in identifying a future career while having fun in an exciting and informal environment." The Natural Resources Explorer Post First Nighter is an opportunity to learn more about the program to see if it’s right for you. For information contact Kent at (218) 855-8155 or

Nov 21, 2011

Veterans' Resource Center Coordinator

Kathy Marshik of Little Falls has been named coordinator of the Central Lakes College Veterans' Resource Center on the Brainerd campus, effective Nov. 28. She will serve as the liaison between Central Lakes College, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, the Minnesota National Guard, and the Director of Higher Education Veterans Programs and community service agencies. The VRCC meets with prospective and returning veterans to provide information about educational opportunities, the application process, financial aid and veterans’ funding procedures, and transfer of military educational credit. Kathy is a CLC grad as well as Concordia University, St. Paul (bachelor's), and Cappella University, Minneapolis (master's). She has 18 years of military experience as an administrative, training, and readiness supervisor, most recently as Medical Operations and Military Readiness Supervisor for the Army National Guard at Camp Ripley. She has 19 years' experience in the Minnesota Guard, serving in Iraq from January 2003 to April 2004.

Aquatic invasive species video

Central Lakes College Natural Resources instructor Kent Montgomery and NR student Jodi DuBay of Apple Valley appear in a new video public service announcement prepared in partnership with the DNR, Crow Wing Soil and Conservation District, Thirty Lakes Watershed District, and University of Minnesota Extension. The short PSA starts with a light-hearted "hitchhiker" scene at the south entrance to Brainerd on Old Highway 371. Then the teacher and student share tips for avoiding the transport of Eurasian water milfoil and other aquatic invasive plant and animal species. The video with Montgomery and DuBay is one of two produced as part of the project to restrain further infestation, which has already affected 18 lakes in the state. "We hope to reach a unique audience with these videos by showing young people and families involved in this issue," said Melissa Barrick, district manager with the SWCD. Distribution is through YouTube, Facebook, and other channels associated with younger audiences. To view, go to and copies or links may be obtained from Barrick by e-mailing or call (218) 828-6197.

Scholarships announced

The Central Lakes College Foundation in Brainerd and Staples has awarded $101,400 through 172 scholarships to 126 students during the fall semester of the 2011-12 academic year. Another round of awards is made each spring semester as well. The CLC Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization guided by a volunteer board of directors and housed on the Brainerd campus. Pam Thomsen is the executive director.

Nov 18, 2011

Theatre audition

Central Lakes College Theatre will hold an audition night Dec. 1 for those seeking roles in the February production “To Kill a Mockingbird.” A favorite with regional and academic companies, “To Kill a Mockingbird” has become one of the most performed shows in the nation. It was adapted into an Oscar-winning film in 1962 by director Robert Mulligan. Director Dennis Lamberson said the production, which will be staged Feb. 10-19 in Dryden Theatre on the Brainerd campus, will have a cast of eight women and 11 men ages 16-75. Two boys age 10-14, and one girl age 9-11 are needed, as are two actors and two actresses of color. The audition time Dec. 1 is 7 p.m. in Chalberg Theatre. Actors will read from the script for the audition.

Videography tour

Central Lakes College first-year Videography Production students recently spent a day in the Twin Cities visiting television production facilities and meeting professionals who work in the field. Mark Ambroz, instructor, said the metropolitan area has a robust production industry. “The goal of this trip is to introduce students to the career potential in that market,” he said. The group visited KARE 11 in Golden Valley, an NBC affiliate that has a major news market share in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area as well as across the state. Students received a tour from KARE News Director Jane Helmke, who is a member of the CLC Videography Production Advisory Board. The students watched the morning show from inside the studio and met producers, photographers, and editors in the newsroom. They also toured Cinequipt and Tremendous! Entertainment (where the Travel Channel's "Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern" is produced).

Nov 16, 2011

All about Joe

Friends and former colleagues of retired Central Lakes College instructor-author Joe Plut will want to read a new blog about the "mad hugger." It is by Bob Collins of Minnesota Public Radio. It was posted today in advance of the dedication of the Joe Plut Reading Room at Prairie Bay in Baxter. Collins interviewed Joe at Prairie Bay for about 3 hours last Saturday. Joe's book "Conservations with Jon Hassler," is inspiring fans of the late author (another former CLC instructor for whom the Brainerd campus library is named) to re-read the novels Jon wrote before he died in 2008. The blog:

Nov 15, 2011

Fall celebration

The annual "Fall Celebration" honoring 40 graduates of the Heavy Equipment Operations and Maintenance program, will be held at the Staples campus of Central Lakes College on Wed., Nov. 23, with a lunch and program. The featured speaker will be Andy Mack of Strata Corp., Grand Forks, N.D., a member of the Heavy Equipment Advisory Board at CLC. Strata Corp. has hired numerous CLC graduates. Mack, who is employed as Dirt Coordinator in the Construction Division at Strata, has worked for the North Dakota Department of Transportation. He has a degree in Construction Management from North Dakota State University. The event starts at noon in the campus commons, with a welcome at 12:15 p.m. and the buffet lunch of roast beef, a photographic slide show, the speaker, and presentation of graduates. Those attending may RSVP by Thursday to Nancy Schmidt, Heavy Equipment coordinator, at (218) 894-5136 or The luncheon cost is $11.50 per person, payable at the door.

Nov 14, 2011

MnSCU appointments

Steven Rosenstone, chancellor of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, recommended on Monday that the Board of Trustees appoint Douglas Knowlton (far left) to be vice chancellor for academic and student affairs and Michael Dougherty to be vice chancellor for advancement. Knowlton is the president of Dakota State University in Madison, S.D., and Dougherty is vice president of communications at the Valspar Corp. and president of the Valspar Foundation. Before taking his current position in 2004, Knowlton was vice chancellor for academic affairs and a tenured professor at the University of Minnesota, Crookston. He served on what was the Minnesota State Board of Technical Colleges and the Minnesota Higher Education Board before the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities began operations in 1995. Before taking the Valspar position, Dougherty held a variety of positions at 3M, including director of global communications; managing director of a Swedish subsidiary, Svenska AB; vice president of operations at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce; acting deputy assistant secretary for legislation at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; and manager of government relations and legislative assistant at Pillsbury Co.

Celebration of Nations

The Central Lakes College Diversity Leadership Council and International Club are co-hosting an organizational meeting Nov. 21 for the April 20, 2012 Celebration of Nations at CLC. The Celebration of Nations is a diversity event that showcases cultural displays, music, food, performances, dance, and activities. The co-sponsoring clubs are enlisting faculty and staff to oversee student committees in the following areas: building of structures, decorating, and activities in the various cultural areas and public relations (posters, advertising/publicity on campus and in the community). Tashana Husom, DLC adviser, is asking potential staff volunteers to contact her at 855-8013 or email The first meeting is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 21 from 4 to 5 p.m. in E203 in the Business and Industry Center on the Brainerd campus. "We are excited to sponsor the third annual event," said Tashana, "and we thank you in advance for your involvement and support in this endeavor."

Nov 10, 2011

Cultural Thursday

Swedish exchange student Luba Wiander, 17, who is attending Brainerd High School for this academic year, will present a free public program on her Scandinavian homeland on Thursday, Dec. 1 at noon on the campus of Central Lakes College in Brainerd. The Cultural Thursday presentation concludes at 12:50 p.m. after a question-answer period. Self-described as a happy girl who likes to try new things, Luba has completed one year of high school in Stockholm. Among her interests are piano and all music, travel, American history and government, photography and art communication, Nordic skiing, and several foreign languages. She is living with the Brock and Jaimi Peterson family of Baxter. Geographically, Sweden is the largest country in northern Europe and fifth in the whole of Europe. The country is home to world-famous brands like Volvo, Ikea, Saab, and Ericsson. It is the home of Bluetooth and the ATM. Swedes enjoy one of the highest standards of living in Europe. Sweden has a long and proud history of academic excellence, with outstanding universities dating back to the 15th century. Sweden is the home of the Nobel Prize, the world’s most prestigious academic distinction. Swedish university students are required to pay a membership fee in the student union, but no tuition. All employees (including graduate students) get 5 weeks of paid vacation a year. Parents get a total of 13 months of paid maternity leave and the father is required to take at least 1 month of it.

Nov 8, 2011

CLC is 'military-friendly'

Central Lakes College has earned a spot as a "Top Military-Friendly" institution listed in Military Advance Education's 2012 Guide to Military-Friendly Colleges and Universities. The listing displays the college logo, a 75-word description with enrollment numbers, average class size, degrees offered, and acknowledges credits for military training, transfer credits, staff trained in military needs, support services for veterans, and dedicated admissions officials responsive to the needs of veterans and families. To be listed in the fifth annual guide, CLC met rigorous criteria to demonstrate comprehensive focus respecting the value of citizen soldiers and their rights to succeed after service. "The men and women that serve our nation do so with true devotion and the same can be said of your faculty and staff," said Glenn R. Berlin, associate publisher. "I congratulate the entire staff at Central Lakes College for the inspired effort that you put into making it easier for our men and women in uniform to advance their careers by enhancing their educations."

Nov 7, 2011

Race equity policy fellow

Rep. Carlos Mariani Rosa, Jennifer Godinez, and the Race Equity and Excellence in Education Leadership Team met at the Brainerd campus of Central Lakes College today. Rep. Rosa (pictured) is also the Executive Director of the Minnesota Minority Education Partnership. Ms. Godinez is associate director. CLC hosted the kick-off of the Race Equity and Excellence in Education Leadership Team. School administrators and educators as well as leaders from at least six communities were invited, according to Mary Sam, CLC Director of Intercultural Services, Diversity, and Tribal Relations. With a grant from the Otto Bremer Foundation, our college was selected to house a short-term, part-time Race Equity Policy Fellow, one of three locations (Duluth and the Twin Cities have the other two). The CLC Fellow will provide support and assistance, to develop and enhance the work of area stakeholder to develop a long-term and sustainable action plan to address race equity and excellence in education from the Mille Lacs area to Staples. Mary Sam is leading the CLC effort.

Choir concert

The Central Lakes College fall choir concert, “On Wings of Song,” will be presented at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 17 in Chalberg Theatre on the Brainerd campus. This free, public concert includes performances by the CLC Chamber Singers, Cantare’ Concert Chorale, Men’s Ensemble, and Women’s Ensemble. It features a variety of classical, folk, multi-cultural, and contemporary music – from Schubert to Enya. Featured vocalists are Hope Mankowski, Katie LeClaire, and Shayna Rudlang McGerr, all of Brainerd; Jennifer Hanes, Aldrich; Peter Lucken, Melrose; and Ryan O’Rourke, North St. Paul. Drummer Michelle Miller and bass guitarist Nathan Bollig are also in the spotlight. The choirs are directed by Michelle Sakry-Winkelman, with piano accompaniment by Sarah Gorham. Other choir members include Grace Bradford, Laura Hamblin, and Emily LeClaire, all of Brainerd; Katie Campbell, Motley; Marissa Jasmer, Aldrich; Randi Esse, Little Falls; Terah Pontius, Baxter; Christopher Olson, North Branch; Janiqua Robinson, Hinckley; Nick Jasmer, Bertha; Dustin Motschenbacher, Wadena; and Jennamarie DiMartino, Deerwood. A reception will be held following the concert.

Senators help community

This past Friday and Saturday the Staples and Brainerd Student Senate groups came together to rake and clean yards for the elderly in the Staples Community. They completed a total of 8 yards in 9 hours. This is a free service that the Student Senate seeks to provide each fall in the Staples community and again in the spring semester for the Brainerd community. A special "thank you" to Steve Mau at Brainerd General Rental for donating several leaf blowers for this event! Also thank you to CLC Maintenance and Horticulture for the use of their equipment.
-- Erich Heppner, Director of Student Life

Nov 4, 2011

Mobile internet

Central Lakes College is now MOBILE with the recent launch of the new mobile internet site: A mobile device enables the user to access the following:
- Academic/Events Calendar
- CLC News and Athletics Blog
- Academic Program Directory
- Class Cancellations Notification
- Entry for D2L and Student Gmail
- CLC Social Media
And more. “Mobile is the future of internet browsing,” said Kenn Dols, Director of Marketing and Public Relations. “We have developed a mobile presence to meet the current and future needs of our students and the communities we serve.” Nearly half (48.7 percent) of smartphone owners in the U.S. are between the ages of 25 and 44, with younger users between the ages of 13 and 24 representing nearly one-fourth of all smartphone owners (23.8 percent). That’s according to comScore MobiLens for a three-month average ending last April. Statistics show that over the next four years mobile internet will surpass desktop internet usage. “This is a significant change in consumer habits, which we cannot ignore,” Dols said. “CLC is focused on meeting the needs of students.”

Grand opening

Joe Plut, retired Central Lakes College English and humanities instructor, has a room named for him at Prairie Bay Restaurant, Baxter. The porch area has been remodeled into the Joe Plut Reading Room, decorated with books and paintings. The Joe Plut Reading Room grand opening is Wednesday, Nov. 16 at Prairie Bay. Joe will sign copies of his book, "Conversations with Jon Hassler," from 6 to 9 p.m., with a half-hour program from 7 to 7:30. The restaurant and bar will be open. Light hors d'oeuvres will be served. Guests may make reservations for dinner, mentioning the reservation in conjunction with the "grand opening." The banquet room will be open for those not attending the Reading Room celebration. A drawing for a copy of Jon Hassler's hardbound 1987 novel, "Grand Opening," will be at 9 p.m.

Photo by Steve Kohls, Brainerd Dispatch

Rose Ensemble workshop

Members of The Rose Ensemble gave a one-hour workshop today in the Central Lakes College Music Rehearsal Hall on the Brainerd campus. The group will perform "Songs of Temperance and Temptation: 100 Years of Restraint and Revelry in Minnesota" at 7 p.m., today in Chalberg Theatreas part of the Cultural Arts Series. Theshow is a musical exploration of the humor and history behind Prohibition and Minnesota’s long-standing love/hate relationship with the pub. Concert tickets: $12, available for purchase directly from The Rose Ensemble. Available online at purchase by telephone, call 651-225-4340, before 5 p.m.

Exporting opportunities

Exports are an important driver of business growth, and small companies have a lot to gain by selling products and services in foreign markets. But with limited staff, finances, and expertise, owners are often hesitant to pursue international opportunities. Backed by a State Trade and Export Promotion grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the Minnesota Trade Office and Minnesota Department of Agriculture are offering more programs in the coming year to help small businesses expand sales into foreign markets. Join us on Monday, November 14, to learn more about opportunities available and how your company can participate in planned trade missions, trade shows, and conferences at reduced rates, and get reimbursement for export credit insurance for overseas sales. This one hour event will be held on the Brainerd Campus of Central Lakes College, Business & Industry Center, 501 W College Drive, Door #6, Room E203 on November 14th at 8:30 am. Join us for coffee and rolls and the program will begin at 9:00 am. Please call or email to reserve your spot by November 10: 218-855-8140, The event is funded in part through a grant award with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Nov 3, 2011

Training grant

Central Lakes College President Larry Lundblad (right) joined Dan Swenson, CEO of CentraCare Health System at Long Prairie to sign a $178,406 Minnesota Job Skills Partnership Grant through which CLC will train 279 employees at the facility. The third signer was Paul Moe, executive director of MJSP and the Workforce Development Division of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. Moe said the three-year grant project will incorporate "Transforming Care at the Bedside" principles throughout CentraCare. Other objecives are to better serve the Hispanic population and medical management of specific staff-created projects to sustain a patient-centered energy. Nurses, emergency medical technicians, medical technicians, and medical transcriptionists will learn techniques to improve quality and safety of patient care using a national program developed by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The project's total value is $423,312 based on a $238,343 private-sector match (including in-kind), $6,563 from CLC and the $178,406 from the people of Minnesota. This the 19th MJSP grant since 1998 for CLC, said Rebecca Best, dean of workforce, regional and economic development. Eloise Thorson, customized trainer at CLC, is project coordinator.

Nov 2, 2011

'Voyageur Skies'

Mark Seeley, author and climatologist, will join photographer Don Breneman to present "Voyageur Skies: Weather and the Wilderness in Minnesota's National Park," a free, public program, on Tuesday, Nov. 15 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in Chalberg Theatre on the Brainerd campus of Central Lakes College. The event is sponsored by the Brainerd Area Environmental Learning Network and the Center for Lifelong Learning at CLC. The presenters will share their thoughts regarding "Voyageur Skies," their book, which features a history of the park, its seasons, lakes, wildlife, and climate. You'll have time to ask questions and meet both, with books available for purchase and signing.

Italy trip meeting

An informational meeting for the next Central Lakes College travel study trip to Italy will be held Monday, Nov. 21 from 7 to 8 p.m. in room E 354 (Lecture Hall) of the Brainerd campus. The Italian Renaissance Experience, led by English and Humanities instructor Michael Soderlund, will travel to Rome, Florence, and Venice from May 17-28, 2012. The study trip will explore the art and culture of the Italian Renaissance. While students enrolled at the college have first priority for enrollment, any remaining room on the trip will be made available to community members after student registration has ended. For information, e-mail Michael Soderlund at or phone 218-855-8152.

Nov 1, 2011

Faith vs. fear

As a result of local anti-poverty initiatives, Central Lakes College speech instructor Kari Frisch is participating in a world-wide project to end hunger. She is involved with the Hunger and Agriculture Griots Project, a program designed to train passionate volunteers into powerful spokespersons in the fight against hunger. It is sponsored by the World Food Program, WFP-USA and ONE. Her "Service for CLC" blog explains the activity. Kari is taking a six-week online "Groit" course, which includes access to cutting-edge articles, videos, lectures and fact sheets about global hunger and sustainable agriculture, as well as skill-building tutorials. In West Africa, a Griot is a storyteller, a singer, a history keeper and an agent of cultural change. As a participant Kari has agreed to organize her own action project to educate and mobilize peers, learn to write letters to the editor and to use new media tools for advocacy, and refine public speaking and presentation skills. She is attempting to recruit at least 11 more and to create a social network buzz at the 11th hour through a "Team11" concept, focusing on 11-11-11 as a day for donors to give non-perishable food items to local food shelves. One may also donate food globally by playing a game at and recruit 11 other people. "One of the largest lessons I've learned about myself from the class so far," Kari said, "was that I was going to have to rely on faith versus fear."