Aug 31, 2012

Customized training rep

Julie Vreeland is a new Customized Training and Continuing Education Representative at Central Lakes College who will work on a part-time, temporary basis this year. Her office is in the Business and Industry Center on the Brainerd campus. According to Rebecca Best, Dean of Workforce, Economic & Regional Development, Julie will be developing and expanding relationships and training partnerships with business and industry and other organizations in our region. She has served in the non-profit arena for over 30 years starting at the Brainerd Chamber in 1981 as the Administrative Assistant. She was the CEO of the Moorhead Area Chamber of Commerce. In 1997 Julie was named a Regional Director for Minnesota Technology Inc. (MTI) and served in that capacity for 5 years. She was responsible for consultant policy development, funding strategy development and implementation, and was the statewide director for manufacturing alliances. Most recently Julie worked as the Sales and Marketing Director for MicroNet. She works part-time as the Coordinator for the Brainerd Public Schools Foundation and is a graduate of Brainerd High School and St. Cloud State University.

Aug 29, 2012

FastTRAC grant

Due to a rise in job openings, local partners are working together to increase awareness and develop skills for entry into careers in the manufacturing employment sector. A FastTRAC Manufacturing grant in the amount of $100,000 is supporting the plan to build career pathways for unemployed/underemployed people. Partners are Rural Minnesota CEP, Central Lakes College, ISD 181 Brainerd Adult Basic Education, Clow Stamping and Manufacturing, Lexington Manufacturing, Pequot Tool, and Lakeland Mold. Graduates of one- and two-year diploma programs in machine tool technology, welding and fabrication, and robotics are finding employment opportunities in the manufacturing sector. The latest effort to supply trained employees to industry includes refresher and basic education that prepares students for college-level coursework.

Back to the 80s BBQ

Dining under warm sun and with the on-stage 80s music of Summertime Dropouts, about 500 students and staff enjoyed the free barbecue on the Brainerd campus today, served by members of the Counseling and Student Life departments at CLC. This is the middle of Welcome Week, with a free outdoor movie to be shown on a 25-foot screen at Findorff Field tonight at 8, following the Raider volleyball match vs. NDSCS at 6:30 p.m. in the gym. The lunch hour today in Brainerd also featured disc golf, as well as a community resource fair. Students continue to have the opportunity to attend orientation workshops in E203 each day of the week. Thursday's main attraction might be the sand volleyball tournament that starts at 4 p.m. next to the Findorff Athletic Complex parking lot. Friday offers a Club-Organization-Arts-Athletics Fair from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. outside the cafeteria, and free bowling at Jack's House from 9 p.m. to midnight. The Staples campus will enjoy comedian Mary Mack on Thursday noon in the Commons, as well as free bowling from 9 p.m. to midnight at Wadena Lanes. The week concludes Friday with the announcement of Scavenger Hunt winners on each campus, with $50 gas cards to all the winners.

Aug 28, 2012

College in Schools collaboration

College in the Schools held its annual in-service Aug. 23 at the Brainerd campus of Central Lakes College, with about 200 instructors, counselors, and adminstrators from 31 partnering school districts attending a full day of collaboration. CIS gives high schoolan an opportunity to strengthen their academic course offerings while providing juniors and seniors a jump-start on earning college credit. Classes are approved by CLC collborative instructors to esure academic rigor, but the classes are held on home campuses of the partnering school districts. Upon high school graduation, students who have participated in the CIS program make a smooth transition to a college setting. Schools are providing college-level courses in subjects such as science, math, sociology, history, political science, physical education, visual art, and music. High school students save thousands of dollars in tuition and develop skills essential for college success.

Welcome Week

Biology instructor Beth Mayers talked with Central Lakes College students Andrea Schuety (left) and Nick Bourassa, Brainerd High School graduates now working toward Associate in Arts degrees at the Brainerd campus of CLC. Monday was the first day of the 2012-13 academic year. This is Welcome Week, with students provided information about financial aid, using technology, financial planning, and planning for success coordinated by the CLC Counseling and Student Life departments -- all in E203. Today the schedule includes  CLC Trivia from noon- 1 p.m. in the Brainerd campus cafeteria, and a 2:30 p.m. Social Hour for veterans, PSEO and non-traditional students. At Staples today, the Staples Community Resource Fair is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., free root beer floats will be provided over the noon hour at the Student Senate meeting, and at 4 p.m. there is a Social Hour for AA degree students. Workshops on the same topics as Brainerd are scheduled throughout the day in the Assembly Room, and the scavenger hunt at Staples also progresses. The prize is a $50 gas card. Students can register at any workshop for prizes, including a Kindle Fire. The more they attend, the more chances to win.

Aug 27, 2012

Food shelf and bookstore update

The Brainerd campus of Central Lakes College has a new location for some important student-centered functions. You can now find the Student Life Center upstairs (C226) in the area that was formerly occupied by the Veterans Resource Center. This area includes a student lounge space, video games, pool tables, foosball, and free coffee for students every morning. Please feel free to stop by and visit with the students! The CLC Food Shelf is now located next to the Student Services windows in the Central Core area of the first floor at Brainerd. The Food Shelf is open each day. Food donations are accepted in the silver bins outside of the Food Shelf. This Student Food Shelf also accepts frozen food items, according to Erich Heppner, director of student life (218-855-8260, Meanwhile, one of the important duties assigned to support staff at the Information Center is the temporary holding of book bags while students pour into the CLC Bookstore to buy or rent texts and purhcase supplies. Elene Pawlu (left) and Carrie Ray are supervising this effort,a ssisted by CLC Security.

Fall term begins

They may need a little extra time to negotiate the College Drive construction zone for the next seveal weeks, but students arriving at the Brainerd campus of Central Lakes College today were energized and welcomed to the 2012-13 academic year at the community and technical college. Pam Smith and her Post-Secondary Enrollment Option student daughter, Laura, of Brainerd were sorting out a class schedule with help from Liz Tinsley in the Computer Commons this morning. With less vehicular impediment, students at Staples also made their way to the first full day of classes. Both campuses are observing Welcome Week, a new feature with orientation focus on resources from campus and community, social opportunities, free food, music, treats, and lots of good information to make life a little easier for those working hard to reach higher education goals. The president of our college, Dr. Larry Lundblad, greeted early arrivals at Staples and by noon was in Brainerd to kick off Welcome Week. As the weeks progress during the term, a host of community enrichment events and athletic competitions will be further evidence that "summer is over" in the region served by Central Lakes College. For images of the first day of the fall semester go to

Aug 23, 2012

Economic development forum

The Rosenmeier Center for State and Local Government at Central Lakes College (CLC) will host a Forum on the Economic Development Future of the Brainerd Lakes Area from 7 to 9:30 p.m., Wed., Sept. 5, in the Chalberg Theatre on the Brainerd campus. With the country still on shaky economic footing in the wake of the Great Recession and the city of Brainerd in its sixth year of double-digit unemployment, this panel will examine how the Brainerd Lakes Area can and should grow in the next 25 years to become and remain economically vital in an increasingly competitive and global economy. Scheduled panel participants: Cheryal Lee Hills, executive director of Region Five Development Corporation (R5DC.); Sheila Haverkamp, executive director of the Brainerd Lakes Area Economic Development Corporation (BLAEDC); Lisa Paxton, executive director of the Brainerd Lakes Chamber of Commerce; Charles Marohn, executive director of Strong Towns; and Mark Ostgarden, Brainerd city planner.

Aug 21, 2012

Caution on College Drive

When the fall semester at Central Lakes College begins Monday, Aug. 27, motorists and pedestrians will find College Drive in front of CLC 's Brainerd campus open with limitations. The reconstruction project is nearing completion, with an additional lane of traffic both ways eventually allowing for efficient transport and safe crossing. Currently the roadway is partially open for one lane in each direction -- east and west. While work continues at the west entrance near The Pines Apartments, access to the campus off College Drive and Mississippi Parkway is available from the north and east sides. Please drive safely, observe posted speed limits, and allow extra time to allow for temporary route adjustments. When completed, College Drive will offer stoplights at the west intersection near College Square and the east intersection at Brainerd High School. Three roundabouts will serve traffic between those stoplights.

Cultural Thursday: Cuba

The fall series of Cultural Thursday presentations at Central Lakes College, Brainerd, will commence with two presentations on Cuba by CLC sociologist Gary Payne on Thursday, Sept. 6. Both presentations will be in room E354 (lecture lab). The first presentation starts at noon and the somewhat longer evening presentation at 7 p.m. Payne has made three trips to Cuba, accompanied twice by his son Sayer in 1997 and in 2005. Cameras in hand, they traveled on foot, by taxi and in rented cars around the island but spent most of their time in Havana, staying with Cuban families. Payne will cover the turbulent history of this nation, U.S. involvement in Cuban affairs, the nature of Cuba’s unique brand of socialism and the culture that sprang from it. The presentations are free and seats are limited; early arrival is suggested for seating.

Aug 16, 2012

Welcome Week opens academic year

The fall semester of the 2012-13 academic year at Central Lakes College (CLC) in Brainerd and Staples, a community and technical college ranked by the Aspen Institute as one of the Top 120 in the U.S., begins Monday, Aug. 27. The first five days constitute Welcome Week for the more than 3,200 full- and part-time students enrolled at this point. Hundreds more will be added to the count when College in Schools program classes start at about two dozen partnering districts across the region. Welcome Week offers informative workshops and social events for students to attend as schedules allow, said Suzanne Karsnia, spokesperson for CLC counselors coordinating the orientation. The idea is to support student success. “It is important to meet and connect with others,” she said, “so there are many fun events to encourage this.”

Aug 13, 2012

Police dog demo

Baxter Police Officer Matt Maier and Gator, police dog, will provide a demonstration of their law enforcement specialty on Aug. 21 at 7 p.m. in Room E203 at Central Lakes College. The event is hosted by the Center for Lifelong Learning. Titled “Dog: Man’s Best Friend and Law Enforcer Extraordinaire,” the 45-minute program is free for children and grandchildren accompanied by an adult, with free admission for members of the Center for Lifelong Learning and $6 for non-members. Officer Maier said that dogs have become an important part of law enforcement, sniffing out drugs, tracking perpetrators, protecting law officers, and more. He will discuss what breeds make the best enforcer and protector and outline the training of these dogs. The program features realistic demonstrations of how a police dog works to combat crime.


The Central Lakes College Foundation, Brainerd and Staples, has announced the inception of two endowments – one bequest for a student engineering-science scholarship and one to support the activities of the Gordon Rosenmeier Center for State and Local Government at CLC. Roberta Rott of Maple Plain has provided $10,000 for a scholarship in the fall of 2013 for a second-year CLC student who has attained a 2.75 grade-point average and is pursuing studies in science or seeking an engineering Associate in Science degree. Preference will be given to a student participating in the TRiO Student Support Services program. The late Margaret Hastings (shown) of Little Falls provided a $55,500 bequest for the Rosenmeier Center due to her strong interest in the Center’s mission advancing citizen participation in government. She was a longtime companion of the late Senator Rosenmeier, who established the Center in 1988 three months prior to his death. Hastings was a native of Canada who was raised in a foster home and eventually became an elementary teacher. She taught for 25 years at Whittier School in Brainerd. In the last years of Rosenmeier’s life, she was his caregiver in Little Falls. She died in March of 2011.

International students

Eight new international students enrolled at Central Lakes College are being introduced this week by adviser Megan Heppner on the Brainerd campus. They are part of the Community Colleges for International Development program and have come to CLC for one year. "We have been BUSY in Chicago all week," Megan said last Friday, where the American welcome included a Chicago Cubs professional baseball game. More details about our newest international students is forthcoming from Megan.