From “On the job hunt: Unfilled jobs across America, are you qualified?” — Every day we hear the steady drumbeat. Unemployment over 9 percent. People who can’t find jobs exhausting their unemployment benefits. Going months – even years without work. Losing their homes to foreclosure. Marital and family breakups. Homelessness. It is tragic. No question.

But here’s a bizarre twist. While millions of people can’t find work, there are many American companies who can’t find people to fill open jobs. Thousands of jobs. Good paying jobs.

Drive along Riley Street in Zeeland, Mich,. and you’ll come across an unusual sight in America.

It’s a “now hiring” sign. It has been there for more than a year. It’s in front of the Gentex Corporation. Gentex is a high-tech manufacturer that makes “smart” rearview mirrors for cars.

Mirrors that darken at night. Mirrors that dim your high beams to an oncoming car. That have backup camera displays in them. That will tell your cruise control that you’re getting too close to the vehicle in front of you. They are in high demand – not just in the U.S., but among automobile manufacturers around the world. Gentex makes other products as well, including those new hi-tech windows for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner that darken at the touch of a button. Business is booming.

And Gentex has jobs it can’t fill. More than 200 of them. And it plans to add another 1,150 in the next five years.

“Our problem right now is – we’re growing like crazy.” That’s Bruce Los talking. He’s Gentex’s Vice President of Human Relations. He bears a striking resemblance to actor Bruce Willis. He’s the guy in charge of finding people to fill vacant jobs.

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From Chippewa Valley Technical College: “Eau Claire Big Rig Truck Show sets up at CVTC” — 

From tricked out trucks to talking to Ice Road Trucker Alex Debogorski, the Eau Claire Big Rig Truck Show had it all!

Over 15,000 people came to the Chippewa Valley Technical College parking lot August 19-21 to get a close up view of the trucks you see on the highway. It was the graphics on these trucks that caught people’s attention. From everything from skulls to the ever popular Green Bay Packer truck, attendees had a lot to look at. Event highlights included the truck light show on Friday night and the truck parade on Saturday night, but the entertainment didn’t stop with just the trucks.

A line of eager fans waiting to get the autograph of Alex Debogorski was consistently more than two dozen people throughout the weekend. “He’s such an engaging guy,” Bob Loughan, CVTC Truck Driving instructor said. “He carries on a conversation with everyone coming through and really makes it a special experience for everyone.”

Rusty Naylor, CVTC Diesel and Heavy Equipment Instructor, had a blast showing off his program’s diesel truck engine that was collaborated to a computer so onlookers could see miles to the gallon, RPMs and more. “We let people turn on the engine and then see what happens to the numbers as the RPMs are increased. People seem excited to learn more about these large engines and what it takes to haul the big loads they see on the highway.”

Thousands of people lined Clairemont Avenue, Water Street, and Menomonie Street on Saturday night to watch the truck parade. The lights on the trucks were the showcase of the parade, but it was another chance to show off the great paint jobs. “We saw the trucks and stopped by to see what was going on,” a family commented as they sat on the hill near the CVTC bridge. “It’s pretty cool to see the trucks, but then to see the lights that go along with them is great!”

“This was a great success,” commented Terry Biddle, organizer of the Big Rig Truck Show. “The new venue at CVTC has worked out perfectly, and it really gives us a chance to grow the show for next year.”

From “Making eyeglasses fit for a princess” — Annie Ellsworth, 3 years old, pulled off her glasses and issued a declaration: Princesses don’t wear glasses.

Her mom, Kristin, saw an opportunity to prove her wrong – and start a business in the process.

The result is Peeps Eyewear LLC, a new Madison company that sells sparkly, pink and purple eyeglass frames in 67 stores in Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana.

Packaged in an organza cinch bag, each frame comes with a soft case and a book Ellsworth wrote about a princess who “gets to” wear glasses. Customers can also buy a dress-up kit, which includes a crown and a satin, sparkly cape like the one Princess Annie wears in the book.

“What I’ve done is tried to fight fun with fun and create an image of a brave and heroic and curious princess wearing glasses,” Ellsworth said.

Ellsworth was trained as a lawyer but drawn to entrepreneurship after taking a class at the Fox Valley Technical College’s Venture Center and grappling with her daughter’s vision issues. The college’s fabrication lab helped her create the first prototype of the frames, said Ellsworth, who has funded the company herself.

Ellsworth founded Peeps about 18 months ago. The company took first place in the business services category for the 2010 Wisconsin Governor’s Business Plan Contest.

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From “Robotic milking and cow cams come to NTC” — Wireless cameras, solar panels, and robots would seem at home in a laboratory, but one local school is putting all that tech to the test on the farm.

School and a brand new agriculture center opened this week at Northcentral Technical College. Staff say students will hit the books, But they’re also hitting the buttons to control a new robotic cow milking machine. They are trying to prepare the kids for the farms of the future.

“The average age of a milk producer in Marathon County is 59 years old,” said NTC President Lory Weyers. “We need to have the next generation of people coming up because we all drink milk, the majority of us anyways, so we are committed to making sure that stays strong.”

The students can earn agriculture associate degrees. Majors include dairy science, agribusiness, and how to be a vet tech. The hope is a student-run operation gives them the chance to learn the skills to run their own farm.

“Some kids grew up on a farm but their parents never really let them get into it,” said Farm Manager Jordan Mueller. They didn’t get to call the shots, they didn’t get to plant the corn, they had jobs, management jobs, but they didn’t have exposure to anything and now they get to get that.”

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From “A century later, Fox Valley Technical College’s focus unchanged” — A century ago, Fox Valley Technical College offered teenage students a chance to prepare for mostly gender-specific trades, such as horseshoeing, cabinet-making, dress-making and cooking.

One hundred years later, FVTC serves more than 52,000 people of all ages and educational backgrounds, and is the third-largest technical college out of 16 in the state. It offers more than 200 programs of study.

The college has seen advancements in course offerings and technology capabilities from 1911 to 2011, and gender roles now are much less rigidly defined. There are men studying nursing and women studying to be electricians.

FVTC’s mission, however, hasn’t changed, said Susan May, FVTC’s president.

“One of the premises for the creation of our system was an educational system that was open to everyone regardless of their income or employment status or anything,” May said. “It was a way to allow people to access education beyond wherever they might have concluded that initial education. And that access for people to higher education has been a longstanding commitment this organization has made to people in the region.”

From “Training exercise teaches students how to prepare for a fire” — 

Firefighters spent six hours putting out flames in Weston Saturday.

It wasn’t a real house fire, but a controlled training exercise to teach students about real life scenarios.

Northcentral Technical College students training to be firefighters were gearing-up to put out a house fire, so when an emergency call comes in they are prepared to put out the blaze.

Professional firefighters first walked students through a home off Weston Avenue, to get a sense of the confined areas where they would be training. Then they had to ignite a live fire, wait for the smoke to accumulate and rise before they can extinguish the flames.

Firefighters said there are many things they have to consider in order to keep everyone safe.

“Be careful with the ceiling possibly coming down. You know it always goes through your head if there’s a basement underneath you that there’s no fire underneath you because you don’t want to be falling through the floor either,” said Weston Lt. Evan McVain.

Certain areas in the house were set on fire at different times throughout the exercise.

An instructor said as the smoke rises it gets so thick that it’s impossible to walk through, so that’s why firefighters always tell you to crawl.

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From the “Mobile lab takes NWTC manufacturing training on the road” — Dave LeBrun just wanted some up-to-date equipment for his tech classes as Southern Door High School.

A ceremony Thursday at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay demonstrated what can happen when you want the right things.

NWTC introduced its Computer Integrated Manufacturing Mobile Laboratory, a 44-foot trailer housing 12 CAD/CAM computer stations and two computer numerical control (CNC) machines, a lathe and a mill that will travel to rural high schools to give students hands-on exposure to modern manufacturing.

Manufacturing companies “are not limited by finding work. They are limited by finding a skilled work force,” said Tara LeClair, business and education manager with Door/Kewaunee Business & Education Partnership, one of several organizations that collaborated to create the lab.

It cost $323,000, of which $250,000 was provided through a grant from the Bay Area Workforce Development Board, and it was built by DEPCO LLC of Pittsburg, Kan.

From “Moraine Park reveals new mascot” — As a kickoff to its upcoming centennial year, Moraine Park Technical College revealed its new mascot, the Moraine Park Gray Wolf, to students, faculty, staff and the public during its welcome back lunch at the Fond du Lac campus.

New MPTC President Sheila Ruhland had the honor of revealing the new gray wolf mascot to the 2011 student body.

“I believe you will feel as I do, that what it (the gray wolf) symbolizes — pathfinders, success, perseverance, stability and thought — truly embodies the spirit of not only you as students but also our faculty and staff,” said Ruhland.

Ruhland said the mascot was initiated by MPTC’s 2009-10 District Student Government which approached then-president Gayle Hytrek with the idea of creating a mascot for the college.

Hytrek charged members of student government with developing a mascot they felt accurately reflect Moraine Park’s student body, and the idea of the Moraine Park Gray Wolves was born.

Students and staff now have the opportunity to leave their own mark on history by suggesting names for the mascot and then voting on the final selections.

The voting will take place Sept. 6 to 16, with the name announced the week of Sept. 19.

From “WITC proposes second phase of expansion, renovation” — Just a year removed from completion of a major renovation and expansion project, the New Richmond campus of Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College is gearing up for another round of construction.

The WITC board of directors has unanimously approved a $1.5 million renovation project at New Richmond’s Power Equipment Center, a $1.5 million classroom expansion of the main campus building and a $1 million renovation of existing commons space for 2012.

According to Campus Administrator Joe Huftel, the local plan now awaits final approval from the Wisconsin Technical Colleges board of directors. He expects that approval to come within the next 45 days.

“There are high levels of oversight to make sure we’re not overbuilding,” Huftel explained. “But this really is a no-brainer for us.

If approval happens, WITC officials hope to start seeking construction bids by January, with construction to start in the spring of 2012. The hope is to have the expansion and renovations completed for occupancy in the fall of 2012.


From “Gov. Walker seeks applicants for student representative on the WTCS Board” —  Governor Scott Walker announced today that he is seeking applicants for a student representative on the Wisconsin Technical College System Board. The student representative is appointed for a two year term, must be over the age of 18, a state resident, enrolled at least half-time, and be in good academic standing. Please note that due to Fox Valley Technical College having been recently represented on the board, no applications will be accepted from this institution.

The Technical College System Board is the coordinating agency for the Technical College System. The board establishes statewide policies and standards for the educational programs and services provided by the 16 technical college districts that cover the state.

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From “Green Bay-area colleges: Collaboration key to success” – If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes collaboration among area colleges to educate him or her.

Educators at St. Norbert College, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College say they believe in collaboration to make the best post-secondary options for students.

Schools transfer credits and share speakers. Top administrators meet at least once a semester, as well as serve on some of the same committees.

It’s a trend educators say they hope to expand.

“The missions of the colleges are different, so I don’t see us as being in competition,” said Anne Kamps, dean of learning solutions at NWTC. “Our goal is to improve students’ lives, which in turn will improve the community and all of our lives. Education is something we know is always helpful.”

For example, UW-Green Bay accepts transfer students from NWTC through the general studies and bachelor of applied studies programs. UW-Green Bay also works closely with Bellin College, allowing Bellin’s nursing students to take some classes at the four-year campus.

From “Wisconsin Technical Colleges receive $200,000 from Accelerating Opportunity” — Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College is one of the 16 Wisconsin Technical Colleges that has been awarded a $200,000 grant from several national foundations seeking to transform the way underprepared individuals get access to adult education. According to a press release, the grant is part of the Accelerating Opportunity, a Breaking Through Initiative project to redesign adult basic education and postsecondary programs to integrate basic skills with practical, occupational training required in today’s job market.

Accelerating Opportunity, managed by Boston-based Jobs for the Future (JFF), is working with 10 other states that have been selected to develop plans for this initiative. The release says five of the states will be selected to receive additional grants of $1.6 million each in November to implement their plans over a three-year period. The end goal is enhancing education delivery for adult learners so more individuals can achieve their career aspirations.

“Building from our previous work with Breaking Through, states will get the opportunity to identify the barriers to success for their residents and design a plan that will address the unique needs of their workforce and communities,” Maria Flynn, JFF vice-president said in the press release.

“This grant opportunity will allow the colleges and their workforce development partners to expand innovative career pathway instruction,” Dan Clancy, president of the Wisconsin Technical College System said in the release. “Career pathways create a more reliable pipeline of skilled workers for Wisconsin employers and give more workers a realistic way to obtain higher-skill, higher-wage jobs.”

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From “New mobile manufacturing lab to provide experience for high school teens” — GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A new mobile manufacturing lab trailer is heading across Northeast Wisconsin in hopes of inspiring high school kids to learn the trade.

Manufacturing jobs is one of the area’s strongest job creators and markets in area, but a growing number of businesses are finding out workers don’t have the right skills.

“It’s one of the best paying industries in northeast Wisconsin,”  said Bay Area Workforce Development Director James Golembeski.

The 44-foot trailer has a dozen of the newest computerized manufacturing machines around.  It’s called the Computer Integrated Manufacturing Mobile Laboratory and visiting area high schools starting this fall.

It will provide students in tech and industrial classes with hands on training and some advanced college credit through the  Northeastern Wisconsin Technical College.

“We hope to help more young people to get into careers that provide a very good wage and job stability.”  Golembeski said.

From “Lambeau expansion to create jobs” — GREEN BAY – The Packers say the new expansion at Lambeau Field will create about 1,600 jobs during the next two years. Several hundred will be construction-related.

Many say 1,600 jobs is good news, but the construction business still has a long way to go to truly improve.

“It’s good,” said Jim Golembeski, Bay Area Workforce Development Board. “One of the sectors that was hit most cruelly by the great recession is the construction sector. We’re not building new houses, a lot of foreclosures, a lot of houses on the market. So to bring some business and get the workers moving in the construction industry sector, that’s a good thing.”

The new Lambeau construction means new jobs during the next two years, jobs that are needed.

“Since the crash in 2008 we’ve certainly seen a decline in interest in construction programs across the board, which makes sense,” said Mark Weber, Dean of Trades and Engineering Technologies at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. “Certainly people aren’t building the homes and commercial buildings that they were.”

Weber says in the last few years he’s seen about 20% fewer students training to be carpenters, masons, and electricians. However, other programs like manufacturing are growing.

“I think things like the fact that our manufacturing sector is so strong and growing, that that then will drive more jobs in the construction industry. So I think it’s good. I think it’s a good sign. I think we’re on the right track,” Weber said.

“I think we’re talking about a year to two years at least,” said Golembeski. He says a turnaround for construction is going to take time and 1,600 new jobs in the Green Bay area certainly can’t hurt.


From “WCTC to open emergency training facility” — Village of Pewaukee - A former child care center on the Waukesha County Technical College campus has been turned into a training center that aims to give students, police and other emergency responders a realistic experience – the next best thing to what can be the worst of situations.

The public got a firsthand look during a dedication and open house this week at the 20,000-square-foot training center on Morris St., across Highway 16 from the main campus.

With plenty of room to stretch out, the center is organized into four laboratories that mimic real-life situations:

  • A simulated home or apartment can be staged as a crime scene – from a burglary or drug den to a domestic abuse incident or a homicide. It can be staffed with potential victims, criminals and witnesses, where a police officer or officer-in-training must wind his way through multiple rooms to evaluate the threat and make decisions, or where evidence must be detected and analyzed.
  • An interactive technology area projects episodes on multiple walls that simulate 350 different incidents typical of what police officers encounter on the job. The trainee first enters an exertion area where he or she is put through some paces to elevate heart rate and breathing. Then the trainee must react to what he or she sees – a man advancing with a crowbar who looks ready to swing and won’t drop it on command, for example. Depending on the response, the instructor alters the scenario to prompt more decision-making.
  • A “simunition” lab presents exercises for armed officers who must wind through up to a dozen rooms. In this place, though, they use guns loaded with dummy bullets and marking cartridges similar to paintballs. Live actors – not paper targets – prompt actions and reactions from officers.
  • A command center, which is not yet fully equipped, will eventually give community leaders and their emergency responders the setting for hazardous duty. Situations ranging from tornado devastation and flooding to a school shooting or terrorist attack will be programmed so public officials and public safety employees can see the scenes on screen, make decisions accordingly and plan the response.

Brian Dorow, associate dean for the school’s criminal justice department, said the center aims to offer “holistic, scenario-based training” – where the training begins from the moment someone calls for help until the response is finished.

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From “Anxiety affects new, returning students counselors say” — The first days and weeks of college can be exciting for students — meeting new roommates, starting new classes and finding their way around campus.

Those same experiences can lead to stress, and counselors at three local colleges and universities say both campus life and relationships with family and friends can lead to anxiety for students.

Northeast Wisconsin Technical College recently adopted a new counseling model with a stronger focus on behavioral or mental health issues that get in the way of students’ academic success. St. Norbert College and the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay also have counseling departments to aid students.

College students’ stress levels continue to rise, according to the New YorkUniversity Child Study Center, which was founded in 1997 to improve the treatment of child psychiatric disorders.

A 2009 survey of 40 randomly selected four-year colleges and universities found that 85 percent of the 2,240 undergraduates interviewed experienced stress on a daily basis — up from 80 percent in 2008, according to the Child Study Center.

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From “Wisconsin colleges, universities staggering from funding losses” — Rigorous belt-tightening is becoming the mantra at college and universities in Wisconsin and nationwide as states struggle to overcome staggering deficits.

Gov. Scott Walker’s aggressive two-year budget plan will reduce the University of Wisconsin System’s budget by $250 million. UW-Superior’s share exceeded $3 million, according to State Rep. Nick Milroy.

The state’s technical college system, meanwhile, lost 30 percent of its funding, said State Sen. Bob Jauch.

“I don’t even know how they’ll keep their doors open,” Milroy said.

In northern Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College system won’t be hit quite as hard as other campuses. Still, it will lose about $1.4 million in funding, CFO Steve Decker told BusinessNorth.

“We’ve eliminated six-and-a-half positions” spread across the system’s four campuses and four outreach centers, he said, which includes some through retirements. “Without filling those positions, we’ve had to eliminate some courses at some campuses,” he said.

The funding reduction comes at a time when area employers need more welders and nurses – but the WITC system can’t educate students fast enough to meet demand.


From “Lakeshore Technical College focuses on new ophthalmic assistant program” — CLEVELAND — Barbara Dodge sees the future clearly — and it includes a lot more people who will need help seeing for themselves.

That’s why Dodge, dean of Health and Human Services at Lakeshore Technical College, is thrilled to see LTC add a program that trains tomorrow’s eye-care workers.

“The eye-care community has communicated a strong need for professionally trained staff,” Dodge said. “There are job opportunities out there, and lots of them.”

LTC’s ophthalmic assistant program, new this fall, is designed to meet an expected increase in demand for such services as the population ages. The three-semester course of study prepares graduates for work as ophthalmic assistants, helping test patients, dispensing glasses and contact lenses, and performing office-management duties.

“The purpose of the program is to improve the quality of patient care in the area,” said lead instructor Corri Beiersdorf, who practices optometry at Kisiolek Eye Center in Howards Grove.

The program is the only one of its kind in eastern Wisconsin. Currently, students looking for an ophthalmic education must travel to Madison or beyond, Dodge said. Courses will cover everything from ocular science and optical physics to medical law and ethics.

From “100 Years of Western Technical College” — LA CROSSE, Wisconsin (WXOW)- Western Technical College is celebrating 100 years of education during the 2011-2012 academic year.

Established in 1912 as an alternative to high school for continuing education, the school has grown from its first small building to serve 18,000 students in La Crosse and at 6 other locations in western Wisconsin.  Western Technical’s president Lee Rasch says that while the campus has changed dramatically since the school’s inception, the focus on continuing education has remained the same.  Rasch says that the school continues to provide programs that set up students for a career path related to their education.

Rasch adds that the demographic of the campus is changing, with the student body growing and younger students enrolling each year.  The majority of students are taking university transfer and associate of science courses.  400 students were in this area of education last year; this year the number has grown by over 50% to 640.

To celebrate both the past 100 years of Western Technical and the growing student body and spirit, centennial-themed events will be held monthly, culminating in a community celebration next summer.  The next event will be a block party called Rock the Block, featuring several music acts.  The event is free for students, faculty, and staff, as well as open to the public.

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From “New dental clinic in Lac du Flambeau up for tribal referendum” – On August 8th, the Lac du Flambeau Tribal Council approved a resolution to hold a Tribal referendum asking the membership to borrow $4.7 million, to build a new Dental Clinic- the Peter Christensen Dental Campus. The referendum will be held on August 30th.

This week an informational meeting and a public hearing were held to inform the membership about specific details involving the new facility. The meetings were held in the William Wildcat Tribal Center and presented by PCDC Director Paco Fralick and dental staff. Other speakers included Lenore Mangles (Dean of Health Occupations – Nicolet College), Joni Theobald (LDF Education Director), Dr. Darrell Schmidt – Orthodontist, and Emerson Coy- Director of Tribal Planning.

“Presently the dental clinic is located in the former gymnasium of the Tribal Center. It employs a staff of 35, which increased by 28 in the last year.” Fralick said, “ In the last year alone, the clinic delivered 3.5 times more direct services than in 2010 and earned profit with increased monthly production of four times in comparison to previous years.” The clinic has an in-house Orthodontic program, and a new Dental Implant program scheduled to begin shortly. At this rate of growth and success, a new and larger facility would be ideal. “With more space, we could offer many more services such as Periodontics so that our children do not have to be referred to Eau Claire for dental care.” Fralick said. The needs of the community have outgrown the current facility.


From “BTC students seek new future” — 

Dwight Miller Sr. wants to travel to Ireland and become a famous chef. Jessica Garvin is studying legal administration in hopes of landing a job at the Rock County Sheriff’s Department.

Both are enrolled at Blackhawk Technical College, where more than 12,000 full and part-time students resumed classes this week. Blackhawk has six campuses scattered between Beloit, Janesville and Monroe with the main location right off of Highway 51 about half way between the Beloit and Janesville.

Miller, a 57-year-old Beloit native, said he began his training in the college’s culinary arts program at the beginning of 2011. He’ll be done in another year. But before graduation, he hopes to utilize the school’s study abroad offerings to work under a professional chef in Ireland.

“It’s been tremendous,” he said of the instructors and classes.

Before Blackhawk, Miller had spent much of his working career laboring long, tough hours in area factories. He hopes his degree will help him land a job where he can express himself and enjoy work every day.

“You can be creative in this field,” he said, noting there is no age limit for a chef. “You can cook forever.”

As for Garvin, who initially did not pursue further learning after graduating from Janesville Craig High School in 2008, simply being back in an academic environment makes her happy.

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From Nicolet College: “Nicolet College Learning in Retirement Fall Kick-off Sept. 8″ — 

Northwoods retirees interested in life-long learning are invited to attend the Nicolet College Learning in Retirement Fall Kick-Off dinner and social at 4:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 8, on Nicolet’s Rhinelander campus.

The annual event marks the start of the organization’s Fall Session, which features nearly 50 different just-for-the-fun-of-it learning opportunities.

The Fall Kick-Off will start at 4:30 p.m. with social time followed at 5 p.m. with music by singer and guitarist Dave Drivas. Dinner will be at 6 p.m.

All activities will take place in the Learning Resources Center on Nicolet’s Rhinelander campus. Cost is $8 for LIR members and $10 for non-members. The dinner for the evening will be catered by the Rhinelander Café & Pub and will include roast pork with gravy, boiled red potatoes, winter squash, Waldorf salad, coffee and dessert.

Registrations are limited to the first 130 and can be mailed to Nicolet College, Learning in Retirement, Box 518, Rhinelander, WI, 54501. Checks, made out to Learning in Retirement, must be received by Friday, Sept. 2. The Nicolet campus is located one mile south of Rhinelander just off of Hwy. G.

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From the Waukesha Patch: “Waukesha County Technical College Celebrates New Protective Services Center” — A daycare center converted into an elite training ground for area criminal justice students and law enforcement was unveiled Tuesday afternoon at Waukesha County Technical College.

WCTC already has an outstanding program that graduates high caliber police officer recruits, said Brian Dorow, associate dean of the Department of Criminal Justice at the college.

“We are only here today to build on that,” Dorow said in the opening ceremony.

The approximately 20,000-square-foot facility that will house the WCTC Protective Services Center will have classes beginning in about two weeks, Dorow said, and includes a chance to increase training. The building has rooms for holistic scenario based training, including: command center operations, crime scene analysis, and tactical situations.

“Our students are amazing. They are getting jobs at record rates,” Dorow said. “They are respected. Our police chiefs are coming to hire our recruits at a record rates.

“We also want to provide them with the best, up-to-date training possible to go into the community to be our police officers, our protectors, our public servants. With the addition of this new training center, we will be able to elevate our level of training.”

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From Burning Questions: FVTC’s May talks about college’s mission” — Fox Valley Technical College has been providing education to the people of this area for many years.

A hundred of them, to be exact.

FVTC is celebrating a milestone birthday this year. It’s one that the college wants to share with the nine counties it serves through its Grand Chute campus as well as its Oshkosh campus, its five regional centers and its nine training centers.

“We officially kick off what will be a yearlong celebration,” said Susan May, FVTC’s president. “What we want to do is use many of our existing events to do a little special something to celebrate that.

“We’re also doing some special things. A very nifty centennial website has been created that people can go in and share stories that they have about their interactions with the college. We’re really encouraging people to take a look at the photos we have from back to the early 1900s and share their stories.

“While celebrating that history, we’re thinking a lot about what the future holds and how we begin to build the next century of service to our communities.”

As the guest on last week’s Newsmakers online interview show at postcrescent. com, May talked about FVTC’s mission, what makes it unique and what’s ahead for the college this year.

From Wisconsin Ag Connection: “FVTC and UW-RF working to help Ag Engineering students” – Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton and the University of Wisconsin-River Falls are teaming up to help students interested in careers in agricultural engineering technology. The 2 + 2 program will allow students who complete the prescribed curriculum at FVTC to earn an associate degree and transfer into the agricultural engineering technology program at UWRF as a junior, on track to complete a baccalaureate degree in two years.

Such an arrangement is what many have been asking for, according to project collaborators Randy Tenpas, Agriculture Faculty Department chair at FVTC and Jerry Nechville, professor emeritus in agricultural engineering technology at UWRF.

“We wanted to make it easier for students by removing the burden of navigating the on-line transfer information system to see which credits will transfer or which program offers the best deal, that is, accepts the most credits,” Tenpas said.

Dean Olson, chair of the Agricultural Engineering Technology Department at UWRF participated in the signing of the formal agreement at FVTC this month. He says the agreement should encourage more students to complete a four-year degree.

“Despite the economic downturn of the past few years, jobs in the agricultural field, particularly the engineering technology sector have remained strong, and there are more openings than we have graduates,” said Olson, who adds that recent graduates from the AET program are employed by industry leaders.

The project that resulted in this 2 + 2 agreement was funded in part by a USDA Secondary and Two-Year Postsecondary Agriculture Education Challenge Grant. For more information on the 2+2 program and careers in the agricultural engineering technology field, call 920-735-5673.


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