From leadertelegram.com: “CVTC students learn house construction on the job” – CHIPPEWA FALLS — A group of Chippewa Valley Technical College students is getting hands-on experience building job skills for their futures while helping prospective home buyers at the same time.
For the past three years CVTC has partnered with the Chippewa County Housing Authority to provide homes for low- to moderate-income residents. CVTC students help build the homes, which are sold to people who may not otherwise be able to afford them.
The homes will be listed for sale at $165,000 apiece, said Ruth Rosenow, Chippewa County Housing Authority director. Purchasers of the homes built by CVTC students must earn at least $22,600 annually but cannot make more than $36,600, she said.
“This program helps CVTC students and, at the same time, the people buying these homes,” Rosenow said.
On Tuesday Matt Burke, a 20-year-old CVTC student from Chippewa Falls, worked on a deck of one of two homes he and 13 college students have built in Chippewa Falls along Stump Lake Road on the city’s east side.
Burke had never worked in construction before signing up for the class. He’s pleased with the finished product and the skills he has learned.
“It’s nice to see what you can accomplish,” Burke said. “I just like working outside. You’re in different places, and you are always doing something different.”
Joe Dahmer, 19, a CVTC student from Menomonie who has helped construct the homes, said he has worked construction jobs with his father since he was 13. He has even traveled to Mexico to build homes as part of church mission trips.
“I really enjoy construction,” Dahmer said. “I decided to go into the program because it’s hands-on, and you can’t do that anywhere else.”
Brian Barth has taught the CVTC residential construction program for the past nine years. He said his students are quick learners who enjoy their work.
“They get the sense of accomplishment at the end of the day,” he said of students building homes.
Students are putting their hands-on construction experience to good use. Of his 14 current students, 11 have construction jobs lined up for after they graduate, Barth said.
“The construction industry, there is going to be an extreme shortage of workers in the next few years,” he said, noting the sector is recovering after several slow years.
Rosenow said her organization purchased eight lots in a neighborhood on the east side of Chippewa Falls to be used as sites for homes built by CVTC students. The two 1,300-square-foot homes built this year have identical floor plans.
The housing authority financed the $235,000 project, with home sale proceeds to go toward the housing authority’s revolving loan fund. Neither of the two homes has been purchased yet, but they would be ready for someone to purchase by Friday, Rosenow said.
April 4, 2013
From chippewa.com: “Girl Scouts honor CVTC instructor Judi Anibas” – EAU CLAIRE – When Judi Anibas overheard an inappropriate comment during one of the classes she teaches at Chippewa Valley Technical College’s (CVTC) Law Enforcement Academy, she thought it was time for a quick real-world exercise.
The 25-year veteran of the Eau Claire Police Department had all of the students privately write down the names of four women who they loved and respected and were important in their lives. Then she asked the (mostly male) class if they would ever make such a comment to or about one of those women.
“There was dead silence,” Anibas says. She went on to insist that no such comments would be heard again in that class, and she didn’t need to know who made it. The students, like the law enforcement officers they aspire to become, are to be held to the highest standards of integrity, and sensitivity to the members of the public they serve.
Upholding standards in such a way is one of the reasons the Girl Scouts of the Northwestern Great Lakes honored Anibas at its annual Women of Courage, Confidence and Character banquet Monday evening, April 1. The award honors area women who demonstrate a commitment to serving their communities and embody the Girl Scout mission of building girls of courage, confidence and character.
Anyone who knows Judi Anibas will agree that she has those qualities, and a look at her career shows her commitment to serving the community.
Originally from Milwaukee, the UW-Platteville criminal justice program graduate took the first law enforcement job offered to her, with the city of Eau Claire. She was put on a walking beat in the Water Street area, an area with taverns frequented by the local college crowd.
“You see more because you’re on foot,” she recalls. There were enough problems to deal with, including motorcycle gangs and drugs, but she also got to know the local residents and business owners and learned to listen to their concerns.
“Doing that really assisted me later when I had an inside job in crime prevention,” Anibas says.
In the following years, Anibas took on just about every duty that comes the way of a law enforcement officer. She was a patrol officer for nine years, spent four years as a detective and then went back to patrol. She learned to deal with child abuse, sexual assault, domestic violence cases and so much more, both as an officer responding to calls and as a detective investigating them.
That role of being the one catching the bad guys held much satisfaction for her, but so did the other duties she took on over the years. She became a hostage negotiator, firearms instructor, evidence technician, community policing specialist and eventually law enforcement instructor.
Anibas says she particularly liked working with community organizations and neighborhood watch groups. She came to appreciate the value of listening, and learned that what people often wanted from their police force was different from what police themselves thought of their duties.
“Wherever I worked I enjoyed myself,” she says. “But it was great to meet people who really enjoyed their community and had respect for the police.
“The cool thing is I can use all of that today when I teach community policing,” she added.
Anibas joined CVTC in 1992 as an instructor and became full time in 2006. She became Dean of the Law Enforcement and other areas, is still working as an instructor in the program, and as a safety instructor for the Business and Industry team.
She has as much enthusiasm for teaching as she does for law enforcement. “It’s inspirational, knowing that with the experience I’ve had I can give back to students.”
Anibas has been generous with her time outside of work as well. Anibas served as president of the board of directors for the Wisconsin Association of Women Police, Eau Claire Police Benevolent Association, Eau Claire Police Local 9, and Eau Claire Police Supervisors Local 39. She has been involved with Indianhead Special Olympics, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and is the current president of the Epilepsy Foundation of Western Wisconsin board of directors.
From gmtoday.com: “Growing a community of entrepreneurs” – PEWAUKEE – As a former small business owner, Russ Roberts knows what it’s like to navigate the rough waters of starting and building a business. So he’s excited to nurture entrepreneurs through Waukesha County Technical College’s Small Business Center.
Roberts, manager of the Small Business Center, said it is a unique program that is a lot like a community service for WCTC. A variety of courses are offered at low prices, such as Business Plan Development, QuickBooks Pro, Understanding Business Taxes and Law for Business Owners.
When WCTC started the center in 2001 and brought in Roberts, who had owned his own financial planning business, to develop and run it, the college had been supporting entrepreneurs for more than 40 years. The Small Business Center has gone from a few non-credited courses and some counseling in 2001 to at least 16 classes. The center also hosts networking events and offers free one-on-one counseling, the Success Mentor Program and Take a Professional to Lunch Program.
Waukesha County Chairman Paul Decker participates in the Take a Professional to Lunch program and teaches Marketing for Small Business, which will be offered April 10 to May 1.
Sharing practical information
The benefit of taking a business class at WCTC, Decker said, is that the instructors have true business experience and share lots of practical information. “It’s kind of a way to tap the brains of people who have been there,” he said.
As county chairman and the co-founder of Maverick Innovation Lab in Delafield, Decker is invested in Waukesha County’s economy, so he is pleased with how the Small Business Center contributes.
“The essence is that the more businesses that we can create that are viable and strong, and if they get going, hopefully they are going to hire people and you are going to make the economy strong,” he said.
Roberts has a similar view. He said if you get 1,000 entrepreneurs’ businesses off the ground, it’s the same as a company hiring 1,000 employees.
“Most states don’t have resources to put behind micro-entrepreneurs. Google was a couple of guys who started out of a dorm room. By the time they figured it out and were Google, (everyone) wanted to help them at that point. We never know where the next Google is going to come from,” Roberts said.
Rebecca Scarberry, owner of Becky’s Blissful Bakery, is also a believer in WCTC’s Small Business Center and started to teach How to Start a Food Business in 2012. The entrepreneur took Roberts’ FaSTart Workshop class, which is a four-hour informal workshop that provides step-by-step guidance, and received other advice and assistance from Roberts, which she said was a lifeline for her business.
The idea of teaching a class came about after her own business took off and people began to approach Scarberry seeking advice on how to start their own food businesses. Roberts suggested she teach a class, which now averages about 20 to 25 students each session.
“It’s real information,” she said of the Small Business Center. “It’s real assistance for our community for right now.”
Roberts said the center wants to “put support around” starting businesses. “Many times it’s lonely to start a business,” he said.
February 22, 2013
From bizjournals.com: “PDC’s Sisson has designs on improvement: CRE Guide – People in the News” – James Sisson joined PDC Midwest Inc. as a project architect bringing more than 16 years of experience in residential, institutional and commercial building projects in addition to specific expertise in information technology. He has taught courses in 3D modeling and is currently a part-time instructor at Waukesha County Technical College.
NEW POSITION: Project architect/CAD manager, PCD Midwest Inc., Hartland
EDUCATION: Architectural drafting and construction, Waukesha County Technical College, 1993
WHAT ATTRACTED YOU TO YOUR NEW OPPORTUNITY: “I’m excited about the growth at PDC Midwest. We have a very specific niche in our industry as an architect-led design/build firm. Clients are very loyal to the efficiencies of our delivery process and the high quality of our work. I’m thrilled to be part of a forward thinking firm.”
THOUGHTS ON YOUR POSITION: “I am looking forward to the opportunity to positively impact the firm through my architectural project involvement and by streamlining CAD processes. As CAD manager, I’ll be leading the charge for constant improvement.”
CAREER ADVICE: “Take every opportunity you can to try new things. Do what you can to become invaluable.”
FIRST JOB: Dishwasher at Country Inn hotel
PERSONAL HERO: Neil Armstrong
LAST BOOK READ: “The Hunger Games” trilogy
PERSON YOU WOULD MOST LIKE TO MEET: Albert Einstein
FAMILY: “I’ve been married since 1995 and I have two sons and one daughter, ages 13, 10 and 6.”
FAVORITE VACATION SPOT: “Walt Disney World with the kids”
MOST MEANINGFUL ACCOMPLISHMENT: “Passing all nine (Architectural Registration) exams the first time”
FAVORITE FILM: “The Fugitive” (1993)
FAVORITE MILWAUKEE RESTAURANT: “Saz’s. There’s nothing like having a beer and eating mozzarella marinara down at Summerfest.”
LIKES ABOUT MILWAUKEE: “The Milwaukee Admirals, Summerfest and the fireworks at the lakefront”
WHAT YOU MOST LIKE DOING IN YOUR FREE TIME: “Spending time with family and friends, golfing, attending car shows and watching hockey”
February 8, 2013
From Wind Systems Magazine: “Innovations in Wind Energy Education” – Lakeshore Technical College, located in Cleveland, Wisconsin, offers a two-year associate’s degree program in Wind Energy Technology.
The program consists of 70 hours of coursework and training. Upon completion of the program, graduates are equipped with the education and training required by a number of wind energy careers: including: tower climber, installation technician and O&M technician.
Lakeshore’s program mixes classroom coursework with hands-on experience — including the opportunity to learn on the campus’s four operational wind turbines. Hands-on experience is also gained through a summer field internship or combination site analysis/lab, which are requirements of the program.
Sam Schwochert is in his second year in the Wind Energy Technology program, and is expected to graduate in May.
We spoke with him about his background and aspirations.
WIND SYSTEMS: What attracted you to the Wind industry? Why did you choose LTC?
SAM SCHWOCHERT: I enrolled at LTC to specifically be a part of their Wind Energy Technology program. I chose Wind because it is an interesting, developing field where I can learn a lot, travel, and make a good living. The technology changes quickly, and I like staying “up on it.” From the research that I did on schools that had renewable energy programs, LTC was one of the best, and it was also in my backyard, so this was an easy choice. My father has a long- standing interest in Wind turbines, and he’s always encouraged me to do something that’s both challenging and would allow me to make a living.
WS: What are your expectations post-graduation with your degree from LTC?
SS: After graduation this May, I would like to start by getting a job in “Big Wind” with any of the major players. Ideally I’ll begin on a turbine maintenance crew, because I think that is the fastest way to learn as much as possible. I’d like to move to Texas if possible, and my ultimate goal is to become a Mechanical Engineer and help to design Wind turbines.
WS: What is your prior experience?
SS: I was raised in Elkhart Lake, WI; a little town about an hour North of Milwaukee. Ever since I can remember, I’ve had a love to anything that had some kind of mechanical function. I’m pretty sure this started by being around the family business, Rhine Auto, Inc. (a salvage yard), and working on my father and uncle’s stock car racing teams. We’ve won four out of the last six championships. Before starting school at LTC I worked as a landscaper and concrete laborer; I loved every minute of these jobs, but realized that that I wanted to get into something that had more of a mechanical bend to it, so here we are.
WS: Can you talk about last summer’s internship?
SS: During the summer of 2012 I interned as a Wind Turbine Tech with Kettle View Renewable Energy out of Random Lake, WI. LTC and my Wind teacher, Matt Boor, contacted us [students] weekly with internship opportunities. The boss at KVRE, Randy Faller, gave me every chance to learn everything I could, and I’m thankful for that. Other KVRE employees were also really helpful and eager to help me learn; I learned a lot about the nuts and bolts of maintenance, and LTC helped me quite a bit with the electrical side of things.
WS: Specifically, why do you like working on Wind turbines?
SS: From what I’ve experienced so far, the job is something different every day. There is so much to learn that I haven’t even touched yet, and this is really inspiring.
Lakeshore Wind Energy Technology instructor Matt Boor encourages employers, to contact him through the program should they have interests in employing LTC students and graduates, including Schwochert.
The enrollment deadline for the program is in early August. For more in- formation about Lakeshore Technical College’s Wind Energy Technology program, call 920-693-1127 or visit http://www.gotoltc.com/Programs/ windEnergy/.
January 25, 2013
From postcrescent.com: “Newsmakers Q & A Fox Valley Technical College unveils new culinary arts theater” – Culinary arts instructors at Fox Valley Technical College have a new teaching tool: the Jones Dairy Farm Culinary Theatre.
The theater is a tiered classroom with an industrial demonstration kitchen. It seats about 120 people and it’s loaded with the latest in technology and food service equipment.
Mike Ciske, FVTC’s food services director, spoke last week about the new theater on Newsmakers, The Post-Crescent’s online issues show. Here’s an edited transcript of the interview.
Can you go through some of the different cooking techniques you can practice in the theater?
We have everything from induction cooking to traditional broilers, griddles, gas stovetops, convection ovens, steamers — all industrial-grade, all restaurant-style cookware so that, when the students are in there or there are community-based events, they’ll be able to see things as they would happen in a traditional restaurant or hotel kitchen. So from that standpoint, they’ll be able to take the things they see and take them back into their labs, and be able to do them on the exact same type of equipment.
The theater does look like something off the Food Network. Can you describe the technology?
The 120 seats are tiered, and students have the advantage of three very large LED monitors that will show one of three camera feeds that are located above the cooking areas or in the back of the room. No matter where you’re seated, you’re going to get a good view. And the cameras can zoom in, so you can basically see the head of a pin on the monitors. From a cooking standpoint, you can see tails on a shrimp as if you were looking at a cookbook.
What kind of advantage will the theater give culinary arts students?
I think it does a couple of things. The popularity of the Food Network and cooking shows on TV are part of the reason we’ve had such a groundswell of new students in the culinary arts. This really brings that home for them, and engages the student who is four or five rows back and can see things and smell things. That theatricality really keeps students engaged in their education.
It also gives them the opportunity to jump behind the counter, jump behind the demo table and work on those skills — their people skills, their soft skills, their ability to share their knowledge, which is what their employers are looking for. They’re not only looking for skilled culinarians, they’re looking for people who can teach their skills as well. This is one way for them to learn that in a safe way, among their peers.
The new theater cost about $1.8 million to build, and was not part of the referendum at FVTC. How was this program funded? What part did Jones Dairy Farm have to play?
Jones is a very old, family-run business in Fort Atkinson. I had some ties with the farm, and we’ve had a long relationship with them. They were looking for a way to give back to the community — the restaurant community, the hospitality community. Through the course of two or three years, we just kept in touch and showed them what we do at Fox Valley Tech. Eventually, they came up with a challenge grant, then it was up to us to match that. That was the exciting part. It was challenging, but it allowed us to reach out to other industry partners, and get them on board with what we’re doing at the Tech.
It sounds like there was a lot of support from the restaurant industry in this area. When did they come forward?
We had over 30 donors of all different types, some of them quite large and some of them quite small. We got a tremendous amount of support from local restauranteurs, the lodging association, manufacturers. Wisconsin’s home to a ton of food and equipment manufacturers, and there were very few doors that Jeff (Igel, chair of the Culinary Arts & Hospitality Department at FVTC) and myself knocked on that we weren’t met with a very positive response. It was something we thought the school needed. We thought the students could really use it and put it to good use. The restaurant and hospitality industry are very forward-thinking that way. They’re very community involved, so that when something like this comes up, they really jump at the chance to get involved.
Will FVTC use the theater for public cooking classes?
Yes, and those classes are in the works right now. I’d imagine that a few will be offered in the spring, and I’d imagine they could range from evenings, to weekends. The theater is pretty busy during the week, with cooking classes and other FVTC uses, but I can see it being available to the community quite a bit for classes, presentations, any type of event that would need a theater. It’s very multipurpose, and I think it’s limitless what we could see in there.
January 11, 2013
From sheboyganpress.com: “Ten questions everyone should ask when choosing a college” — By Mike Lanser, president Lakeshore Technical College - Choosing a college has always been an important decision and there are more options than ever before. Working adults may be adding a multitude of online learning choices to their consideration list, while high school seniors and their parents might be thinking about campus safety and student life.
These are important considerations, but I’d like to offer you a list of 10 questions to ask when choosing your college. The answers to these questions not only affect where you start college, but where you will end — which for most people is a successful and rewarding career.
1. Is the college accredited?
Accreditation ensures that the institution adheres to rigorous standards of quality, process improvement and excellence which must be evidenced through documentation and on-site visits by the accrediting body. Lakeshore Technical College is accredited through the Higher Learning Commission, which is one of six regional institutional accreditors in the United States. To find out if the college you’re considering is accredited, visit ncahlc.org.
2. Is the education or credential you’re pursuing valued by potential employers? Ask for job placement rates.
You want to be sure your hard work and investment in college pays off. One indication that employers value the education you’re paying for is to find out about graduates’ job placement. LTC conducts a job placement survey of graduates each year. Last year, 4 out of 5 LTC grads were hired in 6 months or less following graduation.
3. What are the pass rates for students taking certification exams?
Many career-targeted programs promise that they will prepare you for licensure exams. Be sure to ask for pass rates from students who have taken the program previously. It can be good indicator of the program’s quality of instruction. At LTC, our students exceed the national average pass rates for certification exams by 15%.
4. What are the qualifications of the faculty, or better yet, can you meet them?
The quality of your learning experience is in your instructors’ hands. Do they have real-world experience in the area that they’re teaching. Are they certified instructors? Meeting your instructors is also a great way to enhance your understanding about the degree program you’re pursuing as well as your ultimate career goal. LTC instructors have worked in the fields they’re teaching and they welcome the opportunity to talk with students considering our college.
5. Is the program you’re considering offering college credit?
Many colleges offer both credit and non-credit offerings. Be sure to note whether you will earn college credit or not and whether your completion or credential earned will be recognized by potential employers.
6. What is the cost per credit?
Credits are a great way to compare apples to apples. If you’re paying $50 more for every credit, your college expense can really add up. Worse, if you’re not earning credit for the education you’re receiving you’ll want to consider how that could affect your future employment or education plans.
7. What kind of support will the college offer to help you succeed in meeting your educational and career goals?
You might have had areas in high school which challenged you, or maybe you’ve been out of school for a long time. Neither should be reasons for not pursuing your college degree, particularly if your college has services to help you be successful. LTC offers a wide range of free student success services ranging from peer tutors and support groups to academic counseling and career placement services.
8. Will you have the ability to build on your education to help you advance in your career?
Learning is life-long and many employers recognize this through employee tuition reimbursement programs. Keep this possibility in mind when you select a college because you may decide to continue your education after being on-the-job for a number of years. LTC has agreements with over 30 colleges and universities, including Silver Lake, Lakeland, UW-Oshkosh and UW-Green Bay so our graduates can continue to grow in their careers.
9. Is the college providing good value for your investment?
In addition to cost per credit comparisons, take a look at other expenses related to your education. Room & board if you’ll live on-campus, how many years it will take to complete your program, and the availability of financial aid and scholarships.
10. How long has the college been in operation?
You want your college degree, diploma or certificate to lead to job. While not a guarantee for your personal success, you can be assured a college has the commitment and resources to help you succeed when they have a proven history of doing so. LTC is proud to be celebrating a century of educating students for high-demand, local careers.
By answering these ten questions you’ll be armed with good information about the colleges you’re considering and ultimately which one will be the best fit for you to achieve your education and career goals.
November 6, 2012
From huffingtonpost.com: “Hurricane Sandy Damage Partly Caused by Climate Change Scientists Say” – CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Climate change likely made Hurricane Sandy much worse than it otherwise would have been, scientists said here yesterday at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America.
For one thing, rising sea levels set the stage for a more damaging storm surge, as Hurricane Sandy broke records with a 13.2-foot (4 meters) storm surge in New York City’s Battery Park, said Pennsylvania State University climatologist Michael Mann.
“At least 1 foot of those 13.2 feet was arguably due to sea-level rise,” he said. That’s because sea levels are 1 foot (30 centimeters) higher than they were a century ago, he continued.
Sea surface temperatures off the East Coast also contributed to the flooding. Giving rise to above-average levels of water vapor, they helped intensify the storm and produce more rain, he said.
Warmer-than-usual temperatures over Greenland also played a role, said George Stone, a researcher at Milwaukee Area Technical College.
A high-pressure system over the huge island helped to “block” the North Atlantic, pushing the hurricane toward the East Coast, according to researchers. Typically, scientists say, the jet stream instead carries hurricanes eastward into the Atlantic Ocean.
Temperatures in the Arctic have increased dramatically in recent years, scientists say. This summer, a record-breaking, Arctic sea-ice melt stretched across a larger area than any previously measured. Greenland also set records in August with massive melting of its glaciers.
“If [Sandy's] left turn was indeed due to re-distribution of air masses and position of the jet stream, and that in turn was due to Arctic warming, then we might attribute a large part of Sandy to climate change,” Stone said.
Of course, climate change did not create Hurricane Sandy, Mann said. Hurricanes and tropical storms would occur with or without global warming. But many climate models suggest that such storms will become more intense as the planet warms, he said.
Researchers at a special session on Sandy added that the effects of Hurricane Sandy may be felt for quite some time. Several researchers mentioned that the geography of New York made it more susceptible to storm surges. The long and narrow shape of the Long Island Sound, for example, helped to channel the storm surge and make it bigger. Additionally, areas like Battery Park were built from landfill and thus are low-lying and flat.
From sciencecodex.com: “Geological Society of America meeting jumps on Hurricane Sandy” – In response to the devastation caused last week by Hurricane Sandy, organizers of the Geological Society of America Annual Meeting technical sessions on rapid sea-level rise and its impacts have created a break-out discussion panel consisting of geoscience experts. The idea is to relate early findings and discuss how the changes caused by Hurricane Sandy to the U.S. East Coast tie into the scientific papers already scheduled for presentation.
Session organizers George T. Stone of Milwaukee Area Technical College, Michael E. Mann of The Pennsylvania State University, Stanley R. Riggs of East Carolina University, and Andrew M. Buddington of Spokane Community College recognized early the need to discuss the effects of Hurricane Sandy. The newly revised discussion panel will follow morning talks in room 219AB of the Charlotte Convention Center on Monday, 5 November.
Five GSA Divisions (GSA Quaternary Geology and Geomorphology; Environmental and Engineering Geology; Geology and Society; Hydrogeology; Sedimentary Geology) and GSA’s International Section have teamed up with the Association of Environmental & Engineering Geologists and the National Association of Geoscience Teachers to bring a multidisciplinary perspective to the problem.
September 17, 2012
From wnflam.com: “Experts say insurance fraud is on the rise with struggling economy” – Experts say insurance fraud is on the rise – and most insurers have become much better at catching it.
It’s a hot topic, after authorities said an Argyle man tried to kill his family and burn down his house to get $156,000 in insurance money and a fresh start in life.
Martha Lester-Mittenzwei of Madison College says insurance fraud is more common due to the shaky economy, and the need for people to look for alternative ways of getting money.
The Wisconsin Radio Network says insurance fraud is the second-most popular white collar crime after tax evasion – and one of every five adults surveyed two years ago said it’s acceptable to defraud insurance companies.
Insurance fraud takes many forms. When gas started hitting $4.00, Lester-Mittenzwei said people came up with schemes to report their vehicles stolen to collect the insurance money. That because they couldn’t sell those gas-guzzlers.
Today, Lester-Mittenzwei says most insurers have special investigating adjusters who take over when fraudulent activity is suspected. She said getting behind on a mortgage is a red flag when checking out a fraud suspect.
August 28, 2012
From morainepark.edu: “Moraine Park students place in national electricity competition” – Max Paulus of Fredonia and Istvan Biro of West Bend had a powerful performance in the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference held June 23-27 in Kansas City, Mo. Each competing with about 25 other students, Paulus placed 8th and Istvan placed 12th in the Electrical Construction Wiring and Industrial Motor Control competitions, respectively.
“The students spent time preparing prior to the competition and both seemed very confident going into the competition,” said Mark Wamsley, electricity instructor at Moraine Park. “After experiencing the national competition, we all have ideas on how to improve for next time.”
From fdlreporter.com: “Moraine Park holds first annual Distance Challenge” – Ballistas, slingshots and trebuchets filled Moraine Park Technical College’s courtyard at the first annual Distance Challenge at the Fond du Lac campus.
Students from Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah High School, the Fond du Lac Home School Association, West Bend East and West High Schools and Slinger High School formed teams and built contraptions with the goal of launching a rubber ball the greatest distance.
“We wanted a competition that required students to design, build and troubleshoot,” said Tom Roehl, Moraine Park Process Engineering Technology instructor. “We’re hoping to grow this in the future because local employers are very concerned about the skilled labor shortage, and it’s young people like this that are the future of manufacturing.”
The Fond du Lac Home School Association had a team of two sets of brothers: Isaiah and Sam LaVanway and Noah and Josiah Poss. Their giraffe-like contraption used a counterweight and two hockey sticks to make a trebuchet design. The giraffe ended up launching the rubber ball 88 feet and 2 inches.
Dawn Poss, mother of Noah and Josiah, said it was an excellent learning experience for the team.
“Through the building process, they learned endurance and patience. They had to see what wasn’t working, analyze it and learn from it,” Poss said.
Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah High School came in first by launching their object 184 feet and 2 inches. Students Ethan Hau and Jordan Kissinger’s winning device was a slingshot design. The duo used surgical tubes, two-by-fours and canvas to create “Slingshot 5,000.”
Slinger High School’s Zach Rueckl came in second at 111 feet and 4 inches. Rueckl’s “Proto II” contraption used a ballista design. Rueckl’s distance goal was to break 100 feet, which he accomplished.
Coming in third at 111 feet was a team from West Bend East and West High Schools consisting of students Nathan Groth, Austin Pelzman, Isaac Theis and Samuel Nagrocki. Their “Second Chance” resistance slingshot got its name because they scrapped their first machine when they weren’t happy with the results.
Rob Bauer, who works at Waukesha Metal Products in the tool and die area, said the competition sparked both excitement and creativity.
“We are always looking for skilled workers, and this is a great way to get students thinking about careers early. If they have an interest in this type of field, we can get them to the right career path early on,” he said.
May 24, 2012
From wdio.com: “WITC students bring technology skills to Guatemala” –
It’s a different country and a different culture, but the need for technology is the same. A school of about 70 students in Guatemala only had a few computers that weren’t exactly up to snuff, “Most of them were around ten years old. The computers were very infected with viruses,” recent WITC graduate Jacob Koval said.
So every morning for ten days, the tech savvy students fixed them up. They also donated twelve laptops, “It was a way for me to take the skills I just learned and actually put them into a real world application,” recent WITC graduate Carl Haughn said.
But their itinerary had room for fun too. During lunch, the five students took a break to see the sights, and play a few pick-up games of soccer with locals. Roles reversed in the afternoon. Students became teachers, demonstrating computer and software skills to staff. As they worked to close the digital divide, they also had to overcome a language barrier.
“We had already kind of figured out what to say to get them to do what we wanted to do when giving the lessons,” Haughn said.
And they were completely immersed, living with spanish-speaking host families, “It’s always ‘buenos dias’, or ‘buenos tardes’, they’re all very friendly,” Haughn said.
Students said it was a once in a lifetime experience, “I really enjoyed being able to use my skills to help other people out. That’s half the reason I wanted to do this program, I like helping people out,” Koval said.
And the people in Guatemala appreciated the help, and the company, “In addition to helping them with the computers, just interacting with people from somewhere else, I think they really enjoyed it,” WITC IT Network Specialist Instructor Paul Gordon said.
The students graduated just before the trip. Some are now looking for IT careers while others are looking to continue their education.
May 18, 2012
From wisn.com: “12 News goes in search of must-have apps” – MILWAUKEE - “There’s an app for that.” That saying couldn’t be more true now with thousands of apps to choose from and more coming every day.
But which ones are considered must haves? WISN 12 News’ Marianne Lyles went digging for what you need to download.
Milwaukee Area Technical College student Tiara Beasly’s iPhone is always by her side.
“Especially when I can’t use my laptop. It’s easier for me to surf the web, with and without Wi-Fi,” Beasly said.
Another MATC student, Bethany Batson, said her phone is her source for the news of the day.
“I’m studying to be a sign language interpreter, so having an awareness of what’s going on in the world, like if somebody talks about it as I’m interpreting,” Batson said.
People are hooked on mobile applications — from college students to Packers players, past and present.
Green Bay tight end Jermichael Finley uses his phone for social media.
“I like the Twitter app. I don’t download too many apps. I’m a Twitter fan,” Finley said.
Former Packers defensive end Santana Dotson needs an app to track the weather for his busy travel schedule.
“It’s 40 degrees here. So I definitely need that and I’m coming from 75 degrees in Houston,” Dotson said,
“We’re having people realize, ‘Hey, I no longer just have to use it as a phone. I can use it for all these different things,” MATC IT instructor Larry Domine said.
In the last few years, his department has included mobile application development. What was once on your computer can now be used on your phone. The industry is booming.
“Recently, Instagram was purchased by Facebook for $1 billion. Ten people with a company for an app that was only available on the Apple iPhone, and now it’s available on Android for $1 billion for 10 people. That’s how big this market is growing,” Domine said.
Like computers, games are still the most downloaded applications, so Lyles went in search of the apps that can better your life.
“I feel like apps are really what’s changed how we shop,” ShopSmart senior editor Jody Rohlena said.
ShopSmart is a Consumer Reports publication, which has researched free money-saving apps. Her favorite is one called Sale Price.
“So you find this item. It’s on sale. There’s an additional discount. You have a coupon. You put in the sales tax, and this app helps you figure out your final cost,” Rohlena said.
To get an item at the best price, download Price Grabber.
“The app is really cool because you can use it right in the store. If you see something you can find out how much other retailers are selling it for and where else you might want to buy it for less,” Rohlena said.
If you’re headed out on a trip, here’s ABC News’ travel and leisure editor’s pick.
“Another one is an app called Hotel Tonight that’s good for last-minute hotel bookings. It’s same day only, but prices up to 70 percent off,” Genevieve Brown said.
Miss America does a lot of traveling too, but she told Lyles she’s like Finley. She needs to tweet.
Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun admits he keeps it simple on his smartphone.
“I don’t even know that much about technology. I have a weather app on my phone, so I always know what the weather is like in the cities we’re playing in,” Braun said.
Lyles’ favorite app is one for your health.
“I love the Lose It app. With this app I can track how many calories I take in if I want something from the vending machine, or want to eat my almonds. Maybe even if I want a piece of chocolate. It’s just another app to help you in your every day life,” Lyles said.
From woodworkingnetwork.com: “Wood Industry Careers, Partnerships Promoted at WoodLINKs” — Wood industry members, teachers, principals, and even students across the nation gathered to build industry/education partnerships, educate teachers, and promote the wood industry as a career of choice at local WoodLINKS USA teacher in-service events over the past few months.
WoodLINKS USA sponsored nine local teacher in-service events in Arizona, Oregon, Washington, Kansas, Virginia, Wisconsin and Ohio. Michigan and Illinois in-services will be held in the spring and one in Texas during the summer of 2012.
To promote these events, an invitation was sent to every high school in each of the nine states. The in-service events were held in a variety of locations: Mesa Community College-Arizona, Madison College-Wisconsin, Theodore Roosevelt High School-Ohio, Tiger Stop-Washington, Pittsburg State University- Kansas, and the Virginia Higher Education Center-Virginia.
Topics at the in-service events covered a wide range of industry related skills and concerns including public perception of the wood industry, veneering, inexpensive project ideas for the classroom/lab, CNC equipment, LEAF-Forestry Education Curriculum, Woodwork Career Alliance of North America Skill Standards, the impact of the wood industries “carbon footprint”, trends in adhesives, economic impact of the wood industry, software programs, spray finishing, cutting tools, applied math, and project management were some of the topics covered at the various locations.
Adjunct Professor Pat Connelly shared his reason for attending the Ohio inservice, “I wanted to learn more about teaching CNC concepts with my program and I know WoodLINKS is a big proponent of that.” Several hundred teachers, administrators, principals, and students descended on the in-service events over the past couple of months. Troy Spear’s students at Theodore Roosevelt High School gave a demonstration of Cabinet Vision driving their Omni Tech CNC router.
During the Wisconsin in-service, Patrick Molzahn hosted a WCA Skill Standards Evaluator Training session. Attendees also toured Wisconsin Built, a leading manufacturer of fixtures, casegoods, and specialty products.
Doug Hague of Pittsburg State University (PSU) exposed attendees to high tech wood manufacturing equipment used in the PSU program. One of the key ingredients to hosting a relevant teacher in-service event is industry partners. Industry partners bring expertise and business understanding to the table.
The in-service at Pittsburg State University dealt with the problem of skilled worker shortage in their, “Industry’s Perception/Demand” session. Industry partners can also help change the public’s misconception of the wood industry. Mark Roberts in Arizona said, “Our goal is to change the perception of the woodworking industry by focusing on those things that hit the parent’s pocketbook, showcase highly motivated and productive students, and the relationship with our industry partners”.
The teachers need to see and hear about the latest equipment, products and processes. At the Ohio inservice, attendees were also treated to a live video conference with Travis Allen, an instructor at Northcentral Technical College in Antigo, Wisconsin. “Video conferencing with Travis was a spectacular opportunity that I wanted to share with the attendees,” stated Theodore Roosevelt instructor Troy Spear.
“While I know there are other schools out there, NTC’s facility is a great example of industry education partnerships, as it (the NTC program) was funded in part by industry. Many of my industry partners made the comment how nice it would be if there were a program was like NTC,” Spear added.
May 14, 2012
From cvtc.edu: “CVTC faculty and staff honored for excellence in education” – Chippewa Valley Technical College was well-represented at the 76th annual conference of the Wisconsin Association for Career and Technical Education held recently in Appleton.
President Bruce Barker was honored by WACTE, being chosen by the association as Wisconsin’s Outstanding Career and Technical Education Leader.
Two instructors from CVTC’s Center for Behavioral Sciences and Civic Effectiveness were honored by Chippewa Valley Association for Career and Technical Education (CVACTE) for their excellence in the classroom. Flint Thompson received the Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award and Kristi Hagen received the Outstanding New Teacher of the Year Award.
Dan Flaten, a business management instructor; Janet Goldsmith, a program assistant, and Lynne Lindbo, an admissions assistant, received Longevity Awards from WACTE for their 25 years of membership.
The award winners were recently honored at luncheon hosted by CVACTE.
WACTE is a professional organization of over 800 teachers, counselors, school administrators, teacher educators, support staff, and business/industry partners. The organization’s mission is to unite individuals involved in career and technical education, to provide professional development, to encourage leadership in the political arena, and to promote innovative change to enhance lifelong learning.
May 10, 2012
From layover.com: “PTDI Certification Benefits Programs Facing Changes in a Technological Age” – Alexandria, Virginia – As technology changes the face of the truck driving industry, programs offering courses certified by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI) are reaping the benefits, according to driver training program administrators from Wisconsin to North Carolina.
“The dynamics of individuals seeking jobs has changed,” said Robert Behnke, department chair, Commercial Vehicle Education, at Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wisc. “I see people choosing this as a career path who are more technologically savvy, but they don’t have a specific background in trucking, nor have they even grown up in the farm industry and been around big vehicles. We’re seeing folks from different backgrounds—accountants, doctors, and lawyers—coming into the industry because they’ve seen a tremendous amount of change in what they were doing and they are looking for a career change. Companies want to be assured that these people have specific truck driver training. I believe PTDI has played a part in that, because when it comes down to companies asking about training, safety is always number one.”
Kim Carsten, school director for Commercial Driver Training in West Babylon, N.Y., has also seen a change in the background of her students in recent years. “I’ve seen financial people, people from Wall Street, from the computer technology field, coming to our program,” Carsten said. “They need jobs, and they see from the advertisements that there is always a need for CDL drivers and that these are good paying jobs for entry-level drivers.”
And the fact that students are more technologically savvy only benefits programs with PTDI certification, as Carsten pointed out. “In the past three years, I have seen an increase in the number of students who know about PTDI, and much of that is a result of their Internet research and the fact that motor carriers mention PTDI on their web site,” she said. “A lot of our students do research the PTDI web site themselves and when they complete our critique at the end of our program, they say they came here because of PTDI. Students definitely have become savvy about industry standards, and about the industry in general, because of the Internet.”
Rudy Fox, director of truck driver training for Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute, which received PTDI course recertification at two locations and initial certification at a third, has noted similar interest in his programs. “Definitely, the economy has led more people to the trucking industry. Some are changing careers not by choice but because they’ve lost their jobs. We’re seeing that especially in our area in North Carolina where the industry is textiles and furniture, and that industry’s almost gone, so with unemployment here close to 10 percent, people have turned to trucking. Companies are seeking us out because they know we’re giving our students quality training. We have more recruiters now than we ever have in the past few years because of PTDI. Our reputation has grown quite well in western North Carolina; all the major trucking companies recognize our program, and one of the reasons is the PTDI certification.”
Insurance companies as well are recognizing the significance of PTDI certification. “A lot of insurance companies, from what I understand, recommend that trucking companies hire students from PTDI programs,” Fox said. “Most trucking companies are greatly influenced by insurance companies, so they can’t hire student drivers that don’t have quality training.”
Although Behnke said it may seem “unrealistic for someone to make that type of career change, especially later in life,” he believes “the industry is turning a corner with positive changes and more emphasis on the trucking industry’s image. I think there are a lot of great changes coming our way as people look at the trucking industry as more of a career than just a job.”
Carsten, who has been with Commercial Driver Training for 28 years, adds, “I definitely think that PTDI’s making a difference in the type of drivers we’re putting on the road.”
The six truck driver training programs that recently received recertification are Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute in Hudson and Hickory, N.C.; Commercial Driver Training Inc., in West Babylon, N.Y.; Delaware Technical and Community College in Georgetown, Del.; Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wisc.; and Lebanon County Career School in Lebanon, Pa. Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute in Dallas, N.C., received initial course certification.
May 8, 2012
From postcrescent.com: “Fire chief receives FVTC alumni award” — GRAND CHUTE Town of Menasha Fire Chief Keith Kiesow has been named Fox Valley Technical College’s 2012 Outstanding Alumni Award winner.
Kiesow graduated from FVTC in 1977 with a technical diploma in auto mechanics. In 1995, he received an associate degree in fire protection from the school.
He is an adjunct instructor at FVTC and serves on the fire protection program’s advisory committee.
The annual award recognizes an FVTC graduate who has demonstrated the value of technical education through career advancement, community service, continued personal and educational growth, and support of the Wisconsin Technical College System.
Kiesow will receive his award Sunday at FVTC’s spring commencement ceremony at the Kolf Sports Center in Oshkosh.
From fdlreporter.com: “Moraine Park’s Edwards-Patterson selected as NEH Summer Scholar” – Amy Edwards Patterson, a communication instructor at Moraine Park Technical College, has been selected as a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Scholar from a national applicant pool to attend one of six NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops.
NEH is a federal agency that each year supports summer study opportunities so that faculty can work in collaboration with experts in humanities disciplines.
“The NEH Landmarks workshop in Brooklyn will provide me with an excellent opportunity to explore digital pedagogy and place-based education,” said Patterson.
“Change and preservation, the major themes for the workshop, relate closely to the composition and communication fields, and I look forward to returning to Moraine Park with new ideas, assignments, and activities to share with my students.”
Patterson will participate in a workshop entitled “Along the Shore: Changing and Preserving the Landmarks of Brooklyn’s Industrial Waterfront.”
The one-week program will be held at the New York City College of Technology of the City University of New York and directed by Dr. Richard E. Hanley.
Faculty members selected to participate in the program each receive a $1,200 stipend for travel, study, and living expenses.
From wiscnews.com: “SUGAR RUSH: A Portage resident is a finalist for the American Culinary Federation’s Pastry Chef of the Year” – The cake came out of the oven with an obvious problem.
A crater had formed along the moon-like surface, putting a large dent in the masterpiece.
So like any young chef, Julia Julian fixed the problem with a ton of frosting to even out the top — creating a lake of sugary sweetness.
“There was nothing wrong with the flavor,” her mother Jackie said. “We would eat anything that was made.”
Julian was only 7 when she made her mom the birthday cake. But cooking wasn’t a passion yet.
“She was more into (raising) golden retrievers than cooking,” Jackie said.
But in a home where everything was made from scratch, the environment to learn about cooking and baking was ideal.
Almost two decades later, Julian is one of four chefs competing for the American Culinary Federation’s National Pastry Chef of the Year.
The Portage resident, who teaches at Madison College, won a regional competition April 14 in Detroit, creating a golden pineapple rum cake with passion fruit and mango sherbet.
“I didn’t expect to win. I wanted to go and experience what it would be like,” she said while taking a break from the college kitchens.
From her beginnings as a student at the college, Julian has made everything from a simple chocolate chip cookie to a 3-foot chocolate skyscraper.
But at nationals, competitors often focus on sugar work — blown sugar that becomes sweet art with a theme.
“The skill level can be very even, but (a contest) all comes down to who has the better game,” she said.
While she can create the type of desserts you see in pictures or on carts in fine restaurants, Julian still has simple sugar cravings like the rest of us.
“I tell my students, ‘I’m a baking instructor now, but I still eat a gas station doughnut,’” she said. “You’re not going to be blacklisted for stopping.”
Once a month during home schooling, Julian’s mother would pick a day for her kids to make something in the kitchen.
Home economics led to showing at the Columbia County Fair through 4-H.
But when Julian decided to go to college to study culinary arts, the idea was a bit of a surprise to her family. They knew, however, she always gives everything she has to succeed.
Julian picked a $40,000 a year school in Chicago and was accepted, paying the enrollment fees in advance.
But the realization of going to the school soon clicked.
“You can graduate with the fancy degree, but the reality of it, which most people don’t realize … you’ll be a line cook or a pastry chef for about nine or 10 dollars and hour, if you’re lucky,” the 25-year-old said.
So Julian decided to look closer to home.
“After meeting with instructors (at Madison College), that really changed my mind,” she said. “And I’m glad I went here.”
Julian wanted to be a chef who focused on elegant dishes, but a two-year wait list in the culinary program delayed that plan. She found herself on the baking side for the first year — eventually completing the culinary side, as well.
A quiet student early on in the program, Julian said she was never the one to be first to present in class.
“When I first had interest in the culinary program, or even the baking program, I wasn’t the one who said, ‘I’m going to be a line cook. I’m going to make this a career.’ I just loved baking and I loved cooking.”
Gaining experience through college and jobs at Krista’s Kitchen in Portage and a restaurant in the Dells, Julian graduated and found work at a country club in Illinois.
“I got a lot of experience, but it wasn’t quite my cup of tea,” she said. “And I was a little homesick.”
She found her way back to Madison College, finding a job in the cafeteria, which she said they jokingly refer to as No. 10 can land. But, she says, a lot of food is made from scratch.
Julian was offered a job as a culinary tutor for the school, and last fall she began teaching baking classes and theory.
Now she helps students find their way.
“Some people come in and have the passion for it and they kind of have shell shock when it’s not like cooking at home,” she said. “Because it’s not.”
Fast and furious
The first time she entered a cooking contest was four years ago as part of a college team.
“We came in last,” Julian said. “We didn’t even know how bad we were. I think everyone just congratulated us for showing up.”
Recently, however, the team took home a silver in the ACF’s hot food competition.
“It’s something that pushes me to keep learning,” Julian said. “It gets me out to see what other chefs are doing.”
Julian said she was happy just to be selected to the April regional pastry competition, which has a tough application process.
Everyone was given the same ingredients and knew that going in.
There was about an hour to plate four samples and 10 minutes to present to the judges.
“I probably practiced my dessert, completed how I was going to do it, about 10 times.”
“She always … goes above and beyond in what she does. She never just practices enough just to get by,” Jackie said.
But the national competition may be somewhat blind, with chefs not knowing the ingredients.
“I’m kind of scared spitless right now,” Julian joked.
Last year in the pastry competition, there was a plated dessert, a show piece with a fantasy theme, and a small petit four dessert.
“I’ve been thinking about all three of these things but not making anything too concrete.”
Julian said if she goes on to win the national competition in Florida, the honor would mean a lot to her, but the win would also be good for Madison College, which has never had a student or teacher win the award.
“We’ve been competing at this level for four years now,” said Paul Short, culinary program director for Madison College. “We entered this level of competition because we thought it would help our program get recognition for students who want to come here, but also companies pay attention to this kind of stuff.”
The program recently got another boost with the approval of an $8 million project to build a new home for the culinary school.
The three-story building on West Johnson Street and Wisconsin Avenue will house a dining room, demonstration kitchen and a retail bakery.
While she works part-time at the college, Julian also works for Sub-Zero and Wolf Appliances in Madison as a pastry chef.
“Now I make desserts for all the sales reps who come in,” she said.
April 25, 2012
From wrn.com: “FBI warns of Internet doomsday” – Your computer could be infected with a strain of malware without you knowing it. Traffic from computers with the trojan is redirected to malicious websites created by cyber criminals, who made millions of dollars in an online advertising scam.
Network Security Instructor at Madison College (MATC) Mike Masino says the FBI was able to track down the source of the malware, called DNS Changer. Investigators are maintaining the servers until all computers are rid of the malware. “They are gonna shut these machines down, which will stop the criminals from being able to get your information … the flip side is, if you don’t know that you’re infected, from your point of view it just looks like your machine stops working.”
That means infected computers — PCs and Macs — will no longer have access to the Internet on July 9. Masino says users can visit a website to see whether a computer is infected and how to fix it.
The FBI is estimating at least 360,000 machines are still infected in this fairly widespread cyber-attack that had affected almost twice that number. The malware also prevents anti-virus software from being updated, thereby making the computer vulnerable to more attacks.
Masino says you might be inadvertently giving your personal information to the hackers when you unknowingly use your password at a legitimate-looking fake website, as a result of the malware tricking your computer into being redirected away from your intended website. Masino says it’s always a good idea to frequently change your passwords.
The trojan first surfaced in 2007.
April 24, 2012
From bizjournals.com: “WCTC instructor wins worldwide mold maker award” – Waukesha County Technical College instructor Bob Novak has been awarded the 2012 Mold Maker of the Year by the Society of Plastics Engineers Mold Making and Mold Design Division.
The international award recognizes one industry professional who has contributed to the betterment of the mold-making industry. Last year’s award winner hailed from China.
Novak, who has been an instructor at WCTC since 1990, said he was humbled to win the award and enjoys working with students.
“It’s rewarding to see these students start with little or no experience and work themselves into a great career path,” Novak said.
Novak is a journeyman tool and die/mold maker and holds a bachelor of science degree in career technical education and training from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.
The Society of Plastics Engineers is located in Newtown, Conn., with a European office in Belgium.
April 23, 2012
From wisconsinrapidstribune.com: “Colleges seeing an increase in hiring” – Both the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Mid-State Technical College are seeing increased hiring on their campuses, mirroring recent national numbers for 2012.
A recent survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers found that hiring on college campuses is expected to increase by 10.2 percent in 2012, better than a previous estimate of 9.5 percent. In the Midwest, that number is lower, but still is expected to increase by 7.7 percent.
“I think we’re generally heading in a positive direction,” said Lorry Walters, associate director of career services at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. “I don’t tend to get excited about numbers from surveys, but I think you can see an improvement.”
UWSP uses an online system, CareerPoint, where employers can post job openings that can be seen by students and alumni. While numbers for the first third of 2012 won’t be complete until the end of April, Walters said that they have an average of just more than 500 job postings.
Walters said that participating employers at this year’s Central Wisconsin Collegiate Job Fair, held in February collaboratively with Mid-State Technical College, went up from 49 to 54 this year. Walters also said she observed there was an increase in the number of full-time positions available from those employers than the previous year.
Connie Willfahrt, vice president of student affairs and information technology at MSTC, said that a recent survey of students who graduated from the school in May 2011 indicated that 86 percent of respondents reported that they are employed. That’s a 2 percent increase from two years ago, and Willfhart said that some who responded were advancing their education and not seeking employment.
MSTC also participates in an online database, Wisconsin TechConnect, where students and graduates can view job postings by prospective employers. According to Karl Easttorp, director of communications at MSTC, full-time employer job postings in the school’s district were up 78 percent to 591, and up 56 percent statewide to 25,581 in 2011 from the previous year.
Based on postings from the start of this past week, it is projected that those numbers will increase to 763 in the district and 28,719 statewide for 2012, an increase of 130 percent and 70 percent since 2010.
“The numbers are improving and have been very encouraging,” Willfahrt said. “We constantly hear from employers about a skills gap that some applicants bring to the table, but tech grads have been highly sought after because of the training they receive.”