From “Tony Clark moves from gridiron to police beat” — People have wanted Tony Clark on their team since he was in middle school. High schools recruited him. Some 60 colleges, too. And when the NFL didn’t, the La Crosse Police Department did.

Clark, a 24-year-old Georgia native, traveled a circuitous path to becoming one of the city’s newest officers.

College instructors, professional coaches and police administrators rave about his ambition, athleticism and attitude.

“He’s got so much moral fiber it’s unbelievable,” La Crosse police officer Alan Iverson said.

Clark didn’t grow up intending to be a cop. He aimed for the NBA and the NFL – and it wasn’t a long shot.

Already an athletic standout in middle school, the young basketball star was recruited by Georgia’s Groves High School.

Clark was fast…

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From “Program teaches interpreters how to translate medical jargon with sensitivity” — Years ago, when Rodney Ramos came to the U.S. from Puerto Rico he was the first one in his family to learn English. So when he was 11 years old and his grandmother became ill, it fell to him to try interpret the doctor’s diagnosis that his grandmother had a detached uterus and possibly cancer.

It was an experience he never forgot.

“A child can’t be asked to do that,” he said, adding that he often served as his family’s interpreter.

Out of his experience as a child and then as an adult interpreter at a hospital in Racine, Ramos said he continued to be dissatisfied with the training and outcomes of interpreters trying to communicate between Spanish-speaking patients and doctors.

So after doing a lot of research and consultation, he developed a yearlong medical interpreter technician program that he has taught for the last seven years at Milwaukee Area Technical College.

Earlier this month, 18 students completed the two-semester program that teaches not just language fluency, but also medical terminology, cultural sensitivity, dialectical differences among various Spanish-speaking countries, ethics, values and nonverbal communication skills.

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From “Lincoln graduate’s culinary creation wins first place at state expo” — To say Miranda Peyketewa is a busy college student would be an understatement.

The 27-year-old alumnus of Lincoln High School in Wisconsin Rapids holds three jobs while seeking two associate degrees and two certificates in culinary arts at Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton.

And she’s hungry for more.

Peyketewa, who grew up in a family of five brothers and seven sisters, recently was rewarded for her hard work, taking first place honors in the cold plate competition during the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Expo in Milwaukee.

Entries in the category actually start out as hot dishes but are then covered with an aspic, or gelatin, and served cold. Peyketewa’s award-winning dish had multiple layers.


From WEAU-TV:  “Unemployment high, still most technical college grads find jobs” — Unemployment in Wisconsin peaked in 2009-2010, but a new report from the Wisconsin Technical College System shows a high percentage of its graduates continue to find jobs.

The Chippewa Valley Technical College attributes the students’ success to their technical skills and hands on learning experiences.

“The practicum experiences, the clinical experiences are giving those students applied experiences that prepare them for employment,” Vice President of Student Services at CVTC Margo Keys said.

After a slight job lull in 2009, more CVTC grads are finding work again. A 2010 graduate follow-up survey showed 91% of CVTC grads are employed. 86% are working in jobs related to their training and 85% work in Wisconsin.

“These institutions are funded by the local taxpayers and it’s good to know that those students are staying and working in the industry here,” Keys said.

Kim Carey and Culeen Hoehn are prime examples of successful graduates. Kim graduated in 2010 from CVTC with an accounting degree.

“They’re very on the job skill based so when you leave you’re up and running to be on the job site,” Kim Carey said.

Now she’s an accountant at Bolton Refuge House after spending six months searching for a job. “Every day I sent out thing and every day I looked through things,” Kim remembered.

Culeen’s a paralegal in Eau Claire. “I was actually doing my internship here my last semester and they hired me right on,” Culeen Hoehn said. It’s a job she says her classes thoroughly prepared her for. “It’s like you’re thrown into a law office setting without being in a law office. You’re drafting the documents. You have deadlines,” Culeen said.

Both say in these tough economic times a job is a valuable thing. They say their educations made it happen. “I feel fortunate and lucky to have a job myself, to be able to support my family and my kids,” Culeen said. “Of the students that I was in class with, all of them I know, found jobs,” Kim added.

Margo Keys with Chippewa Valley Technical College says students pay roughly $126 a credit and their programs run two years or less.

From WBAY: “Area Shipbuilders Find Strength in Numbers” — Seven shipbuilders from Marinette to Manitowoc say there’s strength in numbers. They are building more than a dozen ships for the U.S. Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, Department of Natural Resources and others. And they expect even more work in the future. As the number of contracts grow so does the work force

6,000 people in the region already make a living in the ship building industry. That number will continue to grow as the builders ramp-up to fulfill contracts. And now there’s a new plan in place to train people to do those jobs.

Marinette Marine is among those shipbuilders ramping up for its contract with the US Navy. They’ll need a lot of manpower. “So this contract alone is expected to bring 6 thousand jobs to northeast Wisconsin, and many many of those people need training,” says Karen Smits from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.


From Wausau Daily Herald:  “NTC honors record number of grads” —

Brittany Shotwell loves the classroom.

Shotwell, 20, of Tomahawk has a new associate degree in architecture from Northcentral Technical College. But instead of entering the job market, Shotwell will enter more classrooms, first at the University of Wisconsin Marathon County and then UW-Madison to obtain at least a bachelor’s degree.

“I could get a job now, but I love to learn and I’m excited to learn even more,” she said.

Shotwell was one of a record 823 graduates at NTC this year, and one of about 500 to walk across the stage at Wausau West High School this morning.

Shotwell’s mechanical design degree is one of several specialized fields that NTC President Lori Weyers said today is in demand among employers. Weyers said that bodes well for technical colleges like NTC that offer students a chance to obtain specialized knowledge beyond a high school education, but without the extra requirements of a four-year college.

From the New Richmond News: “Long road back: Non-traditional student ready for next challenge” — As a victim of the nation’s economic melt down, Jason Schutte was beginning to feel like he’d never scratch his way back into the work world.

But with his graduation from the diesel mechanic program at Chippewa Valley Technical College in Eau Claire on Friday, the New Richmond man has completed a challenging journey from unemployment to a contributing member of society again.

The journey began in the fall of 2008, when Schutte was laid off from his construction job with Halle Builders of New Richmond.


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