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Marc Jensen: Connecting Creatively

Posted on: July 16th, 2015 by insidemctc No Comments

Marc Jensen, MCTC“I grew up on a farm close to nature. Instead of going to Disneyworld, we went camping and fossil hunting,” said Marc Jensen, the newest member of the MCTC Foundation Board of Directors. “But when my dad brought home an Apple IIe from the school he worked at, that was the spark that got me going down the technology path. That was my Pandora’s Box.”

Marc uses that spark in his current work at space150, where he connects clients to forward-thinking technology. Prior to joining space150, Marc used his ability to connect people to difficult concepts by using video games. “I taught videogame history, culture and creation at MCAD for 10 years,” he said. “Math is difficult for many people, but math can also be visual. The way I found to get visual or artistic types of folks interested in math is through video games.”

When Marc was approached by the MCTC Foundation to become a member of its board of directors, the Foundation was searching for someone who could connect new MCTC graduates with employers in the community.

“Things in the tech world move really fast, and it’s hard for a curriculum to hit a moving target,” he said. “As the world moves forward, the tools that used to work are no longer the best, or there are newer and better ways to do things. You’re at a disadvantage if you don’t know those things.”

In his role at space150, Marc has connected with companies like 3M, Buffalo Wild Wings, Electronic Arts and Nike. His career has included console and PC game development, as well as 3D animation and special effects, motion capture, animation and facial animation systems. For Marc, change is the norm. “My career has been about making creative uses of technology.”

MCTC was the perfect place to utilize Marc’s connection of creativity and outlet. “The diverse experience the college offers is amazing,” he said. “Having different points of view makes your business more successful. When everyone’s better, society is better. The more creatively we think, the less likely we are to be replaced by a machine.”

Minnesota Legislation Funds Nursing Support

Posted on: June 25th, 2015 by marketingworkstudy No Comments
Zander-200

Rep. Karen Clark and David Zander

Following the conclusion of the 2015 Minnesota state legislative session, Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) was honored to celebrate the passage of a higher education bill awarding $70,000 to MCTC, Century College and two yet-to-be-determined MnSCU colleges for the implementation of the Kathleen McCullough Zander Success in Nursing Program.

Kathleen (Kathy) McCullough Zander, late MCTC Nursing instructor, developed a 16-unit curriculum to mentor and tutor foreign-born Nursing students. The legislative funding follows the recent announcement of a strengthened Nursing articulation agreement with Augsburg College, as well as a recent remodel and launch of expanded, state-of-the-art Nursing classroom space.

“I am a nurse and a survivor of cancer myself,” said Minnesota Rep. Karen Clark, who helped author and advocate for the legislation. “This legislation was an act of love, and will leave an incredible legacy.”

Friends and family of Kathy and her husband David, as well as many MCTC Nursing faculty, gathered to celebrate the gift on June 24, Kathy’s birthday.

“This legislation is very timely,” said MCTC Interim President Avelino Mills-Novoa. “At our Nursing pinning ceremony this spring, we determined that 60 percent of the graduating class was foreign-born. The very program that you worked so hard for is one that has been deeply impactful for the MCTC community.”

Kathy is survived by her husband David Zander, who advocated most passionately for the passage of the legislation. “For me this is just a small first step in what needs to be done,” he said.

MCTC Foundation Receives $1 Million Gift

Posted on: May 14th, 2015 by marketingworkstudy No Comments
Carolyn and Sanders Ackerberg

Carolyn and Sanders Ackerberg

The MCTC Foundation has received a generous, $1 million gift from Carolyn Ackerberg in memory of her late husband Sanders (Sandy) Ackerberg, who served and led the MCTC Foundation and helped lay the groundwork for what MCTC is today.

Among the largest gifts the Foundation has received, this donation by the Ackerbergs will be used to fund scholarships and provide resources for students in need. In gratitude, the College will name its Science Center for the Ackerbergs.

“This gift will provide resources, inspiration and momentum for our College and our students,” said Avelino Mills-Novoa, interim president of MCTC. “We are grateful to Carolyn and Sandy for their belief in our students.”

Sandy’s legacy of service and achievement began during his time as a B-24 pilot in the 7th Army Air Corps during World War II serving in the southwest Pacific. After his return home, Sandy enrolled at the University of Minnesota, receiving a degree in architecture in 1949, and began his long and career as an architect, real estate developer and leader of the MCTC Foundation.

“His most enduring personal quality remains his genuine interest in, and concern for, all people he met,” said Carolyn. “He had a unique ability to connect with students, and enjoyed speaking and learning from the students he met at MCTC.”

Sandy passed away in 2009, and Carolyn has kept Sandy’s passion for MCTC students alive. A man of many talents, he served as president of the Foundation alongside historical community leaders Wheelock Whitney, Lou Nanne, Becky Malkerson and David Nasby.

“Sandy was a true gentleman, with a genuine interest and concern for the students of MCTC,” said Carolyn. “I know in my heart this is what he would like to do.”

“We express deep gratitude to the Ackerbergs,” said Reede Webster, executive director of the MCTC Foundation. “Their support will mean scholarships and supports for students who otherwise would not have the opportunity to pursue a college degree.

Spirit and Soul: A Celebration of Black Performance Styles

Posted on: March 31st, 2015 by marketingworkstudy No Comments

Spirit and Soul photoThe Basilica of Saint Mary and Minneapolis Community and Technical College present Spirit and Soul, A Celebration of Black Performance Styles. This evening of dance, song, and poetry will bring to you performance styles of the Caribbean, West Africa, Brazil, and the United States. The night will be a festive exploration of how elements of African musical traditions transformed, or blended, with European music, catalyzing new forms of expression from capoeira to rock and roll.

When: Friday April 17, 7–9 p.m.

Where: Basilica of Saint Mary
1600 Hennepin Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55403

This event is FREE and open to the public! Parking is also free in the MCTC ramp. For more information, contact Sandy Jacobson at sandra.jacobson@minneapolis.edu or 612-659-6316.

Artwork for this event was created by MCTC student Edward Johnson, featured in this fall 2014 City College News story.

MCTC Scholarship Recipients and Donors Honored

Posted on: November 4th, 2014 by marketingworkstudy No Comments

ScholarshipBreakfast2014-200The MCTC Foundation held its 11th annual Scholarship Breakfast for students who received Foundation scholarships in the last year and the donors who made those scholarships possible. More than 200 students applied for these scholarships, and this year the Foundation will grant more than $300,000 in scholarships. The MCTC Foundation has distributed more than $2.5 million in the last five years in grants, Power of YOU scholarships and emergency funding.

“I am honored to have been involved with the College for as long as I have,” said MCTC Board President Harry Davis, Jr. “When I attended this school in the 60s—back then, it was known as Metropolitan State Junior College—this was a nontraditional school for nontraditional students.” Davis took classes taught by one of the College’s most foundational contributors: Earl Bowman. “Earl Bowman was the first African-American teacher I’d ever had,” he said.

Five scholarship recipients spoke at the event. “When you’re a father, a grandfather and a college student all at the same time, you may feel like you have many reasons to drop out of school,” said MCTC Liberal Arts student and Nadia and Louis Najarro Smith Scholarship recipient Juan Morales. “Thanks to the trust of Nadia and Louis, I’ll be able to succeed.”

MCTC students learn about scholarship opportunities from their instructors, advisors, the Foundation website and friends. The Scholarship Breakfast allows students to meet some scholarship funders—like Deb Pomroy, instructor of English as a Second or Other Language courses at MCTC since 1991. Deb and her family fund the Srok Scholarship, named for her grandfather who didn’t speak any English when he immigrated to the U.S. “It’s never a mistake to invest in people,” said Deb. Read her story on page 9 of The Groove magazine.

“I really appreciate that you believed in me,” said Nardos Legamo, MCTC Nursing student, former ESOL student and recipient of the Srok Scholarship.

“This is my favorite, and most inspiring, event of the year,” said Reede Webster, executive director of the MCTC Foundation. “These scholarships were part of MnSCU’s comprehensive Access to Excellence Scholarship Campaign, which has raised over $17 million so far for student scholarships and is 74 percent ahead of its first year goal of $10 million.”

“The theme I’m seeing in this year’s Scholarship Breakfast is generosity,” said MCTC Interim President Avelino Mills-Novoa. “As we approach Thanksgiving and take this opportunity to be grateful, we also want to thank the donors who generously made these scholarships available.”

Morales used Minnesota winters to describe how helpful a scholarship can be: “If there’s a big snowstorm and you have to clear your driveway before you can get somewhere, sometimes all you have is a tiny little shovel, and it’s really difficult to get anywhere,” he said. “But if someone comes by with a big truck and plows your driveway for you, it’s so much easier to keep moving forward with your life.”

The MCTC Foundation will accept scholarship applications for the spring 2015 semester until Nov. 26. Click here to explore scholarship options.

Photo, from left to right: MCTC Board President Harry Davis, Jr., Kopp Presidential Scholar Nathan Place, Kopp Presidential Scholar Frances Emberly, Srok Memorial Scholar Nardos Legamo, Najarro Smith Dream Act Scholar Juan Morales, Power of YOU Scholar Antonio Hunt and Interim MCTC President Avelino Mills-Novoa.