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St. Paul Rondo Neighborhood Honors MCTC Law Enforcement Faculty Debbie Montgomery

Posted on: November 19th, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments
Debbie Montgomery

Debbie Montgomery holds a copy of a 1976 Pioneer Press story about her involvement on the St. Paul Police Force.

MCTC Law Enforcement Faculty Debbie Montgomery received a unique honor this week: The City of St. Paul named a stretch of Marshall Avenue, in the city’s historic Rondo neighborhood, after her. Read the story from the Pioneer Press here.

St. Paul honors Debbie Montgomery with street segment

The segment of Marshall Avenue between Lexington Parkway and Western Avenue soon will bear the name of a former St. Paul City Council member who grew up during the civil rights era and became the first female officer in the St. Paul Police Department.

On Wednesday, the council voted to approve a resolution co-naming the avenue after Debbie Gilbreath Montgomery. Council member Dai Thao, who sponsored the resolution, called her a “true pioneer of courage and leadership for the city of St. Paul.”

Montgomery, who attended the vote, expressed gratitude for the new street name in her honor and encouraged city leaders to embrace the growing diversity within St. Paul as important decisions are made.

“Our city is changing,” Montgomery told the council. “We have to be open. … We have to make sure that everyone is at the table — at the table when the initial discussions happen, not afterward.”

According to Dai Thao’s resolution, Montgomery was born in St. Paul’s historically black Rondo neighborhood in 1946, 12 years before the construction of Interstate 94 razed her home and cleaved the neighborhood in two.

In the late 1950s, she served as president of the St. Paul NAACP youth group, and at age 17 became the youngest person ever elected to the NAACP’s national board of directors.

The position allowed her an opportunity to rub elbows with Vice President Hubert Humphrey and march on Washington, D.C., in 1963 with civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

Two years later, she participated in a historic civil rights march from Selma, Ala., to Montgomery, Ala.

Montgomery, who graduated from St. Paul’s Central High School, went on to earn two master’s degrees in urban planning and police administration. She became the first female police officer in the St. Paul Police Department in 1975, rising up the ranks from sergeant to senior commander.

Council member Dan Bostrom, a former St. Paul police sergeant, recalled serving alongside Montgomery on the force. He told the council not to be fooled by her calm demeanor, and remembered a time when she knocked a belligerent suspect unconscious.

“When you run into a bunch of drunks during St. Patrick’s Day, yeah, we’re talking about Jekyll and Hyde here,” said Bostrom, to widespread laughter.

Montgomery served as assistant commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety from 1991 to 1998 and was elected to the Ward 1 seat on the city council in 2004. She was unseated by Melvin Carter in the November 2007 election.

In 2008, she became an adjunct professor at Minneapolis Community and Technical College.

Montgomery was one of seven candidates who ran for the open Ward 1 seat on the council in November 2013. She finished in fourth place, with Dai Thao winning the seat.

MCTC Names Patrick Troup Interim VP of Student Affairs

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

patricktroup-200Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) announces the appointment of Patrick Troup as its interim vice president of student affairs. Troup comes to the college from the University of Minnesota, where he has held the roles of director of retention initiatives in the Office for Equity and Diversity, director of the Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence and associate director of the Multicultural Center for Academic Programs since 2002. Troup will begin his duties at MCTC Nov. 3.

In his new role at MCTC, Troup will oversee the planning, operation and administration of the College’s student affairs division. He will lead efforts to strengthen college readiness among entering students and transform internal support, resources and processes that lead to student retention and graduation. Troup led similar efforts during his time at the U of M, and has published and presented nationally on issues related to support services for students of color, peer-assisted learning and all-male living-learning communities of color.

As the interim vice president of student affairs, Troup will provide vision, leadership and strategic direction for all student affairs functions including recruitment, admissions, orientation, student life, multicultural student services, services for students with disabilities, career and job placement services, and TRIO programs at one of the state’s largest, urban two-year colleges. “I am delighted that Patrick has agreed to join our College to lead efforts in providing the care and support that our students need to achieve their dreams,” said Avelino Mills-Novoa, interim president. “He brings the long-range planning and enrollment management skills that are needed to lead this division of the College.”

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to join this wonderful institution,” said Troup. “Much of my education and professional life has been dedicated to access, equity and multiculturalism, as well as student development within higher education. Higher education is the primary pathway for individuals to participate fully in our society and empowers individuals who historically have been relegated to the margins. I am looking forward to collaborating with everyone to promote the success and development of MCTC students.”

Dr. Avelino Mills-Novoa Named Interim President of MCTC

Posted on: June 18th, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments

Dr. Avelino Mills-NovoaThe Board of Trustees of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) named Avelino Mills-Novoa to serve as the interim president for Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC).

“Dr. Mills-Novoa understands the challenges and opportunities that MCTC faces and I deeply appreciate his willingness to serve as interim president,” said Chancellor Steven Rosenstone. “He will work collaboratively with students, faculty, staff, and community leaders to address the college’s challenges and position MCTC in the search for its next president.”

Mills-Novoa is vice president of Student Affairs at MCTC and professor emeritus of Community Psychology at St. Cloud State University. He served as assistant dean and director of student services for the General College, as interim Dean of Undergraduate Studies, and as interim associate vice president in multicultural and academic affairs at the University of Minnesota. He has devoted his career in higher education to working toward educational equity and social justice for multicultural populations, including access and opportunity for persons who are socially and economically underrepresented in higher education; gender equity; gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender (GLBT) rights and opportunity; and access and opportunity for people living with disabilities. A first-generation college graduate, he holds a bachelor’s in Latin American studies, and a masters and a doctorate in educational psychology from the University of Minnesota.

Mills-Novoa succeeds Phil Davis who has served as president since 1998 and was recently appointed the associate vice chancellor serving as the managing director of the MnSCU Campus Service Cooperative.

Chancellor Rosenstone to Visit MCTC June 4

Posted on: June 3rd, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments

Chancellor Steven Rosenstone will visit MCTC to discuss the presidential transition with students, faculty, staff and community leaders. The chancellor would like to hear from you about the qualities critical to the success of the interim president and the continued success of MCTC.

Presidential Transition Open Forums with Chancellor Rosenstone
Wednesday, June 4
Minneapolis Community and Technical College
Helland Center Multi-purpose Room (H.1002)

3–3:30 p.m.     Students
3:30–4 p.m.     Staff
4–4:30 p.m.     Faculty
4:30–5 p.m.     External Community

If you are unable to attend this session, the Chancellor welcomes comments to be sent to him at chancellor@so.mnscu.edu.

Read the full letter from Chancellor Rosenstone.

College Welcomes New Vice President Appointments

Posted on: May 29th, 2014 by insidemctc No Comments

Following a spring search committee’s efforts, Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) has announced two new members of its leadership team.

Avelino Mills-Novoa, vice president of student affairsDr. Avelino Mills-Novoa will join MCTC as vice president of student affairs. Dr. Mills-Novoa will lead efforts to promote the success of the College’s students and employees and improve graduation rates. Working in collaboration with Dr. Whitney Harris and the College’s Human Resources department, Avelino will also promote educational equity and lead efforts to close the gap in educational attainment.

Dr. Mills-Novoa comes to the College experienced in working with students, faculty and staff to promote student success. Dr. Mills-Novoa came to Minnesota as a refugee from Cuba and became the first member of his family to attend college. He started his education at the University of Minnesota’s General College and went on to earn a master’s degree and doctorate in Educational Psychology with an emphasis in counseling from the University of Minnesota’s College of Education and Human Development. He has served as assistant dean and director of student services for the U of M’s General College and, on an interim basis, as Associate Vice President in Multicultural and Academic Affairs. He also served as the interim dean of undergraduate studies at St. Cloud State University, and is currently a professor emeritus of Community Psychology. “Dr. Mills-Novoa’s personal and professional background make him a wonderful role model and inspiration for our students,” said MCTC President Phil Davis.

Gail O'Kane, vice president of academic affairsDr. Gail O’Kane will serve as vice president of academic affairs. Dr. O’Kane is returning to the College leadership team after serving for the last year as interim president of Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC). She will lead the development, administration and evaluation of the College’s academic programs, including accreditation and assessment processes. Working with the faculty, Dr. O’Kane will be responsible for ensuring the College’s curriculum fulfills the needs of students and is structured in ways that provide clear pathways to completion. She will lead the development of MCTC’s academic master plan and guide the College’s response to the academic program review.

Prior to her interim presidency at RCTC, Dr. O’Kane served as associate vice president of strategy, planning and accountability. Before joining MCTC, she served as system director for education-industry partnerships for the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (MnSCU) system. She graduated magna cum laude from Boston College with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and earned a doctorate in neuroscience from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “Dr. O’Kane comes with the experience of running the daily operation of a large, comprehensive college like MCTC and has keen insights into the practices that lead to success for students elsewhere in the country,” said Davis.

“The College has the unique opportunity to benefit from the complementary talents of these two exceptional leaders,” said Davis. “We are honored to have them with us.”