The MCTC News Blog

Dept. of Ed Awards MCTC Student Support Services Grants

Posted on: August 14th, 2015 by insidemctc No Comments

TRIO students at MCTC.Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) was honored to recently receive three grants to continue funding TRIO Student Support Service Programs for low-income, first-generation college students and/or students with disabilities.

The U.S. Education Department recently announced the award of $270 million to 968 institutions of higher education to provide thousands of students with academic and other support services they need to succeed in college. These grants are aimed at helping increase the number of low-income college students, first-generation students and those with disabilities to successfully complete a program of study at the postsecondary level.

MCTC received three separate awards totaling more than $766,000 for five years of funding student support services for English language learners, students with disabilities, first-generation students and students with low incomes.

“I’m very excited we were awarded these funds to provide five more years of student support services based on our past success as well as future potential,” said Dr. Jennifer Brookins-King, director of MCTC TRIO Starting Point. “This is an opportunity to have 5 more years of fun working with students to see them through to success.”

Through this federal grant, funds are awarded to institutions of higher education to provide opportunities for academic advising and development, cultural and social experiences, assistance with basic college requirements and to motivate students toward the successful completion of their postsecondary education.

“Our goal is to increase the retention, graduation and transfer rates of our students and see all of them accomplish their goals,” said Dr. Brookins-King.

Denisse Linares: On a Path to Success

Posted on: August 14th, 2015 by insidemctc No Comments

Denisse, MCTC gradWhen Denisse Linares visited MCTC this summer to interview Interim President Avelino Mills-Novoa, Deputy Education Officer for Minneapolis Public Schools Elia Bruggeman and several high school students for a story on Univision, she walked around like she knew the place. Because she did know the place—quite well.

Denisse began attending MCTC in 2006, when she dove into English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes. After several semesters, she transitioned to the Human Services program, and in the meantime served as activities coordinator for the Xicanos Latinos Unidos student club. “I was in school for a long time—first part time, then full time.”

Going to college in Minneapolis wasn’t at the top of her to-do list when Denisse was graduating high school. “My plan was to go back to Mexico,” she shared. Having moved to Minnesota when she was 12 years old, Denisse had strong ties to her family members who stayed behind, and thought for some time she could begin her adult life in the country where her parents started theirs.

But encouraged by a high school counselor, she stopped by an open house at MCTC. Liking what she saw, Denisse submitted an application. And then took the Accuplacer. And finally decided to take a leap—and stay on her path in Minnesota.

“It was a tough decision. At 18 years old, it was a very scary decision,” she said. “MCTC was so helpful when I didn’t know what to do next.”

After committing to staying in the Twin Cities, Denisse flourished. With a strong start in ESOL classes, campus involvement, a major that inspired her and compassionate instructors, she received her Associate in Arts degree in Human Services in 2011. Denisse went on and transferred to Augsburg College where she studied business management, and landed a job as an account executive with Univision.

“Deep inside I think I knew I needed to stay here, even though going back to Mexico would have been easier,” she said. “I would tell someone in my position to continue their education, and to find resources to help them. There are so many more resources now than when I was making my decision: there are scholarships, paid internships and the opportunity to go to school part-time and work in their field.”

After her interviews, Denisse had to leave in a hurry. “The Gold Cup is going on right now,” she explained. “Everyone wants to run advertisements with Univision. It’s a busy time of the year.”

2015 MCTC Graduation Ceremony

Posted on: May 8th, 2015 by insidemctc No Comments
MCTC grads

Etonam “Fanny” Okaikue-Woodi and Louis Fobb, 2013 MCTC graduates.

Please join Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) in recognizing the outstanding achievements of our graduating students on Thursday, May 21 at 7 p.m. at the Minneapolis Convention Center Auditorium.

The spring 2015 graduation ceremony will honor graduates from the summer of 2014, fall of 2014, spring of 2015 and summer of 2015, and will feature WCCO Reporter Reg Chapman as emcee for the event, MnSCU Trustee Louise Sundin and special guest Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison as the graduation speaker. A student from the graduating class will deliver a commencement address as well.

The graduation ceremony and related events are sponsored by MCTC Student Life.

Arrival time and tickets

The auditorium doors will open at 6 p.m. Space is limited and you will need a ticket to attend this event. Each graduate will pick up a limited number of tickets and are responsible for ensuring you have a ticket to attend the Ceremony. If we have any additional tickets after graduates pick up their tickets, we will distribute them outside of the Auditorium on a first-come, first-distributed basis.


The cost of parking at most ramps near the convention center is approximately $10. You could also park in the MCTC parking ramp for $5 (or $2.50 with a prepaid parking card) and walk; the convention center is less than a half mile from the MCTC campus.

Accommodations for people with disabilities

If you will require accommodation to make it possible to attend the Graduation Ceremony (such as wheelchair access, special seating, or a sign language interpreter), or if you need the program in an alternative format please contact the Disability Services Office at 612-659-6730.

Graduation photos

Family and guests are welcome to take photos with graduates in the lobby before or after commencement. You may also take some photos or video from your seat inside the auditorium.

GradImages® will photograph graduates receiving their diploma covers during the ceremony. Proofs will be mailed to graduates within the two weeks following the Ceremony, at which time the graduate can purchase prints.

Cell phones and electronics

In order for all guests to enjoy Commencement without distraction, we ask that you turn off the ringers and sounds on your cell phones and other electronics during the Graduation Ceremony. We appreciate your thoughtfulness in this matter.

Current students

You can find information about preparing for graduation on the MCTC Intranet:

Transportation Security Administration and MCTC Honor Program Graduates

Posted on: June 8th, 2011 by insidemctc No Comments

On Monday, June 6, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) and Minneapolis Community and Technical College honored 49 local TSA employees who have earned a TSA Homeland Security certificate or associate degree at MCTC.

Mike McGee, dean of Academic Affairs at MCTC stated, “The MCTC/MSP program started as a pilot program among nine other colleges nationally. Based in part on the success of the MCTC program, which resulted in the largest completion rate of the nine colleges, a decision was made by Washington D.C. officials to continue to provide tuition assistance through associates degree programs for TSA officers attending MCTC.

In 2009, the TSA chose MCTC to provide a higher education curriculum for airport security officers and other TSA personnel. The first enrollees began classes on September 21, 2009.

Senator Klobuchar to Speak at MCTC Commencement Ceremony about Role of Community Colleges in Global Economy on May 14

Posted on: May 12th, 2011 by insidemctc No Comments

Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC) is proud to announce that Senator Amy Klobuchar will speak at the 2011 Commencement Ceremony for MCTC graduates on May 14 at the Minneapolis Convention Center. Senator Klobuchar plans to speak about the challenge of revitalizing America’s innovative edge to compete and succeed in the global economy, and the essential role that community and technical colleges have in meeting this challenge. The ceremony begins at 11 a.m. and the Senator is expected to address graduates shortly thereafter.

Last year, President Obama announced that he wanted community colleges to help produce 8 million more graduates by 2020. MCTC is graduating approximately 400 students this year toward that goal.

MCTC students get an excellent education without taking on a lot of debt and gain skills needed in today’s workplaces. The College serves students who were the first in their family to attend college, those changing careers or looking for learn new skills to advance in their careers and students interested in earning a four-year degree.

The College partners with business and community leaders and non-profit organizations to develop innovative programs that prepare students for today’s and tomorrow’s jobs. MCTC is a strong partner with the City of Minneapolis and the Mayor’s Office on workforce development and job training initiatives designed to get people back to work. The College’s strong allied health programs in nursing, electroneurodiagnostic technology, polysomnographic technology and other emerging healthcare fields are helping the state of Minnesota remain a healthcare leader.

MCTC also works with industry leaders to produce top graduates in the trades, career programs and liberal arts fields. Ninety-nine percent of machine tool technologies graduates are placed in jobs. College prepares students for the latest jobs in biotechnology, chemistry and biology. Unique programs in computer forensics, apparel technologies, restaurant management, world languages, business, liberal arts and sciences, law enforcement and human services help meet the education and workforce challenges facing the country.