The Starting Point

An MCTC blog

Meet the Tutors!

Posted on: September 30th, 2016 by francie No Comments

Fall Semester is well underway. Some of you have already checked out the TRIO Starting Point Tutoring Center, but for those of you who haven’t, meet our tutors! We’re open Monday-Thursday 9-6, and Friday 9-3. Log onto TutorTrac to make, or cancel, appointments.


maryMary grew up in Minnesota and then left for awhile to attend Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin.  She taught English after college in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and then in Istanbul, Turkey.  After living in Austria for a year and doing some traveling around Europe, she returned to Minneapolis where she’s been happy to be since 1972.  She had a number of interesting jobs with Head Start and Prudential before going back to teaching in the mid-80’s. She has a Master’s in Teaching from St. Thomas University in St. Paul.  Traveling has always been a passion with New Zealand and China being favorite trips.  She has a big family living all over the country, a son in Vermont and a daughter in California, so the traveling continues, especially to visit her four dear grandchildren

“By trade” she’s an English teacher, having taught English through Humanities classes (English + social studies + the arts) for over 20 years in the Minneapolis Public Schools. Mary likes the challenge of tutoring almost anything however, with the exception of math and science courses, although the environmental and ecofeminism classes are new favorites.

 

CoralCoral has been tutoring with Starting Point since Fall 2011.  She has also participated in creating and giving disability, TESOL, and Understanding the Assignment workshops with other tutors at MCTC.  She has extensive experience tutoring and teaching English as a Second Language, in St. Cloud, the Twin Cities, and in Shantou, China.  Coral’s education includes a Bachelor’s degree in Community Development and a Master’s degree in Teaching English as a Second Language, both from St. Cloud State University. Her thesis focuses on the educational systems of Native Americans and the experiences of Native American English language learners.  She is also knowledgeable about social science/human services subjects and world religions as well as any subject that mainly involves English.

She lives in a global neighborhood.  She is a proponent of eating healthy and living a balanced life.  Coral enjoys the arts of all kinds, people’s pets, traveling, and nature.  She writes intercultural poetry and involves herself in intercultural moral based discussions, trainings, and prayer gatherings.  Coral also has a knowledge of community resources and disability issues.  In her spare time she volunteers at different Twin Cities nonprofits.

 

MadeleineMadeleine is a chemistry and mathematics tutor at Starting Point. She has a Bachelor’s in History and Sustainability from the University of King’s College, Canada. She is currently working on her Master’s degree in Elementary Education from Augsburg College. Though she went to college in Canada, she grew up in Minneapolis. She enjoys traveling, cooking, biking, and the occasional Netflix binge.

 

 

 

 

NelahNelah is a Mathematics tutor at Starting Point. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from The University of Madras, India and her Master’s degree in Mathematics Education from The University of Minnesota. She has lived in the USA for the last 15 years and has gained teaching experience working with diverse students in the inner city, and the East African Charter High School settings. Nelah also helps with tutoring Chemistry. She enjoys spending time with her family and learning traditional classical music.

 

 

 

AnnAnn is a Twin Cities native and was a longtime faculty member at MCTC.  She specialized in teaching students how to handle textbooks they found difficult to read.  Multilingual, Ann also taught ESL at MCTC.  She really knows grammar as it applies to college comp and paper assignments.

Ann truly believes that the achievement gap doesn’t have to exist.  Ann retired to meet the changing needs of her family members, but has badly missed the excitement of watching students learn.  Her most recent college experience as a student is an online hip hop class she took from Oregon State University.

 

 

 

ShondaShonda is a Mathematics tutor at TRIO Starting Point.  She graduated from Dunwoody College in 2013 with an associate’s degree in Mechanical Drafting, after having taken classes in machine tool technology, and some computer science and information technology.  They are originally from Maryland, having moved to Minnesota in 2010.  They enjoy wood and metal crafts, traveling the outdoors, and learning about computers, emerging scientific discoveries, and astrodynamics.

 

 

 

 

WayneWayne has tutored math and science since 2008:  four years at Normandale Community College and since 2010 with TRIO Starting Point. Wayne graduated summa cum laude from the University of St. Thomas with a BA in math where he later earned his Master of Science in software engineering. Wayne retired in 2008 after twenty years working in Information Technology for Fortune 500 companies as a programmer, team leader, staff manager and senior project manager. While Wayne worked at St. Paul Companies, he was nominated for the Chairman’s Award 7 out of his 10 years. He has also been recognized as Alumnus of the Year from Normandale Community College. Wayne is currently putting the final touches on a novel that he hopes to get published in 2015.

 

 

LenLen is a volunteer tutor in math, physics and engineering. Len is originally from Buffalo, New York and earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MIT, in Cambridge, MA.  After graduation, he worked in a variety of engineering disciplines: aircraft inertial navigation systems, analog device design for missile and sonobouy applications, optical character recognition, and computer design and development.  Tasks included proposal writing and presentations to US Government agencies, electronic design and development, technical program management, and manufacturing and field support.  Senior management positions at CDC (Control Data Corporation) included Director of Engineering, OCR Division, General Manager of Washington Area Operations, and General Manager/Director of Engineering of Super Computer Engineering.

Hobbies include Toastmasters (served as District Six Governor, director of 250 plus club across Minnesota and southwestern Ontario, Canada), designated as Distinguished Toastmaster (the highest designation in Toastmasters), parliamentary procedure (served on Board of Directors of the Minnesota State Association of Parliamentarians), SeniorNet instructor for computer image processing, genealogy, and PowerPoint (served as chairman of Board of Directors during the founding stages of the program), sailing (sailed the Pacific from San Francisco to Sea of Cortes, to Hawaii and back to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, two of us on a 46 ft. sailboat), genealogy (have a data base of over 40,000 relatives of myself and my wife), photography, gardening and landscape design.

As a first generation college graduate in my family, mentors made a big difference in my life, helping me earn scholarships to both high school and college.  I feel programs such as Starting Point are critical to the students they serve and deserve our support

Interesting facts:

One of my patents was featured in an article with a picture in the New York Times. One of the computers developed under my direction was recognized as the fastest in the world in the Guinness Book of Records. Have lived in: Buffalo, NY, Boston, MA, Long Island, NY, Champaign, IL, Rockville, MD, and Plymouth, MN. Have had significant business dealings in England, Germany, Amsterdam, and Japan.

 

KeithKeith is a mathematics major at MCTC. He is originally from Kenosha, WI and moved to the Twin Cities area in 2010. Keith is an artist and has worked professionally as a designer and muralist. He loves creativity, and enjoys opportunities to exercise his own ability and take in the creativity of others. He values knowledge, enjoys the learning process, and wishes to see everyone succeed in their studies. Keith started at MCTC with almost no mathematical knowledge and is currently taking Calculus 1. He is beginning his third year at this institution and, after achieving his Associate’s Degree, intends to continue on to his Bachelor’s Degree, Master’s Degree, and Ph.D. He is a firm believer that anyone can learn anything they desire; that no one is intrinsically more intelligent than anyone else, and that any problem encountered in the process of learning can be overcome. Through working with other students in a diverse environment, he sees tutoring as an opportunity to both contribute to the MCTC community and gain new and different perspectives on what he has learned. Keith tutors Math 60, 70, 80, Pre-calculus 1, pre-calculus 2, Astronomy, Environmental Science, and Ethics.

 

GinaGina is a Business Management Major at MCTC, she started classes in the Fall of 2015 with the goal of finishing an Associated Degree by Spring of 2017. After, she hopes to transfer to a 4-year University to obtain a Bachelor’s, Master’s, and also hopefully a PhD in Economics. Gina is originally from Mexico and has lived in Minnesota since she was eight years old. She previously worked at UPS, she can give you tips on how to lift a package properly in order to avoid injury.  She loves the outdoors, hiking, and just walking around town finding new places to explore. Another one of her hobbies is fish-keeping, currently she has a 30 gallon tank, a 10 gallon tank, and a breeder tank for her live bearing Gold dust Molly fish fry. Her two sisters and nephew help take care of her mollies, apple snail, and an elderly cat. Gina loves to learn about anything and everything, give her a topic and she will learn everything there is to know about it by the end of the week. Gina currently tutors Reading, Writing, and Business.

 

KhadroKhadro, or Kay, is a second year college student who grew up in San Diego, California and moved to Minnesota approximately five years ago. Her major is currently undecided although she is thinking about law, English, and journalism. Khadro’s hobbies include writing, gardening, and meditating. She also loves to read poetry and books. Her favorite authors include Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and occasionally Rumi’s poetry. Khadro tutors reading, writing, and creative writing.

 

 

 

Saul was born in Madison, WI, Sauloriginally but has lived in Minneapolis for four years. He’s been going to MCTC for about three years or so now.  Saul graduated from high school in 2007 and took about six years to figure out what he was passionate about. If he’d gone to college right out of high school he definitely wouldn’t enjoy it like he does now, so he’s glad he took the time off. Currently, Saul is in school to become a clinical social worker, or maybe clinical psychologist, so that he can practice psychotherapy like his mom. Saul worked as a writing tutor in the Learning Center since 2014, but at the beginning of Fall 2016 started working as a tutor in TRIO Starting Point, which is really exciting. In addition to school, Saul really enjoys reading and writing, particularly philosophical subjects and history. He likes classical music and tries to attend the symphony or recitals whenever possible. Saul likes to meditate if the weather is nice, and loves boxing, which is his favorite sport, and which he’s been training in for about ten years.

 

Summer Adventures: Dulce Explores Spain

Posted on: June 7th, 2016 by francie No Comments

Dulce in Spain

Dulce is one of 15 TRIO Student Support Services and McNair students nationwide selected to participate in the 2016 Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) Keith Sherin Global Leaders Program in Salamanca, Spain this summer. It looks like they are having fun!

Summer Adventures: Walelign studies Rusty Crayfish

Posted on: June 2nd, 2016 by francie No Comments

Walerusty  crayfish

Walelign, a TRIO Starting Point student, has been offered a five week research experience with The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area (DEWA) through the North Star STEM Alliance. Research study:  In October, 2015, a non-native, female Rusty Crayfish (Orconectes rusticus) was discovered for the first time in DEWA, in one of the ponds that is immediately adjacent to, and drains into, VanCampens Brook.  Rusty Crayfish can dramatically alter aquatic ecosystems, and they threaten the ecological integrity and recreational values of the lakes, ponds, and streams in DEWA and the Delaware River. In particular, they are an imminent threat to the ecological integrity of VanCampens Brook.

North Star STEM Alliance students are to assist with crayfish surveys in the lakes, ponds, and streams in DEWA to determine the presence or absence of Rusty Crayfish and other crayfish species. Surveys will initially focus in and around VanCampens Brook and Watergate Pond #10 where the Rusty Crayfish was found in October, 2015.

Walelign was born in Ethiopia but lived in Kenya most of his life with his family.  In 2012 he traveled to Minnesota to pursue his educational goals.  Walelign is an alumni from the TRIO Educational Opportunity Center, and a current student with TRIO Starting Point at MCTC.   He is currently a student in the Mathematics program, a member of NSBE (National Society of Black Engineers), and a member of North Star STEM Alliance.  After graduation, Walelign plans to transfer to the University of Minnesota for the Environmental Engineering program, and then return to Africa to work on clean water initiatives.

Congratulations Walelign!

Moment of Motivation “Lift Off”

Posted on: May 27th, 2016 by maryjo No Comments

Donovan Livingston’s Harvard Graduate School of Education Student Speech

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Congratulations Dulce!

Posted on: April 26th, 2016 by francie No Comments

TRIO Starting Point Student Selected for Global Program

Dulce CamonaDulce Carmona is one of 15 TRIO Student Support Services and McNair students nationwide selected to participate in the 2016 Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) Keith Sherin Global Leaders Program in Salamanca, Spain this summer. The program is named after GE Chief Financial Officer Keith Sherin. Thanks to generous support from COE, GE and other corporate donors, students in this program will have the opportunity to explore one of Spain’s most spectacular cities, earn academic credit while immersing themselves in a month long intensive program of Spanish language and culture. Dulce was additionally awarded scholarships from the Keith Sherin Global Leaders Program, TRIO Educational Opportunity Association (EOA), and TRIO Starting Point for this experience. Dulce was nominated by Dr. Jennifer Brookins-King, Director, and Sharon Margalli, Program Advisor.

The Keith Sherin Global Leaders Program is open to all of the approximately 180,000 college students who receive supportive services through the federal TRIO programs. Of the applicants 15 to 20 students are chosen each year. Over the last 16 years, more than 300 students have participated in COE-sponsored study abroad programs.

Dulce is a current TRIO Starting Point program student at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. She is completing an internship at Children’s Dental Services this semester and will graduate in May with a Medical Office Assistant Degree (A.A.S). Dulce plans to work after

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graduation before eventually pursuing a bachelor’s degree. She is excited for this experience and anticipates many benefits including professional, academic and personal growth. She chose to study abroad, because she believes it will be one of the most inspiring, rewarding, and educationally stimulating experiences of her life.

“Study abroad has the potential to provide me with a fresh viewpoint and unique perspective on a career I’ve been thinking about after graduation and the potential to illuminate the direction I would like to take. Immersing myself in Spanish culture will give me a new perspective on my academic work, and strengthen skills that will benefit me when I begin looking for a job. It will strengthen my interpersonal and intercultural skills and set me apart from other employees. This experience will also provide an opportunity to expand my field of view and help me analyze problems and phenomena from a longer-term, universal perspective” -Dulce Carmona

Weekly News

Posted on: April 25th, 2016 by francie No Comments
Dearly beloved
We are gathered here today
2 get through this thing called life.  – Prince, Purple Rain
 

TRIO Starting Point Weekly Newsletter

 
April 25-May 1, 2016
 

Share your opinion and you could WIN! Complete the short Starting Point evaluation online by Tuesday, May 10 to get entered in our drawing for a variety of prizes. Evaluation here. Graduating or transferring? Take this one instead.

“The Final Push” Roundtable Discussion Tuesday, April 26, 2-3pm in Tutoring Center. How to prepare for, manage stress, and tackle finals. Snacks provided.

Stress Less for More Success Thursday, April 28, 12-1pm in T4150. Learn specific strategies you can use to reduce stress’ impact on your success! Snacks provided.

TRIO Grant Aid Check out the application on Starting Point’s D2L dropbox. Read the requirements and submit your application early. Ask your advisor if you have questions.

FAFSA time! It’s time to apply to apply for financial aid once again.

Summer & Fall Registration Don’t wait to register! Do it now! Talk with your advisor about planning your best semesters and ask about Starting Point’s special fall course options.

Tip of the Week: Prepare for Success Success in college comes best by planning for it: take time to prioritize what you need to do and make a plan of how you can get it done, say “No” so that you can say “Yes” to your studying, and keep your mind focused on the positive things you are doing each day moving you toward your goal.

Weekly News

Posted on: April 18th, 2016 by francie No Comments

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make, the better. ­– Ralph Waldo Emerson
 

TRIO Starting Point Weekly Newsletter

Thinking of withdrawing? Meet with your advisor to discuss options, update your plan, and talk about future courses. Deadline is Tuesday, April 19.

Share your opinion and you could WIN! Complete the short Starting Point evaluation online by Tuesday, May 10 to get entered in our drawing for a variety of prizes. Evaluation here. Graduating or transferring? Take this one instead.

“The Final Push” Roundtable Discussion Tuesday, April 26, 2-3pm in Tutoring Center. How to prepare for, manage stress, and tackle finals. Snacks provided.

Stress Less for More Success Thursday, April 28, 12-1pm in T4150. Learn specific strategies you can use to reduce stress’ impact on your success! Snacks provided.

TRIO Grant Aid Check out the application on Starting Point’s D2L dropbox. Read the requirements and submit your application early. Ask your advisor if you have questions.

FAFSA time! It’s time to apply to apply for financial aid once again.

Summer & Fall Registration Don’t wait to register! Do it now! Talk with your advisor about planning your best semesters and ask about Starting Point’s special fall course options.

Tip of the Week: Little by Little Study a little bit each day so that your brain is not overloaded right before the exam! You will be more relaxed and confident in your skills and abilities.

 

Weekly News

Posted on: April 11th, 2016 by francie No Comments
“If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought.” — Peace Pilgrim
 

TRIO Starting Point Weekly Newsletter

Celebrate Success Luncheon  Thursday, April 14, 11:30-1:30, T1400 (NOTE: room change) Take a break and celebrate your accomplishments with friends and lunch! We’ll be recognizing 35 years of Starting Point, our graduates and transferring students, amazing instructors, and YOU! Open house event – Come when you can!

Thinking of withdrawing? Meet with your advisor to discuss options, update your plan, and talk about future courses. Deadline is Tuesday, April 19.

Share your opinion and you could WIN! Complete the short Starting Point evaluation online by Tuesday, May 10 to get entered in our drawing for a variety of prizes. Evaluation here. Graduating or transferring? Take this one instead.

TRIO Grant Aid Check out the application on Starting Point’s D2L dropbox. Read the requirements and submit your application early. Ask your advisor if you have questions.

FAFSA time! It’s time to apply to apply for financial aid once again. If you file taxes, wait three weeks before doing your FAFSA. Advisors are happy to help!

Summer & Fall Registration Don’t wait to register! Do it now! Talk with your advisor about planning your best semesters and ask about Starting Point’s special fall course options.

Tip of the Week: Little by Little Study a little bit each day so that your brain is not overloaded right before the exam! You will be more relaxed and confident in your skills and abilities.

Weekly News

Posted on: March 28th, 2016 by francie No Comments
“It is not obstacles or circumstances that determine results; rather it is the attitude toward conquering them. Obstacles don’t make people stop … people stop themselves.”Carol Quinn


 

“When Life Gives You Lemons, Then What?” Roundtable Discussion Thursday, March 30, 2:30-3:30 in the Tutoring Center                      Join our Peer Mentors to talk about how to keep going despite the challenges!

Mid-semester Progress Reports have been sent to your instructors: Check with your Starting Point advisor to view course progress and instructor recommendations!

Have a great instructor? Last chance to nominate your great instructor for an Instructor Appreciation Award. Complete your nomination here or find a form in the Tutoring Center.

Augsburg Campus Visit Friday, April 8, 10:15-2:30  Interested? Sign up with your advisor to reserve your spot.

Summer/Fall Registration has begun! Meet with your advisor soon!

  • Ask about special fall course options for ENGA 900/1110, PHIL 2110-Logic and free FYST 1000.
  • Check out mid-semester updates from your instructors.

Celebrate Success Luncheon  Thursday, April 14, 11:30-1:30, L3000 Take a break and celebrate your accomplishments with friends and lunch! We’ll be recognizing graduates and transferring students, amazing instructors, and YOU! Come when you can!

FAFSA time! It’s time to apply to apply for financial aid once again. If you file taxes, wait three weeks before doing your FAFSA. Advisors are happy to help!

Are you graduating this spring? Apply to be a student speaker at the 2016 MCTC commencement ceremony! Submit a letter of interest, describing your skills, qualifications and involvement in campus activities (please include your contact information and Student ID) to Tara Martinez (tara.martinez@minneapolis.edu; H.2913).

Tip of the Week: Taking Notes In addition to using readings and power points, writing brief notes that summarize main ideas and key points can be very helpful in testing your understanding of the material as you study and a great tool to use when you are studying for an exam.

30th Anniversary National TRIO Day at MCTC

Posted on: March 3rd, 2016 by francie No Comments

 Minneapolis, Minn.—Minneapolis Community and Technical College and the Minnesota TRIO Association will hosts the 30th Anniversary of National TRIO Day Conference for the Minnesota Southern TRIO District on March 12th.  Nationally known speaker and author, Richard L. Taylor Jr., will keynote the conference and share his story of being a past TRIO student and his keys to success. Congressman Keith Ellison, Representing Minnesota 5th District, will be one of the honored guests. Nearly 500 students and guests will participate in the conference aimed at empowering first generation and modest income student success. Students participating in the conference are from TRIO programs at MCTC, Hennepin Technical College, Minnesota State University-Mankato, Normandale Community College, Southwest Minnesota State University, St. Olaf College, and the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities and Duluth campuses. The event will also host a college fair and presentations from over 30 colleges and universities.

Photo credit: Created by Aucity
Creative Design & Consulting

On February 24, 1986, a resolution was read (H. Con. Res. 278) in Congress expressing the sense that February 28, 1986, should be designated as “National TRIO Day” to commemorate the annual achievements of the Federal TRIO programs in communities across the country. Today, National TRIO Day is an Congressman Keith Eillisonopportunity to focus the nation’s “attention on the needs of disadvantaged young people and adults aspiring to improve their lives if they are to become contributing citizens of the country, and to the talent which will be wasted if that investment is not made.”

TRIO programs were the first national college access and retention programs to address the serious social and cultural barriers to education in America. TRIO is a set of federally-funded college–based educational opportunity outreach programs that motivate and support students from low-income backgrounds – including military veterans and students with disabilities. Currently serving nearly 760,000 students from middle school through post-graduate study, TRIO provides academic advising, tutoring, personal counseling, mentoring, financial guidance, workplace and college visits, and other supports necessary to promote college access, retention, and graduation. An estimated 5 million students have graduated from college with the support and assistance of TRIO programs across the country.

Photo credit: Office of
Congressman Keith Eillison

Today more than 1,000 colleges, universities, and community agencies host more than 2,800 TRIO projects that serve approximately 760,000 young people and adults. Thirty-five percent (35%) of TRIO students are White, 35% are African-American, 19% are Hispanic, 4% are American Indian, 3% are Asian-American, and 4% are listed as “other,” including multiracial students.  Seven Thousand TRIO students have disabilities.

Contacts for more information:  Co-Chairs of MN TRIO Day 2016, Shirley Sanders, 612.659.6556 and Jennifer Brookins-King, 612.659.6564.

 

Posted on February 29, 2016 by MCTC News