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Students compete in Autonomous Snowplow Competition at St. Paul Winter Carnival

This weekend, two teams of students will be competing in the 7th Annual Autonomous Snowplow Competition in Rice Park, St. Paul.

Come support Dunwoody College of Technology students at the 7th Annual ION Snowplow Competition during the St. Paul Winter Carnival in Rice Park this weekend! Snowplows will be competing from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.

Dunwoody students have competed in the Institute of Navigation (ION) Autonomous Snow Plow Competition every year for the last six years. The competition challenges college students to design and build a robotic snowplow that can clear both a sidewalk and a driveway without any human interaction.

“This competition gives us a good chance to apply what we’ve learned in our courses,” said Automated Systems & Robotics student Nick Hajlo.

From To to Bottom: Team Wendigo, Snow Devils

From Top to Bottom: Team Wendigo, Snow Devils

This year, Dunwoody will compete with two robots – the Snow Devil and the Wendigo.

The Snow Devil was built to compete in the first year of the competition. Since then, students have refined and added to this original design. The robot earned Third Place in last year’s competition and students hope their design improvements will place them in the top two this year. The robot follows magnetic strips that can be installed on any sidewalk or driveway.

The Wendigo; however, was designed and built just this year. Students from Welding, Automated Systems & Robotics, and Electronics Engineering Technology collaborated to bring this robot to life from the ground up. The Wendigo uses a combination of a machine vision system and an inertial measurement unit to navigate up and down sidewalks and driveways.

Dunwoody students will be competing alongside teams from Case Western Reserve University, Iowa State University, Michigan Technological University, North Dakota State University, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, University of St. Thomas, and Wayne State University.

The teams will present their designs to a panel of judges on Thursday evening at the Minnesota Science Museum. On Friday night, they’ll go through final safety checks before competing on Saturday and Sunday.

Learn more about Dunwoody’s Robotics & Manufacturing Department.

Dunwoody College of Technology’s 2016 Fall Semester Dean’s List

Congratulations to the following students who have been named to Dunwoody College of Technology’s 2016 fall semester dean’s list. The students listed received this honor by upholding a 3.5 (or higher) grade point average, while being a full-time student*.

About Alexandra
Albers Samuel
Al-Hilwani Alexander
Allen Jacob
Anderson Benjamin
Anderson Katelyn
Anderson Tyler
Andreas Ryan
Arndt Angela
Arnold Alysa
Arrington Kyle
Augustine Megan
Autey Brandon
Bachman Bryce
Bachorik Benjamin
Bailey Nicholas
Bares Tyler
Barkley Paul
Barnum Wendy
Barrett Chayse
Bates Kelly
Bautch John
Becker Ikaria
Beery Kyle
Benton Andrew
Biros Hannah
Blaha Ryan
Blesener Andrew
Blommer Dillion
Boie Erik
Booth Adam
Bosak Jack
Boyer Madeline
Bredeson Jordan
Brinkman Joshua
Broadston Joseph
Brownson Alex
Brummer Brandon
Burg Anthony
Caddy Chad
Campbell Matthew
Carlin Samuel
Carlson Anna
Cassidy Brandt
Cha Melysia
Chang Ma
Christian Brady
Christner Samantha
Clark Trenton
Clipperton Elijah
Coffin Nathan
Coleman Peter
Connoy Paul
Curtin John
Dahlquist Aaron
Dallman James
Dao Tommy
Darden Jazmine
Davis Michael
DeCurtins Adam
Dehnke Nathan
Deluna Walldo
Dillie Kyle
Douty Jacob
Duncan Scott
Dunn Parker
Durdahl Daniel
Edgerton Marydithe
Eineke Michael
El Hmamsi Adam
Ellison Joseph
Emly Cole
Enoch Jacob
Erickson Jon
Erickson Travis
Ernst Erik
Evans Conner
Evans Dustin
Factor Noah
Fahey Kaela
Fanslow Jared
Faraone Dale
Fischer Paige
Fisher Rachel
Fjerstad Benjamin
Flaherty Connor
Fletschock Rachelle
Forslund Ryan
Frantti Bret
Frederick Hans
Freeland Angela
Friendshuh Dustin
Frisbie Eric
Fujitake Mark
Gainous David
Gandrud Alexander
Gaona Genesis
Gatzke Caitlin
Gedion Sisay
Genzler Michael
Gerold Mark
Gonzalez Isai
Grindahl Robert
Grommersch James
Grzeskowiak Jason
Guild Luke
Guion John
Haak Samantha
Hajlo Nicholas
Halbert Lonnie Joe
Hall Erik
Halloran Keven
Halvorson Neil
Hammerlund Sandra
Hammond Kaitlyn
Hammond Robert
Hannover Danial
Hansen Chad
Hansen Karl
Harein Joshua
Harris Ryan
Hart Jessica
Haugen Brann
Hawks Anthony
Hays Caleb
Heitman Robert
Her Peng
Herber Logan
Herrick Matthew
Hertel Jessica
Hibbs Andrew
Hiepler Michael
High Anina
Hill Joshua
Hill Tiara
Hiniker William
Hlavka Eric
Ho Tan
Holmgren Benjamin
Hruby Nathan
Humphrey Katherine
Hunerberg Benjamin
Hurd Daniel
Huycke Megan
Hyland Troy
Isackson-Rod Indigo
Isetts Blake
Itkonen Jonathan
Janda Peter
Janiak Jordan
Jenkins Katherine
Jensen Leo
Jeske John
Jocelyn Jeremy
Johnson Andrew
Johnson Brent
Johnson Jacob
Johnson Kari
Johnson Kyle
Keizer Brandon
Kelliher John
Kelly Stephen
Keohanam Souvanno
Kerner Thomas
Kieger Michael
Kij Jan
Kiltinen Shelby
King Nathan
Klegstad Jacob
Kloos Brian
Knoll Adam
Koerner Megan
Koren Alexis
Kostelecky Lucas
Kowal Patrick
Kragt Saige
Kretsu Michael
Kromschroeder Kasey
Kuchta Benjamin
Kuennen Connor
Kuhnley Wesley
LaFrance Collin
Larkin Kyle
Larsen Benjamin
Larson Maria
Le Ngoc Khanh
Le Thanh
Lee Fu
Lehman Connor
Leistico Jonathan
LeMay Ashley
Levine Charles
Levine Isaak
Lewis Dexter
Liend Bryan
Linahon Alex
Lofgren Chad
Lord Alexander
Luangrath Bennieco
Lueddecke Alec
Lutz Ashley
Mabusth John
Machtemes Joseph
Madden Daniel
Madison Andrew
Magnuson Scott
Maier Dana
Malenke Jay
Mandt Kerry
Maranga Francis
Matejka Brennen
Maupin Erik
McGinn Patrick
McLaury Lacy
McNamer Patrick
McReynolds Anthony
Meier Shane
Meyer Jacob
Meyer Mickie
Miazga Michael
Miller Charles
Mingo Tanner
Mitchell Christian
Mitchell Steven
Molenaar Michael
Monson Christopher
Montgomery Madison
Moore Bradley
Morales Emily
Moyer Sean
Moynihan John
Mrdjenovich Maranda
Muckala Jonathan
Mulqueeny Sean
Nakada Michael
Naslund Zachary
Nelson Celina
Nelson Jenna
Nelson Matthew
Nelson Nathaniel
Ness Davis
Newby Duncan
Nguyen Son
Nordstrom Jay
Northway Travis
O’Brien Brandon
Oldenburg Thomas
Olson Andrew
Olson Steven
Orenge Gaudencia
Pagel Tyler
Parker-Greene Taylor
Pearson Joshua
Peltonen Cody
Peraza Karina
Petersen Andrew
Peterson Ben
Peterson Henning
Peterson Jon
Peterson Matthew
Peterson Nolan
Petrie Kristofer
Pevensie Brian
Phandanouvong Sylvester
Poitra Jason
Posterick Donald
Pysher Mitchell
Regenscheid Steven
Richey Michael
Roberts Cory
Robinson Blake
Rodewald Madelyn
Rodriguez Marcos
Roeun Saray
Rog Matthew
Rogers Joshua
Rono Makto
Rosecrans Caleb
Rue Nicholas
Ruelle Paul
Rumpza Nathan
Salcido Alejandro
Samrith Dona
Sapp Justin
Schafer Taylor
Schmitz Andrew
Schneider Lucas
Schon Matthew
Schulz Patrick
Schumacher Brianna
Sebesta Taylor
Seurer Kurtis
Sheforgen Ryan
Sheppard Jason
Shoemaker Ethan
Skattum Ross
Sloan Adam
Smeaton Kyle
Smith Gabriel
Smith Katrina
Smith Luke
Smoter Devyn
Snyder Matthew
Sorensen James
Spartz John
St. Martin Isaac
Stafford Mark
Steffens Paul
Stolp Craig
Swanson Gene
Syrstad Luke
Teipel Holly
Thao Jesse
Thiery Anthony
Thompson Andrew
Thompson Kathleen
Thompson Seth
Thompson Tyler
Toenges Bradley
Tomann Alek
Torma Garron
Towne Peter
Tran Jacob
Treat Daniel
Trembulak Timothy
Tungseth Anton
Turnbull John
Unger Andrew
Valley Jesse
VanderVorste Adam
VanderWal Julie
VanDoeren Julian
VanRoekel Garrett
Vath Rachel
Villalobos Marcos
Virnala JJ
Vue Tou
Wakeham Shannon
Walczak Joel
Waldof Karen
Waller Justin
Wallin Marc
Wambach Daniel
Weiler Jerilyn
Weinberger Max
Weinberger Samuel
Welch Braden
White Beverly
White Reid
Wieden Darren
Wiisanen Christopher
Williams Michael
Wilson Christopher
Winget Andrea
Wittrock Erica
Wood Lynnette
Xiong Cheenou
Xiong Jewell
Yamada Cortez
Yang Cha
Yang Pierre
Yardley Shoshana
Zdon Christopher
Zentner Ryan
Zmuda Charles


*Student must take a minimum of 12 credits to be considered full-time. 

Land Surveying certificate offers additional job opportunities to those with bachelor’s degrees

Why four students chose to change career paths and head back to college.

Dunwoody College land surveying certificate studentsBetter pay. More job opportunities. The ability to work outside. A more defined career path.

Those are just a few of the reasons why—despite already having bachelor’s degrees—Kyle Knutson, Chris Johnson, Stanley Silverberg, and Briana Johnson decided to go back to college.

One year later, all four students have graduated from Dunwoody’s Land Surveying certificate program and agree they are leaving with a much brighter future.

Dunwoody’s Land Surveying certificate helps students find their niche 

“I have a bachelor’s degree in Wilderness Leadership, but I was looking to learn a [more] specific skill,” Chris Johnson said. “I enjoy being outdoors, and land surveying seemed like a good option.”

Kyle Knutson, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

Kyle Knutson, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

Graduate Kyle Knutson agreed:

“I found myself looking for a career that combines my passion for geography with the ability to be out of doors while at work,” Knutson said. “This program is perfectly suited for someone like myself with a bachelor’s degree who is looking to move into the surveying field.”

While Dunwoody also offers a two-year associate’s degree in Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology, the Land Surveying certificate is unique in that it specifically targets students who already have a bachelor’s degree and are possibly interested in becoming a professional surveyor.

The coursework builds on student’s existing bachelor’s degrees, offering a quicker route to the surveying profession. Most students complete the certificate in just two semesters.

Chris Johnson, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

Chris Johnson, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

Program graduates are prepared to become Land Surveyors in Training (LSIT), which work under a licensed surveyor and assist in the collection of data and mapping of the earth’s surface. They are employed by a wide array of governmental agencies, including counties, cities, and states, in addition to private contracting and land surveying firms.

“The goal is to help students who maybe didn’t have a clear idea of what their future looked like before,” Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology Principal Instructor Kelly Ness said.

Stanley Silverberg, who has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications, shared that his unclear future began just weeks before the start of the program:

“I was laid off in December of 2015,” he said. “I had [previously] worked for an engineering company doing land surveying, and I decided to pursue a formal education in the profession to help with employment opportunities in the future.”

Certificate builds on existing skills, adds hands-on training
Stanley Silverberg, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

Stanley Silverberg, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

With prior experience in the field and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa, Silverberg was a perfect applicant for the program.

“The types of bachelor’s degrees or related work experience that work especially well with this certificate include geography, earth sciences, math, and physics,” Ness said.

Students then expand on their existing skills and knowledge by participating in hands-on projects as well as training on industry-standard equipment.

Throughout the program, students take a wide variety of lectures and labs in areas such as 2D and 3D drafting, boundary control, and land use planning. They also prepare for industry by becoming familiar with the technologies they can expect to find out on the job, including computer-aided drafting programs (CAD) and the latest in GNSS (GPS) technology.

At the end of the year, graduates are eligible to take the Fundamentals of Land Surveying (FLS) exam to become Land Surveyors in Training (LSIT). Upon gaining the required experience under a licensed surveyor, graduates will then be able to take the Fundamentals of Surveying (FS) exam to become professional land surveyors.

Briana Johnson, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

Briana Johnson, Dunwoody College Land Surveying Certificate Graduate

The national median salary for professional land surveyors in Minnesota is $70,620 annually*—a selling point for Briana Johnson.

“I was not making enough money with what I was doing [previously],” Johnson said. “I chose Dunwoody because of the cost and the hands-on experience that I would get with the programs.

“I am excited to be able to support myself financially and enjoy the job that I am doing.”

Learn more

Dunwoody College’s Land Surveying certificate offers 22 technical credits in land surveying, as currently required by the MN board of licensure (AELSLAGID). The program takes approximately one year to complete.

To see if you are eligible for enrollment, contact Kelly Ness or visit dunwoody.edu for more information.

If you do not have a bachelor’s degree but are interested in becoming a surveying technician, Dunwoody College also has a two-year associate’s degree in Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology.

Learn about both programs at our next open house on Tuesday, February 7.

*Based on May 2015 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates for the state of Minnesota published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, www.bls.gov.

 

The Self-Starter: An Alum Profile

Meet Vern Discher, ’48 Engineering Drafting & Design Technology

Discher_Vernon1Visit Vern and Shirley Discher’s Prior Lake home and you’ll see Dunwoody pride. A Dunwoody pennant hangs over the door in the den. Certificates acknowledging Vern’s membership in the Dunwoody 50-Year-Club and the Legacy Association are displayed on the wall, next to scores of family pictures and a map showing the couple’s travels around the world and to all 50 states.

“Shirley and I have been truly blessed in our journey through life,” says Vern. “This isn’t a ‘me’ story; it’s a ‘we’ story.”

The couple met on a double date in Minneapolis when they were still in high school. Vern was hooked instantly, but marriage had to wait until after he completed his military service in Germany and graduated from Dunwoody.

Once he had settled into work at West Bend Aluminum Company (a job the College arranged for him), he and Shirley launched their life together.

In the following years, Vern moved through a series of positions that built his knowledge of extruded aluminum manufacturing and sales.

“I was always looking for better jobs with higher pay, so I moved around from company to company in those early years,” he explains, admitting that there were a few times when he tried some “wild scheme to be my own boss” that didn’t work out. “I think I just had a built-in desire to be independent,” he explains.

In 1975, he was named general manager of Northland Marine, a division of Northland Aluminum Products that manufactured marine windshields and portholes.

The company was struggling, and Vern and CEO/owner Dave Dalquist turned it around by moving into extruded aluminum fabricating, an industry Vern knew very well.

With a new name of Northland Fabricators and a new product line, sales took off. In 1979, when Northland Aluminum was ready to sell the division, Vern and plant manager Larry Holen, bought the company, renaming it Norfab.

“A lot of the success of Norfab was my ability to hire the right people,” explains Vern. He focused on sales, and let other people do their jobs.

Shirley was often at his side at trade shows, business dinners and calls on key customers. “She did an excellent job,” says Vern. “She loved people and people loved her. We’d go to a trade show, and they’d show up at our booth and say, ‘Where’s Shirley?’”

In 1987, Vern sold his share of the company and retired to travel the world with Shirley.

“I have great personal pride in the fact that after more than 25 years, Norfab is still very much in business and that most of the employees that were there when I left are either still working there or have retired from Norfab.”

“When I look back on my career, I see that things just evolved,” says Vern. He’s pleased to see that Dunwoody continues to evolve too. “When I was there, Dunwoody was all drafting boards and tee squares,” he remembers. “Now it’s all computers. It fascinates me to go through it and to see what the young people are doing and the things they’re creating.”

Architecture Students Present Design Proposals for Steger Wilderness Center Dining Hall

In August 2016, third-year Architecture students were asked to help design a brand new dining hall for the Steger Wilderness Center, an ecologically-focused building devoted to sustainability education and climate change solution.

Splitting into three groups, the students spent their fall semester studying the land, documenting their experience, creating schematic designs of the hall, designing 3D digital models and building full-scale detail models of the building. Birchwood Café’s Chef Marshall Paulson even critiqued the students designs.

In December 2016, students presented their design proposals to students, faculty, Will Steger, and members of the design faculty.

These are their final designs.

 

 

Dunwoody Automotive adds online training for Audi and Subaru vehicles

 Latest offerings boost Dunwoody’s number of manufacturer programs to five.

As the need for Automotive technicians continues to rise, so does Dunwoody’s list of program offerings.

A photo of Dunwoody's Automotive LabDunwoody will soon offer online, add-on credentials for students interested in working on both Subaru and Audi vehicles.

Audi is the College’s first European manufacturer program, which means Dunwoody is now recognized as a Premium Plus – Audi Education Partnership Program (AEP) College. The two new programs will join the already impressive spread of manufacture-specific programs at Dunwoody, which include Honda, Mopar, and Toyota.

“We are very fortunate in that we now have five manufacturer programs,” said Steve Reinarts, Automotive Dean. “Many colleges don’t have a single one.”

Online training to complement student’s campus training, boost job opportunities

The Audi and Subaru trainings are completely free for students enrolled in the College’s Automotive Service Technology, Mopar Career Automotive, or Honda Professional Auto Career Training programs.

A close-up of an Audi vehicle’s engine, recently donated to Dunwoody College

A close-up of an Audi vehicle’s engine, which was recently donated to Dunwoody College

The add-on credentials aim to complement the training students will already be receiving on campus. Reinarts explained that when a student is studying engines in class, they will also study engines specific to either Subaru or Audi online. The online training as well as all course materials come directly from the manufacturer, ensuring students are learning the most up-to-date information.

Upon completion of the training, students receive an Audi or Subaru General Skill Level certificate, which allows them to work at any Audi or Subaru dealer in the country. Combined with the student’s associate’s degrees, hands-on training, and internship or job experience, the additional certification aims to place students at the top of the resume pile.

Auto department to receive brand new Audi and Subaru equipment, vehicles

But the training doesn’t just benefit those who take it, Reinarts explained. “The entire Automotive department as a whole benefits from these programs.

A close-up of a Subaru vehicle’s engine, recently donated to Dunwoody College

A close-up of a Subaru vehicle’s engine, which was recently donated to Dunwoody College

“Because of these manufacturer programs, the Auto department is donated tools, equipment, vehicles—all of which are brand new,” Reinarts said. “So, all of our students get exposed to brand new service information and the latest and greatest of everything.

“These programs also benefit our new students because we can offer them all kinds of options,” Reinarts continued. “Some students love to work on just one type of vehicle, others like to learn and train on a wide variety of vehicles. We have opportunities for both.”

The College’s Subaru training option is available now. Audi training will most likely be available starting fall 2017.

Discover the Dunwoody Difference

If you are interested in an Automotive career, join us at our next open house on Tuesday, Jan. 17, or visit dunwoody.edu to learn more.

Learn more about Dunwoody Automotive.

Dunwoody’s Cindy Martimo elected to second term as Secretary/Treasurer of IDEC

Dunwoody Interior Design Principal Instructor Cindy Martimo to start second term as the Secretary/Treasurer for the Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC).

Dunwoody Interior Design Principal Instructor Cindy Martimo Earlier this month the Interior Design Educators Council (IDEC) announced the 2017-2018 Board of Directors, naming Cindy Martimo Secretary/Treasurer for the third year in a row.

The mission of IDEC is to advance interior design education, scholarship, and service. Founded in 1962, the organization strives to advance responsible design thinking through professional development, innovative teaching resources, and open dialogue/collaboration projects.

IDEC is the place where excellent teaching ideas are shared as well as opportunities for scholarships, grants, and presentations by our faculty,” Martimo said. “The organization provides an opportunity for instructors from across the country to connect.”

As the Secretary/Treasurer for the organization, Martimo manages the minutes and notes from all board and annual meanings, oversees the budget, maintains the Policy and Procedures Manual, and chairs the finance committee.

“I like my role as Secretary/Treasurer,” Martimo said. “It provides an inside look at the organization as a whole and the opportunity to provide the voice of a teaching institution.”

Martimo has been involved with the organization since 2010. Her second term officially begins May 1, 2017.

Learn more about Dunwoody Interior Design.

Dunwoody students give back for the holidays

This holiday season, Dunwoody’s Student Government Association is focusing on giving back to the community and families in need.

IMG_9312 copyIn addition to overseeing clubs and organizations on campus, Dunwoody College of Technology’s Student Government Association (SGA) focuses much of its efforts on volunteerism and giving back to the community.

In September, SGA volunteered with Feed My Starving Children. The students packed 136 boxes of food that would provide 29,376 meals to children in Haiti. And in November, the students spent time at Ebenezer Care Center where they played bingo with the residents of the nursing home.

“We’re representing the student body and being in a leadership role, I think it’s crucial to give back to the community,” SGA President Danial Hannover said. “Volunteering and doing a little extra is all a part of being a leader.”

SGA hosts holiday drives for families in need

In addition to volunteering their time, SGA organized several drives to benefit families in need this holiday season.

With Thanksgiving in mind, SGA held a food drive throughout the month of November. The drive benefitted The Food Group, a full-service food bank with over 200 hunger relief partners throughout Minnesota. The Food Group provides free food, access to bulk food purchasing, and food drive programs to communities throughout the state.

By the end of the drive, SGA collected enough food items from the Dunwoody community to fill a 55-gallon barrel.

This month, SGA is focusing on the winter holidays by collecting winter clothing and gear donations for the Salvation Army. They’re also holding a competition to see which academic department can raise the most toys to benefit Toys for Tots.

The Association will be collecting winter clothing and gear until Friday, Dec. 23. Academic departments will be collecting toys for Toys for Tots until Friday, Dec. 16. Winners of the Toys for Tots drive will be announced on Monday, Dec. 19.

“There’s a lot of families out there in need – especially during the holiday season,” SGA member Tommy Dao said. “We take a lot of things for granted, and we want to give a helping hand whenever we can.”

Learn more about SGA.