Category Archives: Uncategorized

Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology students form club to expand learning


A group of Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology students created a club to gain additional surveying experience outside the classroom. The club’s first project was a geocache; a drone is next on the list.

The students meet informally for about a half hour each week to discuss current and future objectives. The idea for the geocache arose after the students had completed eight weeks of surveying classes.

“We were starting to gain some basic knowledge of the surveying world. We were looking to apply some of the information we’d learned so far in the semester and apply that to a geocache clue,” said club member Jeremy Brunell. “Geocaching is very similar to surveying to some degree. In geocaching you read up on all the clues, then go out into the world to try and find the cache. In surveying, you conduct research on property lines, site history, monument locations, among other pieces of information, and then you travel to the site to see what you can find.”


Geocaching is an outdoor treasure hunting game that uses GPS-enabled devices to help participants navigate to a container located at hidden location using a set of GPS coordinates. The container typically includes a logbook and a few small “treasures.” If a participant takes a small item from the container, they leave something of equal or greater value and write about their find in the logbook.


The club used Topcon HiPer SR GNSS receivers to record the position of their geocache.  To store the logbook and small items, the students used a durable Pelican Case, which is commonly used to store survey equipment.

The club’s main objective for the semester is to create a surveying drone from scratch.

“The concept of drone technology has enormous potential to impact the surveying world. Such drones can collect data from the field in minutes, where it may take surveyors on the ground hours to collect such data,” said Brunell. “Drone technology is such a new concept that it hasn’t yet impacted the surveying world, but in the next decade it is possible that every surveying company will have a drone to use out in the field.”

Principal Instructor and Club Advisor Kelly Ness supports the students’ desire to pursue emerging technologies for club projects.

“I think the club has an opportunity to focus on emerging technology more than our curriculum can,” Ness said. “Our curriculum focuses on technology currently utilized by the industry. The club can look into the future and explore what technology will be used and how it might impact the profession.”

The club plans to send out letters requesting donations or student/non-profit pricing for drone components.  They hope to have a drone that will collect data by the end of the school year.

“These surveying drones are not allowed to operate commercially at this time, but the FAA is working on procedures to allow for this.  I think our students could be operating these drones within a few years,” Ness said.

Other projects the club has planned include attending surveying conferences and reviewing old surveying documents to research where past historical monuments were once located in the Twin Cities.

For more information about the club’s cache, visit Brunell says individuals who search out the geocache might learn some basic surveying concepts.



MDES students visit Modern Metals Foundry Inc. for putter casting project

Engineering Drafting & Design students in the Product Design class recently visited Modern Metals Foundry Inc. in Bloomington, Minn. The visit is part of a golf putter design project the students are working on.


Before the students visited the foundry, Dan Taylor, pattern maker and partial owner of Modern Metals, spent a day in the classroom working with 21 students to create golf putter designs and follow boards that could be easily cast in aluminum.


“At the foundry the students were able to watch the actual process of packing the sand into a core and cavity using one of their putter patterns and follow boards,” said Senior Instructor Andrew LeRoy. “The sand was hardened using a CO2 process. Finally the sprue and runners were cut into the mold and the liquid aluminum was poured into the mold by hand using a ladle. After a cooling period the part was removed and then brought into the grinding area to clean it up.”


When all the putter parts are complete they will be returned to the students to do the final machining of the putters striking faces and installation of the shaft and grip.


“This project makes the design process come to life from conception through final manufacturing of a part using required standards from industry. It is very realistic and mirrors what graduates will face in industry on a smaller scale,” LeRoy said. “Modern Metals has been integral to the MDES program for several years and they really make an invaluable contribution.”

Putter Contest
For this project the students are required to ensure their putter meets United States Golf Association standards of weight and design. In mid to late November the students will host a putting contest for Dunwoody faculty, staff and students–who will be asked to vote for which putter they think is best. The winner will be listed on a trophy displayed in the Robotics & Manufacturing department.

Dunwoody was featured on “Life to the Max” May 17

Mike Max took a tour of Dunwoody College through its 100 years of history to the present day for his Life to the Max TV Show that highlights stories of perseverance, tenacity and winning attitudes.

If you missed the episode that aired on May 17, you can watch it at

 Mike Max takes a tour of Dunwoody College of Technology through its 100 years of history to the present day. A generous gift left by William Hood Dunwoody in his will started the Minneapolis technical college in 1914 and since then its reputation for excellence continues to grow. Mike meets with instructors, current students and wildly successful alumni of Dunwoody to find out what makes the college and its culture breed success.

“Life to the Max” is sponsored by Lifetouch and produced by Lifetouch Media Productions.

For more information about Life to the Max, visit

Computer Technology adds evening program in Web Development

Starting fall 2014 Web Development will be offered as an evening program at Dunwoody College.

The Web Development program provides graduates with the necessary skills and knowledge to design, create and maintain websites that are well-coded, efficient, aesthetically pleasing, useful, data-driven and user-friendly.

According to Principal Instructor Kevin Wendt, many potential students first question is “can I do this at night?” The evening option gives working students more flexibility to start and stay in the program.

Principal Instructor Kevin Wendt answers student Molly Johnson’s Web Development questions during a daytime class.

“This program allows prospective students to get the key skills they need to get a job in the web development industry, while still holding a day job,” he said. “Financial implications are a major stress for today’s students, and being able to hold a job, possibly even a full-time job, while going to school can be a big relief.”

The offering joins the College’s day program in Web Programming & Database development.  The main difference between the two programs is that the evening program has a lower amount of database coursework.

Both programs are continuously changing to align with industry needs.

“New technologies, new approaches, and best practices in our area are always changing, so our curriculum is updating constantly to keep up,” Wendt said.  “When you get done, you shouldn’t be two years behind the curve, you should be as close to the cutting edge as we can get.”

For more information about Dunwoody’s Web Development program, visit or email Wendt at


RDO Integrated Controls supplies Topcon equipment to Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology Program

Dunwoody’s Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology students are using state-of-the-art Topcon equipment thanks to RDO Integrated Controls.

Dunwoody’s Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology students are using state-of-the-art Topcon equipment thanks to RDO Integrated Controls.

RDO Integrated Controls provided the program with four Topcon HiPer SR GNSS receivers and Telsa data collectors with Magnet software at a low cost rental for the school year.  The HiPer SR is a Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) used to measure and layout precise locations on the ground.

“The previous equipment was older technology–strictly GPS–and was not utilizing all of the satellites that are available,” said Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology Principal Instructor Kelly Ness. “Now the students are using the latest industry standard equipment.”

RDO Integrated Controls provided the Surveying & Civil Engineering program with four Topcon HiPer SR GNSS receivers and Telsa data collectors with Magnet software at a low cost rental for the school year.

The HiPer SR is able to connect to a network of base Virtual Reference Stations (VRS) that the Minnesota Department of Transportation maintains.  The VRS enables students to achieve centimeter level positioning without a local base station.

Ness said industry partnerships and donations are appreciated and ensure that graduates are familiar with the newest industry technology when they enter the surveying and civil engineering workforce.

For more information about the Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology program, go to

Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology now offered during the day

Starting in August 2014 Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology will be offered as a daytime program at Dunwoody College.

The program has been offered at Dunwoody since the early 1920s, but starting in 2001 classes only became available in the evenings.

Dunwoody’s Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology Principal Instructor Kelly Ness (pictured center) works with students using Topcon HiPer SR GNSS receivers

Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology Principal Instructor Kelly Ness says the switch to days will result in larger class sizes. He says evening programs tend to attract smaller classes generally made up of non-typical students who are changing careers.

“We would like to have full classes of graduates,” Ness said. “We feel the switch to daytime classes is necessary to attract the number of students that the industry will need in the years to come.”

The switch to daytime classes isn’t the only change for the program.

“We are in the process of introducing an updated curriculum to keep up with an industry that is constantly in flux,” Ness said. “There is new equipment on the doorstep–imaging, laser scanning and unmanned vehicles–that will revolutionize the industry. We need to be ready to integrate these technologies into the curriculum when they become adopted by the industry.”

Ness says many of Minnesota’s licensed surveyors have graduated from Dunwoody. He’s confident the recent changes to Dunwoody’s program will ensure employers continue to have plenty of quality civil engineering technicians available for hire after graduation.

For more information about Surveying & Civil Engineering Technology, go to

Dunwoody College of Technology’s 2013 Fall Semester Dean’s List

Congratulations to the following students who have been named to Dunwoody College of Technology’s fall semester dean’s list.  The students listed received this honor by upholding a 3.5 grade point average or higher.

Jordan Altonen
Charles Anderson
Dane Anderson
Jacob Anderson
Michael Anderson
Trevor Anderson
Erik Andreska
Nicholas Arneson
Grant Aslakson
Tyler Bares
Drew Benson
Carl Bergerson
Stephen Berguetski
Amelia Blakeley
Wade Blanton
Thomas Bloch
Kyle Blouin
Blake Bodine
Aaron Boggs
David Bohnsack
Aaron Bolser
Travis Bonnstetter
Zachary Boyd
Aaron Breid
Nicholas Brenk
Christopher Brenna
Richard Brodala
Aaron Brooks
Andrew Broshat
Joseph Brown
Kevin Brown
Sarah Brown
Thomas Brown
Ethan Brule
Timothy Bryant
John Bungert
Jacob Bursott
Brett Butler
Scott Byzewski
Joseph Cadorette
Willie Cager
Darren Carlisle
Thomas Carmichiel
Boon Chang
Maxwell Chenoweth
Kevin Clausen
Derek Conavatti
Shannon Corpe
Jared Courtney
Jessica Curtis
Benjamin Cutter
Andrew Davis
Brian Dehn
Thomas DeMars
James Demos
Mesay Deyas
Mark Donlin
Kent Duffney
Timothy Easter
Jesse Elven
Erin Erickson
Nicholas Ernst
Christopher Ersland
Nathaniel Evenson
Kenyactha Favors
Steven Fay
Allison Fedie
Michael Felton
Michael Flahave
James Flannigan
Jon Fontaine
Brett Fredrichs
Nicholas Freeland
Jesse Gable
Jarrett Gardner
Kevin Geis
Mark Gerrits
Brian Giller
Joel Greimel
Mitchell Grosz
Jacob Gruber
Brady Grummons
Jacob Grundhofer
Bradley Guetter
Matthew Gustavson
Ibrahim Haji
David Hall
Josiah Hanka
Christopher Hansen
Logan Hapy
Christopher Harrington
Ryan Harstad
Danielle Haugen
Montgomery Have
John Hebrink
Dustin Heiling
Benjamin Hendrikse
James Herman
Justin Herman
Matthew Heshiser
Karl Hilde
Andrew Hill
David Hofgren
Nathan Hole
Samuel Holtberg
Ian Hubbard
Kyle Huberty
Ashley Hurner
Dustin Irmiter
Randy Iverson
Matthew Jaeckels
Jamison James
Joel Jameson
Ian Jarvis
Nicholas Jepson
Katelyn Johnson
Molly Johnson
Oladipo Johnson
Nicole Johnston-Vite
Evan Kangas
Nicole Kehren
John Kelliher
Robert Kennedy
Ryan Kessler
Zachariah Klein
Sean Knollmaier
Zeth Knyphausen
Joseph Kooiman
Anthony Kopp
Daniel Kranz
Hannah Kraynick
Nicholas Krenz
Maria Ksiazek
Andrew Kuehn
Esther Kwakye
Kyle LaCoe
Charlotte LaCour
Sean LaFontaine
Michael Lamm
Meghan Larson
Quinn Larson
John Lash
Jorel Latham
Jason Latts
Lucas Law
Vincent Lecuyer
Steven Leifson
Scott Leighton
Christopher Lester
Ari Levie
Alex Lichman
June Linnertz
Benjamin Little
Larry Littlefield
Tanner Luhm
Evan Makinen
Michael Mandler
Chad Marchetti
Joshua Matundura
Peter McCain
Daniel McCusker
Patrick McDonald
Peter McDonald
Benjamin Meister
Keegan Melton
Frank Mersch
Kera Messinger
Michael Miazga
Evan Miller
David Millman
Jason Millner
Jonathon Monson
Maik Mosbach
Brutger Mrozek
Daniel Mueller
Jade Murray
Celina Nelson
Matthew Nelson
Robert Neou
Benjamin Newkirk-Ledo
Jonathan Newstrom
Joseph Ngaima
Luan Nguyen
Maurice Nitti
Michael O’Connor
John O’Leary
Sean O’Leary
Nicholas Obermiller
Jacob Ogren
Paul Olson
Timothy Olson
Jerry Opp
John Paananen
Anthony Palo
Amanda Parshley
Brian Parsons
Alyx Paschke
John Pauly
Timothy Paynter
Fernando Pereyra
Marielle Persian
Anthony Petersen
Jon Peterson
Alex Pha
Khanchanh Phetprachanh
Hayley Piekkola
Robert Pierce
Daniel Piper
Ivan Piskun
Jesse Platzke
Joseph Pleskonko
Michael Plucinak
Chad Posusta
Evan Prokop
Noah Rabinowitz
Amber Rasmusson
Cody Reed
Wesley Reed
Lee Reiners
Kenneth Robinette
Nicole Rodriguez
Roberto Rodriguez
Jonathan Roorda
James Rowell
Andrew Ryan
Steven Sabalaskey
Ian Safranschi
Kirsten Sahl
Pete Sajadi
Cameron Sargent
Troy Schellinger
Michael Schlueter
Claire Schuebel
Daniel Schuler
Gregor Scott
Nicholas Sheridan
Matthew Shevich
Benjamin Shiek
Mark Shindler
Matthew Silvernail
Ross Skattum
Brady Skaurud
Nicolas Skrogstad
Nicole Slaminski
Dale Smith
Jeffrey Smith
Jacob Snyder
Matthew Snyder
Peter Sobolik
Joseph Sohns
Andrew Solberg
Danielle Sonksen
Jerred Speller
Stanley Sroga
Nicholas Stein
Mike Steinman
Karl Stoffels
Collin Sturdevant
Phoukham Supanhnapom
Stuart Sutton
Marc Svihel
Aaron Swandal
Joshua Taylor
Zaaj Thao
Christopher Thompson
Jesse Thompson
Joshua Tichy
Ryan Tobin
Thang Tran
Tyler Tucker
Patrick Van Benthuysen
Brian Vang
Bastian VanHofwegen
Anthony Verdeja
Preston Villavicencio
Adam Voelker
Kyle Vogt
David Vrchota
Shelby Walker
William Washatka
Anthony Watson
Robert Weckwerth
Caleb Wede
Jenna Weiler
Kenneth Weis
Daniel Wenderski
Scott Wessel
Derek Whitcomb
Jason White
Jacob Whiteoak
Curtis Wilcox-Schowalter
Laura Wiley
Thomas Willard
David Willenbring
Anya Williams
Michael Wilson
Jeffrey Wiplinger
Douglas Wojack
Jesse Wold
Craig Woodward
Peter Xiong
Vang Choue Kong Xiong
Joe Yang
Pheng Yang
Matthew Yank
Craig Yundt
Roman Zastavskiy
Mathias Zoubek


Tesla Motors visit sparks interest of automotive students


The Tesla car visit was made possible by two Dunwoody alumni who work at the new Tesla Motors dealership in Eden Prairie. Todd Teele, who graduated from the automotive program in 1997, is the service manager and 2012 graduate Noe Cardenas is a Tesla technician.

A 2013 electric Tesla P85 Model S pulling into the Warren Building sparked the interest of Automotive students Wednesday morning.

The luxury car visit was made possible by two Dunwoody alumni who work at the new Tesla Motors dealership in Eden Prairie. Todd Teele, who graduated from the automotive program in 1997, is the service manager and 2012 graduate Noe Cardenas is a Tesla technician.

Teele and Cardenas showed students and faculty the Model S and answered questions about its state-of-the-art technology.

The Model S is 100 percent electric and features a 17-inch touch screen display, which Teele says are just a few of the features that make it unique.

Dunwoody Automotive students enjoyed looking at various aspects of the 2013 electric Tesla P85 Model S brought to campus from Tesla Motors in Eden Prairie on Jan.

“Our students just love new technology, “ said Senior Instructor Lee Frisvold. “It’s not often they get to see and touch a $120,000 vehicle.”

Teele and Cardenas encouraged students to sharpen their electronic skills to keep up with advancements in automotive technology.

“The automotive industry is changing,” Teele said. “You need to be a strong person with electronics because you’re basically going to be a computer technician.”

Cardenas’ advice to current automotive students is:

  1.  Be punctual.
  2.  Go above and beyond.
  3. Learn more than just the fundamentals.
  4. Listen to your instructors.