Ridgewater VP Inducted into Honour Society

Many of our recent posts have highlighted the incredible achievements of our students.  This time around, we’re proud to recognize the academic achivements of a college administrator.  Betty Strehlow, Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs at Ridgewater College, has accepted membership in Golden Key International Honour Society.  Membership in Golden Key is a result of her academic achievements as a doctoral candidate at Northcentral University in Prescott, Arizona.  She is pursuing a PhD. in Higher Education Leadership .

“It is only fitting that a top academic achiever like Betty be recognized by Golden Key,” said William W. Asbury, Golden Key’s Board of Directors Chair.  “Our members are inspired and motivated not only to achieve exceptional academic accomplishments, but also to make a positive impact on our world through the Society’s commitment to service.”

Golden Key International Honour Society provides academic recognition to top-performing college and university students, as well as scholorships and awards, career, and internship opportunities, networking, service, and leadership development opportunities.

Now’s the Time to Register Kids for Annual Ridgewater Summer Camp

For a week each summer, kids in the Willmar and Hutchinson communities imagine, seek, and explore their opportunities and interests at the Ridgewater College Summer Camp.  This camp is four days of fun-filled adventure for youth entering fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth grades.  Registration for this year’s camps are now available.

The Hutchinson event will be Monday, July 18 through Thursday, July 21 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. each day. The Willmar camp is set for the same times but from Monday, July 25, through Thursday, July 28. 

“The Ridgewater Summer Camp is a great place to imagine, seek, and explore a wide variety of career opportunities and interests,” explained Tari Niemeyer, camp coordinator. “The hands-on sessions can help campers decide what courses, careers or interests they would like to pursue in high school and beyond.” 

The events provide numerous fun and educational options. New sessions this year, depending on the camp location, include digital media, biology, history, movie making, food careers, the science of fireworks, various cultures, and musical drums. Back by popular demand will be sessions on car engines and custom graphics, desktop publishing, simple computer programming, health careers, various arts, fitness careers, T-shirt designing, robotics, horse care, dance, theater, culinary creations, general career exploration, and more. 

On the last day of each camp, family members and friends will be invited to join campers as they showcase their achievements. 

The cost of $99 per student (or $79 early bird special if registered by June 10) includes four days (not overnight) of hands-on supervised classes and activities, materials, lunches, a T-shirt, and other items. Early registration is encouraged because class sizes are limited and some sessions fill early. 

The camps are sponsored by the Ridgewater College Customized Training and Continuing Education, Student Success grant, and the West Central Integration Collaborative, as well as Central Minnesota Jobs and Training, and New Discoveries Montessori Academy. 

To print a registration packet or see slideshows of last year’s camps, go to www.ridgewater.edu/summercamp. For more information or have a registration packet mailed to you, contact Tari Niemeyer at tari.niemeyer@ridgewater.edu or 320-234-8540. To register, contact Jone at 320-234-8592 or joan.driver@ridgewater.edu .

Early Childhood Education Students Recognized by United Way

Students from Ridgewater’s Early Childhood Education program received the Top Volunteer Award last week by the United Way of West Central Minnesota.  The award, which was presented at the United Way’s Thank You Event on Friday, May 20, is in recognition of the work of Early Childhood Education students in developing curricula and activities for the Literacy Totes – part of the United Way’s Growmobile.

The Growmobile is a mobile unit that traels to family child care centers to assist the providers in preparing all children to be ready for kindergarden.

Ridgewater’s Early Childhood Education program gives students the first two years of a four year degree in Early Childhood Education from Southwest Minnesota State University.  Students who complete the AS Degree at Ridgewater have the option to seamlessly transfer into the SMSU program to complte a bachelor’s degree either on campus or online.

Minnesota State College Student Association Names Ridgewater’s Stone “Instructor of the Year”

Ridgewater College faculty member Gayne Stone was named the 2011 Minnesota State College Student Association (MSCSA) Instructor of the Year.  

The Instructor of the Year award is a true honor because the nominations come from students and the recipient is chosen by MSCSA student leadership. Stone was nominated for the award by Jordan Dettmann, Columba Nwosu and the Student Senate from Ridgwater’s Willmar campus to honor and recognize him as a top faculty member in the MnSCU system who has inspired and positively impacted students. 

Stone has taught math at Ridgewater College’s Willmar campus since 2000. Combine that with his many years as a high school teacher and counselor at Willmar High School, and he has over 50 years of teaching experience.

“It is unreal how Gayne is able to slow down a class. He shows more than one way to do a problem. Everything is laid out for you step by step. He does not give up on us, so we don’t give up on him,” said a Ridgewater student in the award nomination materials. 

Stone accepted the award this past Saturday, April 16, 2011 at the MSCSA Annual Awards Dinner. He was accompanied by his wife and several students from Ridgewater College-Willmar. 

The Minnesota State College Student represents students attending the state’s two-year technical, community, and comprehensive colleges on 47 campuses advocating for more than 100,000 students across the state.

Ridgewater Students Take Home Honors at National BPA Conference

Eight Ridgewater students competed at the May 5-8, 2011, National Leadership Conference of Business Professionals of America in Washington D.C. Competitions focus on knowledge and practical application of skills needed in business careers.

 Participants receiving awards in the national competition include:

Brianna Johnson (Willmar) 2nd place, Fundamental Accounting

3rd place, Fundamental Spreadsheet Applications

Finalist, Integrated Office Applications 

Amber Lee (Litchfield) 2nd place, Medical Transcription

2nd place, Medical Office Procedures 

Stephanie Vogel (Willmar) 1st place, Advanced Word Processing Skills 
Makensie Paulsen (Hutchinson) 5th place, Medical Office Procedures 
Michael Nistler (St. Cloud) 5th place, Extemporaneous Speech 
Megan Siegfried (Atwater) Finalist, Advanced Office Systems & Procedures 
Heather Ruplinger (Olivia) 4th place, Desktop Publishing

 Additionally, the Administrative Support Team, consisting of Brittney Spanier (Paynesville), Stephanie Vogel, Megan Siegfried, and Heather Ruplinger placed 3rd in the nation! 

Approximately 5,500 students and advisors from throughout the United States participated in Business Professionals of America’s 45th National Leadership Conference. Activities included general sessions with keynote speakers, business meetings, leadership workshops, contests, election of national officers, and tours of Washington, D.C., sights and attractions! The highlight of the conference was the presentation of the awards to the winners of the national contests. Our opening general session took place May 4 on the lawn of the Washington Monument.

In addition to student awards, Ridgewater BPA Advisor Beth Gravley received recognition for her 15 years as BPA advisor.  Lois Flaig, another accomplished Ridgewater instructor was named in the opening ceremony as one of only two to receive the Outstanding Service Award. 

Business Professionals of America is the leading CTSO (Career Technical Student Organization) for students pursuing careers in business management, office administration, information technology and other related career fields. Visit us at http://www.bpa.org.

Ridgewater Students Excel at International DECA Conference

Students from the Marketing and Sales Management program at Ridgewater College took home awards from The International DECA Career Development Conference, held Apr. 12 – April 16th in Orlando, Florida.  Six students from Ridgewater College competed in four different competitive events. There were over 1400 DECA members competing in various events. 

Students bringing home awards include: 

Cassandra Rix (Willmar) – First Place in the “Marketing Management” event.   

Justin Rademacher (Hutchinson), Myranda Hansen (Glencoe) & Megan Arndt (Hutchinson) – top 10 national finalists in the “Advertising Campaign” team event 

DECA prepares emerging leaders and entrepreneurs for careers in marketing, finance, hospitality and management in high schools and colleges around the globe. DECA enhances the preparation for college and careers by providing co-curricular programs that integrate into classroom instruction, applying learning in the context of business, connecting to business and the community and promoting competition. Student members leverage their DECA experience to become academically prepared, community oriented, professionally responsible, experienced leaders.

The Marketing and Sales Management program at Ridgewater College prepares students for mid-management or management careers in merchandising, retailing, retail sales, sales representation, advertising, wholesaling, customer service occupations and small business management. Marketing students have experiences directly related to the competitive business world. They learn about the global economy and discuss future trends affecting all aspects of business and industry. Students get a realistic view of buying, selling and management issues through classroom discussion, hands-on learning, and workplace internships.