DCTC Shines @SkillsUSA State Championships

Nineteen students break top three in 18 competitions


Dakota County Technical College served as the largest competition host site for the 47th Annual SkillsUSA State Championships Friday, March 28, Saturday, March 29, and Sunday, March 30, 2014. Thirty-eight DCTC students competed in 20 competitions. DCTC faculty and staff served as SkillsUSA advisors for their students. Automotive Technician, GM ASEP, Auto Body Collision Technology and Welding Technology showcased newly renovated shop and lab space from Phase I of the Transportation & Emerging Technologies Renovation Project. DCTC VCOM classrooms were also used by the competitors. Around 100 guests visited the DCTC main campus in Rosemount, Minn., for the event. The SkillsUSA Minnesota State Conference was housed at the DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington Minneapolis South. (See below for more details from the SkillsUSA Minnesota official media release.)

DCTC students performed exceptionally well in the competitions, with 10 students taking first in their event.

  • 19 students placed in the top three in 18 competitions
  • 10 students placed 1st in 9 competitions
  • 6 students placed 2nd
  • 3 students placed 3rd
  • 3 students received honorable mention

First-place winners will represent Minnesota in Kansas City, Mo., June 23–27, 2014, at the 50th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference (NLSC).

SkillsUSA Minnesota State Championships Results for DCTC

DCTC SkillsUSA Minnesota State Championship Results

DCTC SkillsUSA Minnesota State Championship Results

View DCTC SkillsUSA Championships photos on Facebook.

View overall SkillsUSA Conference photos on Facebook.

Details from the official SkillsUSA Minnesota media release

The SkillsUSA Championships, held in Bloomington, Minn., March 28–30, 2014, as part of the SkillsUSA 47th annual State Leadership and Skills Conference, featured nearly 600 students from 25 Minnesota State Colleges and Universities campuses, with 200 students capturing gold, silver and bronze medallions in 60 competitive events focused on technical skill demonstration.

All local competition winners, students worked against the clock and each other, exhibiting their expertise in occupations such as welding, computer-aided drafting, precision machining, medical assisting and culinary arts—to name a few. All competitions were run with the help of more than 500 industry leaders, trade associations and labor organizations. Test competencies are set by industry experts.

In addition to taking home gold, silver and bronze medallions, many winning students received prizes such as tools of their trade and/or scholarships to further their careers and education, totaling more than $145, 000. Over the past seven years, Minnesota students have received more $3.1 million. The SkillsUSA Championships are held for high school- and college-level students who are members of SkillsUSA. First-place winners will represent Minnesota in Kansas City, Mo., June 23–27, 2014, at the 50th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference (NLSC).

SkillsUSA is a national partnership of students, teachers and industry, working together to ensure America has a skilled workforce. SkillsUSA chapters help students who are preparing for careers in technical, skilled and service occupations excel. SkillsUSA has more than 310,000 students and instructors as members.

For more information about SkillsUSA at DCTC, contact:
  • Mike Opp
    Interim Vice President of Academic & Student Affairs
    SkillsUSA Advisor
  • Anna Voight
    Assistant Director of Student Life
    SkillsUSA Advisor

Day at the Capitol

BPA students meet with state representatives

Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda

The Minnesota Foundation for Student Organizations (MFSO) held Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSO) Day at the Capitol Wednesday, March 19, 2014. State officers and alumni from CTSO joined MFSO board members to learn more about the state legislature and civic responsibility while gaining the opportunity meet with state representatives and senators.

Two DCTC students, Tracy Adamson, national president of the Business Professionals of America (BPA) postsecondary division, and Clement Ngwa, DCTC BPA chapter president, met with Representative Bill Lien (DFL), District 04A, and Representative Anna Wills (R), District 57B.

Day at the Capitol

(left to right) Damian Narveson, Tracy Adamson, Kari Larson, Rep. Bill Lien and Clement Ngwa

Day at the Capitol

(left to right) Rep. Anna Wills, Clement Ngwa, Kari Larson, Tracy Adamson, Damian Narveson and Bev O’Connor

Marie Saunders, a DCTC accounting instructor and BPA chapter faculty advisor, reported that Adamson and Ngwa take full advantage of the experiential activities offered through their involvement in BPA, a CTSO recognized and served by the MFSO.

“One of the main purposes of Business Professionals of America is to enrich student learning with professional development opportunities,” Saunders said. “The Day at the Capitol gave our students firsthand knowledge of the legislative process. Tracy and Clement do an excellent job of representing not only BPA, but DCTC as well.”

Bev O’Connor, executive director of the Minnesota BPA College Division, thanked BPA student officers for attending the MFSO-sponsored Day at the Capitol as well as for preparing messages for the meetings with Rep. Wills and Rep. Lien. O’Connor noted that student professionalism at both meetings was outstanding.

“The students gained a lot of insight as to legislative initiatives, and the duties and responsibilities of the representatives,” O’Connor said. “They were also able to see the number of people employed by the representatives— and the role they play in assisting them.”

Earlier that morning, the student officers attended meetings to learn the etiquette expected when meeting legislators.They got the chance to tell their stories and discover more about the state’s basic political and civic structure. The students also participated in a meet and greet in the Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda with the president and members of the Minnesota Association of Career and Technical Administrators (MACTA).

“Our purpose was to let our representatives know how much we appreciate the funding they give to all of our Career and Technical Student Organizations,” O’Connor said, “and to testify how our organization, Business Professionals of America, has made an impact on the students it serves. I am so very proud of the work all of our officers, state and national, are doing for the Business Professionals of America College Division.”

Student Organizations represented at the Day at the Capitol:

Emily Saed, MFSO executive director, on the Day at the Capitol

“The MFSO held its second annual Day at the Capitol in conjunction with MACTA’s annual Legislative Conference. In lieu of weather, both conferences had a few “no-shows,” but there were twenty-one students in attendance and every CTSO was represented! The students were put in groups of three to four; most groups had two appointments with representatives or senators. There were a total of twelve appointments throughout the day. The House was in session that day at noon, so students were able to observe from the gallery! Many of the groups also had time to tour the Capitol building. At the end of the day, we talked about how we could improve the event for the students; all agreed it was a great experience. Most would have liked more time to visit with other CTSO officers. Some also suggested we have additional training.”

To learn more about Business Professionals of America at DCTC, contact:
  • Lyle Stelter
    Accounting Instructor
    BPA Faculty Advisor
  • Marie Saunders
    Accounting Instructor
    BPA Faculty Advisor

Open House @DCTC

Visit the college April 2 for the chance to win a $1,500 scholarship

Open House @DCTC

Open House @Dakota County Technical College

Date: Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Time: 4 – 7 p.m.
Location: DCTC main campus in Rosemount, Minn.

At the Open House, you can:

  • Tour programs of interest and meet instructors
  • Attend sessions on admissions and financial aid
  • Learn about the various services available to students
  • Register for SUMMER SESSION 2014 to get the best course selection; most classes begin June 3
  • Register for FALL SEMESTER 2014 to get the best course selection; classes begin Aug. 25
  • Enjoy refreshments and enter for a chance to win a $1,500 scholarship

Here’s how you can get started before the Open House:

  • Apply to DCTC online
  • Apply for financial aid by filling out your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)
    • School code 010402
  • Visit Transfer to DCTC to learn how you can transfer your credits from a previous institution or institutions

Register now for SUMMER SESSION 2014 to get the best course selection; most classes begin June 3
Register now for FALL SEMESTER 2014 to get the best course selection; classes begin Aug. 25

For more info about the Open House at Dakota County Technical College, contact:

DCTC Students Advance to BPA National Conference

Students bring home 38 awards from BPA state competition


Students from Dakota County Technical College took part in the 2014 Minnesota BPA State Leadership Conference in Alexandria, Minn., Feb. 20–22, 2014, taking home 38 awards. Fourteen DCTC students advanced to the National Leadership Conference at the Marriot Hotel in Indianapolis, Ind., April 30–May 4, 2014.

Lyle Stelter, DCTC accounting instructor and BPA advisor, is honored to be a part of the teaching process that leads outstanding students to their respective career fields. “I am so proud of our students for winning thirty-eight awards at the BPA State Leadership Conference,” Stelter said. “The students gave their best and it paid off.” Stelter added that all students enrolled at DCTC can be members of Business Professionals of America.

About BPA

Business Professionals of America is the leading CTSO (Career and Technical Student Organization) for students pursuing careers in business management, office administration, information technology and other related career fields.

BPA has 43,000 members in over 2,300 chapters in 23 states. BPA is a co-curricular organization that supports business and information technology educators by offering co-curricular exercises based on national standards. — Courtesy of the BPA website

DCTC BPA Chapter Winners at the MN BPA Spring Leadership Conference

College Accounting
3th – Sam Henry*

Advanced College Accounting
2nd – Kayla Kroll*
4th – Vadym Snesrud*

College Payroll Accounting
2nd – Kayla Kroll*
6th – Judith Remiger
7th – Chontae Koonkaew
8th – Sam Henry

Managerial Accounting
6th- Vadym Snesrud

Banking and Finance
3rd – Clement Ngwa*
6th – Neil Klein

Financial Analyst Team
2nd – Chontae Koonkaew, Clement Ngwa, Mitch Hartke, Tracy Adamson*

Financial Math and Analysis-Open Event
4th – Vadym Snesrud
5th – Mitch Hartke
6th – Kayla Kroll

Insurance Concepts-Open Event
1st – Clement Ngwa
3rd – Chontae Koonkaew
4th – Leslie Julius
7th – Honesty Nagel

Fundamental Spreadsheets
5th – Jeffrey Machacek*

Advanced Spreadsheet Applications
3rd – Neil Klein*
7th – Tracy Adamson

Database Applications
1st – Jeffrey Machacek*

Administrative Support Team
4th – Avgust Evseev, Clay Carlson, Leslie Julius, Vadym Snesrud

Computer Network Technology
6th – Jeffrey Machacek

Network Administration Using Microsoft
4th – Jeffrey Machacek*

Computer Security
8th – Clay Carlson

Visual Basic Programming
1st – Jeffrey Machacek*
2nd – Clay Carlson*

Java Programming
1st – Jeffrey Machacek*
2nd – Luke Dowell*

Programming Concepts-Open Event
1st – Luke Dowell
2nd – Jeffrey Machacek
5th – Clay Carlson

Fundamental Desktop Publishing
2nd – Clay Carlson*
5th – Neil Klein*

Graphic Design Promotion
3rd – Trevor Henderson*
4th – Clay Carlson

Mobile Applications
1st – Jeffrey Machacek*

Digital Publishing with InDesign
2nd – Clay Carlson*

Fundamentals of Web Design
1st – Clay Carlson*

1st – Tracy Adamson*

Small Business Management Team
1st – Mitch Hartke, Tracy Adamson, Trevor Henderson, Vadym Snesrud*

Interview Skills
5th – Mitch Hartke
7th – Neil Klein

Advanced Interview Skills
2nd – Tracy Adamson*
5th – Vadym Snesrud

Contemporary Issues-Extemporaneous Speech
3rd – Luke Dowell*
5th – Chontae Koonkaew

Human Resource Management
4th – Neil Klein

Ethics and Professionalism
7th – Chontae Koonkaew

Prepared Speech
1st – Judith Remiger*

Presentation Management Team
1st – Tracy Adamson, Mitch Hartke, Chontae Koonkaew, Vadym Snesrud*

Business Meeting Management – Open Event
3rd – Kayla Kroll
5th – Mitch Hartke
7th – Neil Klein

Management, Marketing, HR – Open Event
1st – Neil Klein
6th – Clement Ngwa
7th – Mitch Hartke

Trading Pin State Contest
5th – Clay Carlson

Statesman Award Winners
Tracy Adamson
Leslie Julius
Neil Klein

*Denotes National Qualifier for the NLC in Indianapolis, Ind., April 2014

To learn more about Business Professionals of America at DCTC, contact:
  • Lyle Stelter
    Accounting Instructor
    BPA Faculty Advisor
  • Marie Saunders
    Accounting Instructor
    BPA Faculty Advisor


DCTC Awarded $300,000 MJSP Grant

College partnering with BTD Manufacturing

DCTC, BTD Manufacturing, MJSP

Dakota County Technical College received a $300,000 grant from the Minnesota Job Skills Partnership (MJSP) to fund training, including robotic welding and fabrication, for 290 BTD Manufacturing employees.

Pat McQuillan, director of the Continuing Education and Customized Training division at Dakota County Technical College, and the Center for Professional and Workforce Development at Inver Hills Community College, reported that MJSP awarded the grant March 3, 2014.

“DCTC and BTD Manufacturing are excited by this training partnership made possible by the MJSP grant,” McQuillan said. “The training will be delivered to BTD employees at the company’s facilities in Detroit Lakes and Lakeville. Congratulations to Larry Lewis, the manufacturing and technology coordinator at DCTC, for his great work on this project.”

From the MJSP Funded Projects and Grant Management Web page:

Since its establishment in 1979, BTD Manufacturing has expanded operations and acquired several additional companies which provide a wide range of contract and custom metal works manufacturing for customers that include 3M, Freightliner, Arctic Cat and Cummins. BTD currently operates six facilities, with five in Minnesota (Detroit Lakes, Otsego, and three in Lakeville) and one in Illinois. Its Minnesota operations account for 717 of the 934 current employees. The addition of the third facility in Lakeville and the investment of robotics welding equipment have resulted in an immediate and significant need for training in robotics welding techniques. While formal welding training is available in Minnesota, there is little to no advanced training, i.e. robotics.

MJSP funding will support a partnership with BTD and Dakota County Technical (DCTC) to meet the training needs of 290 employees (267 current; 23 new) working at the Lakeville and Detroit Lakes plants. Training modules include: Robotic Welding; Fabrication; Tool Making; Mechanical, Electrical and Hydraulic Systems; Computer, Safety (OSHA), Management & Leadership and Continuous Improvement. DCTC will deliver training in Lakeville and Detroit Lakes with MN State Technical & Community College assisting with training in Detroit Lakes. The purchase of mobile robotic welding training equipment (Robotic Education Cell 2.0) will provide hands-on skills development for employees at their work sites.

One DCTC instructor will attend the FANUC Certified Education Robot Training and be certified to offer the training. Training will result in durable skills and a prepared workforce needed to successfully expand BTD’s operations and grow as a Minnesota employer. DCTC will enhance its capacity with the addition of robotic welding training that will provide DCTC students and other Minnesota employers increased resources to develop their skills in this area.

For more information about Continuing Education and Customized Training at Dakota County Technical College, contact:
  • Larry Lewis
    Manufacturing & Technology Coordinator