Student Receive First DCTC Literacy Award

Technical schools are generally not recognized as institutions that house great writers, but Dakota County Technical College recently developed an award to recognize the writing skills of DCTC students and change that perception.

The Dakota County Technical College Literacy Award honors students for their writing ability and recognizes that even in technical schools and careers, students need to demonstrate excellent written and oral communication to be truly successful in their chosen field.

Lisa Nygaard, a Medical Assistant major who graduated last May, and Fredrick L. Glassing, a Nanoscience Technology major at DCTC, recently became the first recipients of the DCTC Literary Award.

Nygaard’s essay received first place and was entitled “Torture Under the Big Top”. The paper discussed cruelty towards elephants in circuses and like environments. Glassing received second place for his essay, “Hydrogen: The Time is Now for the Fuel of the Future”, which looked at reducing the use of fossil fuel for electricity, heating, and transportation.

This is the first year that the award program has run. The award was developed last spring through a Giraffe Grant submitted by DCTC faculty members Margaret Milne and Gayle Larson. It is intended to be an annual award with nominations made in both fall and spring.

“As English instructors, my colleagues and I have seen remarkable writing come through our classes at DCTC over the years,” said Larson. “We thought it was time to honor the writing skills of our students because it reflects so many other skills, such as critical thinking, research skills, organization, and persuasion.”

Nominations for the award are based on faculty recommendations to the DCTC Literary Award Committee as they grade student essays. The faculty member submitting the nomination informs the student of their nomination and asks them to resubmit their paper for consideration. The committee makes the final decision concerning who will receive the awards.

If you have any questions about the DCTC Literary Award, please contact Gayle Larson, DCTC General Education Department Chair and Instructor, at 651-423-8395.