Where did the Fall semester go? Time has quickly passed as I see holiday planning taking place and Spring registration now open. I am overjoyed with the amazing work provided by our faculty, staff and students at our college. Through the Shared Governance Council, AQIP Committee and the Quality Task Force our faculty are helping to lead efforts for the Higher Learning Commission accreditation reaffirmation visit in April 2017. Additionally, this year with the support of our Foundation Board, faculty, staff, students and the business community we raised the most money ever for our College Foundation Fall Gala. We have so many blessings which deserve appreciation. I would like for us to pause and reflect upon where we are and how we will continue to move forward as a college community.

This October I presented with Jean Maierhofer the college Chief Diversity and Affirmative Action Officer at the Academic Student Affairs Leadership conference in Breezy Point, Minnesota. The reason why we were asked to present is because Hennepin Technical College’s Diversity Plan is recognized as a leading model for the Minnesota State System. Our college is committed to academic excellence, cultural competence and remaining a safe space for equity and inclusion. We must continue to challenge ourselves to embrace diverse cultures, diverse opinions and foster respect that transforms our classrooms, graduates and communities. I am also very proud of the Diversity Book Club and the wonderful conversations that take place on our campuses. It is faculty like Monica Erling who challenges us to think differently and hear voices of others respectfully. It is imperative that we continue our efforts to be a transformative and inclusive environment that supports student success.

I hope you have an opportunity in the coming weeks to celebrate the holiday season with your colleagues as well as with your family and friends. I wish you each a peaceful and blessed Holiday season.

Merrill Irving, Jr., Ed.D.

Machine Tool Orientation

Each semester the Machine Tool program faculty hold a required orientation for all new and returning day and evening program students. The orientation provides faculty with the opportunity to review program curriculum, required supplies, and lab safety procedures. In addition, the orientation brings together first and second year students which helps promote both program persistence and completion. Last spring faculty made a strategic effort to spend orientation time reviewing the importance of completing their award. To further reinforce the benefits of program completion, faculty invited an industry partner to the day and evening orientations. Industry partner who attended the orientations was Delkor, a leading U.S. manufacturer of packaging machinery.

Patricia Anderson, vice president of human resources and machine shop manager, Jonathan Kloss, highlighted the vast array of machinist career opportunities across industry sectors. And most importantly, the industry representatives did an outstanding job promoting the benefits of program completion.

Fluid Power News

The college’s Fluid Power program welcomes Chad Grimmer and Michael Cirillo to their faculty team. Both new faculty members are graduates of Hennepin Technical College’s Fluid Power program!   

Mr. Grimmer is a Certified Fluid Power Specialist with 19 years of industry experience.  He has also completed specialized hydraulic training in troubleshooting, air leak analysis, and engineering assistance. He has been an adjunct faculty member for the fluid power program and is extremely excited to begin a full time faculty position. Mr. Grimmer will be teaching the first year fluid power courses.   

Mr. Cirillo also brings 19 years of industry experience to his faculty position. His industry experiences provided him with a broad depth of knowledge and skills in the field of fluid power. Mr. Cirillo has a long history of volunteering in the community. As a Boy Scout and Robotic Challenge leader, it provided him the opportunity to teach young people. It was these teaching experiences that sparked his passion to seek a teaching position in post-secondary education. Mr. Cirillo is looking forward to sharing his knowledge and skills with our second year fluid power students. Mr. Cirillo also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Technology.

Metro Transit

Hennepin Technical College has been working with Metro Transit and TwinCities Rise! on a first of its kind Bus Maintenance Technician program. The Metro Transit Technician program will build the mechanic workforce of the future by identifying qualified, diverse candidates from the communities Metro Transit serves. The first cohort of 19 candidates recently completed a 120-hour Customized Bus Specific training program. Participants will now enroll in HTC’s Medium/Heavy Truck program to earn an A.A.S. degree. Once completed, the students will be hired as a Metro Transit Bus Mechanic.

Marketing wins Medallion Awards

The Marketing Department won 3 Medallion Awards from the National Council for Marketing and Public Relations (NCMPR). NCMPR is the only organization of its kind that exclusively represents marketing and public relations professionals at community and technical colleges. As one of the fastest-growing affiliates of the American Association of Community Colleges, NCMPR has more than 1,550 members from more than 650 colleges across the United States, Canada and other countries.

College Promotional Brand Work Category: 

Video Shorts Category: 

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon at State Fair

Representatives from HTC attended the State Fair on Tuesday, August 30 for Military Appreciation Day. They joined other Beyond the Yellow Ribbon (BTYR) companies in Carousel Park as “we all tell our story about how we support, honor and recognize our service members, veterans and military families.” HTC also represented Minnesota State in the Education Building during the entire state fair.

New faces and moves in Enrollment Services

Enrollment Services has had several employees seek opportunities to professionally grow in other positions, at other intuitions, and continue their education. We are very fortunate to have had many years of service provided to our HTC students from these individuals and thankful for their hard work, dedication, and commitment they made to meet HTC’s mission and vision. 

Please help me welcome our new (and old) staff into their new positions! 

Brianna Baxton, Interim Pre-Enrollment Advisor and Outreach Specialist, is a first generation college student and a Hennepin Technical College graduate, December of 2015. She acquired an A.A.S. degree in Medical Administration and an A.A.S. degree in Executive Administration. While completing her degrees at HTC, Brianna worked as a work-study student in the Enrollment Services department. Most recently, she worked as an Administrative Assistant with a company called R.T. Sales. Brianna resides in Monticello with her husband, Andrew and dog, Jax. In her free time, she enjoys various outdoor activities and spending as much time as possible with family and friends.  You will find Brianna in Enrollment Services BP H103. You can reach her at  or 763-488-2547.  

Todd Carlton, Enrollment Advisor, has been with HTC since June of 2015 when he started as our Marketing and Outreach Specialist. He recently accepted the permanent Enrollment Advisor position. Todd is a Minneapolis native who still lives 10 blocks away, on the same street, from his childhood home. His first college experience with Hennepin Technical College was as a PSEO student at the Eden Prairie Campus. Todd identifies himself as a non-traditional student and holds an A.A. with Music Emphasis from Normandale, a B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, and a M.S. in Educational Leadership from Minnesota State University, Mankato. His top 5 strengths are: Strategic, Connectedness, Ideation, Input and Includer. Todd is passionate about educational equity and eliminating racism in higher education You will find Todd in BP H112 and EP H115. You can reach him at Todd.Carlton@hennepintech.eduor 952-995-1482. 

Tara Clickscales, Interim Financial Aid Processor, comes to us from Career Quest where she served as the Corporate Financial Aid Manager. Tara has approximately nine years of experience in the financial aid field and has worked not only as a corporate manger but a Financial Aid Director prior to Career Quest.

Greetings from the TRIO SSS programs!

TRIO SSS completed their 4-week summer program on June 27, 2016. Thirteen students participated in the summer bridge COMM 2050 class and all passed with a B or better. The program’s purpose was to provide students a transitional gateway from high school to college. The program also allowed HTC students taking less than 15 college credits this opportunity to transition from remedial courses to mainstream. Students gained great knowledge in understanding characteristics and processes of interpersonal communication skills. Students also were taught basic college-readiness skills, which will enhance their success in college. 

TRIO SSS ESL completed an 8-week summer bridge course, ESOL 0850, which was successful. Fourteen students participated in the course and all passed with a B or better. ESOL 0850 acted as a catch-up course to help students continue their ESOL track and mainstream into college courses for fall term. All students who participated were given academic and financial support.

TRIO- Educational Talent Search

The TRIO- Educational Talent Search (ETS) Program recently completed the fifth year of their five-week academic summer enrichment program on the Brooklyn Park campus.   

Robbinsdale Cooper and Brooklyn Center high school students attended daily classes in Math and English as an effort to reach college level on the Accuplacer test. The ETS students learned Photoshop skills from Linda Valentine during a Graphic Design session, cooked a four-course meal with Chef Dave Eisenreich, and toured the nursing simulation with Jean Bowman..    

The U.S. Department of Education has renewed this highly competitive TRIO –Educational Talent Search grant for another five years.

GEAR UP Summer Program

Each year, Hennepin Technical College hosts The Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs' (GEAR UP) week long summer program. This year the upcoming Juniors from Fridley and Robbinsdale Cooper High School participated in the summer program focusing on the theme "Preparing for College."  Students were able to participate in a mock college admissions and registration seminar presented by HTC's Corey Young and Emily Schumacher, which included choosing classes to create their school schedule; learning about the importance of service at St. Cloud State University, which included a service learning project; participated in a First Year Experience class at Anoka Ramsey Community College; and ended their week with an overnight stay at Bemidji State University.  


To promote dialogue and understanding and to affirm the value of all members of our community, the Diversity Committee is sponsoring an all-campus Diversity Book Club and event series throughout the 2016-2017 academic year.  Over 150 students, faculty and staff have signed up to read and discuss selected essays from the book "A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota."  Each month, we are hosting 15-20 small group discussions co-facilitated by students and Diversity Committee members, as well as author talks and other related events. 

In September, for Latin@ Heritage Month, we welcomed author Rodrigo Sanchez-Chavarria.  For October's LGBTQ History Month, we had an Ally Training by the Pride Institute, an LGBTQ Notable Leaders poster display, and an author talk by Andrea Jenkins.  In November, we hosted a Stand with Standing Rock event and look forward to a presentation on Indigenous Medicines (co-sponsored by Nurses Who Care student club) and an author talk by Diane Wilson.  Watch for details on upcoming events for spring semester.

Any student, faculty or staff member interested in joining the book club should email

Practical Nursing

On May 12, 2016 Hennepin Technical College’s Practical Nursing Program pinned sixty-six students making it one of the largest nursing pinning ceremonies in the program’s history. As part of an initiative to prepare nursing students for their NCLEX licensing examination, HTC offered a NCLEX review class in June taught by Jeanne Bowman, nursing faculty. Thirty-five graduates from the nursing program enrolled in the NCLEX class with, twenty-three students successfully passing their NCLEX exam in July with another twelve students still waiting to take their NCLEX. 

Additionally, on June 30th, Jeanne Bowman lead a group of 10th, 11th, and 12th graders from Cooper, Brooklyn Center and Eden Prairie High Schools on a tour of the nursing lab. These students were part of the TRIO summer programs – Educational Talent Search and Upward Bound. Thank you Jeanne for your dedication to our current and future nursing students!

Institutional Research

Deans participated in a day-long strategy forum on consistent implementation of the program advancement process. This important session will assist us in our preparation for the upcoming HLC site visit April 17-19 for re-affirmation of accreditation. 

Employee Satisfaction with Services survey was also administered early Fall semester.

Human Resources Transactional Service Model (HR-TSM)

As you may know, the Minnesota State Human Resources community is in the process of developing the Human Resources Transactional Service Model (HR-TSM), which is a shared services model for system-wide HR transactional delivery.  The primary purpose for the HR-TSM is phased implementation of this new model beginning in January 2017, with an anticipated completion in approximately three years. Part of this process has been to establish 4 service centers, Hennepin Technical College-Brooklyn Park campus has been chosen to be one of them! The Service Centers will have a separate reporting structure not associated with the HTC HR office; the Service Center Supervisor will report to the System Office HR, although the other staff will be HTC employees. 

If you would like more detailed information about HR-TSM, the following links will direct you to the HR-TSM SharePoint site.  Anyone with a Minnesota State StarID and password has access to these resources.  In addition, the HR-TSM leadership team has a dedicated email address for employees to submit questions and feedback.

Health Programming

The Campus Sexual Assault and Violence Education (SAVE) Act requires that all colleges provide educational information and resources to students regarding sexual assault and violence prevention. Minnesota legislation requires that all new students receive this specific information within the first 10 days they are a student. To meet this legislative requirement, a video has been added to the new student orientation. Check out the video and additional information online. In addition, you will see an increase in programming and information about sexual assault and other health initiatives on campus this year.


Jonathan Stuart shared a recent blog post that was submitted to Fulbright upon completing his year in Guatemala. Jonathan actually drove back and is now in Minnesota. Jonathan hosted a “lunch and learn” this fall sharing his wonderful experiences teaching at the University of San Carlos.

From the MSCSA Awards Committee: 

“It is with great pleasure that we, the Hennepin Technical College Brooklyn Park campus Student Senate, nominate Dr. Merrill Irving, Jr. for the 2016 MSCSA College President of the Year award in recognition of his outstanding leadership and work with students to create a welcoming and inclusive environment at Hennepin Technical College."

As leaders on our campus, we wanted to seek the voice of our students in writing this nomination letter. We asked our students to tell us what they appreciate about President Irving. We invite you to learn about what an amazing President we have in Dr. Irving through the words of our students. 

“What I like about President Irving is that he is a really cheerful President. He’s open minded and outgoing. As a President, he always keeps us [students] updated about what is happening and seems up for any task. He always takes the time to say hi to people in general. When I was a Student Senate executive board member, he always gave a positive opinion and it hardly mattered whether he agreed or not. I always felt that he wanted to hear from me regarding student opinions.” 
- Franck Tene, Graphic Design Student 

“I can tell from my interactions with him that President Irving is an awesome guy. He is very friendly and kind. I first met him during Welcome Week when he spent an hour taking funny pictures with students in the photo 

- Samia Mousa, PSEO EMS Student 

“President Irving is really happy-go-lucky and he has a warm heart. He makes every student feel welcome.” 
- Rohini Ramanuj, Floral Business Student 

“President Irving is never too busy to stop and talk with students. He will give you one-on-one time. He also makes our campus fun! I can’t wait to graduate and walk across that stage to shake his hand. I feel he is a great President and addition to Hennepin Technical College.” 
- Gloria Watkins, Pre-Nursing Student 

“What I like most about President Irving is that he likes saving the things that I make for him and he puts them up in his office. He always has a smile to share while talking with students.” 
- Guadalupe Lira-Jiminez, Landscaping Student 

“President Irving is always friendly, approachable and willing to listen to students.” 
- Colleen Leuders, Nursing Student

Food Service On Campus

Last Fall a food service workgroup consisting of union and student representatives from the college was formed to begin the process of seeking the next food service vendor. A survey was sent out to students, faculty, staff and community partners in October 2015 with a request for proposal (RFP) sent to the Chambers of Commerce and posted on the State of Minnesota website per required process in December 2015. In January, 2016 A pre-award visit to the college for parties interested in the RFP was held on campus and proposals were received in March, 2016.  

Lancer was awarded the bid to continue providing food services on campus. The new contract with Lancer will go through June 30, 2019.  

All catering using college funds (including departments, grants, student clubs, etc.) will be required to use Lancer for all on-campus events. Lancer has the right, by contract, to cater all food for on-campus events; however, they are not obligated. Lancer will have the right to sign off on a request if they cannot provide catering services. Only with the appropriate sign-off can outside catering be used.  A special “student clubs’ menu” will be available offering menu items at discounted prices for student organizations.  

To increase communication between the college community and Lancer, Jessica Lauritsen, Director of Student Life, is the Lancer contract liaison.  If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Jessica.

Hennepin Tech in the News

Last updated by jlaabs : 2016-11-18 16:15:20