Success Story: Orchards, vineyards, fields and classrooms host innovative training

Success Story: Orchards, vineyards, fields and classrooms host innovative training

May 24, 2017

UAS program student Brandon KrohnBrandon Krohn of Bad Axe was one of eight students to take part in unmanned aerial systems in agriculture training at NMC’s facility in Yuba.Future farmers from around the state converged in Traverse City this month for the culmination of a first-of-its-kind training in unmanned aerial systems applications for agriculture.

Eight students co-enrolled in Michigan State University agriculture certificate programs and partner community colleges participated in a two-week training taught by NMC UAS instructors. Using four different drones, they conducted flights over a range of crops, collected aerial imagery and integrated sensor data, and then analyzed it for potential applications in the agriculture industry

It was the finale of an innovative, semester-long course that met in Muskegon, Traverse City and online and offered students elective MSU credit, remote pilot certification from the FAA, and a certificate in UAS in agriculture.

Currently, regulations limit most of the applications to imagery. Drones can’t yet be used to spray or treat crops. But the students, who came from farms that raised everything from dairy and beef cattle to row crops like corn and wheat to specialty crops like asparagus and Christmas trees, said they learned plenty to take home.

“It’ll be useful for counting trees, seeing which ones are ready for harvest,” said Micah Woller of Montague, who works on a Christmas tree farm in winter.

UAS training facility signNathan Beyerlein of Frankenmuth works for Star of the West Milling Co. in addition to his family’s corn, sugar beet and cucumber farm. He foresees using aerial imaging as a scouting tool, using imaging data to make traditional crop protection — on-the-ground spraying and fertilizing — more effective.

“For crop health, and getting a visual of the whole field, being able to pinpoint where a disease is, or water damage,” Beyerlein said.

Brian Matchett, coordinator of NMC’s plant science and viticulture programs, which partners with MSU’s Institute of Agriculture Technology, said he foresees huge demand for the training. This first course was only open to students enrolled in two-year MSU partner schools including NMC, Delta College, Muskegon Community College and Southwest Michigan Community College.

“We’re just scratching the surface,” Matchett said.

The course was taught in three parts: A five-day UAS build and flight training course in January at Muskegon Community College, a 12-week online training in remote piloting, and the two-week hands-on training in Traverse City earlier this month, at sites including apple and cherry orchards, vineyards, and hops, corn, soybeans and wheat fields.

Visit nmc.edu/uas for more information.

Commencement Thank You!

A heartfelt thank you goes out to the NMC Commencement Committee and everyone involved in the planning and execution of a successful 2017 Commencement. The weather was perfect and it was a great day for our graduates and their guests. It was obvious to all who attended that much time and effort went into making the celebration the success it was. The hard work and enthusiastic support from everyone involved was very much appreciated — we couldn’t have done it without each and every one of you!

Sheila Rupp, Commencement Committee Chair

Commencement Committee Members:
Betsy Coffia
Cindy Deemer
Diana Fairbanks
Jeremy Fleck
Linda Glaesmer
Holly Gorton
Irina Grougan
Julie Hansen
Kristina Jackson
Rita Kucera
Shayrrl McCready
Kyle Morrison
Taylor Nash
Cari Noga
Pam Palermo
Deb Patterson
Sheila Rupp
Jim White
Lisa Krupp-Wilmeth

A special thank you to the following individuals and departments who worked with the commencement committee to help organize and execute the days’ events:
Leanne Baumeler
Linda Berlin
Matthew Goudreau
Ronda Grindel
Jennifer Hricik
Sarah Mavis
Carly McCall
Lynne Moritz
Craig Mulder
Michelle Poertner
Stephanie Prall
Lindsay Reed
C.J. Schneider
Paul Schoppe
Elizabeth Schwind
Kathy Tahtinen
Mary Vasquez
Meg Young
The Facilities crew
And many others…

Smart Commute Week

June 5–9, 2017

Every year community members challenge each other to a friendly competition known as the Smart Commute Week Challenge and NMC has a team!

Smart Commute Week consists of events that promote cycling, walking, taking the bus and carpooling. Free daily breakfasts are hosted at various locations around town for smart commuters. Join NMC’s Smart Commute Week Team by emailing Michele Howard: mhoward@nmc.edu.

Find more info about Smart Commute Week here: traversetrails.org/event/smart-commute-week-2017/

Maritime instructor wins MARAD Outstanding Service medal

Maritime instructor wins MARAD Outstanding Service medal

TRAVERSE CITY — Great Lakes Maritime Academy instructor Capt. Michael Horn received the Merchant Marine Medal for Outstanding Service from the U.S. Maritime Administration on May 6.

Capt. Mike HornHorn, of Rogers City, is a 1976 graduate of the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in King’s Point, N.Y. Upon graduation he began a 36-year career as a merchant marine officer. He spent 24 years as master of large, ocean-going hopper dredges operated by Great Lakes Dredge and Dock. Additionally, Capt. Horn earned First Class Pilotage for the Great Lakes.

In 2012 Horn came ashore and joined the faculty of the Great Lakes Maritime Academy at Northwestern Michigan College. He also routinely sails as a watch officer on the MARAD-owned training ship State of Michigan. His passion for development of future merchant marine officers and radio technology was a near perfect combination for the needs of the Academy, said GLMA Superintendent Jerry Achenbach.

The Merchant Marine Medal for Outstanding Achievement is awarded in recognition of merchant mariners who have dedicated years of service, and have made an extraordinary valuable contribution to the U.S. maritime industry. This medal requires the Maritime Administrator’s personal approval. It was presented at the Academy’s graduation dinner by Rand Pixa, MARAD acting chief counsel.

Release Date: May 18, 2017

For more information:

Great Lakes Maritime Academy
(231) 995-1200

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

NMC Phi Theta Kappa honor society top chapter in Michigan

NMC Phi Theta Kappa honor society top chapter in Michigan

TRAVERSE CITY — Alpha Rho Pi, Northwestern Michigan College’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, the international community college honor society, has been named the top chapter in the state of Michigan for the second time since 2012.

The group received the top honor at the regional Phi Theta Kappa conference held in Livonia May 12-14. In addition, NMC student Alexandra (Alex) Briggs was elected to the position of Michigan Regional Secretary/Treasurer for 2017-18. Along with the three other regional board officers, Briggs will be responsible for goal and budget development for the region, help coordinate three Regional Conferences and represent the region at induction ceremonies and other events held on community college campuses around Michigan.

At Phi Theta Kappa’s national conference in Nashville, Tenn., last month, Alpha Rho Pi was also recognized as a Top 100 chapter (out of approximately 1,300 chapters) and as a Distinguished Chapter (among the top 45 internationally) for the combined score on two projects completed during the 2016-17 academic year.

The first, Honors in Action, was created around the topic How the World Works: Global Perspectives, chapter adviser Kari Kahler said. Alpha Rho Pi focused on the theme “Rights and Responsibilities” and researched water both as a right and their responsibility to protect it. In December, they brought five environmental agencies to Milliken Auditorium and hosted a screening of the documentary, “Great Lakes, Bad Lines” as well as engaged the agencies in a panel discussion on Pipeline 5. They also shared a video recorded message from U.S. Senator Gary Peters acknowledging their work and its importance to the region.

For the second, College Project, they helped put a student face on the work of the NMC Foundation, helping students understand how even small donations add up, to consider giving to the Foundation as students and alumni, and writing thank you notes to donors.

Phi Theta Kappa members must have an overall 3.5 GPA, and be enrolled in at least 12 college level credits.

Release Date: May 16, 2017

For more information:

Kari Kahler, Associate Dean
NMC Department of Learning Services
(231) 995-1228 phone
kkahler@nmc.edu

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Kudos!

KUDOS- (praise or respect that you get because of something you have done or achieved) defined by Merriam-Webster.com

Submit a Kudos here.

Kudos to the Facilities Department: They changed the air vents in PS 101/103 back to the diffusing style which has made a huge improvement for our customer’s experience. Thank you!

Wellness Update

Take a minute to check out the Wellness information on the employee site.

Wellness Presentation for May 22, Noon–1 p.m. in University Center 214

Chris Barr, BCBSM Wellness Coordinator, will review all the information you need to know to participate in the exciting “Hit Your Stride” Challenge! You will be able to create a team of 1-3 people of your co-workers, and challenge yourselves to obtaining at least 4000 steps per day (shared by the team). The team with the highest number of steps will each receive a $100 visa gift card, but those that meet the average of 4000 steps per day, will also be entered into a drawing for a Fit Bit Alta!

So please bring your lunch and join us to learn about the details of the Challenge! If you are not able to join on the 22nd, details will be available in the Intercom and on the HR Wellness Site.

An alternative challenge will be available to those who have mobility limitations.

  • May Wellness Challenge– Log in to your Blue Cross Health & Wellness website and take a screen shot of an exercise video. You can submit one screen shot per week and earn up to 4 entries for a Fitbit Allta. All NMC employees are eligible to participate, even those who declined the medical insurance through NMC. For more information about how to participate, contact Hollie DeWalt or Chris Barr.

How do I redeem my $50 Gift Card?

Simply log into bcbsm.com, choose the Health & Wellness Tab in the blue bar at the top of the page, and finally choose Rewards in the gray bar. If you have completed both the online health assessment and submitted the physician screening form you will click on Redeem Now. If it still says Start Earning, then both forms have not been registered as complete. If you believe this is an error- make sure your doctor sent the form and then follow up with Hollie DeWalt or Chris Barr for assistance.

Emergency Management- May: Fire

Fire or presence of smoke in a building:

  • Pull building fire alarm to alert all building occupants
  • Walk quickly to the nearest available exit that can be reached safely, alert others to do the same, and help persons requiring assistance, with their permission
  • Elevators are not to be used during any evacuation related to a fire
  • When safely away from the building, Call 9-1-1 first, then call the Campus Security 995-1111
  • Notify responding emergency personnel of any persons remaining in the building
  • Evacuation area maps are posted in each building and room
  • Do not re-enter a building unless directed by fire/rescue, a Security officer, or a clearly identified member of the Campus Response Team

Fire alarm sounds in a building:

  • Walk quickly to the nearest available exit that can be reached safely, alert others to do the same, and help persons requiring assistance, with their permission
  • Elevators are not to be used during any evacuation related to a fire
  • Evacuation area maps are posted in each building and room
  • Do not re-enter a building unless directed by fire/rescue, a Security officer, or a clearly identified member of the Campus Response Team

This information along with a comprehensive list of other topics can be found at: employees.nmc.edu/depts/emergency-mngt-plan/

Ross and Brenda Biederman named NMC Fellows

Ross and Brenda Biederman named NMC Fellows

Ross and Brenda BiedermanTRAVERSE CITY — NMC alumnus Ross and Brenda Biederman have been named the 2017 recipients of the NMC Fellow award, the highest honor bestowed by Northwestern Michigan College.

The couple has been a philanthropic and business force in northern Michigan for decades, winning the 2013 Distinguished Service Award from the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce. Virtually every sector of the community has benefited from their support, including healthcare, arts and culture, and education.

Ross Biederman graduated from NMC in 1959, only a few years after the college was founded by a group including his father, Les. He was named an Outstanding Alumnus in 2010. Under his leadership, Midwestern Broadcasting Co. expanded to include nine radio stations. Ross Biederman also developed the Radio Centre complex, which includes downtown Traverse City’s first parking structure. As the head of the joint Garfield Township-Traverse City Recreational Authority, he helped develop the former state hospital grounds into the thriving residential/retail/commercial destination it is today.

In the words of President Timothy J. Nelson, the Biedermans are an “empowering couple.” Ross and Brenda have continued the Biederman family legacy of philanthropy. They have supported NMC personally and through the namesake family foundation for 30 years. Biederman scholarship funds currently support more than two dozen students annually and have transformed hundreds of lives. Most recently, the Biederman Foundation provided critical support for a simulator for the Great Lakes Maritime Academy. Ross is currently serving as a member of the NMC Foundation’s Campaign Steering Committee.

Brenda Biederman, a Buckley native, is an equally wholehearted supporter of education in general and NMC in particular. She helped launch the Women’s Resource Center and the Maidens of Michigan and is a past director for the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.

A fourth generation of Biedermans now has an NMC connection — one granddaughter is currently enrolled in the nursing program.

The NMC Board of Trustees has named Fellows each year since 1964 as a way of recognizing and thanking those individuals who have made special contributions to the college.

Release Date: May 16, 2017

For more information:

Rebecca Teahen
Executive Director for Resource Development and NMC Foundation
rteahen@nmc.edu
(231) 995-1855

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

President’s Update for May 12, 2017

Thank you all for everything you do in pursuit of “Keeping Learning at the Center.”

Notable Accomplishments provided by Faculty and Staff

This section recognizes the good work being done and linkages to the Strategic Directions (SD) and Institutional Effectiveness Criteria (IE) are provided where possible.

  • The CIT Department pulled out all stops gathering together students, their families, and professors at the Spring Recognition Mixer held at the NMC Hagerty Center on Sunday, April 9, 2017. Guests were treated to a taco bar and presentations on virtual reality, the NMC Game Development student club, and the NMC Women and STEM group. Students who were on target to complete their AAS or stackable certificates were recognized individually and the afternoon was topped off with opportunities to try out virtual reality gear, an activity that had people lined up until closing. The event promoted a sense of community in the CIT program and pride in our impending graduates. Parents, spouses, and children; who had previously only known that their CIT family member was missing to school; were able to see firsthand the people, programs, and some of the technologies for which their loved ones trek off to NMC on a daily basis. (IE3, IE4)
  • Two CIT program students and an alum were recently featured in a Record-Eagle article published April 9, 2017, about internships at Frontier Computer Corporation. Nolan Wurm stated that he had not yet completed his first year of classes at NMC when hired as an intern by Frontier. Collin Schlegal, who is in his second year of CIT study at NMC, was hired to a full time position after interning with Frontier. The article states that their supervisor is Greg Bright, an NMC alum who started as an intern at Frontier 14 years ago. CIT instructor Keith Weber points out in the article that CIT prepares students not just for jobs in technology but also in virtually any business, nonprofit, or government role one might care to pursue and that CIT graduates can land great jobs and pay their way through college. The article closes by mentioning the 6th Annual IT Career Fair that was held at the NMC Hagerty Center on April 17th. (IE2, IE4)
  • BUS 231 students raised over $40,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters from the Big Little Hero Race, held on Saturday, April 15. This year’s race was in memory of Sonja Olshove (IE1, IE2, IE4)
  • Alissia Lingaur, Communication’s adjunct instructor who teaches advanced creative writing this spring semester, will have her short story, “Everything that Matters”, published in MSU’S literary magazine, The Offbeat, this spring. (IE1)
  • Full-time Communications faculty member, Bronwyn Jones, had an essay published in the February issue of Traverse Magazine entitled, “Chasing Wonder Woman”. (IE1)
  • Nick Gerstner, adjunct instructor teaching Spanish this spring, has been accepted to Michigan Tech’s graduate program in rhetoric, theory, and culture. (IE1, IE5)
  • Janet Lively and Melissa Sprenkle, both full-time Communications faculty, presented at the 4Cs conference March 15 through 17, held in Portland, Oregon. This year’s theme was “Cultivating Capacity, Creative Change.” (IE1, IE3)
  • Congratulations to full-time faculty member, Nancy Parshall, whose chapbook in fiction, Proud Flesh, is the winner of this year’s Michigan Writer’s contest. Her chapbook will be published and released at a celebratory reading and reception on Sunday, June 11, 2017, 7:00 p.m., on the campus of the Interlochen Arts Academy. (IE1)
  • NMC’s World Languages department, working with the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, plan to offer two new language classes this year: Anishinaabemowin I and II. NMC’s curriculum committee recently approved the courses. (IE1, IE2)
  • The NMC Financial Aid office presented to a group of seniors at West High School on “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” of student loans. We helped them understand the various options to help pay for college, applying for federal aid, and provided scholarship information. (IE1, IE2, IE3, IE4, IE5)
  • The Advising Center provided “on-the-spot” advising and registration assistance to students during the Long Night Against Procrastination on April 20. With more than 120 students present, this was an excellent outreach opportunity to encourage students to create academic plans, apply for graduation, and register for summer and fall courses. (IE2, IE3)
  • Advisors from the NMC Advising Center held after-hours Walk-In Advising sessions in East Hall to meet the needs of resident students and to encourage continued persistence at NMC. Students were advised using NMC’s degree-tracking tool, MAP (My Academic Plan), helped to create academic Plans within MAP for summer and fall semesters and beyond, as well as assisted with registration. (IE1, IE3)
  • Advising Center staff partnered with Student Financial Services, as well as other areas on campus, to provide the “Geocache for College” event to NMC students. This event was led and planned by Katie Malone, financial aid specialist, in partnership with TBA Credit Union, to send students on a geocaching hunt through campus to learn about being financially responsible. (IE1, IE2)
  • Kay Harris (EMT) partnered with Kristen Salathiel (CIE) to create the Sharing Showcase online video wall as a new addition to the Teaching@NMC website. The showcase page celebrates faculty and staff best practices in categories such as Active Learning & Student Engagement, Building Community, Course Development & Assessment, Service Learning, and Integrating Technology in the classroom. This is an ongoing project that will continue to add more videos in the future. https://teaching.nmc.edu/showcase/ (IE2, IE4)
  • In 2016, the College became a member of the Education Advisor Board (EAB), an advocate for colleges to help the College discover peer-tested ideas from institutions of higher learning around the world. The Office of Research, Planning, & Effectiveness (ORPE) has helped to provide faculty and staff access to this service on the ORPE website under EAB. In addition, ORPE has hosted several EAB webinars at various times during the year and is a hub for EAB research forums and white papers. (IE1, IE3, IE5)
  • Deirdre Mahoney, Bronwyn Jones, and John Zachman were recently honored at the 42nd Annual OPIE Awards, held at the Traverse City East Middle School. They were named Outstanding Person in Education by their peers for their exemplary contributions to public education. This award ceremony is sponsored each year by the Michigan and National Education Association. (IE1, IE2, IE3, IE4)
  • Enrollment Services, in collaboration with Student Life, hosted 4 Evenings at NMC events, for the 2017 Commitment cohort. The events covered the following topics: Commitment Scholarship, paying for college, budgeting, and student life (and NMC resources). Over 65 students and their families attended the events over the past month. (IE1, IE2, IE3, IE4, IE5)

Activities of Note: Tim

  • Nancy and I attended the NMC International Dinner on April 18 at the Hagerty Center. Hosted by the NMC International Club, the strolling dinner of international cuisine featured fine dining from various regions and cultures. International Entertainment was also provided from NMC students and staff, as well as Interlochen Center for the Arts, and local community members. This is always an enjoyable evening for us, with an opportunity to visit with many of our international students.
  • Thank you to trustees Kennard Weaver, Chris Bott, Rachel Johnson, and Ross Childs who were able to join us for the NMC Foundation’s Scholarship Luncheon on April 21. The annual luncheon is a great opportunity for donors to meet scholarship recipients and to celebrate all that is made possible by the generosity of our donors.
  • I traveled to New Orleans for the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Annual Convention where I participated in two presentations. MCCA President Michael Hansen and I presented on the growing community college baccalaureate movement and NMC’s journey to offering bachelor’s degrees. For another presentation I worked with Erica Orians, executive director for the Michigan Center for Student Success, and representatives from New Jersey to discuss guided pathways reforms to impact student success.
  • On May 3 we hosted our second in a series of four legislative roundtable discussions this year. This Legislative Lunch and Learn was held in Lansing, which allowed us to welcome the participation of several non-northern Michigan legislators who serve on important House/Senate committees. This included Rep. Tom Cochran (D-Mason), Vice Chair of the Joint Capital Outlay Committee, and Sen. Tonya Schuitmaker (R-Lawton), Vice Chair of the Senate Community College Appropriations and Capital Outlay Committees. Our northern Michigan legislators and/or their staffs were also present and we appreciate the continued support of Senators Booher and Schmidt and Representatives VanderWall, Rendon, Hoitenga, Inman, Cole and Chatfield. Topics at our Lunch and Learn included a discussion of our capital outlay project, the FY18 budget, the importance of funding the Michigan Transfer Network website overhaul, and the need for increased data sharing between community colleges and the State of Michigan.
  • Our annual Retirement & Recognition Reception on April 27 celebrated 7 retirees and service anniversaries of 83 current NMC employees. Thank you to our trustees Kennard Weaver, Doug Bishop, and Rachel Johnson for joining us to extend our appreciation to NMC’s dedicated faculty and staff. Congratulations is also in order for Board Treasurer Doug Bishop on his 10 years of service on the Board of Trustees. Thank you, Doug, for your service and dedication.
  • This past weekend was a busy one on campus with both NMC Honors Convocation and Commencement taking place. Over 50 students received awards at Honors Convocation while 240 students and 3 service dogs celebrated their hard work and achievements at Commencement on Saturday. Wei Cao and Hon. Kevin Elsenheimer were honored as Outstanding Alumni while the Imogene Wise Faculty Excellence Awards went to Health Occupations instructor Mac Beeker and Culinary Arts instructor Robert George. Over 750 students earned degrees this academic year. Thank you to trustees for their participation in these important events, ending Saturday evening with the GLMA Graduation Dinner held at Hagerty Center with cadets and their families. Congratulations NMC Class of 2017!
  • I would like to pay tribute to Lake Superior State University President Thomas Pleger, who died unexpectedly last weekend while recovering from brain surgery. President Pleger was a great friend to community colleges and will be greatly missed. NMC’s Great Lakes Water Studies Institute has long had a productive and highly engaged collaboration with LSSU in support of students in our Freshwater Studies degree program. President Pleger and LSSU faculty have been very supportive in connecting programs and providing opportunities for our students to continue their academic careers through water based bachelor’s programs offered at LSSU. More recently, President Pleger engaged GLWSI’s marine technology program capabilities in support of subsurface structural surveys for the new Aquatic Research Laboratory and a new Center for Freshwater Research and Education at LSSU. President Pleger had toured our facilities and wanted to connect NMC capabilities with those at LSSU, he was visionary and highly supportive of connecting our institutions and our unique programs for the betterment of all. I have also had the pleasure to get to know President Pleger while serving with him on the Governor’s 21st Century Economy Commission. Please keep his both his personal and LSSU families in your thoughts during this difficult time.

Legislative Issues

State
Capital Outlay—West Hall 21st Century Innovation Center
We continue to move forward with design plans for a 21st Century Innovation Center on our main campus, in hopes that a construction authorization will be granted by the legislature in a FY18 Joint Capital Outlay bill. We have now submitted our design plans to the Department of Technology Management and Budget in Lansing and hope that, following a prompt review, they will recommend our project to the Joint Capital Outlay Committee. It is then up to the Committee to include the project in their final bill, which would hopefully pass in early summer. We will continue to advocate for this with our regional legislators and those legislators on the Joint Capital Outlay Committee.
State Budget
State budget deliberations continue to move forward in the state legislature with both the full House and Senate voting out their respective FY18 budgets. This includes the FY18 Community College budget which we have been tracking closely as to how it would affect NMC. Neither the full House nor the Senate changed their versions with final passage and we continue to be supportive of the Senate passed budget. As you may recall, the Senate version would increase total community college funding by 1% and concurs with the Governor’s recommendation to fund an overhaul of the Michigan Transfer Network website. In addition, the Senate version supports reinstatement of the Part Time Student Grant. The House version of the FY18 Community College budget does not include funding for the Transfer Network upgrades, the reinstatement of the Part Time grant, or any increase in overall funding.
Specifically, as it relates to NMC, the impacts of the Senate Budget would be as follows:

  • Increase state funding for NMC by 2% or $190,000
  • While a modest increase, this shows a statewide recognition of the strong return on investment presented by the community college business model
  • For NMC this increased funding means additional investments in faculty, staff, equipment and facilities—all of which directly benefit our learners, allowing NMC to continue delivering needed occupational and technical degrees and certificates to meet the needs of industry and our State’s economy
  • The inclusion of funding for upgrades to the Michigan Transfer Network will greatly benefit NMC learners who are currently faced with the daunting challenge of navigating a cumbersome outdated website

We expect that the House and Senate will announce conference committee members after the Revenue Estimating Conference on May 17. The conference committee will work through the differences between the House and Senate versions before sending a final budget bill back to each chamber for final passage and signature from the Governor in early June.
Additional state items
In addition to the budget and capital outlay bills we continue to track the movement of legislation that would allow for increased data sharing between the State and community colleges, legislation that would create strict limitations on speech-related polices at community colleges, and the State’s merit curriculum.

Federal
In addition to work on federal healthcare policy, Congress also passed a FY18 budget that funds the government for the remainder of the fiscal year (through the end of September 2017). In all, the budget was fairly positive for community colleges and included funding for not only the Pell Grant program, but also one of our advocacy priorities which was to re-instate the Year Round Pell Grant Program. Additional items of interest included a boost to the National Science Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The bill also includes language regarding student loan servicing, permitting students who are consolidating their federal loans to select their servicer and instructing the Department of Education to develop common metrics to help borrowers select their servicer.

Miscellaneous

  • NMC BBQ is on Sunday, May 21, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • NMC Fellows Dinner honoring Ross & Brenda Biederman is Wednesday, June 7, 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the Hagerty Center.

Nursing, culinary instructors win Faculty Excellence awards

Nursing, culinary instructors win Faculty Excellence awards

TRAVERSE CITY — A nursing and a culinary instructor were named the 2017 winners of NMC’s annual Faculty Excellence awards at commencement ceremonies May 6.

Mac BeekerNursing instructor Mac Beeker is the Imogene Wise Faculty Excellence Award winner. Culinary instructor Robert George is the Adjunct Faculty Excellence Award winner. Chosen by a student selection committee, criteria for both awards include teaching excellence, rapport with students, innovation in the classroom and a sense of dedication.

Beeker began his career at NMC in 2015. He is also an NMC alumnus, graduating from the nursing program in 2010. In their nominations students said:

  • “Every day after class I walk away knowing more than I ever thought I would.”
  • “The instructor is truly a passionate teacher, who cares how each and every one of the students are doing, and wants all of them to succeed.”
  • “This instructor is number one in my book. I have never had a more dedicated teacher.”

Read more about Mac Beeker here.

Robert GeorgeGeorge began his career at NMC in 2006. In their nominations, students said:

  • “I cannot say enough about how fortunate I feel to be in a class with this instructor. This is hard stuff to teach, yet this instructor does so cheerfully and seriously, and always with respect and 100 percent effort.”
  • “By making the effort to have a personal connection to each and every student, the instructor helps everyone to feel calm and competent in a fairly stressful environment.”
  • “The teacher also has many methods of teaching styles that help us learn the overwhelming amount of material.”

Both winners, coincidentally, are married to NMC employees. Beeker’s wife Mary Beeker is an NMC librarian. George’s wife Judy Chu is a communications faculty member.

The Faculty Excellence award was initiated by a contribution from longtime NMC benefactors Harold and Imogene Wise in 1970 and first awarded to a full-time faculty member in 1971. The Adjunct Faculty Excellence Award was created in 1999 as a companion.

Release Date: May 12, 2017

For more information:

Diana Fairbanks
Executive Director, NMC Public Relations and Marketing
(231) 995-1019
dfairbanks@nmc.edu

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

2017 Outstanding Alumni named

2017 Outstanding Alumni named

TRAVERSE CITY — Two Northwestern Michigan College alumni were named winners of the annual Outstanding Alumni award at the 2017 commencement ceremonies held May 6.

Judge Kevin Elsenheimer, class of 1987, and Wei Cao, class of 2009, both received the award, bestowed on alumni with significant professional achievements and/or exemplary leadership in the local or global community.

Elsenheimer is a native of Traverse City. After he earned his associate’s degree at NMC he attended Michigan State University and Wayne State University Law Kevin ElsenheimerSchool. He served as an assistant prosecuting attorney in Antrim County before forming the firm of Young, Graham, Elsenheimer & Wendling, P.C., based in Bellaire.

After five years as a trustee on the Bellaire School Board, Elsenheimer was elected to the Michigan House of Representatives in 2004. He served for six years, where he was elected Assistant Speaker Pro Tem, Assistant Minority leader, and Minority Leader. He served in Gov. Rick Snyder’s cabinet as Executive Director of the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA.) In 2017, Elsenheimer was appointed to the 13th Circuit Court bench serving Antrim, Grand Traverse and Leelanau counties.

“What a tremendous honor. I know that I was very, very well prepared for a career I never expected, frankly, by my time at NMC, because of the preparation I had from wonderful instructors,” Elsenheimer said in remarks at Commencement. “I am truly humbled.”

Since earning her degree, Wei has returned to her native China, where she lives in Beijing. There she serves as a major asset to NMC as the college has embarked on its strategic effort to expand international engagement and recruit international students over the last several years.

Wei CaoCurrently an entrepreneur and consultant, Wei has served as a liaison with Chinese institutions on multiple NMC visits. She has been a link to Chinese art galleries for the Dennos, and to institutions like the Yellow River Conservancy Technical Institute, with whom NMC has a formal partnership and where NMC instructors will begin teaching in June. Dennos Museum Center director Gene Jenneman presented Wei with her award on a trip to China in April.

“I am greatly honored to have received this award,” she said. “I would like to thank NMC for all the guidance provided throughout these years even after graduation. I sincerely wish the best for NMC and I will keep sharing my experiences with China!”

NMC established the Outstanding Alumni award in 1988. It is the highest award NMC presents to an alumnus.

Release Date: May 11, 2017

For more information:

Betsy Coffia
Director of Alumni Relations
bcoffia@nmc.edu
(231) 995-2825

NON-DISCRIMINATION POLICY NOTICE

Northwestern Michigan College is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all persons and does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, disability, genetic information, height, weight, marital status or veteran status in employment, educational programs and activities, and admissions. nmc.edu/non-discrimination

Success Story: Fourth generation of Oleson family steps up to the plate

Success Story: Fourth generation of Oleson family steps up to the plate

May 10, 2017

Samantha Oleson at the NMC Barbecue in 2007Samantha Oleson at the NMC Barbecue in 2007For many northern Michigan residents, the annual NMC Barbecue is a spring tradition. For Samantha Oleson, it goes back a lifetime.

The 22-year-old is part of the fourth generation of the Oleson family to carry on the fundraising picnic under the pines started in 1956 by her great-grandparents, Jerry and Frances Oleson.

This year she formally joined the Barbecue Board, the volunteer committee that spends several months planning the Barbecue, set for May 21 on NMC’s main campus. But the Sunday before Memorial weekend has long been a dedicated date on her calendar.

“I’ve been volunteering since I was seven years old,” Oleson said. She’s never missed a single Barbecue, even during her college years at Western Michigan University. “I would bring my friends and volunteer. It wasn’t something that I felt obligated to do, but I wanted to do.”

Mark, Frankie, Don and D.J. OlesonMark, Frankie, Don and D.J. Oleson: Four generations enjoy the 2015 BarbecueA former dual-enrolled NMC student, Oleson is among a group of four cousins in the fourth generation of the family who now work in the Oleson’s stores. They continue to donate all the food for the Barbecue, which drew 7,678 people in 2016. On May 21, they’ll fan out for different day-of duties. Even fifth-generation Frankie Oleson, age 2 and a half, gets a job.

“He carried buckets,” said dad Mark Oleson, Samantha’s cousin. “He’s excited.”

They’ll still squeeze in time to enjoy the meal themselves.

“We eat on the steps, right past the serving lines,” Samantha Oleson said. “It’s great to see people come, year and year again, and see how dedicated they are to the college and the Barbecue.”

Besides the meal, the Barbecue includes classroom and program displays, free live music, a veteran’s tent and an alumni tent. Separate ticketed activities include children’s games and a cake walk.

Tickets are $6 in advance ($8 on Barbecue Day) and on sale now online and at Oleson’s Food Stores. Visit nmc.edu/bbq for more information.

Wellness Reward Deadline Approaching!

Those who have selected the Blue Cross medical plan are eligible to receive a $50 gift card for completing the Blue Cross Health & Wellness online Health Assessment and submitting their physician health screening form before Wednesday, May 31, 2017.

If you have misplaced your health screening form, you can print a new one through your Health and Wellness page!

To get started, log on or register your Blue Cross® Blue Shield® of Michigan account at bcbsm.com. You can also use the Blue Cross® Blue Shield® of Michigan mobile app. From there, select Health & Wellness.

Don’t have Blue Cross medical through NMC? You still have access to all the great features within the Blue Cross® Health & Wellness website, powered by WebMD®.

Contact Chris Barr or Hollie DeWalt for assistance.

  • May Wellness Challenge– Log in to your Blue Cross Health & Wellness website and take a screen shot of an exercise video. You can submit one screen shot per week and earn up to 4 entries for a Fitbit Allta. All NMC employees are eligible to participate, even those who declined the medical insurance through NMC. For more information about how to participate, contact Hollie DeWalt or Chris Barr.

How do I redeem my $50 Gift Card?

Simply log into bcbsm.com, choose the Health & Wellness Tab in the blue bar at the top of the page, and finally choose Rewards in the gray bar. If you have completed both the online health assessment and submitted the physician screening form you will click on Redeem Now. If it still says Start Earning- then both forms have not been registered as complete. If you believe this is an error, make sure your doctor sent the form and then follow up with Hollie DeWalt or Chris Barr for assistance.