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News and Events

Keeping you in touch with MSC Southeast

Change gears with an online accounting degree

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SE-Tech Student Gregg Brandt
SE-Tech online accounting student Gregg Brandt during a recent cycling race.

Gregg Brandt

Published 6/27/11

“Stationary” is the last word to describe Southeast Tech student Gregg Brandt. You won’t find Brandt, an online accounting student, lounging around in pajamas while learning about balance sheets and income taxes from the comfort of home. Instead, Brandt is taking advantage of online flexibility to complete his degree while pursuing his passion: competitive cycling.

Cycling has taken Brandt on a cross-country adventure as a member of the Kenda/5-hour Energy Pro Cycling presented by Geargrinder team. “The farther west I can go the happier I am,” Brandt says. “The atmosphere, people, communities, routes, scenery are all great.”

Living on the road, Brandt finds time in airports and hotel rooms to log in and complete assignments for his Southeast Tech accounting coursework. Brandt has taken traditional classroom courses at a different campus and finds the structure of online courses—assignments, tests, and quizzes—to be very similar.

To be successful in an online course, though, Brandt says students need to be self-starters and active learners. “If you’re doing it just to sit on the couch, it’s probably not going to work. You have to be motivated. You have to appreciate the opportunity you have to do two things at once.”

For Brandt, traveling, cycling, and meeting new people—all while completing his degree online—has expanded the boundaries of a typical classroom. “You can learn and read out of a book in a classroom, but you learn a lot more in the real world.”

Start your adventure today: Enroll in SE-Tech’s 100% online accounting degree

Like Brandt, many potential students are juggling work, family, or other obligations that make completing a traditional degree difficult. Southeast Tech is launching a 100% online A.A.S. accounting degree for the fall 2011 semester to help students achieve their academic goals while meeting the demands of life.

To find specifics on Southeast Tech’s online accounting degree, visit the accounting program page.

Southeast Tech accounting instructor Jill Halverson notes that in addition to being analytically-minded and enjoying math, successful online accounting students share several qualities. What’s top on her list? Good time management skills. “Online courses are not easier or faster than traditional courses,” says Halverson. “Students will find that they will need to spend more hours preparing their assignments than those in traditional courses.”

While Southeast Tech’s accounting program is rigorous, it also has a 97% job placement rate due to the program’s strong reputation and the dedication of its students. The job opportunities for accounting graduates are diverse, and Halverson encourages interested students to meet with faculty to explore all of the possibilities.

In addition to a high job placement rate, the college’s online accounting program stands apart from other options because of the high level of academic support from instructors who want you to succeed. “The entire college has a caring attitude and each student is important to us,” Halverson says. “The staff and faculty are passionate and committed to the education that we provide.”

Registration for the fall 2011 semester is currently open, and Halverson hopes that students will see the practical benefits of earning an online accounting degree, noting that “where SE Tech excels is in preparing our students for the real business world, solidified by our excellent placement rate in related accounting employment.”

To enroll in Southeast Tech’s online accounting program, visit the Apply for Admission to Southeast Technical page and follow the on-screen directions.

SE-Tech students find camaraderie in online learning

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Criminal Justice Student Volunteers
Student volunteers organize bookshelves at the Winona Salvation Army.

Dispelling the myth that online learning is void of meaningful face-to-face interaction, Southeast Tech students recently volunteered at the Winona Salvation Army as part of their Sociology of the Family coursework. Among other tasks, students readied merchandise for customers by displaying donated clothes, sheets, pillow cases, and other linens on hangers. To freshen up stock already on the sales floor, students pulled all yellow-stickered items for an upcoming clearance sale and permanently removed older white-stickered items from the inventory.

Although students were allowed to pursue volunteer opportunities on their own, Criminal Justice student Julie Evenson proposed organizing a group project at the Salvation Army where students could make a larger impact as a group. Students also organized a potluck dinner at Lake Winona to socialize with their online classmates. Following the potluck, students participated in a study session to prepare for an upcoming test.

Criminal Justice instructor Greg Cady, who teaches the online sociology course, points to the importance of community involvement and service when studying topics such as human behavior, regardless of whether instruction occurs online or in the classroom. “I want my students to become involved and to immerse themselves within our diverse society,” Cady says.

Cady also notes an added benefit of service learning that is in line with Southeast Tech’s mission to educate for employment. “Research indicates networking with others is a key component for obtaining employment. Our students get to showcase their ability while contributing to our community through their volunteerism.”

Learn more about Southeast Tech’s Criminal Justice program and online learning opportunities.

Businesses commit matching funds to auto programs

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Auto Reunion Tom Brandt
Auto instructor Tom Brandt
announces matching gift.

Southeast Technical’s automotive programs received a significant pledge from area auto dealerships and businesses that will help the college enhance curriculum, upgrade facilities, and support other student success initiatives. Members of the partnership include Chrysler Winona, Dahl Automotive, Lewiston Auto, Motor Parts & Equipment, Sugarloaf Ford Lincoln and Walz Chevrolet Buick GMC, all of whom have pledged a combined $65,000 to match alumni donations.

In addition, auto program instructors Tom Brandt, Mark Hoehn, Paul Polzer, and Butch Bundy are prepared to match alumni donations with a gift of $19,000, a sum that accrued from personal projects the group has taken on over the years. In total, Southeast Tech automotive programs stand to gain $84,000 in matching funds.

Double your gift today by making an online donation to the Southeast Tech auto programs initiative!

Both announcements were made at the first class reunion for auto program alumni, held Saturday, June 18, at the Winona campus in conjunction with the Steamboat Days annual car show. Auto program alumni enjoyed catching up with each other, reminiscing about their days at Southeast Tech, and feasting on a special hog roast while talking about all things automotive. Alumni were also joined by Norris Abbts, auto program founder and administrator from 1948 to 1988.

Join us for Golf Monday August 1

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GolfThe Southeast Technical Foundation invites you to our 3rd Annual Alumni & Friends Golf Tournament!  

Golf event details:

  • Four-person team scramble
  • Prizes for 1st, 2nd, 10th, and last place as well as other hole events throughout the tournament
  • Registration begins at 11:00 a.m. with a 1:00 p.m. shotgun start
  • A picnic style dinner will follow the golf tournament

Thanks to the many generous contributors to our scholarship funds, the Foundation awarded over $120,000 in scholarship support to 137 qualified and deserving students in academic year 2010-2011. As the need for scholarships is as great today as it was last year, the Foundation is looking to raise even more resources to support scholarships to Southeast Technical College students. Your support will help us accomplish that goal!

For questions, please contact Casie at 507-453-2663.


Radiography students aid La Crosse area tornado victim

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Radiography students help La Crosse tornado victimFive days after an F2 tornado tore through the city of La Crosse’s south side, first-year students in Southeast Technical’s radiography program and instructor Robert Raasch partnered with Catholic Charities to help an apartment resident clean and vacate her unit, which was damaged by the storm. Damage from the tornado was severe enough that many buildings in the city were deemed unsafe; some were even torn down.

The group viewed their work as an extension of the Southeast Technical mission, which emphasizes not only providing high-quality instruction in the classroom, but also expanding classroom boundaries to real-world learning environments. “Even though this service had nothing to do with the technical aspects of radiography, we all still learned some very important life lessons. We can and do make a difference,” Raasch reflected.

Xcel Energy Makes Generous Donation to College

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Xcel GiftRed Wing/Winona, Minn—Minnesota State College-Southeast Technical received a $5,000 donation from Xcel Energy toward student scholarships at their annual Community Connections Golf and Dining event, held Thursday, May 28 at Mississippi National Links in Red Wing Minnesota. The gift was presented by Pam Gorman, Manager, Community and Local Government Relations to Kent Spaulding, Director of Institutional Advancement on behalf of the college foundation. 

"Xcel Energy is committed to the communities we serve including Red Wing and Winona, where we have a nuclear plant, a refuse derived fuel plant and two service centers," said Pam Gorman, Xcel Energy community relations manager. "We know that having Southeast Tech College in each community makes it a better place to live and work, so I am pleased that we support this valuable scholarship program.”

Director of Institutional Advancement at Southeast Tech, Kent Spaulding appreciates what Xcel Energy does for Southeast Tech students. “We are very proud of our relationship with Xcel Energy. As the college continues its outreach efforts, collaborations with industry and business leaders will be at the forefront of our work. Xcel has been a great benefactor and they are wonderful partners.  Our students, faculty, and staff appreciate all they have done for the college.”   

The annual golf Community Connections Golf and Dinner raised more than $12,000 in support of student scholarships at Southeast Tech. The Xcel Energy scholarship dollars will be awarded to students seeking support in Technology and Trade and Industrial careers college-wide.  Over the last ten years, thanks to generous benefactors like Xcel, the College Foundation has provided scholarships totaling more than $1 million. Rising tuition costs and increased financial burden continue to make the scholarship funding a priority of the college foundation.


SE-Tech announces Spring 2011 President's List

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Congratulations to the 445 Southeast Technical students who made the Spring 2011 President's List! To achieve President's List honors, a student must complete a minimum of 12 credits during an academic term and achieve a GPA of 3.5 or above.

View the complete Spring 2011 President's List.

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