Category Archives: Normandale Community College

Two Minnesotans Named SENCER Leadership Fellows

Science Education for New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities (SENCER), works to improve science education by focusing on real world problems and, by so doing, extends the impact of this learning across the curriculum to the broader community and society. Recently, the organization selected nine faculty members and administers  to serve 18-month terms as SENCER Leadership Fellows. Two individuals from MNCC member campuses have received this honor: Dr. Richard Dunning, from Normandale Community College, and Dr. Linda Fuselier, from Minnesota State University, Moorhead.

Richard DunningDunning has undertaken a sabbatical project to develop student activities around Mississippi River related issues as a way to help students better engage in the class and in key local environmental issues. Over the previous decade he has developed and taught Environmental Geology, a course that relates the science of geology in relation to key environmental issues. Over the past four years, he has been the PI for an S-STEM scholarship program, work that has connected him to students from a wider range of scientific disciplines and has helped him appreciate some of the concerns they are dealing with.

Fuselier will continue to facilitate a learning group including faculty from Linda Fuseliereconomics, biology, philosophy, physics, and women’s and gender studies in their grant-funded project to design SENCER-based course modules for biology and physics courses. The group is working on a course designed around Red River Valley floods and a SENCER-based module on ultrasound techniques for an introductory Physics course, both of which will be implemented in the next year.


Hear from some of the fantastic students at the 2012 Student Civic Leadership Summit!

Simpson Housing Services: Normandale Community College’s Presidents’ Community Partner Award Recipient

Normandale Community College would like to recognize Simpson Housing Services for the Presidents’ Community Partner Award based on the long time, successful and positive partnership between our organizations.  The mission of Simpson Housing Services is “to house, support and advocate for people experiencing homelessness.” Simpson provides a multitude of services to adults and families experiencing homelessness from hunger and financial planning to assisting people with the process of obtaining permanent housing.  In 2000, Normandale Community College students began serving as overnight volunteers in the men’s shelter. The men’s shelter provides 48 men a bed for 28 days. Staff from Simpson provide their expertise to Normandale through educational programs, presentations and by serving on committees. This organization has helped students by providing opportunities and education that will prepare them for success in the workforce. Since 2005, 286 students have served 11,732 hours of service with Simpson. That averages one Normandale student volunteer in every other night for the last five years. We would like to thank Simpson Housing Services for such an amazing and impactful partnership!

Desmond George: Normandale Community College’s Presidents’ Student Leadership Award Recipient

Desmond George

Desmond George is a leader in the AmeriCorps Citizen Scholar Fellows program at NCC. He averages 25 hours of volunteer service every month. His initiative has created innovative programming that has influenced the campus. He is extremely positive and leads by example to inspire others to volunteer.

Desmond is the President of the Black Student Alliance and the Table Tennis club. He leads both with enthusiasm and passion. He organized Black History Month events on campus including keynote speakers, soul food dinner, and Remembrance March. Additionally, he leads the programming committee for the M3C program and he recently organized a very successful Teens for Jeans Drive. The drive collected jeans to be donated to homeless youth and their families. He is currently organizing National Volunteer Week and Earth Day events.

Desmond volunteers for 180 Degrees and has committed himself to spend a minimum of three hours every week for a calendar year with his mentee. He mentors a teenager and provides him with a safe place to address his needs, build self-confidence and self-esteem, develop leadership skills, and become involved in the community. He has also volunteered at Habitat for Humanity and Feed My Starving Children.

Normandale Students Help Make a Wish Come True

By Meghan Aanenson

Normandale CC students photo by Meghan AanensonIn honor of MLK Day, twelve Normandale Community College students gathered at Make-a-Wish Foundation to assemble wish bags for children who have been diagnosed with a life threatening medical condition.  After a wonderful orientation highlighting the organization’s history, the process of granting a wish, the critical role of volunteers, and the stories of incredible wishes granted to children around the world, the students were excited to start their projects.

Wish bags are brought to the child at the very first meeting between the family and Wish Granting volunteer.  This volunteer works directly with the family to help plan the child’s wish from start to finish. Filled with age-appropriate books, toys, and gifts, wish bags help the child open up and get comfortable with the volunteer.

The Normandale students also decorated boxes, each filled with a paper chain link, that are sent to a child’s home 30 days before their wish takes place. The paper chain is a great visual countdown; each day a link is removed until the day the child’s wish is granted.

So much of Make-a-Wish-Foundation’s work is driven by volunteers.  Because of the dedication of individuals and groups like the Normandale students, over 3,000 wishes have been granted in Normandale CC students photo by Meghan AanensonMinnesota over the past 28 years.

Mobilizing Students to Honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

By Julia Quanrud

In just a few days, Minnesota Campus Compact and seven of its member institutions will kick off a series of service projects to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter), Anoka-Ramsey Community College (Coon Rapids), Concordia University (St. Paul), Lake Superior College (Duluth), North Hennepin Community College (Minneapolis), Normandale Community College (Bloomington), and Saint Mary’s University (Winona) were all awarded a micro-grant from Minnesota Campus Compact to support student-led service projects that honor the life and work of Dr. King.

Students with banner

Concordia University MLK Day 2009

The first service project will launch on Thursday, January 14th, when students from Normandale Community College host a youth carnival for children at Ginew Golden Eagles, a program that helps American Indian youth make positive decisions through life skill training.  The following day, Normandale students will head to Richfield with students and teachers from Richfield Middle School where they will help ARC Value Village set up for its MLK Day Sale.  At the completion of their project, the volunteers will all have lunch together and reflect on their service activity.  On the official MLK Day Holiday (1/18/10), Normandale students, led by a group of Citizen-Scholar Fellows students, will also sort gifts for the Make a Wish Foundation and organize and convert space for the Ginew Golden Eagles.

Students from the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity at Gustavus Adolphus College will also be hosting a service event on the MLK Holiday.  Together with community members, students will host activities and read stories that reflect the life and work of Dr. King to local elementary school students.  Lake Superior College in Duluth also intends to work with local school children on MLK Day, facilitating activities and projects that commemorate Dr. King’s Life such as reflection, poetry, and collages.

After a city-wide celebration of Dr. King on the 18th, students at Concordia University in St. Paul will be challenged on the 19th to complete service projects at various St. Paul community organizations.  Meanwhile, over in Minneapolis, students from North Hennepin Community College will be reading and acting out stories for patients at Minneapolis Children’s Hospital, while volunteers also help the children to create their own story books.

The North Hennepin Students and students from Anoka-Ramsey Community College will help pack meals for malnourished children across the globe at Feed My Starving Children on the 21st and 28th, respectively.  Students from Anoka-Ramsey will also be invited to reflect on their experiences and the life of Dr. King in a post-service presentation and reflection session.

Making cookies

Concordia University MLK Day 2009

The service activities will conclude with a month-long project in Winona, hosted by Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.  Working together with New Beginnings in Church, students from Saint Mary’s will help complete construction on a home for recently-released inmates.  Combining secure housing with social services, the facility promises to provide inmates with a chance to reenter society successfully.

In total, these seven campuses have organized eleven projects in seven cities spanning 46 days.  Together, they are working together towards mobilizing at least 500 volunteers across the state.  To learn how you can join the movement, email or visit