Twenty-seven students from 25 different areas of study and program majors were nominated by the faculty as Outstanding Students. The Outstanding Student Awards Reception was held on April 23, and was attended by students and the instructors who nominated them. Each student received an Outstanding Student medallion in recognition of their achievement. I had the privilege of giving the opening words of welcome, and it was fabulous to see their academic excellence acknowledged and celebrated so directly by their instructors. I heard so many inspiring and exceptional stories of our students. This is a remarkable achievement for our students and I am proud of them.
We truly mean and stand behind our slogan
“Start here. Go anywhere." I firmly believe that our caring and dedicated faculty and staff strive unselfishly to partner with our students, guide and mentor them, and facilitate opportunities for success for all members of our college community. Caring for our students and our community is in our DNA at Saint Paul College.
Here's a short recap of a few of my activities this week:
Ramsey County Progressive Internship Partnership
Photo courtesy of Metropolitan State University
I attended the
Progressive Internship Program Celebration at Metropolitan State University an event honoring participating students and the unique partnership between
Saint Paul College, Metropolitan State University and Ramsey County. The
Ramsey County Progressive Internship program offers two-year paid internships for Saint Paul College students who plan to transfer to Metropolitan State University to complete a bachelor’s degree, and have an interest in working in local government. Commissioners and the two college presidents attended the event, and two students shared their internship experiences. Saint Paul College alum Kee Vang was the keynote speaker, and will be graduating from Metropolitan State University with his master’s degree. He inspired the audience by encouraging our students to be engaged and stretch their imagination. Four Saint Paul College students are enjoying their
internships with Ramsey County: Mohamed Ahme, Javonda Jones, Kye Myint, and Tom Martinson. You can read more about this Progressive Internship Program Celebration:
Progressive Internship Program partnership builds students for success in workplace.
District Energy St. Paul and Ever-Green Energy
I attended the
Ever-Green Energy and
District Energy St. Paul board meeting and we discussed strategic planning and their visions for the future, as well as new market, consumer, and technology demands/trends. District Energy St. Paul is considered the most notable in the U.S. for its use of renewable energy sources and implementation of energy conservation measures.
Phone conversations with Minnesota State Senators
I had phone conversations with two Minnesota State Senators from Saint Paul College’s district. I requested our senators to advocate for Minnesota State’s Legislative request as colleges and universities of Minnesota State provide affordable access to an exceptional education for ALL Minnesotans by escalating economic prosperity and mobility for members of our community.
Genesys Work Board of Director's Meeting
Genesys Works board and governance meetings. We discussed the Strategic Plan, board succession plan for Genesys Works as well as how to best develop a pipeline for Genesys Works alumni. Genesys Works alumni often continue their studies in our IT programs at Saint Paul College.
Neighborhood House Public Policy Meeting
I attended a Neighborhood public policy meeting. Neighborhood House is an intentional partner of Saint Paul College.
MSPWin Postsecondary Convening Meeting
As a board member of the
Minneapolis Saint Paul Regional Workforce Innovation Network (MSPWin), I had a meeting with the interim executive director of MSPWin to discuss current research, trends, policies and initiatives that could improve postsecondary success for students of color and low-income students in Minnesota.
United Hospital Foundation
United Hospital Foundation board member and chair of United Hospital Funding Priorities Committee, I attended a funding priorities and strategies meeting.
Public Policy Committee Science Museum of Minnesota
As a Board member of Science Museum of Minnesota, I attended a public policy committee meeting.
Central Corridor Anchor Partnership
I attended the
Central Corridor Anchor Partnership executive committee meeting to discuss the participation and engagement of Saint Paul College in Health Careers and Business/Finance Pathways, shared purchasing and services for transportation and procurement services. We also discussed strategic topics for the upcoming CCAP Retreat.
Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation Board Retreat
I along with the executive director of the Friends of Saint Paul College foundation and the Foundation team participated in a retreat with the board members.
Student Success Strategies Workgroup
I along with senior vice chancellor of Academic and Student Affairs and select college and university presidents and vice presidents of
Minnesota State attended a student success strategies workgroup meeting where we discussed the implementation of guided learning pathways.
Comprehensive Workforce Solutions
Along with five other presidents of colleges and universities of Minnesota State, we met about the development of a Comprehensive Workforce Solution model for East Metro using the expertise and resources of our customized training and continuing education units to strengthen Minnesota's workforce in a manner that is financially sustainable and market competitive. This model must enable us to serve more employers more proactively, more comprehensively, while delivering greater value.
Formative Conversation about Centers of Excellence
I had a conversation with a consultant from Minnesota State to discuss formative assessment of Minnesota State Centers of Excellence. Strategically located throughout the state, the Minnesota State Centers of Excellence drive workforce innovation through education and industry collaboration - and provide thought leadership on workforce development in their respective industries. For more information about
Centers for Excellence, go to
Meeting with Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce
I met with the vice president of economic development from the
Saint Paul Area Chamber of Commerce to discuss the active role Saint Paul College plays in our community with business, industry, and employers helping to escalate the economic mobility and prosperity for our students and community members.
Taiwanese Student Partnership with Metropolitan State University
I attended a graduation dinner for Taiwanese students at Metropolitan State University. Students from Taiwan enrolled in culinary and hospitality courses at Saint Paul College and then transferred to
Metropolitan State University. This is part of a growing international partnership that Saint Paul College is trying to expand.
In the News
Pioneer Press, 4/19/19:Opinion: Steve Grove: It’s time for Minnesota to invest in innovation
Now is the time to make another inflection by investing in our startup and innovation sector. The future of our economy and labor market depend on it. Steve Grove is commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development.
MinnPost, Jay Walljasper, 04/18/2019:‘Anchor strategy’: Twin Cities’ urban-revitalization methods stand out
This article showcases the
Central Corridor Anchor Partnership and how Saint Paul College and other institutions of higher education are actively engaged with our local community partners, promoting the equity and inclusion initiatives at the College. The
Central Corridor Anchor Partnership is a group of colleges, universities, hospitals, and health care organizations located near the Green Line in Minneapolis – St. Paul.
Jay Walljasper’s article reminds me of how truly fortunate Saint Paul College is to be located in the Twin Cities. Our partnerships and outreach go far beyond the borders of the City of Saint Paul. With such a vibrant metropolitan area where unequaled dedication and commitment by individuals, companies, agencies, organizations, educational institutions and Minnesota State, Saint Paul College stays current, and relevant. Our students truly benefit from all the expertise and support given directly to them and to Saint Paul College.
Finally, with spring semester finals coming soon, please share words of encouragement with our students who are preparing for their finals and working on end of semester projects. Positive words of encouragement go a long way for our students, and we all wish them well!
Wishing you all a relaxing and enjoyable weekend.
Rassoul Dastmozd, PhD
Saint Paul College