Sixteenth Week of Fall Semester 2018
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Saint Paul College A Community & Technical College

Sixteenth Week of Fall Semester 2018
Solo Piano Recital

This week we enjoyed two incredible musical events: Solo Piano Recital on Tuesday evening and the Winter Choir Concert on Thursday evening. I felt as if the performances were a wonderful, celebratory way of ending this semester and looking towards a new year.

Students presented their solo piano recitals, featuring works by Mozart, Chopin, Rachmaninov, Debussy, and many more. Their outstanding interpretations of these musical pieces were simply amazing, and I am in awe of their musical gifts.

The Saint Paul College Choir voices filled our theatre as they performed their Winter Concert, featuring choral music through the ages, Renaissance and Baroque to modern vocal jazz, folk music from Scotland and Haiti and even included pop hits of the 70’s. I marvel at the talent and expertise not only of our students, but our faculty and staff as well.

Every day our dedicated and talented staff contribute so unselfishly to ensure that our students’ needs at met. Kudos to all of our staff and faculty who collaborate to ensure that our students have a meaningful higher education journey at Saint Paul College and attain their goals.

Here’s a short recap of a few of my activities this week:

Strategic Enrollment Management

I along with the members of the Saint Paul College Executive Leadership Team met with a team of Strategic Enrollment Management subject ​matter experts to kick off the Strategic Enrollment Management initiative at Saint Paul College.

One Minnesota Transition Advisory Board

One Minnesota Transition Advisory Board

I along with the other members of the new One Minnesota Transition Advisory Board met at the State Capitol for the first time. This advisory board is led by Lt. Governor-elect Peggy Flanagan, and consists of voices from across the state to provide counsel and advice for the transition. The board will help Flanagan and Governor-elect Tim Walz fill “important roles in their administration, shape the state’s budget priorities for the next year, and provide diverse knowledge and experiences in facing Minnesota’s biggest challenges.” We discussed strategies and processes in selecting the leaders to fill executive-level positions (Commissioner, Deputy Commissioner and Assistant Commissioner) in state agencies and in the Governor’s Office. We also discussed budget surplus and three major salient themes that emerged from community listening session: People, infrastructure, and how government works.

Greater Metropolitan Workforce Council Board Meeting

Greater Metropolitan Workforce Council Board Meeting

I along with private and public sectors leaders attended the Greater Metropolitan Workforce Council Board meeting to discuss strategies that will benefit members of our communities who have traditionally been underserved and underemployed with a special focus on sector partnerships and career pathways to prosperity. Saint Paul College plays a critical role by training qualified talent for Minnesota’s economy and workforce shortage. Check out

College Leadership Meeting

I attended the College Leadership Team meeting along with members of the Executive Leadership Team to discuss college updates on strategic initiatives, as well as tactical matters concerning the governance and operation of the College.

Meeting with Grotto Foundation Executive Director

Meeting with Grotto Foundation Executive Director

I met with the executive director of the Grotto Foundation to better understand their strategic priorities and assess the feasibility of applying for funding to expand the Grotto Foundation Peer Mentoring program for the Power of YOU program at Saint Paul College.

All-Staff Meeting

I along with members of executive leadership attended the All-Staff Meeting and end of the semester celebration where I offered my gratitude to all of our staff and faculty for the great work that they do. We also discussed Comprehensive Facility Master Planning, as well as the Minnesota State Legislative Priorities during the upcoming biennium.

Meeting with Community Leaders

I met with two community members who are passionate about workforce training and economic development, and the critical role that Saint Paul College plays by training the workforce talent that Minnesota employers need.

District Energy and Evergreen Energy

I attended a District Energy and Evergreen Energy Board Meeting.

United Hospital Foundation

I attended a United Hospital Foundation Board meeting.

Prospective Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation Board Member

Prospective Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation Board Member

I along with the executive director of Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation met and hosted a prospective board member for the Foundation. Learn more about the Friends of Saint Paul College board

Meeting with Saint Paul Public Schools Superintendent

Meeting with Saint Paul Public Schools Superintendent

I met with the superintendent of Saint Paul Public Schools to discuss mutual initiatives of interest concerning to our respective institutions to better meet the needs of our students and our community. When our students and community do well, we ALL prosper.

Semester Start Meeting

I attended an ALL staff semester start college meeting in preparation of the upcoming start of spring semester on January 14, 2019. I am grateful to our staff who collaborate with our faculty by going the extra miles to meet and exceed the needs of our students.

Engagement and Advocacy Ad Hoc Committee Meeting

Engagement and Advocacy Ad Hoc Committee Meeting

I along with a team from Minnesota State and Trustees of Minnesota State Colleges and Universities met to discuss strategies for community engagement, as well as promoting advocacy from our community leaders and members for Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Legislative priorities.

Reimagining Minnesota State

I attended the first Reimagining Minnesota State forum. Reimagining Minnesota State is an initiative to envision Minnesota State’s next 20 years as the premier comprehensive system of higher education for Minnesota. Reimagining Minnesota State began last summer with a challenge from the chair of Minnesota State Board of Trustees to engage in thoughtful conversations about how Minnesota State can become a more nimble, responsive, and dynamic enterprise centered on enhancing student success through strategic innovation. Through Reimagining Minnesota State, we will learn together and respond to the three big questions that will inform the future of the system:

  • What is Minnesota State’s unique value proposition to the State of Minnesota?
  • How does Minnesota State foster a culture of innovation, collaboration, and partnership as we share responsibility for the achievement of our key goals?
  • How do we leverage our “systemness” to the benefit of our students and the state?

Partner Appreciation Open House for Surgical Technology & Sterile Processing Programs

I attended the Partner Appreciation event held by our Sterile Processing and Surgical Technology programs to thank the many companies supporting these programs: 3-Dmed Allina Health, Avante Medical Surgical DRE, Bellkato Corporation, Ethican, Fairview, HealthEast, MnHealth, MicroLine Surgical, MockMedical Tools for Training, Northern Scientific, Scientific Equipment Liquidators, Silentia, Surgical Science and Twin Cities Orthopedics. These companies are providing a state-of-the-industry environment in which to give our students hands-on training. It’s is because of these partners supporting our students, their learning environment and our faculty, that we are able to provide such excellence in these programs.

2018 Scholarship Gala

Finally, if you weren’t able to attend our 2018 Scholarship Gala last week, I would like to share the video tributes played at the event. I’m sure you’ll be as touched as we all were, as we heard from people who truly know of the outstanding character and generosity that Tom Nielsen, Alumnus of the Year, and Laura Beeth, Community Partner of the Year, both possess:

View a tribute to Tom Nielsen, Alumnus of the Year

View a tribute to Laura Beeth, Community Partner of the Year

I will end this week’s blog by offering my humble gratitude to members of Saint Paul College community. To our students, if you have not registered for spring semester, please do so – the semester begins in less than a month!

Have a safe and relaxing weekend.

Best, Rassoul

Rassoul Dastmozd, PhD
Saint Paul College

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