Beverly Wadsworth, Director of Advancement and Minneapolis College Foundation
The emerging brilliance of fall reminds me of your generous spirit and passion for supporting students juggling family, school, and life during these challenging times. Your gifts of time, talent and treasure are helping Minneapolis College students build a better life for themselves, their families, and create a more vibrant and equitable community for all of us.
Despite the many complexities over the past year, you stepped up in a big way! Your gifts to support students through scholarships and other direct student support, cohorts, programming and wrap-around services to address the needs of the whole student increased from \$770,000 to \$1.4 Million last year.
Let’s build on this momentum through our Give Back 2021 campaign beginning this October. Watch for more information in your mailbox, inbox, and on the College website. Our students' needs are great. Please consider that "little extra" you may be able to give this year to help a student move one step closer to her/his/their dream.
Curious about how your philanthropic goals fit with the needs at Minneapolis College? Want to learn more about the Power of Giving? Please call me at 612.659.6820 or contact me. I look forward to visiting with you - in-person or virtually soon!
Previous College Updates
As we begin a new academic year, I want to thank you for remaining engaged with Minneapolis College. As our pandemic response continues to evolve, I acknowledge how difficult it has been to stay connected. While our commitment to maintaining safety protocols remains at the forefront, I hope you will be able to attend an event or visit campus again soon. In the meantime, we have developed a virtual tour I think you will enjoy. Click here to experience our campus in this new way that many of our prospective students are choosing to visit.
Despite the challenges COVID-19 has presented to our faculty, staff and administration, we stand ready to welcome new and returning students to Minneapolis College this fall semester. Our mixture of online and on campus services and courses continues shifting to meet students’ needs. However, we remain committed to our mission to provide access to the transformative power of education in a diverse and dynamic downtown environment.
Our recently adopted five-year Strategic Plan identifies the following two priorities:
- Minneapolis College will eliminate equity gaps in educational outcomes.
- Minneapolis College will improve student outcomes from initial exploration to retention and graduation.
With these priorities guiding our work, we reaffirmed our institution’s role as an anchor in the community and our commitment to positively impacting socio-economic gaps.
Thank you, again, for the continued contributions of your time, talent and treasures to support our mission. Nelson Mandela said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” Together, we are changing the world!
Sharon J. Pierce, Ed.D.
With a grateful and humble heart that I write to thank you for your steadfast support of Minneapolis College, and its students through your gifts to the Minneapolis College Foundation. Your generosity has carried us through a difficult and challenging year of navigating a devastating pandemic and the murder of George Floyd, a tragedy that sparked unrest and a renewed commitment to social justice, equity and inclusion here and across the globe.
Over the past year the Minneapolis College Foundation has served nearly 300 students with scholarships and even more with Random Acts of Kindness emergency grants. Combined, this support empowered them to persist and succeed in their individual academic pursuits.
We added three new members to our Board of Directors this year. Kristin Hough Frame, Vice President and Senior Relationship Manager for Open Banking at U.S. Bank who is serving as Foundation Treasurer. World Welterweight Boxing Champion, Jamal James, and Vice President of Tax Services at Xcel Energy, Pete Mathieson are both serving as new directors on the board. We are looking to grow our Foundation Board of Directors by five more directors in the coming year.
The Foundation is proud to work alongside Minneapolis College to support the mission and strategic priorities of the College. To this end, we worked with the College to introduce a new scholarship application and award process and several new programs. Bridging the Equity Gap is an initiative aimed at eliminating educational inequalities and create opportunities for young inner-city men to elevate their socio-economic status. We have an ambitious goal to raise $2 million dollars to support this effort over the next five years.
Fundraising priorities continue to be focused on direct student support across the College. The Minneapolis College Scholarship and Random Acts of Kindness Emergency funds offset the costs of everything from tuition, transportation and fees to one-time emergency expenses to the technology tools and equipment needed to pursue a degree at Minneapolis College. This support truly makes a difference by increasing retention and graduation by as much as 98%.
Thank you for your continued support. I invite you to reach out to me, other directors on the Foundation Board or the Director of the Foundation, Beverly Wadsworth, to connect your philanthropic goals with opportunities at Minneapolis College. I look forward to seeing many of you again in person in the coming year.
President, Minneapolis College Foundation Board
Minneapolis College has announced the appointment of Trumanue Lindsey, Jr. as Vice President of the Equity and Inclusion Division. Lindsey has more than 15 years of experience developing and leading inclusive, diversity-related initiatives in higher education.
“We look forward to Trumanue advancing the organizational changes we are committed to making to create equitable opportunities and outcomes for our students,” said Dr. Sharon Pierce, Minneapolis College president. “While the entire College community is responsible for fulfilling our commitment to our Equity Statement, this role is designed to lead engagement efforts and learning opportunities relating to expanding our intercultural competency.”
As a member of the President’s Council and as the executive overseeing the Equity and Inclusion Division, Lindsey will provide leadership, programming direction and evaluation for diversity and inclusion initiatives and assist the College community in identifying strategies that will lead to addressing student achievement gaps.
Lindsey, originally from Saint Paul, Minnesota, currently serves as Director of Diversity and Multicultural Student Life at Kansas State University. His background includes providing vision, direction and oversight for the university’s multicultural student center. He also advises the campus’ Intercultural Leadership Council and Multicultural Student Organization Leadership Council. He earned his Master of Education Degree in Curriculum & Instruction and his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology Law, Crime & Deviance from the University of Minnesota with a minor in African & African American Studies. Several years of his experience in higher education are with other institutions within the Minnesota State Colleges & Universities system.
“I am excited to join Minneapolis College in this role. It is imperative that we are at the forefront of this work, especially during these times,” Lindsey said. “I hope I am able to bring new insight to the campus and I am looking forward to learning and growing as well.” Lindsey will start his work in July.
Spring Showers Bring Forth Renewal
Spring is always exciting for the School of Design and the Arts (SODA) at Minneapolis College. Each spring we gather to celebrate the achievements of our amazing students through concerts, exhibits and events. This year we are pivoting to use technology to help us. We appreciate that video conferencing and virtual galleries provide new opportunities to bring our student’s work directly to folks in our community and the Metro area. We agree with our followers that it’s much less hectic to pop into an art show on your phone or attend part of a Jazz performance virtually than it is to drive onto campus.
Through our virtual exhibits, we invite all of you to meet the students in our Career and Technical programs; Web and Front-End Development, Graphic Design, Photography and Digital Imaging. And, I know everyone is excited to see the Apparel Technologies Fashion show in May. While these events are always a collaboration between programs, we are especially proud of the cross-pollination between our departments this year. We have students, faculty and staff as photographers, designers and models. Instead of a live show, we are creating a video that includes a behind-the-scenes look at not only the gorgeous garments but the flurry of fabric, make-up and assistance it takes to get the final designs to the runway.
Check the Alumni Events webpage to see updates on the SODA events.
Dean of School of Design and the Arts
FIND YOUR PASSION AT MINNEAPOLIS COLLEGE
At Minneapolis College, Career Services is dedicated to helping students identify their talents, core values, preferences, and interests. We have a variety of assessments that are free of charge to our students because of outside funding resources granted to the department. Assessments include CliftonStrengths and Core Values, the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), and the Strong Interest Inventory. These assessments have been instrumental in helping students learn more about themselves and how their talents, values, preferences, and interests can help them find a perfect career.
In the initial career exploration phase, we help our students research occupations and industries to obtain information on careers and/or career fields. Through their research, our students learn about the associated job responsibilities, skills needed, education requirements, job outlook and salary of these careers. In addition, we offer students career exposure such as job shadowing, company site visits, job fairs and employer networking events.
Career Services is integral to the students' college experience. If you want to join us in helping our students navigate their career journey, please consider becoming a mentor, providing work-related experiences, or funding resources. If interested in helping our student body discover their potential and find their true career passion, I invite you to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your support in ensuring our students find their passion through their college experience and into the job market where their dreams come true.
Director of Career Services
Celebrating Academic Success
The Academic Success Center at Minneapolis College is well known on campus for its commitment to providing a safe and comfortable learning environment that fosters respect. The center is committed to helping students learn more effectively and independently. At the center, we believe every student can succeed.
When classes shifted to an online format last year, our staff and peer tutors collaborated with students, faculty members, and departments to transition our services to the online educational environment. We employed a variety of technological resources, so we could provide virtual tutoring services in a range of subjects including writing, math, logic, biology, nursing and chemistry.
I understand it takes a great deal of courage for many students to ask for help. The Academic Success Center provides a safe space for students to connect on a peer-to-peer level. Students obtain mentoring and coaching to overcome academic challenges.
The Academic Success Center has 40 peer tutors, 5 volunteer tutors, and 4 staff tutors offering more than 1,340 hours of academic support to students. Special recognition is given for the superior professionalism, exceptional communication, versatility, empathy and reliability of our staff.
I am proud of the work of our students and staff. Without the hard work and dedication of the tutors, volunteers, and staff, the Academic Success Center wouldn’t be possible.
Director of Academic Success Center
Happy New Year!
I'm excited to join you in supporting the Minneapolis College. As the newest member of the Institutional Advancement team, serving in the role of Alumni and Constituent Relations Specialist, my hope is to expand our alumni and friends network and engage you in volunteer programs and opportunities that will build affinity for and engagement with the college.
I'm energized by the strategic direction of the college and it's commitment to the community. This new year brings opportunities for unique and meaningful ways to support students, leverage philanthropy and build a more equitable and inclusive community. Later this month, we will celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the official launch of our Bridging the Equity Gap Initiative.
Minneapolis College will continue to be an integral partner in the transformative power of education, creating pathways for underrepresented individuals to better themselves, their families and our community.
To successfully impact change, we need to call on everyone in our Minneapolis College community. I encourage you to connect using our survey form and consider how to engage or share your story. Please visit the Alumni and Friends webpage to see how you can support our college's mission to provide accessible and transformative educational opportunities in a diverse environment unlike any other in the area.
I look forward to connecting and working with you.
Alumni & Constituent Relations Specialist
Dear Donors and Partners:
As the fall semester is coming to an end, we appreciate your continued support of students during this challenging year.
Minneapolis College values the work of organizations that make assess to a college education possible, especially for students who are traditionally underserved and underrepresented.
We value the relationships that support collaborative student support and help ensure students progress on their higher education journeys. In addition to support systems and resources offered to all students, Minneapolis College is committed to our external partnerships that support students through graduation and beyond.
As you think about the opportunity to continue supporting students on their journey, consider engaging as a student success partner.
To join this student support collaborative, complete the Student Success Partner form. To learn more about how to partner with Minneapolis College, please contact me.
Heidi T. Aldes
Dean of Enrollment Management
Dear Donors and Partners:
We are grateful for the support you have provided our students. We appreciate your thoughtfulness and sponsorship of students utilizing the Minneapolis College Student Support Center. Your generosity and relationships have removed many barriers to allow our students to succeed academically. Your kindness improves the quality of life for our students and community.
The Student Support Center can provide many services to students. These services include but are not limited to counseling, resource and referral services, the student parent center, and helping resolve financial emergencies.
College can be a time of new beginnings and excitement as well as a time of transition, uncertainty, and change for students. Students experiencing difficulties in life and/or academics, can meet with a counselor where they can discuss issues of concern as well as personal and academic goals. Counseling services are free and confidential. Counselors offer crisis, individual, and group counseling. A free on-line mental health screening is also available to students. Counselors also offer monthly programming for students based on coping strategies, adaption, self-care and boundaries.
Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities (OSRR)
This office manages all student complaint and student conduct matters through systematic processes to ensure that students receive due process. The OSRR also has oversight for the Behavioral Intervention Team (BIT). BIT consists of college managers and administrators that receive reports of concern for students. The Team offers outreach for students exhibiting concerning behavior. Finally, the OSRR offers a mediation program, R.O.O.T. Resolving Our Own Troubles.
Resource and Referral Center (R & R)
The Resource and Referral Center connects our currently enrolled students with supportive community networks, resources and opportunities to ease obstacles interfering with their success. Through referrals, direct service and outside agency coordination, our students gain access, information and support to address specific needs and gain self-sufficiency. We connect students to community and government agencies, healthcare providers and other partner organizations to address their immediate and/or long-term needs and goals. Students gain enhanced knowledge of navigating the systems on and off campus, expanding their network of support.
The center currently is collocated with Hennepin County Services. A case manager from the county provides weekly drop-in services for students. The Center hosts community resource fairs and workshops throughout the year to explore, expand and strengthen ties to the community and provide important resources for students. The center has a well-established food pantry that serves students and their families.
Students are also provided free snack packs or lunches. Students can apply for free emergency aid to assist them in unforeseen circumstances. The center hosts annual school supply, winter weather gear, Thanksgiving meals, and Toys for Tots drives.
Students can receive the following referral and services:
- Emergency Shelter
- Supportive/Transitional Housing Resources
- Ex-offender/re-entry resources
- Child Care Resources
- Parenting Support
- Low/Reduced or Free Health Care
- Chemical/Mental Health Program Referrals
- County/State Benefits
- Free Legal Aid
- Transportation Assistance.
Student Parent Center (SPC)
The SPC is a comfortable place where student parents/guardians can study, use computers, attend our Student Parent Group meetings and other events or simply relax, while on campus. Any student parent/guardian of minor children, who follows the SPC expectations and rules, may use the SPC. Students may be accompanied by their children while using the Center or utilize the space on their own.
We provide child friendly activities and toys as well as snacks. The Center is not a daycare or drop-in site and children must always be accompanied by a parent or guardian. A lactation room and refrigerator along with lockers are available for student mothers.
In 2019 Minneapolis College participated in the #Real College Survey sponsored by the Hope Center. We learned the following overall basic needs insecurity rates for our students:
- 45% of respondents experienced food insecurity in the prior 30 days
- 60% of respondents experienced housing insecurity in the previous year
- 27% of respondents experienced homelessness in the previous year
- 69% of students at Minneapolis Community and Technical College experienced at least one of these forms of basic needs insecurity in the past year.
Your support has greatly impacted our students, their families and ultimately our community. The Student Support Center currently serves about 10% of the Minneapolis College student population. The collaboration with our many community partners has permitted us to provide a convenient one-stop shop of resources for our students.
Through partnerships with faith-based organizations, St. Marks, the Basilica of St. Mary’s and First Unitarian Church, we were able to provide free bag lunches to students twice a week. Our partnership with the local food shelf, Groveland, enables us to create an on-campus food pantry, which students can access once a week.
Also, our collocation with Hennepin County and strong partnerships with community agencies including Community Action Partnership of Hennepin County, Familywise, Inc., and Legal Aid has allowed us to offer on-campus services ranging from food support, housing case management, legal services, parenting education, and more. These services do not pause during the winter and summer school breaks. We found that our most vulnerable students have the highest needs during this time; therefore, we continue to provide our services year-round.
We rely on grants and donations to provide student resources and support. Currently our student Outreach Coordinator is a part time position funded through grant and student life dollars. We need to provide better student service when it comes to housing. We have a need and desire to gain a student housing coordinator.
This coordinator will help current students in the housing market. They would work with students and community members to develop connections and advocate for the housing needs of students. In addition, they would work with property managers and landlords to create greater access to housing for students.
We invite you to be a partner in joining Minneapolis College in our efforts to raise funding to support our students with food, housing and other emergency needs. Please consider participating in Give to the Max Day. Your contributions can provide opportunities and aid students in reaching their academic dreams and goals.
Dean of Students
Dear Friends and Neighbors:
These warm, colorful days of October remind me of the old adage, "for everything there is a season". For many, moving into the abundance of Autumn is a time for renewed optimism, gratitude, and giving back. It is in this spirit that I write to thank you for your ongoing support of Minneapolis College. During this time of great change, it is essential to have a supportive and generous friend like you.
2020 is presenting all of us with new challenges. At the same time, it is offering us unique and meaningful ways to leverage philanthropy to build a more equitable and inclusive community.
The CARES Act allows taxpayers who previously could not deduct their charitable contributions, because they took the standard deduction, to deduct up to $300 of qualified charitable contributions on their 2020 tax return. For people who file with itemized deductions, you may take a tax deduction of up to 100% of your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) for contributions to qualifying charities starting in 2020. The new law temporarily lifts the limits on charitable giving from 60% of a taxpayer’s AGI to 100% for 2020.
The adjusted gross income (AGI) limit for qualified cash contributions was increased for individual donors. For qualified cash contributions made in 2020, you can now elect to deduct up to 100 percent of your AGI (increased from 60 percent). The AGI limit for cash contributions was also increased for corporate donors. Corporations can now deduct up to 25 percent of taxable income (increased from 10 percent).
Qualified contributions are cash gifts made in 2020 in which an election is made and is not made to a donor advised fund (DAF), private foundation, or supporting organization. The CARES Act also allows for an additional, “above-the-line” deduction for charitable gifts made in cash of up to $300. If you are not itemizing on your 2020 taxes, you can still claim this new deduction. All of these enhancements to 2020 charitable deductions make it a great year to support your philanthropic endeavors!
Minneapolis College is integral to building an equitable and vibrant Minnesota. The transformative power of education creates pathways for underrepresented individuals to better themselves, their families, and our community. In July of this year, the College introduced Breakthrough 2020 - Bridging the Equity Gap, a new program to educate and cultivate future leaders. We expanded our efforts to help students fund emergency expenses that might otherwise require them to drop out of school. The Power of You is another long-standing College program making college possible for many in our community.
These programs and more are supported by the generosity of donors. I invite you to join us this month as year-end giving gets underway with an event on October 29th. Students, faculty, staff, and donors will have the opportunity to connect and share their stories with each other. Visit the Alumni & Friends Events webpage to register.
Immediately following this event, we will kick off our Give to the Max fall fundraising activities on November 1st. These activities will continue through Thursday, November 19th. This year we will raise money for our Student Support Center. Connect with us online. Follow us on social media. Invite your friends to join in supporting Minneapolis College students.
Please contact me for more information about the strategic priorities of the College or to learn about other ways you can leverage the CARES Act to amplify your giving and support our students and their dreams. I can be reached at email@example.com or 612.659.6820.
Director, Institutional Advancement,
Dear Friends and Neighbors:
Minneapolis College Foundation takes the protection and proper use of your information seriously. We are writing to make you aware that a third-party vendor we contract with experienced a security breach. Blackbaud, which hosts our Minneapolis College Foundation donor database, the largest cloud software company in the world serving nonprofits, discovered and stopped a ransomware attack.
This incident did not result in access to your credit card information, bank account information, or social security numbers. Blackbaud has shared that they have no reason to believe that any data went beyond the cybercriminal, or that it was or will be misused, or will be disseminated or otherwise made available publicly.
After discovering the attack, Blackbaud’s Cyber Security team—together with independent forensics experts and law enforcement— successfully stopped and expelled the cybercriminal from their system. Some user contact information may have been exposed, including physical addresses, email addresses, and phone numbers. The incident may have also exposed information pertaining to your relationship with Minneapolis College Foundation such as giving history.
Based on third-party investigations by security researchers and law enforcement, we have no reason to believe this information has been misused, disseminated, or otherwise made available publicly. Nevertheless, we recommend you remain vigilant and promptly report any suspicious activity or suspected identity theft to us and to the proper law enforcement authorities.
To reiterate, no credit card payment information was compromised as a result of this incident. A more detailed description of the security incident, and the steps that Blackbaud is taking to prevent its recurrence, can be found at https://www.blackbaud.com/securityincident.
We sincerely apologize for this incident and deeply regret any inconvenience it may cause you. Should you have any further questions or concerns regarding this matter and/or the protections available to you, please do not hesitate to contact the Minneapolis College Foundation at 612.659.6820.
Director, Institutional Advancement,
Board President, Minneapolis College Foundation
Letter from President Pierce to Advancement Foundation
August 17, 2020
Dear Friends and Neighbors:
All of us at Minneapolis College hope you and your family are healthy and hope you’ve able to find moments of peace during this unusual and difficult time.
As we begin a new academic year, we are welcoming students to participate in courses and other activities in a new manner, mostly online. Our staff and faculty have spent the summer preparing to help our students adapt and thrive as we continue to deliver high-quality academics at an affordable price.
Despite the challenges 2020 has presented us with, the Minneapolis College team has reinvented processes and transitioned to many new ways of operating.
The following highlights recap this work:
- 500-plus employees moved to remote work
- 800-plus course sections moved to alternate delivery with approximately two-thirds of course sections being offered entirely online and more being offered using a blend of online and face-to-face classes
- Despite the rapid change in instruction modalities student success was unchanged Spring semester 2020 to Spring semester 2019
- Our Spring semester nursing cohort had a licensure pass rate of 94 percent, one of the highest in the state
- Our School of Liberal Arts and Cultures developed one of Minnesota State’s first zero-textbook cost Associate of Arts programs
- Minneapolis.edu has become our new ‘front door’ with fresh videos and a new, more engaging presence as students now see this as their primary portal to campus
- 200 scholarships were awarded totaling nearly $500,000
- New options were created allowing donors to select specific initiatives to support including the Breakthrough 2020–Bridging the Equity Gap Program, the President’s Excellence Fund and a Career Ready Mentorship Program
- We reaffirmed our role as an anchor in the community and in positively impacting socio-economic gaps with our Equity Statement
- Minneapolis College received the Inclusion Cultivates Excellence Award from the College and University Professional Association for Its Competency-Based Hiring Program
- We launched a new Digital Learning Program to provide students with affordable laptop leasing and reliable technical support along with a fund for donors to help support this important need
- Minneapolis College received and distributed $2.3 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to eligible students
For additional information about how we have planned a safe, gradual and limited return to campus, visit minneapolis.edu. This coming year, we will work collaboratively to create our next five-year strategic plan, and together we will build on our pledge to becoming an antiracist institution, understanding that it is a journey, not a destination. We will also demonstrate our excellence to the Higher Learning Commission through our Assurance Argument.
As an anchor institution in Minneapolis, our work is grounded in the success of our students and our renewed commitment to equity and inclusion. Together, we are changing the world, by supporting our community’s most vulnerable population in striving for higher credentials, better employment and to have a voice in the broader conversations that will create a better tomorrow for those who come after us.
Thank you for your support of our mission and our role in the community.
Sharon J. Pierce, Ed.D.