Friday, May 29, 2015

The Hard Truth About Soft Skills

Spring is in the air, summer is right around the corner, and classes are at an end. For some students, this means the job hunt is beginning; for others, it means a few short weeks of rest before the beginning of fall term. This generation of higher education seekers is finding it more and more difficult to carve out a place in the job market. There are a few different reasons that today’s young adults are having a harder time than their predecessors such as mountains of debt and a tougher economy, but the real reason may be harder to swallow; a generation that lacks soft skills.

Communication skills that govern an office setting (otherwise known as soft skills) include group collaboration, active listening, and the ability to carry on a conversation, and are the most sought-after and lacked skills in the current job market. That is why it is important to brush up on your communication skills before graduation or attending that first big interview.

If you happen to be in the process of pursuing a degree, consider taking a few extra communications classes in your collegiate career. For example, each college student should undergo at least one public speaking class to hone in their skills. If you are uncomfortable with public speaking, take two or three. Ethics and certain law classes pertaining to your field are helpful in developing soft skills as well. Take a look at all the available classes offered to you- becoming knowledgeable in your area of field goes beyond the required class list.

If you have recently graduated, now is the perfect time to brush up on those soft skills before entering an interview. Eye contact, attentiveness, and active listening are key in any interview situation. Don’t just imply your skills, show your potential employer that you are aware of and understand the workings of everyday office life, and they will be much more eager to hire you.

Another great option to expand your communication skills is taking on an internship. Usually an internship means little or no pay, but they are a perfect way to gain interpersonal skills. It also shows employers that you are dedicated enough to put in the work before reaping the benefits.

Millennials hear it over and over again- they’re all addicted to technology and have lost the skill involved with one-on-one human interaction. The sad truth is that, addiction or no, many of today’s generation have not naturally developed the skills that previous generations have grown up with and need to put in an extra effort. With technology driving our culture, personal skills will continue to be an added benefit to newly job-searching students and will ultimately give them the leg-up on the competition.

Friday, May 1, 2015

A Need for Necessities

We have many necessities in our lives. Eating and sleeping are a couple obvious needs that we cannot live without. However, we also have lifestyle necessities such as our public utilities. One important public utility is gas, which provides our homes and businesses with fuel for heat and energy. This important necessity requires highly qualified construction and service workers to ensure the utility is working at peak performance.

Gas Utility Construction and Service

At M State, we offer a diploma program in Gas Utility Construction and Service. This program provides students with knowledge in maintaining and operating high- and low-pressure natural gas distribution. Currently, M State’s program is the only Gas Utility Construction and Service diploma program in Minnesota and North Dakota.

This program can be achieved in just two semesters at M State. Our affordable classes provide individuals with the opportunity to obtain a degree and enter the workforce in as little as nine months. Class sizes are small, so students receive a personalized education with hands-on instruction.

This field is estimated to have seventy-three current job openings, and it is expected to increase by over six percent over the next four years. Students can expect to make up to $63,000 a year in the field, with 50 percent of workers making about $42,000 a year. Openings are located throughout areas of Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.

Get Started With M State

For students looking to enter a rewarding and in-demand field, look no further than M State’s diploma program in Gas Utility Construction and Service. Visit our Gas Utility and Construction Service page to learn more about this program. Start your career with M State, today!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Receiving Your Tax ReFUNd

Tax season came to a close last week, and you may come to find your wallet bursting at the seams. After a year of school work, employment, and tuition, student tax refunds can come as a pleasant surprise. The refund range varies, but the possibilities are endless. This creates a new challenge: how on earth are you going to spend it?

There is no right way to spend your tax refund – although we can all certainly think of a few wrong ways. You may choose to save it or spend all of it at once. The great thing is that it is entirely up to you. We here at M State wanted to provide you with five suggestions if you find yourself struggling to decide.

1. Book a Trip


Sometimes we all need a quick getaway. Take your tax refund as a chance to explore the world. Depending on the size of your refund, you could spend it towards a trip out of the country or book a weekend up north. Make it more fun by planning a trip somewhere new as you near the end of the semester.

2. Buy a Car


Cars are a necessity, and you may have realized yours is looking out of shape. You can use your tax refund as a down payment towards a new set of wheels. It is important to remember to stay within your price range. You may feel rich now, but that luxury may not last.

3. Shopping Spree


Take a look through your wardrobe. Do you have ripped clothing? Are you missing a selection of professional attire? You may want to think about using your refund towards some new styles as you set off for the summer.

4. Pay off Bills


College requires a lot of time and money. This might have caused you to put money towards academics as opposed to your bills. So, use your refund as a way of getting back on track with your payments. The less debt after graduating the better.

5. Save Up


Who said you needed to use your refund now? If you are not sure how to go about using your refund, then place it in your savings until a need arises. After all, as the money sits in your savings, you will begin to receive interest on your refund. This makes it even bigger than it was before.

No matter what you decide to do with your refund, make sure that you do it for you. One way you can help yourself is by enrolling with M State Wadena. Our outstanding collegiate education is sure to lead you on a path towards success. That way, you will not have to wait for your refund to feel luxurious.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Network Administration and Security; Your Future in Technology

Your love of all things technology has catapulted you towards a career in this ever developing field of possibility, and Minnesota State Community and Technical College is the perfect first step to building an exciting and rewarding future in the technology industry.

Computer hardware and the software systems that comprise a computer network are placed in the trusted hands of Network Administrators, who are responsible for the intricate maintenance and management of these massive infrastructures. An exciting and ever evolving industry, a career in network administration is a career in progress and possibility, a direct dealing with both new and existing technology and a trusted and highly valued necessity in today's technologically driven culture. Tasked with upholding the day to day operation of essential computer networks, network technology administration is a consistently growing industry, with ever increasing career opportunities.

Offering an Associate's degree in Applied Science, Minnesota State Community and Technical College Network Administration and Security program provides students with the necessary skills in network support and maintenance within a business environment. Developing computer, network, and application software skills is the driving force behind our Network Administration degree, amounting to a 66 credit course load that will carry you into a steadily growing and evolving industry. With an emphasis on operating systems, evaluating network security methods, computer network design and utilizing IP communications technologies among many other skills, our accredited Network Administration and Security degree thoroughly prepares students for a fast paced career in the technology industry. A high impact program designed to provide you with hands on learning in a condensed amount of time, our associates degree allows you to put the skills you've acquired into real world experience, right away. 

Step into our Enterprise Network Technologies class, and step out inspired to influence emerging trends and technologies. Take a seat in Network Defense, and find yourself in a career enforcing and protecting the software and sensitive information vital to every business's success. Explore Microcomputer Databases and pioneer the most effective database yet. Your options are limitless, your potential is recognized and nurtured, and your confidence in and dedication to your career will land you your next great adventure; the job of your dreams. Allow Minnesota State Community and Technical College to join you on your journey to a fulfilling and rewarding career in the technology industry, with programs available at our Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, and Moorhead campuses. Your future begins now, give us a call for questions and enrollment information today!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Fame and Fortune after a Two-Year Degree

If you’ve been near the internet recently, then you may have heard about actor Tom Hanks thanking his community college experience for his many accomplishments. In honor of Mr. Hanks, we at M State Wadena thought we would compile a list of other famous individuals that started from a community college.
1. Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks attended Chabot College in Hayward, California after lousy SAT scores and minimal funds for tuition. From there, Hanks went on to star in over 50 movies, and he has received 4 Golden Globes and 2 Academy Awards.

2. Clint Eastwood
Eastwood is an accomplished actor, filmmaker, and composer. Eastwood almost entirely gave up acting when he went to Los Angeles City College to study business administration.
Photo courtesy of Gage Skidmore
3. Sarah Palin
Before running for Vice President of the United States, Sarah Palin attended two community colleges; they were North Idaho College and Matanuska-Susitna College.

4. George Lucas
George Lucas is most known for his work for the Star Wars series. Before he became a director, Lucas went to Modesto Junior College to study anthropology.
5. Walter Elias Disney
Better known as Walt Disney, he attended Metropolitan Junior College, now known as Metropolitan Community College, in Missouri. Disney went on to create Technicolor cartoons and Walt Disney World -- just a fraction of the Disney empire that exists today.

6. Nolan D. Archibald
Nolan D. Archibald was once the youngest CEO of a Fortune 500 company while at Black & Decker Corporation. Archibald attended Dixie Junior College, which is now known as Dixie State College of Utah.

Want to add to the list? Comment below with more famous individuals that came from a community college!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

1Stop2Enroll is back for Spring 2015

What if you could plan your next year, or even two, in just one day?

1Stop2Enroll is the perfect opportunity for new students looking to jump-start their future. You can apply to Minnesota State Community and Technical College and take any assessment tests needed - in just one day.

Get the low-down on all of the options for financial aid and get assistance in deciding what route is best for you. With so many options to choose from, having a one on one conversation to discuss the options is critical.

After you have completed the application and placement tests (if necessary), you will work hands-on with one of our knowledgeable enrollment managers. Plan an entire year and get all of your questions answered in this one on one session! All of our enrollment managers are knowledgeable on each of the programs M State offers.
If you have questions or are you’re interested in learning more about the 1Stop2Enroll program, we would love to hear from you! Give us a call at (877) 450-3322 or shoot us an email at Visit our website for more information about Minnesota State Community and Technical College.
Planning on attending the event? Please come early and plan to spend the day. Remember to bring official sealed transcripts from your high school and any colleges you've attended along with your $20 application fee.
Our goal at Minnesota State Community and Technical College is to help you get in, get out, and get hired!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

M State Open House Showcases College Opportunities

Oct. 15, 2014
For Release: Immediate
Minnesota State Community and Technical College
Contact: Peter Wielinski – 218-631-7810 –

M State open house showcases college opportunities

WADENA, Minn. – Minnesota State Community and Technical College invites prospective students, parents and community members to visit the Wadena campus during an open house from 4-8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 6.

At the open house, visitors will be able to:

  • Learn about M State, watch program demonstrations, get questions answered by instructors and administrators, and hear from M State students
  • Apply to M State and get a $50 gift certificate redeemable at an M State bookstore when you register for classes
  • Check out the campuses by touring classrooms and facilities to see the learning environment, technology and equipment
  • Receive information on financial aid, scholarships and veterans services
  • Visit the eCampus CafĂ©, where coffee and treats are on the menu
  • Enjoy refreshments and giveaways
  • Enter a drawing for an iPad Mini or a 12-month single membership to Maslowski Wellness and Research Center

M State also will have campus open houses from 4-8 p.m. Monday, Oct. 27 in Moorhead; Tuesday, Oct. 28, in Detroit Lakes; and Thursday, Oct. 30, in Fergus Falls. The open houses also coincide with College Knowledge Month, which is marked by colleges nationally during October.

For more information about the open house and M State registration, contact the college’s Solution
Center at 877.450.3322.

A member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system, M State serves more than 9,000
students in credit courses each year in more than 70 career and liberal arts programs at its four campuses in Detroit Lakes, Fergus Falls, Moorhead and Wadena, and through eCampus. By partnering with communities, the college also provides custom training services and other responsive training programs.

Minnesota State Community and Technical College is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System and is an equal opportunity educator / employer. Upon request, this information is available in alternative formats.