Category Archives: Student News

Industrial Engineering graduate puts degree to work in the medical device field

Photo of Dunwoody Industrial Engineering alum Tim TrembulakTwo months before receiving his diploma in Industrial Engineering Technology from Dunwoody College, Tim Trembulak accepted his first position as a manufacturing engineer.

The May 2018 graduate is now working for Coloplast in Minneapolis, a medical device company based out of Denmark.

“Dunwoody prepared me for my current position by providing excellent instruction in several relevant areas,” Trembulak said. “The various classes provided a solid foundation for my current position. I was able to contribute on the first day as a manufacturing engineer because of the practical, real-life learning at Dunwoody.”

Work ready, day one

In his new position, Trembulak works on new equipment validations, process improvements, and process simulation.

“Each and every day there are new challenges and opportunities to make things more efficient,” he said.  “While it is not my primary function to focus on continuous improvement, I am encouraged to think of improvements and ways improvements can be implemented which is something I really enjoy.”

This is the second Dunwoody degree for Trembulak. Prior to earning his bachelor’s completion degree in Industrial Engineering Technology, Trembulak graduated with an associate’s degree in Electronics Engineering Technology in 2016.

“I found the hands on practical approach the most beneficial about my education at Dunwoody,” he said. “I learned things that I could apply right away when I started my new position. Even before I finished the program at Dunwoody, I felt well prepared to start a role as a manufacturing engineer.”

Continuing his education

Trembulak isn’t finished with his education yet. He is already pursuing a master’s degree in manufacturing engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Stout, which he hopes to complete in the spring of 2020.

“As I continue my career I would like to move into engineering management. I am also interested in teaching down the road so that I can take what I have learned in industry and share some of that knowledge and help prepare other engineers for the field.”

Find out more

For more information about the bachelor’s completion degree in Industrial Engineering Technology, visit:  dunwoody.edu/engineering/industrial-engineering-technology/

Dunwoody students place 2nd, 7th in the Nation at SkillsUSA Nationals

Congratulations to Electrical Construction & Maintenance student Matthew Longendyke and Architecture student Karla Schmitt on their victories at SkillsUSA Nationals!

Longendyke placed 2nd in the Nation in the Related Technical Math competition, earning a silver medal. Schmitt competed in the Architectural Drafting contest, placing 7th in the Nation.

The national competition was held June 25-29 in Louisville, KY, at the 54th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference.

L to R: Paul Strother, Matthew Longendyke, Karla Schmitt, and Jeff Chase.

Both Longendyke and Schmitt won their state competitions earlier this year, earning them a chance to compete at the national level.

This was Longendyke’s second time competing nationally in the Related Technical Math contest. In 2017, he placed fourth overall.

SkillsUSA advisors Jeff Chase, Electrical Construction & Maintenance Assistant Professor, and Paul Strother, Architectural Drafting & Design Senior Instructor, accompanied the students.

If you are interested in joining the 2019 SkillsUSA team, please contact Associate Director of Career Services Rob Borchardt at 612.381.3322 or rborchardt@dunwoody.edu.

YCAP Student Profile: Cindi Young

A perfect place to pursue design

When Cindi Young toured the Dunwoody campus in 2015, she knew she had found the right college for her. Three years later – Young is still convinced.

As the third oldest of nine siblings, the dream of attending Dunwoody might not have been possible without the Youth Career Awareness Program (YCAP) scholarship.

Photo of YCAP Student in Welding area.

YCAP student Cindi Young shows off her welding project. The scholarship recipients spend six weeks at Dunwoody during the summer exploring different career fields and participating in hands-on activities.

Young was one of 28 students selected for the YCAP scholarship. The program is open to students who just finished their junior or senior year of high school.

The scholarship program includes a summer camp experience that introduces students to technical careers and helps prepare them for the college experience.

Finding Dunwoody

Young is a 2018 graduate of the Academy for Sciences & Agriculture (AFSA) High School and is enrolled in the Graphic Design program at Dunwoody.

“I took a tour and I fell in love,” Young said about her decision to attend Dunwoody. “I knew this was going to be my school because I never felt that way when I toured other colleges.”

The small class sizes and hands-on approach were also key deciding factors for her.

The summer program began on June 11, and Young said it has been helpful to explore all of the different Dunwoody program areas and get to know some of her fellow students.

Looking to the future

As a student who has always sought out leadership opportunities, Young said she also appreciated the leadership component to the YCAP program.

“I will definitely be getting involved with different clubs and activities at Dunwoody,” Young said. “And I’m looking forward to meeting new people.”

In addition to participating in hands-on activities on campus, the YCAP students also spend time visiting businesses and industry partners to get a feel for what it will be like to work in different fields.

Young is already looking ahead to her future career and hopes to start off as a graphic designer and work her way up to becoming an art director.

But in the meantime, Young is excited to start the fall semester at Dunwoody and take the next step in her education.

Interested in applying for the YCAP scholarship? More information about all of Dunwoody’s scholarship opportunities can be found online at: dunwoody.edu/scholarships.

Architecture students return from Dunwoody’s first extended Study Abroad Trip

Two-month stay in Barcelona, Spain, provides students with the experience of a lifetime

An experience that helped everyone find themselves. That’s how fourth-year Architecture student Josiah Hanka described his two-month study abroad stay in Barcelona, Spain. Hanka was part of a semester-long Dunwoody Study Abroad program this past spring.

Dunwoody launches first semester-long study abroad program

The program, a first for Dunwoody, consisted of ten Bachelor of Architecture students and lasted a full semester. The first half of the semester was spent in Minneapolis where students studied the history of Barcelona as it relates to design. The second half of the semester took place in Barcelona, where students stayed with host families.

The Dunwoody group left for Spain on March 13, 2018, and the program concluded May 18, 2018. Faculty members Molly Reichert and Reem El-Radi led the venture.

 Dunwoody students experience making in a new way

While in Spain, the Dunwoody group had the unique and very fitting opportunity to take courses in a Spanish maker space located in the Poble Nou district of Barcelona, ATTA33. Much like at Dunwoody, here students had access to a full wood shop, CNC router, laser cutters, and 3D printers as well as fully trained, expert machinists and technicians.

“Having skilled technicians help students use the machines made the process of making so much easier,” Reichert said. “It allowed the process of model making to be much more focused on design rather than troubleshooting.”

One of the students’ favorite projects created at ATTA33 was the individual interpretation, design, and fabrication of Modernisme, a culturally rich building ornamentation found in many Spanish arts, especially architecture. Students were to find an existing piece of Modernisme in Barcelona (pictured below) and redesign it, taking into consideration contemporary issues.

“The experience really affirmed my own design approach,” Hanka said, admiring the openness, liveliness, and attention to detail dense cities like Barcelona radiate. “The buildings there are beautiful works of art. The organic shapes, curves, floral motifs—it’s inspiring.”

Architecture students grow, gain confidence on trip

Several student projects inspired by Modernisme

During their stay, students were paid a visit by Minneapolis developer and urbanist Michael Lander of Lander Group. Lander led the students on a tour of Avinguda Diagonal, one of Barcelona’s most significant avenues, to discuss the differences between Minneapolis and Barcelona urbanism and how the two cities might learn from one another.

The students were also able to tour Architecture firms EMBT Architects and RCR Architects as well as several widely recognized spaces, including The Sagrada Familia, Mercado de La Boqueria, Santa Maria del Mar, Mercado de Santa Caterina, Walden 7, and the Museu Maritim.

A few other favorite events for the Dunwoody students included taking a Spanish cooking class and celebrating the Festival of Sant Jordi (an annual event where the entire city is covered in books and roses).

“It was very clear to me what this trip did for students,” Reichert said. “They developed and grew during their time there. Students told me the trip helped them gain confidence and provided them with a greater understanding of—and appreciation for—cultural differences. The students gained an understanding of design and urbanism in this new cultural context and now have an understanding of the impact of architecture and urban design on public life and our daily experience. I think it was a very valuable learning experience for them.”

The Architecture program is looking to organize a similar Study Abroad trip next year.

Learn more about Dunwoody Architecture.

Explore Architecture students’ photos and trip reflections in their 2018 Study Abroad blog.

High school grad is looking ahead to a career in the Electrical Construction field

Thomas Taylor won’t start his Electrical Construction & Maintenance degree program at Dunwoody until this fall, but the recent Bloomington Kennedy High School graduate already has a plan for his future.

Photo of student Thomas Taylor.I have my perfect plan,” Taylor said. “My plan is to graduate, work in Minnesota for five years, and then I’m going to move down to Florida and work in renewable energy – especially solar panel installation.”

A life-long Bloomington resident, Taylor said he wanted a hands-on education that provided a focused approach in an in-demand field.

“I never enjoyed sitting in the lecture classrooms,” Taylor said. “I always enjoyed more of the hands-on experience.”

He found what he was looking for at Dunwoody.

“[Dunwoody] was actually my first choice and the first college I applied to,” Taylor said. “I was just ecstatic when I got the acceptance letter.”

Taylor had heard about Dunwoody from his neighbor, an alum who works in the electrical construction field. And after hearing about the College, Taylor came to campus and took a tour with his father.

“I was like ‘this is perfect for me,’” he said. “It took one tour and I was sold.”

The hands-on shops and labs were a big selling point for Taylor, who enjoys the challenge of taking things apart and then putting them back together again. “I love seeing how everything fits together,” he said, adding that he is excited to get to work in the wiring labs on campus.

As for his career choice, Taylor was drawn to both the active nature of the job and the options an electrical construction degree would provide.

“That was another selling point – about why I wanted to be an electrician – I realized you can just do so much with it,” he said.

Currently, Taylor works as a detailer for Luther Kia of Bloomington. And in his spare time, he enjoys spending time outdoors, fishing, and snowboarding.

But even though Taylor has his vision for the future – he isn’t closing any doors.

“Being put on a career path where I know I’m going to have a plan later in life and I know I can be successful is something I’m excited for,” Taylor said. “But I’m also excited for all the different possibilities. Just because I want to work in renewable energy now – who knows! Something may come up along the way and change everything.”

Bachelor of Architecture graduate Gianna Madison to speak at Dunwoody’s 2018 Commencement

Photo of Gianna MadisonDunwoody College of Technology is pleased to announce that this year’s student speaker for Commencement will be Bachelor of Architecture graduate Gianna Madison.

Madison is a member of the College’s first Bachelor of Architecture graduating class.

This is not her first Dunwoody degree, however. After watching an older sibling earn a degree with the help of Dunwoody’s Youth Career Awareness Program (YCAP), Madison decided that a project-focused education was for her. She too successfully applied to YCAP and was able to earn a two-year Architectural Drafting & Estimating Technology degree in 2006.

At around the time Madison was graduating, Dunwoody launched an Interior Design program. Intrigued by the idea of focusing more on design, Madison decided to continue on at Dunwoody for an additional two years to earn an associate’s degree in Interior Design.

Following graduation, Madison worked as a Construction Project Coordinator for Anoka County. In 2014, she learned about another new Dunwoody program—a Bachelor of Architecture. Just three more years of school would transform her existing two-year year architectural drafting degree into a Bachelor of Architecture, allowing her to pursue the path to become a licensed architect. She had always wanted to be an architect and was already sold on Dunwoody’s approach to education.

This time, though, she would be going to school while working full-time. More importantly, she was now the mother of a toddler and was determined to be there for her daughter as much as possible.

Balancing all those roles wasn’t easy, but Madison has made it work.

“Sometimes I have to spend less time with my daughter in order to work late, sometimes I have to take a day off of work in order to complete a project, or sometimes I have to set homework aside over the weekend in order to attend a dance performance for my daughter,” she said. “In the end it is all about choosing what takes priority, at that moment, and why. The most difficult decision that I have had to make is giving up time with my daughter, which weighed heavy on me, but I have found it comforting to remind myself this isn’t forever, and I am doing this so that I can build a better future for my family.”

One thing that helped was receiving scholarship support, including being named a Whitney and Elizabeth MacMillan Scholar, as well as being able to participate in the Women in Technical Careers (WITC) program, which also offered a peer support network.

“The dynamic of the WITC group has been uplifting,” Madison said. “I was able to meet and be around other likeminded women — some of who faced similar obstacles — and get support on an ongoing basis.”

She also enjoyed her classes, including interacting with instructors, fellow students, and industry professionals.

“I have enjoyed being able to be a part of a team that has designed and built projects that are still standing today,” she said. “I have also appreciated being able to learn from instructors that are experts in the field of architecture.”

Madison’s favorite studio project was one located in a highly sought-after part of South Minneapolis.

“The project site was no longer affordable for the individuals who have lived within this community, even though, according to U.S. Census, most people were employed and had a college education,” she said. “Not only did this project address affordable housing and design, it also addressed common challenges that are currently present in our communities.”

According to Madison: “the most critical, yet fundamental, elements of this project included demographic research, which proved that people are not losing their homes because they are ‘lazy’ (as some would describe this community). In fact, this community is made up of the working middle class. Some individuals even work a second job just to make ends meet. The takeaway is that it is important to understand the bigger picture when it comes to building.”

Madison currently works at RSP Architects as a Senior Technician, where she is part of the Target/National Retail Team focusing primarily on Target exterior store remodels. She is excited to take the rest of the steps needed to become a licensed professional architect (including six exams!) and hopes someday to open her own firm that provides housing and related resources to low-income families.

First Dunwoody Architecture Class Prepares to Graduate

Six Dunwoody students to earn a Bachelor of Architecture degree May 17.

Six Dunwoody graduates will take a step closer to becoming architects as they walk across the stage May 17 at the College’s 2018 Commencement Ceremony. The students are the first to graduate from Dunwoody’s Bachelor of Architecture program.

The degree — which launched in fall of 2015 — is structured as a plus three stackable credential. Students enter the program with an Associate of Applied Science in Architectural Drafting & Design (or a related two-year architectural degree) and leave with a comprehensive, professional Bachelor of Architecture degree after the final three years.

Dunwoody is one of the only schools in the nation to use this structure.

Several Dunwoody Architecture graduates at a final project presentation in 2015.

Several Dunwoody Architecture graduates at a final project presentation in 2015.

“Graduating our first class is a significant milestone in the academic and professional communities throughout our region,” said Architecture Program Manager John Dwyer.

“This is the first new school of architecture in more than 100 years in Minnesota and the only Bachelor of Architecture in the state. The significance of this moment cannot be understated, particularly as our city continues to rapidly grow.”

A new approach to architecture education

 Since day one, Dunwoody’s Bachelor of Architecture has flipped the standard model of architectural education.

Instruction from actively practicing faculty; real, hands-on projects; and training on current design software and equipment gives Dunwoody Architecture students a more practical and focused education than traditional Architecture degrees — a selling point for many of the College’s students.

Tyler Bares mapping out plans for the IFP Minnesota project

Tyler Bares mapping out plans for the IFP Minnesota project

“I knew I wanted to be an architect,” soon-to-be Architecture graduate Tyler Bares said. “It was between a couple of schools and I ended up at a more traditional, 4-year college. And there, I was expecting to learn something that was not even mentioned. The first class was about the theory of design — it wasn’t what I was ready for. I hardly went to class, and I didn’t enjoy it. At the end of the year I was debating, ‘do I change schools?’ ‘Do I change majors?’ Because I just could not stand it. And that’s when I toured Dunwoody.”

The approach has also reassured students that what they are learning is valuable and relevant.

“Learning about the technical side of architecture — the software used and various building methods — before theory, makes students more employable early on,” Bares said. “I started my first job in the architecture field just after my first year.”

Ensuring students find jobs in their field during school — and immediately after — is another building block of Dunwoody Architecture. During the 2016-17 school year, each Architecture student received an average of 14.2 job inquiries.*

“Oftentimes employers prefer to hire Dunwoody students and alumni because they are confident they are going to be working with someone who has a solid technical education,” soon-to-be Architecture graduate Gianna Madison said. “The field of architecture cannot and should not be taught in a vacuum. The quality and richness of Dunwoody’s Architecture curriculum is invaluable.”

A look back

Over the last three years, Architecture students have worked on a number of real assignments with real clients, including:

Renderings from the Veterans’ Journey Home project

Renderings from the Veterans’ Journey Home project

Projects from these partnerships have ranged from developing construction documents for veterans’ housing, to building acoustic sound panels, to designing an eco-friendly kitchen and dining hall.

The students have also studied in culturally rich places like Cuba, Barcelona, Italy, New Orleans, Chicago, Boston, and San Francisco.

In 2017 and 2018, students and faculty contributed to hurricane relief in Puerto Rico.

It’s been quite the journey. And after five years, Commencement is finally in site for the Dunwoody Architecture graduates.

“I am elated to be graduating,” Madison said. “Graduation to me signifies that a huge milestone has been reached.”

And while a normal sleep schedule, time to travel, and no more homework are appealing to the grads, their biggest excitement is where their skills and talent will take them next.

 Ready for what’s next
Gianna Madison measuring space for the IFP project installation

Gianna Madison measuring space for the IFP project installation

“Currently, I am employed with RSP Architects, where I intend to continue to work full-time,” Madison said. “At some point in my career, I would like to open up my own firm that provides housing and related resources to low-income families.”

Bares will also begin working full time at his current employer, Alliiance, upon graduation. He hopes to use the knowledge and skills he’s learned to make a difference in the world — especially in places like Puerto Rico.

“After traveling to Puerto Rico last semester and working on a residential design project for a neighborhood—I’ve really grown to love the island,” Bares said. “The people there are so generous, grateful, and welcoming. In their current situation, they need help, and they want help. I really hope I can continue to travel there and help in whatever ways I can.”

This sense of global perspective and responsibility is just one of the many ways these students have made Dwyer proud.

“The graduates have a strong sense of the impact their work and decisions will have on a global community,” he said. “They are poised to apply this in the world as leaders in the profession. I know they will do very well.”

Dunwoody’s Commencement Ceremony will be held at the Minneapolis Convention Center Thursday, May 17, at 7 p.m.

Apply to Dunwoody Architecture.

*2016-17 Dunwoody Career Services Annual Report

Dunwoody College Commencement Ceremony May 17

Your guide to Dunwoody’s Spring 2018 Graduation Ceremony

Dunwoody College of Technology’s Spring 2018 Commencement is just around the corner!

Whether you’re a graduate or an attendee, here’s what to expect:

Graduate Reception

Date: Wednesday, May 16
Time: 5-7:30 p.m.
Location: Dunwoody College of Technology

Dunwoody’s Graduate Reception is a free and casual event for students and their families and friends. During the reception, graduates are encouraged to show their friends and family their work, tour the campus, and introduce them to their instructors and classmates. Hors d’oeuvres will be served.

Commencement Ceremony

Date: Thursday, May 17
Time: 7-9 p.m.
Location: Minneapolis Convention Center, 1301 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55403

Dunwoody’s Commencement Ceremony is a free and dressy event for students and their families and friends. During Commencement, graduates will be recognized by their degree earned, program in which they graduated from, expected honors (if any) and awards (if any).

Graduates will individually walk across the stage and receive a diploma cover. Official diplomas will be sent via first-class mail to the address graduates have on file.

Schedule of Events:

6 p.m. | Graduates must check-in on the ground level in M100. Doors to the Auditorium will open for guests.

6:40 p.m. | Graduates will begin lining up for the processional.

7 p.m. | Graduation processional begins.

About 8:30/9 p.m. | Commencement Ceremony will come to a close.

Parking and Driving Directions

The preferred parking ramp is the 3rd Avenue Convention Center (600) ramp. For more information on parking and driving directions, visit minneapolisconventioncenter.com.

Ticket Information

Tickets are not required for the event, and there is no limit to the number of guests you may bring. Large groups of guests wishing to sit together are encouraged to arrive early.

Graduates will have reserved seating. Family and friends will not be permitted in the graduate area.

Academic Attire

Every graduate must wear a cap and gown to participate in Commencement. The tassel should hang on the right side of your cap. Staff will be available to assist you in getting into your gown, cap, and hood. 

Special Accommodations

Dunwoody strives to accommodate participants or guests with special needs. Please note that wheelchair accessible seats are on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Wheelchairs and scooters may be rented for Commencement from The Mobility Shop. The Mobility Shop recommends reserving your equipment online at themobilityshop.com in advance to ensure its availability.

All equipment is picked up and returned on-site at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Cameras and Video

Guests are welcome to bring cameras to Commencement. However, guests may only take pictures from their seats and should not disturb those around them. Only official photographers will be permitted in the graduates’ area and in the area around the stage.

Professional photos will be taken during the ceremony. Proofs can be viewed and photos ordered at gradimages.com or 1.800.424.3686. GradImages will send proofs to the graduates’ personal email.

Guests are welcome and encouraged to take photos following the ceremony. A Dunwoody backdrop will be available.

Additionally, be on the lookout for the full video of Commencement, which will be posted to youtube.com/DunwoodyCollege.

Friendly Reminders

A friendly reminder to turn off your cell phone ringer during the ceremony. Please also refrain from bringing balloons, banners, signs, noisemakers, or any other items that block the view of guests.

For more information on Commencement, visit dunwoody.edu. If you have any further questions, email the Registrar’s Office at registrar@dunwoody.edu.