Continuing Education Enrichment Classes

Looking for some fun? Come to Mid-State to learn something new or have a unique, hands-on experience designed to add some spice to your life. Meant for anyone in the community, these opportunities include fun special interest courses, learning for seniors, and much more.

Courses that include a hands-on item or some provided materials are marked with a Cougar Kit icon (in honor of Grit, Mid-State’s Cougar mascot). When you see the Cougar Paw Icon, this indicates that a Continuing Education Cougar Kit is available for the class. Arrangements will be made for curbside pickup of your Cougar Kit, or we may be able to send it by mail.

February

Computer Business User Group (BUG)! Exploring Computer Software

It’s the Mid-State Computer BUG! Are you looking to refresh your skills on some of the common office software applications from Microsoft, Google, or Adobe, or would you like to learn about features that might enhance your productivity and efficiency? Join our Computer Business User Group (BUG), which meets four times a month and will have an alternating focus on basic through advanced features in these common software suites. These classes will be dynamic based on user needs and will harness the power of a group of as we look at front-line or operational business needs and solutions through the lens of common software platforms. 

Tuesdays, February 1 - 22
Microsoft Excel 2019
7:30 – 9:00 a.m. • Online Live
Class #: 24522 • Course Fee: $50
Instructor: Sara Reimann

Tuesdays, March 1 - 22
Working in the Cloud
7:30 – 9:00 a.m. • Online Live
Class #: 24523 • Course Fee: $50
Instructor: Sara Reimann

Internet Security

Join an internet and consumer security expert with over 20 years of proven experience in an inquisitive night of tips and tricks to keep your identity safe online! With millions of consumers shopping online, keeping your identity safe in a complex online world can be intricate and cumbersome. Leaving an online footprint can be dangerous and easily exploited by hackers worldwide. Topics to be covered include two-factor authentication, VPNs, viruses, banking and credit card fraud, phishing, password security, and online safety. Join this class to keep yourself safe online.

Tuesday, February 1
5:00 – 8:00 p.m. • Stevens Point Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 26885 • Course Fee: $29
Instructor: Matt Meis
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Stevens Point Campus.

Nerd Herd After 5! Technology Basics 

Interested in exploring technologies like smartphones, tablets, digital picture frames, or voice assistants like Alexa and Siri? Want to know more about social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or Instagram? Could you use some pointers about keeping track of your passwords, safely browsing the Internet, staying safe from scammers, or how to cut your cable bill? 

Join the Nerd Herd After 5! This group will meet twice monthly to discuss current topics in personal technology. You don’t have to know anything to join in. We will all learn together, and the group will have input on future class topics. Join by the month, quarterly, or on a six-month plan. Each month you will receive a small Cougar Kit from the college. 

Tuesdays, February 1 and 15
Television on a Budget
5:00 – 6:30 p.m. • Online Live
Class #: 24418 • Course Fee: $20
Instructor: Sara Reimann

Tuesdays, March 1 and 15
Keeping Track of Passwords
5:00 – 6:30 p.m. • Online Live
Class #: 24419 • Course Fee: $20
Instructor: Sara Reimann

Chocolate: From Treasure to Treat

From cacao to chocolate, rainforest treasure to luscious treat, chocolate has been many things to many people over the years. Learn about the life cycle of the cacao tree, then journey through history to get the complete story behind the tasty treat that we call chocolate. From the time of the Mayans and Aztecs to pre-industrial Europe and finally to the present, explore how humans have used and processed these bitter tasting seeds. Finally, discover the role and impact of chocolate on the rainforest ecosystems where it grows. The best part? While you learn about this amazing plant and its history and test your knowledge of chocolate you will have plenty of samples on hand to try.

Monday, February 7
5:00 – 6:00 p.m. • Online Live
Class #: 24426 • Course Fee: $25
Instructor: Karin Davidson-Taylor
Cougar Paw Icon Continuing Education Cougar Kit

Income Tax Update

This class will review tax changes for this filing season. Additionally, this course will allow participants to prepare an individual return to illustrate quality tax return completion of Form 1040 and supporting forms and schedules.

Monday, February 7
6:00 – 8:00 p.m. • Online Live
Class #: 25877 • Course Fee: $25
Instructor: Bob Smith

Monday, March 14
6:00 – 8:00 p.m. • Online Live
Class #: 25878 • Course Fee: $25
Instructor: Bob Smith

Acrylic Pour Painting

Acrylic pour painting combines colors into abstract cell-like patterns on the canvas to create unique artwork without the use of paintbrushes or pallet knives. Students will learn how to mix color, use pouring medium, the importance of consistency, and how colors interact. Different pouring techniques will be demonstrated. Students will choose which style they would like to do for their personal project. At the end of class, each student will have their own one-of-a-kind finished work of art to enjoy. It takes several days for the paint to dry, so pieces will need to remain on campus for a few days. This three-hour class is great for beginners and anyone interested in trying a new painting technique; basic materials will be provided.

Thursday, February 10
5:30 – 8:30 p.m. • Stevens Point Campus
Class #: 25833 • Course Fee: $39
Instructor: Laurie Inda

Thursday, March 3
5:30 – 8:30 p.m. • Adams Campus
Class #: 25834 • Course Fee: $39
Instructor: Laurie Inda

Thursday, March 31
5:30 – 8:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus
Class #: 25835 • Course Fee: $39
Instructor: Laurie Inda

Thursday, April 28
5:30 – 8:30 p.m. • Marshfield Campus
Class #: 25836 • Course Fee: $39
Instructor: Laurie Inda

Overview of Quickbooks

QuickBooks is a relatively easy-to-use and affordable accounting solution for many small businesses.
You can track your income, expenses, and financial position by using this tool. This is designed for small business owners, managers, and bookkeepers. In-depth knowledge of accounting principles is not needed to be successful in this course. Basics of accounting principles will be addressed, including
double-entry bookkeeping, transaction analysis, adjusting entries, and financial reporting. Using
QuickBooks to enter information for a fictional company, this class will cover creation of a new file,
transaction entry, writing checks, reconciling bank statements, report creation, and data security.

Thursdays, February 10 & 17
1:00 – 4:00 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25875 • Course Fee: $57
Instructor: Susan Strautmann
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids Campus.

Chat with a Ranger

The US National Park Service maintains 417 National Park Service areas. The Service was established to “conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wildlife therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.” National Park Rangers work at national park sites to help protect these areas. There are different kinds of rangers who work at parks in a variety of positions that all work toward preserving and conserving these unique, natural treasures, and they have a wealth of knowledge and stories. In this series, participants will learn about different national parks, the park service, and the rangers themselves as they interact in live time with a uniformed ranger. After an introduction to the National Park Service emblem and meaning, the ranger will address questions and use props and presentations to share the ecology, wildlife, and history of the national park. Participants are asked to send questions to continuinged@mstc.edu one week in advance of the session date.

Homestead National Historical Park

A Day in the Life of a Homesteader
The Homestead Act of 1862 had far-reaching impacts on the United States, including western expansion, immigration, technological innovation, transforming the Great Plains into the “Bread Basket of the World,” and forever altering the way of life of American Indians. In this lesson, students will explore a day in the Life of a homesteader with a park ranger. Students will learn what it took to file a Homestead Act claim and how people survived to make a life and receive the patent for their land.

Wednesday, February 16
Noon – 12:45 p.m. • Online Live
Course Fee: FREE

Gateway Arch National Park

Lewis and Clark Expedition 
Join park rangers from Gateway Arch National Park to explore the cultures, landscapes, and animals encountered by the Corps of Discovery on their journey to map the newly acquired Louisiana Territory.

Wednesday, April 13
Noon – 12:45 p.m. • Online Live
Course Fee: FREE

De-escalation, Situational Awareness, and Proactive Crisis Response in Today’s World

Whether you’re at home, going to school, working at a job, attending church, enjoying your time off, or anything in between, this workshop will give you tools to better deal with safety and security issues such as workplace violence, disorderly subjects, people with alcohol or controlled substance problems, active threats, and a multitude of other potential crisis situations. Being situationally aware and de-escalating a troubling predicament are topics explored in an effort to be better prepared to handle potential crises before they start, or as soon as possible after they begin. Some of the other discussion topics include active listening, paying attention to what’s important, having a proactive and “survivor” mindset, response options, awareness of things that could be used as defensive and offensive weapons, and thinking “outside of the box.”

Dave Forsythe – After a career of over 30 years in law enforcement, Dave recently retired as a senior special agent in the Major Crimes Unit of the Wisconsin Department of Justice – Division of Criminal Investigation. Dave has also been an adjunct faculty law enforcement instructor at several police academies in the Wisconsin Technical College System for over 25 years.

Bob Wilcox – After serving for over 28 years in law enforcement, Bob recently retired as a Wausau Police Department officer. Bob has also served as a certified nursing assistant (CNA) and a police liaison at North Central Health Care for over four years.

Monday, February 21
8:00 a.m. – Noon • Wisconsin Rapids Campus
Class #: 25825 • Course Fee: $45
Instructors: David Forsythe and Robert Wilcox

Monday, February 21
1:00 – 4:00 p.m. • Stevens Point Campus
Class #: 25826 • Course Fee: $45
Instructors: David Forsythe and Robert Wilcox

Wednesday, February 23
8:00 a.m. – Noon • Wisconsin Rapid Campus
Class #: 25827 • Course Fee: $45
Instructors: David Forsythe and Robert Wilcox

Wednesday, February 23
1:00 – 4:00 p.m. • Marshfield Campus
Class #: 25828 • Course Fee: $45
Instructors: David Forsythe and Robert Wilcox

DesignPhiles

Have you been struggling to start your next kitchen, bath, or home office remodel? Don’t know where to begin? Well, look no further. DesignPhiles is a discussion of trends and good guidelines for planning a residential remodel led by industry expert Laura, a Wisconsin Registered Interior Designer with a background in commercial and residential design. This series of design classes will assist you in gaining the knowledge, skills, and attributes necessary to plan and budget for your next project. Each series will concentrate on individual areas of your interest. Our industry expert will help you think “outside the box” for all types of spaces with an emphasis on best practices widely in use.

Elements of Kitchen Design

The heart of the home is the kitchen, where style and function merge. This synthesis requires thoughtful planning and consideration of many elements such as activities, storage, location, culture, and more. This class will provide a broad review of planning and budgeting for a kitchen remodel.

Monday, February 28
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25807 • Course Fee: $49
Instructor: Laura Stroik
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids Campus.

Elements of Bathroom Design

From powder rooms to personal spas, the bathroom has evolved. Creating a beautifully functional space requires a strategy to devise an efficient or opulent layout. Taking time to assess needs and wants helps with planning and budgeting of your next bathroom remodel.

Monday, March 7
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25811 • Course Fee: $49
Instructor: Laura Stroik
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids campus.

Elements of Home Offices

More and more people are embracing remote work and self-employment. While challenges arise when working from home, a great home office strikes a balance between comfort and productivity. In this class, learn the essentials of designing and creating a productive workspace at home.

Monday, March 14
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25812 • Course Fee: $49
Instructor: Laura Stroik
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids campus.

Growing Older at Home

Staying at home is a wish for many older people. Planning for unknown concerns or potential health problems is difficult. Aspects of universal design help people live at home longer, and remodels can cost less than moving to an assisted living facility. This class will help one understand the design elements required to build that long lasting and comforting home for aging population.

Monday, March 21
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25813 • Course Fee: $49
Instructor: Laura Stroik
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids campus.

Combine four classes and save!
February and March dates

6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25821 • Course Fee: $180
Instructor: Laura Stroik
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids Campus

March

Painting and Drawing for Pleasure

Painting can be a way to relax or a form of self-expression. Students will learn the basics of drawing as a foundation for painting and will have the opportunity to observe the instructor demonstrating multiple painting techniques. Students will be guided to select an individual project. The instructor will accommodate all levels of painting skills, from beginning to advanced; will help students with ideas for subject matter, composition, color, etc.; and will encourage each student to develop their own painting style.

Tuesdays, March 1 – April 5
1:00 – 3:30 p.m. • Adams Campus
Class #: 25837 • Course Fee: $35
Instructor: Stephen Senechal

Photographic Composition – How to Take Better Photos

This course will help you understand different types of cameras, equipment, and camera functions. We will cover troubleshooting bad photos to better understand exposure and blurriness issues as well as learn about differences in light sources. You will learn the rules of composition and the language of photography in order to understand the best camera to meet your needs. This course is suited for the marketing professional looking to add to their skill set, the small business owner who wears many hats, or the general photography enthusiast.

Tuesdays, March 1 – 8
6:00 – 8:00 p.m. • Online Live
Class #: 25879 • Course Fee: $40
Instructor: Ann Ilagan

Intro to Knitting

In this beginner’s knitting class, students will learn to interpret a pattern and to select materials and yarn. Casting on, basic knitting stitches and processes, and finishing seams will be covered. Students will work on a simple project which they can take home. No experience necessary, and all materials will be provided.

Tuesday & Wednesday, March 8 & 9
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus
Class #: 25884 • Course Fee: $40
Instructor: Jane Rusch

Monday & Tuesday, March 14 & 15
6:00 – 7:30 p.m. • Adams Campus
Class #: 25885 • Course Fee: $40
Instructor: Jane Rusch

Introduction to Canva

As a part of this one-hour introductory course, we will create an account, learn how to utilize the design features offered in this platform, and begin designing! We will also discuss some basic principles of graphic design such as color, hierarchy, and typography. Canva is a fun and easy online tool that can help you design a wide range of things, including posters, social media posts, business cards, Zoom backgrounds, brochures, wedding invitations, and more. You can even upload and use your own photography in the design process. Canva offers a free web-based service, so the designs and projects you start on one computer can be accessed from any other computer or user-friendly app. 

Tuesday, March 15
6:00 – 7:00 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25880 • Course Fee: $15
Instructor: Desiah Melby
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids Campus.

Tuesday, April 12
6:00 – 7:00 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus / Hybrid*
Class #: 25882 • Course Fee: $15
Instructor: Desiah Melby
*Participants can join either virtually online or at the Wisconsin Rapids Campus.

Lure of the West from the Smithsonian Art Museum

Part geography and part mythology, the American West retains a powerful allure in popular culture. Explore depictions of the people, lifestyles, and landscapes of the 19th century West to better understand this dynamic period of history.

Tuesday, March 22
Noon – 12:45 p.m. • Online Live
Course Fee: FREE

Small Engine Rebuild

This course is designed to prepare learners to rebuild small engine assemblies. You will disassemble engines, inspect their components, and reassemble them according to manufacturer specifications. Two-stroke and four-stroke engine theory will be covered. You will also be introduced to engine rebuilding specialty tools and the proper way to use them in the rebuild process. 

Tuesdays, March 22 – April 19 (class will not meet on April 5)
5:00 – 8:00 p.m. • Wisconsin Rapids Campus
Class #: 25893 • Course Fee: $99
Instructor: Scott Engel


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