Governor Evers visits Mid-State for campus tour, K–12 updates
Gov. Tony Evers stopped in at Mid-State Technical College this week to take a tour of some of the new innovative spaces and programming that are available to district students and incumbent workers.
The Aug. 31 tour of the Wisconsin Rapids Campus highlighted new and updated campus spaces, including the college’s APEX (Academic & Professional Excellence) Center, Workforce & Economic Development division, Cosmetology classrooms and on-campus salon, ambulance simulator and Culinary Arts teaching kitchen and Gourmet Café. Emphasized throughout the tour were Mid-State’s dual credit programs and other K–12 pathways, customized professional development options for incumbent workers and recent state resources the college has received to serve the district.
“We are always grateful to have the opportunity to showcase Mid-State’s spaces, programming, initiatives and amazing students and staff to our elected officials,” said Mid-State President Dr. Shelly Mondeik. “We share Governor Evers’ focus on high school and the importance of developing high-demand career pathways for these students that capture their full potential to meet the workforce needs of the future, and we are proud to share the exceptional growth we’ve achieved in K–12 outcomes and relationships.”
Due to strengthened partnerships with area high schools, the college was able to double dual credit participation in 2021–22 compared to the previous year, serving over 2,400 high school students and resulting in nearly $1 million in college tuition savings. Mid-State’s dual credit academies also now allow students to start a pathway and, in some cases, complete a credential while in high school, including Construction Trades, Firefighter Technician, and Customer Relationship Professional and others.
Also on display for the visit were the college’s transportation shuttles, a new service implemented this fall to remove barriers for students needing to travel between Mid-State campuses. The shuttle service is free to students, made possible through a partnership with Wisconsin Automotive & Truck Education Association (WATEA) and funded through the governor’s State of Wisconsin Workforce Innovation Grant (WIG) awarded in January 2021. The $9 million award will provide funding for the college’s Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering Technology, and Apprenticeship (AMETA) Center construction, equipment and community-based student support services, including the new shuttle service.
College officials also shared appreciation for Evers’ match commitment on the federal Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) Build Back Better Regional Challenge grant application, which would help transform the forest products industry. Mid-State joined other coalition members including UW-Stevens Point, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Menominee Tribal Enterprises and Great Lakes Timber Professionals Association and the Sustainable Resources Institute, Inc., under the leadership of the Wisconsin Paper Council. The EDA is expected to announce award recipients in September.