DCTC Makes Learning REAL! DCTC Spring ’15 Semester Saturday Opportunities

Meeting and Event Management
Hospitality Lodging Management
Spa and Resort Management
Spring ’15 students taking courses in DCTC hospitality  programs will want to save these dates on their calendar. WATCH FOR UPDATES here AND on the news page of your online course site for location announcements.

If your course is listed here and published as online, then these are optional classroom half-days. Almost all “classroom” dates are at a hospitality or supplier corporation. Students take advantage of behind-the-scenes tours, guest lectures from real field professionals AND we work on course assignments.

SMGT 1160: January 17 at Rosemount campus, 9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1160: February 7, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1160: February 21, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1161: March 7, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1161: March 28, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1161: April 18, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30  p.m.

SMGT 1162: January 17, Rosemount campus, 1:00 – 4:30 p.m.

SMGT 1162: February 28, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1166: March 14, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1166: April 11, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1166: April 25, Rosemount campus, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1172: March 21, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1172: April 25, Rosemount campus, 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

SMGT 1175: January 31, location TBA, 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

SMGT 1175: February 21, location TBA, 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

SMGT 1260: January 24, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

SMGT 1260: February 14, location TBA, 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

DO connect with me and your other hospitality faculty members on LinkedIn:

Jessica Bartram

David Keinert

Rosealee Lee

Annette Marquez

Shawna Suckow

Let’s Celebrate Success! Lovejoy Finds Her Niche’

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In the Spring of 2013 while pursuing her Meeting and Event Management Certificate at Dakota County Technical College, Shannon Lovejoy began working part-time as a weekend wedding coordinator for Black Bear Crossings Cafe’ and Banquet Center. After earning her certificate and proving herself to be a valuable addition to the events team, Black Bear Crossings offered Shannon a full-time event management position which she accepted in August, 2013. Shannon is now marketing, selling and managing weddings and special events as well as coordinating the use of the three free community meeting rooms Black Bear Crossings has available for public use.

photo11_thumb Black Bear Crossings is located at the Historic Como Lakeside Pavilion in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The outdoor promenade with its beautiful view of scenic Lake Como is enough to wow up to 400 ceremony guests. photo1_thumbIn addition to being an award-winning wedding venue, Black Bear Crossings offers gourmet in-house catering. The third floor private banquet room accommodates up to 200 guests and has picturesque windows encircling the room offering beautiful vistas, no matter what the season. photo10_thumbSo, if planning an event or looking for a picturesque spot to enjoy a delicious gourmet lunch, a walk around the lake, or a fun afternoon paddle boating stop by Black Bear Crossings and visit Shannon. Black Bear Crossings on the Lake is located at 1360 North Lexington Parkway, St Paul, MN (651-488-4920). You may also contact Shannon on LinkedIn.

Are you a student or graduate of DCTC’s Meeting and Event, Hospitality Lodging or Spa and Resort Management programs? We’d love to cheer for you! Contact me on the form below or meet me on LinkedIn.

Do Efficiency and Efficacy Go Together?

Apparently the answer to this question is well known to the U.S. government. While I have endeavored to stay out of politics since my years spent lobbying in D.C., this item is begging for me to rant about it.

Katie Bascuas’ reports in Associations Now that the Stay in Place, Cut the Waste Act (H.R. 2643), sponsored by Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick, (R.-PA.) “calls on the Office of Management and Budget to use videoconferencing in order to reduce travel expenses by 50% from 2013 levels, or by the greatest amount OMB finds feasible, by 2017, according to The Hill.”

This is, of course, all about more reports of “lavish conferences”. The bill encourages videoconferencing to enhance communication and problem solving. Stated byproducts will be shortened project timelines, efficiency, improved collaboration and work-life balance. REALLY?

Could some conference attendance be virtual? Of course. But absolutely nothing can replace face-to-face networking. I am a staunch believer in the long-held belief that “When People Meet, Business Happens”. The organizations that cut their travel budgets during the recent recession found out the hard way that when you don’t engage in face-to-face interaction, a loss of collaboration and market share is inevitable.

Instead of work-life balance that the bill cites will be a by-product, I call for a modicum of common sense. Benchmark government conferences against industry counterparts. Supplement some travel with videoconferencing and other virtual platforms, but for goodness sake, let’s not keep swinging this pendulum of government reaction from one extreme to the other. Real jobs and real people will be impacted by this bill. And, sadly, productivity and effectiveness of many government initiatives will be decreased.

Meeting Professionals Salary Update for 2013

Meeting professionals have come a long way since the days of party planning. Convene’s 2013 salary survey results are a true reflection of the maturation of this profession that wasn’t even a profession* a decade ago. Check out the full report at the link provided above. Here’s a quick peek:


Of the meeting professionals surveyed,
75% received or expect to get a raise in 2013
9.4% is the average salary increase reported – that compares sizably to 2.3% last year
$77,711 average salary in 2013 – compares to $71,038 in 2012
$73,996 average salary for females (89% of respondents)
$108,482 average salary for males (11% of respondents)
Both genders report putting in long hours – 51% reported 41-50 hr/wk; 21% 51-60 hr/wk

*It’s been little more than seven years since the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) deemed this a profession. BLS now ranks “meeting, convention, and event planners” to 44% job outlook growth, 2010-2020.

Contact me to learn more about this amazing profession. Want to explore backfilling your education to advance your career in the field? Interested in discussing amazing interns and employees for your organization? Let’s connect. Meet me on LinkedIn or complete the following form.

The Millennial Perspective on Learning

keyboard_learn_key_400_clr_10240 (1)The Future of Learning According to Millenials captures the essence of a study just released by Millennial Branding.com. In her recap of the study, Samantha Whitehorne of Associations Now explains why Millennials gravitate to online learning AND that they also embrace hybrid opportunities that bring face-to-face learning segments to the mix.

All generations are represented in my college classroom and the majority of students want their learning opportunities delivered the same way. That is, how and when they can get it … and often online. The majority recognize that when they can participate in a face-to-face opportunity, their experience will be richer and the opportunity for networking greatly increased. That makes optional Saturday classroom days a hit!

I believe that Millennials had a great deal to do with this shift in education delivery. And while my first reactions were not entirely accepting of so much flexibility, my work to meet the students “where they’re at” has been well received by students of all ages. Whether they are working two jobs or homebound with sick children or on the road with their job, their learning is online and available. If, however, they can make it to a classroom on a Saturday, we’re there — with hands-on learning and networking. Let’s face it — learning in a group while sharing in laughter and experiences, is a lot more fun and enriching than the experience one has in front of a computer screen. Life happens and often it happens in sudden and unexpected ways. I believe that learning should be able to adapt whenever possible. Yes, I know that’s my opinion and not shared by all academicians but I honor any program that gives working adults the opportunity to develop their skills and grow their career.

How that relates to education provided by the non-profit association community can be tricky. First, let’s all keep in mind that the opportunity to network is typically in the top two reasons individuals cite as decisive factors when registering for a meeting, conference or event. And just about any association professional can point to a number of initiatives and even entire corporations that began as a result of that “meeting within a meeting” that happens in hallways and break areas at conferences.

I struggle with how that synchronous collaboration can happen online in a truly genuine way. Technology is (my opinion, again) not yet ready for what we need to provide virtually. So, while much of the education provided by associations and academia can be online, there is simply no replacement for face-to-face interaction. That’s probably why so many of my students drive great distances or even fly in to the Twin Cities, for Saturday classroom days.

One of my favorite books was published in 1998. Written by Stan Davis and Christopher Meyer, “Blur: the Speed of Change in the Connected Economy” looks at how the forces of speed, intangibles and connectivity converge and challenge business as we know it. The book may be dated, but the principles cited are alive and well. Back in 1998 the authors aptly described the “new economy — a world where the rate of change is so fast it’s only a blur . .. ” And so it is. We have blurred and will continue to blur if we are to succeed.

Millennials may have mandated this shift to continue blurring, but each of us benefit.

Let’s connect. Meet me on LinkedIn or complete the following form.

Slice of the Industry: Exploring the Many Facets of Your Hospitality Career

Mingle and converse with leaders in the field; gain insight into the industry and your own career path. We are thrilled to introduce the following panel of industry professionals for the June 3 “Slice of the Industry” Event.

Introducing the “Slice of the Industry” Panelists:
Sam Thompson, Founder of metroConnections
Bonnie Carlson, CEO of Bloomington Convention and Visitors Bureau
Gabe Clendenen, Senior Sales Manager of Saint Paul RiverCentre
Sari Lindeman, Sales Coordinator at Bellagala
Sara Kopcyk, Meeting Planner and Owner of Your Timeless Events

The recession is over and we know that many individuals are entering the hospitality industry or ramping up their career. This is your invitation to this FREE hospitality industry event. We look forward to seeing all of you at this fantastic event.

6-8 pm on Monday, June 3 at the DCTC Apple Valley Campus, 14200 Cedar Avenue, Apple Valley, MN, Room 200.

Kudos to the MPI-DCTC Student Club for hosting this event
Cheers to members of the DCTC Hospitality Alumni Network, Meeting Professionals International and Dakota County Technical College for their support.

Yahoo! Advises “Don’t let one of these thriving careers pass you by”

In the article, Booming Careers You Haven’t Considered, Yahoo! names three careers as fast-growing and in demand.

Software Developer
Medical Assistant
Event Planner

Yahoo! cites advice of Anita Bruzzese, a workplace issue columnist for USA Today and author of “Take This Job and Thrive”:

“I’ve heard some truly sad stories of people spending $80,000 on a college degree in a field that has very little demand now or in the future,” says Bruzzese. “They didn’t bother to do any research on their chosen field, and they are now saddled with some big student loan debt.” Bruzzese says many factors can impact job demand, such as the economy, population, and politics. And while it may be difficult to predict the political future, we do know something about job growth and demand from the U.S. Department of Labor’s employment figures.

It’s true. And thanks to the Internet, research is far easier than when the world was flat and I was trying to figure out my next career. A quick trip to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics and their Occupational Outlook Handbook confirms why Yahoo! considers these fastest growing careers. Students in DCTC’s Meeting and Event Management Program are excited about the growth of their chosen career. It probably also has something to do with the fact that students in the program are located across the United States.

Visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/rosealeelee/ for complete contact information.