The Board of Trustees of Iowa Lakes Community College held its monthly meeting Tuesday afternoon in Algona and received an update on the new Massage Therapy program at the Algona campus.
Mark Gruwell, Executive Dean of Instruction and Development joined with Theresa Waechter, Supervisor and Advisor for the Algona campus in introducing two students and an instructor.
Ashley Escobar, a nursing student from Titonka, shared her experiences while taking the evening and weekend Associate Degree Nursing coursework. She said the class times allowed her to continue working and also to have time for her family. She cited the Success Center staff as being very helpful.
Heather Carlisle, Algona, has been taking classes for pre-nursing since the summer of 2011. She has now chosen to go into the evening massage program. When she begins this fall semester, her 19-year-old son will also be in the same classes.
She called the Algona staff "amazing" as well as an "inspiration" to her.
Stacey Pegum, Massage Therapy instructor, teaches classes in Algona. She reported that next Friday, the first five students will receive their diploma at commencement exercises on the Emmetsburg campus.
The Algona Massage Therapy program was started in the summer of 2013. Classes are held from 5-9 p.m. Monday through Thursday. This allows students to keep their daytime job while learning new skills. Interestingly, some of the students are Registered Nurses. Those students chose to add the Massage Therapy diploma to their resumes to improve their marketability.
In addition, the Algona campus achieved the designation of a Blue Zones Certified Workplace.
Delaine Hiney, Executive Director of Facilities Management, informed the Trustees of progress on maintenance following a heavy downpour which caused water to enter the campus. Other projects which were discussed included a new tenant at Gateway North in Spencer, specifications for a roof at the Spencer campus, and progress on completion of the new Sustainable Energy Resources and Technologies building in Estherville.
Also on the agenda Tuesday was a report from Jolene Rogers, Executive Director of Community and Business Relations. She advised the Trustees of upcoming meetings and new staff members.
M.J. Dolan, the Executive Director of the Iowa Association of Community College Trustees, traveled to Algona to give an update on the group. She shared data about the value of community colleges to the growth of small businesses throughout the state.
The next regular monthly meeting of the Board of Trustees will be Tuesday, Aug. 19 at the Administration Building in Estherville.