Baerwald selected to serve as interim president at Moraine Park Technical College

by dritger6. January 2015 13:59

The Moraine Park Technical College District Board announced that Bonnie Baerwald, who is presently the vice president of finance and administrative services at the college, has been selected to serve as interim president and will begin in this new role immediately. 


“Moraine Park has been fortunate to have so many skilled leaders within our ranks,” said District Board President Vernon Jung. “Bonnie Baerwald has provided a steady hand and exceptional financial acumen to her work at Moraine Park over the years, and we are excited to have her varied skills as interim president. Her work style is highly collaborative and her dedication to Moraine Park is second to none, so I am certain that our students, faculty, and staff, as well as the external community, will be energized by her leadership. Bonnie will continue to carry our vision and mission forward, moving Moraine Park in a positive direction.” 

Baerwald has been with Moraine Park since 1993, joining the college as senior accountant. Over the years, she has also served as financial services manager and vice president of financial management before being named to her most recent position as vice president of finance and administrative services in 2007.

Baerwald has provided vision and expertise in leading Moraine Park’s finance and facility operations, including fiscal reporting, budgeting, financial operations, procurement, risk management, auxiliary services, facility operations, design and construction. Over the years, she has provided direction to the administration regarding fiscal and facility-related operations, including a comprehensive budget totaling $83 million in expenditures. Prior to joining Moraine Park, she served as staff auditor and then senior auditor at Grant Thornton, LLP, in Fond du Lac. 

“I am both honored and humbled to have been asked to take on the role of interim president,” said Baerwald. “Moraine Park has been my professional home for the majority of my career, and I am endlessly excited about the outstanding education that the college provides to the region and the state. I look forward to working with the District Board as well as our talented faculty and staff to provide the highest quality education to our outstanding students.”

Baerwald has an associate degree from Wisconsin Lutheran College, a bachelor’s degree in business administration-- accounting from the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater, and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh.  She has been a certified public accountant in Wisconsin since 1981. 

Baerwald has been recognized with a 2013 Professional Excellence Award – Community Involvement and a 2004 Professional Excellence Award – Administrator from the Wisconsin Association of Career and Technical Education. She is a member of the Wisconsin Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Government Finance Officers Association, is a member and past president of the Moraine Park Vocational Association and the Wisconsin Technical College System Business Officers Committee. In addition, she has served as a board member with District Mutual Insurance Company since 2013. 

Baerwald’s selection as interim president follows the recently announced departure of Dr. Sheila Ruhland, who accepted the presidency position at Tacoma Community College in Tacoma, Wash. and will begin in that role in March. Dr. Ruhland joined Moraine Park in July 2011, and during her tenure helped the college achieve its mission of innovative education for an evolving workforce and community.

Moraine Park Technical College was established in 1912, and is one of 16 technical college districts that make up the Wisconsin Technical College System. With campuses in Beaver Dam, Fond du Lac and West Bend, Wis. and regional centers in Jackson and Ripon, Wis., Moraine Park offers more than 100 associate of applied science degrees, technical diplomas, apprenticeships and certificates delivered in a variety of formats — classroom, online and blended. Training and technical assistance for businesses is also offered. To find out more about Moraine Park, visit


Ruhland accepts presidency at Tacoma Community College

by dritger19. December 2014 11:04

The Moraine Park Technical College District Board announced Moraine Park President Dr. Sheila Ruhland has verbally accepted the presidency position at Tacoma Community College in Tacoma, Wash., and will be leaving the College to take on her new role March 9.


According to Moraine Park Board President Vernon Jung, interim leadership will be named early next year. 

Dr. Ruhland joined Moraine Park in July 2011, and during this time helped the college achieve its mission of innovative education for an evolving workforce and community. “There have been many challenges at both an economic level as well as legislatively, and Dr. Ruhland has been able to meet those challenges and achieve the goals we set for her,” said Jung. “She was very student-focused and data driven, which was a definite plus when focusing on outcomes.”  

According to Jung, Dr. Ruhland accomplished much during her tenure. Under her guidance, the Forming Alliance to Cultivate Talent (FACT) initiative was established, student nursing scores consistently ranked above the national average on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX), ground was broken on the new student services wing for the Fond du Lac campus, the Jackson Regional Center was opened and a revised budget input and planning process was put into place. Dr. Ruhland also had a strong legislative background, which helped the College gain support for the performance-based funding plan and she was able to secure several state and federal grants. Dr. Ruhland played an integral role in a successful year-long centennial celebration, which included the opening of a 1987 time capsule and the sealing of new time capsule. She was also instrumental in bringing then-U.S. Labor Department Assistant Secretary for Labor and Training Jane Oates to Moraine Park for a “Connecting Communities for a Sustainable Workforce” Centennial Summit. 

"I’m deeply grateful for the opportunity to lead Moraine Park over the last three years,” said Dr. Ruhland. “The community at Moraine Park has wholly embraced a philosophy of student success, which was a key goal after I arrived. It has been both humbling and rewarding to be a part of the students’ journey here, and I am blessed that they have been a part of mine.”

Moraine Park Technical College was established in 1912, and is one of 16 technical college districts that make up the Wisconsin Technical College System. With campuses in Beaver Dam, Fond du Lac and West Bend, Wis. and regional centers in Jackson and Ripon, Wis., Moraine Park offers more than 100 associate of applied science degrees, technical diplomas, apprenticeships and certificates delivered in a variety of formats — classroom, online and blended. Training and technical assistance for businesses is also offered. To find out more about Moraine Park, visit


Moraine Park service-learning project benefits Breast Cancer Recovery

by dritger19. December 2014 10:13

Through community support and volunteer efforts, the inaugural Pink Pumpkin 5K Run/Walk raised $6,000 for Breast Cancer Recovery. The event was sponsored by Moraine Park Technical College and Kiwanis of Fabulous Fond du Lac. The donation will support Breast Cancer Recovery's mission to provide environments for women breast cancer survivors, as well as women in all stages of breast cancer, to heal emotionally by attending wellness retreats.

Moraine Park staff and students, along with Kiwanis of Fabulous Fond du Lac members, presented Gail Riedasch, third from left, of Breast Cancer Recovery with a check for $6,000. Proceeds were from the inaugural Pink Pumpkin 5K Run/Walk held in October.

According to Gail Riedasch, executive director of Breast Cancer Recovery, the retreats are designed to help women find inner strength and experience the hope needed to live each day beyond the boundaries of breast cancer. “The impact is immeasurable,” said Riedasch. “This donation will allow four women to experience an Infinite Boundaries® retreat.”  

The Pink Pumpkin 5K Run/Walk, held Oct. 16, exemplified Moraine Park’s focus on service-learning, which gives students opportunities to participate in organized service activities that meet community needs. Brenda Schaefer, Moraine Park social science instructor and service-learning coordinator, joined forces with Jeff Stueber, business management instructor, to spearhead the event. It was Stueber’s business practice firm classes that coordinated marketing efforts and found sponsors, while Schaefer worked with six other program areas to integrate the service-learning component into the family-focused event. Schaefer and Stueber are also Kiwanis of Fabulous Fond du Lac members. “The service-learning and international education opportunities offered by Moraine Park expose students to professional and personal experiences they may not otherwise have,” said Caron Daugherty, dean of general education.

The donation to Breast Cancer Recovery was made possible by the 310 participants, 60 volunteers and numerous local organizations that came together to support the cause. For information about the second-annual Pink Pumpkin 5K Run/Walk, set for October 17, 2015, visit For more information about Moraine Park, visit


Moraine Park students host bake sale, gift-wrapping and raffle

by dritger11. December 2014 13:30

Moraine Park Technical College students are hosting a bake sale, 50/50 raffle and gift-wrapping station at the Fond du Lac Habitat for Humanity ReStore Saturday, Dec. 20, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Money raised will help fund a study abroad, service-learning trip to Jamaica through Moraine Park’s International Education program. 

Students participating in the study abroad program, from March 14-22, 2015, will have the opportunity to participate in service-learning projects in nursing and health education while experiencing Jamaican culture. 

The Habitat for Humanity ReStore will also donate 10 percent of their sales that day to support students participating in the program. 

For more information about the Jamaica study abroad trip and other international programs, visit or contact Amy Patterson at or 920-887-4470. 

For more information about Moraine Park, visit



Moraine Park Nursing Students Learn Cutting-Edge Technology

by dritger5. December 2014 15:50

Students in Moraine Park Technical College’s Nursing programs are among the first in the state to incorporate telehealth technology into their curriculum. The new technology, which lets providers and patients connect virtually, is a growing component of health care that allows patients to be comfortable at home while still receiving the level of monitoring and care needed. The school’s telehealth equipment, which was purchased in part with funding by a General Purpose CoreHealth Industry Grant, provides pre-licensure students with unique and new learning opportunities.

Moraine Park Associate Dean of Nursing Marylou Mercado, right, listens as Robin Konstanz, sales coordinator at GrandCare Systems, West Bend, explains the features of GrandCare’s telehealth monitoring system being used by Moraine Park’s Nursing program.

“Our students learning the telehealth system gain many new experiences and are able to recognize the value of using advanced technology to effectively care for patients,” said Marylou Mercado, associate dean of nursing. “They are using telehealth technology to conduct health assessments, determine physical care needs, assess changes in overall health and monitor prescription medication effectiveness.”
As telehealth technology continues to gain recognition in the health care industry, GrandCare Systems of West Bend and Moraine Park are working together to provide students with the equipment and training that will open doors for graduating nursing students. GrandCare Systems is a pioneer in the industry, providing the most comprehensive and fully featured caregiving technology on the market, and Moraine Park is excited to offer opportunities for students to learn using the newest technology.
"Advancements in digital health and patient engagement technologies will enable individuals to benefit from many of the experiences, previously only offered in a hospital setting," said Charlie Hillman, founder and CTO GrandCare Systems. "Moraine Park is proactively arming students with GrandCare's digital health, patient engagement and socialization features to allow a better, faster and more cost-effective delivery of care."
The College’s telehealth equipment has been integrated into its existing Simulation Center on the West Bend campus, which teaches students how to pin-point problems remotely using a variety of non-invasive sensors that monitor patients without impeding their lifestyle. Using the Internet, remote caregivers are able to track vitals, ensure medication compliance, view graphs, set alerts and communicate virtually with patients. When used in someone’s home, telehealth technology supports aging and healing in place rather than a hospital, nursing home or other health care facility. The technology also brings service to rural areas in a cost effective and efficient manner. As health care evolves, Moraine Park’s partnership with GrandCare will continue to provide cutting- edge educational opportunities for students and instructors.
For more information on Moraine Park’s Nursing program or any of its health care programs, visit                



Kannenberg receives WCBA Moraine Park Foundation Scholarship

by dritger5. December 2014 08:13

Lucas Kannenberg of Hartford, was the 2014 recipient of the Moraine Park Foundation Washington County Builders Association (WCBA) Trades Scholarship. Kannenberg will receive $250 each semester for the 2014-15 school year. 

Kannenberg is enrolled in Moraine Park Technical College’s Air Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Technology (HVAC/R) program. He said he chose the HVAC/R program while working with an HVAC technician on a construction site. After looking into the program at Moraine Park, he learned HVAC technicians are in high demand and the technology involved with the field continues to advance at a rapid pace. “I always enjoyed working with my hands and have worked as an apprentice carpenter and cabinetmaker. This field is vastly different than my prior experience but I believe my mechanical inclination will contribute to my success in this field.” 

Caroline Wilkes, who serves as secretary for the WCBA Board and is co-owner of Wilkes Plumbing, Inc., in West Bend, said the WCBA focuses on growing and supporting the building trades, which includes carpentry, HVAC, electricity, industrial wiring and more, within Washington County and the surrounding areas. “We believe it’s important to give back to the communities in which we live and work and providing scholarships is one of the ways we do that,” said Wilkes. 

The WCBA also awarded three $500 scholarships in 2013-14 through the Moraine Park Foundation to Justin Greif, Jackson; Thomas Elsinger, West Bend; and Lucas Breuer, Slinger; for their pursuit of careers in electricity, HVAC/R and plumbing, respectively.  

“We appreciate the WCBA, and all of the organizations, businesses and individuals who choose to contribute toward the Moraine Park Foundation,” said Dana Knebel, Moraine Park’s director of college advancement. “We have so many students who depend on financial support to be able to earn their degree and we are grateful to all of our donors.” 

For more information about the Moraine Park Foundation or establishing a scholarship, visit or call Dana Knebel, director of college advancement at 920-924-3225.


Fond du Lac High School hosts ‘Demystifying the Financial Aid Process’ - Free event to be held Dec. 3

by dritger24. November 2014 16:48

If the college financial aid process leaves you with more questions than answers, plan now to attend “Where Do I Start? Demystifying the Financial Aid Process” on Wednesday, Dec. 3, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Fond du Lac High School Performing Arts Center. 

This free event, sponsored by the Fond du Lac School District, St. Mary Springs Academy, Marian University, Moraine Park Technical College and the University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac, is open to anyone wanting to learn more about the financial aid process, including filling out the FAFSA form, financial aid strategies and timelines and scholarship opportunities.  

The event will wrap up with a chance for attendees to get their individual questions answered with a one-on-one question and answer period with financial aid representatives from all of the sponsoring colleges. All those in attendance will be entered into a prize drawing to be held at the event. 

For more information about “Where Do I Start? Demystifying the Financial Aid Process,” contact Jill Goebel, Student Services, Special Program Coordinator, at goebelji@fonddulac.



Moraine Park to host heroin crisis update Nov. 13

by dritger3. November 2014 09:41

Heroin prevention, enforcement and treatment will be the main focus as recovering addicts, law enforcement officials and counselors from the community gather to discuss the growing heroin crisis in the Fond du Lac area. The event will be held on Thursday, Nov. 13, at 2:00 p.m. in the cafeteria at Moraine Park Technical College’s Fond du Lac campus. The event is free and open to the public.  

Education and awareness can play a big role in substantially decreasing the likelihood of heroin abuse. Join the discussion and learn how to move the community forward through this rising crisis. The event is split into four sessions, and attendees are welcome to attend the entire event or individual sessions. The schedule is as follows: 2:00 to 2:30 p.m. – update from the Fond du Lac Police MEG Unit; 2:30 to 3:00 p.m. – two former addicts tell their stories; 3:00 to 3:30 p.m. – treatment options by Laura John from the Beacon House; 3:30 to 4:00 p.m. – question and answer session.

For more information about Moraine Park or this event, visit



Moraine Park graduates first class from Information Technology Careers program

by dritger31. October 2014 15:31

Moraine Park is excited to announce its first class of students from the Information Technology (IT) Interface grant recently completed the Content Management Certificate program. Those who received their certificate included: Moosey Goljenboom of Pickett; Amy Moore of Berlin; Sharon Prag and Catherine Roegner of West Bend; and Amy Vanden Boogaard of Fond du Lac.

Front (from left): Catherine Roegner of West Bend; Amy Vanden Boogaard of Fond du Lac; Amy Moore of Berlin; Sharon Prag of West Bend; Moosey Goljenboom of Pickett.
Back (from left): Anne Lemke, TAACCCT3 grant manager; Shawn McAfee, graphic communications instructor; Jeff Stueber, business management instructor; Dominic Garofalo, web developer instructor; Tammy Freund, web developer instructor.

The completion ceremony was a true testimonial of the skills learned by students in the program. The graduates presented projects they were involved in, all requiring extensive project management, team work and creative thinking skills. As part of their final project, Prag, Goljenboom, Moore and Vanden Boogaard grouped together to form a mock business named Design by 4. They used their new expertise on content management to market the Great Pink Pumpkin Run/Walk, which was a 5K run/walk organized by another Moraine Park business class to benefit women battling breast cancer. Design by 4 created the logo, website and social media presence, which played a huge role in recruiting the 311 runners and walkers who participated in the October 18 event. 

“The students were exposed to a real-world experience, working with many different stakeholders to prepare a product that would fit the needs of the client,” said Lisa Pollard, associate dean of business and IT.  “This is an essential skill needed in the Web Developer field, and these students did a fantastic job of using both their communication and technical skills to create the final product.”  

In addition, Roegner, presented a newly designed website created for J3 Engineering Group in Mequon, where she is currently employed. “This program has taught me how to build a better business and use new software programs,” said Roegner. “We have a diverse class that has also taught me how to collaborate within a team.”  

In the upcoming spring semester, Moraine Park is offering iOS and Android Web Application Development Certificates, with evening courses at the Fond du Lac campus. In all, Moraine Park expects to enroll 90 students in the IT Careers program over the three-year grant period.

Information sessions for upcoming IT certificates will be held on Moraine Park’s Fond du Lac campus on Monday, Nov. 17, at 1:30 and 5:30 p.m. and Thursday, Nov. 20, at 8:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Preregistration for sessions is recommended through Moraine Park’s website. 

The IT Careers program was implemented as part of a three-year, $995,662, TAACCCT 3 grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor to address emerging needs in the IT sector. This grant, which awarded a total of $23.1 million to 16 colleges in the Wisconsin Technical College System, is backing the statewide INTERFACE project, which has been established to help develop, improve and expand adult educational training pathways to careers in information technology-related occupations in Business, Information Technology, Healthcare, Logistics, Automation and Manufacturing.  

In collaboration with workforce development boards, job centers, advisory boards and local employers, the grant has allowed Moraine Park the resources to develop a new IT Careers program that provides specific training to adult learners, veterans and dislocated workers. Four short-term, targeted certificates are offered within this program, including Content Management, Android Web Application Development, iOS Web Application Development and Website Security. Students that complete these short-term certificates will have an opportunity to use those courses to ladder into an associate degree in IT-Web Development and Design Specialist or a technical diploma in IT-Mobile Applications Designer/Developer, both created through the grant.  

For more information on Moraine Park’s IT Careers program, visit



Moraine Park to host motivational speaker Lloyd Bachrach

by dritger31. October 2014 09:13

Moraine Park Technical College is pleased to welcome Lloyd Bachrach, a disabled gymnast devoted to inspire and motivate others to reach their ultimate potential, as a guest speaker at all three Moraine Park campuses. 

Bachrach will be speaking on the Fond du Lac campus on Tuesday, Nov. 4, at 11:30 a.m., in the cafeteria. He will also be speaking at the Beaver Dam campus on Monday, Nov. 10, at noon, in the cafeteria; and, on Tuesday, Nov. 11, at the West Bend campus at noon, in the Commons Area. The event is free to the public.

Bachrach was born with a congenital bone deficiency, and doctors suggested that he may never lead a normal life due to the severity of his disability. At a young age, Bachrach’s parents enrolled him in sports, which helped him develop positive self-esteem. At age 13, Bachrach was faced with the challenge of wearing artificial limbs, although he didn’t let that slow him down, and in high school and college he became a champion gymnast who competed against able-bodied athletes. In 1996 he competed on the USA Paralympic sit volleyball squad, and he is also an avid downhill mono-skier and a certified SCUBA diver.  

For more information about the event and Moraine Park, visit