Students, faculty, staff, family and community members gathered as the doors to Moraine Park Technical College’s West Bend campus opened on Sunday, Oct. 24, for the Fall Harvest Open House.
Visitors were greeted and encouraged to explore areas of campus including the library, the sustainability trailer, the nursing simulation center, Telepresence technology and the student life area.
Charlene Pettit told stories in the newly expanded and remodeled library. She retired from Moraine Park last December after serving as a librarian for 28 years and oversaw much of the library’s remodeling process. “I still love to come back for events like the open house,” Pettit said. She read fall harvest-themed stories and poems to the children who stopped by to visit.
Marge Kufahl, of West Bend, was surprised to see how much the West Bend campus had changed in the past ten years — she hadn’t been back since graduating in 2000 with a degree from the administrative assistant program. She and her husband stopped by to see the new renovations and were very impressed. “It’s so warm and inviting,” Kufahl said. “It’s a great environment for students to enjoy and learn in.” Kufahl added that attending Moraine Park was an incredible experience, “those two years were so much fun and also prepared me for the job I have today,” she said.
Amy Naber, recruitment specialist for Moraine Park, showed visitors around the sustainability trailer, parked outside of the student life area. Many attendees stepped inside to learn about Moraine Park’s commitment to sustainability.
The nursing simulation center was staffed with faculty from Moraine Park’s nursing program, eager to show visitors the five patient simulators and other new technology added to enhance learning experiences for students. Ashley Langenecke, a senior at Hartford high school, is exploring options for a future career in medicine. She and her family stopped by to see what Moraine Park had to offer. “The simulators were really realistic and must provide great learning experiences for the nursing students here,” Langenecke said.
Also impressed with the simulation center was Maranda Kurth, an 8th grade student from Kewaskum middle school. She and her father came to the open house because of Maranda’s interest in medicine. “I have always wanted to be a nurse and seeing the simulation center was so exciting,” Kurth said. “I like that you can figure out what you did wrong and learn from it, without hurting a patient.” Even though Kurth has some time before deciding where to go to college, she is pretty certain Moraine Park will be in the running. “This campus is amazing; I really want to go here!” she exclaimed on her way out.
The freaky-real Telepresence technology was another area for guests to experience. Telepresence is Moraine Park’s new interactive videoconferencing technology — allowing a face-to-face experience at a distance. Scarlett Maria, from West Bend, returned to campus after attending seven years ago; she plans to enroll this spring to finish her early childhood education degree. Maria was especially excited about seeing the Telepresence technology used to communicate with people on the Fond du Lac campus. “It reminded me of the Jetsons,” she said. “I can’t believe you can use it to talk to people in different countries as well — it’s very high tech,” she added.
The student life area was a hub of excitement with renovations to check out, live music by Shady Grove to enjoy and games for kids run by the early childhood education program. Chelsey Krofta of Fond du Lac won the candy corn guessing contest. For the coloring contest, Truman Robertson of Hartford won for ages 0 to 3 and Emma Wiedmeyer of West Bend won for ages 8 through 11.
For more information on the West Bend campus, contact Pete Rettler at email@example.com.