Successful 2018 Friends of Saint Paul College Scholarship Gala
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Successful 2018 Friends of Saint Paul College Scholarship Gala

The 2018 Friends of Saint Paul College Scholarship Gala was held on Thursday evening, December 6, 2018. Evening activities included silent and live auctions, music and a fabulous buffet. The Gala was a tremendous success and exceeded last year’s fundraising totals.

The delicious buffet was prepared and served by Saint Paul College Culinary Arts students in the Event-Based Dining Capstone and the Dining-Room Service classes with Chef Sara Johannes, Chef Manfred Krug and Chef Pierre Rabbia. Saint Paul College alumnus Chef Brian Yazzie, ’16, prepared special Native Minnesotan cuisine for one of the buffet stations. Alumna Maryan Garane, was the master of ceremonies, sharing her personal story of triumph and success, from her early years as an immigrant to today, as a new graduate of the University of Minnesota. Current students and alumni graciously shared their personal stories about how scholarships and Saint Paul College have played such key roles in their successful journeys.

Minnesota State Chancellor Devinder Malhotra provided remarks and spoke of the commitment of Saint Paul College and Minnesota State in helping students succeed through quality, affordable education. A true advocate for Saint Paul College and the diversity of students, Dr. Malhotra thanked all at the Scholarship Gala for investing in the future of all students and the cascading effect it has on their families, the local economy and all of Minnesota.

This event not only raised scholarship funds for Saint Paul College students, but also recognized the 2018 Annual Award recipients Mr. Tom Nielsen, Alumnus of the Year, and Ms. Laura Beeth, Community Partner of the Year, in grateful appreciation for their service to the College.

Tom Nielsen graduated from the Saint Paul College Machine Tool program in 1984. Working his way up from the most menial tasks to current president of Mo-Tech Corporation, Nielsen has volunteered his time and industry expertise to Saint Paul College. He has served on the Machining/CNC program advisory committee, facilitated Mo- Tech’s in-kind equipment donations to the Machining/CNC program. He also has served as a board member and board chair for the Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation, helping guide the efforts to raise funds for scholarships and develop strategic plans. View a tribute to Tom Nielsen, Alumnus of the Year

Laura Beeth, Vice President of Talent Acquisition at Fairview Health Services, is a leader in the health care industry, with over 25 years of experience in talent acquisition/management, workforce development, and health care management. She was instrumental in starting the College’s summer “Scrubs Camp” program for high school students exploring health care careers. She has guided the College in establishing the Phlebotomy Certificate program, and securing clinical sites for the College’s Health Sciences programs. Appointed as chair of the Governor’s Workforce Development Board by Gov. Dayton, Beeth also serves as chair of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities Healthcare Education-Industry Partnership Council. View a tribute to Laura Beeth, Community Partner of the Year

Friends of Saint Paul College Board chair, Butch Howard, bestowed the designation of Director Emeritus to long-time Foundation board member, Mr. Larry Brandenburger. In addition to his many contributions on the board, Brandenburger and his family established the John Erik Brandenburger Scholarship in 2011 to help other aspiring chefs and to honor John’s memory.

“Special thanks to the Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation, and all of those in our college community involved in the preparation and participation of the Gala,” said Dr. Rassoul Dastmozd, President/CEO of Saint Paul College. “It truly is a college-wide effort, and I can’t thank everyone enough for all of their efforts! Thank you to all of our committed sponsors, donors, partners and guests for making it a wonderful evening and supporting our students.”

The Friends of Saint Paul College Foundation staff, David Kline, Executive Director, Anne Dresen, Major Gifts Officer, Logan Spindler, Development Associate, and Dawn Andrada, Administrative assistant, coordinated the Scholarship Gala. Over 50 sponsors and donors contributed to the Gala, with more than 250 guests in attendance who generously helped to exceed the fundraising total for student scholarships.

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