Sperstad honored by Events Industry Council

Janet Sperstad, CMP, Meeting and Event Management program director for Madison College, will be inducted into the Events Industry Council Hall of Leaders at an October industry event in Las Vegas.

 “I am deeply honored as this award encompasses one’s lifetime achievements and spans decades of contributions to the events industry,” Sperstad said.  “Madison College has been a major contributor to my success in shaping and influencing our profession.”

Sperstad is one of three industry professionals who will be honored this year. She was nominated by the International Association of Exhibitions and Events as one of the best and brightest in the industry.

Among her achievements at the college, Sperstad developed the first event management degree program in the US and contributed to establishing event management as its own sector with the US Department of Labor. Sperstad also built and defined competency standards and a body of knowledge of event management, separate and distinct from hospitality.

The EIC represents over 34 organizations and 105,000 professionals in the events, hospitality, catering, and tourism fields around the world.

Published June 23, 2017.

Natachu to present in Atomic Learning webinar

Technology Training Coordinator and Atomic Learning – Higher Education Learning Ambassador Alan Natachu will present at Atomic Learning’s #Hoonuitlive webinar on Tuesday, June 13, from 6:30-7 p.m.

Natachu will speak about Goosechase, an app that had a large role in this year’s Tech Academy. This app allows users to build and launch a scavenger hunt. Participants can work as a team or as an individual to obtain the highest score.

This webinar is free and open to anyone. Register here.

View a demo video of Tech Academy’s Goosechase app.

Published June 5, 2017.

Seidman named Educator of the Year

Lisa A. Seidman, Ph.D., adjunct instructor and recently retired Biotechnology program director, was named 2017 Educator of the Year by the High Impact Technology Exchange Conference (HI-TEC).

Seidman was instrumental in creating Madison College’s Biotechnology Laboratory Technician associate degree program in 1987 and has been a national leader in biotechnology technician education for more than 30 years. She was the principal investigator for the development of a post-baccalaureate certificate program and a technical program in stem cell technologies at Madison College.

In addition to preparing and teaching biotechnology courses, Seidman has authored major publications focused on preparing the technical workforce. Her textbooks have been adopted for use by community colleges across the nation.

She has also served as a mentor for new faculty and programs as part of Bio-Link and the American Association of Community Colleges’ MentorLinks. Bio-Link enhances biotechnology education programs by providing cutting edge professional development for instructors, by improving curriculum, by making use of technologies and by creating a system for sharing of information.

HI-TEC is a national conference on advanced technological education where secondary and postsecondary educators, counselors, industry professionals, trade organizations and technicians can update their knowledge and skills.

Published June 2, 2017. Updated June 5, 2017.

Sperstad presents at IMEX Frankfurt

Janet Sperstad, CMP, Program Director, Meeting and Event Management, conducted six presentations as a keynote and workshop speaker  kicking off IMEX’s theme and white paper she is writing this summer called “Purposeful Meetings.” The topics she covered focused on neuroscience and human behavioral research about how our brain and body works, its social drivers and how to optimize the meeting experience to produce more moments of meaning, creativity, learning and connectivity.

The learning outcomes of Sperstad’s seminar:

  • Learn what a purposeful meeting is and how it is the future of event strategy and planning
  • Explore the five pillars of a purposeful meeting and their role in creating success for your attendees and stakeholders
  • Get a sneak peek into initial research findings on purposeful meetings

IMEX is a worldwide conference covering all topics related to the Meetings, Events and Incentive Travel industry. The IMEX event Janet spoke at had 9,000 exhibitions and conference for European event professionals and was held in Frankfurt, Germany, May 16-18.

“I am so proud to say I nailed it!  No other college was on the main stage, talked more about, and leads the conversation in our industry than Madison College. Off to the airport and the last presentation of the school year – MPI Oregon!” explained Sperstad. 

Published May 22, 2017.

Writing Center recognized by Midwest Writing Center Association

The Madison College Writing Center was featured on the Midwest Writing Center Association’s website last week for its work at the college and in the community.

One of the Writing Center's new initiatives this spring is providing support to Madison College dual credit students in area high schools. The Writing Center tutors have visited schools everywhere from Middleton to Fort Atkinson giving group tutoring workshops. During the first week of May, dual credit students from Marshall High School came to the Truax Writing Center for a field trip. 

Published May 17, 2017.

Madison College Volunteer Center receives award

The Madison College Volunteer Center was recognized at the United Way of Dane County's Community Volunteer Awards Luncheon for Outstanding Service. 

The Center was honored for their volunteerism at five different agencies: Community Action Coalition, East Madison Community Center, River Food Pantry, Schools of Hope at Wright Middle School and Karmenta Nursing Home. Eighty-five students participate in the Volunteer Center each semester.

In total, they volunteered 1,700 hours, which is equivalent to more than $37,000 in wages. They are making a tremendous impact by helping children in after school programs, serving community meals, helping older adults with rehabilitation and more.

“The Community Volunteer Awards are a celebration of this notion. The 177 nominees represent a thriving culture of giving back that has the dual purpose of making our community a better place and bringing more people together,” said Renee Moe, president and chief executive officer of the United Way of Dane County.

Published May 15, 2017. Updated August 11, 2017.

Student receives Student Activist Award

Madison College student Mouna Algahaithi was honored this spring by the Wisconsin Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies with a Student Activist Award for her commitment to student engagement.

At Madison College, Algahaithi was involved in many leadership positions:

  • Managing Editor and News Editor for the Clarion Student Newspaper
  • Founder and President of the Muslim Student Union
  • Cultural Connect Peer Mentor Program Coordinator

She was also a member of several other student organizations:

  • Interclub Diversity Council
  • African Student Association
  • Clubs Executive Leadership Team
  • United Common Ground
  • Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society
  • Programs and Activities Council
  • Biology Club

Algahaithi was nominated for the award based on both her engagement and her commitment for peace, cultural understanding and social justice. Nominations included statements from multiple Madison college faculty and staff.



Published May 15, 2017.

Thompson earns top prize in Madison College Challenge

Six local entrepreneurs competed in the final phase of the 2017 Madison College Challenge business plan contest Friday, May 5. Deb Thompson, co-founder of Stimmi LLC, earned the top prize of $5,000 provided by Summit Credit Union and business services from local vendors.

Stimmi LLC, is a website designed to address the unique needs of a disabled person by collecting information in one place where it can be easily accessed by others to implement a care plan. Launched in April, the site is available on a monthly subscription basis. Thompson’s partner in the Madison-based venture is Laura Berkner.

Other award winners were:

  • Dharmendra Shah, second place, $2,500 sponsored by J. H. Findorff and Son
  • Melissa Gregory-Simon, third place, $1,500 sponsored by Cleary Building Corp.
  • Seth Jensen and Nika Taylor, fourth place, $1,000 and admission to the Wisconsin Entrepreneurship Conference, sponsored by Madison Gas and Electric
  • Harry Dettinger, fifth place, $1,000 sponsored by Mae Laatsch
  • Kaci Sullivan, sixth place, $500 sponsored by American Family Ventures

Business services for the prize winners were sponsored by: 100State, Growth Bomb Elite, Jenna Atkinson Consulting, Murphy Desmond Law Office, Madison Noteworthy, Walkner Condon Financial Advisors, Doyenne Group and SourceHouse. Jeff Noble and Jill Huizenga were operations sponsors for the event.

The Challenge, organized by the Center for Entrepreneurship, is open to all Madison College students enrolled in at least one credit or noncredit course during the current or previous school year. The college offers a Small Business Entrepreneurship program including courses in small business development and marketing, accounting fundamentals, customer service management and business law. 

Published May 10, 2017. Updated May 22, 2017.

Employees and students honored at TRiO Day Celebration

On Thursday, April 20, the TRiO SSS program held its 6th Annual TRiO Day Celebration Event. Forty-four TRiO students were recognized for achieving a fall 2016 semester grade point average of 3.5 or better, and the “Friend of TRiO” award was presented to Dave Medearis, who has been an instrumental and proactive partner in connecting qualified Madison College DRS students with the TRiO SSS program.

Listed below are the many Madison College staff and faculty who were awarded Certificates of Appreciation by TRiO students for the critical impact they’ve had on their lives and their ability to achieve educational success in specific courses during the 2016-17 academic year.

  • Gloria Agas
  • Simon Allard
  • Sarah Bannen
  • Maureen Barry
  • Eric Baxter
  • Charles Benton, Jr
  • Julie Barret
  • Tracey Bietz
  • Carlotta Calmese
  • Kitrina Carlson
  • Cherif Correa
  • Thuha Dang
  • Courtney Dicmas
  • Blanca De Leon
  • Gwen Ebert
  • Pascual Flores
  • Angelika Gulbis
  • Julia Haseleu
  • Bernardo Hoes
  • Anna Marie Hoffman
  • Jason Huberty
  • Kenny Mitchell
  • Joanne Kirkland
  • Al Lehnen
  • Erika Linzner
  • Stefanie Lohmann
  • Joseph Lowndes
  • Oana Martin
  • Julie Mau
  • Ryan Meyers
  • Viola Miller
  • Javier Neira
  • Sheri Parker
  • Paul Peeders
  • Karen Potnek
  • Matthew Sargent
  • Maurice Sheppard
  • Tamesia Sosa
  • Catherine Stover
  • Sarah Teniente
  • Teresita Torrence
  • Timothy Twohill
  • Eileen Valinskas
  • Amy Whitcomb  
  • Gerard Xavier

Published May 8, 2017.

2017 Distinguished Teachers announced

The Madison College Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society for Two-Year Colleges announced the selection of Michael Redding (full-time) and Rebecca Anderson (part-time) as the 2017 Distinguished Teachers of the Year. The faculty were recognized at the Celebration of Student Success Luncheon that occurred Thursday, April 20 in the Redsten Gym.

The student body received a ballot that included more than 25 full and part-time faculty who had been recognized at the PTK Golden Apple Banquet during the 2016-2017 academic year. Over 300 students participated in the voting. After reviewing the information submitted by the finalists, the feedback from the students and the votes, the PTK Executive Board made the final decision.

Redding is a full-time instructor in the Associate Degree Nursing program who has been teaching at Madison College for 14 years. He teaches a number of classes including Nursing Pharmacology, Nursing Clinical Care across the Lifespan and RN Refresher. Redding has worked for St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison and has master’s degrees in Exercise Physiology from the University of Louisville and in Nursing from UW-Madison. He received three pages of student comments speaking very highly of his work.

Anderson, a part-time instructor in the Accounting and Finance Program, has taught Business Organization, Management and Ethics for three semesters. She is currently director of marketing and product management at Cambridge Furniture Traders and Acme Art Co., in Cambridge.


Published May 5, 2017.