Dakota County Technical College

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Dakota County Technical College
Motto"Real Education. Real Results."
TypePublic, two-year technical college
Academic affiliation
PresidentMichael Berndt
Academic staff
80 full-time instructors; 100 adjunct
Administrative staff
Students3,000 full-time and part-time credit students per semester; 6,000 customized training students per year
Location, ,
United States

44°44′15″N 93°04′40″W / 44.7375°N 93.0778°W / 44.7375; -93.0778Coordinates: 44°44′15″N 93°04′40″W / 44.7375°N 93.0778°W / 44.7375; -93.0778
CampusRosemount campus: Rural;
108 acres (44 ha) owned;
105 acres (42 ha) leased
Colors   Blue & black
NicknameBlue Knights DCTC blue knights logo.png
Sporting affiliations

Dakota County Technical College (DCTC) is a public, two-year technical college in Rosemount, Minnesota, United States. It is located in Dakota County inside the Minneapolis/St. Paul metropolitan area. DCTC belongs to the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System and is one of five stand-alone technical colleges in the state.

History and governance[edit]

Approved by the 1969 Minnesota State Legislature, Dakota County Technical College started in 1970 with 50 students in three programs. The college's permanent site was a research farm formerly owned and operated by the University of Minnesota. The 185,000-square-foot (17,200 m2) main building opened in 1973, offering 30 academic programs to nearly 700 students.

At the state level, the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System Board of Trustees serves as the college's governing authority. In 2011, the school received a 10-year re-accreditation without conditions from the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Institutions of Higher Education (NCA-CIHE).[1]

The college has had four presidents in its history. David L. Schroeder served from 1970 to 1999. Ronald E. Thomas, Ph.D., was DCTC's president from 1999 to 2013. Tim Wynes, J.D., who also served as president at Inver Hills Community College, led from 2013 to 2018. Starting July 2, 2018, Michael Berndt will serve as interim president of the two colleges. The Minnesota State Board of Regents will announce a permanent replacement in Spring 2019.

Campus setting[edit]

The DCTC main campus is located on the outskirts of Rosemount, Minnesota, a city of 14,660 about 14 miles (23 km) south of St. Paul, the capital of Minnesota. The Rosemount campus houses the majority of the college's instructional programs, which are separated into seven academic departments (see below). The college is going forward with a 22-acre (8.9 ha) prairie grass and wildflower restoration project on the Rosemount campus that is designed and maintained by faculty and students in the Landscape Horticulture program.

DCTC also delivers 10 programs of study in the Business and Management department at the Partners in Higher Education building in Apple Valley Minn., as well as Programming & Development, Microsoft Office, Microsoft Networking, Cisco Networking, Database, IT Foundations, and Web/Graphic Design courses at the IT Training Center in Eagan, Minnesota


The college has 57 instructional programs under six academic departments:

  • Business and Information Systems
  • Business and Management
  • Design
  • Health and Human Services
  • Technical Careers
  • Transportation Careers

The college's general Education department offers General Education, Minnesota Transfer Curriculum and Developmental Education courses. Awards offered by DCTC include certificates, diplomas, A.S. degrees and A.A.S. degrees.

Notable programs[edit]

Nanoscience Technology[edit]

  • This program prepares students for careers in the nanobiotech, nanomaterials and nanoelectronics industries. Offered through a partnership with the University of Minnesota, the program gives graduates the skills and knowledge to land jobs in companies and corporations applying nanotechnology to product development, testing, research and development, and manufacturing design.
  • The National Science Foundation awarded Dakota County Technical College a $3 million grant to develop the Midwest Regional Center for Nanotechnology Education, or Nano-Link. Situated on DCTC's Rosemount campus, Nano-Link will work to create a skilled workforce of nanotechnologists to enhance economic growth in nanoscale science and technology. The center builds on the success of DCTC's pioneering Nanoscience Technology program, which was established in partnership with the University of Minnesota to prepare graduates for employment in the abundant array of industries where nanoscience applications are rapidly emerging.
  • DCTC Nanoscience Technology students, working to promote nano and their program, founded a Web site called Nanostudents.com.

Railroad Conductor Technology[edit]

Business Entrepreneur[edit]

  • Instructor Bob Voss received the National Association of Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) Faculty Member of the Year award in 2008. Associate Dean Christine Pigsley was awarded a $3,600 grant from the Coleman Foundation and Business Entrepreneur student Mary Glock won The New York Times/NACCE Student Essay Contest that same year.[2] The program is housed at the Institute for Business, Innovation & Entrepreneurship, which serves as a resource for business education, small-business support, continuing education and customized training for the southern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

Interior Design[edit]

Landscape Horticulture[edit]

Customized training[edit]

Partnering with more than 100 area businesses and industries, DCTC offers customized continuing education in a number of areas. In a typical year, more than 6,000 students are enrolled in the college's Customized Training programs. Some noteworthy training projects include:

Business and Management
IT/Computer Technology
  • Foldcraft: $300,000 grant for operational excellence training in manufacturing along with other instruction[7]
  • Urologix: $189,000 grant for two-pronged competency training that included pilot and train-the-trainer programs[7]
Public Safety
  • 151 out of 153 (98.6 percent) students passed Truck Driver Training program and earned Class A Commercial Driver's License (CDL)[7]
  • Multimillion-dollar facility includes observation deck, three TDT exercise yards and an enclosed, three-mile (5 km) decision driving track[7]


In 2008, DCTC received a $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation to develop the Midwest Regional Center for Nanotechnology Education (Nano-Link) on the DCTC campus.[8] Deb Newberry, the director of the college's Nanoscience Technology program, was appointed to head Nano-Link, which provides resources and support to colleges delivering nanotechnology education and research throughout a five-state region. Six two-year colleges in North Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Michigan partnered to develop this center.


Sports programs at DCTC include Women's and Men's soccer:

  • Head coach: Mark Obarski
  • Both soccer teams compete as independents at the NJCAA Div. I level in Region 13.
  • All home games are played on the DCTC main campus in Rosemount, at the Ames Soccer Complex, which was constructed through a partnership between the college and the city of Rosemount with an in-kind donation from Ames Construction.

Women's Fastpitch Softball:

  • Head coach: Tom Cross
  • Fastpitch softball competes as an independent at the NJCAA Div. III level in Region 13.

Men's Baseball:

  • Head coach: Matt Erzar
  • Baseball competes as an independent at the NJCAA Div. II level in Region 13.

Men's Basketball:

  • Head coach: Kelly Boe
  • Inaugural season: Fall 2011
  • Men's basketball will compete as an independent at the NJCAA Div. II level in Region 13.

Women's Volleyball:

  • Head coach: Jen Bowman
  • Inaugural season: Fall 2011
  • Women's volleyball will compete as an independent at the NJCAA Div. II level in Region 13.

Campus life[edit]

DCTC has a range of student organizations and clubs under the college's Student Life umbrella. Headed by a six-member executive board, the Student Senate manages a budget that funds social activities, scholarships and charitable projects. The Multicultural Student Leadership Organization, DCTC Campus Lions Club, Phi Theta Kappa and SkillsUSA are all active on campus.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ HLC evaluator-consultant team gives highest recommendation possible
  2. ^ "Business Entrepreneur Program Earns Three National Awards". Archived from the original on November 22, 2008. Retrieved November 18, 2008.
  3. ^ "Experience Cubed". Archived from the original on September 27, 2010. Retrieved November 18, 2008.
  4. ^ "Landscape Horticulture Accreditation". Archived from the original on May 13, 2008. Retrieved November 18, 2008.
  5. ^ "Landscape Horticulture Professional Affiliations". Archived from the original on May 13, 2008. Retrieved November 18, 2008.
  6. ^ "Ultramodern Greenhouse Goes Green on Campus". Archived from the original on July 1, 2010. Retrieved November 18, 2008.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j 2007-2008 Customized Training Summary
  8. ^ Dakota County Technical College Earns $3M Grant for Nano-Link[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]