August 24, 2021
August 24, 2021 – For many Northland Community & Technical College students, the first day of classes on Monday, August 23rd, felt like a return to a more normal semester. After spending more than a year of modified in-person and virtual learning, Northland’s classrooms are back to full capacity, and most classes are being offered in person again.
“It is great to see the campus alive with students,” shares Northland President Sandy Kiddoo. “What drives many of us at Northland are the connections we get to make with our students. Not having students on campus was strangely different, and we missed that interaction. As I talk with employees, everyone is excited to have students back on campus this fall, enjoying athletic events and student activities.”
A return to normal doesn’t mean a return to the status quo, however. Lessons have been learned from the pandemic and like many colleges across the nation, Northland recognizes that some of the methods of class delivery and offering services to students are a benefit and add to the flexibility and diversity of the college’s programming.
“We learned that students want flexibility and that there are some programs, courses, and services that work well in a virtual world,” Kiddoo states.”We certainly plan to take the good things we’ve developed and expand upon them into the future–offering an array of in-person, online, and hyflex/hybrid options.”
Along with restrictions to classes and services over the last year and a half, campus events were at a standstill. That is set to change. Northland will resume events beginning with a Welcome Wednesday on both the East Grand Forks and Thief River Falls campuses and the Aerospace site in Thief River Falls. Welcome Wednesday allows students to browse the services and resources available, get a free lunch, and pick up some college gear.
In addition, Northland’s President will officially celebrate the fall semester with the President’s Picnic held on each campus in September.
“Last year, the normal college experience was skewed by necessary efforts to suppress COVID-19,” affirms Jason Pangiarella Northland Success Coordinator & Advisor, “This year, while we aren’t post-pandemic quite yet, we are ready and poised to give our students more cultural, student life, and co-curricular options for the 2021/2022 academic year.”
The Northland Pioneers Volleyball and Clay Target teams are also set to kick off the fall sports calendar. The Volleyball team will hit the road for a tournament in Coon Rapids this weekend, and their first homestand is scheduled for September 1. At this point, fans will be allowed in the stands with no capacity caps to support Northland athletes. The Clay Target team will start logging their competition rounds soon, with practice set to begin the first week of September.