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News and Events

Keeping you in touch with MSC Southeast

Band Instrument Repair partners with Vega to donate musical instruments

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Neglected musical instruments find new life, new purpose through MSC Southeast's Band Instrument Repair Program

Vega and Band Instrument Repair PartnershipDo you have a clarinet collecting dust in your closet? A tarnished trumpet in your basement? A squeaky saxophone stored in your attic?

A new partnership between the Band Instrument Repair (BIR) program at MSC Southeast and Vega Productions, a non-profit based in the Twin Cities, can transform those abandoned instruments into something wonderful for an aspiring young musician. 

Vega collects musical instruments from people who don't need them anymore and provides them to school programs whose families can't afford to buy or rent instruments. But many of the donated instruments need to be repaired before they can find new homes.

"We have a climate controlled storage unit full of instruments that are in need of attention before they can go out to schools for students to use. The supply exceeds our ability to get them repaired," said Vega Executive Director Caitlin Marlotte. 

"The Band Instrument Repair program at Red Wing has such a good reputation -- whenever I would talk about needing instrument repair, people would suggest that I reach out and partner with the college," she continued.

"As part of their training, our students completely overhaul several instruments. We have a constant need for instruments that need repair," explained BIR instructor John Maddox. "Meanwhile, Vega has a constant supply of instruments that need work!"

Packing instruments into carIn 2018-2019, BIR students repaired instruments provided by Vega. In August, Caitlin Marlotte came to campus to receive 95 clarinets, cornets, trumpets and saxophones, now in perfect working condition. They are ready to be distributed to schools through VEGA's flagship program, Instruments in the Cloud (www.instrumentsinthecloud.org).

"Vega is really doing a really great thing in that they're finding the places where these instruments will be best utilized, with schools that have the greatest need," said John Maddox. 

He believes this work is not only valuable to the schools and aspiring musicians who will receive the instruments --- it's valuable to the college student as well. 

"We talk about this partnership with our students, how what they're repairing will have a real, tangible effect on a young student who might be making music for the first time," he said. 

"One of the beauties of repair in general, and how we as repairers fit into the cycle of music making, is that we get to be a part of that journey with a musician to help them express themselves." 

Caitlin Marlotte is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the Band Instrument Program. "Having a partnership with Minnesota State College Southeast really accelerates the impact we can make on music education," she said. 

For more information about Vega's instrument donation program, visit www.instrumentsinthecloud.org

Photo above: Vega Board Member Max Kittel, Executive Director Caitlin Marlotte, and BIR instructors John Maddox and Greg Beckwith posed with a cartload of musical instruments ready for Vega's school donation program.

Photo below: Max and Caitlin packed up two cars with all of the instruments!

Great River Guitar Show coming to Red Wing Campus Sept. 7-8

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Great River Guitar Show coming to Red Wing Campus Sept. 7-8

Great River Guitar Show LogoRed Wing may be world famous for Red Wing Shoes and Red Wing Pottery -- but the town is also known around the world for Minnesota State College Southeast's Guitar Repair and Building Program. That's why the campus will be such a great venue for the Great River Guitar Show this September!

Great River Guitar Show
Saturday, September 7 from 10 am to 5 pm
Sunday, September 8 from 11 am to 4 pm
Minnesota State College Southeast, Red Wing Campus
308 Pioneer Road, Red Wing, MN
Admission: $15 at the door

Tim Reede is the lead organizer of the event, which will draw luthiers (stringed instrument makers) from across the USA and Canada to display their work. Tim is not only a guitar builder himself, he's a graduate of MSC Southeast's program and now teaches at the college.

"Red Wing has long been the destination for weekend getaways due to the charm of the historic downtown and Mississippi River," he said. "When the Great River Guitar Show comes to town, there will be another attraction for the public to enjoy -- two days of exhibits and concerts showcasing the very best stringed instruments. There will be hand crafted acoustic and electric guitars, basses, amplifiers, banjos, mandolins, and ukuleles, from over 30 makers!"

Tim Reede Venitian archtop guitar

What's happening at the Great River Guitar Show:

  • See extraordinary hand made guitars and hear them played in showcase concerts by some of the Upper Midwest's top talent, including Jerry Kosak, Mark Kreitzer, and Mike Cramer
  • Movie screenings: "Acoustic Uprising" by Drew Roller and "Don't Get Trouble in Your Mind" by John Whitehead
  • Open acoustic music jam sessions and workshops for players
  • An exhibit of unique and historic stringed instruments
  • Door prizes provided by D'Addario
  • And much, much more!

In addition, of course, you can tour the college's Guitar Repair and Building program labs and see where our students begin their journey to becoming talented luthiers themselves.

Concerts

There will a special concert at the Sheldon Theatre on Saturday evening, September 7: Masters of Guitar in Concert, featuring three world-class instrumentalists -- Pat Donohue, Tim Sparks, and Dean Magraw. Tickets for this concert are sold separately at www.sheldontheatre.org. On Sunday afternoon, roots/soul singer Annie Mack and her band will close out the show with a free concert from 5-7 pm at The Harbor Bar, just across the river from Red Wing.

Photo above: This hand-built archtop guitar by Tim Reede is just one example of the kind of instruments that will be on display at the Great River Guitar Show in September.

For more information about the Great River Guitar Show, visit greatriverguitarshow.com.

Grand Opening - Advanced Manufacturing CNC Lab in Winona

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Grand Opening - Advanced Manufacturing CNC Lab at MSC Southeast in Winona

Ribbon CuttingOn Monday, August 12, the college cut the ribbon to officially open the Advanced Manufacturing CNC Lab in Winona -- sparkling clean facilities showcasing newly-installed, state-of-the art equipment. The lab is ready to welcome students as Fall semester 2019 begins.

Winona area manufacturers, businesses, organizations and individuals have come together to support the college through the Advanced Manufacturing Infrastructure Initiative. Business leader Jerry Papenfuss signed a symbolic check for $582,000, representing the funding that has been raised so far to equip and refurbish technical lab spaces.

"Students need to train on the same kind of equipment they will be using in real world manufacturing positions," said Travis Thul, Dean of Trade and Technology. "We have brand new automated CNC lathes, CNC mills, manual processes including advanced digital readouts, and 3D printing capabilities -- not to mention a completely overhauled infrastructure within the facility itself."

In the next phase of the Advanced Manufacturing Infrastructure Initiative, the college will expand its robotics capabilities.

Donation Check"Today's industry requires a more highly skilled workforce that is able to troubleshoot, design, develop, and operate this type of equipment," Travis continued. 

"We will train our students on the mechanics, the electronics, the programming and the nuances required to be able to operate everything from an automated CNC machine tool to multi-axis automated conveyor systems. We want to be ahead of the curve on providing an environment where students can learn on the most current equipment possible."




© 2019 Minnesota State College Southeast

RED WING CAMPUS | 308 Pioneer Road | Red Wing, MN 55066 | 651-385-6300
WINONA CAMPUS | 1250 Homer Road | Winona, MN 55987 | 507-453-2700

Minnesota State College Southeast is an affirmative action/equal opportunity educator and employer. ADA accessible. MSC Southeast is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination in employment and education opportunity. No person shall be discriminated against in the terms and conditions of employment, personnel practices, or access to and participation in, programs, services, and activities with regard to race, sex, color, creed, religion, age, national origin, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, or sexual orientation. In addition, discrimination in employment base on membership or activity in a local commission as defined by law is prohibited.

 

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