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Minnesota State College Southeast
A Technical & Community College
MSC Southeast

Contact: Katryn Conlin, Communications Director

For Immediate Release

Minnesota State College Southeast named a semifinalist for the 2018 Secretary Of Defense Freedom Award 

149 semifinalists selected from more than 2,350 nominations

Winona, MN (March 13, 2018) --  From more than 2,350 nominations received nationwide, Minnesota State College Southeast has been selected as a semifinalist for the 2018 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award. 

Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) state committees selected 149 nominees for the 2018 Freedom Award. A thorough vetting process, from the more than 2,350 nominations submitted by Guardsmen and Reservists, determined the semifinalists. 

The semifinalists are from both large and small employers, as well as government organizations, representing numerous industries across the United States. ESGR received nominations for employers in all 50 states, Guam-CNMI, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia.

Minnesota State College Southeast is one of four Minnesota semifinalists, along with Ecolab, the Minnesota Department of Transportation, and PaR Systems, LLC. 

"Our college is deeply honored to be nominated for this national award," says Interim President Larry Lundblad. "Minnesota State College Southeast takes great pride in our Guard and Reserve employees, who go above and beyond in their service to our country and our community. We cannot thank them enough." 

An ESGR national review board will select and announce the 30 finalists for the Freedom Award by March 30. 

History of the Freedom Award

  • The Freedom Award began in 1996 by Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve to draw attention to support from the employer community.
  • To date, only 250 employers have received the award. 
  • More than 19,000 nominations have been received since 2011.



About the Freedom Award

The Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award is the highest recognition given by the U.S. Government to employers for their support of their employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve. Nominations must come from a Guard or Reserve member who is employed by the organization they are nominating, or from a family member. The award was created to publicly recognize employers who provide exceptional support to their Guard and Reserve employees. It is the highest in a series of employer recognition awards given by the Department of Defense.

Almost one-half of the U.S. military is comprised of the Guard and Reserve. The Department of Defense shares these citizen warriors with their civilian employers, many of whom provide significant support to their employees who serve in the Guard and Reserve. This award recognizes employers who provide the most outstanding support for their Guard and Reserve employees and is presented annually by the Secretary of Defense. More information at:

About Minnesota State College Southeast

Minnesota State College Southeast is a two-year technical and community college that prepares students for a lifetime of learning by providing education for employment, skill enhancement, retraining, and transfer, to meet the needs of students and the community. The Winona campus opened in 1949, merging with the Red Wing campus in 1992 and updating its name to Minnesota State College Southeast in 2016 with the change of mission to offer both technical training and the associate of arts degree. Minnesota State College Southeast is a member of Minnesota State. For more information, visit

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RED WING CAMPUS | 308 Pioneer Road | Red Wing, MN 55066
WINONA CAMPUS | 1250 Homer Road | Winona, MN 55987
COLLEGE PHONE | 507-453-2700 | 877-853-8324

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 based on membership or activity in a local commission as defined by law is prohibited.


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