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Advisory committees serve college well

By Staff | Apr 15, 2011

On Thursday night, advisory committees met at Iowa Lakes Community College to give their advice for academic programs.

It was enlightening for both parties.

Professionals learned about the great technology that Iowa Lakes is teaching to both career prep and arts and science students – in many cases, far and away more advanced than what is seen in the workplace in many instances.

Iowa Lakes instructors and students in turn learned what’s going on in today’s workplace. They were also reminded of the realities – unfortunately, sometimes harsh – that graduates face.

But Iowa Lakes students are well prepared. In many cases they go up against graduates from four-year institutions, and win.

And here’s just one example.

Matt Heinrichs, a student in the Iowa Lakes journalism program, also worked as a sports writer at the Daily News starting fall 2009 and through the memorable championship game in which the Estherville Lincoln Central girls basketball team came home with the runner-up trophy.

Matt did all the right things. He combined his professional experience at the Daily News with his classroom training at Iowa Lakes. He assembled a great clip file. And probably best of all, he seasoned his talents as a great sports writer with his remarkable talents as an outstanding outdoor writer – that’s quite a valuable combination, by the way. If you’re great at both, as Matt is, you can work anywhere.

In May, Matt will assume the editor’s position in Lake Preston, S.D., the center of probably the greatest pheasant hunting in the U.S. as well as some great fishing. And you can bet there were a lot of four-year journalism grads with loads of experience competing for the position.

We like to think that Matt’s experience at both Iowa Lakes and the Daily News help him grow into the writer and photographer he was always meant to be. And now he’s ready to go off on his own and make his mark in the profession.

Congratulations, Matt, on a big step in your career and congratulations, Iowa Lakes, for putting out such an outstanding student.