Guest Opinion: Stronger together


From: Minnesota State College Southeast President Emeritus James Johnson and Winona State University President Scott R. Olson

As longstanding partners in higher education, Minnesota State College Southeast and Winona State University work together to navigate the delicate balances of effective collaboration while promoting a common vision — to deliver a high quality educational experience to our students.

Through the years, we’ve partnered on a variety of shared services, working to maximizing our resources while maintaining our individual distinctiveness and preserving the core attributes that define us. We’ve partnered with businesses, schools and our local legislators to develop programs and facilities that are responsive to community needs. We know that we’re stronger together, and that through supporting each other, the entire community benefits.

We now welcome a new partner to this collaboration, Dr. Larry Lundblad, the new interim president of Minnesota State College Southeast. Together, we have nearly 25 combined years of working with Dr. Lundblad, and we have every confidence he will be a wonderful fit to lead MSC Southeast in Winona and in Red Wing as the search for a permanent college president unfolds.

Dr. Lundblad already has over 30 years of success in Minnesota, including leadership roles at local, state and regional levels. As president of Central Lakes College and vice president and chief academic officer at South Central College, he served at campuses with distinct similarities to MSC Southeast, making him keenly aware of the challenges and opportunities that exist for an institution with a strong technical college mission, a rural location, and dual campuses with different program offerings like we have with our MSC Southeast campuses in Winona and Red Wing.

Dr. Lundblad is a great problem-solver and an effective decision maker. His independent, community-centered style of leadership seeks to enhance the distinctiveness of the institutions he serves while also fostering growth and prosperity in the surrounding communities. We predict that Winonans — proudly distinctive and fiercely independent in our own right — will find an effective ally in President Lundblad.

As a community, let’s commit to continued partnership and success for Minnesota State College Southeast. We look forward to the opportunities and advancements Dr. Lundblad will no doubt explore for MSC Southeast and for our communities here in Winona and in Red Wing.

Please join us in welcoming Dr. Lundblad to our community!


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