DCTC is dedicated to meeting the needs of student-veterans and active-duty service members. Some veterans face personal, relationship, education and employment challenges. Veteran’s families also may need support while their loved ones serve overseas and when they return home. DCTC, working with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, provides additional training on supporting veterans to counselors, student affairs staff, faculty, and administrators.
Apply for financial aid by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at www.fafsa.gov.
Apply for VA Education Benefits
Those eligible for educational benefits from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs should contact Katherine Bachman or the School Certifying Official with questions regarding the following benefits:
Chapter 30 - Active Duty
Chapter 33 - Post-9/11 GI Bill
Chapter 35 - Dependent and Survivors
Chapter 1606 - Guard/Reserve
* Note: Eligible persons are reminded that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will not pay benefits for repeated or audited courses. In addition, benefits for short courses—those that do not meet for the entire term—will be paid for only the days that the class meets.
Verify Enrollment with college certifying official.
Monthly Enrollment Verification
All Chapter 1606 and Chapter 30 beneficiaries must verify their enrollment on a monthly basis, on or after the last day of the month. If you have a change in enrollment that impacts your status (for example dropping from full time to 3/4 time), you must also notify the School Certifying Official. Click here to complete your monthly enrollment verification, or call 1-877-823-2378.
In order to prevent delays in receiving your benefits, it will be necessary for you to comply with the following:
Follow courses that are within your major. If you change your major inform the VA Certifying official.
Report your registration, changes, or withdrawals to School Certifying Official.
Monthly verify your attendance to the VA on the WAVE, (presently CH 33 is exempt from monthly verification) WAVE call in number 1-877-823-2378.
The Net Price Calculator is a tool for students and parents to use to get an estimate of what it may cost to attend Dakota County Technical College. These costs include not only tuition and fees, but books, transportation and other costs of living while attending college.
Many nontraditional students can demonstrate college-level knowledge and competencies. Such learning—gained from experiences outside postsecondary education—often merits academic credit. Credit for Prior Learning (CPL) provides a range of options from recognition of military and workforce training to national examinations and portfolio development. With more options comes the increased likelihood for greater numbers of learners to complete credentials." - American Council on Education
What are general options for prior learning assessment (PLA) or credit for prior learning (CPL)?
Military training and service
Interview with faculty or subject matter expert (SME) to discuss learning and experience
Examinations (national exams such as AP, CLEP, DSST, and departmental examinations)
Established in spring 2007 in cooperation with the Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, The Military and Veteran Service Center provides support to military members, veterans, and their families as they transition to college and beyond. The Center is committed to offering information and assistance as well as a welcoming space for students to gather for peer support.
The Center is located in Room 2-302 and is staffed by Katherine Bachman and VA student workers who are committed to helping veterans reach their higher education goals.
Veterans, current military, and dependent resources
Listed below are resources on campus that can be beneficial to veterans.
Military and Veterans Service Center *
A one-stop resource for information and referrals regarding veteran’s benefits and rights.
Priority Registration for Veterans
Veterans can register for classes during pre-advising week earlier than the general student population.
Reserved Parking Spaces
DCTC has two reserved parking spaces in each parking lot for veterans and current military.
Transcript Fee Waived for Veterans/Current Military
When requesting a transcript in person, bring your military ID, DD214, or VAMC ID card to have the transcript request fee waived (the fee will be charged for online requests through the National Clearing House).
Listed below are resources off campus in Dakota County that can be beneficial to veterans.
Veterans Crisis Line
The Veterans Crisis Line connects Veterans in crisis and their families and friends with qualified, caring responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text. Veterans and their loved ones can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, chat online, or send a text message to 838255 to receive confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
County Veterans Service Officers
Offers wide ranging assistance and advocacy for veterans and their families, including disability claims, medical benefits, discharge upgrades, and more.
The mission of the Dakota County Technical College Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Committee is to support student-veterans, service members and their families; honor their service; and advocate for military-friendly policies and practices.
Support the retention and academic success, wellbeing, and career success of student-veterans, service members, and their families.
Increase campus awareness of veterans’ challenges, military culture, and best practices to support the military community.
Advocate for military-friendly policies and practices.
Honor and recognize the service and sacrifices of veterans, service members, and their families.
Track effectiveness and success of military-related initiatives and continuously improve services to student-veterans, service members, and their families.
Collaborate with Beyond the Yellow Ribbon networks, government agencies, community partners, and non-profit organizations.
Committee Members 2019-2020
Kathy Bachman, MDVA Regional Coordinator
Heath Baumgard Director of Recruitment and Admissions
Brandon Bretlinger, General Maintenance Worker
Michael Crider, Financial Aid Assistant
Tiffany Dressen, Communications Specialist
Scott Gunderson, Faculty
Julia Glenn, Human Resources Business Partner
Anne Johnson, Vice President of Student Affairs
Mike Leonard Student
Kerry Lurken, Admissions Representative
Laura Quezada, Human Recourse Assistant
Scott Roelke, Director of Financial Aid & Scholarships
Chrissy Wills, Resources Navigator
Anna Voight, Associate Director of Student Life (committee chair)
The following military-friendly policies reflect the spirit of the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Company Status awarded to Minnesota State and Dakota County Technical College.
Application Fee Waiver
Colleges and universities can waive application fees for active duty military service members deployed overseas. Many institutions will also waive application fees for veterans; check with your campus of interest for more information.
Special provisions are available to military personnel called to active duty while attending college. Options include: (1) Full refund of tuition; (2) grade of incomplete with opportunity to complete coursework through independent study or by retaking the course at no charge; or (3) grade of C or better if warranted by coursework completed prior to departure.
Consistent with Minnesota State Statute 197.775, students who are eligible and have applied for but not yet received veterans benefits are exempt from being charged a late fee. The law says: "A state college or university may not assess late fees or other late charges for veterans who are eligible to receive federal or state educational assistance and who have applied for that assistance but not yet received it, nor may they prevent these students from registering for a subsequent term because of outstanding tuition charges that arise from delayed federal or state payments."
Minnesota State Colleges and Universities will consider prior learning attained in non-credit or experiential settings such as the military. Credit will be awarded for prior learning that is assessed as college-level learning as it applies to your chosen program and degree.
Minnesota State Colleges and Universities consider academic credit earned at accredited public, private, and military colleges and will award transfer credit when courses from the accredited provider apply to your chosen program and degree.
About DCTC Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Challenge Coins
Challenge coins are awarded to employees who are veterans, and veterans, service members, and their dependents utilizing military benefits upon the completion of a degree or diploma at Dakota County Technical College.
Additionally, through a rigorous nomination process, challenge coins may be awarded to employees who have demonstrated outstanding support of students in the military community. Download the form below to nominate an employee!
Regional Coordinator – MN Department of Veteran Affairs
Awarded November 2018
Kathy served in the U.S. Navy, her husband served in the U.S. Army Reserve and as a U.S. Navy Seabee, she has a son who is currently serving in the U.S. Navy and a daughter currently serving in the U.S. Air Force Reserve.
Kathy has worked in Veterans Affairs for 11 years, dedicating her career to supporting our military community. Kathy supports the success and well-being of veterans through her role on campus managing the Military and Veterans Service Center, ensuring the space is warm, welcoming, and meets the needs of our student-veterans. Kathy was instrumental in securing funding for the current Military and Veterans Service Center. When Kathy learns of needs that veterans have, she utilizes her support network to meet the need. One example of this is when a student-veteran needed living room furniture and Kathy was able to find someone who had furniture that needed a new home through her network. Meeting this need helped the veteran’s wellbeing and financial stability.
Financial Aid Representative
Awarded November 2018
Michael served in the U.S. Marine Corps and has a son currently serving in the U.S. Air Force.
Michael works tirelessly to support the retention and academic success of all Dakota County Technical College students, and places special emphasis on students with a history of military service. Michael goes out of his way to engage with students who have served, by making his presence known, being approachable and making these students feel welcome in the Enrollment Services office. Michael has also helped employees who are veterans transition from being a student to a college employee.
Business Management Faculty
Awarded November 2018
Scott has been a strong advocate of Credit for Prior Learning and ensuring veterans are awarded credit for their military experience. Scott spearheaded the creation of the Technical Management degree with veterans in mind so they could gain up to 40 credits toward the degree for their military experience. Scott’s students who are veterans say that he is understanding their needs and what they are going through. He always has their best interests in mind, and goes above and beyond to support their success inside and outside of the classroom. Read Scott’s full bio.
Awarded November 2019
Diane has worked tirelessly behind the scenes to support our student-veterans. She coordinates awarding challenge coins to veteran-graduates and volunteered at the Veterans Club BBQ fundraiser. Additionally, she has volunteered multiple years at Support Our Troops Haunted House, and has coordinated the Student Affairs Adopt a Veteran for the Holidays multiple times. Several of Diane’s family members have served in the military, and she brings this first-hand experience and knowledge to our campus to support our student-veterans.
Associate Vice President of Student Affairs
Awarded November 2018
Anne’s brother served in the U.S. Marine Corps for 20 years serving two tours of duty in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.
Anne is the administrative champion on campus for veterans. The increase in focus on veteran’s services and initiatives in recent years on campus is due to Anne’s dedication to serve our student-veteran population. Anne wrote the Title III Grant which provides funding for staff positions focused on increasing usage of credit for prior learning and supports the success of adult learners and veterans. Anne was also the principle administrative ally who advocated for a larger veteran’s center space to ensure veterans’ needs were met. The number of visits to center have tripled since moving to the new location.
Awarded November 2018
Brett has connected with countless veterans through his classes and has remained in close contact with some long after graduation.
Brett ensures that student-veterans in his classes know where to get support. During his classes, he lets his students know that there is a veteran’s center on campus, that his door is always open, and if he doesn’t know the answer to a question a veteran has, he will find out it. As Lions Club Advisor, Brett has supported and coordinated campus-wide events on PTSD and suicide awareness. Brett’s students see him as an advocate for veterans. When one of his students told him she was having issues with the VA, Brett connected her to Veterans Affairs staff on campus who were able to help get her the answers she needed. Read Brett’s full bio.
Awarded November 2019
Kerry served as DCTC's School Certifying Official for 12 years, and was the go-to staff member for military students for any issues regarding classes, VA benefits, and personal issues. Kerry has coordinated multiple trainings and presentations on military benefits for students and employees. Kerry is a long-time member of the beyond the Yellow Ribbon Committee and previously served as Veterans Club Advisor. He has also volunteered at many campus and fundraising events for veterans.
Director of Student Life
Awarded November 2018
Nicole’s father served in the U.S. Navy.
In 2009, Nicole began collaborating with the campus community as well as the City of Rosemount to come up with a plan to serve veterans, current military and their family members. The result of her efforts paid off and in 2010 DCTC became the first campus in the metro area to earn the proclamation of a Beyond The Yellow Ribbon Campus. Nicole continued supporting the Beyond The Yellow Ribbon initiative by attending Minnesota State Conferences where she was able to share best practices on how to become a Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Campus. Nicole continues to support veterans, current military and their family members by volunteering in her spare time for Flags for Fort Snelling, assisting Rosemount Yellow Ribbon, and packing back packs for children of service members. Read Nicole’s full bio.
Associate Director of Student Life
Awarded November 2018
Anna's brother served in the MN Army National Guard serving a tour of duty in Iraq, and her grandfathers served in the Army and Air Force serving in WWII and the Korean War, respectively.
Anna has served as Chair of the Beyond The Yellow Ribbon Committee since 2016 and has done an exceptional job moving initiatives forward in support of our student veterans and their families, including implementing the DCTC Challenge Coin for student-veteran graduates, faculty, and staff; adding campus signage about the BTYR designation and reserved parking spaced for veterans; and planning a veterans orientation welcome event for incoming veterans. Anna has implemented a continuous improvement process for Beyond the Yellow Ribbon committee initiatives and goals to focus on quality, and worked with the campus’s Institutional Research department to create a military-specific program evaluation to help improve programming. With her leadership DCTC has risen to ##6 in the nation and ##1 in Minnesota as the best technical college for veterans (as of 2018), according to Military Times Magazine. Read Anna’s full bio.
Customized Training Admin Support
Awarded November 2019
Gina is passionate about supporting our student-veteran population. She has served on the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Committee for three years and she will do whatever is needed to support our veterans. She has volunteered at Veterans Club fundraisers, packing backpacks for military kids, and has supported Toys for Military Kids. Gina goes above and beyond to support our veterans on campus and will do whatever it takes to help them succeed. Gina’s Grandfather, Father in Law and three Uncles, have served in the Army and is proud of her families service and sacrifice.
Starting college as a veteran can at times be complex and often requires some time for adjustment. Connecting with other veterans on campus can help overcome the stress and challenges of this transition. We offer student veterans opportunities to meet other veterans on campus and join together for camaraderie and peer support through the Veterans Club.