Gov. Dayton talking to a student following the roundtable discussion.
Governor Mark Dayton continued his commitment to job creation and economic prosperity in Minnesota today, as his “Working for Minnesota Jobs” tour visited Brooklyn Park. The Governor hosted a roundtable discussion with information technology leaders in Minnesota’s retail sector. The Governor was joined by industry leaders and top CIOs from major Minnesota retailers, including Best Buy, Gander Mountain and Supervalu. The roundtable was held at North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park.
The discussion focused on new strategies to connect Minnesota workers with the skills and training they need to keep good-paying IT jobs here in the state. Minnesota retailers discussed the challenge of finding qualified IT workers located within the state. Often, businesses rely on advanced enterprise information technologies, such as Oracle Retail. Without local training programs for specific software, many retail companies must import workers or employ workers from outside of Minnesota.
In response to this shortfall, a group of private companies based in and around Minnesota, including Gander Mountain, Mills Fleet Farm, Maurice's, Orscheln Farm and Home, Scheels Sports, and others, have established the Oracle Retail User Group. This group, representing more than $2 billion a year in revenue, has launched an initiative to improve the skills of the Minnesota workforce in this key area of Minnesota’s economy. The Oracle Retail User Group is forming a public-private partnership with North Hennepin Technical College to establish an Oracle Retail Center of Excellence that will train Minnesota workers and keep good-paying jobs here in our state.
National cyber security experts and technology business leaders gathered Oct. 9 and 10 at the Minneapolis Convention Center for the second annual Cyber Security Summit.
Earlier this month, Governor Dayton joined governors from across the country when he declared October as Cyber Security Awareness Month to highlight the importance of empowering citizens, businesses, government and schools to improve their cyber security preparedness.
To help kick off the month, the State of Minnesota took part in the 2012 Cyber Security Summit, which brings together leaders from the government, business, and non-profit sectors to collaborate on improving digital security. The event featured speakers from all over the world sharing their insights on cyber topics – from the industry’s enormous growth potential (it’s expected to increase by nearly 80% over the next few years) to the growing pervasiveness of cyber threats (approximately $3 trillion of innovation lost by cyber-attacks each year).
Governor Dayton observes how a heart catheter is inserted into a chamber of the heart.
Today, Governor Dayton continued “Working for Minnesota Jobs,” hosting a roundtable discussion with medical technology innovators from across Minnesota. The event took place at Lake Region Medical – a medical device manufacturer headquartered in Chaska.
Governor Dayton observed a Menthis Cath Lab simulator demonstration, which utilizes real case studies to help Lake Region Medical develop and improve product technology and performance to meet patient and physician needs. Afterwards, sixteen business and research leaders in the emerging medical device field joined Governor Dayton for a medical technology roundtable discussion.
There are currently 585 medical device companies in Minnesota. There are roughly 29,351 Minnesota workers in this industry with 16,061 employed in the manufacturing of medical devices totaling $1.21 billion in annual wages.
The Department of Education's new website provides college prep tools for students, teachers and parents.
The Minnesota Department of Education launched its new website “Ready, Set, Go” today to help students, parents and teachers bridge the gap between high school and college.
“Today’s students will need some form of higher education to succeed in the workforce,” Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius said. “This website will be an important tool for ensuring our students take advantage of the great post-secondary options available to them while also preparing them for the next step after high school.”
The department hopes to use the site to encourage students take advantage of dual credit courses, college level courses offered to high school students. The site provides parents with up to date information on Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and other dual credit classes, while giving students tools for academic planning. It also provides information on preparing for the sometimes overwhelming process of applying to college, from choosing schools to applying for financial aid.
The site was made possible by a grant from the US Department of Education.
A screenshot of the Minnesota Department of Education IT dashboard
The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) is being recognized by an industry-leading tech magazine for obtaining valuable insights from their data using business intelligence (BI) and analytics tools. The MDE is among 10 organizations nationwide that are spotlighted in Computerworld's first-ever Best of BI Editor's Choice Awards.
The IT department at MDE is being lauded for its consolidation of data into user-friendly reports that end users -- administrators, teachers, parents and the public -- can easily access to find the data they need.
According to a story in Computerworld today “…whatever the goal, the 10 organizations spotlighted in Computerworld's first-ever Best of BI Editor's Choice Awards have learned how to get the valuable insights they need from their data using business intelligence and analytics tools.”
Getting ready for the seventh year at the Minnesota State Fair, the Eco Experience is better than ever! Every area of the exhibit has added new components to get Minnesotans to take action in their everyday lives.
Energy Solutions Home: This brand new component of the Eco Experience showcases real solutions for your home. Saving energy will not only save you money but makes a difference in the air we breathe and the water quality in our communities. Put together by the Minnesota Department of Commerce and partners from around the state.
The Energy Solutions Home includes these features:
The Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) is built upon the idea of helping Minnesotans, and thanks to their online public dashboard tool, it’s become even easier for Minnesotans to help themselves to information on the progress of DHS.
The DHS Dashboard allows taxpayers to know what they’re getting from the programs they pay for, and was inspired by Governor Mark Dayton’s “Better Government for a Better Minnesota” reform effort. The dashboard debuted one year ago, and has now been updated to include the most recent data available for the majority of its 15 measures of progress, as well as introducing additional measurements. As DHS advances in its commitment to accountability, transparency, and continual performance improvement, more measures will continue to be added.
Minnesota leads the country in e-prescribing, making it one of the most safe and efficient places to get your medication. E-prescribing allows a prescriber to electronically send error-free prescriptions directly to a pharmacy from the point-of-care, which decreases the risks associated with the traditional method of prescribing; research has shown that e-prescribing reduces medication error rates by almost sevenfold in community-based office practices, including elimination of errors due to illegible handwriting.
Minnesota's success is due to its collaborative approach, which is led by the Minnesota e-Health Initiative, a public-private collaborative established in 2004 that is guided by a 25-member advisory committee appointed by the commissioner of health to provide advice and feedback on policy making related to health information technology (HIT) in Minnesota.
The rankings are put out by Surescripts, the nation’s largest health information network. For 2011 and are determined by an analysis of data that measures the electronic prescribing use by physicians, pharmacies and payers in each state. Minnesota came in first place for e-prescribing in Surescripts’ 7th annual Safe-Rx Awards. See Surescripts profile of Minnesota here.
An exhibit on E-Waste presented by the MPCA at the 2011 Minnesota State Fair as part of their Eco Experience facility.
In a world increasingly dependent on smartphones and laptops, the issue of responsibly disposing of these electronics is becoming more and more pressing. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) reports that in the last year, Minnesota took in nearly 33 million pounds of electronic waste for recycling, making Minnesota a national leader in collections of e-waste for recycling.
What is electronic waste? E-waste, as it’s called, is what’s created when electronic materials are disposed. This can include cellphones, computers, printers, televisions, digital cameras, etc., and as technology continues to advance and we continue to upgrade our devices, the amount of e-waste we produce continues to rise as well.
Unlike throwing away a piece of paper, however, disposing of electronics can have a huge impact on the environment and on our health; e-waste contains high levels of lead, cadmium, and other chemicals that can pollute the ground and water supply if they aren’t properly disposed of. Electronic waste should always be taken to certified recycling facilities that are trained to manage these hazardous chemicals.