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Economic Development Education Thrives through Summer of Professional Development

Monday, October 14, 2019   (0 Comments)
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The Minnesota Economic Development Foundation works in partnership with EDAM to stimulate interest and understanding of careers in economic development and provides financial support for internships, scholarships and internationally certified professional development courses.  The Foundation sponsored two events this summer.

Upper Midwest Basic Economic Development Course

The Upper Midwest Basic Economic Development Course, certified by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), was held July 15-19 at Great River Energy’s headquarters in Maple Grove.  It was the first time in three years this core economic development course was offered in Minnesota.  Forty-two participants completed the course. They represented all parts of Minnesota and various types and sizes of public, non-profit and private development organizations. Through targeted recruitment and scholarships, the foundation was able to achieve a refreshing level of diversity. Twenty-nine of the participants received scholarships to make the program more affordable.

The week’s fifteen sessions met the curriculum requirements set forth by the International Economic Development Council. The program received high marks, as participants rated the course 4.67 on a 5.0 scale. The following comments are representative of what many participants  valued about the training:

  •  “I am new to the industry so this class provided me with a ton of useful information.”
  •  “As a young professional, new to this field, I appreciated the opportunity to broaden my horizons and to learn a lot more about many of the basic functions of an economic developer.”
  •  “I valued the experience all of the speakers/presenters have. It was very beneficial to hear how they’ve implemented ideas/processes.”

This week-long course is the first step toward attainment of Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) status, the highest professional standard awarded by the International Economic Development Council.   Minnesota needs more professionals to gain the knowledge embodied in this certification, in order to do the daily work of building a stronger economy.

The MNEDF plans to host the week-long course again next spring, April 27 – May 1, 2019 at Great River Energy in Maple Grove.  Watch EDAM communications for updates and registration materials.   The 2019 course sold out, so plan to register early to attend this important educational opportunity.

Some of the photos from the BEDC week:




Economic Development Academy

 Sixteen early stage economic development professionals, including five of the interns supported this year by the Minnesota Economic Development Foundation, participated in the 2019 Economic Development Academy held on August 5 at Great River Energy.  

During the day-long session participants heard from 10 early to mid-career economic development professionals.  The discussion illustrated a variety of career paths available within the economic development profession. Panelists described how they got their jobs, the technical and non-technical skills required, what it takes to be successful, and the resources and partners they rely on in the “team sport” of economic development.

Thanks to all the EDAM members who shared their stories:  Leslie Dingmann, Marie Pflipsen, Jacquel Hajder, Adam Kienberger, Lisa Xiong, Samantha DiMaggio, Rick Howden, Matt Brown, Ling Becker, and Maurice Harris.


MNEDF interns following the August 5 E.D. Academy,  L/R: Amy Bakken, City of Barnesville; Emily Anderson, City of Golden Valley; Grant Matz, City of Isanti; Ian Corder, Ramsey County; Zack Kramka, City of Fridley.

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