December 31, 2003 at 1:15 p.m.
Contracts with these school districts and a group home provider, in North Branch, have brought the newest achievement center to reality. The NBAC, a ground floor building, is located at 5833 Pecan Street, North Branch, and is part of a new u-shaped mini mall complex behind the AmericInn. It consists of 1,800 sq. ft. of open space (except for a partitioned kitchen area). With movable partitions, the space is divided up into a kitchen, living room, bedroom, exercise and work areas.
The consumers (students and young adults) at this site will principally be engaged in community-based employment.
CLAC’s goal is to enhance agency collaboration while assisting schools to fulfill their mandate requirement for transition services. In order to achieve this goal as a major part of the services at this satellite, the CLAC has hired three very capable full-time and part-time staff for that purpose.
Students enroll in the Explore Program (multi job site exploration and training), and in semi-independent living skills training. Mark Hofmeister, Student Transition Coordinator, in the Life School 2000 curriculum, uses:
•Government and the Law
Hofmeister will also help teach driving as needed––what an opportunity!
It should also be noted that the CLAC also has a 2-bedroom apartment, in Chisago City, (available to students in the Chisago Lakes area) for semi-independent living skills training.
Meet our new satellite staff:
•Mark Hofmeister was born and raised in Springfield, Minn., a small farming community. He graduated from Springfield Public High School in 1966 and enrolled at Winona State College (University), was drafted into the U.S. Military (Army) for two years in his junior year. After completing the two-year stint in the military, he returned to Winona State College to complete and receive his B.S. degree in Industrial Education in Depth K-12, along with a license to teach drivers education, classroom and behind-the-wheel. He started his teaching experience (career) at Frances M. Grass Junior High, in West St. Paul, Minn., in 1973, teaching Junior High Industrial Arts and coaching football, baseball, and officiating basketball for four years. During this time he did graduate work in Secondary Administration, Industrial Arts and Special Education.
Hofmeister taught at Pine City High School, in Pine City, at the Junior High level in Industrial Arts, along with coaching football and baseball.
After a year at Pine City he made a major move to Special Education and started teaching Special Education at Northeast Metro #916 in White Bear Lake. He received a Masters Degree in Special Education from the College of St. Thomas, and continued teaching at Northeast Metro for 25 years before retiring in the summer of 2003, after a successful career.
He is a member of the Minnesota Driver and Traffic Safety Education Association (MDTSEA) and a Chair Member on the #916 Continuing Education Committee. Hofmeister enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities, but most of all motorcycle riding. He is married and has a son in college in Duluth.
•Mariah Biedermann, Satellite Coordinator Services, was born in Rockford, Minn. She started her college career in 11th grade at the University of Minnesota. She studied microbiology and chemistry while working part-time at Nekton Inc., a collaboration of group homes that served individuals with developmental disabilities. After six months, she was promoted to a residential supervisor position within Nekton Inc. During this time, Biedermann continued her education at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, studying Speech, Language and Hearing Pathology.
After researching diverse career opportunities, she decided to go back to college to complete her degree in Business Management with the University of Phoenix. This led her to go back into the field she loves––social services. She sought employment at the Chisago Lakes Achievement Center where she had the opportunity to utilize her training with individuals with developmental disabilities.
Biedermann is the program coordinator of the new facility. Her goal is to uphold the quality of services provided to the students and young adults at this center.
•Leann Hill (Trainer)
Hill has trained consumers in Supported Employment at the CLAC for more than four years. She was nominated and won “Job Coach of the Year” award in 2002.
•Sarah Rowell (Trainer)
Rowell has been a Job Coach at the CLAC for about five years. She was voted by staff and consumers and won the CLAC’s “Job Coach of the Year” 2000 award.
If you want to visit, have questions or requests for the center, please feel free to contact Mariah Biedermann and Mark Hofmeister at 651-277-0455 or e-mail: mariahbieder [email protected] or mark@nb achieve.org.