Built By Alumni

Construction of the new Welcome Center and Learning Commons was completed by alumni working in industry.

Dunwoody alumni (from left) Pat Hogan, Tim Hansen, and Travis Nelson consult on the removal of electrical systems after the former guard building was taken down near the entrance to Dunwoody.

For many of the new industry professionals hired to complete construction of Dunwoody’s new Welcome Center and Learning Commons, it wasn’t their first time on campus. In fact, more than a dozen shared the distinction of being Dunwoody alums.

And the alumni connection extends even further. General contractor Mortenson Construction, was founded by M.A. Mortenson Sr., who was also a Dunwoody graduate.

When the expansion to the original Dunwoody building was constructed in 1924, Dunwoody sheet metal students, electrical students, and building construction students all had a hand in completing the project. Ninety-four years later, it was Dunwoody alumni who worked to complete the 24,000 square-foot renovation and expansion.

Tim Hansen, Project Manager, Parsons Electric

When Parsons Electric was hired to handle electrical construction for this project, it wasn’t an accident that Tim Hansen was brought in as the Project Manager.

“I saw that the renovation was happening and I emailed my boss,” said Hansen, a 2003 Electrical & Construction Maintenance graduate. “I went to school here, and I thought it would be great to be a part of the project.”

Hansen attended Dunwoody based on advice from his dad, who was also a Dunwoody grad. Hansen said it was good advice.

“Dunwoody gives you a good foundation for understanding the electrical industry,” Hansen said, adding that it provided him with the building blocks he needed to establish himself in the industry.

He’s been at Parsons for nine years and enjoys the work, the company culture, and the variety of projects he gets to work on.

Hansen has been part of teams that helped build the Mall of America expansion and Athletes Village at the University of Minnesota.

Travis Nelson, Foreman, Parsons Electric

Travis Nelson was working in a night club when he decided to apply to Dunwoody. He had an interest in electrical construction, and a friend who was attending encouraged him to check it out.

Nelson said his Dunwoody education really prepared him for his work in the industry. Nelson also found a place in the Union. His first year as an apprentice was with Parsons. He was later offered a position at the company and has been there for more than five years.

Now a Foreman for Parsons, Nelson was excited to be assigned to the Dunwoody project and has enjoyed seeing some of his former instructors.

Corey Stone, Associate Project Manager, Parsons Electric

Corey Stone has a long family connection to Dunwoody. In fact, four generations of the Stone family have attended the college, including his father Steve Stone. But there were multiple reasons why he made his decision to attend Dunwoody.

“I like that the classes and the College are structured and centered on preparing you for the real world,” said Stone. “I really felt motivated and supported every day, since students at Dunwoody are here for a purpose and want to learn.”

After graduating from Dunwoody, Stone spent time at a number of architectural firms. He made the switch to Parsons in 2009, where he helped develop their Building Information Modeling (BIM)/ Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) group.

Now an Associate Project Manager, Stone said he enjoys being more hands-on with many different aspects of the construction process. Throughout his career at Parsons, Stone has worked on some of the company’s largest jobs including construction of U.S. Bank Stadium.

Pat Hogan, Superintendent, Parsons Electric

Pat Hogan also has family who attended Dunwoody. Both his father and grandfather graduated from the sheet metal program.

Hogan, a 1997 Electrical Construction & Maintenance alum, said it wasn’t until after he tried a traditional four-year university and a community college that he decided to give Dunwoody a try.

He entered the electrical program knowing nothing about the industry, but the active, hands-on learning was a good fit for his learning style.

He joined the union after graduation and his last apprenticeship was at Parsons. He’s been there ever since. Now a Superintendent for the company, Hogan says he stayed at Parsons because of the people. “They are more like family,” he said.

The variety of projects has also kept the work interesting. Hogan has been able to work on projects like the Light Rail and U.S. Bank Stadium.

He hadn’t been back to Dunwoody since graduating, and said the job site has definitely brought back a lot of memories. The last time he was in the gymnasium was when he graduated.

Working on such an old building has been a challenge, but one Hogan said he enjoyed. “The renovation is impressive,” he said. “It really adds a nice element to the school and brings it more up-to-date.”

This article was written and published by Dunwoody College in their Friends and Alumni magazine.

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