Image of a sign that states "E-Learning Studio"

Training from the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits  (MCN) is about to get a lot more interactive with the addition of an e-Learning Studio. We appreciate our partnership with MCN, which goes back more than a decade, and stems from our shared value of building the capacity of people and organizations in the nonprofit sector. As a longtime partner of MCN, we cannot wait to see the new opportunities this addition will bring to light. 

We’re especially excited about the new space because The Improve Group CEO Leah Goldstein Moses will lead the first virtual training there with a 3-part series kicking off October 17.

Leah’s training on how to develop an evaluation plan will be highly interactive. With the participatory style of Leah’s training and the capabilities of the e-Learning studio, you’ll be able to start developing a plan before the 3-part series has concluded.

“We’re excited to be starting out with Leah,” said Sondra Reis, director of e-Learning at MCN.

At The Improve Group, we see the importance of capacity building for evaluation so organizations can do their work more effectively and have a greater impact.

We recently visited the space—a short jaunt from our office—to see it ourselves and chat with Sondra.

IG: Why did MCN add an e-Learning Studio?

Sondra: The goal with e-Learning is to increase our accessibility. Two-thirds of the state’s nonprofits are in the metro area, but those outside Minneapolis or Saint Paul are unlikely to attend if travel time exceeds the length of a workshop. This provides the opportunity to do what we’ve been doing in Saint Paul more broadly, and as more and more people look online to learn.

Rebecca Lucero (left), Public Policy Director and Corinna Turbes, Federal Policy Campaign Coordinator of the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits use the e-Learning Studio to create an informational video on MCN’s federal policy work

IG: What’s different about e-Learning?

Sondra: It’s more collaborative and engaging. Traditional training can be a lot more about the presentation, but with e-Learning, we aim to encourage audience participation every three to five minutes. This can include polls or opening up the lines for participants to share with the trainer and among each other.

IG: How did MCN build the studio?

Sondra: We recently remodeled our whole office, with an expansive second-floor space. As part of the change, we transformed an office into a nearly soundproof recording space. To insulate from truck and light-rail noise on nearby University Avenue, we used a second layer of drywall with special sound-proofing glue in between the layers. The studio includes different colors of backdrops and a green wall for adding visual effects.

IG: What kind of training will take place in the studio?

Sondra: With its different engagement opportunities and top-of-the-line equipment, the e-Learning Studio is a great opportunity for subject matter experts that are good trainers as well. Stay up-to-date on trainings as they are scheduled with MCN’s events calendar.

It’s not too late to sign up for Leah’s virtual training on “Developing Your Evaluation Strategy and Plan”! The training is a 3-week series that begins on October 17, from 10 a.m. to noon. Register here.