News, Events & Programs

Lori Joins Cole Hanson of Anoka County SHIP to Discuss Health and Wellness, Along With Other Community Leaders

MetroNorth Chamber supports Blaine High School students in state and national business competitions

(05/17/2023) The Business Professionals of America (BPA) chapter at Blaine High School – Center for Mathematics, Engineering and Science (BHS) has experienced a lot of success at the regional, state and national levels. A partnership with professionals at the school and in the community has sharpened the skills of the students and enabled them to reach high levels of success. READ MORE

Connexus Energy: Thank You!

The MetroNorth Chamber of Commerce Workforce Development Foundation recently received a $1,500 donation from Connexus Energy. Thank you for supporting the next generation in business! We are excited to put these funds to good use, with our mission to connecting students to career opportunities in the north metro. If you have an interest in supporting our workforce efforts and/or would like to learn more, contact Christine at

Career Panel at Park Center High School

The MetroNorth Chamber was proud to partner with Park Center High School to bring business professionals and students together for a Business Career Panel. Speed table discussions allowed students to ask questions and understand what steps it may take to enter into that career. Students were able to make immediate professional connections as well! Many thanks to the chamber members who joined us today. Contact Christine to learn about getting involved in our chamber’s workforce initiatives:

Trade Tours

On December 14, 2017, the Foundation conducted its first Trade Tour. Graco, RMS, and Mate Precision Tooling in Anoka hosted about 40 Anoka High School 9th and 10th graders for the day. Students learned about various career paths in the manufacturing field at companies located in their own community.

Instructors from Anoka Tech were on hand to explain different post-secondary instruction applicable to manufacturing careers as well. This was the first of many tours highlighting a variety of trades in the north metro area.


Tom Snell Scholarship Program

A $500 scholarship is awarded each year to a student in the northern suburbs who intends to enroll in a Minnesota public or private college or technical school and desires to pursue employment in the northern suburbs.

From 1985 – 2010 Tom Snell was Executive Director of the MetroNorth Chamber of Commerce.  During his 25 years of service, Tom not only made many accomplishments on behalf of the business community, but he was dedicated to education and our area’s local students.

The Tom Snell Business Scholarship is awarded annually to a student in the northern metro school district service area that exemplifies Tom’s aspirations for our community:

  • Business Leadership
  • Advocacy

    Tim Mafe, 2018 Snell Scholarship winner.

  • Education
  • Community Involvement

Each year the Foundation selects one area school to distribute the scholarship. High School Guidance Counselors select a graduating student within their school to receive the award based on the student’s ability to fulfill the eligibility requirements. The 2018 winner is Tim Mafe, a junior at Blaine High School with a focus on finance. Tim is a part of the Center for Engineering, Math, and Science as well as a two-year Business Professional of America member.

In The News

Fox 9 News Features Student Recruiter Program 

Watch the video and read the full article here.

Coon Rapids High School Program Linking Students With Job Opportunities Expands to Blaine High School 

Read Anoka-Hennepin Schools article here.

2017-2018 Pilot Program at Coon Rapids High School: Lori Higgins, MetroNorth Chamber; Brynn Nguyen, Julia Beczkalo, DECA Recruitment Specialists; Roger Johnson, ICS/Workforce Development Foundation

Student to Student Recruiters

Programs underway at Coon Rapids, Spring Lake Park and Blaine High Schools.

The Foundation believes that upper level, work-ready students are an untapped market to fill the pipeline of future workers in Minnesota. And not only are they untapped, they are almost off the radar of prospective employers. Most students do not have resumes, LinkedIn profiles, or other mediums by which an employer would traditionally find candidates. Yet what students all have in common is each other. Students communicate with each other via social media faster than we even realize. We are leveraging this by creating a pilot program, whereby selected students are contracted to communicate open positions – internships, apprenticeships, part time, full time, etc. to their networks.

Our Student to Student Recruiter program involves DECA students and job openings from MetroNorth Chamber Members. Read this ABC Newspapers article to learn about our Coon Rapids program.

In partnership with the MN Chamber of Commerce.

Past Events/Programs

2018-19 Spring Lake Park High School: DECA students

2018-19 Blaine Bengal Link: DECA students Kim Vo and Tim Mafe.

2018-19 Coon Rapids Cardinal Connections: DECA Students Salam and Brynn.

MN Manufacturing Tours -October 2017

We conducted three tours during Minnesota Manufacturing Week. Nearly 90 people saw firsthand the 21st century high tech manufacturing careers offered in the north metro. Tours took place at Mate Precision Tooling in Anoka, Green Bay Packaging in Coon Rapids, and Aggressive Hydraulics, in Cedar.


MetroNorth Chamber of Commerce Career Fair – January 19, 2017

The Foundation was a presenting sponsor of the MetroNorth Chamber Career Fair in January 2017. The Fair took place at Northtown Mall in Blaine and was heavily attended by both students and adults. They had an opportunity to meet with 34 potential employers in the north metro area.

MN Manufacturing Week- October 2016 

The Foundation sponsored two tours of local manufacturing facilities in October 2016. These tours were in conjunction with MN Manufacturing Week. They were open to the public and gave students and their families a look at what a career in manufacturing looks like.

Aggressive Hydraulics in East Bethel opened their doors on October 4 to over 40 people with abehind-the-scenes look at their fascinating world of hydraulics. It’s not what your grandfather–or even your father’s manufacturing job looked like. Think high-tech computers, clean floors,and bright lights!

We’ve all seen Salted Nut Rolls and Jack Links on a display, but on October 6, students and the general public were able to see first-hand how these display products are made. Green Bay Packaging in Coon Rapids hosted tours to 50 people. From creating their own corrugated, to the finished product, this exciting process was seen.