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NEWS STORIES

Nicolet College's dual credit program size nearly doubles in four yearsSubmitted: 04/30/2013
Story By Lane Kimble

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RHINELANDER - Paying for college keeps getting harder and harder. Wisconsin schools raised tuition rates pretty much every budget session lately.

That makes finishing school in a timely manner financially important.

Nicolet College in Rhinelander helped start the transcripted credit program four years ago.

Students can earn some college credits while still in high school.

They learn college-level material in their own high school classrooms, taught by their own teachers - all while earning both high school and college credit.

Nicolet College president Elizabeth Burmaster thinks students are up to the challenge.

"It is a college course that is rigorous and demanding," Burmaster said. "But it is offered to high school students, so they have to be ready for it and they have to work hard in order to succeed in any college course."

Nicolet's program began at Rhinelander and Elcho High Schools.

But it's nearly doubled in the last four years, reaching most Northwoods districts.

Students can now get credits in business, accounting, welding and medical fields through Nicolet.

More than 21,000 students statewide take part through local technical colleges.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
Kenosha-area officials call for casino approvalSubmitted: 08/27/2014

MADISON - Leaders from southeastern Wisconsin and Democratic state lawmakers say Gov. Scott Walker should immediately approve the Menominee tribe's proposed casino in Kenosha because it would put people back to work.

They came together Wednesday to put pressure on Walker to approve the casino. The Bureau of Indian Affairs gave its OK for the casino a year ago but Walker has until Feb. 19 to sign off on it.

Walker said in a letter to lawmakers on Tuesday that he's moving cautiously because he's concerned about the effect on the state budget.

The Forest County Potawatomi has refused to make its annual casino revenue payment to the state as Walker negotiates with it.

Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos says he thinks Walker is moving as quickly as he can.

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Northwoods gun safety discussions following Arizona shooting instructor deathSubmitted: 08/27/2014

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RHINELANDER - The accidental death of a shooting instructor in Arizona raises questions about what kinds of guns children should learn to shoot.

A 9-year-old girl was learning how to fire a fully-automatic weapon on Monday. The recoil was too much for her to handle. As a result, she ended up firing several rounds uncontrollably and one of the rounds hit her instructor in the head. Some gun instructors in the Northwoods wonder why a young girl was using a fully-automatic weapon in the first place.

"Firearms training is an evolutionary thing," said Bruce Gary, an NRA certified shooting instructor. "You don't go from a training rifle to a machine gun. It was a horrible accident that frankly was preventable. And I don't understand why this instructor put a machine gun in the hands of a 9-year-old girl."

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Chippewa Falls man charged with 10th OWI in Oneida CountySubmitted: 08/27/2014

ONEIDA COUNTY - A Chippewa Falls man faces more than 12 years in prison if convicted of driving under the influence for the 10th time.

An Oneida County Sheriff's deputy stopped 43-year-old Edward Luedke just before 8 p.m. on August 22nd.

Court documents say the deputy noticed an SUV weaving in its lane and crossing the center line on Highway 17 near Hat Rapids Road.

The officer said Luedke had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and slow movement.

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Michigan House OKs measure allowing wolf huntingSubmitted: 08/27/2014

MICHIGAN'S U.P. - The Michigan Legislature has cleared the way to allow continued hunting of gray wolves, a species that once had disappeared from the state but now thrives in the Upper Peninsula.

The state House voted 65-43 Wednesday in favor of a citizen-initiated measure that would empower the Michigan Natural Resources Commission to designate game species and regulate hunting. The Senate approved the measure earlier this month.

Because the governor's signature isn't required on citizen initiatives, it now becomes law.

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McDonald's hostage taker to spend more than 26 years in mental institutionSubmitted: 08/27/2014

SHAWANO COUNTY - The man who held a Wittenberg McDonald's employee hostage in April will spend more than 26 years in a mental institution.

Tuesday, a judge sentenced 29-year-old gunman Travis Keiler of Gillett to 26 and a half years in a mental institution.

Keiler had been found not guilty by mental disease or defect for taking hostages and failing to comply with an officer.

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Man who caused an elementary school to be put on lockdown could have charges dismissed Submitted: 08/27/2014

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RHINELANDER - Police think Michael Schettino pointed a handgun at another driver on Highway 51 in May. Police say he then drove through the parking lot of MHLT Elementary school in Minocqua. The school was put on lockdown because of what happened.

Schettino was in court Wednesday. He took a plea agreement. His two misdemeanors could be dismissed if he follows the terms of the agreement for two years.

"The state has the option if they have evidence indicating that you have not complied with the terms of the agreement to bring this matter back into court," Judge Michael Bloom told Schettino, "and if they presented evidence to establish that you were not in compliance that I could enter judgment on your pleas without any further proceedings and go immediately to sentencing."

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Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce welcomes new executive directorSubmitted: 08/27/2014

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MINOCQUA - The Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce just welcomed a new executive director.

Krystal Westfahl started in the position August 21st.

She comes to the Northwoods from Appleton.

Westfahl is no stranger to the Northwoods.

She vacationed up here with her family.

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