Mark Hanson grew up a half mile from Normandale Community College, and decided to go there after he graduated from Bloomington Jefferson High School in 1972. Hanson picked up a surveying job in Bloomington and worked while going to school part-time. He committed to going full-time in 1974, and received an Associate’s degree in Elected Studies in 1976.
After graduating from Normandale, Hanson went to work for Sunde Land Surveying, starting out as a chain man and rod man. During the next several years, Hanson worked in a number of roles for Sunde. In 1999, he purchased the company and became its president.
Through his surveying company, Hanson has been one of the key surveyors at the Mall of America site and the Minnesota Zoo, and has been part of every major construction project at Normandale since the early 1980s. He has seen Normandale grow in physical appearance throughout the years, and still believes the college has always been a critical part of the community.
“Normandale is a very different place from when I went there, but it still remains a very friendly college,” said Hanson. “It’s great for the area to have a college like Normandale. It’s convenient and affordable, and I think it’s a great place for students to find who they are and decide what the next steps are in their lives.”
Hanson has always enjoyed his interactions with Normandale instructors and employees. In fact, his wife, daughter, and son have all attended the college.
“I can say I never had a bad instructor at Normandale,” said Hanson. “Every one of them was very approachable and honestly seemed like they enjoyed their job and wanted to help people succeed. I’ve had the same experience as a student, working with Normandale through my job, and through watching my family members attend the college.”