Thief River Fall's Northland Main Campus and Northland Aerospace are now offering the full campus experience in one day!

Join us on April 11, 2024 for Experience Northland Expo Day!

Brought to you by NCTC and the National Center for Autonomous Technologies (NCAT), Experience Northland Expo Day is open to all students (grades 7-12) and teachers, and now with two sites to visit, it offers a larger variety of 50-minute hands-on learning activities directly related to Northland programs. Schools/students can choose to attend one session or make it a day-trip and attend sessions throughout the day. Students also do not have to limit themselves to one campus. They can choose sessions from each of the campuses!

All sessions are 100% cost-free! Register as soon as possible. Last year's events filled up quickly.

Transportation between campuses will be provided. See the Location tab for further details.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Northland/NCAT team directly at ncat@northlandcollege.edu.

We invite the community to join us on April 11, 2024 from 5PM - 8PM to Experience the Northland Aerospace in Thief River Falls, Minnesota.

Come in and discover the high-tech programs that Northland Aerospace has to offer! Our 86,000 square foot facility features a state-of-the-art hangar, housing over 20 aircraft including a DC-9 that was owned and donated by the Detroit Pistons NBA team! This is not your typical open house event. While we will have all the information you need about how to enroll into a Northland program, this open house event is really about the Northland Aerospace Experience. Prepare to launch yourself into a typical day for a Northland Aerospace student!

Whether you are a community member who's never seen the Aerospace campus, a high school student who’s interested in learning more about Northland's technical programs, or a Northland Alumni looking to revisit the 'good old days', this event has something for everyone! Join us and experience Northland Aerospace.

Activities will include:
- Hop inside the cockpit of an aircraft.
- Roll up your sleeves and rivet joints on an aircraft.
- Dive into the world of virtual reality and fly a race drone.
- Take control of a land robot on a competition field.
- Fly a drone through the REC's Aerial Drone Competition course.
- Design and fly a paper airplane.
- Learn about basic electricity with Spintronics games.
- Build drones/airplanes with Legos.

Aerospace Workshops

Workshop A - Fundamentals of Composites (2-Hours) - Composites Lab
Advanced composites are becoming more and more common in a wide variety of industries these days. Once found primarily on military and commercial aircraft, materials like carbon fiber, Kevlar, and glass fiber can now be found on unmanned aerial systems, wind turbine blades, automobiles, trains, and a host of other products we see and use every day. We will conduct a 2-hour hands-on course designed to impart basic knowledge of composites materials and help students understand some of the industrial applications of these amazingly strong and lightweight materials. This workshop includes a lab activity - assembly of a composite part that students will get to take home.

Workshop B - Discover Northland Aerospace I - Swenson Hangar
Come on in and discover what Northland Aerospace campus has to offer. Our 86,000 square foot facility features a state-of-the-art hangar, housing over 20 aircraft including a DC-9 that was owned and donated by the Detroit Pistons NBA team! Hop inside the cockpit of an aircraft, become an AMT student through a hands-on activities, such as riveting and sheet metal. Do you think you have what it takes to be a technician for autonomous systems? We do! Dive into the world of virtual reality and test your flight skills by flying a drone through the Aerial Drone Competition course. Learn how all these activities directly tie to programs that Northland Aerospace has to offer.

Workshop C - STEAM Electrical and Automation - Classroom 28
Are you interested in electronics and automation? If so, this is the class for you! Students will be able to choose from multiple activities such as working with Arduino, programmable logic controllers, configuring networks, and learning how to operate a skillboss.

Workshop D - Discover Industrial Design - Classroom 31
How companies bring a product or vehicle to life. Do you like to be creative? Do you like problem solving? Are you interested in a job that has opportunities in your hometown and all over the world? In this intro, we look at how companies (such as Dyson, Arctic Cat, Polaris, Lamborghini, Apple and Coca Cola) use the creative process and industrial design to set themselves apart to create great products that we interact with every day. Students will be guided through the initial steps of bringing an idea to life through sketching, clay modeling, and physical model making.

Workshop E - Real Flight and Flight Simulators - Classroom 5-6
Are you ready to learn how to take off into the wild blue sky? With our variety of flight simulators, you can come get a feel for flight. Also in this class, you will learn the basics of flight, including the use of the instrument panel, how to read the instruments, takeoff and landing procedures, and other interesting rules of the air.

Workshop F - A Day in the Life of an Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) - Classroom 8
Curious what an AMT does on a typical day? Join us to see for yourself! Learn about jobs and current salaries in our area and around the United States. Learn what the expectations are of students in the Northland AMT program and in the workforce. This session will wrap up with a Q&A and an overview of how a turbine engine works, including an explanation of the differences between turbine and reciprocating aircraft engines.

Workshop G - Build a NewBee Drone (2-Hours) - Classroom 9
In this fun class, you will learn how to build, fly and disassemble a NewBee drone! NewBees are personal-sized drones that are perfect for both new flyers and experienced pilots. To learn more about NewBee drones, visit their online store here.

Workshop H - DroneTech World of Drones - Classroom 10
Experience the exciting world of Drones! Did you know that drones are no longer just used for recreation? More and more, we are finding ways that drones can be of use to us and make life easier. In DroneTech World of Drones, learn how drones in the air, on the land, and in the sea are helping our lives and the world around us. Work with your team to design a drone that will help solve a problem, meet a critical need, or expand what is possible.

Workshop I - Electronics Concepts with Spintronics - Classroom 11
Join us for the opportunity to understand electronics and computing in a whole new way. Rather than tell you what's happening in a circuit, let us show you with Spintronics. Feel the resistance, feel the pull of voltage, and watch the current flow. This hands-on activity is fun and easy and is an excellent way to learn engineering concepts!

Workshop J - Learning to Solder - Build a Bug - Classroom 12
Are you interested in soldering but don’t know how to get started? We can teach you! This hands-on lesson is made even more impactful with a soldering board that lights up to signify how much light is getting to the photosensor. With this new-found skill, you can begin the path towards careers in jewelry, electronics, air conditioning and heating, sheet metal work, and much more!

Accounting/Business – All 4 Sessions – Room 703
Accounting program provides the knowledge and skills necessary to prepare financial statements and reports for a business, including the ability to examine, analyze, interpret, and correct accounting data and records. The business world today is facing rapid changes, creating an increased demand for well-trained professionals to fill positions in all areas of the business industry. An Associate in Science degree builds a strong foundation of leadership and managerial skills to effectively manage people, organizations, and technology in the increasingly competitive global business world.

Ag/Animal Science – All 4 Sessions – Room 705/706
Agricultural Education is an opportunity to utilize your agricultural skills and talents to discover, engage and teach our future agriculturists. Agriculture Education provides the opportunity to impact lives by educating others about this vital industry and mainstay of our country. Animal Science Diploma allows students to explore the field of animal science with emphasis on livestock animals. Technological advances in the animal sciences have contributed to a safe, healthy, abundant, & inexpensive food supply.

Autobody – All 4 Sessions – Room 719
Formal training in Auto Body Collision Technology is highly desirable because advances in technology in recent years have greatly changed the structure, components, and even materials used in automobiles. This program is designed for entry level education in the Auto Body Collision Repair industry.

Automotive – All 4 Sessions – Room 721
The Automotive Service Technician is a person working in an exciting and rapidly changing industry. Students in this program will receive training in the many service and diagnostic procedures necessary to maintain our Nation on wheels. Students are trained in modern laboratories equipped with current service and testing equipment.

Criminal Justice – All 4 Sessions – Room 654/655
The Criminal Justice program prepares students for careers with city, state, federal, private, and other criminal justice agencies. While the program is designed primarily for entry-level law enforcement, many students choose courses that lead to careers in other areas of the Criminal Justice system, such as public safety communications, corrections, and probation work.

Nursing – 3 Sessions (1st, 2nd, & 3rd Session) - Room 604/631
Nursing is a growing field with multiple career opportunities. Practical Nursing is designed to provide the knowledge and skills necessary for students to enter the world of nursing. Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) may provide care for persons of all ages in a variety of settings including hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, home care, hospice, camp nursing and occupational nursing. The AD Mobility Nursing program educates Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) for the role of Registered Nurse (RN). The RN role includes a broad area of human service aimed at assisting the client in attaining the highest level of health possible.

Welding – All 4 Sessions – Room 651
The Welding Process Technology diploma was designed in cooperation with regional manufacturing companies to prepare the student for a career in a welding or welding-related field. The program offers scheduling flexibility where students work at their own pace allowing motivated individuals or those with prior knowledge to complete courses faster. Students will be able to Weld either Stick or Wire Feed.

Would you like to explore exciting STEM careers? New this year to Experience Northland is our Mini Career Fair! We are pleased to welcome area companies with a variety of STEM careers available, including designing aircraft, maintaining drones, flight instruction, and much more!

  • Fargo Jet Center
    Whether you are interested in aircraft sales, maintenance, charter services and management, or more, we have opportunities for you at Fargo Jet Center. Based out of Hector International Airport in Fargo and with sister companies in Eden Prairie, MN, you can live the midwestern life and enjoy an aerospace career. For more about us, visit Fargo Jet Center

  • Bemidji Air
    Bemidji Air’s slogan “We Can’t Fly Without You” is not just a message for passengers. It’s for you! Bemidji Air is looking for certified mechanics and technicians to work on their 50 aircraft fleet. Get your certification here at Northland and then discover the beauty of Bemidji and the family at Bemidji Air. For more career information, visit Bemidji Air

  • Cirrus Aircraft
    Cirrus Aircraft is an aviation company with careers in flight instruction, A&P mechanics, and aircraft production, constructing world-renowned aircraft. For more career information, visit Cirrus Aircraft


  • Aethero
    Conceived through a joint love for UND buildings, Aethero uses UAS technology and AI-based data analytics to determine a building’s current structural health. Aethero provides data that assists customers in saving money and saves beautiful buildings in the process. For more information, visit Aethero

  • UND Aerospace
    There is nothing like the birds-eye-view of the beautiful northern Red River Valley! For that, UND Aerospace is the place to be. We operate one of the largest fleets of civilian aircraft in North America, and we are looking for maintenance technicians to assist in our highly-respected aviation and UAS flight education programs. Following your experience in aircraft maintenance, from Northland, you’re just what we’re looking for! For more information, visit UND Aerospace

  • Prairie Air
    With more than five decades of experience, Prairie Air Inc. is a helicopter maintenance provider. It is the Midwest's most popular Robinson Helicopter Service Center. It is a family owned company that provides quality apprenticeships. For information about this exciting Elbow Lake company, visit Prairie Air

  • Digi-Key
    Located right here in Northland’s own backyard, Digi-Key is an electronic component distributor quickly reaching the top of the global ladder with a variety of career opportunities. With over 6.5 million orders processed each year, we are proud of our accomplishments and hopes to help you reach your career goals at Digi-Key. For more career information visit Digi Key Careers

  • General Atomics
    We work in innovative technology, developing solutions for everything from remotely piloted aircraft systems to laser technologies and nuclear fuel cycle. If you join our company, you will create opportunities for yourself and the world! If you have a vision, we may have a place for you. For career information, visit General Atomics Careers

  • ARC
    Gain a highly desirable skillset in only 2 years with Northland’s Mechatronics A.A.S. program. The Advanced Resource Center for Innovation and Education (ARC) located in Warroad, MN collaborates with Northland and is a dedicated resource bringing advanced manufacturing education and skill development to people and industry in northwest Minnesota. For more information, visit ARC

  • Marvin Windows
    Marvin Windows is the perfect company to work for if you're looking to "go green". This year's recipients of both the NAIOP and ULI Awards, Marvin Windows has a large variety of careers available in 16 locations around the United States, and the company is expanding. For career information, visit Marvin Windows

  • Arctic Cat/Textron
    Our name speaks for itself! We’re known throughout the nation as a leader in snow, ATV, and off road technologies. Joining our team could be a great opportunity for you. To apply, visit Arctic Cat/Textron

  • Northrop Grumman
    Northrop Grumman is a global technology company with careers in designing aircraft, digital tech, or even building spacecraft. You could join our team of 95,000 employees with careers across all domains: air, land, sea, cyber, and even space. Join us at Northrop Grumman and make a difference in our world. For more career information visit Northrop Grumman Careers

  • StandardAero
    Founded in 1911, StandardAero is proud to have become a leader in independent aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul. With locations worldwide, StandardAero focuses on teamwork and because of this has resolved aviation challenges throughout history. The company is now looking towards the future of aviation repair and maintenance. To learn how you can be part of the their team, visit StandardAero

  • Machinewell, Inc
    Welcome to Machinewell, Inc.! This northern MN company specializes in machining, welding, and fabricating of components and works with a variety of metals as well plastics. With two machine shops, a welding shop, and a research and development shop, working for Machinewell will give you the small town feel with big time production! For more information, visit Machinewell, Inc

  • Corporate Air
    Having derived from a small aircraft freight company in Montana, Corporate Air now operates facilities in five additional states. From plains and mountains to beaches and volcanoes, Corporate Air provides their pilots and maintenance crew with a high quality of life. They prioritize professional and career growth by providing up-to-date training on the technology advancements. For more information, visit Corporate Air

  • Students have the opportunity to attend workshops at BOTH locations: Main and Aerospace. Students will check in at the location of their first class. We ask that they arrive 15-30 minutes prior to their first activity start-time to allow enough time for check-in.

    To give your drivers time to drop off students at their first location, we will begin classes at Aerospace 10 minutes after classes begin at Main, so please have your drivers drop off all students whose first class is at Main PRIOR TO bringing the remaining students to Aerospace.

    At 1:30 p.m., please have your drivers pick up any students whose last workshop is at Main and bring those students to Aerospace.
    All students will then be able to take advantage of our exciting Career Fair before loading up and heading home at 2:30 p.m.!

    We will provide transportation between campus throughout the day, with the exception of their initial drop off and final pick up times.

    Please note the Example Schedule below.


    Main Time Main Class Aero Time Aero Class
    8:30 - 8:50am Registration 8:30 - 9:00 Registration/Career Fair
    9:00 - 9:50am 1st Program Visit 9:10 - 10:00 Class 1
    10:00-10:50am 2nd Program Visit 10:10 - 11:00 Class 2
    11:00-11:50am Lunch 11:00 - 12:00 Lunch/Career Fair
    12:00-12:50pm 3rd Program Visit 12:10 - 1:00 Class 3
    1:00-1:30pm 4TH Program Visit 1:10 - 2:00 Class 4
    1:30pm Departure Main campus and head to the Aerospace Site 2:00 - 2:30 Career Fair

    This schedule shows an example of a school/student who participates in a full-day of workshops. Participation in all workshops is not required. If your school/student can only participate in one workshop throughout the day, simply register for that hour/workshop only.

    We ask that if you plan to bring a group of students, each student should be registered for a workshop during each 50-minute block during the time they are present. We want to ensure all students who attend are also participating in the workshops.

    Registration for the event has now closed however we do have limited spot available. If you are interested in registering for this event please email NCAT@northlandcollege.edu for more information.

    Northland Community and Technical College has multiple locations! Experience Northland Expo Day gives your students the opportunity to explore two of the our wonderful sites: Main and Aerospace! See below for location details:

    NCTC Main Campus
    1101 State Hwy 1
    Thief River Falls, MN 56701

    Please drop students off at the main door. Buses may park in the west parking lot. (Door D)

    NCTC Aerospace Campus -- located next to the Thief River Falls Regional Airport.
    13892 Airport Drive
    Thief River Falls, MN 56701

    Please park in the East Parking Lot (next to the highway) and use the East Entrance.

    Note: If students are coming to both locations, drivers should drop off students who are attending their initial class at Main first and before bringing the remaining students to Aerospace. We will provide transportation throughout the day; however, please have your drivers pick up students from Main at 1:30 p.m. and bring them to Aerospace so that they attend the Career Fair until 2:30 p.m. Final loadout will be at 2:30 from Aerospace campus.

    If you need accommodations to attend this event, please contact us as soon as possible.

    Megan Hall
    Office Administrative Specialist| NCAT
    (218) 683-8826

    Did you know?

    Experience Northland Aerospace derives from a large-scale Experience STEAM event that was hosted by the National Center for Autonomous Technologies (NCAT) and Northland Community and Technical College at Mall of America in August 2022. This was an event set to inspire social and economic mobility enabled by access to opportunities inspiring students to consider emerging technology and technician career fields. The NCAT and Northland team took that vision and have replicated it to serve our own community.
    About Experience STEAM at Mall of America
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