The Task: Identify an exceptional training facility to house the newly-created Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (CWTA), a joint initiative of the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS)Opens in new window and the Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare (CASCW)Opens in new window. An exhaustive search resulted in the discovery of 22,173 square feet located in the Rosewood Office PlazaOpens in new window in Roseville, Minnesota.

On December 12 the contract lease for this new training facility was approved by the University of Minnesota Board of Regents, and renovations will soon move forward to create the future training site for the Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy. Finalization of the leasing contract is expected by the end of this month. A facilities team has been working closely with architects and contractors, and the reconstruction is expected to begin in early 2020.

This ideal location was identified due to its proximity to the Twin Cities numerous access points for travel, as well as an abundance of parking, networking capacity, and flexible training space. Additionally, there are numerous amenities in close proximity, such as hotels with shuttles, restaurants and food options, and more. Learn more about the Roseville community hereOpens in new window!

The training facility itself will be able to increase much-needed training capacity, reduced wait times for new worker training, and offer improvements of new worker Foundation training. Occupying 2.5 floors, the Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy will offer state of the art training space, meeting rooms with teleconferencing capacity, a computer lab, a video production space for enhanced training content, simulation rooms for skill development and demonstration, a learner lounge and break space, administrative offices, and an innovation center for technology enhancements.

Some of those enhancements will be developed as part of a collaboration with Educational Technology Innovations (ETI)Opens in new window, a program that is part of the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) at the University of Minnesota. ETI strives to build products that make a difference for those that need it most.

Training facility reconstruction should be completed by June 2020. Staff from each of the agencies involved in this collaboration will begin to occupy the building at that time. The next phase of this project includes a Request for Proposal (RFP) process this coming spring to establish four additional training spaces, or ‘hubs’, to offer better access and statewide training throughout Greater Minnesota.

We will continue to keep you updated on this exciting project as we learn more. Go to to sign-up for regular Training Academy updates.