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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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January 18, 2006 Campus Newsletter

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Fulbright Scholarship Logo
Fiszdon, Laverny-Rafter win Fulbright Awards

Jerzy K. Fiszdon (Mechanical Engineering) and David Laverny-Rafter (Urban and Regional Studies) have received 2005-2006 Fulbright awards.

Jerzy and David are among approximately 850 U.S. faculty members and professionals who received 2005-2006 Fulbright grants to lecture and conduct research abroad.

Jerzy will teach and do research from January through June at the University of Botswana. He will develop a research program in energy resources and alternative energy and alternative energy utilization. He will also help in the development of a master of science program, further develop and instruct a course in the current curriculum, help faculty members redesign their courses, and present a seminar on energy utilization.

David has been researching the impact of light rail transit and conducting comparative research of European and American light rail systems. He will meet with the University of Southampton Transportation Research Group for three weeks in May. This is his third Fulbright appointment; previous awards are from 1986 and in 1995. His 2006 Fulbright position is designed to allow experienced professors to consult with overseas institutions on academic issues.

The Fulbrights to Jerzy and David are the 18th and 19th at Minnesota State Mankato. Several students also have received Fulbright student scholarships, and last year the university was cited as one of the nation's top producers of student Fulbright Awards.

Established in 1946 by the late Sen. J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Scholars Program's intent is to build mutual understanding between the people of the United States and other countries. It is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and participating governments and host institutions. Fulbright scholars demonstrate extraordinary leadership in their respective fields and are selected based on academic or professional achievement.

New tuition waiver guidelines

Minnesota State Colleges logoThe university has been notified by the Office of the Chancellor of new tuition waiver guidelines. You can download the new [PDF] guidelines (869 KiB).

Among other things, the new guidelines:

  • Clarify that tuition waiver may be applied only for courses for which credit is granted;
  • Require all users of tuition waiver benefits to submit tuition waiver forms no later than 10 business days following the start of the course for which the user seeks waiver;
  • Specify that tuition waiver benefits may not be expanded through banded tuition.

You can download the [PDF] application form (170 KiB).

The guidelines also set forth important information related to taxation of tuition benefits. Employees should understand these issues before proceeding with tuition waiver applications. Those who have any questions should contact Human Resources at 507-389-2015.

Campus Rec, TCF Bank offer free recreation memberships

Campus Recreation logoFree faculty-staff memberships to Otto Recreation Center for Spring Semester 2006 are being offered by Minnesota State Mankato Campus Recreation and TCF Bank.

Faculty and staff members qualify for the free membership by opening a new TCF MavCard Faculty & Staff Checking Account. Those who already have TCF MavCard Checking Accounts may qualify by referring another faculty or staff member to open a new account.

New accounts must be opened by Friday, Jan. 20, to qualify for the free membership.

Combined Charity logo
Combined Charities pledges increase by 70 percent

Employee pledges to the 2005 Combined Charities Campaign increased by 69.8 percent compared to last year, according to the final report of the campaign steering committee.

The report shows that campaign pledges rank second among Minnesota's seven state universities. Pledges increased to $34,812 this year, and the average pledge per pay period increased by 74 percent.

The annual campaign was conducted Oct. 3-28. It helps community based service organizations such as United Way of Greater Mankato, the Minnesota Environmental Fund, Community Solutions Fund, Community Health Charities, Open Your Heart, and a variety of other causes. The campaign is chaired by Scott Johnson, dean of the College of Business.

H. Dean Trauger postpones retirement

President Richard Davenport announced today that H. Dean Trauger has agreed not to retire as vice president for finance and administration until a successor is appointed later this year. Last August Dean said that he would retire this month.

"Dean has agreed to continue full-time until we find a successor who can provide the financial leadership and vision that will take us to the next level," said President Davenport. "Dean has provided that leadership for more than three decades, and I know he is looking forward to retirement. I am grateful that he has agreed to stay until his successor arrives, which should be no later than July 1."

Vice President for Technology and Chief Information Officer Mark Johnson is chairing the national search for Dean's replacement.

Tips for reducing postal costs

Postal Service logoPostal rates and fees increased by approximately 5.4 percent on Jan. 8. The new rates are listed below, as well as postage savings tips from University Postal Services.

The rate increase—first since 2002—is needed to fulfill the 2003 federal law requiring the Postal Service to establish a $3.1 billion escrow account.

Among the rate adjustments, the single-piece rate for first-class mail will increase from 37 cents to 39 cents, and the postcard rate will increase by one cent, to 24 cents. Selected rate changes include:

First-Class Mail Letter (1 oz.)37¢39¢
First-Class Mail Letter (2 oz.)60¢63¢
Priority Mail (1 lb.)$3.85$4.05
Express Mail (1/2 lb.)$13.65$14.40
Express Mail (up to 2 lb.)$17.85$18.80
Certified Mail$2.30$2.40
Return Receipt (Original Signature)$1.75$1.85
Return Receipt (Electronic)$1.30$1.35
Delivery Confirmation (Priority )45¢50¢
Delivery Conf. (1st-Class Parcels)55¢60¢
Money Orders (Up to $500)90¢95¢

International rates, determined separately from domestic prices, will be adjusted to coincide with the domestic rate changes. International rates have not been adjusted since January 2001.

Postage savings tips from university Postal Services:

  • Screen your mailing lists for any unnecessary names, duplicates and incomplete addresses.
  • Take advantage of the services offered by Office Support Services to address, barcode and sort your large-volume mailings. Office Support Services also can cleanse mailing lists.
  • Use certified mail instead of registered mail whenever possible. Registered mail is typically used for mailing items of a high value.
  • Use postcards for short messages or announcements. The cost is one-third less than sending an envelope.
  • FAX or e-mail the information when time is crucial instead of using express mail or overnight services. Overnight costs are the number one "runaway cost" of large businesses. "Rate shop" your package; you might be able to send it as ground and still meet your service standards.
  • Do not over-insure. The post office and other carriers will only pay the actual value of an item; not the declared value.

Sabbatical leaves awarded to faculty members

President Richard Davenport has awarded sabbatical leaves to the following faculty members for the 2006-07 academic year:

College of Allied Health & Nursing: Judith Kuster, Speech, Hearing and Rehabilitation Services (spring).

College of Arts & Humanities: Rea Mingeva, Art (fall); Gwen Griffin, English (AY) and Kathleen Hurley, English (AY); Kimberly Contag, Modern Languages (AY) and James Grabowska, Modern Languages (AY); Richard Liebendorfer, Philosophy (AY); Nanette Johnson-Curiskis, Speech Communication (spring); Warren Sandmann (fall); Nina LeNoir, Theatre and Dance (fall), David McCarl, Theatre and Dance (fall).

College of Business: Rakesh Kawatra, Management, (fall); Howard Miller, Management (AY); Timothy Scott, Management (AY).

College of Education: Walter Roberts, Counseling & Student Personnel (AY); Peggy Ballard, Educational Studies: Elementary & Early Childhood (spring); Marla Mastin, Educational Studies: Elementary & Early Childhood (AY); Debra Anderson, Educational Studies: K-12 & Secondary Programs (fall); Don Descy, Educational Studies: K-12 & Secondary Programs (fall).

College of Science, Engineering & Technology: Alison Mahoney, Biological Sciences (AY); Brock McMillan, Biological Sciences (fall); Steven Mercurio, Biological Sciences (AY); Edward Williams, Biological Sciences (spring); Marie Pomije, Chemistry & Geology (AY); Cyrus Azarbod, Computer & Information Sciences (AY); Steven Case, Computer & Information Sciences (AY); Lee Cornell, Computer & Information Sciences (AY); Francis Hannick, Mathematics & Statistics (AY); Pavel Kitsul, Mathematics & Statistics (AY); Saeed Moaveni, Mechanical & Civil Engineering (AY); Mark Pickar, Physics & Astronomy (AY).

College of Social & Behavioral Sciences: Richard Schiming, Economics (spring); Branko Colakovic, Geography (AY); Kathleen Gorman, History (AY); Fred Slocum, Political Science/Law Enforcement (spring); Barry Ries, Psychology (spring); Joe Davis, Sociology & Corrections (spring); Barbara Keating, Sociology & Corrections (AY); Pedro Thomas, Sociology & Corrections (AY); William Wagner, Sociology & Corrections (fall or spring); Janet Cherrington-Cucore, Urban & Regional Studies (spring); Maria Bevacqua, Women's Studies (spring).

Several parking lots to be closed for part of summer

This summer the campus will undergo major utility repair work on Maywood and West Roads, resulting in road and parking lot closures from May 16 to August 1.

Because summer will be upon us soon, it's not too early start planning for alternate arrangements for those who might be affected by the projects. A summary of the closures:

  • Maywood Avenue from Ellis Street to the middle of West Road.
  • Lot 12 Gold: This is the small lot behind the Library. Gold owners can park in Lot 11 or 11A (located at the west end of the Library & CSU).
  • Maywood Gold: This is on-street parking between the Library and Crawford-Mac. Gold owners can park in Lot 11 or 11A.
  • Rugby Gold: This is on-street parking across from the Rugby pitch. Gold owners can park in Lot 11 or 11A.
  • Lot 13: The majority of this lot will be used by contractors for the utility work on Maywood and various other residence hall renovations projects. Summer school parking will still use the Crawford end of Lot 13; however, most other past users will be directed to Lot 16 behind the Performing Arts Center. Since Maywood will be closed, a temporary entrance to Lot 13 will be installed off of Ellis Street into the lot.

In addition to these lengthy closures, we have parking lot repair work at the Alumni Foundation and Lot 20 which will result in shorter duration closures.

Lot 19 behind the Alumni Foundation will be closed for two weeks sometime during the summer. Alternate parking arrangements for users and specific closure dates for this lot will be provided at a later date.

Lot 20 across from Blakeslee Stadium will have two exits removed, additional curbing added, a connecting road to Lot 21 added, and be overlaid with asphalt. It will be closed from May 16 through July 1. We anticipate using the north end of lot 21 for past users who have historically used lot 20 during the summer.

Stay tuned for additional updates as we approach the summer months.

Jan. 26: Singer/songwriter Charlie Parr

Singer/songwriter Charlie Parr will be featured in Minnesota State Mankato's first spring semester Performance Series concert on Thursday, Jan. 26.

The event will be at 7:30 p.m. in Halling Recital Hall of the Performing Arts Center. Parr plays original and traditional folk and Piedmont-style blues on National resonator guitars, 12-string guitar and banjo. He regularly tours the United States and Europe, in addition to making appearances on "Prairie Home Companion."

Other Performance Series events, also in Halling Recital Hall:

  • Tuesday, Jan. 31: New Primitives - Ska, Reggae, and Calypso music;
  • Tuesday, Feb. 7: Latin Sounds Orchestra - Eight piece Afro-Cuban and Afro-Carribean group;
  • Wednesday, Feb.15: Mick Sterling - Eleven piece Rhythm n' Blues and Gospel group;
  • Saturday, March 4: Chris Vadala - Former Chuck Mangione saxophonist;
  • Thursday, April 6: Gary Motley - Noted Atlanta blues, stride, and boogie-woogie pianist;
  • Sunday, April 9: Charles Asche with Dan Rieppel, David Viscoli, and Joseph Zins - Solo and four-piano performances of classical music

For more information, visit the Music website, or for ticket information contact music faculty member Dale Haefner at 507-389-5549.

Individuals with a disability who need reasonable accommodation to participate in this event should contact the Office of Disability Services at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

Jan. 26: Good Thunder faculty readings

Four Minnesota State Mankato faculty creative writers will read from their published work during a Good Thunder Reading Series performance on Thursday, Jan. 26.

Candace Black, Richard Terrill, Suzanne Bunkers and Terry Davis will read at 7:30 p.m. in Ostrander Auditorium of Centennial Student Union. The event is free and open to the public. An interview with the writers, part of the "Authors in Transit" series on KMSU 89.7 FM, will air on Friday, Jan. 27, at 11 a.m.

This year's Good Thunder Reading Series is funded by the Department of English, the College of Arts & Humanities, the Office of Institutional Diversity, Library Services, the Eddice B. Barber Visiting Writer Endowment, the Robert C. Wright Endowment, the Mankato Area Foundation and individual donors. It is made possible in part by grants from the Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council, the Minnesota State Arts Board, the National Endowment for the Arts, and an appropriation by the Minnesota Legislature. The Barnes & Noble Bookstore at Minnesota State provides additional assistance.

For more information about the series call Richard Robbins at 507-389-1354.

Individuals with a disability who need reasonable accommodation to participate in the event should contact the Office of Disability Services at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

Jan. 26: LGBT employee network reception

A reception for employees who are interested in forming a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender network will be held Thursday, Jan. 26, in Centennial Student Union.

The reception is for Minnesota State Mankato faculty and staff who identify as LGBT and who are interested in meeting other employees who identify as LGBT. The event will be from 4-5:30 p.m. in the Heritage Room. Snacks will be provided.

The event is being planned by a small group of employees as an opportunity for others to sign up for a listserv, meet other LGBT employees, and seek leadership roles in the network. Event sponsors ask that only those who identify as LGBT attend.

Those who cannot attend the reception but are interested in receiving future emails should contact Jessica Flatequal at

Individuals with a disability who need reasonable accommodation to participate in the event should contact the Office of Disability Services at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

Jan. 27: Philip Milano

Author, journalist and nationally renowned diversity educator Philip Milano will answer diversity questions that many people are afraid to ask on Friday, Jan. 27.

In a presentation titled "I Can't Believe You Asked That," Milano will host a "no-holds-barred" discussion about race, sex, religion and other diversity myths. Milano's talk, sponsored by the Minnesota State Mankato Student Events Team, will be at 6:30 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom. Students, faculty, staff and members of the public are invited, and admission is free.

Milano will answer questions that perpetuate cultural misunderstanding, including "Why do gay men talk with a lisp?" "Why do black people get to use the N-word?" "Why do white people smell like wet dogs when they come out of the rain?" He also will address why people are afraid to ask the questions, and how the lack of questioning inhibits the education process.

Those who want more information about the event should call 507-389-6076.

Individuals with a disability who need reasonable accommodation to participate in the event should contact the Office of Disability Services at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

Jan. 30-Feb. 4: Employee Recognition Week

Employee Recognition Week will be celebrated at Minnesota State Mankato Monday, Jan. 30, through Saturday, Feb. 4, with contests, prizes, music and more.

The annual series of events and contests, sponsored by the Employee Recognition Committee in conjunction with Minnesota Employee Recognition Week, starts Jan. 30 with a reception and cookie contest.

The event celebrates the contributions of Minnesota State Mankato employees, and is a means of saying "thank you" for the work everyone does to provide students with an excellent learning experience.

Watch for a schedule of events on the Minnesota State Mankato web page.

Feb. 1-5, 8-12: 'Urinetown'

The Department of Theatre & Dance will open the second half of its Mainstage Season with the atypical musical "Urinetown" Feb. 1-5 and 8-12 in Ted Paul Theatre. The production is sponsored by Jadd Seppmann & Sons of Mankato.

"Urinetown," winner of three Tony Awards in 2002, including Best Original Score for Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, takes place in a crippled Gotham-like industrial city in the middle of a 20-year drought. In a mad attempt to regulate water consumption, the government outlaws the use of private toilets, causing the citizens to rebel against Caldwell B. Cladwell and his Urine Good Company. When heroic Bobby Strong decides he's had enough, he leads a revolution to overthrow Cladwell.

Caught in the middle of all this is Cladwell's daughter, the beautiful and innocent Hope, who is in love with Bobby. Warning: this is not your typical musical comedy–it is much darker and funnier!

The production represents the first musical staged in the five-year-old Andreas Theatre.

Directed by Paul Hustoles, "Urinetown" features first-year transfer student Joey Ford ("Man of La Mancha" and "Galileo") as Bobby Strong and Waconia native and junior BFA Musical Theatre candidate Jacleen Olson as Hope. The live orchestra is directed by Nick Wayne, musical director for "Man of La Mancha" earlier this season.

Tickets are $17.50 regular admission and $16 for senior citizens, youth and groups of 15 or more, and go on sale Tuesday, Jan. 24. Several of the performances are sold out due to season ticket sales. The Box Office can be reached at 507-389-6661 between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday-Friday. For more information, visit the MSU Theatre website.

Individuals with a disability who need reasonable accommodation to participate in the event should contact the Office of Disability Services at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

Feb. 7: Celebrate Marriage Equality Day

A day of events featuring information about Marriage Equality Day and real families will be sponsored by the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Center on Tuesday, Feb. 7.

The day's schedule includes:

  • 1-2:30 p.m., Ostrander Auditorium: Marriage Equality 101: A diverse panel of LGBT voices and activists will discuss why all couples deserve the right to marry.
  • 4-6 p.m., CSU 284: Community Action Training: An interactive training session to build a community-wide response to the anti-marriage amendment and expand the LGBT-ally base. The session will teach community organizing skills. Pre-registration is required; register online at the Together Minnesota website.

For more information contact Jessica Flatequal in the LGBT Center at or 507-389-6076.

Individuals with a disability who need reasonable accommodation to participate in the event should contact the Office of Disability Services at 507-389-2825 (V/TTD), 800-627-3529 or 711 (MRS/TTD) at least five days prior to the event.

Faculty/staff awards and achievements

Stewart Ross (Center of Excellence in Teaching & Learning) presented a four-hour workshop, "Creating Significant Learning Experiences in Higher Education," for the Kent State University faculty earlier this month.

Susan Schalge (Anthropology) received a spring 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for her project, "Analyzing the Impact of Aid in Africa."

Ron Schirmer (Anthropology) is co-organizing a volume on Red Wing archeology. As part of this work he co-organized a Nov. 19 conference. Seventeen authors presented at the Anderson Center in Red Wing and engaged in a dialogue on different types of archeological data.

Atrayee Ghosh Roy (Economics) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for her project, "U.S Budget Deficits and the U.S. Economy: An Empirical Analysis."

Phillip Miller (Economics) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for his project, "Public Subsidies and Ticket Prices in Sports."

Kwang Woo Park (Economics) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for his project, "The Industrial Relationships in Time- Varying Beta Coefficients between Korea and U.S."

Hanh Huy Phan (Ethnic Studies) was selected for the 10th Edition of Who's Who Among America's Teachers.

Luis Posas (Ethnic Studies) presented "Human Rights in Higher Education" at the Human Rights Day celebration in St. Paul in December.

Forrest Wilkerson and Cynthia Miller (Geography) wrote an article, "Hurricane 'Katrina' and the Impact on New Orleans, A Reflection of Ailing Social, Economic, and Physical Infrastructure," that was published in Geographische Rundschau International Edition.

Fei Yuan (Geography) received a Faculty Research Grant for her project, "Land Use and Land Cover Change and Environmental Impact Analysis for Greater Mankato Area." She also co-authored an article, "Land cover mapping and change analysis in the Twin Cities Metropolitan Area with Landsat remote sensing," published in Remote Sensing of Environment.

Lori Ann Lahlum (History) wrote an article, "'Everything was changed and looked strange': Norwegian Women in South Dakota," for South Dakota History.

James Bailey (Political Science/Law Enforcement) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for his project, "Applied Forensic Science Research."

Tom Inglot (Political Science/Law Enforcement) presented "US Relations with Europe and Latin America," at the Midwest Global Educators Conference in Minneapolis.

Eiji Kawabata (Political Science/Law Enforcement) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for his project, "Contemporary Government Reform in Japan : The Dual State in Flux Abstract."

Andi Lassiter (Psychology) co-authored a chapter in an edited book: Teaching and Learning with Virtual Teams.

Nancy Fitzsimons (Social Work) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for her project, "Efficacy of the Shadow Victims: Crimes Against People with Disabilities Curriculum for Law Enforcement Officers."

Marilyn Frank (Social Work) presented a paper, "Reality Social Work: Working in task groups to create change," at the International Symposium on Social Work with Groups in Minneapolis.

Paul Mackie (Social Work) received a 2006 SBS Research Grant and reassignment for his project, "A pilot study of factors influencing students' intentions to choose rural and urban social work practice."

Susan Freeman (Women's Studies) received a spring 2006 SBS Teaching Innovation reassignment for her project, "Developing a Study Abroad Experience in Women's Studies."

Maria Bevacqua and Susan Freeman (Women's Studies) co-presented a networking session, "LGBT and Diversity Work on a University Campus," at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force's Creating Change conference in Oakland, Calif., in November.

Beta Gamma Sigma inducts 20

Beta Gamma Sigma, international business honor society, recently inducted 17 seniors and three juniors.

Induction into the honor society is the highest recognition a business student can receive in an undergraduate or master's program at an AACSB International-accredited school. Seniors must be in the top 10 percent of the graduating class, and juniors must be in the top 7 percent of their class.

Seniors inductees include Mica Anderson, Shane Butler, Heather Dahms, Jon Hart, Jonathon Hart, Jeffrey Holmberg, Carolyn Houde, Miranda Jaodzinske, Crystal Jordan, Nicole Maras, Tanya Munsterman, Tiffany Nelson, Jason Norenberg, Marilyn Riniker, Dustin Swenson, Kelsey True and Rebecca Wahl.

Junior inductees are Irina Kansakar, Amanda Malecek and Jena Niesen.

Student awards and achievements

The Anthropology Club recently organized a Brown Bag Lunch Series with presentations by faculty, students and external speakers. Paul Brown presented "Difficulties in Evolutionary interpretations of the Fossil Record"; Ronald Schirmer presented "Paleoethnobotany and other Archaeology Specializations"; Bronco Lebeau presented "The WInkte: Traditional Lakota Roles and Modern Understanding"; and Bruce Koenen, assistant to the state archaeologist, led a discussion "Archaeology outside of Academia."

Cheryl Kaberle (Social Work) was selected to receive undergraduate research funding for her project, "Analysis of the Nicollet County Law Enforcement, Court Services and Community Corrections Revenue and Expenditures: A Five Year Review."

Bethany Rein, Tracy Grundman and Bethany Berry (Political Science/Law Enforcement) attended the Minnesota Political Science Conference at St. Cloud in November. Rein and Grundman presented their paper, "The Rise of the New Right and New Left: Recent Trends in European Party Politics"–research was for Tom Inglot's European Politics class.