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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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May 11, 2011 Campus Newsletter

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MSU graduates

1,890 receive degrees

Approximately 1,890 graduated during spring commencement May 7 in Taylor Center. In addition to those receiving degrees Saturday, another 250 expected summer graduates took part in the ceremonies.

Graduate-level participants received three doctorate of nursing practice degrees, 99 master of arts degrees, eight master of fine arts degrees, five master of arts in teaching degrees, 12 master of business administration degrees, 15 master of public administration degrees, 12 master of science in nursing degrees, 149 master of science degrees and 18 specialist degrees.

Undergraduate participants received 172 bachelor of arts degrees, 46 bachelor of fine arts degrees, 10 bachelor of athletic training degrees, 1,620 bachelor of science degrees, 14 bachelor of science in civil engineering degrees, five bachelor of science in computer engineering degrees, 16 bachelor of science in electrical engineering degrees, 20 bachelor of science in mechanical engineering degrees, 27 bachelor of science in social work degrees and 40 associate of arts degrees.

One hundred thirty-six undergraduate students graduated summa cum laude, 322 graduated magna cum laude and 264 graduated cum laude.

The 2011 spring total of approximately 1,890 is 12 percent higher than the 1,682 who were graduated in spring 2010. Total graduates for the 2010-’11 academic year are 3,348 (including 1,458 who were graduated in December 2010).


MSU Concrete canoe team

Concrete canoe team: First

Minnesota State Mankato's concrete canoe team took first place in the regional competition and will advance to the national concrete canoe contest in June.

The team is sponsored by the student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers and is advised by Jim Wilde and Farhad Reza.

Last week's competition was hosted by North Dakota State University, with parts of the competition in Fargo and Detroit Lakes. Eight schools from the region participated.

Each team's work was judged on three categories: design paper, oral presentation and final product. (A fourth category, race results, was eliminated because safety concerns over inclement weather caused officials to cancel on-water races.)

Minnesota State Mankato placed first in both oral presentation and final product, and placed second in design paper. The Maverick concrete canoe team earned 72.5 points out of a possible 75 -- 10 points ahead of the runner-up competitor.

The team will represent the region at the National Concrete Canoe Competition in Evansville, Ind., June 16-18 at the University of Evansville.

More 'Odyssey' awards

Performance - The Odyssey

The cast and crew of the national award-winning performance “The Odyssey” has won eight more commendations for distinguished achievement from the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival.

“Odyssey” director Paul J. Hustoles (Theatre & Dance) learned recently that the festival’s national selection team awarded special commendations to:

  • Music composer Michael Croswell, for Distinguished Achievement in Music & Composition;
  • Paul, for Distinguished Achievement in Direction;
  • Matthew A. Gilbertson, for Distinguished Achievement in Stage Management;
  • 28 cast members, for Distinguished Achievement in Ensemble Performance: Deanne McDonald, Tim Gagne, David Wasylik, Joe Crook, Andy Gullikson, J. Alexander Coe, Megan Volkman-Wilson, Laura D. Thaisen, Adam Karal Sahli, Laura Otremba, Adam Moen, Emily Jansen, Anthony DePoto, Jessica Dougherty, Clayton Oliver Rutschow, Rodney Fair, Emma Ottoson, Meredith Larson, Morgan Mallory, Jason Garton, Joey West, Dustin Guy Jackson, Austin England, Jameson Pieper, Sarah Polis-Mares, Natalie Schleusner, Rudolph Searles III and Sam Stoll;
  • Kimberly Michele Steffen, for Distinguished Achievement in Performance as “Athena”;
  • Scenic designer Tom Bliese (Theatre emeriti), for Distinguished Achievement in Set Design;
  • David McCarl (Theatre & Dance), for Distinguished Achievement in Costume Design;
  • Steven Smith (Theatre & Dance), for Distinguished Achievement in Lighting Design.


Student leaders prepare for a 95-mile walk

Eight student leaders prepare to embark on a 95-mile walk from Mankato to St. Paul.

Capitol walk

Student leaders are again walking 95 miles from Mankato to St. Paul in three days to draw attention to the importance of higher education funding.

Former Minnesota State Student Association President Tom Williams and former vice president Brett Anderson are repeating the three-day walk they made last year, accompanied by new President Matt Lexcen and new VP Moriah Miles. The four – plus several other students - left Centennial Student Union on Monday and will arrive at the State Capitol at noon Thursday, May 12.

When they get to the Capitol steps they’ll meet with key legislators, pointing out that decreased state funding for higher education increases the financial pressure on college students. They intend to emphasize to legislators, the governor and taxpayers that public higher education is increasingly funded by students and other private sources.

Lauren SteltenLauren SteltenJefferson MasonRylan Galiardi

Lauren Stelten, Kathleen Ritter, Jefferson Mason and Rylan Galiardi.

Top athletes

Four Maverick athletes received top female and male honors at the 25th annual Maverick Achievement Awards and Senior Honors Dinner recently.

Lauren Stelten received the Female Athletics Medal of Honor; Kathleen Ritter received the Georgene Brock Award; Jefferson Mason received the Male Athletics Medal of Honor; and Rylan Galiardi received the Don Buchanan Award.

The Female Athletics Medal of Honor is presented annually to one senior student-athlete and is based solely on athletic achievements. The award has been presented since 1994-95.

Lauren won the 2011 NCAA Division II Indoor pole vault championship last winter -- the university's third female pole vault national champion. She is a four-time All-American, and twice won the NSIC indoor pole vault championship. She won the 2010 NSIC outdoor track and field pole vault title.

The Georgene Brock Award (Outstanding Female Senior Student-Athlete Award) goes to the student-athlete who best combines academic and athletic achievements.

Kathleen has a 4.0 grade-point average, majoring in accounting and finance. A four-year letter winner in women’s golf, she won the 2011 Myles Brand All-Academic with Distinction Award and was a 2010 NCGA All-Academic Scholar.

The Male Athletics Medal of Honor is presented annually to one senior student-athlete and is based solely on athletic achievements.

Jefferson was named to three All-America teams this year, was elected Most Outstanding Player in NCAA Central Region Men’s Basketball Tournament, and was named to the NCAA Elite Eight All-Tournament Team. He led the Mavericks in scoring with 19.2 points per game.

The Don Buchanan Award (Outstanding Male Student-Athlete Award) is presented annually to the student-athlete who best combines academic and athletic achievements.

Rylan has a cumulative grade point average of 3.81, majoring in sport management. He was captain of the hockey team this year, and his 81 career points ties for 17th overall. A three-time WCHA All-Academic honoree and a two-time WCHA Scholar-Athlete Award recipient, he was this year’s Men’s Hockey Don Brose Leadership Award recipient.

Anne Blackhurst: Moorhead bound

Anne BlackhurstAnne E. Blackhurst, acting vice president for academic and student affairs, has been appointed provost and senior vice president for academic affairs at Minnesota State University Moorhead. Anne will start her new duties on Aug. 1.

Before she was appointed acting vice president in July 2010, Anne served for four years as dean of graduate studies and research. Before that she served for 12 years as a graduate Counseling & Student Personnel faculty member and department chair.

She came to Minnesota State Mankato in 1994 as assistant professor of Counseling & Student Personnel. She was promoted to associate professor in 1998 and to full professor in 2004.

Scott Olson, interim vice chancellor for academic and student affairs at the Office of the Chancellor, will return to Minnesota State Mankato Aug. 1 to resume his duties as provost and vice president for academic and student affairs.

Top piano awards

Youna ChoiTwo students captured top awards in the state’s most prestigious competition for young pianists.

Youna Choi and Amy Chin, graduate students in piano, won the top two awards in the Minnesota Music Teachers Association Young Artist Piano Competition in March.

Youna won the competition and Amy was second. Each performed a 30-minute program with works by four different composers.

Youna will perform at the honors concert in the Minneapolis Convention Center Saturday, May 21, and Amy will perform in the Young Artist Recital at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Plymouth, Minn., on June 7.

Both are students of David Viscoli (Music).



Youna Choi

Summer Theatre subscriptions

Highland Summer Theatre season adSubscriptions for the 45th annual Highland Summer Theatre season are on sale.

The season will include two plays in Andreas Theatre, two musicals in Ted Paul Theatre, the return of alumni in acting and design roles, and a healthy sprinkling of current and graduating students. The first show opens in late May and the final show closes before the end of July.

The season opens Tuesday, May 24, with “Almost, Maine” by John Cariani in Andreas Theatre. Through a series of vignettes, residents of Almost, Maine, explore the fun, foibles and pain of love. Performances are 7:30 p.m. May 24-28.

“Clue: The Musical” is the summer's first musical, running June 8-11 with shows at 7:30 p.m. in Ted Paul Theatre. The internationally popular game comes to life — and death — as the audience is called upon to help discover who killed Mr. Boddy.

“The Owl and the Pussycat,” the story that became a popular movie starring George Segal and Barbra Streisand, will be June 21-25 in Ted Paul Theatre. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. An aspiring author reports his neighbor to the landlord, thinking she’s a prostitute. But she’s an actress and model, and she forces him to take her in because she's been evicted.

“Annie” will be the summer closer, with performances July 7-9 and 13-16 at 7:30 p.m. in Ted Paul Theatre. A spunky Depression-era orphan determined to find her parents foils the orphanage overseer's evil machinations, befriends President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and finds a new family in billionaire Oliver Warbucks and a mutt named Sandy.

Season subscriptions are $60 (plus $5 processing per order), available via mail or online. Order forms may be downloaded at Individual tickets for all shows go on sale Monday, May 16.


Student Health Services logo

Student Health: Accredited

Student Health Services has been accredited by the Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care, meaning that it meets nationally recognized standards for the provision of quality outpatient health care.

Some 5,000 ambulatory health care organizations across the United States are accredited by the association, though not all that apply are granted accreditation. Ambulatory and office-based surgery centers, single and multi-specialty group practices, college health centers, dental group practices, community health centers, occupational health centers and managed care organizations are among the organizations that seek association accreditation.

Ambulatory health care organizations seeking accreditation by the association undergo an extensive self-assessment and on-site survey by volunteer physicians, nurses and administrators who are actively involved in ambulatory health care.

This is the third three-year full accreditation award for Student Health Services. Student Health has 24 health-care professionals on staff, including medical doctors, nurse practitioners, nurses, lab technicians, pharmacist, pharmacy technicians, medical records/insurance staff, and health educators.

Those who want more information may go to or call (507)389-6276.

Steam heat shutdown

The steam heat system -- currently shut down to repair it for next year -- will be operable by noon Monday, May 16. Those working in buildings may experience higher humidity and cooler temperatures because steam is not available to re-heat cooled air. Most buildings have hot water except for Taylor Center, Trafton Science Center and Ford Hall.

The annual shutdown affects all residence halls, Andreas Theatre, Armstrong Hall, Centennial Student Union, Ford Hall, Highland Center, Highland North, Memorial Library, Morris Hall, Myers Field House, Nelson Hall, Pennington Hall, Performing Arts Center, Taylor Center, Trafton Science Center, Wigley Administration, Wiecking Center, Wiecking Shop and Wissink Hall.

There is no heat for pool water in Highland Center pool, but showers will have hot water. The steam cooking system in kitchens in Carkoski, Gage, Centennial Student Union and Children’s House is down. There's no hot water and no heat in the Ford Hall greenhouse. An electric backup boiler is providing heat for the animal labs, and there is no steam for the autoclaves. There is no hot water in Taylor Center and Crawford, and no heat for dryers in Highland Center Laundry.

'Common read'

The book 'This I Believe'Members of the campus and Mankato communities are invited to join in the Learning Communities Program's "common read" for 2011–2012. The book is "This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women," edited by Jay Allison and Dan Gediman.

 All faculty, staff, students and community residents are encouraged to pick up a copy of the book and then attend various events that planned for the fall semester. Events will be posted on the Campus Events Calendar as they are scheduled.

Those who want more information may contact Kate Hansen (First Year Experience), (507) 389-5498.

May 12, 13: Supervisor workshop

A two-day workshop to help first-time supervisors will be held Thursday and Friday, May 12 and 13. The workshop, open to any new supervisor, will be presented by Dan Sachau, Andi Lassiter (Industrial/Organizational Psychology) and Scott Fee (Construction Management).

The three will explain how new supervisors can better manage time and projects, communicate with and motivate employees, and evaluate employee performance.

Dan leads a group that provides management consulting services to local, national and international organizations. Scott is an expert in project management, green building and international service learning. Andi is an expert in leadership and employee development.

Their presentations will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day in Centennial Student Union Room 238. Participants may earn 12 contact hours of continuing education credits for the workshop. Cost is $799 and includes all materials, refreshments and lunch each day. Those who want more information or who wish to register may go to

The workshop is a presentation of the College of University Extended Education.

May 12-13, 19-20: Dispute resolution

Helen Preddy will present a dispute resolution workshop May 12, 13, 19 and 20 in Edina.

The workshop is a presentation of the College of University Extended Education and meets the Minnesota Supreme Court's 30-hour civil mediation requirements for those interested in joining the Minnesota Qualified Neutral Roster.

Those who want more information may go to


Marian Anderson with 'Journey'

Marian Anderson with "Journey".

May 14, 15: 'Journey'

Nationally acclaimed artist and Mankato area native Marian Anderson will mark 55 years of art with a painting tracing the advancement of Minnesota State Mankato from a frontier school to a doctoral university.

“Journey,” Anderson’s first new painting in four years, was commissioned by Minnesota State Mankato and will highlight the May 14-15 opening of the Marian Anderson Art Gallery in the Meyer Financial & Consulting Building, 1560 Adams St., Mankato.

The 40”x26” painting features continues a series of Anderson paintings that include three collages highlighting Mankato’s heritage and growth.

The University will offer 750 signed, numbered limited-edition prints of the painting for sale. In addition to the 18”x12” prints, the public may purchase 75 18”x12” inspected and numbered artist prints and 25 40”x26” giclee prints. Proceeds will benefit the university’s student scholarship fund.

Anderson will be at the May 14-15 gallery opening, from 1-5 p.m. "Journey" will be on display at the gallery until September, when it will be moved to a permanent location in Centennial Student Union. The painting will hang in the Ballroom lobby after renovation is complete in late September.

A native of Nicollet, Anderson is a lifelong resident of the Mankato area. Those who want more information may go to the Alumni Relations website at


May 20, 31: Scholarships

The President’s Office is offering scholarships for two professional development opportunities.

The first scholarship is for a woman on the faculty or staff to attend the Midwest Women’s Leadership Institute, a residential experience at Minnesota State Mankato, June 19-24. The institute benefits women beginning a career path in higher education or those seeking new opportunities with increased responsibility.

Last year’s participants rated the institute very high. Comments and more information are at Those who wish to apply should submit a resume and brief statement (one page) of professional goals to Carol Stallkamp (President's Office) at Applications must be received no later than Friday, May 20.

The second opportunity is a scholarship for the Greater Mankato Leadership Institute, a nine-month program with meetings approximately once each month. Details are available at

Those who wish to apply should submit an application and letters of support to Carol no later than Tuesday, May 31.

Those who have questions should contact Carol at or (507) 389-1112.

June: Family mediation

Two family mediation workshops will be offered by Continuing Education and presented by Helen Preddy in June.

The first is a 40-hour course June 8, 9, 10, 13 and 14. The second is a 30-hour bridge course June 9, 10, 13 and 14. Both workshops will be in Edina, and training meets all Rule 114 requirements for qualified neutrals under the Minnesota Supreme Court Office of Education and Organizational Development and Minnesota Continuing Legal Education.

Those who want more information may visit

Becky Copper-Glenz: New dean

Becky Copper-Glenz has been appointed the next dean of the College of University Extended Education, effective July 1.

Becky joined Minnesota State Mankato in August 2009 as director of distributed learning. Previously she has served as director of admissions for Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota Schools of Graduate and Professional Programs. Before that she was faculty associate, director and coordinator in distance learning programs at Capella, Walden University and the College of St. Scholastica.

She will receive a Doctor of Education in Leadership from Saint Mary’s University in May.


Wendy Schuh: Student health

Wendy Schuh has been named director of Student Health Services.

Wendy served as interim director since 2010. Before that she was associate director, and she came to Minnesota State Mankato as alcohol and drug education coordinator in 2001.


Staff, faculty and students planting flowers

Dozens of staff, faculty and students took part in the annual flower-planting and clean-up day May 4, sprucing up campus for commencement and summer.


Faculty/Staff Achievements

Aaron Budge (Mechanical & Civil Engineering) co-authored a paper, “Performance Data Collected from Instrumentation on a Mn/DOT Bridge Abutment Foundation Subject to Downdrag” published recently in Geotechnical Special Publication No. 211 – Advances in Geotechnical Engineering. Aaron also presented two papers at the 59th annual University of Minnesota Geotechnical Engineering Conference this spring.

Susan Carlin (Water Resources Center) spoke at the Third Annual Mississippi River Forum at the Science Museum of Minnesota in April.

Craig Evers (Auto & Manufacturing Engineering Technology) received a $5,000 Faculty Research Grant for his project to develop and build a braking performance dynamometer.

Shannon Fisher (Water Resources Center), in collaboration with Namyong Lee (Mathematics & Statistics), Bruce Jones (Auto & Manufacturing Engineering Technology) and Shekhar Patil (Construction Management) has been selected to receive $35,000 in strategic priority funding to work on “Assessment and Development of Applied Professional Masters Degree Programs” on campus next academic year. Shannon’s manuscript, “Crustaceous Zooplankton Transfer Between a Floodplain Wetland and the Missouri River,” was accepted for publication in the Prairie Naturalist in June.

In-Jae Kim (Mathematics & Statistics) presented a talk, "Path cover number and maximum corank of a tree," at the Mathematical Association of America-North Central Section meeting in April at Carleton College, Northfield.

John Krenz (Biological Sciences) co-authored “Diet analysis of Homonota darwini (Squamata: Gekkonidae) in Northern Patagonia,” recently published in Current Zoology.

Scott Kudelka and Kim Musser (Water Resources Center) presented the "Minnesota River Progress Report" at the Coalition for a Clean Minnesota River annual banquet in April.

Mezbahur Rahman (Mathematics & Statistics) presented a paper, “Box-Cox Transformation in Microarray Data,” co-authored with Namyong Lee (Mathematics & Statistics), in April at a conference at the University of California-Riverside.

Stewart Ross (Center for Excellence in Teaching & Learning) presented two days of workshops on course design for faculty at Zane State University in Ohio in April.

Patrick Tebbe and Sungwon Kim (Mechanical & Civil Engineering) received a $71,400 grant from the Minnesota Office of Energy Security, "Training to Promote Certification and Competiveness in the Building Energy Field." They also received a $21,310 grant from the Minnesota Office of Energy Security for "Piloting an Energy Specialist Training Program for Southern Minnesota."

Yea-Ling Tsao (Mathematics & Statistics) co-authored study on the computational estimation performance and computational estimation attitude of elementary school fifth graders in Taiwan, published in The Journal of U.S.-China Education Review.

Jennifer Veltsos (English) presented a poster at the national Association of Teachers of Technical Writing conference in Atlanta in April.

Han Wu’s (Mathematics & Statistics) paper “Asymptotic Properties of Maximum Likelihood Estimators for Spatial Nonhomogeneous Poisson Process Models'' was published in the International Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics.

Hongxia Yin (Mathematics & Statistics) co-authored paper “Finding a stable solution of a system of nonlinear equations arising from dynamic systems,” published in the Journal of Industrial and Management Optimization in May. He also co-authored “Active set algorithm for mathematical programs with linear complementarily constraints,” published in Applied Mathematics and Computation.


Gordon Graham receiving the 2011 Fred Zamberletti Award

Gordon L. “Gordy” Graham (center), athletic training professor emeritus, chats with officials of the Minnesota National Football Foundation last month when he received the 2011 Fred Zamberletti Award in Minneapolis. Gordy developed one of the first three athletic training education curricula in the country at Minnesota State Mankato.


ITS awards

Information Technology Services received six 2011 certificates of recognition for technology projects at the Minnesota State IT conference in April.

ITS won awards for:

  • Collaborative Student Study Clusters (Academic Computer Center team);
  • Skype Phone Home (Academic Computer Center team);
  • Nursing Simulation Lab (cross-departmental team);
  • MavAPPS (Bryan Hoffman);
  • Change Management System (Kevin Thompson);
  • MyMNSU tool bar (Jeff Hundstad).

The IT staff also made several presentations:

  • "The ACC in the Cloud," by Bryan and Wayne Sharp;
  • "Free or Cheap Software Tools to Engage Students," by Marni Dunning, Jeff Henline and Matt Clay;
  • "Risk Assessment in 45 Minutes," by John Hoffoss and Kevin;
  • "Making Time for Professional Development," by Shannon Jeffries and Brad Grabham;
  • "Almost No-Touch Operating System Deployment with Configuration Manager" and "Fundamentals of Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager," by Kevin, Joe Lehman and Jerry Jeffries.
  • "Beyond web-safe fonts with CSS3," by Alexey Lazar.

Student Achievements

Shelby Sackett won a Minnesota Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Scholarship for $500.

Holly Sandhurst was awarded the $1,000 Sue Kumsha Bodine Scholarship and the Minnesota Dietetics Association Foundation Scholarship of $750, both from the Minnesota Dietetics Association. She was the only winner of the scholarships in the state. She also won a Minnesota Association of Family and Consumer Sciences Scholarship for $1,000 and has been selected to receive the Members/Centennial Scholarship of $750 from the Educational Foundation of Phi Upsilon Omicron, the national honor society in Family & Consumer Sciences.

Lina Wang, intern of the Water Resources Center, has been selected for a large Undergraduate Research Conference grant to complete “Effects of Bisphenol-A on the Feminization of Danio rerio.” She also received a $500 Babe and Chuck Pennington Botany Scholarship.

Athletic achievement awards

Intercollegiate Athletics honored 41 student-athletes at the 25th annual Maverick Achievement Awards and Senior Honors dinner May 1.

Since 1986 the Maverick Achievement Awards program, which is sponsored by Federated Insurance, has sought to recognize true student-athletes at Minnesota State. Requirements for the award stipulate that recipients be seniors, letter winners and have a grade point average of 3.00 or better entering their senior year of competition. A total of 823 student-athletes have been honored as Maverick Achievement Award recipients since the program’s inception.

This year’s Maverick Achievement Award Recipients include:

Jessie AudasAnn KincaidLaura Leber and Emily Petrovich (soccer); Kyle BaheLeah GrozdanichKathleen Ritter and Julie Snyders (golf); Omaar BaltonMatt McQuiston and
Michael Robinson (football); Ben Becker (wrestling); Amanda BeekmanKimber Kuhl and
Amanda Thompson (volleyball); Claire BergmanJanel Duffy, Jacob Longacre, Brian Parks, Jillene Preusser, Heather Schulz and BrieAnna Simon (swimming-diving); Channing BoeRylan Galiardi, Andrew Sackrison, Nina Tikkinen, Amy Udvig and Ben Youds (hockey); Chelsea Chapman (swimming); Joe Drapcho (basketball); Adam EndresDaniel Kromer, Sam Lance and Jennifer Lang (track-field and cross country); Steve Helget, Danny Miller, Luke Putz and Trent Vedders (baseball); Sarah Madigan (tennis); Julie O’Neal (softball); and Lauren Stelten (track-field).

National oratory

Suzanne Lumberg (Communication Studies) placed third in the 139th Interstate Oratorical Association tournament at James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Va., in April. The tournament is the oldest university level forensic competition in the nation, and the top two persuasive speeches in each state qualify to compete.

She was one of 60 competitors. She attended all three national oratory tournaments, and advanced in all but one of seven individual events to a national elimination round. This fall she will begin work on a master's in Communication Studies at Illinois State University.


Do you have faculty, staff, student or departmental news for the campus newsletter? Send news items to newsletter editor Michael Cooper. The newsletter usually is published every other Wednesday during the academic year and monthly during the summer. The next newsletter will be published June 8; the deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (June 3).

You should also submit your event to the university's official Campus Events Calendar. Go to the events calendar website, click on the self-service "Submit Event" link, and provide the information requested.