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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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April 3, 2013 Campus Newsletter

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Distinguished Alumni Awards

Eleven Minnesota State University, Mankato graduates have been named 2013 Distinguished Alumni Award winners for exceptional achievement and contributions to their professions and communities.

The awards will be presented by the Minnesota State Mankato Alumni Association on Friday, April 26, at 6 p.m. at the Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

The event will honor Keith Appel, Anchorage, Alaska; Chad Brownlee, Langley, British Columbia; Daniel Houlihan, Elysian, Minn.; Robert Lykke, Omaha, Neb.; Jeffrey Olson, St. Peter, Minn.; Stacy Pearson, Savage, Minn.; Kathryn Roberts, Stillwater, Minn.; Alissa Warnemunde Schmidt, Owatonna, Minn.; James Sneer, Eden Prairie, Minn.; Barbara Stoflet, Minnetonka, Minn.; Lee Yao (posthumous), formerly of Jefferson, La.

Those who want more information about the April 26 awards event may click here or call (507) 389-3235.

Undergraduate Research

Two undergraduate research events are coming up on campus. The first is on Monday, April 8, when Minnesota State Mankato will be hosting the second annual Minnesota Conference of Undergraduate Scholarly and Creative Activity. Students from seven Minnesota State Colleges and Universities and five community colleges will be presenting their research, creative and scholarly projects through poster presentations, oral papers, visual art, displays, and performance art. All students and faculty are welcome to attend. Students who attend presentation sessions can register for a chance to win an iPad Mini!

  • Minnesota Conference of Undergraduate Scholarly and Creative Activity
  • Monday, April 8 from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union (Check in at the CSU Ballroom Lobby)
  • Dr. Marilyn Hart and Supriya Sarkar
  • Email:; Phone: (507) 389-1706; Website

The second upcoming undergraduate research event is on Tuesday, April 16, when Minnesota State Mankato will be hosting its 15th annual Undergraduate Research Symposium. Minnesota State Mankato students will be presenting their research, creative and scholarly projects through poster presentations, oral papers, visual art, displays, and performance art. All students and faculty are welcome to attend!

  • Minnesota State Mankato Undergraduate Research Symposium
  • Tuesday, April 16 from 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union (Check in at the CSU Ballroom Lobby)
  • Dr. Alexandra Panahon, Dr. Marilyn Hart, & Natasha Olson
  • Email:; Phone: (507) 389-1706; Website

The Reporter Is Being Digitized

The University Archives has digitized 40 years of student news reporting, from 1926 to 1965. Full-text searchable copies of the Minnesota State Mankato Reporter and its predecessor newspapers are available online in the Memorial Library Digital Collections.

By the end of the semester, another decade of The Reporter will be digitized and available online (up to 1975). This project included the following titles from the Mankato State Teachers College and Mankato State College eras: Among Ourselves (1926-1927), SchoolSpirit (1929-1933), College Spirit (1933-1935), College Reporter (1935-1968), and The Reporter (1968-1975). When completed, 49 years of newspaper will have been digitized (approximately 17,345 pages.) The Reporter has been added to the Student Publications digital collection that also includes The Student and The Mankatonian, monthly student magazines published from 1888-1913.

Funding for this project was made available by a Digital Conversion and Access Grant from the Minnesota Historical and Cultural Heritage Grants Program, which is funded through the Minnesota Historical Society by the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment. Please contact the University Archives if you have any questions. 507-389-1029 or

Voting for Online College Professor Honors

Best Colleges Online desires to recognize forward-thinking professors teaching online courses who are using new technologies to enhance the learning experience for distance students at Minnesota State Mankato.

Nominations for online instructors at Minnesota State Mankato can be submitted from March 25 through April 7 at The top 10 professors who receive the highest number of nominations will advance to the voting round, in which the professor who receives the highest number of votes will be named the 2013 Online College Professor of the Year and be awarded a check for $1,000 USD. Full contest details and rules are also available at

Free Dental Screenings

The Minnesota State University, Mankato Department of Dental Hygiene announced that senior dental hygiene students are seeking patients.

They are looking for individuals who have not had a dental cleaning for over three years or who have been told they need a deep cleaning.
Anyone who meets the above requirements will be given FREE screenings that includes checking one's teeth and oral health status.

Anyone who is interested should refer to this offer and contact the Dental Hygiene Department at 507-389-2147 for an appointment, or stop by the clinic, which is located in the lower level of Morris Hall.

2013 Stomper Move Crew

The Department of Residential Life is seeking faculty and staff volunteers to help greet students and parents as they arrive to move in to the residence halls on Thursday, Aug. 22.

Faculty and staff play the important role of greeting students and parents, directing them to the correct buildings to get keys and information, and watching the heaps of belongings that are piled in front of residence halls. (Religious organizations, Greeks, student organizations, and Learning Community staff have a strong tradition of volunteering time and energy to assist in the unloading of vehicles and helping direct traffic.) Together students, faculty and staff form the “Stomper Move Crew” that annually welcomes new students to our campus.

Stomper Move Crew volunteers receive a t-shirt to wear during their shift. Most importantly, volunteers receive the undying gratitude of students, parents, and families on this important and meaningful day.

In you are interested in volunteering, or have any questions, please contact Torin Akey, Associate Director of Residential Life at or 389-1011 by May 30, 2013.

Alternative Spring Break

Eight students from Minnesota State Mankato spent their spring break completing volunteer service projects through five states enroute to San Antonio, Texas, as part of North Dakota State University's Pay It Forward program.

The students traveled to Des Moines, Iowa; Carthage, Mo.; Little Rock, Ark.; and the Texas communities of Sulpher Springs and Waco before concluding with a two-day stay in San Antonio.

The students were among a volunteer troupe of 42 university students that completed tasks such as working at a zoo, cleaning a summer camp, cleaning streets and demolishing an old garage. They were also able to clean and pick up garbage as well as make food for people in need.

The Alternative Spring Break was organized by the Community Engagement Office, part of the Student Activities Office in the Centennial Student Union. They partnered with the Students Today, Leaders Forever student organization at NDSU, which hosts the Pay It Forward Tour each spring break.

Student Caller Award Ceremony

Join President Davenport, colleagues and friends in a celebration at 2:30 p.m. (award ceremony at 3 p.m.) on Wednesday, April 17 in Centennial Student Union 253/54/55 to honor 70 student fundraising assistants. They will be recognized for their dedication to the Annual Fund and Campus Drive.

These dedicated students assisted in raising $2.9 million and counting for the 2012-2013 Minnesota State Mankato Annual Giving Programs.

Please attend and show your support of these amazing student leaders! We hope to have a great faculty and staff turnout for this special event! Punch and refreshments will be served.

Football Camps

Maverick football will be holding two football camps. The 2013 Youth Football Camp for grades 2–5 will be held June 17-19. The 2013 Developmental Camp for grades 6–9 will be held June 24-26.

The 2013 Youth Football Camp brochure can be viewed here. The 2013 Developmental Camp brochure can be viewed here.

Week of the Young Child

The Department of Family Consumer Science, the Child Development & Family Studies Club and "Children's House" are planning a weeklong event in Wiecking Center to celebrate "Week of the Young Child". This event is scheduled for April 15-18.

The theme is centered around the idea that adults need to play, too, and promoting the benefits of child and family "play." There will be two booths with sometimes child-led activities such as "Dancing" or "Face Drawing," each day.

For more information, contact Dan Moen, assistant professor in the Department of Family Consumer Science, at 507-389-2425 or at

April 4: Comedian Eliot Chang

Comedian Eliott Chang (pictured), a frequent guest of TV shows such as “Comedy Central,” E!’s “Chelsea Lately,” and Showtime’s “Minority Report,” will perform a free show at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4 at Minnesota State University, Mankato’s Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

Following Chang’s stand-up act, he will lead an educational discussion on “Asians in the Media.” According to his publicity materials, Chang’s sharp biting opinions combined with his trademark polished wardrobe make Chang’s live performances memorable. Chang’s outrageous comedy warms up the crowd and opens them up to talking about diversity after the show. This allows people of different backgrounds to discuss cultural issues in a comfortable atmosphere.

Chang’s lecture on Asians in the media has been consistently ranked as one of the best diversity events in the country, because he talks directly about the issues and offers solutions. As an entertainer, he knows how to keep the audience captivated.

The event is free and open to students and the public. Free parking is available in all Gold Lots after 6:30 p.m. Parking is also available for a small fee in the pay lot. For additional parking information please visit

April 9: American Indian Night

The American Indian Student Association will host American Indian Night featuring the 1941s and Tall Paul on April 9 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. It is a rich educational event and introduction to contemporary as well as traditional American Indian values through the medium of arts and entertainment.

The 1491s is a sketch comedy group, based in the wooded ghettos of Minnesota and buffalo grass of Oklahoma. They are a gaggle of Indians chock full of cynicism and splashed with a good dose of indigenous satire.

Tall Paul is an enrolled member of the Leech Lake Ojibwe tribe. Influenced early on by BET’s “106th & Park” rap battles, and by his older cousins tape-recorded raps, he began writing rhymes at the age of 14.

The event is free and open to the public. Free food will be provided to those attending. This annual celebration of American Indian multi-tribal organization and community is a rich educational event.

It is an introduction to contemporary as well as traditional American Indian values through the medium of arts and entertainment.

April 9: Economics Lecture

Richard K. Vedder, a distinguished professor of economics at Ohio University, will give a lecture on the value of a college education at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 9 at Minnesota State Mankato’s Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

Vedder’s lecture, titled “The Value of an American College Education: Student Engagement, Retention, and Success,” is free and open to the public and is part of an Annual Economics Lecture Series at Minnesota State Mankato.

Vedder is also director of the Center for College Affordability and Productivity and an adjunct scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He served as a member of former U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spelling’s Commission of the Future of Higher Education, and has written widely on American economic history. He has authored several books and numerous scholarly papers for journals in economics and public policy, as well as shorter pieces for the popular press including the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Christian Science Monitor, The American Enterprise, CATO Journal and Forbes.

Vedder’s lecture is sponsored by the Kappa Chapter of Minnesota of Omicron Delta Epsilon and the International Economics Honor Society, along with the Department of Economics, the Economics Club, and the College Republicans. For more information on this event, please contact Mathew Malvin by phone at 507-351-8916 or by email at

April 11-21: Play 'Legally Blonde'

The Minnesota State University, Mankato Department of Theatre & Dance will conclude its Mainstage season with the movie-to-Broadway musical production, “Legally Blonde,” with performances at 7:30 p.m. April 11-13 & 18-20 and 2 p.m. April 20 & 21 in the Ted Paul Theatre of the Earley Center for Performing Arts. It is sponsored by Community Bank Mankato, Mankato Ford and the stations of Radio Mankato.

Based on the movie of the same name starring Reese Witherspoon in the lead role, “Legally Blonde” follows sorority star Elle Woods, who doesn’t take “no” for an answer. When her boyfriend dumps her for someone “serious,” Elle puts down the credit card, hits the books and sets out to go where no Delta Nu has gone before: Harvard Law School. Along the way, she proves that being true to yourself never goes out of style. It is making its Minnestoa State Mankato debut.

“Legally Blonde” is directed by Department Chair Paul J. Hustoles, with choreography by Paul Finocchiaro. Senior BFA Design/Technology candidate Sam Juhnke is the lighting designer. Starring as Elle Woods is Callie Syverson, junior BFA Musical Theatre candidate, who recently starred as “Wendla” in “Spring Awakening.” Her boyfriend, Warner, is played by her “Spring Awakening” love interest, Jake McInerney, also a junior BFA Musical Theatre candidate, who played “Melchior.” The cast of 39 is populated with many of the top musical theatre students in the department, as well as many others.

Individual tickets for ”Legally Blonde” are $22 regular, $19 for senior citizens, youth 16 and under and groups of 15 or more, $15 for current Minnesota State students. Tickets are available online at, or 4-6 p.m. Monday-Friday from the Theatre & Dance Box Office in the lobby of the Earley Center for Performing Arts. Call 507-389-6661. Please note: Discounted tickets may be purchased through the box office only.

April 12: Lewinski Law Enforcement Lecture

Minnesota State Mankato Faculty Emeritus William Lewinski (pictured), executive director of Force Science Institute, Ltd. in Mankato, will give a free public lecture from 11 a.m. to 11:50 a.m. on Friday, April 12 in Room 101, Armstrong Hall.

Lewinski's lecture is titled "Dissecting Law Enforcement Decision Making: How Science is Revolutionizing the Analysis of Officers' Actions." It will include information about the current decision-making models used in law enforcement training, what research tells us about decision-making models and the implications of changing models on training and future performance. This lecture will present a very brief summary of the research of Force Science, including a discussion of a three-year study on force training in North America and the United Kingdom. The lecture will present the implications of this work on decision training and present a new but well-researched decision making model that has direct relevance for the police world. Implications of this more realistic decision model on training will be discussed.

Lewinski is a former professor of political science and law enforcement at Minnesota State Mankato. For more information on the lecture, call the Force Science Institute at 507-387-1290.

April 14: International Festival

The tastes, sights, sounds, and ideas of people from dozens of nations come together for a second straight year in Minnesota State University, Mankato's Centennial Student Union. It's the 37th annual Mankato Area International Festival, and it will take place Sunday, April 14 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on all three levels of the CSU. Enjoy continuous entertainment from international students and three professional cultural performance groups, a new cafe and dessert bar, and more food and cultural vendors than ever before. The International Festival is one of Minnesota's largest annual intercultural events, drawing an estimated 4,000 people to Minnesota State Mankato.

Faculty Emeritus and world traveler Gladys Olson will be honored as this year's festival grand marshal. Olson was instrumental in the establishment of the Mankato Area International Festival, and will be present for the opening ceremony. A flag parade led for the first time by a Scottish bagpiper will culminate in the CSU Hearth Lounge, where a traditional smudge ceremony and brief comments will start the celebration at 11 a.m. Admission is free, and special free parking will be available adjacent to the CSU. For more information, go to or call the Kearney International Center at 507-389-1281.

April 16: Prince Among Slaves

Library Services and the Kessel Peace Institute will host a free film showing of Prince among Slaves, the true story of Abd al-Rahman Ibrahima Ibn Sori, a West African prince who was sold into slavery in 1788, eventually ending up in Natchez, Miss.

This film is one of the three DVDs included in the Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys, a collection of materials from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the American Library Association (ALA).

The 60-minute film will be shown April 16 at 6 p.m. in Morris Hall 102. The film showing and discussion is open to all students, faculty, staff and community members. For more information contact Jenny Turner at 507-389-2771 or at

April 25-26: Janavaras International Business Conference

The College of Business is hosting an evening dinner and reception on Thursday, April 25 and a half-day conference on Friday, April 26 to honor Basil Janavaras, professor of marketing and international business, who is retiring at the end of June. Both events will be held at the Courtyard by Marriott in Mankato.

On Thursday, April 25, registration begins at 5:30 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m. The keynote speaker will be Sandra Renner, president of Global Resource Associates and chair of the Minnesota Direct Export Council.

On Friday, April 26, registration begins at 7:30 a.m., and will be followed by keynote presentations from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. by Ted Anderson, president and CEO of BondCote Corporation, and Paul Rasmussen, president and CEO of Zepol Corporation. Following the keynote presentations, there will be panels on "International Business/Trade Strategies and Practices" and "International Marketing/Sales Strategies."

Cost for the dinner and conference is $100 per person. A portion of the fee ($40 tax deductible) will go towards the Basil Janavaras International Business Scholarship Fund. To register, visit, or call 507-389-3235. RSVPs are requested by April 17. Conference participants receive a discounted rate of $89.99 at the Courtyard by Marriott in Mankato. Call the reservation line at 507-388-1234 and mention the COB/Basil Event rate.

Interim VP for Advancement

Jeff Iseminger (pictured) been appointed interim vice president for university advancement. Iseminger will assume his duties May 1, 2013, replacing Doug Mayo, who will be leaving to accept the position as President and CEO of the North Dakota State University Development Foundation and Alumni Association. A search committee has been formed to review candidates for the permanent position. The committee co-chairs are Randy Zellmer, president of the MSU Foundation and David Jones, vice president for Student Affairs & Enrollment Management.

As interim vice president, Iseminger will responsible for assisting President Richard Davenport with the oversight and leadership of the Big Ideas comprehensive campaign. Iseminger will also provide direction and management of integrated marketing, web marketing, publications, media relations, KMSU radio, development, alumni relations, advancement information systems, and printing and photocopying services, and serve as liaison with donors and the Minnesota State University, Mankato Foundation, Inc.

In addition, Iseminger has been promoted to Associate Vice President of University Advancement and Integrated Marketing. His new title reflects his expanded role both within Advancement and across the University. Iseminger's new title is effective immediately, and he will retain his title as Associate Vice President when he steps down as Interim Vice President.

Iseminger has served for the past nine years as the assistant vice president for Integrated Marketing at Minnesota State Mankato, playing a key role in designing and executing the university strategy for raising its profile in key markets such as the Twin Cities. He has led the Integrated Marketing team, which has won two Gold Awards from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) in Circle of Excellence international competitions. He and the Integrated Marketing Team work closely with individuals across our campus community to produce customized marketing plans — 158 plans in the past eight years. Prior to Minnesota State Mankato, Jeff spent approximately 35 years working at other post-secondary institutions, along with private and military organizations. He has a master’s degree in journalism and cultural anthropology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Student Achievements

Minnesota State University, Mankato student Ozlem Barin, a junior from Tekirda─č, Turkey, recently was notified that her research paper, “An Analysis of Labor, Infrastructure, and Education Issues Brought by the North Dakota Oil Boom,” was awarded first prize in the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Finance Undergraduate Writing Competition, 2012.

The first prize award includes an internship at the Community Development Finance Department of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis during the summer of 2013. The Federal Reserve will also publish Barin’s paper in July 2013.

Barin, who is majoring in economics, is in her third semester as a transfer student at Minnesota State Mankato. Barin’s research was supported through a Minnesota State University, Mankato Foundation, Inc. Award ($1,000 stipend), and her research was completed under the supervision of Assistant Professor of Economics Ihsuan Li.

A team of graduate students (Jessica Lilliegaard, Rachel Aquilera-Vanderheyden, Kimberly Asuncion, Diana Colangelo, and Sarah Smeltzer) from the Industrial-Organizational Psychology masters program won the Case Study Competition at the 2013 North Central Regional Society for Human Resource Management meeting on March 23.

It was the first time ever competing in this event for Minnesota State Mankato's Industrial-Organizational Psychology program. The Minnesota State Mankato contingent beat out teams from the University of Iowa, University of Illinois and Purdue University (among others).

The team received $2500, registration for the national conference (value of $7,500) and will be recognized at the Society for Human Resource Management National Conference.

Online TODAY Magazine

today magazineVisit the online TODAY magazine at to keep up-to-date with news, alumni and stories about the people who help make this University great.

The mission of TODAY is to entertain, to inform and to connect the reader to the campus. The print TODAY is mailed twice per year to 95,000 alumni and friends.

TODAY welcomes story ideas supporting this mission. Contact Sara Frederick at (507) 389-6981 or to share ideas.

Content is updated regularly, so check back often!


Do you have faculty, staff, student or departmental news for the campus newsletter? Send news items to the Media Relations Office at The newsletter is published every other Wednesday during the academic year (except during scheduled break weeks) and monthly during the summer. The next newsletter will be published April 17; the deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (April 12).

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.