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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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November 19, 2014 Campus Newsletter

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Circle of 6 Safety Poster

 Awareness Poster

The Minnesota State University, Mankato Office of Equal Opportunity & Title IX is launching a series of sexual violence awareness posters this academic year. The six “We Want You Safe” posters address how students and staff can protect themselves and what both Title IX and the University’s 1B.3 Sexual Violence Policy cover.

The University is committed to preventing sexual violence, discrimination and harassment and will respond to all reports of sexual misconduct.

HERS Institute Representative Opportunity

HERSThe Minnesota State Mankato President’s Commission on the Status of Women is accepting applications for a University representative to attend one of the annual Higher Education Resource Services Institutes for women. HERS Institutes advance women leaders in the middle and executive levels of higher education administration.

The application includes a self-descriptive letter, letter of recommendation, resume and printed copy of the HERS application form. More information is available at the PCSW website.

HERS Institutes offer three different locations and schedules for 2015. Applicants for summer sessions can choose between the Bryn Mawr College Institute and the University of Denver Institute. Academic year applicants attend the Wellesley College Institute.

There will be an informational session Wednesday, Jan. 7. Submit applications to Keane Richards or via email to by Friday, Jan. 23.

Campus Computer Store Black Friday Event

Campus Computer Store logoThe Campus Computer Store will host a Black Friday event Nov. 24 – Dec. 1. Specials will be online at the Campus Computer Store website and in-store. For specials online, use the promotional code: blackfriday. Specials include:

  • $20 gift cards for all tablet purchases
  • New iPad Air 2 educational pricing
  • $100 off previous generation iPads Air and mini
  • $149 Dell Venue 7” tablets
  • Fifty percent off Wicked audio sets, which include portable speakers, over-ear headphones, earbud headphones and audio cables
  • Program for used devices to be traded in for store credit

Honors Program Conference

Confluence and ConflictEight University honors students and staff attended the Annual Conference of the National Collegiate Honors Council in Denver from Nov. 5-9. The conference allowed honors students and staff from throughout the U.S., Europe and the Middle East to network, exchange ideas and share their latest research findings.

Minnesota State Mankato Director of Honors Chris Corley and Assistant Director of Honors Ginny Walters organized panels and made presentations about developing intercultural competency in honors programs. Corley’s panel was titled “Beyond a Semester Abroad: Developing Intercultural Competency through Curricular Redesign.” Walters’ panel was titled “Enhancing Intercultural Competency through Courses.”

Lauren Bach, a University psychology student, served on several panels and organized committees as a member of the NCHC Board of Directors. She also gave a presentation titled “Challenged and Inspired to Create Student-Led Orientations.” Incoming Director of Honors Anne Dahlman attended sessions for new honors directors.

The University Honors Program will host the annual conference of the Upper Midwest Regional Honors Council, which includes colleges and universities from North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan, from March 26-28. More information about the conference can be found at the Honors Program website.

Construction Management Students Assist East High School

Mankato East playStudents from the Department of Construction Management assisted in building a set for the fall musical, "In the Heights," that was performed from Nov. 6-8 at Mankato East High School.

The students included Mursil Almahhan, Theeb Alyami, Theeb Al Rizq, Mohammed Altaysan and Dylan Dutton, all of whom were instrumental in the design and construction of the set, along with third-year student Matt Heller, who did autocad drawings.

The project began when Mankato East High School contacted Brian Wasserman, assistant professor and Construction Management department chair, to see if any Minnesota State Mankato students would be available to help building the set. Five students from the Construction Management 111 (Intro) class volunteered.

After receiving a hand sketch from Mankato East High School, Heller completed autocad drawings, and Wasserman and the students went to the high school to review the site and eventually begin construction on the set. High school students painted the set.

Nov. 10-Dec. 5: Senior Art Exhibits

ArtSenior students of the University Department of Art are displaying their works at Conkling Gallery (139 Nelson Hall) in two separate shows. The first show began Nov. 10 and continues until today (Nov. 19). The second show is from Nov. 24 to Dec. 5.

All artwork will be on display from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Minnesota State Mankato Department of Art at 507-389-6412.

Nov. 19: ‘Freedom and Security on the Internet’

Kessel InstituteChristophe Veltsos, associate professor in the University Department of Computer Information Science, will give a talk titled “Freedom and Security on the Internet” and lead a discussion from 7-9 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 19, in the Centennial Student Union Room 245. Discussion topics include cyber security, cyber war and spying and internet neutrality.

Veltsos’ presentation is sponsored by the Kessel Institute for the Study of Peace and Change, which is an organization dedicated to advancing the understanding and existence of peace at all levels.

Contact Jackie Vieceli, director of the Kessel Institute for the Study of Peace and Change, by phone at 507-389-6938 or by email at for more information.

Nov. 19: Celebration of 16th annual ‘GIS’ Day

GIS dayThe University Department of Geography and more than 10 area businesses, schools, cities and counties will celebrate the 16th annual Geographic Information Systems Day from 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 19, in the Memorial Library’s Mary T. Dooley Map Library. The event is free and open to the public.

Vendor and information tables and a student poster gallery will be on display throughout the event. Workshops about GIS data sources and the best resources for GIS data in conservation, water resources and land use will be held.

For more information, visit an informational page on the Department of Geography's website or contact Rama Mohapatra, assistant professor in the Department of Geography, by phone at 507-389-6223 or by email at

Nov. 19-22: ‘Gabriel’ is Next Theatre Studio Production

GabrielThe University Department of Theatre & Dance will present Moira Buffini’s “Gabriel” at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 19-22 in the Andreas Theatre of the Earley Center for Performing Arts.

Set around the German occupation of the Channel Islands during World War II, “Gabriel” is an exploration of one man trying to remember who he is set against the struggle of a woman trying to save her family from a Nazi soldier.

Tickets are $10; $8 for students. Tickets can be purchased online or at the Theatre and Dance Box Office in the lobby of the Earley Center for Performing Arts from 4-6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Call 507-389-6661.

Nov. 20: History Forum Lecture

Jim CoonsMinnesota State Mankato’s fall History Forum lecture will be presented by Jim Coons (pictured), an assistant professor from the Department of History, Thursday, Nov. 20 at 4 p.m. in Centennial Student Union Room 201.

Coons’ presentation is titled “Claiming Absolute Power: Manhood, Nationalism, and the French State under the Sun King.” The lecture is free and open to the public.

The lecture describes how history remembers King Louis XIV the monarch who wielded power over a nation in Europe. Coons’ talk will look at the early days of the king’s 75-year reign, when the nationwide civil war (called the Fronde) tore France apart. Coon will also about how the king rebuilt and expanded royal power by making use of ideas that the rebels themselves had championed.

For more information contact University Associate Professor of History Tao Peng by phone at 507-389-1611 or by email at

Nov. 20: Good Thunder Reading Series

Good ThunderFiction writer Bonnie Jo Campbell will visit the University Thursday, Nov. 20. An informal question and answer session from 10-11 a.m. will be held in Centennial Student Union Room 202. A craft talk will be 3-3:50 p.m. in Centennial Student Union Ostrander Auditorium. A book reading and signing will be from 7:30-8:30 p.m. in Centennial Student Union Room 245. Books will be available for purchase. All events are free and open to the public.

Campbell's collection "Women and Other Animals," which won the Association of Writers and Writing Programs prize for short fiction, details the lives of extraordinary females in rural Michigan. Her short fiction collection "American Salvage" was finalist for the National Book Award and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award. Her national bestselling novel "Once Upon a River" tells the story of a river odyssey with a 16-year-old heroine, which the New York Times Book Review declared, is "an excellent American parable about the consequences of our favorite ideal, freedom."

For more information, contact the Good Thunder Reading Series Director Diana Joseph by phone at 507-389-5144 or by email at

Nov. 20: Comedy Sportz

Comedy SportzThe Mankato community is invited to join Comedy Sportz, a unique sporting event, as the Twin Cities comedy improvisation team comes to Minnesota State Mankato for a free public performance Thursday, Nov. 20.

The show will be at 7:45 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ostrander Auditorium. Parking is available in Lot 4 for a small fee.

Comedy Sportz is a one-hour act of unscripted comedy played as a sport. Two teams of comedians take suggestions from the audience and compete for the most points and biggest laughs. The show is cosponsored by Student Events Team (the University student programming committee) and the University Office of New Students and Family Programs.

For more information, contact Pratakshya Bhandari by phone at 507-389-6076 or by email at

Nov. 22: The Jimmys in Concert

The JimmysThe Jimmys will perform Saturday, Nov. 22, at Hooligans Neighborhood Pub in Mankato. The concert will kick off at 8 p.m. with the Bass Brand Brass Band. The Jimmys will perform at 9:30 p.m.

The concert is cosponsored by KMSU-The Maverick and the Minnesota State Mankato Performance Series with assistance from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

The Jimmys are from the upper Midwest and Canada. The Madison Area Music Awards and Wisconsin Area Music Awards have recognized the Jimmys with 19 awards including Blues Artist of the Year for the second year in a row, Blues Song of the Year, Bassist of the Year, Brass Player of the Year and Keyboardist of the Year.

The all-star rhythm section combines blues icon Perry Weber on guitar, rock ‘n’ roll drumming legend Mauro Magellan and charismatic bass player Johnny Wartenweiler.

Tickets are $13 in advance; $15 the day of the show. Tickets are available online at the Department of Music website, the Performance Series office (507-389-5549) or at Hooligans.

Nov. 23: University Concert Bands Holiday Concert

Symphonic BandThe Symphonic Band and Concert Wind Ensemble will host a holiday concert Sunday, Nov. 23, at 3 p.m. in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts.

The Symphonic Band features Erik Root, a conducting and trumpet pedagogy student, who will conduct Alfred Reed’s "Children’s Suite.” The Symphonic Band also includes Jared Barnes' "Adventum," arrangements of "O Come," "O Come Emmanuel," the "Ukranian Bell Carol" and John Mackey’s "Foundry."

The Concert Wind Ensemble will partner with student singers to perform five of Aaron Copland’s Old American Songs. The folk tunes and hymns include "Simple Gifts," "Zion’s Walls" and "Ching-a-Ring-Chaw." The concert will close with a Spanish flamenco showcasing soprano saxophone soloist, flamenco guitarist and flamenco cajónist.

Tickets are $9 for community members; $7 for students. Tickets can be purchased online at the Department of Music website. For more information, call the Performance Series office at 507-389-5549.

Nov. 24: University Percussion Ensemble

Percussion EnsembleThe University Percussion Ensemble will present an inaugural concert Monday, Nov. 24, at 7:30 p.m. in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts. Director of Athletic Bands Michael Thursby will lead the ensembles.

The University Percussion Ensemble performs with an extensive array of instruments, such as traditional drums, xylophones, marimbas and cymbals. The concert will feature an eclectic mix of musical styles including traditional works, contemporary music and world music from Africa, the Caribbean and Asia.

Concert admission is $9; $7 for students. Tickets may be purchased online at the Department of Music website. For more information, call the Performance Series Office at 507-389-5549.

Nov. 25: University Jazz Bands

Jazz BandsThe Department of Music will host a performance of the University Jazz Bands Tuesday, Nov. 25, at 7:30 p.m. in Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for the Performing Arts. The entire concert is dedicated to the late Fred Sturm, an internationally noted jazz composer, arranger and teacher, who passed away in August.

The Jazz Lab Band, conducted by graduate student Erik Root, will perform "A Celtic Aire," based on a traditional Irish theme, the funk infused chart "Aim High, Nzembo Na Mvula Zamba (Song of the Rainforest)," a composition based on a traditional chant of the Bambuti tribe from the Ituri rainforest and a swing arrangement, "Follow the Leader."

The Jazz Mavericks, conducted by Director of Jazz Studies Douglas Snapp will perform Sturm’s "Kind of Bluegrass.” Guitarist Andrew Bizek will be the featured soloist on the quasi rock/fusion chart "Michaelangelo." Sturm’s arrangement of Ann Ronell’s 1932 classic "Willow Weep for Me" features alto saxophone student Ritchel Lawson as soloist.

Concert admission is $9; $7 for students. Tickets may be purchased online at the Department of Music website. For more information, call the Performance Series Office at 507-389-5549.

Dec. 2: Community Orchestra Holiday Concert

OrchestraThe newly formed Minnesota State Mankato Community Orchestra will perform Tuesday, Dec. 2, at 7:30 p.m. in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts.

The concert features holiday themed music including “Polonaise” by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, “Petite Suite” by Claude Debussy, “Six Characteristic Dances” by Pyotr Ilyich Tschaikovsky, “Waltzes and March of the Toys” by Victor Herbert and the traditional holiday piece, “A Christmas Festival,” by Leroy Anderson.

Concert admission is $9; $7 for students. Tickets may be purchased online at the Department of Music website. For more information, call the Performance Series Office at 507-389-5549.

Department News

To read newsletters from around the University, click below:
College of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Campus News

Student Health Services reported that as of Nov. 11, the United States was determined to be officially Ebola-free. On behalf of Minnesota State Mankato, both Student Health Services and Environmental Health, Safety & Risk Management continue to monitor the situation.

The University, along with Minnesota State Colleges and Universities (Minnesota State), and the Southern Minnesota Health Care Coalition are actively monitoring Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) websites regarding communications and recommendations. Online resources have been collected and additional information is available through the Student Health Services website The Minnesota Department of Health has established an Ebola Information Line: 1-651-201-3920 or 1-800-657-3903.

David Jones, vice president of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, has been designated by President Richard Davenport as the primary contact for Minnesota State Mankato in response to the Ebola situation. If you have any questions about our campus plans, please contact his office at 507-389-2121 or

University Forensic Team Accomplishments

Forensics teamThe University forensics team competed at the Vocal Viking tournament at Bethany Lutheran College the weekend of Saturday, Nov. 1. The team earned a second-place finish and received the first-place quality award, which recognized the team who performed best relative to entry size. Individual awards are listed:

  • Sophomore Aletta Arndt placed 3rd in Program Oral Interpretation, 5th in Prose Interpretation and 6th in Dramatic Interpretation, earning a 10th-place individual finish overall.
  • Junior Jordan Carrillo won the Communication Analysis event.
  • Senior Sarah Cain placed 2nd in Informative Speaking.
  • Sophomore Alex Mathiowetz placed 4th in Persuasive Speaking.

The team also traveled to Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, Minn., Nov. 7-8 to compete in the Valley Forensics League Tournaments. Minnesota State Mankato placed 2nd on both day one and day two of the competition. Eleven schools competed in the tournament. Cade Shelton had five 1st-place finishes on the weekend. Brady Taylor and Arndt also had 1st-place finishes.

Faculty/Staff News

The University Advancement division announced Emily Harrison as the university advancement assistant beginning Monday, Nov. 17.

Residential Life Budget Officer April Hornemann graduated from the Department of Public Safety’s Citizens Academy. The eight-week program included patrol ride-alongs, shooting practice and investigation processes of handling fire and rescue equipment.

Professor of Political Science Joseph Kunkel was interviewed by KTOE Radio’s Wendy Wilde on Nov. 3 about the upcoming election.

Professor of Political Science Tomasz Inglot attended a post-election discussion meeting with former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle on Friday, Nov. 7, at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs. Inglot was selected as a Humphrey Institute policy fellow in 1997.

Inglot also published a book review of Brend Marin’s "Welfare in an Idle Society? Reinventing Retirement, Work, Wealth, Health, and Welfare" in the International Journal of Social Welfare.

Fall 2014 Faculty Research Grants

Research GrantsResearch and Sponsored Programs announced that $48,942.06 in faculty research grants were funded this fall. Awardees include:

Christine Black-Hughes (College of Social and Behavioral Sciences) “Comparative Analysis of Orphans Whose Parental Loss is Due to AIDS to Non-AIDS Parental Loss” in the amount of $5,000.

Angela Cooley (SBS) “Freedom’s Farms: Food Justice and Black Farmers in the Twentieth-Century” in the amount of $4,334.76.

Analia Dall’Asen (College of Science Engineering and Technology) “Characterization of Carbonaceous Chondritic Meteorites Using micro-Raman Spectroscopy” in the amount of $5,000.

Kofi Danso (SBS) “Determinants of Adolescents Knowledge of HIV/AIDS and Health Risk Behaviors in Ghana” in the amount of $5,000.

Alisa Eimen (College of Arts & Humanities) “Germany's First Purpose-Built Mosque: Ahmadiyya Islam's Arrival in 1920s Berlin” in the amount of $5,000.

Puteri Megat Hamari (CSET) “Development of First Generation of Micro Fuel Cell at Minnesota State University, Mankato” in the amount of $5,000.

Shannon Miller (SBS/A&H) in collaboration with Christopher Brown (A&H) and Sachi Sekimoto (A&H) “Surviving and Thriving: African-American Lesbian, Bisexual and Queer Women Speak” in the amount of $5,000.

Shawna Petersen-Brown (SBS) “Effectiveness and Feasibility of Computer-Assisted Instruction: A School-Based Trial” in the amount of $4,998.30.

Xuanhui Wu (CSET) “Single Piece Conformal Antenna Array for Multiple-input-multiple-output Radar” in the amount of $5,000.

Qun Zhang (CSET) “Enhancing Simulation Efficiency for Polarization Multiplexing QPSK Optical Fiber Communication Systems” in the amount of $4,609.


Harold BurchProfessor Emeritus Harold Burch died Thursday, Oct. 30. Burch was employed at the University for more than 25 years, beginning in September 1969 until his retirement in June 1995. During his tenure, he was a faculty member in the College of Education, where he taught curriculum and instruction. He also spent many years as department chair and was involved in many organizations on campus. Click here to read Burch’s complete obituary.

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 Wednesday, Dec. 3. The deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday, Nov. 28.

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.