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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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November 22, 2017 Campus Newsletter

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Chili Luncheon, 'Unions United' Collection


Faculty and staff are invited to join President Richard Davenport for the Annual Faculty and Staff Holiday Luncheon, featuring the president’s own chili recipe, specially prepared by University Dining Services on Monday, Dec. 11 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

In addition, bargaining units on campus are collecting financial donations for ECHO Food Shelf to help the organization finance the purchase of its building. Faculty and staff are encouraged to participate in the "Unions United" collection by making a financial donation to help the Unions United Food Drive.

Bargaining units are attempting to collectively raise $5,000 toward the building purchase. The traveling cutting board trophy will be awarded this year to the bargaining unit that has the highest percentage of its members donating to the fund at any amount.

Donations will be collected Monday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 8, with the winner announced at the president’s luncheon on Dec. 11. Employees may contact their bargaining unit to find out where to drop off or send donations. Forms will be available through each bargaining unit for individuals to fill out with their names and addresses so ECHO Food Shelf can send a form to use for income tax deduction purposes.

Sponsored by: AFSCME Council 5 Local 638, MAPE, IFO, ASF, MNA, MMA, MGEC and MSSA.

Bike-Friendly Campus

Minnesota State Mankato is now recognized as a “Bronze Bicycle Friendly University” by the League of American Bicyclists.

Minnesota State Mankato joins a group of 182 colleges and universities across the United States that are transforming the American landscape by providing more bicycle-friendly campuses for the benefit of students, staff, faculty and community members.

“From renewing Platinums to brand new Bronzes, this latest class of Bicycle Friendly University awardees show a wonderful commitment to safety, health, and sustainability through their efforts to support bicycling on campus,” said Amelia Neptune, director of the League’s Bicycle Friendly America Program. “We applaud this round of awardees for raising the standard and being innovative in making bicycling a safe, convenient and enjoyable option for students, staff and visitors alike.”

Learn more about the Bicycle Friendly University program at

Sesquicentennial Events

University departments or units hosting a sesquicentennial event are asked to submit event information to the 150th committee so it can be included on the 150th events page. The same form may be used to request the 150th portable exhibit panels.

After events, departments are asked to consider submitting photos with captions to be included on the past events galleries page.

Gallery submissions may be sent to

More information is available on the sesquicentennial page:

IRS Travel Regulations

Business Services reminds all faculty and staff who may be traveling and incurring business expenses that employee expense reports must be submitted in a timely manner, according to Internal Revenue Service regulations.

Employee business expenses must be submitted for reimbursement within 60 days after the expense is incurred or the trip ends. If a request for reimbursement is not submitted within 60 days, the reimbursement becomes taxable income to the employee.

In past years, some employees have incurred travel and business expenses during the summer and have waited to submit their employee expense report until the start of the next fall semester, and in a number of instances, not within the required 60 days. In adhering to the IRS rules, employees that continue this practice will be taxed on their reimbursement, so please keep this in mind when traveling or incurring business expenses.

It is always best to submit your employee expense reports as soon as your business trip is completed. Additionally, if an employee does not plan to return to Mankato after their trip is completed, they should submit their expense reports in the mail to maintain compliance with the 60-day submission requirement.

Questions regarding travel or business expense reimbursements may be directed to the university’s travel claims clerk, Tami Liebl, at 507-389-5006 or by viewing the travel website.

Looking for Minnesota State Mankato Authors

The Minnesota State Mankato Authors Collection is a special collection within the library that highlights the intellectual heritage of the University and the contributions of Minnesota State University, Mankato’s faculty, staff, students and alumni to contemporary scholarship. Included in the collection are books, monographs, DVDs and scores that were authored, co-authored, compiled, edited/co-edited, translated or illustrated by Minnesota State Mankato faculty, staff, students and alumni.

Every two years, Library Services honors faculty and staff publications at the University's Authors Reception. The next Authors Reception will be held April 4 from 2-4 p.m. in the Marilyn J. Lass Center for Minnesota Studies, 2nd floor of the Memorial Library. This event will honor faculty authors who have written and/or edited books with publication dates between March 2016 and March 2018.

If you have published (authored and/or edited) books, scores, DVDs, etc., since March 2016, Library Services would like to hear from you. Please contact the University Archives at 507-389-1029 or to be added to the list of honorees. Additional information about the Authors Collection is available online.

Nov. 27: University Jazz Bands

Minnesota State Mankato's Department of Music will host a performance of the University Jazz Bands Monday, Nov. 27 at 7:30 p.m. in Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for the Performing Arts.

The Jazz Lab Band is conducted by graduate student Will Frame. Director of Jazz Studies Douglas Snapp directs the Jazz Mavericks. The ensembles will perform jazz literature ranging from classic jazz to contemporary jazz styles including jazz arrangements of popular tunes. The groups will also perform jazz arrangements of popular holiday songs.

Concert admission is $9; $7 for students with a valid MavCard. Discount tickets are available online for University students. Advance purchase is strongly encouraged. Those who wish to purchase tickets online should go to For more information, call the Performance Series office, (507) 389-5549.

Nov. 28: Community Orchestra Concert

The Minnesota State Mankato Community Orchestra will perform Tuesday, Nov. 28 at 7:30 p.m. in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts, 320 Maywood Ave.

Orchestra Director Joseph Rodgers has recently transformed the university orchestra with area community members joining university student musicians in the group. The orchestra offers an abundance of new opportunities for both students and community members.

Concert admission is $9 and $7 for students with a valid MavCard. Discount tickets are available online for University students. Advance purchase is strongly encouraged. Those who wish to purchase tickets online should go to For more information, call the Performance Series office, (507) 389-5549.

Nov. 6-Dec. 1: Senior Art Exhibits

Senior Department of Art students at Minnesota State Mankato will display their art on campus at Conkling Gallery in two separate shows, the first from Monday, Nov. 6 through Wednesday, Nov. 15 and the second from Monday, Nov. 20 through Friday, Dec. 1.

All artwork will be on display at 139 Nelson Hall, the Conkling Gallery, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and some evenings as coverage permits.

For more information, call the Minnesota State Mankato Department of Art at 507-389-6412.

Dec. 6: 'WYSIWYG Juice Co. – Our Story'

The Minnesota State Mankato Employee Wellness Committee is sponsoring a presentation by Kristi Schuck and Marie Christiansen, owners of WYSIWYG Juice Co. in Mankato, on Wednesday, Dec. 6 from 12-1 p.m. in Centennial Student Union, Room 245.

Schuck and Christiansen will share how they met, why they started juicing, and how they developed their passion into a business.

Juice samples and snacks will be provided. Due to limited space, please contact Wendy Schuller via email to register.

Student News

Honors students Katelynn Malecha (exercise science, ‘18) and Sarah Aldrich (Spanish education, ‘18) were selected to make a presentation, “Focusing on Ability, Not the Disability,” during a poster session at the 52nd annual National Collegiate Honors Council conference Nov. 8-12 in Atlanta. Malecha and Aldrich also led a workshop, “(In)ability; Leading by Weakness.”

Also attending the National Collegiate Honors Council conference were honors students Hunter Herber (biomedical sciences,’20) and Ana Leyva (music education, ’19), along with Honors graduate assistant Samantha Campa (educational leadership, ’19).

Faculty/Staff News

David Cowan, director of Facilities Services, was recently named one of two recipients of the Students United 2017 Outstanding Alumni Awards by Students United, an independent, non-profit organization funded and operated by students from the Minnesota State system's seven universities. The other recipient, Justin Klander, is an alumnus of Bemidji State University. The awares were presented Friday, Nov. 17 at the organization’s 50th Anniversary Gala in St. Paul. Nearly 300 students, alumni, partners and supporters were in attendance. Cowan, who has worked for Minnesota State Mankato for more than 45 years, graduated from the University in 1970. During his time as a student at Minnesota State Mankato, he served on the Minnesota State Student Association and was a board member for Students United.

Beth Beschorner, an assistant professor and graduate program coordinator in the Department of Elementary and Early Childhood, and colleague Anna Hall (assistant professor at Clemson University) recently had an article “Taking a Closer Look at Your Informational Writing Instruction,” published in The Reading Teacher.

Anne Dahlman (director of the Minnesota State Mankato Honors Program) presented on the panel, “Increasing Diversity in Honors from the Inside-Out” at the 52nd annual National Collegiate Honors Council conference Nov. 8-12 in Atlanta. Dahlman, along with Heather Camp (faculty member in the Department of English) and Giovanna Walters (assistant director of Minnesota State Mankato's Honors Program and university fellowship coordinator), also presented an informational session, “Innovating Honors to Accommodate Dual Enrollment and AP.” Camp was also a member of the editorial board and peer-reviewed journal, Honors in Practice. Walters also participated in two panels: “A Place at the Table: Honors Advising in the Context of Diversity” and “Honors Advising and the Honors Mission.”

Student Health Services staff members Jodi Egeland, medical director and psychiatric nurse practitioner, and Wendy Schuh, director, in collaboration with Diane Coursol in the Counseling and Student Personnel program, presented a pilot study, “Telepsychiatry in College Health,” at the North Central College Health Association Annual Meeting in Cedar Falls, Iowa, on Oct. 19.

Becky Miller, special events coordinator, joined the Office of the Provost and Division of Academic Affairs effective Nov. 15. Miller will continue to coordinate commencement and other special events on campus.

Medea Myhra, a University & environmental compliance officer, has two patents and recently learned that one of them will be featured in a 2018 Patent Calendar. The calendar will feature 365 patents, and each month will detail several different figures from a few patents as well as listing an individual patent, its title and inventors on each day of the month. One of Myhra's patents appears on Jan. 26 – for Patent #8,012,497 – Cleansing lotion with moisturizing, protecting and odor controlling agents and cloth comprising said lotion, which issued on Sept. 6, 2011.

Department News

Minnesota State Mankato’s Department of Biological Sciences has been awarded a National Science Foundation Major Research Instrumentation Program grant in the amount of $575,211 that allowed the department to acquire a state-of-the-art laser scanning confocal microscope. A news release is available here.

The Nov. 17 edition of the Community Engagement newsletter is now available. The newsletters can be accessed by scrolling to the bottom of the page at this link or by sending an email to and requesting a copy.

Last chance: The Blue Earth County Historical Society opened a special exhibit highlighting Minnesota State Mankato's nearly 150-year history Saturday, Sept. 23 at the Blue Earth County History Center, located at 424 Warren Street in Mankato. The exhibit, titled "Celebrating Minnesota State Mankato 150 Years: From Normal School to University," will be on display through Nov. 25 and is free and open to the public. The exhibit includes photographs and artifacts featuring different places on campus as well as fun facts and stories about the growth of the University and changes in student life.

The Student Events Team upcoming schedule of events is available here.

The Department of Geography has announced the 2017 Geography Colloquium Fall Schedule.


Patricia Earle, an emerita faculty member, died Oct. 28. She was employed at Minnesota State Mankato as an associate professor in the School of Nursing for 24 years and retired in 2006. An obituary is available here.

Raphael "Ralph" Kudela, an emeritus faculty member, died Nov. 11. He was employed at Minnesota State Mankato for 28 years as a professor in the Special Education Department and retired in 1999. An obituary is available here.

Online TODAY Magazine

Online TODAY Magazine

Visit 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. 6. The deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (Dec. 1).

You should also submit your event to the university's official Campus Events Calendar by sending an email to Shirley Piepho at