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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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January 24, 2018 Campus Newsletter

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National Finalist Student Team

A team of four Minnesota State University, Mankato College of Business students was one of seven teams from across the nation to make the finals in the 7th Annual Indiana University Kelley School of Business National Diversity Case Competition, held Friday and Saturday, Jan. 12-13 in Bloomington, Ind.

The Minnesota State Mankato student team included (from left to right in photo) Riccardo Prosdocimi, a senior from Italy, who is majoring in marketing and management and economics; Victoria Camasmie, a senior from Brazil, who is majoring in international business; Nathaniel Branwall, a senior from Stillwater, Minn., who is majoring in finance and environmental science; and Othmane Sekkat, a senior from Morocco, who is majoring in finance.

The full news release is available here.

Student Leadership Awards

Minnesota State Mankato will be accepting nominations for the annual Student Leadership Awards from Monday, Jan. 22 through Friday, Feb. 9.

Nominations recognize individual and organizational involvement on campus and in the greater Mankato community.

The award nominees and recipients will be recognized at the Minnesota State Mankato Leadership Awards Ceremony on Sunday, April 15 at 4 p.m. in Centennial Student Union, Room 253/4/5.

To access the nomination form and guidelines or for more information, please visit the leadership awards Web page or contact Student Activities at 507-389-6076.

Encourage Students to Apply for Scholarships Feb. 1-28

University Advancement has requested that faculty and staff encourage students to apply for scholarships from Feb. 1-28 on Scholarship Finder.

Scholarship Finder offers easy, one-stop access to University scholarships.

Students can find and apply for scholarships based on their major, interests, background, grade point average and more.

Once they sign in, they’ll complete a general application and the site will then give customized recommendations that match their academic records.

'Spotlight' on Research Funding Success

Minnesota State Mankato is teeming with active research and innovation. As of Dec. 31, the University's talented faculty and staff have submitted 55 applications and received 54 awards.

Already in FY18, the University has secured $6,545,184 for externally funded projects, which is $1.8 million more than was awarded at the same time last year. 

Every submission counts and can increase the overall success of the University to secure external funding.

In the weeks to come, the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs will be recognizing individuals integral to making that happen for the University.

Those with thoughts on how to promote these achievements, are encourage to email Kristel Seth, director of Research and Sponsored Programs, at

Give Kids a Smile

Minnesota State Mankato’s Department of Dental Hygiene and area dental professionals are joining a statewide effort to provide free dental care to area children Thursday, Feb. 1 and Friday, Feb. 2.

The project is inspired by concern over a growing number of children who are unable to access needed dental care.

The free “Give Kids a Smile” clinic for children will be Thursday, Feb. 1 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. and Friday, Feb. 2 from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. in Minnesota State Mankato’s Clinical Sciences Building.

Those individuals interested in scheduling an appointment should call the dental clinic at 507-389-2147.

Patients seeking appointments for cleanings, x-rays, exams, fluoride treatments, and sealants should be under the age of 18 and accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.

Minnesota State Mankato will also be offering free dental exams and x-rays for adults on Friday, Feb. 3 from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. Please call 507-389-2147 to schedule an appointment.

Scholars at Work Conference

Minnesota State Mankato is hosting a Scholars at Work Conference for faculty members on Friday, March 30, and calls for proposals are now being accepted, with a deadline of Thursday, Feb. 15.

Jennifer Veltsos, director of the University's Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning and an associate professor of technical communication in the Department of English, described the upcoming conference as an on-campus opportunity for faculty to create networking opportunities and more.

"Teaching, creative achievement, and research are integral components of academic life," wrote Veltsos. "But the irony is that faculty work is better known by people outside of the university rather than those of us within it. Therefore, full-time and contingent faculty are invited to participate in a one-day, peer-reviewed academic conference showcasing the teaching, research, and creative works of the Minnesota State Mankato community.

"The Scholars at Work Conference is an opportunity to learn more about the exciting intellectual work happening all around us and to create networking opportunities that may lead to future collaborations and innovations. Faculty are also encouraged to present with graduate students to help their professional development, too."

For more information, read the call for proposals online here.

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:

Jan. 25: Scottie Miller Band

The Scottie Miller Band returns to perform at Minnesota State Mankato on Thursday, Jan. 25 at 7:30 p.m. at the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts, 320 Maywood Ave.

Scottie Miller is an American pianist and singer-songwriter from Minneapolis. His musical style is a combination of blues, soul, funk and jazz. Miller is recognized for his high-energy performances, creative song writing, dramatic lyrics and extraordinary piano playing. 

The Scottie Miller Band is currently touring to promote its latest CD, “Stay Above Water.” Recorded in Minneapolis in early 2017, the newest album is an ultimate sonic statement about quality and what making music in its entirety should be all about for any artist. 

Concert admission is $12; $11 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.

Jan. 29: Michael Thursby Faculty Recital

Minnesota State Mankato's Department of Music presents Michael Thursby in a percussion recital Monday, Jan. 29 at 7:30 p.m. in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts.

Thursby is the director of athletic bands and percussion at Minnesota State Mankato, where he teaches courses in percussion and assists with the University instrumental ensembles along with directing the athletic bands.

Thursby’s recital will focus on the history of the drum, starting with early styles of drumming and moving forward into modern percussion repertoire.

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

Jan. 29-Feb. 14: Shveta Agarwal Student Art Exhibit

Shveta Agarwal, a student in the Department of Art and a ceramics and sculpture artist, will display her work in an exhibit titled "Cohesion" in the Centennial Student Union Gallery (lowel level of CSU) from Monday, Jan. 29 through Wednesday, Feb. 14.

There will be an opening reception on Monday, Jan. 29 at 7 p.m. at the CSU Gallery.

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

The complete 2017-2018 Centennial Student Union Gallery Schedule, as well as the Conkling Gallery Schedule and list of artist residencies and lecture series is available online.

Jan. 31: Minnesota Singer Tim Cheesebrow

Minnesota singer Tim Cheesebrow packs 20 years of songwriting and five solo albums into his guitar case during a Wednesday, Jan. 31 performance from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Flex Programming Space in the Centennial Student Union's lower level.

Hosted by the CSU Serendipity Music Series, Cheesebrow’s performance is free and open to the public.

Cheesebrow is the founder of Discover Music, a non-profit middle and high school songwriting program.

Lenny Koupal, coordinator of the Serendipity Music Series, said he was drawn to Cheesebrow’s Americana sound while researching Minnesota musicians.

“Take a Zac Brown sound, add a dash of John Cougar Mellencamp style and mix it with a Minnesota version of James Taylor songwriting and you come up with Tim Cheesebrow’s distinctive sound,” said Koupal. “His songs are penned with personalized views ranging from social justice to family values to Minnesota pride. Take your lunchbreak and come hear for yourself.”

The CSU’s ongoing Serendipity Music Series seeks to expose students, the campus and the Mankato community to a range of genres by Minnesota musicians.

Feb. 1: The Barley Jacks

The Barley Jacks, a Minnesota-based inventive bluegrass and roots music quartet, will perform Thursday, Feb. 1 at 7:30 p.m. in Minnesota State Mankato's Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts, 320 Maywood Ave.

Front-man and fiddle player Brian Wicklund will be joined by Mike Cramer on guitar, Jim Chenowith on upright bass and Joel Arpin on percussion. The quartet are masters of the fiddle, guitar, bass and drum. Each member of the group brings their divergent backgrounds of blues and bluegrass, classical and Celtic, R & B and bebop to inspire each other and create something entirely new. The Barley Jacks credit Stuart Duncan, Natalie MacMaster, Tim O¹Brien and Ben Winship among their musical influences.

Concert admission is $15; $13 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.

Feb. 1-11: George Orwell's '1984'

Of the number of concerns George Orwell explored in his book “1984,” one glaring question raised is what happens when there are no watchdogs.

Up next in the Minnesota State Mankato Theatre & Dance Mainstage season is the play version of Orwell’s famous work, and Director Heather E. Hamilton explores and emphasizes that very threat to society.

Hamilton writes, “Our country was founded on the idea that individuals would seek truth, find facts, and think for themselves. The press, in reporting on events, was intended to help Americans find those truths. Good journalism does not spread lies. Good government does not ‘wage war’ on good journalists. Let us find facts and believe what we find, instead of passively swallowing party lines. Let us dig deeper for truth and never, NEVER, simply believe what we know not to be true. Two plus two will never equal five.”

About the play: Based on the iconic novel by George Orwell, “1984” brings us the story of Winston Smith, a cog in the giant machine state of Oceania. Physically and mentally under the omnipresent eye of Big Brother, Winston has been caught struggling for scraps of love and freedom in a world awash with distrust and violence. With the brutal "help" of four Party Members, Winston is forced to confess his Thoughtcrimes before an unseen inquisitor, and the audience – which acts as a silent witness to his torture. A ferocious and provocative adaptation of one of the most prescient works of literature of the last century.

The play runs 7:30 p.m. Feb. 1-3 and 7-10; and 2 p.m. Feb. 4, 10 and 11 in the Andreas Theatre, Earley Center for Performing Arts, Minnesota State Mankato.

Tickets are $16 regular; $14 for seniors ages 65 and older, children under 16 and groups of 15 or more; and $11 for Minnesota State Mankato students. Contact Amanda Dyslin at 507-389-6663, or for more information.

Feb. 5: Red Cross Blood Drive

The Upward Bound program and the Maverick volleyball team are co-sponsoring a Red Cross Blood Drive.

It will be held Monday, Feb. 5 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

Appointments can be made by calling 389-1211 or by going online and entering sponsor code MSUUPWARD.

Walk-ins are always welcome.

Donations are encouraged, as blood supplies are extremely low due to the extreme winter weather.

Feb. 5-26: Jason S. Yi Art Exhibit

An art exhibit titled "Terraform" by artist Jason S. Yi will be on display in Minnesota State Mankato’s Conkling Gallery (located in Nelson Hall 139) from Monday, Feb. 5 through Monday, Feb. 26.

The exhibit is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday as coverage permits. Please call 507-389-6412 to ensure the gallery is open.

Yi will present a lecture on Monday, Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. in Ostrander Auditorium, with a gallery reception immediately following the lecture.

Yi's presentation is a Nadine B. Andreas Artist Lecture that is part of the Minnesota State Mankato Department of Art’s Art Enrichment and Andreas Endowment Lecture and Residency Series. Yi will be on campus for an artist residency from Feb. 5-12 in the Nelson Hall Art Studios and Conkling Gallery.

According to a Department of Art preview of the exhibit, Yi works across artistic disciplines: photography, video, sculpture, drawing, multimedia and installations. He has exhibited nationally and internationally in places such as New York, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, Japan, China, Korea, Vietnam, Italy and Austria. Notably, his installation work was included in the international biennial exhibition at the Inside-out Art Museum in Beijing in 2013, and most recently his work was included in the Sculpture Milwaukee 2017, international exhibition of public art.

For more information, call the Minnesota State Mankato Department of Art at 507-389-6412. The complete 2017-2018 Conkling Gallery Schedule, list of artist residencies and lecture series is located at

Student News

Tim Jackman, the undergraduate assistant coach for the men's hockey team, was recently featured in an article on According to the article, Jackman is a senior who will graduate this spring with a degree in interdisciplinary studies.

Mariah Cowan, a junior nursing student from Andover, Minn., has been named recipient of a $9,750 Dr. Donald and Marjorie Meredith Nursing Scholarship for 2017-2018 at Minnesota State Mankato. Cowan will receive $3,250 each semester for the last three semesters of the program, allowing her to participate in School of Nursing and Student Nurses Association in addition to serving on the College of Allied Health and Nursing Advisory Board.

Sam Pawlik, a University sophomore, will be recognized in a short pregame ceremony prior to the Feb. 2 Maverick men's hockey game for being named the highest-ranked student this past summer at Marine Officer Candidate School in Quantico, Va.

Faculty/Staff News

Mohamed Diab, associate professor in the Department of Construction Management, has begun his role as the PMI MN president & CEO for 2018. More information is available here.

Gregory Wilkins, associate director of the Centennial Student Union and Student Activities, is exhibiting “Shreds of Evidence” at the Waseca Art Center, with an opening reception on Friday, Jan. 19 from 5-8 p.m. Wilkins will highlight elements from his Minnesota State Mankato sabbatical in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia, Borneo and Bangladesh. The show will run through Feb. 16.

Department News

The College of Education reported that the Minnesota Board of School Administrators recently granted continuing approval for Minnesota State Mankato's administrative licensure programs for Superintendent, K-12 Principal, Director of Special Education and Director of Community Education preparation.

The Center for Talent Development reported that Minnesota State Mankato has received the following Minnesota Job Skills Partnership Grants: a $49,286 grant to work with General Label,  a company in Minneapolis, to develop and deliver curriculum for 47 employees in "ISO 9001 System Development" and "Manufacturing Leadership"; and an $85,594 grant to work with Michael Foods, Inc., a company headquartered in Minnetonka, Minn., in customizing two courses for 81 employees. The courses are titled "SMED (Quick Changeover) training" and "Designing Autonomous Maintenance Programs."

The January 2018 edition of the Human Resources newsletter is now [PDF] available at this link (266 KiB).

The Jan. 19 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.

The Spring 2018 edition of the University Fellowships newsletter is now available. The newsletters can be accessed at this link or by sending an email to and requesting a copy.

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


James Adams, who was employed at Minnesota State Mankato for 20 years before retiring in 1986, died Jan. 11. He was employed in the Mathematics Department. 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, Feb. 7. The deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (Feb. 2).

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