shortcut to content
Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and the Campus Community: click here for COVID-19 news and updates.


November 21, 2018 Campus Newsletter

Page address:

Club Handball Excellence

Two Minnesota State Mankato students who are members of the Minnesota State Mankato club handball team competed at the World Players of Handball Pro Stop tournament in Tucson, Ariz., Nov. 2-4.

Tyler Stoffel (pictured above) of the Maverick men’s team lost to the sixth-ranked professional player, Emmett Peixoto, by a score of 15-3, 15-8 and finished 11th in the pro tournament.

Ciana Ni Churraoin (pictured at left) of the Maverick women’s team defeated the fourth-ranked professional player, Tracy Davis, in the semifinals of the tournament before falling to the first-ranked pro, Catriona Casey, in the finals by a score of 15-7,16-14.

An article about the World Players of Handball Pro Stop tournament was published online by WPH Live here.

The Minnesota State Mankato handball club is one of the many sport clubs on campus that are offered through the Office of Campus Recreation. Sport clubs are officially sponsored by the Office of Campus Recreation and the Student Activities Office and are supported through student activity fees.

The handball club meets regularly during the week to play handball on campus, travels to local tournaments and to the United States Handball Association’s National Collegiate Handball tournament. The club handball coach is Mike Wells. 

Campus Transition to Office 365 is Coming

In December, Minnesota State Mankato will transition to the Office 365 tenant that is supported by the Minnesota State system. This system will increase the University's digital security, streamline all login processes, allow for D2L integration, and align the University more closely with the Minnesota State system.

This change will affect everyone on campus. IT Solutions will be available to assist with any issues during the transition and throughout the beginning of the spring semester.

Additional updated information will be posted at as the changeover gets closer.

The campus community is invited to attend any one of the following open sessions in the weeks leading to the transition.

All open sessions will be held in Ostrander Auditorium:

  • Wed., Nov. 28:       9 – 10 a.m.
  • Thurs., Nov. 29:     11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
  • Wed., Dec. 5:         9 – 10 a.m.
  • Thurs., Dec. 6:       2 – 3 p.m.

Bus Tracking Website

Minnesota State Mankato has partnered with the Mankato Transit System to create a new bus tracking website.

This website allows the community to see all active bus routes and the nearly real-time locations of Mankato buses as they travel along their routes.

The goal of the new system is for users to be reassured by the ability to see that their ride is coming, and also help new riders become familiar with Mankato bus routes.

The bus tracking website is available by going to and clicking on the "Find Your Bus!" button. It is suggested that users bookmark the site, or add it to home screens so it is always available when needed.

The website works on all modern web browsers, computers and smartphones.

The community is encouraged to both use and provide feedback on the website. Future plans include Android and iPhone apps.

Unions United Food Drive

Bargaining units on campus are once again holding the “Unions United Food Drive” to benefit the ECHO Food Shelf.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to make food and financial donations for ECHO Food Shelf. The food drive will run from Nov. 26 to Dec. 17.

The traveling cutting board trophy will be awarded this year to the campus building that collects the most food and cash donations during this time period.

The winner will be announced at the president’s chili luncheon on Dec. 17, and donations will also be accepted Dec. 17 at the chili luncheon.

The Unions United Food Drive is sponsored by: AFSCME Local 638, ASF, IFO, MAPE, MGEC, MMA and MNA.

Donations may be dropped off with the following University staff members at the following campus locations: 

  • Cindy Arndt, AF 126
  • Sue Darge, IFO Office, MH 240
  • Julie Dornack, ML 3104
  • Bonnie Hanson, MF 124
  • Robin Langemo, PS 103
  • Valerie Roberts, HU 101
  • Katie Roeder, WA 132
  • Deb Spreng, TN 131
  • Vicki Hanson, WA 238

New 'LEAD-Mankato' Class

Minnesota State Mankato's Counseling Center announced that a new 1-credit course, LEAD-Mankato, will be offered in spring 2019 on Tuesdays from 4:30-6 p.m.

LEAD is an acronym that stands for "Learn, Explore, Access and Develop."

The course is a wellness and academic skills-building course for students that will help them  improve their mental health and well-being, while increasing awareness of their academic strengths, value and resources.

Throughout the semester, students will learn more about their personal values, strengths and interests. Students will practice skills for healthy relationships, for increasing wellness and for self-care.

Students will also learn more about their personal learning styles, study and test-taking strategies, planning and organization, and SMART goal setting.

This course is made possible through an educational innovations grant, and in collaboration with Boston University. Students will be asked to meet with the course instructors prior to joining the class to ensure that this is a good fit for their needs as students.

For more information, contact Lindsay Murn at or Kimberly Sommers at or call 507-389-1455.

Nov. 19-Dec. 7: Student Art League Juried Show

Minnesota State Mankato’s Student Art League is hosting its annual juried show from Nov. 19-Dec. 7 in the Centennial Student Union Gallery (located on the building’s lower level).

The show will juried by local artist Alexander Judkins.

The exhibit, free and open to the public, will be open during Centennial Student Union open hours.

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

The complete 2018-2019 exhibit schedule, list of artist residencies and lecture series is located online here

Nov. 27: University Jazz Big Bands

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

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.

General admission is $9 and $7 for K-12 students and Minnesota State Mankato students with a valid MavCard. Those who wish to purchase tickets online should go to For more information, call the Performance Series office, (507) 389-5549.

Nov. 28: 'Baby it's Cold Outside' Benefit Concert

Students from Dale Haefner’s concert production class at Minnesota State Mankato are sponsoring a food and clothing drive Wednesday, Nov 28 from 7:30-10 p.m. at Pub 500, 500 South Front Street, Mankato. The event also features four college musical artists from the University student-run label, MavHouse Records.

The “Baby It’s Cold Outside” concert is in support of those who are underprepared for the cold winter months. Winter clothing and food donations are especially valuable for people in need, and the students wish to bring warmth and happiness to the Mankato community through this concert. Donations of any non-perishable food items will support the Echo Food Shelf, and clothing donations will support the Mankato Salvation Army.

More information is available here.

The concert is open to the general public and all ages are welcome. Admission is free, and attendees are encouraged to participate in our raffle for great prizes. For more information, contact Dale Haefner at 507-389-5549 or

Nov. 29: University Concert Wind Ensemble Concert

Minnesota State Mankato's concert wind ensemble members will be performing Thursday, Nov. 29 at 7:30 p.m. The concert takes place in the Elias J. Halling Recital Hall of the Earley Center for Performing Arts, 320 Maywood Ave.

The ensemble is under the direction of Amy K. Roisum Foley.

The concert wind ensemble will perform music with musical imagery, magic and mystery, "taking concert attendees on a musical journey around the world."

Concert admission is $9 for community members and $7 for University students with a valid MavCARD, K-12 students and children. 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. 30: Women in STEM Networking Dinner

A “Women in STEM Networking Dinner” on the topic of social media professionalism will be held Friday, Nov. 30 from 5-8:30 p.m. at Minnesota State University, Mankato in Centennial Student Union’s Room 253.

The purpose of this free public event is to provide an opportunity for post-secondary students in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) degree programs and professionals in STEM careers to meet and form informal mentorships, collectively building a network of support and positive role models.

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Dress is business and business casual, and parking is free in the University’s Visitor Pay Lot on the south side of Centennial Student Union. A complete event schedule and online registration is available here.

The hosts of the event are the Minnesota State Engineering Center of Excellence and the Minnesota State Mankato Women’s Center and the College of Science, Engineering and Technology at the University. The event sponsors are a Regenerative Medicine Minnesota, Design Ready Controls and Finley Engineering.

For more information, contact Melissa A. Huppert, STEM outreach director for the Minnesota State Engineering Center of Excellence, by phone at 507-389-2110 or by email at

Dec. 4: Community Orchestra Concert

The Minnesota State Mankato community orchestra will perform Tuesday, Dec. 4 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 for community members and $7 for University students with a valid MavCARD, K-12 students and children. 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.

Dec. 7-8: Fall Dance Concert

Minnesota State Mankato's fall dance concert will feature diverse works choreographed by faculty, students and guest artists.

The program will feature ballet, tap, modern and jazz.

The dance concert will run 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7 and 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8 in the Ted Paul Theatre, Earley Center for Performing Arts. The student dance showcase, exclusively featuring student work, will be 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9 in the Ted Paul Theatre.

Tickets for the fall dance concert are $10 regular; $9 for seniors ages 65 and older, children under 16 and groups of 15 or more; and $8 for Minnesota State Mankato students. Tickets for the student showcase are $5 and available at the door.

Contact Julie Kerr-Berry at for more information.

Nov. 12-Dec. 11: Senior Student Art Exhibitions

Senior Department of Art students at Minnesota State Mankato are displaying their art on campus at Conkling Gallery in two separate shows. The first show has concluded. It was held Monday, Nov. 12 through Tuesday, Nov. 20. The second show begins Monday, Dec. 3 and runs through Tuesday, Dec. 11.

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.

The public is welcome to meet all students on the first night of each show.

The upcoming show runs from Dec. 3-11 and features an opening reception at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 3. Students whose art will be displayed in Show 2 include: Ab Chang; Jenna Goede; Austin Hassebroek; Megan Hoffman; Paajntsaas Kong; Abbie Lindhorst; Juyeon Park; Olivia Sirek; Emily Spieker; Kayla Swart; and Michelle Vlasak.

Show 1 (Nov. 12 to Nov. 20), featured an opening reception at 7 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 12. Students whose art was displayed in Show 1 included: Zachary Brue; Bailey EidahlCharity Hess; Brittany Kjelden; Angela Laine; Trevor McCauley; Michael McClellan; Ernest Norris; Tycen Rhodes; Trystin Smith; and Kylie Wilcox.

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

Forensics Results

Minnesota State Mankato's speech and debate team traveled to Peoria, Ill., on Nov. 3-4 to compete in the 71st annual L.E. Norton memorial tournament, hosted by Bradley University. Twenty-five colleges and universities from around the country attended the tournament.

The Mavericks earned four finals placings at the tournament:

  • Emma Roggeman — Tournament champion in Novice Prose.
  • Maggie Falkowski — 4th place in Novice Prose; 7th place in Novice Communication Analysis.
  • Kylee Johnson & Kaylene Kruse — 7th place in Varsity Duo.

The team will next be preparing for new events in competitions at the Vally Forensics League tournaments in December.

Student News

Current Minnesota State Mankato master of fine arts (prose) student Carson Faust and master of fine arts alums Michael Torres (poetry) and Lissa Horneber (prose) each received $10,000 grants from the Minnesota Arts Board.

Department of Music students Molly Schumacher and Ana Leyva won awards in November at the Minnesota Chapter National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) Student Auditions. Schumacher received third place in the “Second Year” Lower College Independent Studio Women’s Division. Leyva received second place in the Upper College Music Theater Women’s Division. Both students competed against several talented students in their divisions from Minnesota and North Dakota. Department of Music vocal professors Aaron Humble and Stephanie Thorpe took Schumacher, Leyva and five other students to the student auditions.

Two Minnesota State Mankato students who are veterans, Morgan and Morgan Mahan, were interviewed by Mike McNamara, founder and host of All Marine Radio, during his visit to campus on Veterans Day weekend. The interview can be heard in a podcast here.

An inspirational story about Minnesota State Mankato alumnus Josie Alleva was recently published in Runners World.

Department of Art alumna Gina Hunt received a 2018-2019 HATCH project from the Chicago Artists Coalition.

Jeff Dahlke, who earned a master's degree from Minnesota State Mankato's industrial-organizational psychology program, is a current doctoral candidate at the University of Minnesota. Dahlke was recently awarded the prestigious Meredith P. Crawford Fellowship in I-O Psychology from the Human Resources Research Organization (HumRRO). This fellowship is awarded to a graduate student demonstrating exceptional research skills. HumRRO is an industry leader in research and development for training, high-stakes assessments, leadership, and human capital research.

Faculty/Staff News 

John Krenz, professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, is the lead author of an article published in the Oct. 24, 2018 edition of Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology. The title of the article is “Use of sun compass orientation during natal dispersal in Blanding's Turtles: in situ field experiments with clock-shifting and disruption of magnetoreception.” A press release from Springer Nature is available here.

Paul Force-Emery Mackie, professor of social work and university assessment coordinator, was recently cited in an article about rural depression titled "Out of the Darkness" that was published in the November 2018 issue of The Furrow magazine, the primary international publication of the John Deere Corporation.

Chris Veltsos, professor in the Department of Computer Information Science, successfully requested that Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton proclaim the week of Nov. 12-17 as "Cybersecurity Career Awareness Week" in Minnesota. The proclamation is available online here.

Global Education announced the following faculty and staff members as recipients of the University's 2018 Global Citizens Award for making a major contribution to globalization efforts at Minnesota State Mankato: Brigette Cooper; Anne Dahlman; Kari Doffing; Brenda Flannery; Diane Hamilton; Han-Way Huang; and Diane Huettl.

Faculty member Phillip Larson, an associate professor and the director of earth science programs in the Department of Geography, was featured in a Sunday, Nov. 18 Mankato Free Press article about research done by Larson, colleagues and students on slope failures locally and across the state. The article is available online here.

Brian Frink, faculty chair of the Department of Art, designed the cover of "The Winter Bees," a book by Jill Kalz that was published in 2018 by Minneopa Valley Press (click here for video of book trailer). Kalz's book celebrates and gives voice to the underrepresented, quiet lives of rural southern Minnesota. The 10 interconnected, character-driven short stories circle around a cast of residents who bend but do not break, and whose duties often mean personal restraint and heartbreak.

Gregory T. Wilkins, associate director for the Centennial Student Union & Student Activities, was elected to serve a two-year term with the Minneapolis Exhibition Artist Program, a curatorial program of the Minneapolis Institute of Art.

Department News

On Nov. 8, the Department of Music hosted its annual choral invitational. About 300 students were on campus from four high schools. This annual event allows high school students to be introduced to the University's vocal program, faculty and students. Physical and vocal warm-ups were led by voice faculty and sectionals by music education students. The students also had an opportunity to audition in front of the University's vocal faculty to sing a solo in the choral invitational concert, which was held that evening at SS Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Mankato.

Minnesota State Mankato joined the Mankato Area Public Schools and the Mahkato Mdewakanton Association in recently being named the recipient of a local government innovation award from the University of Minnesota's Humphrey School of Public Affairs. The award was in the Native Nations Category, and all awardees will be formally recognized at a Dec. 13 awards ceremony and reception in Minneapolis. A Mankato Area Public Schools Facebook post on the award is available here.

A fall sociology course, Animals & Society, is holding a movie series on select Thursdays this fall to learn more about the relationship between humans and other animals. The films, shown at 5 p.m. in Armstrong Hall 101, are free and open to the public. The remaining date and film title is Nov. 29, when "Love & Bananas" (documentary) will be shown. After each film, there will be a class discussion and/or presenter.

The Nov. 9, 2018, 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.

Online TODAY Magazine

Visit the online TODAY magazine at for alumni news 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 to 95,000 alumni and friends.

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


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 5. The deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (Nov. 30).

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