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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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April 10, 2019 Campus Newsletter

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Senior Art Exhibits

Senior Show poster

Minnesota State University, Mankato Department of Art students are displaying their art at the University’s Conkling Gallery in three annual senior exhibits from Monday, April 1 through Tuesday, May 7.

All artwork will be on display at 139 Nelson Hall, the Conkling Gallery, during gallery hours (9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and some evenings as coverage permits). The public is welcome to meet all students of each art gallery on the first night of every exhibit. Upcoming receptions are at 7 p.m. in the gallery on April 15 and April 29.

  • Exhibit 1 was held April 1-9. Students displaying art included Maddison Bickle, Sierra Coy, Caitlin Feikema, Katie Grambart, Kelsey Hood, Cody Landkammer, Malinda Murray, Meghan Rosenau and Yeng Thao.
  • Exhibit 2 is set for April 15-23 with students Christine Chen, Josiah deNeui, Dylan Fitzgibbons, Samantha Gruis, Connor Johanson, Noah Langworthy, Dasha Person and Roscoe Rush.
  • Exhibit 3 will be April 29-May 7 with students Ian Clawson, Spencer Driver, John Grabko, Megan Hoffman, Shea Lahr, Ellie McNamara, Edson Rosas and Cecelia Schieffer.

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

University Archives Seeks Historical Items

University Archives reminds offices and departments that are cleaning offices and work areas to donate historical material to the University Archives.

University Archives is the official repository of Minnesota State University, Mankato and collects records, documents and other material documenting the history of the institution. Items of particular interest include college, department or organizational meeting minutes, newsletters, program information, photographs and other materials that tell the history of the University.

Those with questions are invited to contact University Archives by email at or by phone at 507-389-1029.

FY19 Employee Expense Reports

Completed employee expense reports for business expenses incurred in fiscal year 2019 (July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019) must be received in the Business Office by July 5, 2019.

To comply with Minnesota Management and Budget regulations, expense reports for expenses incurred in FY19 received after July 5 requires a written explanation, which must be approved and signed by the division head before the expenses can be reimbursed. These expenses will be posted to FY19. This applies not only to travel, but any reimbursement that would be listed under “other expenses” on an employee expense report; i.e. supplies, copies, software, tuition, etc.

Also, for your information, a trip which begins in June and extends into July is charged to the fiscal year which has the most days of travel. For example, travel which begins June 28, 2019, and ends July 9, 2019, would get charged to FY20.

All FY19 business expense entries of any kind, additions, updates, advance settlements and expense transfers must be completed by Friday, July 5, 2019.

IRS Requirements for Travel Claims

With the end of spring semester arriving, Business Services wants to remind all faculty and staff who may be traveling and incurring business expenses during the summer of the IRS requirements for the timely submission of employee expense reports. Several years ago the IRS clarified its requirements regarding the prompt reimbursement of employee business expenses.

The main thing to remember is that 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. Consequently, federal, state, FICA and Medicare withholding taxes must be taken from the reimbursement and submitted to the IRS. The withholding taxes can add up to nearly 40% of your total reimbursement request.

In past years, Business Services has noticed 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. In a number of instances, the requests for reimbursements were not submitted within 60 days. In adhering to the IRS rules, employees that continue this practice will find themselves being taxed on their reimbursement. Employees are advised to keep this in mind when traveling or incurring business expenses over the summer. It is always best to submit employee expense reports as soon as a 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 so that they can show compliance with the 60-day submission requirement.

Those with questions regarding travel or business expense reimbursements may contact the university’s travel claims clerk, Tami Liebl (389-5006), or view the University's travel website.

Web Express

IT Solutions announced the launching of Web Express, a series of upcoming open work sessions aimed at giving the campus faculty and staff an opportunity to ask specific questions about their department's website and work one-on-one or brainstorm ideas with IT Solutions staff.

The sessions are aimed at the NEW content management system and are for anyone at any point in their web journey, whether just planning or fully launched.

IT Solutions can assist with content planning, site mapping, best practices, how-tos and more. The work sessions are also designed for participants to learn from peers across campus.

Anyone interested in attending is asked to RSVP online (RSVPs are not required, but are preferred). Participants are asked to bring a laptop if they have one available. Sessions will be held in 3012 Memorial Library (located inside the IT Solutions department entrance).

Upcoming Sessions

  • Thursday, April 11 -- 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 17 -- 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
  • Thursday, April 25 -- 2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, May 1 -- 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Lifelong Learners Spring 2019 Program

The Mankato Area Lifelong Learners will be hosting a series of presentations and speakers from April through June.

Topics include a session on “Understanding Minnesota's Climatology”; a session that will address “History Does Matter: Considering the Renaming of Sibley Park”; a six-part series of “Spring Bird Walks”; a presentation titled “Experiencing Hubble: Understanding the Greatest Images of the Universe”; and many more sessions.

Cost of quarterly presentations and the speaker series are $5 for members and $10 for non-members.

Online registration is available at Choose “Class Schedule,” and then click on “Register Online Now.” For more information, call 507-389-2011.

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month throughout the United States, and the Violence Awareness and Response Program at Minnesota State Mankato has scheduled a series of events throughout the month intended to raise public awareness about sexual violence and to educate communities and individuals about prevention of sexual violence.

In an effort to show community support for Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the Minnesota State Mankato Violence Awareness and Response Program and several other campus, local government and community organizations will sponsor a number of events within Mankato throughout the month of April.

A list of April’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month events is posted online

All the events are free and open to the public. Events that require an RSVP are noted. To get involved or for more information about Sexual Assault Awareness Month at Minnesota State Mankato, contact David Gardner, acting director of gender and sexuality programs, by email at or by phone 507-389-1535.

This year’s national theme for Sexual Assault Awareness Month is “I Ask.” The theme of “I Ask” not only encourages, but empowers everyone, no matter the situation, to ask for consent, to listen, and to accept the responses without pressure or coercion.

The Violence Awareness and Response Program (VARP) provides a safe, supportive space for students and others affiliated with Minnesota State Mankato. The Violence Awareness and Response Program’s mission is to reduce the pervasiveness and effect of sexual violence, domestic/relationship violence and stalking.

April 10: 14th Annual Carol Ortman Perkins Lecture

Stephanie Schriock, the president of EMILY’s List, an organization committed to electing pro-choice Democratic Party women since 1985, will be the featured speaker in Minnesota State Mankato’s 14th annual Carol Ortman Perkins lecture, held Wednesday, April 10 at 7 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom.

Tickets are free and available in the Women’s Center, located in Centennial Student Union, Room 218.

An event preview provided by Minnesota State Mankato’s Women’s Center described Schriock’s background as follows: “Under Schriock’s leadership, EMILY’s List has expanded and tripled its staff and resources, leading to the election of record numbers of women to the U.S. House and Senate and the recruitment and training of thousands of women to run for office. Schriock is also the president of American Women, a research organization affiliated with EMILY’s List which seeks to increase public awareness of the issues impacting women and families. She serves on the board of advisors for Let America Vote, whose mission is to end voter suppression in the U.S.”

Schriock obtained her bachelor’s degree from Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Social and Behavioral Sciences in 1995. While she was a student she served as the speaker and the legislative director of the then Mankato State Student Association. She earned her master’s degree at George Washington University in political management.

The Department of Gender & Women’s Studies launched the Perkins Lectureship campaign in 2003 to commemorate Carol Ortman Perkins’ retirement as chair of the department for over a decade. Perkins’ commitment to and enthusiasm for gender & women’s studies helped make the department an exciting and dynamic place to study systems of oppression both locally and internationally.

The aim of this lectureship is to invite a distinguished feminist scholar/activist to campus each year to visit Minnesota State Mankato and deliver an address to the community. Lecturers are selected based on their contributions to feminist scholarship and their ability to forge connections between theory and practice.

Previous lecturers have included Lilly Ledbetter, Gloria Steinem, Wilma Mankiller, Laverne Cox, Anita Sarkeesian and Melissa Harris-Perry.

For more information about this event or other Minnesota State Mankato Women’s Center events, visit or call the Women’s Center at 507-389-6146.

April 10-11: Good Thunder Reading Series

Minnesota State Mankato will host memoirist and novelist Lidia Yuknavitch (pictured at left) and poet Lorna Pecard (pictured at right) on Wednesday-Thursday, April 10-11 as the seventh and eighth writers who will be on campus for this year’s Good Thunder Reading Series.

All Good Thunder Reading Series events are free and open to the public.

The events open Wednesday, April 10 with Yuknavitch giving a talk, “Mapping the Body: Learning to Translate our Lifestories,” from 7:30-8:30 p.m. at the Arts Center of St. Peter, located at 315 S. Minnesota Ave. in St. Peter.

On Thursday, April 11, Yuknavitch will hold a workshop from 10-11 a.m. at the Emy Frentz Gallery, located at 523 S. 2nd St. in Mankato.

Later Thursday, Yuknavitch will also hold a “Talk on Craft” from 3-4 p.m. at the First Congregational United Church of Christ (150 Stadium Court in Mankato). Events will conclude with Pecard holding a reading of her work from 7:30-8:30 p.m. in the University’s Centennial Student Union, Room 245.

Yuknavitch is this year’s Nadine B. Andreas Visiting Resident in partnership with the Minnesota State Mankato Women’s Center, and Pecard is the recipient of the 2018-19 Nadine B. Andreas Graduate Assistantship.

For more information contact Candace Black at 507-389-2680 or visit

April 11-20: 'The Hunchback of Notre Dame'

Minnesota State Mankato’s Department of Theatre & Dance will open “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” April 11 in the Ted Paul Theatre at the Early Center for the Performing Arts.

Based on the Disney movie and the original book by Victor Hugo, this musical features music by Alan Menken, with lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and book by Peter Parnell.

The musical begins as the bells of Notre Dame sound through the famed cathedral in 15th-century Paris. Quasimodo, the deformed bell-ringer, observes all of Paris reveling in the Feast of Fools. Held captive by his devious caretaker, Dom Claude Frollo, he escapes for the day and joins the boisterous crowd, only to be treated cruelly by all but the beautiful gypsy, Esmeralda.

The production includes a 30-person choir that remains on stage for the duration of the musical, as well as a cast of 21 students and a 12 member orchestra.

“The Hunchback of Notre Dame” runs April 11-13 and April 18-20 at 7:30 p.m. and April 20 at 2 p.m. in the Ted Paul Theatre at the Earley Center for Performing Arts, Minnesota State Mankato.

Tickets are $22 regular; $19 for seniors ages 65 and older, children under 16 and groups of 15 or more; and $15 for Minnesota State Mankato students.

The Box Office is open 4-6 p.m. weekdays in the lobby of the Performing Arts Center, or buy single tickets online at Call the Box Office at 507-389-6661.

April 12: College of Business Annual Research Day

Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Business will hold its annual research day event Friday, April 12 from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the Johnson Alumni Room, located in the Taylor Center.

Recipients of College of Business faculty research awards will give presentations. The event is open to the public. There is no cost, but those wishing to attend are asked to register online here.

The 2019-20 Research Award recipients include College of Business faculty members Kathie Richie, Christine Brown Mahoney, Paul Schumann, Oksana Kim, Byron Pike and Wade Davis.

A complete schedule and more information is available here.

April 18-21: Arrowhead Model United Nations Conference

Minnesota State Mankato's College of Social and Behavioral Sciences is hosting the Arrowhead Model United Nations Conference on campus from Thursday-Sunday, April 18-21. An estimated 250-350 students are expected to participate.

The vision of the conference, according to the conference website, is to inspire young people to be global citizens. The website says the following about the history of the conference: “During the 1970s, faculty colleagues from the upper Midwest of the United States and central Canada were searching for an outlet through which university students could learn more about both the United Nations and the global issues that it addresses.”

Remarks from two featured conference speakers are open to the public. Margo Squire, a former U.S. Department of State official, will speak Friday, April 19 at 6 p.m. about the U.S. Foreign Service. Mark Ritchie, former Minnesota secretary of state, will speak Saturday, April 20 during a banquet that will be held from 6-9:30 p.m. Ritchie will discuss one of the Foreign Policy Association Great Decisions for 2019.

For more information about the conference, contact Abdalla Battah, professor of political science, by phone at 507-389-1019 or by email at

April 22-25: 'Mavericks be the Change'

Minnesota State Mankato's Student Events Team is hosting a series of campus events from April 22-25 to encourage student advocacy on timely issues facing the campus community. The events, held each day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Lincoln Lounge, are open to students, faculty and staff.

Titled “Mavericks be the Change,” the events will challenge students to pledge to make changes on campus and in the greater Mankato community.

Each day will feature a different campus partner who advocates on behalf of the student community. Participants who pledge to volunteer or make a change will receive a free limited edition “Mavericks be the Change” T-shirt with inspirational quotes on the back.

Student Events Team has collaborated with four campus departments to help students be the change each day.

  • Monday, April 22: The Veteran’s Center provide participants a glimpse into the lives of real Maverick veterans through a guided interaction with current Minnesota State Mankato students. Participants will receive a card indicating what to ask veterans after saying, “Thank you for your service.”
  • Tuesday, April 23: The Women’s Center will highlight bystander awareness and encourage students to pledge to volunteer with local charities that advocate for victims of sexual and domestic abuse
  • Wednesday, April 24: Campus Kitchen will be giving students the opportunity to learn about battle of food insecurity and how to provide opportunities to make a difference in food security at Minnesota State Mankato.
  • Thursday, April 25: The Counseling Center will help students learn how to help other students cope with stress and highlight services available through the counseling center.

For more information on this event contact Lydia Jagozinski, speakers chair for the Student Events Team, by email at or by phone at 507-389-6076.

April 27: Elementary Science & Engineering Fair

Nearly 900 students in grades 3 through 6 from more than 100 Minnesota elementary schools have registered approximately 670 projects for the annual elementary division of the Southern Minnesota Regional Science and Engineering Fair, which will be held Saturday, April 27 in Myers Field House on the Minnesota State University, Mankato campus.

The exhibit hall is free and open to the public from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. April 27, and all are welcome to stop in and support the hard work of these future scientists. An award ceremony that begins at 2:30 p.m. in the Taylor Center’s Bresnan Arena is also open to the public.

The Southern Minnesota Regional Science and Engineering Fair is hosted by Minnesota State Mankato’s College of Science, Engineering & Technology, and the fair is intended to foster a passion for exploration and discovery in students from 3rd grade through high school. Participation prepares students for college, allows them to compete for scholarships and introduces them to career opportunities in science and engineering. The middle school and high school science and engineering fair was held Feb. 16.

For more information about any of the science fairs, please call 507-389-2849 or send an email to

Student News

Jacob Peterson, a senior majoring in sport management, will be competing in the Boston Marathon on Monday, April 15. Peterson described his battle with dystonia, a neurological disorder, in a KTOE radio news story.

Two incoming students, Meghan Dykstra from Sharon, Wis., and Claire Buscho from Kilkenny, Minn., were each recently awarded a $20,000 Presidential Scholar Award to attend Minnesota State Mankato. Presidential Scholar Awards are awarded to select new students based on class rank, ACT scores, recommendations, leadership, personal essays and interviews. Students must rank in the top 10 percent of their high school class (or hold a 3.8 GPA at a non-ranking school) and have an ACT composite score of 26 or greater (or rank highest in their high school class) to be considered. These scholarships are renewable for four years.

Matt Wilner, a senior majoring in communication studies, was recently featured in a KEYC TV online news story.

Ana Madai Leyva, a senior majoring in vocal music education, placed second in the Women’s Upper Level Music Theatre Division of the North Central Regional National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) student auditions. She will advance to the preliminary round of the NATS national student auditions. She is accompanied by Ben Marti. Faculty member Stephanie Thorpe from the Department of Music is Leyva's vocal instructor.

Brandi BluArm, Nichole Fennel, Colton Layman and Michelle VanTassel, second-year students in the Master of Athletic Training Program, had their critically appraised topic abstracts/posters accepted for the 2019 Minnesota Athletic Trainers’ Association (MATA) Annual Business Meeting and Clinical Symposium, held this week in Minneapolis. Elizabeth Zook and Brittany Hesse, first-year students in the Master of Athletic Training Program, will each receive MATA professional level scholarships at the symposium.

Ciana Ni Churraoin, a graduate student in sports and performance psychology and a member of the women's club handball team, finished second at a recent handball professional event in San Francisco. An article about the event is available here.

Faculty/Staff News

Mike Hastings, head coach of the Maverick men's hockey team, Hastings has been named as one of 10 finalists for the Spencer Penrose Award as the CCM/AHCA Hockey Division I Coach of the Year. The The award will be presented to the winner at the AHCA Coach of the Year Banquet in Naples, Fla. , on May 1. Hastings led the Mavericks to a 32-8-2 mark in establishing a school record for wins this year en route to claiming the Western Collegiate Hockey Association regular-season and postseason championships.

Amy Brugge, assistant professor in the Department of Human Performance, represented the state of Minnesota at the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) Capitol Hill Day on April 3.  Brugge met with Rep. Pete Stauber and staff members from Sen. Amy Klobuchar & Sen. Tina Smith’s offices regarding the Personal Health Investment Today (PHIT) Act, which would modify how Americans could spend HSA/FSA dollars on physical activity expenses to lower risk of chronic disease.

Gregory T. Wilkins, assistant director of the Centennial Student Union & Student Activities, has a solo exhibition, “Finding Voice,” at the Hennepin County Public Health Gallery in Minneapolis. The show runs from April thru June 2019, opening reception is June 9 at 1-2:30 p.m. The public gallery is within a closed space. To schedule a visit, please reach out to Urban Landreman at

Thad Shunkwiler, an assistant professor in the Department of Health Science, was interviewed for an article about the shortage of mental health professionals in rural Minnesota that was published online March 27 in the Dodge County Independent.

Department News

The Institutional Review Board requires faculty, staff and students to provide proof of training before IRB will review submissions.

The Office of the Provost announced the following upcoming “Sip & Chat” date with Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Marilyn Wells: Wednesday, April 24 from 2-3 p.m. in WH 11 (telepresence room). The sessions allow for informal conversations with the provost. No RSVP is necessary.

The March 29, 2019, 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.

For the latest news on Maverick Athletics, visit

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, April 24. The deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (April 19).

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