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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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November 20, 2019 Campus Newsletter

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Celebrating 1 Million Downloads

Cornerstone, a collection of scholarly and creative works at Minnesota State University, Mankato, hit a milestone Friday, Nov. 15, as the number of downloaded works crossed the one million mark.

Cornerstone showcases the intellectual output of Minnesota State Mankato faculty, staff and students by preserving their works digitally and presenting them to the world in an easy-to-find format.

With over 5,000 works, Cornerstone allows people to view a variety of items such as reports, presentations, papers, theses and dissertations, video, books and articles from several open access journals written by the University's students, faculty and staff.

When each work added to Cornerstone is downloaded or viewed, metrics in the system keep track of the number of downloads and use those numbers to generate readership maps like the one below showing the overall reach of works to a global audience.

Visitors to Cornerstone come from over 200 countries, with the majority coming from the United States, the Philippines, the United Kingdom, India, Canada and Australia, and from a variety of institutions – including other universities, state governments and U.S. government organizations.

“Reaching the one million mark in downloads has truly been a milestone for us,” says Associate Professor Heidi Southworth, digital initiatives librarian and Cornerstone’s manager. “Cornerstone has been operating since 2014 and the growth and reach of the research and creative works by our students, faculty and staff has been amazing. People worldwide can share, discuss and build upon the hard work that happens at all levels of our University. Cornerstone is about celebrating and disseminating the work that we do and reaching one million downloads is just a good start! I want to see it grow even more. The more we have in Cornerstone, the closer we will be to two million downloads!”

Interim Dean of Library and Learning Chris Corley says, “Knowledge works best when it is freely available for others to learn from, to debate, and to build upon. Cornerstone is at the cutting edge of open access knowledge and information sharing. This tool has increased access to the intellectual work of our faculty, staff and students. Our ideas, insights, and solutions are routinely circulating across the globe. I’m proud of the work our Library Services faculty and staff, and particularly Professor Southworth, have done to make this technological tool available for use on our campus.”

The work that recorded the one millionth download was Steve Jobs’ use of Ethos for Persuasive Success in His 2005 Stanford Commencement Address by Keith Bistodeau (from Ohio University) in volume 41 of the 2014/2015 issue of the Communication and Theater Association of Minnesota Journal (CTAMJ), which is one of three open access journals found in Cornerstone.

For more information on Cornerstone, please contact Heidi Southworth by email at or by phone at 507-389-5066.

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. 22 to Dec. 16.

Donations will also be accepted Dec. 16 at the president's 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, MH 240
  • Julie Dornack, ML 3104
  • Bonnie Hanson, MF 124
  • Vicki Hanson, WA 238
  • Katie Roeder, WA 132
  • Katie VanErdewyk, TN 131
  • Helen Walters, WC 358

Hunger & Homelessness Awareness Week

Minnesota State University, Mankato’s Community Engagement Office and University students involved in Fraternity and Sorority Life are recognizing national Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week by holding several campus events from Nov. 18-22.

Monday through Friday food collection
The University’s Fraternity and Sorority Life organizations are hosting a food drive all week to benefit the Campus Kitchen at Minnesota State Mankato. Donations may be made at food collection boxes placed throughout the campus.

Film “The Public” to be shown Wednesday, Nov. 20 at 7 p.m., Taylor Center, Room 080
The University’s Community Engagement Office is hosting a free public showing of “The Public.” The film focuses on a group of people who are homeless in the greater Cincinnati area. The group conducts an act of civil disobedience by moving into a local library to escape the harsh winter. Reflection questions will be available to help viewers consider the many questions that arise during the movie.

Overnight Friday, Nov. 22 to Saturday, Nov. 23: Annual Homelessness Awareness Sleep-Out
The University’s Community Engagement Office is holding its annual “Homelessness Awareness Sleep-Out” beginning at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22. This event is open to Minnesota State Mankato students interested in learning more about homelessness and provides an opportunity to participate in a brief homelessness experience.

Several speakers from the Mankato community will discuss their experiences in working with people who are homeless. Students who attend this event will also enact in several scenarios intended to replicate some of the experiences of people who are homeless.

For more information, contact Karen Anderson, assistant director for community engagement in the Community Engagement Office, 507-389-5789 or

IT Solutions Announcements

* Apple One-Dale Sale at Campus Computer Store

The Campus Computer Store will hold its semi-annual faculty and staff appreciation event on Friday, Nov. 22.

During this one-day event, Minnesota State Mankato faculty and staff can get the newest Apple® products at the lowest prices available this semester.

To learn more, click here.

* MediaSpace & LinkedIn Learning Re-linking Drop-ins

IT Solutions is providing hands-on support for faculty who would like to look through their media and make sure that updated videos are properly linked in their D2L Courses.

  • No appointment needed. Stop in anytime during the scheduled hours.
  • See the schedule.
  • Memorial Library 88 & 94 - Center for Excellence and Innovation

Nov. 20: International Relations Forum

Four Minnesota State University, Mankato faculty members will discuss current events in an international relations forum Wednesday, Nov. 20 from 4-6 p.m. in the University’s Centennial Student Union, Room 245.

The event is free and open to the public.

The faculty panelists and the topics they will discuss include:

  • Tom Inglot, professor, Department of Government, “U.S. Foreign Policy toward Russia and Ukraine under the Trump Administration”
  • Jameel Haque, assistant professor, Department of History, “Seeds of Conflict: British Imperial Legacies in Palestine, Kashmir and Sudan”
  • Lee Tesdell, professor, Department of English, “A History Lesson from Palestine”
  • Abdalla Battah, associate professor, Department of Government, “Arab Seasons of Change: Revolution & Counter-revolution”

For more information, contact Battah by email at or by phone at 507-389-1019.

Nov. 20: Can Jam Event

Inspired by National Hunger & Homelessness Awareness week (Nov. 16-24), students in Dale Haefner’s music management and concert production class at Minnesota State Mankato are sponsoring a food donation drive at Pub 500 (located at 500 South Front St., Mankato).

The Can Jam event will be held Wednesday, Nov. 20 from 7:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Donations of non-perishable food items will support the Echo Food Shelf. Those donating food items will receive raffle tickets which will be drawn throughout the evening for free prizes. Musical entertainment will be provided throughout the evening by the Department of Music’s contemporary combos.

Those donating non-perishable food items will receive one raffle ticket per food item. Raffle drawings will take place throughout the night and raffle winners must be present to win. A grand prize drawing will be held at 10 p.m.

The Can Jam event is free and open to the public, and all ages are encouraged to attend. Attendees are urged, but not required, to donate food items in support of National Hunger Awareness week.

For more information about the event, contact Dale Haefner at the Performance Series office, 507-389-5549, or Pub 500 at 507-625-6500.

Nov. 21: University Jazz Big Bands

Minnesota State Mankato's Department of Music will host a performance of the University jazz bands Thursday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. in the 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.

Concert admission is $9 for general admission and $7 for K-12 students and children. University students are admitted free with a valid MavCARD. 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. 24: University Concert Wind Ensemble in Concert

Minnesota State Mankato's concert wind ensemble members are holding a performance Sunday, Nov. 24 at 3 p.m. 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 the audience on a musical journey around the world.

Concert admission is $9 for general admission and $7 for K-12 students and children. University students are admitted free with a valid MavCARD. 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. 25-Dec. 6: Senior Student Art Exhibit

Senior Department of Art students at Minnesota State Mankato are displaying their art on campus at Conkling Gallery in two separate fall semester shows. The first show was from Monday, Nov. 11 through Tuesday, Nov. 19. The second opens Monday, Nov. 25 and continues through Friday, Dec. 6.

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.

An opening reception for the second show wil be held Monday, Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. in Conkling Gallery.

Students displaying their art in the second show include Andy Anderson, Cheyenna Bjorklund, Savannah Davila, Katelyn Dick, Emily Gehler, Samantha Kary, Erika Sheflet and Elyse White.

Student News

John Shrestha, Minnesota State Mankato Honors student, placed third in the City of Mankato’s annual photo contest. Shrestha’s photo, titled “Diversity of Mankato,” was one of over 200 contest entries focused on highlighting quality of life and various community spaces in Mankato. His photo will be featured on a rotating basis on the City of Mankato’s home page and online calendar. The photo will also be on public display within a city building and may be used in other City of Mankato media.

Six Minnesota State Mankato students were selected to present their research during the 54th annual National Collegiate Honors Council conference in New Orleans from Nov. 6-10. Melanie Bengtson and Samantha King presented “Art Therapy and Autism Spectrum Disorders.” Bethany Haus and Erin Zuiker presented “Connective Tissue Infiltration into Three-Dimensional Sintered Cobalt Chrome Alloy.” Emily Schiltz and Sarah Wall presented “The Influence of Social Media on College Students.” The NCHC conference highlights student and faculty research presentations from across the nation and provides training and development for honors program administrators. This year’s theme explored how honors faculty and students can address a growing lack of creative and innovative qualities in faculty curriculum and student experiences in the U.S. Honors Program Co-Director Ginny Walters was part of several panels and discussions during the NCHC conference. Honors Program Director Leah White also attended the conference.

Thirteen students from a Minnesota State Mankato agroecology class taught by faculty member Christopher Ruhland toured Guardian Energy in Janesville on Oct. 31 to learn about locally produced biofuel production. It was the second time in October that students from the University have toured Guardian Energy. On Oct. 3, students from the university’s biological engineering analysis class visited the facility. The tour was organized by the Minnesota Bio-Fuels Association (MN Biofuels) and sponsored by Novozymes, a global microbe and enzyme provider, and supporter of Minnesota’s ethanol industry. Guardian Energy is the largest ethanol plant in Minnesota and produces 150 million gallons of ethanol a year. Both Guardian Energy and Novozymes are members of MN Biofuels.

Faculty/Staff News

Thad Shunkwiler, assistant professor in the Department of Health Science, was interviewed by KEYC TV on Nov. 5 to discuss a recent survey that shows students are increasingly concerned with mental health.

Karla Lassonde and Emily Stark, faculty members in the Department of Psychology, recently announced the launch of a new resource, Communicating Psychological Science. It aims to address a growing need as well as a current area of focus within the discipline of psychology. The website features student and faculty contributions about research in psychology, myth busting, unique classroom projects and broad aspects of science communication, with a goal of forming a network of instructors, researchers and others focused on improving communication skills around psychological science. Lassonde and Stark received a grant in 2018 from the Association for Psychological Science via its teaching fund to cover the costs of site development, and partnered with the company ScienceSites to design the website and organize initial content.

Department News

RASP Spotlight: The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs published its list of faculty and staff who made external funding submissions and received awards during the month of October. More information is available on the RASP website.

A KEYC TV commercial recently featured University Dining Services at Minnesota State University, Mankato. The commercial highlights the MRCI employees that work within the University Dining Center.

The Nov. 8, 2019 edition of the Community Engagement newsletter is now available. An email subscription sign-up link is available here.

Tidbits from the Institutional Review Board (IRB): Contact or call 507-389-5102 with IRB-related questions. IRB has posted useful information at this link.

Starting in Fall 2020, the Institutional Review Board (IRB) at Minnesota State University, Mankato will require all researchers to complete some training before IRB will review submissions. More information regarding the trainings is available here.

A Nov. 13 collaborative exercise for students in Minnesota State Mankato's Master of Science in Athletic Training program and South Central College's Emergency Medical Services program received media coverage in Mankato Free Press and KEYC TV news stories.

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 Joe Tougas at 507-389-1369 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. 4. The deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (Nov. 29).

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