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In This Issue

OERG (Organizational Effectiveness Research Group)

Expansion at Edina

Small Business Development Center

Operation Southern Sweep

Division Reorganization – Business Model

"Connecting knowledge
and the real world."

OERG
(Organizational Effectiveness Research Group)

Professor Dan Sachau and his colleagues have developed exactly the type of model the Strategic Business, Education and Regional Partnerships division craves. Graduate students in the Industrial/Organizational Psychology Master's Program spend the fall OERG Logoworking on research projects for Atrain GMBH, a leadership development consulting practice in Bamberg Germany. In the spring, faculty and students travel to Germany to present the results of the studies. Josh Wittrock, a graduate of Minnesota State University, Mankato was hired by Atrain three years ago, and he has cultivated the relationship between Atrain, Scitrain (its Ohio-based sister company), and Minnesota State, Mankato. The collaboration allows students access to domestic and international internships, consulting opportunities, full-time jobs and research projects.

Opportunities like those Professor Sachau helps to cultivate, allow Minnesota State, Mankato students experiences atypical of graduate programs of similar in nature and makeup. These unique real-world learning lab experiences prepare the University graduates to immediately make an impact on the economy following or even before graduation. Atrain can be found at www.atrain.de and Scitrain can be found at www.scitrain.com.

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Expansion at the Edina location
Candace Raskin - Director of Site Management
and Expansion at Edina

In the last couple of years, Minnesota State University, Mankato has expanded its reach to the Twin Cities area. In a variety of ways, the University is meeting the needs of non-traditional graduate and undergraduate students. They are doing it more than 80 miles away from the campus in Mankato. The Edina site, recently expanded, now serves more than 2,000 students. Many are part-time and/or are seeking graduate degrees through a blend of online and hybrid courses. The needs of the non-traditional Edina Photostudent are different than those of the on-campus student. Most of the students at the Edina location work 40 hours per week. Courses are offered in the evenings and on weekends. The trick is to maximize the space. Raskin says, “we are getting much better as the demand for classes increases—this summer should be a good example.”

Outside of traditional coursework, the Edina site offers something particularly interesting for newly hired Principals and Superintendents. The Institute for Engaged Principal Leadership is a program aimed at developing early career principals in hopes of making such individuals transformational leaders. This two-year program begins this fall and will produce the first cohort in 2014.

Additionally, the Edina site continues to partner with two-year colleges in the metro area, producing 2 + 2 curriculums housed entirely at the two-year college locations. This allows students to plan to complete their degree while also not requiring them to move. Something is sure—the Edina site will only continue to grow.

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Small Business
Development Center

SBDC LogoMike Nolan, Director of the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) housed at Minnesota State University, Mankato produces results—results that may be hard to repeat.

Nolan and his team outperformed many of the goals set forth for 2011.

Criteria Goal Attained % Complete
Clients Served 265 373 140%
Consulting Hours 2500 3526 141%
New Business Start-Ups 13 25 192%
Estimated Jobs Created 385 523 136%
Raising Investment Capital $7,500,000 $13,300,000 177%

The SBDC’s ability to partner has proved worthwhile in the academic colleges as partnering with the College of Extended Learning provided 68 seminars/workshops and 23 Legal Clinics for Entrepreneurs. Nolan’s work has allowed MBA students access to consulting opportunities (two of his consultants are Minnesota State, Mankato MBA students). Additionally, undergraduates at Minnesota State, Mankato have access to one-on-one consulting on business plans and research projects. The addition of this center on campus has truly provided the range of opportunities students and the surrounding business community both seek and need. Recently, the SBDC launched a new website which can be found at www.myminnesotabusiness.com. Small Business - BIG Ideas…Real World Thinking.

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Operation Southern Sweep
a Visit with Ann Goebel

As the Director of Strategic Partnerships, Ann Goebel oversees the outreach arm of the division. The past few months have been spent, as Ann describes, “visiting communities in southern Minnesota, listening, and creating responses the Minnesota State University, Mankato can provide.” The sweep has stopped at the communities of Fairmont, Albert Lea, Owatonna, New Prague OSS Logoand will be visiting Faribault soon. Blue Earth, Frost, Edgerton, Waseca and New Ulm have also shown interest and Strategic Partnerships is looking to expand with more partners in those communities.

The focus of the Southern Sweep, the Wheelhouse, hits a variety of mediums: internship & co-op opportunities, applied projects, diversity opportunities, online options, degree completion, and developing more articulation with our two-year partners, to name a few. “Not everything happens under the roof at Mankato and Edina,” says Goebel. She says the goal of this project is “to be recognized as more of a community asset in our southern Minnesota region for the purpose of economic growth.” Students of Minnesota State, Mankato see these opportunities as a means to strengthen the transition from college to the working economy. The key outcome is to find the best way to build a consistent relationship with each community on a monthly or quarterly basis.

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Division Reorganization – Business Model
Vice President Bob Hoffman

The goal of the division reorganization is to grow enrollment by reaching new audiences. As Dr. Hoffman says, we need to "skate to where the puck is going." Minnesota State University, Mankato truly is Bob Hoffman Photopreparing to be the partner of choice for southern Minnesota. And the reorganization allows the division to move quicker to connect the tremendous value embedded in the University to the changing needs of tomorrow’s economy. The value comes in a myriad of forms, although technology, faculty research, information exchange with interdisciplinary depth, entrepreneurial opportunities, new jobs, and talent development top the list.

With the College of Extended Learning, the University can continue to increase the focus on the professional development of a skilled workforce, including both the continued development of the incumbent workforce and the increased development of our traditional learners. Additionally, both the certificate driven programs and the not-for-credit programs will be grouped independently to allow further flexibility and a greater intensity within the division. Quality Matters, an initiative to design a rubric for online courses, is also included with Strategic Partnerships, reinforcing the emphasis on creating an environment of excellence for distance and online learners.

Dr. Hoffman's team has established a set of guiding principles which position the division to be agile, competitive, adaptive, and responsive allowing the University to educate—both creating and disseminating knowledge. We are excited to see where the puck goes next—because Minnesota State University, Mankato will be there.

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Strategic Business, Education and Regional Partnerships
Minnesota State University, Mankato
329 Wigley Administration Center
Mankato, MN 56001