5 Things I’ll Miss About MSU

by REED CARR, CSU Public Relations Intern

Memorial Library

There is something mystifying to me about sitting in a library surrounded by mountains stories and philosophies I have no knowledge of. Even more so when it’s pitch black outside, a cup of black coffee in hand, in one of the unoccupied corners of the second floor of the Memorial Library. I spent hours ignoring homework in exchange for hours of being lost between the dusty pages of James Joyce, Ernest Hemmingway, Edgar Allan Poe and countless others. It made studying the next day a rigorous, hurried process, but I feel nighttime in the library is when and where I learned most.

 

The Newsletter

 My final semester at MSU has been my best yet as I’ve worked with some really great people to deliver weekly events and news through the MSU newsletter, inSIDER. I came to MSU as a marketing major and realized my talents laid in writing to the masses, not selling to them. The inSIDER has evolved my writing in a way I didn’t expect and I was able to have a blast with fellow writers and mentors while doing it. If you’re looking for an internship in writing next year, talk to Leonard Koupal in the CSU. He’s the man!

 

The Professors

 Mass media and English department professors at MSU are a large part of the reason I was able to keep a positive attitude with my schooling and my future. While they are the ones that assigned 10-page papers and at times asked class to read an entire book in one day, those hurdles taught the most. They have always been up for a chat about class discussion, travel, food and anything in between.

 

Campus and Changing Seasons

 There’s nothing quite like the beginning of a new school year. As the trees burst into reds and oranges, the MSU campus’ artistic, monumental and memorial decorations give the campus a nostalgic feel. Students sport purple and yellow as Blakeslee Stadium rumbles on the other side of Stadium Rd. Minnesota autumn is second to none, but I suppose the beginning of May isn’t such a bad time of the school year either.

 

The Diversity

 Growing up in Kilkenny—a town of 108 people—and moving to Mankato opened my eyes in so many ways. I met people who have helped me grow academically, spiritually and culturally. I’ve met friends that made class not only knowledgeable but fun. I’ll miss walking through the halls seeing all the friendly faces. No matter what I do after graduation, I’ll always be proud to have been a MSU Maverick.

Renewed Responsibility in Sexual Encounters

by REED CARR, CSU Public Relations Intern

“Affirmative consent,” a policy adopted by Minnesota State College and Universities in February, helps spot the difference between a green light and a yellow light in a sexual encounter.

The Minnesota State Board of Trustees policy change was urged by college students and faculty in an attempt to halt sexual violence on campus.

Laura Schultz, Assistant Director of Violence Awareness & Response Program at Minnesota State, Mankato, explains that the new policy “places the responsibility of making sure that consent is present on the person instigating sex. So instead of someone having to say a verbal “No” for an incident to be considered sexual assault, this policy encourages folks to think about the way that a verbal, enthusiastic, ongoing “Yes” should be present for both parties to feel sure that this is fully consensual.”

Not only are college students required to engage in “Affirmitive Consent” before sex, but faculty and the Board of Trustees are holding themselves to the same standard in an attempt to show the importance of consent.

“This policy is meant to encourage everyone to fully understand how important it is to ensure consent,” Schultz said. “Hopefully policies like this one will make folks think more specifically about what actions they are taking to be sure that each partner is fully agreeing to each step of the way. Hopefully it will increase communication and make clear what’s expected of all who are engaging in any specific sex act.”

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center reported one in five women and one in 16 men are sexually assaulted while in college. This new consensual footing helps define the sometimes blurry lines in an intimate setting.

LGBT Center Anniversary

HELPING STUDENT FIND THEIR VOICE FOR 40 YEARS

by TAYLOR ZENZ, CSU Public Relations Intern

This year is all about traditions and anniversaries. Alongside the University’s 150th and the Centennial Student Unions 50th celebrations, the LGBT Center hosted their 40thanniversary this past week.

Back when it was still Mankato State, the University became the second school in the nation to have a campus-based LGBT Center. In 1977, the “Alternative Lifestyle Center” was found with only a few student volunteers and a graduate assistant as part of their staff.

Now, the landmark LGBT Center has an independent office, a full-time coordinator, Jessica Flatequal, and hundreds of students who visit the Center each week.

One student, Graham Waitt, is especially thankful for the LGBT Center this year. As a nontraditional student who felt lost in school, he joined the LGBT Center and never looked back.

“I would not be who I am today without the people that I met simply by hanging out in the Center,” Graham mentions, “I think the biggest impact was that it helped me find my own voice that I didn’t realize I had. It helped me become a strong advocate and ally for the community that I now call home.”

Like many other students, Graham didn’t find the comfort of the LGBT Center right away. As a freshman on campus, he didn’t feel comfortable enough to go into the Center or to volunteer. When returning to Minnesota State Mankato after taking time off, he knew that he didn’t want to let a second chance pass him by. After meeting a close friend in Residential Life who ultimately invited Waitt to join her in the Center, he found himself visiting frequently and making friends.

“It was one of the best decisions that I ever made in college,” Graham said.

Joining the LGBT Center provides endless opportunities for students. For Graham, it’s given him the opportunity to get out in the community and give back. He’s been able to attend several LGBT conferences around the Midwest and was given chances to be a speaker at peer panels to educate the community on LGBT-specific issues. He also has had the privilege to help with campus Drag Shows and Mankato Pride.

Graham is not only an advocate for the LGBT Center and community, but an advocate for finding your true self.

“That’s what we all want in the end, right?” he stated.

To learn more about the LGBT Center on campus, visit https://www.mnsu.edu/lgbtc.

 

 

“See Us” Draws Attention to the Underrepresented

By BRETT MARSHALL, CSU Public Relations Intern

Students and female athletes made a powerful statement April 16 when they began their “See Us” campaign at Minnesota State Mankato.

“The campaign’s purpose is to spread awareness of the underrepresentation, sexualization and judgements made toward female athletes based on their appearances rather than talented abilities,” said Callie Rohlik, the head of MSU’s campaign.

Rohlik and her group of fellow honors program members, Olivia Thomas, Samuel Oluwadoromi and Mellary Jayathunge, got the idea from Courtney Place, a student-athlete from Augustana University in Sioux Falls, S. D., who started the campaign at her school a few months ago.

“’See Us’ had been getting an increasing recognition from female athletes and supporters throughout southwestern Minnesota and I wanted to aid in her expansion by bringing it to MSU,” Rohlik said. “An MSU softball athlete had served as a rep for her movement and I knew fellow female athletes at Minnesota State would love to join the movement as well.

Rohlik, her group and athletes set up a table in the Centennial Student Union with a bright pink display board with the “See Us” logo surrounding an opening where athletes could pose for a picture, which was then sent to social media with the #SEEUS hashtag.

The campaign focus comes from various injustices female athletes face compared to male athletes. A study done by Cheryl Cooky and Nicole Lavoi that analyzed women’s sports after Title IX found that the media coverage for female athletics was only two percent of all news coverage in 2009.

“That particular statistic was appalling to my group members and myself,” Rohlik said. “We believe there’s no reason female athletics shouldn’t be broadcasted just as often as male sporting events.”

Rohlik expressed that injustice for female athletes doesn’t end with broadcast inequality.

“Another issue lies within the perspectives and comments viewed and made by many throughout the world. These statements regard sexualizing females based on their uniforms or judging their incredible talents through negative statements like, ‘Well she’s really good, but that’s because she’s basically a man. Did you see those quads?’” she said. “These judgmental comments are why we joined Courtney’s movement and what we are trying to place an end to.”

Rohlik says students can show support for the movement by following “See Us” on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and by being active fans at female athletic events.

“Support those that are underrepresented and respect their amazing athletic talents just as one would a male athlete.”

Rohlik, Thomas, Oluwadoromi and Jayathunge are all members of MSU’s Honors Program and were inspired to become activists for “See Us” after going through the “Social Change in the 21st Century” seminar, which is apart of the Honors Program. More information for “See Us” can be found by visiting the movement’s social media pages “See Us Movement.”

Out With the Bottle, in With the Box

By BRETT MARSHALL, CSU Public Relations Intern

Four honors students passionate about creating a healthier environment are encouraging MSU to make a switch from plastic to paper water bottles.

Madison Hoffman, Mackenzie Dockendorf, Anna Hagan and Ugochi Nwachukwu generated the idea in their “Honors Social Change in the 21st Century” class after a shared interest in helping the school become more environmentally friendly.

Hoffman and her classmates did research on plastic water bottles and found that 30 billion plastic bottles are consumed in the United States each year and of those, 80 percent end up in a landfill or the ocean. This has led to major pollution — including a patch of garbage in the Pacific Ocean made up of primarily plastic that is the size of Texas. They also found the MSU’s sustainability plan had no information about reducing plastic waste.

The group decided that boxed water was something that could start to address these issues and help MSU begin reducing its footprint.

“Campus currently has nothing like boxed water,” Hoffman said. “The sustainability plan is gaining traction because of Student Government and green campus organizations who have made some changes, but we are still somewhat saddened by the school’s plan and think that something like this will get more people to notice the environmental impact the university has on the planet.”

The group has created a petition that has already gained support from 225 people. Hoffman said the petition is important because it’s a representation of student voices that can be shown to dining services and Sodexo and kick start the change.

“We want students to get involved with environmental committees and turn this into a snowball effect where people start caring about social and environmental change on this campus,” Hoffman said.

Hoffman said that she and her group have the support of Student Government President-elect, MeMe Cronin, and are meeting with Kari Doffing, Dining Services General Manager, to bring boxed water to campus. Additionally, they have crafted a letter to Sodexo, the catering company in charge of all of MSU’s food services, encouraging them to consider making a switch to boxed water on the campuses they serve.

A few campuses in the U.S., including Michigan State and Hope College, have already implemented boxed water and the feedback has been very positive.

The biggest drawback Hoffman sees for boxed water is the cost. Each box costs 10 cents more than a plastic bottle, which begins to stack up in large quantities. However, she said that she and her group are working with the distributor, Boxed Water Is Better, to bring down the cost with a quantity discount.

She also believes the benefits of boxed water outweigh the additional cost. Boxed water is completely recyclable as 76 percent of the container is made from paper from sustainably managed forests that are continually replanted to make up for the losses. The water is purified through reverse osmosis and ultraviolet filtration, which leads to better hydration and taste.

Boxed water containers also decompose faster than 450 years – the time it takes a plastic bottle to decompose – making them better for the environment should they still end up in landfills.

Boxed Water Is Better, the company that would supply the boxed water to MSU, began in Grand Rapids, Mich. in 2009. Since then, the company has gained traction by being sold in major cities like Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and Atlanta. They’ve received celebrity endorsements and also made their way into large music festivals such as Lollapalooza and Austin City Limits where they’ve sold over 300,000 boxes of water. They donate 1 percent of their sales revenue to environmentally-minded organizations.

Students wanting to support and the sign the petition to bring boxed water to MSU can do so by signing the digital petition on Change.org.

2018 Greek Week Champions Have Been Named

by TIARA JELLUM, Panhellenic Council Vice President of Public Relations and Marketing

Mankato, Minn.— The Fraternity & Sorority Community’s annual Greek Week officially ended Friday at Minnesota State University, Mankato. The theme of this year’s week was “Farewell to the 90s – Cartoon Edition,” and lasted from Monday, April 9-April 13. The sororities and fraternities competed in events to accumulate points for their respective chapters while giving back to the community.

The events included a coin drive, won by Sigma Nu which resulted in more than $250.00 being donated to Habitat for Humanity. A Salvation Army clothing drive was also held. More than 4,000 items of clothing were donated. A popular event, the Cardboard Boat Regatta forced chapters to race boats made only from cardboard and duct tape across the Highland Center Pool was won by Alpha Chi Omega. The much-anticipated lip sync competition was won by the men of Sigma Nu, and the Greek God and Goddess were Ryan Muenchow from Sigma Nu, and Catherine Miller from Sigma Sigma Sigma. The overall winners of Greek Week were Sigma Nu in first place, Alpha Chi Omega in second place and Sigma Sigma Sigma in third place.

Fraternity & Sorority Awards Presented at Annual Banquet

by TIARA JELLUM, Panhellenic Council Vice President of Public Relations and Marketing

Mankato, Minn.— The Fraternity and Sorority Life Banquet was held in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom Sunday April 15 with attendees braving bad weather to make it to campus for the annual event.

Individual and chapter awards, recognizing organizational and individual excellence, and contributions to both the Fraternity & Sorority Community and the Minnesota State Mankato Community were presented as part of the evening’s program.

Highlights of the evening included the recognition of the Marie Bruce Fraternity Man and Sorority Woman of the Year. This award is the highest honor members of the Fraternity & Sorority Community can individually achieve. This year’s honorees were Alex Beck of Phi Delta Theta and Emily Sweeny of Gamma Phi Beta. Beck, a graduating senior majoring in Sport Management served Phi Delta Theta as both President and Recruitment Chairman. He later served the Interfraternity Council as its Vice President of Conduct Review. He worked as an intern with Minnesota State Athletics and will continue at MSU as a graduate student in the Sport Management program.

Sweeny is graduating with a major in Dance and Sport Management. She served both Gamma Phi Beta Vice President and Panhellenic Council President. She plans to attend Mankato YMCA as a sports camp intern.

John and Kristy Buck Leadership Scholarship Matt McDavid, Phi Kappa Psi, Katelind Keating, Alpha Chi Omega

Reichert Family Leadership Scholarship Kole Kleinschmidt, Phi Delta Theta, Austin Hassebroek, Phi Delta Theta

Stephen C. Jensen Scholarship Sam Hovick Phi Delta Theta Wallace Pope, Phi Delta Theta

Awards for the 2017 Calendar Year Award Period Order of Omega Faculty/Staff Member of the Year

Greg Wilkins, Associate Director of Student Activities

Gea Stanger Memorial Woman of Influence Award Thea Rief, Alumna of Sigma Sigma Sigma

Public Relations & Marketing Award Gamma Phi Beta

Scholars of the Year Brennah McCorkell, Alpha Sigma Alpha, Luke Camden, Sigma Chi

Vawracz Award for Community Service Jolene Fadden, Sigma Sigma Sigma

Humanitarian Chapter of the Year Alpha Chi Omega, Phi Delta Theta

Outstanding Alumnus Volunteer Tim Randolph, Phi Kappa Psi

Sorority & Fraternity President of the Year Mariah Stein, Sigma Sigma Sigma, Joe Zrucky, Sigma Chi

Rissa Amen-Reif Award for Advocacy and Awareness Zoe Schaefer, Alpha Chi Omega, Courtney Kranz, Alpha Sigma Alpha

PHC & IFC Executive Board Members of the Year Charlotte Pfingsten, 2017 PHC VP of Recruitment Alex Beck, 2017 IFC VP of Conduct Review

Outstanding New Members Kate Schmit, Sigma Sigma Sigma Joel Rains, Lambda Chi Alpha

Marie Bruce Sorority Woman & Fraternity Man of the Year Emily Sweeny, Gamma Phi Beta Alex Beck, Phi Delta Theta

Brotherhood and Sisterhood Awards Gamma Phi Beta Phi Kappa Psi

Most Improved Chapter Award Sigma Chi

Chapter Achievement Awards Alpha Chi Omega, Alpha Sigma Alpha, Gamma Phi Beta, Sigma Sigma Sigma Lambda Chi Alpha, Phi Delta Theta, Sigma Chi

Chapter of the Year Alpha Chi Omega Phi Delta Theta

2018 Greek Week Winners 1st Place – Sigma Nu 2nd Place – Alpha Chi Omega 3rd Place – Sigma Sigma Sigma

For the prestigious title of Chapter of the Year, each chapter was evaluated on different criteria. The categories include Campus Involvement, Community Service and Philanthropy, Greek Community Involvement, Membership Recruitment and Retention, Risk Management, Scholarship, and Membership Education and Development. This award was given to the Phi Delta Theta and the Alpha Chi Omega.

The Minnesota State University, Mankato, Greek Community has been present on campus for more than 50 years and is comprised of approximately 400 students from six fraternities and four sororities. The Community’s core values are leadership

Introspection and Networking Leads to Career Gold

Career Development Center Helps Find The ‘Perfect Fit’

by REED CARR, CSU Public Relations Intern

Who are you? Why are you here? Where are you headed? Staff at the Minnesota State Career Development Center suggest students begin with these questions when searching for their ideal career path.

Matthew Carlson, Acting Director in the CDC, feels self-knowledge helps students find a career that provides happiness as well as a paycheck.

“’Who am I? Why am I here? Where do I want to go?’ It’s hard to get there if you don’t know where you want to go,” Carlson said. “And the fourth question—’How do I get there?’—is relatively easy if you know the answer to the first three. There are employers, there are jobs, there are qualifications, there is experience you need—there is a match out there. If you want to be a doctor, there is a recipe. If you want to be a chef, there is a recipe.”

In the past, the CDC simply lined students up with a job and hoped that it would work out, but things have changed. It’s all about finding the perfect fit.

“We are more in the developmental side of growing a career. It’s not enough just to get a job—we want you to get the thing that is just incredible,” Carlson said. “Go for the gold, man—plan A. You can have more than one goal, but aim for plan A, whatever that is for you. It may not work out, but you’ll lose nothing by trying.”

‘It’s not enough just to get a job—we want you to get the thing that is just incredible. Go for the gold, man – plan A.’ – Matt Carlson

A large part of finding that “plan A” job comes from collaboration and networking. Rather than hoping for the perfect job to fall from the sky the CDC teaches student to build relationships with prospective employers.

“We are trying to teach people job search skills so they can help themselves and others in the future,” Carlson explained. “If I can teach you how to network and connect with employers, you’ll be able to do it the rest of your life. I could just give you a job and you’ll be happy for a short amount of time, but then down the line when you’re ready for a different job, there won’t be anyone there to help you.”

Everyone knows that a solid resume is a great tool in finding a job—but filling in the white space can seem daunting. The CDC is connecting students with opportunities and experience to make a strong resume.

“The kinds of doors that open with employers are internships, any kind of experiential learning where you maybe take an entry-level position that might open other opportunities,” Carlson explained. “The university itself opens lots of ideas on what you may be able to do, but the employers are the ones financing it. Employers have problems, and they pay people to fix them. The way you fix them is with your skills, knowledge and experience.”

The CDC can help with anything from resumes to job searching to interview preparation. If you need career advice or simply want to bounce your ideas off a trained career counselor, stop by the for a drop-in meeting Monday-Thursday, 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Or schedule an appointment at: https://mavjobs.joinhandshake.com/login

Professional Networking Made Easier With LinkedIn

Career Development Center Offers Help With LinkedIn, Resumes and More

By BRETT MARSHALL, CSU Public Relations Intern

There’s an old saying that goes, “It’s not what you know. It’s who you know.” That statements rings true for a lot of people, but especially college students.

The importance of building connections and networking is vital for the success of young professionals. It can provide an inside route to hard-to-get positions, provide great mentorship opportunities and be a source for professional resources.

A great way for students to start building their professional network started is getting a LinkedIn account.

“LinkedIn is a powerful way to professionally network with recruiters and employers,” Karina Clennon, Assistant Director for the Career Development Center at Minnesota State, Mankato said. “Students can apply for positions, stay connected with faculty after graduation and find where alum are working.”

But just having a LinkedIn isn’t enough. Clennon says it’s important to find ways to make it stand out to separate yourself from other students and job-seekers. She offered a few tips to students looking to better their profiles.

“Include key words for positions you are applying to in your headline. Be sure to ask faculty and supervisors to write you a recommendation on LinkedIn, include all of your skills and keep your profile up to date,” she said.

‘Include key words for positions you are applying to in your headline. Be sure to ask faculty and supervisors to write you a recommendation on LinkedIn, include all of your skills and keep your profile up to date.’ – Karina Clennon

In addition, Clennon said students need to make sure they have a professional picture displayed, not a selfie or cropped picture. She also recommended that students should include all information they would have on a resume as well as other professional experiences that may not fit on a resume.

Clennon also stressed the importance of using multiple resources and not being entirely reliant on LinkedIn during the job search.

“LinkedIn is a tool. It’s really important to leverage all of your resources when you are on the job search. Make sure you’re talking to your advisors and mentors for more information about careers,” she said. “Keep up to date with your online presence, too, because employers do take that into consideration when making hiring decisions.”

The CDC works closely with the Colleges of Allied Health and Nursing; Business; and Science, Engineering and Technology by providing programs and activities to students within those colleges. Students not in those colleges can visit the Career Development Center any time during the school day to get help creating a LinkedIn profile, feedback on resumes and cover letters and to seek career advice.

Clennon is a graduate of MSU with a Doctorate of Education in Education and Supervision as well as a Master of Science in Counseling and Student Personnel: College Student Affairs. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies from Bethany Lutheran College in Mankato.

The Career Development Center is located on the second level of Wigley Administration building and is open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information about the CDC or to schedule an appointment, visit www.mnsu.edu/cdc.

 

One Team = 80 Events

Student Events Team Builds Memories and Traditions

by TAYLOR ZENZ, CSU Public Relations Intern

Last years Special Events Chair, Bailey Hofmeister will lead the Student Events Team as the 2018-19 President. The team’s busy year starts with Welcome Week, Aug. 23-26, with a host of events for greeting new Mavericks to campus.

Who creates events such as Kato Ninja Warrior and the fall Foam Party? Who organizes next week’s Eric Paslay concert? Who plans Homecoming? Who schedules Stomper’s Cinema? Who brings eagles, exotic animals and live reindeer to campus? Which group is leading the way in creating memories and traditions for fellow Mavericks.

Of course, if you answer Students Events Team to all of those questions (and more) you would be correct.

Dedicated to a mission of producing “fun, interactive, educational events where students make lifelong memories and celebrate their Maverick pride,” the Student Events Team is led by a group of 12 students responsible for mobilizing student volunteers for more 80 events a year.

Among the biggest events, Homecoming is already in the works with a week of activities planned Sept 24-29 to get students and alumni into the Maverick spirit. This year’s team will also be working with the University’s Sesquicentennial Committee as the expanded Homecoming Parade moves to downtown Mankato

Another major undertaking is concert planning as the team seeks to find an artist that is both appealing and affordable. Ongoing activities include Stomper’s Cinema. A recent student survey showed free movies are the second most popular activity (behind career fairs) in the CSU

With Kato Ninja Warrior and the Eric Paslay Concert rounding out this year’s Student Events Team events, the team will be back in force starting with Welcome Week, Aug. 23-26, where activities will include Club Maverick and Cosmic Bingo.

During the academic year, students can learn and share event ideas during weekly Tuesdays at 4 sessions by the Student Events Team. Students interested in joining the Student Events Team must fill out an application and go through an interview process with a panel that includes past members and Student Activities staff.

The 2018-19 Student Events Team will be led by returning member Bailey Hofmeister, President. Other members of the team include Spirit & Traditions – Brandon Weideman; Homecoming Competition – Kylie Morton; Homecoming Promotions – Ella May; Concert Company – Alex Schauer; Stomper’s Cinema – Alex Fry; Speakers – Lydia Jagodzinski; Mavericks After Dark – Lucas Arndt; Special Events – Miranda Magnuson; Public Relations & Social Media – Abuzar Iqbal; Marketing – Brienna Schleusner; and Business Manager – Arnavee Maltare. Advisor for the Student Events Team is Bill Tourville, Student Activities assistant director of campus programs.

Newly elected Mavericks After Dark chair, Lucas Arndt, says that he can’t wait to build relationships with the new team and is excited to bring unique and fun events to campus.

“We each bring something different to the table, and I think we will be able to have well thought-through ideas,” he said. “A lot of us have been involved with the team before and understand the mission that Student Events Team brings to campus.”

If you have any suggestions or want to get involved with Student Events Team, visit https://www.mnsu.edu/studenteventsteam/