Recent News from Campuses

Tommie Traditions: Senior Class Gift

University of St. Thomas Campus News - Mon, 04/07/2014 - 11:42am

A tradition since 1926

Continuing a legacy that began with the gift of the south campus Grotto in 1926, this year’s senior class has voted to give back to the University of St. Thomas by supporting a middle-income scholarship for future students.

Students who support the senior class gift will be recognized at commencement, where the Class of 2014 Scholarship will be presented to President Julie Sullivan by Student Legacy President Kirsten Larson and Vice President Matt Rippentrop.

“I think that a lot of people either experience this themselves, not meeting all of the financial aid requirements, or have friends who do,” Larson said.

The gift follows the fairly new tradition of a giving back in the form of an endowed scholarship, established in 2010.

“It resonates with a lot of students. I think everyone understands the importance of financial aid, especially today, and a scholarship makes such a difference to so many students,” said Jonna Schnettler, Development staff liaison to the Senior Class Gift Committee.

Past scholarships have included those created to support juniors and seniors involved in extracurricular or volunteer activities on campus (class of 2013), seniors experiencing unexpected financial hardship (class of 2012) and students interested in taking service trips through VISION (class of 2010).

The class of 2014 voted among three scholarship options last fall agreed upon by the Senior Class Gift Committee, a group of 63 current members, which is open to all seniors who want to help plan the gift.

Student Legacy is the parent organization of the committee, which is split into sub-committees of public relations, special events and fundraising, and welcomes participants from all corners of campus.

According to Schnettler, because there were 300 new endowed scholarships established within the Opening Doors capital campaign, this group of seniors was especially interested in identifying which scholarships were really needed at St. Thomas.

For a scholarship to be endowed at St. Thomas, it must reach $50,000. St. Thomas has established the class of 2014 scholarship for seniors to contribute this year and continue supporting in the future until it reaches the endowed level.

The Old Guard also has created a matching program that will donate $3,000 for every 10 percent participation of the senior class.

There is no hard deadline for the donation, but students who want to have their names included on the donor sheet at commencement need to give by May 13.

Students who give also will be recognized with a special lapel pin – a new feature of the senior class gift.

Senior Class Gift Committee member Erin Windschitl said the idea of recognition via pin parallels that of honors cords and will be more meaningful than perks seniors have received for giving in the past, such as tumblers or sunglasses.

The pin was designed by the Senior Class Gift Committee and the Student Legacy executive board.

For the first time in the history of the gift, the Senior Class Gift Committee will launch a campaign April 8 to encourage students to donate. Seniors can donate online. The committee also has created a video that will be shown in the Anderson Student Center atrium and Scooter’s on launch day during convocation hour. The video features senior students and was made by junior Mariann Kukielka.

Larson encourages seniors to come “because it’s something new we’re doing, kind of to excite students about the gift and the scholarship and raise awareness about it. A lot of people helped make the video so I’m really excited for all of campus to see it.”

The Senior Class Gift Committee also will be present at “It Takes More Than Tuition Day” on the plaza April 10, Grad Fest on April 23 and 24, and the senior picnic on April 29. Students will be able to make a donation via cash, credit card or check and pick up their lapel pin if they gave online.

St. Thomas also will partake in a challenge with Gustavus Adolphus College for senior class participation.

The committee’s goal for the senior class is to break the class of 2010’s record of 65 percent participation.

“Our overall goal is to have 100 percent participation from the senior class,” Schnettler said. “Our goal is participation and not a monetary amount, and that’s because … we want everyone to be involved and feel comfortable in making a gift of any size.”

According to Schnettler, Student Legacy’s purpose is “to educate students about the importance of philanthropy and giving back through time, talent and treasure, [and] talk to students on campus while they’re here about being leaders in the community and after they leave.”

Larson and Windschitl have been members of Student Legacy since their sophomore years and are both on the special events sub-committee of the Senior Class Gift Committee. Larson has been inspired by alumni like George Moskalik, who has given to the university every year since his graduation in 1939.

“It’s important to remember that sometimes the only reason students are able to go here is because of the generosity of the alumni who have come before us, and while tuition is expensive, we need to continue to give back to the students who are here and the students who are to come,” Larson said.

This year’s graduating class is the largest in the history of the university, which means it will be more difficult to achieve higher participation, but there is opportunity for more giving.

“[The class of 2014] has really stepped up and they’re leaders on campus. … This year has been remarkable in that it’s a lot of firsts for St. Thomas with this group. Hopefully it will make a difference and we’ll see great participation from the senior class,” Schnettler said.

Media Alert—The Auction at MCAD

MCAD News - Mon, 04/07/2014 - 10:50am

PDF version of the Press Release

Minneapolis, MN—The Auction at MCAD, slated for Friday, May 9, will feature select works from 39 alumni, faculty, and friends of the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD). Proceeds from the event benefit the MCAD Scholarship Fund.

Mon, 2014-04-07 - Tue, 2015-04-07

read more

CSP Students Take Top Honors at Lutheran Extension Fund Marketing Competition

Concordia University Campus News - Mon, 04/07/2014 - 8:02am

A team of four marketing students under the leadership of Dr. Nancy Harrower won top honors for their presentation at the third annual National Student Marketing Competition, sponsored by the Lutheran Extension Fund, April 4 in St. Louis. Winning the honor from Concordia University, St. Paul were seniors Kayla Koenecke, Amanda Konetchy, Matt Buhmann, and Thomas Streed, who spent the entire semester working on their campaign and presentation.

The competition asked students to develop a cooperative marketing plan involving a partnership between LCEF and LCMS elementary and secondary schools, individually and collectively. CSP’s winning campaign was centered on the idea of “Achieve individual growth in a Christ-focused community,” with the tag line, “Students Cherished. Individuals Grown.” Judges were impressed the team’s research, analysis, campaign and professional presentation.

Eight schools representing the Concordia University System competed at the event. A team from Concordia-Irvine placed second while a team from Concordia-Ann Arbor took third.

HUSC Collaborates with Dining Services for Piper Grill Delivery

Hamline University Campus News - Mon, 04/07/2014 - 12:00am
Hamline Undergraduate Student Congress and Dining Services test success of a Piper Grill delivery service for students.

Rasmussen &#8217;98 Wins Minnesota Book Award for <i>Black Aperture</i>

Gustavus Campus News - Sun, 04/06/2014 - 12:59pm

Matt Rasmussen ’98

The awards and recognition keep pouring in for Gustavus professor and alumnus Matt Rasmussen ’98 and his debut collection of poems titled Black Aperture. Rasmussen, who was named a finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry in the fall of 2013, won the Minnesota Book Award in the same category at the Minnesota Book Awards Gala on Saturday, April 5 at the St. Paul Union Depot.

Rasmussen was one of four finalists for this year’s award in poetry. The other three finalists included The First Flag by Sarah Cox, It Becomes You by Dobby Gibson, and Slip by Cullen Bailey Burns.

The following is a story that appeared on the Gustavus website in September when Rasmussen was named to the National Book Award Longlist for Poetry:

Visiting Professor of English and 1998 Gustavus Adolphus College graduate Matt Rasmussen has been named to the 2013 National Book Award Longlist for Poetry for his debut collection of poems titled Black Aperture. The list of 10 books was announced on Tuesday, Sept, 17 by the National Book Foundation. Finalists will be announced on Oct. 16 and a winner will be announced at the National Book Award Ceremony and Benefit Dinner on Nov. 20.

The National Book Award is one of the nation’s most prestigious literary prizes and has a stellar record of identifying and rewarding quality writing. In 1950, William Carlos Williams was the first winner in Poetry, and the following year William Faulkner was honored in Fiction. The National Book Foundation’s mission is to celebrate the best of American literature, to expand its audience, and to enhance the cultural value of good writing in America.

“It’s an enormous honor to have my book named to the Longlist for the National Book Award for Poetry,” Rasmussen said. “I just learned about it today, so I’m still processing it a little, but it’s humbling to be named among so many amazing poets and books.”

Black Aperture has already received considerable accolades as it was the winner of the 2012 Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets. In the collection of poems, Rasmussen faces the tragedy of his brother’s suicide, refusing to focus on the expected pathos, blurring the edge between grief and humor.

“It’s largely about my brother’s suicide, so it’s definitely dark, but I’d like to think it has moments of humor as well,” Rasmussen said. “People have described it as “dream-like” or “surreal.” The book explores grief, but not in a chronicled way. It’s more a fragmented exploration of my experiences, emotions, and imaginings.”

Black Aperture was a project that was 10 years in the making as several of the poems included were written while Rasmussen was enrolled in graduate school at Emerson College in Boston, Mass.

“I worked on it for 10 years, but it wasn’t like I was constantly working on it, or even knew that it was a book,” Rasmussen said. “I just wrote more and more poems and kept adding them to the manuscript while taking others out. It had many different titles and structures throughout those years, but it really took its final shape after Jane Hirshfield helped me immensely with the editing and ordering of it.”

One poem in the collection that Rasmussen feels stands out is titled “Reverse Suicide”, as Rasmussen imagines what would happen if his brother’s suicide were played backwards, like a film roll played in reverse.

“It begins with the guy our Dad sold my brother’s car to coming back to get his money and leaving the car. It ends with my brother and I pouring bags of leaves on the lawn and waiting for them to “leap onto the bare branches,” Rasmussen said. “The poem tries to explore that familiar and oxymoronic emotion we all feel of wanting to reverse time when someone we love passes away. It’s a completely irrational desire and yet completely natural.”

Rasmussen came to Gustavus in the fall of 1994 from International Falls with the intention of majoring in computer science and playing on the men’s hockey team. He played two years of hockey and ended up switching his major to English.

“The English Department at Gustavus made me into a poet. I was already reading and writing poetry before I came to Gustavus, but I had never had a creative writing class before,” Rasmussen said. “My English professors were amazing, including Florence Amamoto, Don Scheese, John Rezmerski, Deborah Downs-Miers, Claude Brew, and Claus Buechman.”

Rasmussen says that the two professors who influenced him the most were current Minnesota Poet Laureate Joyce Sutphen and Phil Bryant – both of whom are currently faculty members at the College.

“They’re two of the most approachable and caring teachers I’ve ever had. Basically, I wanted to be like them,” Rasmussen said. “Not only did they help shape me as a poet when I was at Gustavus, but I kept in touch with them afterwards and they were always there for me when I needed a recommendation or just a pat on the back.”

Rasmussen also said that Classics professor Will Freiert – his first term seminar professor – had a profound impact on him when he told Rasmussen and other first-year students that they should seek to learn things that they want to learn. “That instilled in me the courage to pursue my love of poetry,” Rasmussen said.

Rasmussen, Sutphen and Bryant are of course colleagues now that Rasmussen has been serving as a visiting professor in the College’s English Department. He is currently teaching a section of Introduction to Creative Writing and has also taught classes such as World Literature II, Appreciating Literature, and Reading the World: The World at the Margin during his time at Gustavus.

While Black Aperture is a fairly new publication, having been published in 2012 by LSU Press, Rasmussen is busy with future projects.

“I’m writing new poems. I don’t have a large project in mind, but I’m not really too concerned about that. I’m hoping my next book finds its form as I continue to write more and more poems,” he said. “I have a three-year-old daughter, Lydia, who loves books and it seems like I’ve been reading children’s books more than anything else. It seems natural that I’ve started writing a children’s book. It’s my first try, so we’ll see how it goes.

Rasmussen’s poetry has been published in Gulf CoastCimarron ReviewH_NGM_NWater ̴ Stone ReviewNew York QuarterlyPaper Darts, and at He’s received awards, grants, and residencies from The Bush Foundation, The McKnight Foundation, The Minnesota State Arts Board, Jerome Foundation, Intermedia Arts, The Anderson Center in Red Wing, Minn., and The Corporation of Yaddo. He is a 2014 Pushcart Prize winner and a former Peace Corps volunteer.  More information about him and his work can be found online at


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas

Summer Courses at Hamline

Hamline University Campus News - Sun, 04/06/2014 - 12:00am
Undergraduate and graduate students are encouraged to make their summer count at Hamline. More than 80 classes will be offered this summer, allowing students to get into classes that they haven't had time to fit in their schedule or get ahead and graduate early.

University addresses changing healthcare landscape at upcoming education summit

St. Kate's Campus News - Fri, 04/04/2014 - 2:52pm
The Henrietta Schmoll School of Health is growing programs and building support for interprofessional education. More »

Maja Johnson ’13: Starting a Career at the Mayo Clinic

Gustavus Campus News - Fri, 04/04/2014 - 11:44am

Maja Johnson ’13 at the Mayo Clinic.

When it comes to desirable companies to work for in Southern Minnesota, the Mayo Clinic would have to be near or at the top of any such list. Recent Gustavus graduate Maja Johnson ’13 was able to land her first job out of college at the Mayo as she is currently employed as a research technologist in the department of human integrative physiology.

“Early in the second semester of my senior year, my advisor, Dr. Karla Marz, told me about a position at the Mayo Clinic. With further help from Dr. Jeff Dahlseid, I was able to contact the lab I now work in and submit an application,” Johnson said. “I am very fortunate to have ended up where I am. The experience, work relationships and mentoring I have received have solidified my desire to be in the field. In addition, I have the opportunity to investigate where I would like to be as I continue my career.”

Johnson’s path to the Mayo Clinic started early in her freshman year at Gustavus when she took an introductory chemistry class taught by Dr. Amanda Nienow. The two got to know each other through class meetings, lab time, and visits during office hours and that led to Johnson working with Nienow on research in her laboratory. Johnson worked with Nienow during her sophomore year and then utilized a Gustavus Presidential Faculty/Student Collaboration Grant to continue to conduct research during the summer between her sophomore and junior years.

“I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to do scientific research for my coursework and at the extracurricular level,” Johnson said. “I studied the pesticide Imazamethabenz-methyl and how quickly the chemical is broken down in water by sunlight. During January Term of my junior year, I was able to continue that work full-time. This experience gave me a unique opportunity to combine knowledge from several disciplines including chemistry, physics, and mathematics and sparked an interest to pursue research further.”

Johnson considers her close relationship with Nienow as well as other professors across campus as one of the top reasons why she would recommend Gustavus to any high school student making their college choice.

Johnson on graduation day in 2013.

“When I am asked about the strengths of Gustavus, I always point to the engaging faculty. I was so fortunate to have professors who provoked curiosity, encouraged me to pursue interests, and allowed me to ask questions. In addition, they took the time to get to know me as a person,” Johnson said. “Dr. Nienow’s passion in the classroom and the lab was infectious and made me want to explore and learn more. Dr. Karla Marz led me to courses that fueled my interests and encouraged me to explore new opportunities, such as studying abroad. I also always loved chatting with Dr. Mary Gaebler (religion) in the Courtyard Café about current events, campus life, and big questions.”

While Johnson’s studies at Gustavus focused on science and research, she found herself rounding out her education in a variety of academic departments, which led to new passions and interests.

“Academic and campus life at Gustavus continually broadened my mind and challenged me to push past what I knew. As a first-year student, I was a bit narrow minded and thought I knew what I wanted to spend my time doing. Gustavus’ liberal arts curriculum brought surprising subjects and unforeseen opportunities,” Johnson said. “I discovered new interests in psychology, Buddhism, and art history. I even completed a religion minor simply because I loved the classes so much.”

Johnson kept busy outside of the classroom during her time at Gustavus as well. She served as a Gustavus Ambassador and a Gustie Greeter. She participated in the Crossroads Program, was a member of the Pre-Med Club and Tri-Beta, and sang with the Lucia Singers. She volunteered in the Emergency Department at a hospital in Mankato, studied abroad in Italy during January Term, worked as a Peer Mentor for the Biology and Chemistry Departments, and as a tour guide for the Admission Office.

Johnson says that all of those experiences helped her to develop interpersonal communication skills, which are coming in handy as she works as part of a large research group consisting of medical doctors, post-doctoral research fellows, graduate students, nurses, study coordinators, and research technologists.

“The research projects in our lab involve human subjects so during a typical study day I may be with the subject for several hours performing lab procedures and monitoring both the person and the results,” Johnson said. “Several of the studies I work on examine cardiovascular regulation and the autonomic nervous system. When I’m not with a subject in a study, I assist in analyzing the data from the studies, run statistical analysis, and help the primary investigators prepare tables, charts, and graphs.”

A quick reflection on Johnson’s path shows that she was able to take advantage of everything Gustavus has to offer and do it in four years. She developed close relationships with faculty mentors, challenged herself in the classroom and laboratory, joined a number of student organizations and made lifelong friends, took advantage of the College’s liberal arts curriculum, studied abroad, and when it was all said and done she left the hill with a desirable job in her chosen field.

“As I make my way into “the real world” now, I feel fortunate to have a well-rounded background. As I live in Rochester and work at the Mayo Clinic, I encounter people of various cultures, backgrounds, philosophies, and understandings,” Johnson said. “My education at Gustavus exposed me to a variety of ways of thinking, being, and doing. This gives me confidence to share life in a more full way.”


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas

MBA student presents at symposium in Vancouver

St. Kate's Campus News - Fri, 04/04/2014 - 11:43am
Caroline Portoghese ’16 presented her research on power mounting technology at the International Seating Symposium on March 5. More »

St. Kate’s, 3M to co-host leadership event for interior design professionals

St. Kate's Campus News - Fri, 04/04/2014 - 11:35am
An open house and leadership event at the University's space at the International Market Square will be April 30. More »

Michigan State Business Dean Stefanie Lenway to Lead St. Thomas’ Opus College of Business

University of St. Thomas Campus News - Fri, 04/04/2014 - 10:00am

Dr. Stefanie Lenway, business dean at Michigan State University, will become dean of the Opus College of Business and hold the Opus Distinguished Chair at the University of St. Thomas on Aug. 1.

Lenway, 63, will succeed Dr. Christopher Puto, 71, who has been dean of St. Thomas’ business programs since 2002. Following a one-year sabbatical leave, Puto plans to return to the university as a member of the Opus College of Business faculty.

While Lenway hasn’t formed specific initiatives for the Opus College of Business, “I’m interested and tremendously impressed with what St. Thomas has done in areas such as entrepreneurship, health care and ethics,” she said. “And certainly I’ll be exploring opportunities for online education. There is a growing demand for it.”

Lenway is a researcher, author, consultant on global technology innovation, and for the past 33 years has been a university business professor, department chair or dean.

Twenty-one of those years were at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management. She began teaching there in 1984 as an assistant professor of strategic management and organization and rose through the ranks to become chair of her department and, from 2002 to 2005, associate dean. She was dean of the College of Business Administration at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 2005 to 2010, and has served as the Eli and Edythe L. Broad Dean of the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State since 2010.

A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, she received a bachelor’s in politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a master’s in political science from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her M.B.A. and Ph.D. in business administration are from the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley.

“We are pleased to welcome Stefanie to the University of St. Thomas. She has the leadership qualities, energy and vision we were looking for,” said Dr. Susan Huber, executive vice president and provost of St. Thomas. “With her 30-plus years of experience in higher education, especially here in the Twin Cities, she is ideally prepared to build on the Opus College of Business’ academic achievements and to lead it in service to the region’s business community.”

“Stefanie is a strategic, creative thinker who sees opportunities and knows how to take advantage of them,” said Dr. Julie Sullivan, president of St. Thomas. “She is very collaborative and will work closely with people across campus and with the business community. She is particularly interested in entrepreneurship and building international programs and relationships. She knows this area well, having been a faculty member and administrator at the University of Minnesota, and will strengthen our networks in the community.”

“Stefanie is an insightful and big-picture thinker with a wonderful background and a world of experience and connections to make things happen at St. Thomas,” said Richard M. Schulze, founder and chairman emeritus of Best Buy Co. Inc. and a benefactor who chairs the Opus College of Business Strategic Board of Governors and sits on the university’s Board of Trustees. “She will build on the foundation at the business school and reach fully into the business community for meaningful partnerships.

“Her interest on building an entrepreneurial focus adds value throughout the university, as well as providing leadership to the importance of competitive advantage for students wanting to control their own destiny. I am pleased she is coming to St. Thomas to focus on the added dimension of high-quality inspiration throughout all our colleges.”

Lenway began her teaching career in 1981 as an assistant professor at Washington University in St. Louis, where she was named Teacher of the Year in 1984. That year her doctoral dissertation on the politics of international trade received the Best Dissertation Award from the Academy of Management and was published by Pitman.

While at the University of Minnesota, she was named a McKnight Land-Grant Professor, again received a best teacher award, and with international field work funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, co-wrote her second book, Managing New Industry Creation. The book chronicles the history of the global liquid-crystal, flat-screen television industry and was published by Stanford University Press. It was co-written by Dr. Jeffrey Hart and Dr. Thomas Murtha, Lenway’s husband and frequent partner in writing scholarly papers and articles on international business.

Murtha joined the Opus College of Business in 2013 as a Distinguished Service Professor of Management, and has a long record of service on nonprofit boards. He is the immediate past president of the Industry Studies Association, an academic society that he helped to found in 2009, and is current president of the Bakken Trio chamber music company in the Twin Cities. Murtha also teaches doctoral students in international business at Michigan State, and is an emeritus professor of strategic management at the Carlson School.

Lenway is on the board of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB) and is a fellow and past president of the Academy of International Business. She has served as a consultant on global innovation strategies for firms such as 3M, Nokia, Applied Materials and Honeywell.

During her years at Michigan State, Lenway built a global network of academic partners to create teaching and research opportunities for faculty and students. She helped launch Broad College’s first completely online degree program, a master of science in management, strategy and leadership, and led the development of a master’s in business analytics and several online certificate programs. While at the University of Illinois at Chicago, she helped create a multidisciplinary Innovation Center that brought together the colleges of architecture, engineering and business.

If you ask Lenway why she chose to become business dean at St. Thomas, she’ll tell you “the No. 1 reason is St. Thomas President Julie Sullivan.”

Both Lenway and Sullivan have Ph.D.s in business and many years of experience teaching and leading university business programs. “That’s a huge plus,” Lenway said. “When Dr. Sullivan and I first talked on the phone, I knew immediately that she is really someone I could work with.”

Lenway also is excited to work with the St. Thomas faculty. “Dean Chris Puto has assembled an outstanding faculty during his years at St. Thomas, and leading the Opus College of Business to its AACSB accreditation was a tremendous accomplishment.”

“St. Thomas’ AASCB accreditation was critical to my decision to accept the university’s offer,” Lenway said. “It means that the Opus College of Business is focused on continuous improvement and is preparing students for the careers of tomorrow.”

Lenway has followed St. Thomas’ evolution as a university since the 1980s and says “when I was at the University of Minnesota we used to talk about the ‘old St. Thomas.’ Now we see the ‘new St. Thomas.’ The old UST was primarily a teaching college. The new UST is now seen as an integrated university, emphasizing teaching, research and service.”

Lenway is looking forward to returning to Minnesota, meeting friends, colleagues, “and especially working with the business community.” She is a musician but admits, “I’ve been neglecting my double bass lately.”

She and her husband have a home near Minneapolis’ Loring Park and they enjoy walking the lakes and attending Twin Cities cultural events. They have one adult son, Morgan Murtha, who works in the hospitality industry in Los Angeles.

Sullivan and Huber thanked members of the dean search committee, which was chaired by Dr. Don Weinkauf, dean of the School of Engineering. Committee members from the Opus College of Business are:

  • David Deeds, Ph.D., Schulze Chair of Entrepreneurship and director of the Morrison Center for Entrepreneurship;
  • Dawn Elm, Ph.D., professor and department chair, Ethics and Business Law;
  • Michael Garrison, associate dean of faculty and scholarship; professor, Ethics and Business Law;
  • Lisa Guyott, director of Marketing Communications;
  • Pat Hedberg, Ph.D., associate professor and department chair, Management; 3M Professor in Residence;
  • Sameer Kumar, Ph.D., CenturyLink Endowed Chair in Global Communications and Technology Management; professor, Operations and Supply Chain Management;
  • Michael Porter, Ed.D., director, Master of Business Communication Program; and
  • Linda Sloan, director, Industry Relations and Career Management.

In addition, Tim Flynn and Dick Schulze, members of the college’s Strategic Board of Governors, served on the committee.

About the Opus College of Business

Business education has been a hallmark of St. Thomas since it added a “commercial course” to its liberal arts curriculum in 1895. Of the university’s 10,221 students, 34 percent are enrolled in the Opus College of Business. Forty-three percent of undergraduates and 30 percent of graduate students study business at the university’s campuses in St. Paul and Minneapolis.

St. Thomas established an MBA program in 1974, and in 2011 the Opus College of Business became the first private college or university in Minnesota, and the second university in the Twin Cities, to hold accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International. In 2014, the college was ranked 100 among the top U.S. business schools by U.S. News & World Report, placing it among the top five in the Upper Midwest.

The Opus College of Business has 98 full-time faculty who teach in Schulze Hall, which opened in downtown Minneapolis in 2005, and in McNeely Hall, which opened on the university’s St. Paul campus in 2006.

The college’s 1,145 graduate students are enrolled in seven master’s programs, and its 2,300 undergraduates can choose from 13 business concentrations. Another 4,100 participants attend executive-education classes each year. The college has more than 31,000 alumni and an endowment of $85 million.

University is open; classes in session

St. Kate's Campus News - Fri, 04/04/2014 - 8:16am
The University is monitoring weather conditions. Classes will meet as scheduled. More »

The Scroll: Art @ UST

University of St. Thomas Campus News - Thu, 04/03/2014 - 8:50pm

Susan Alexander

Ever since I boldly offered my opinion of two prominent St. Thomas outdoor sculptures (“Ten Things I Hate About St. Thomas”) in November 2012, campus art cognoscenti have sought my advice on art.

Consequently, I have decided to order new business cards – Susan Alexander, noted art critic and economist.

When Mark Stansbury-O’Donnell (Art History) heard this, he gently suggested that I might need more of a track record before going professional. In an effort to build my reputation, I am following up with additional musings about UST artwork.

First of all, contrary to rumor, we do have art that I like. I am particularly fond of Constellation Earth on the O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library plaza. It brings the sense of connectedness that universities should foster.

That’s not all. I am proud of our Asmat art collection. Not only is it one of the largest in the world, but pieces from the collection have been on exhibit at the Minneapolis Institute of Art and the Musical Instruments Museum in Arizona. I love seeing those “On Loan from the University of St. Thomas” tags.

We also have a magnificent collection from the estate of local collector Dolly Fiterman.

But really one does not make a name in art criticism by being nice. So . . .

I considered critiquing Frank Gehry’s Winton Guest House on the Owatonna campus. After all, the house is small and has no plumbing. How long would any guest want to stay under those circumstances? But Victoria Young (Art History) is still speaking to me, and I want to keep it that way. Maybe there is an Andy Warhol port-a-potty we could purchase for the house.

My next idea was an exposé of “In the Beginning” on South Campus. The problem with this option is that I do not understand the work. I cannot tell front from back, or beginning from end. Looked at one way, the piece starts with the less well-defined figure near the corner and works toward the fully developed literary woman. But it also makes sense to start from reading woman and work toward the liberated, open flying figure. I may be too linear a thinker for the art critic gig. My attention span also may be too short – I look at this piece for five minutes and my mind wanders to Roger Vadim’s “And God Created Woman.” I’m pretty sure that the sculptor was not thinking of the 1956 film and Brigitte Bardot.

Okay, here’s my last shot at fame. “The Family” sculpture strikes me as exemplary of all that was wrong with Soviet industrial art. The title actually may be “the Nuclear Family;” there is no longer an identifying placard. It probably had one when it was located on the east wall of the old field house. While there are many reasons to be pleased with the AARC, not the least for me was not having to pass by “The Family” every day on my way into the office. When “The Family” was dismantled during construction, I heard that the university might be willing to part with it. My heart leapt. Then I found out the piece weighs three tons and no one was willing to pay the $40,000 to relocate it. I am not easily discouraged, however, and I started a rumor it was three tons of solid copper. Surely someone would steal it for scrap value! No such luck – it is now securely attached to the east side of Brady Educational Center. I hear it was on the west side, but the community garden eggplant threatened ratatouille and the tomatoes withered on the vine.

Those vegetables know their art.

<i>Tibet: Finding Hope in Exile</i> is Topic for MAYDAY! Peace Conference

Gustavus Campus News - Thu, 04/03/2014 - 4:10pm

The 34th annual MAYDAY! Peace Conference at Gustavus Adolphus College will take place Wednesday, April 30 and is titled Tibet: Finding Hope in Exile. This year’s conference will present the story of the Tibetan people—their exile experience and their efforts to maintain their identity and build a global democratic culture under difficult circumstances.

The Conference will feature a morning keynote address by Dr. B. Tsering, principal of the Dalai Lama Institute for Higher Education in Bangalore, India, as well as an afternoon panel discussion featuring Tsering, Tenzin Sonam, Midwest regional coordinator of Students for a Free Tibet, Norzin Wangpo, president of the Tibet American Student Association at the University of Minnesota, and Ngawang Gonsar, a visiting instructor in biology at Gustavus who was born to parents who served the Tibetan community in exile and grew up splitting time between boarding school in northern India and her home in Kathmandu, Nepal. All events are free and open to the public.

Dr. Tsering’s family was among the first to escape into India from Chinese-occupied Tibet following the Dalai Lama’s escape in 1959. She grew up under the most challenging conditions and has witnessed the survival and growth of Tibetan culture in exile first-hand. She has contributed to it immeasurably as a groundbreaking leader in education and government. Dr. Tsering became the first Tibetan woman to earn a Ph.D. degree when she completed hers in science education from the University of Virginia.

The full schedule of events for the day is as follows:

  • 9 a.m. / Registration / Heritage Banquet Room
  • 10 a.m. / Welcoming Ceremony / Christ Chapel
  • 10:20 a.m. / Morning Keynote Address, “Finding Hope in Exile: Tibet’s Global Democratic Future” with Dr. B. Tsering / Christ Chapel
  • 11:30 a.m. / Lunch Break
  • 1 p.m. / Afternoon Panel Discussion, “Tibet’s Democratic Future: Perspectives from India and Minnesota” / Alumni Hall, O.J. Johnson Student Union
  • 3 p.m. / Deconstruction of the Mandala / A public ceremonial procession from Christ Chapel to Linnaeus Arboretum
  • 4 p.m. / Closing Ceremony and Reception / Melva Lind Interpretive Center, Linnaeus Arboretum

A traditional sand mandala will be created by Tibetan monks from the Gyuto Wheel of Dharma (Life) Monastery in Minneapolis and it will be on display in Christ Chapel.

Conference attendees will also be able to view a display wall on the upper level of the C. Charles Jackson Campus Center that will tell the story of the 50-plus year Tibetan exile experience and their efforts to maintain their identity and build a global democratic culture.

Freewill donations will be accepted during the Conference to support the operations of the recently established Dalai Lama Institute for Higher Education in Bangalore, India.

The annual MAYDAY! Peace Conference was founded at Gustavus 1981 by Florence and the late Raymond Sponberg of North Mankato, Minn., and is designed to educate the campus community about issues related to peace, human rights, and social justice. The conference occurs every year on the last Wednesday in April or the first Wednesday in May. Previous conference themes have focused on land rights, violence in community, hunger, the banning of landmines, food security, global water issues, and political policies relating to peace issues.

For questions or more information about this year’s conference, contact the Gustavus Office of Marketing and Communication at 507-933-7520 or


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas

Lawyers of Color Names Levy-Pounds One of the Most Influential Law Professors in the U.S.

University of St. Thomas Campus News - Thu, 04/03/2014 - 3:03pm

University of St. Thomas School of Law Professor Nekima Levy-Pounds is one of the most influential young minority law professors in the country, according to media and research company Lawyers of Color.

Levy-Pounds was named to the company’s “50 Under 50” list for 2014, which recognizes law professors of color who are making “bold contributions to the legal cannon and the community at large.”

Nekima Levy-Pounds

As professor and founding director of the Community Justice Project, the School of Law’s award-winning civil rights legal clinic, Levy-Pounds fosters and inspires up-and-coming lawyers to work to improve the lives of members of underserved communities and youths in the Twin Cities. Challenging laws and policies that hold back communities of color, she has carved her place in the local civil rights movement.

With Levy-Pounds’ vision, the Community Justice Project developed Brotherhood Inc., a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that uplifts and empowers young African American males who have had contact with the criminal justice system, are involved in gangs, or are at risk of such involvement. Brotherhood supports these young men through educational programs, social enterprises, work opportunities and case management.

Levy-Pounds is co-chair of Everybody In, chair of the Minnesota Advisory Commission to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, member of the board of directors for Catholic Charities of Minnesota, member of the board of directors for The Minneapolis Foundation, chair of Brotherhood Inc., fellow of the American Bar Foundation, member of the Senate File 2725 Work Group, past adviser to U.S. Sen. Al Franken, member of the FBI Civil Rights Advisory Group, and contributing writer to MinnPost and Twin Cities Daily Planet.

Lawyers of Color has been recognized by the American Bar Association, National Black Law Students Association, and National Association of Black Journalists. With a core readership of 35,000, nearly 200,000 unique blog visitors, and nearly 4,000 followers and fans, Lawyers of Color aims to promote the causes and contributions of minority attorneys.

Carly Aplin ’07: Raising Awareness for Women’s Heart Health

Gustavus Campus News - Thu, 04/03/2014 - 10:10am

Carly Aplin ’07

You might be familiar with Gustavus Adolphus College graduate Carly Aplin ’07. You might have seen her interviewing Hollywood celebrities on the Twin Cities television station CW 23, or interviewing Snocross racers for CBS Sports Network or Fox Sports North. You could have also heard her on one of several radio stations in the Twin Cities including KFAN’s PowerTrip Morning Show, 93X, and KDWB’s Dave Ryan in the Morning Show. What you might not know about Aplin is that she is also the creator and director of a unique local charity event that raises money and awareness for women’s heart health.

In 2011, Aplin had the opportunity to attend the national Red Dress event during New York Fashion Week and it sparked an idea to organize a similar event in the Twin Cities. After returning from New York, Aplin approached the local fashion organization MNfashion and together they selected a group of dedicated designers and local celebrity models to create Minnesota’s own Red Dress Collection.

The event, which was held this winter at the Graves Hotel in mid-February, pairs local designers with local celebrity models for a one-of-a-kind runway show. All proceeds from ticket sales, a silent auction, and additional donations benefit the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women program.

“I have a passion for raising funds and awareness for heart disease. Heart disease continues to be the number one killer of women and sharing that message is very important to me. Eighty percent of heart disease is preventable, so we can make a difference simply by spreading awareness,” Aplin said. “We also have a thriving fashion scene in Minnesota that sometimes gets overlooked. This event gives our talented local designers a chance to showcase a custom piece from their collection. We hope Red Dress Collection exposes these designers to a new audience each year.”

Some of the most recognizable women in the Twin Cities took part in the runway show this year including KARE-11 anchor Julie Nelson, the host of HGTV’s show “Rehab Addict” Nicole Curtis, KDWB morning show co-host Falen Bonsett, Twin Cities Live host Elizabeth Ries, KARE-11 reporter Jana Shortal, and others. The event also has several sponsors including University of Minnesota Physicians Heart at Fairview, the Lillehei Heart Institute, and Prime Therapeutics.

“We’ve been very fortunate to have many of the same partners onboard since the very first Red Dress event in 2012,” Aplin said. “We have a great team in place to make this event bigger and better each year. Because of our generous sponsors, donors, and guests, we’ve been able to donate $40,000 to Go Red for Women over the past three years.”

Aplin at this year’s Red Dress Collection event.

Aplin, who was raised in St. Cloud, was familiar with Gustavus during her high school years because her older sister Katie ’05 is also a Gustie.

“After visiting her several times, I decided this was a school I wanted to be a part of,” Carly said. “The academics, ELCA affiliation, and sense of community were all huge factors for me.”

Aplin pursued a degree in communication studies and says she was influenced academically and personally by professors Leila Brammer and Terry Morrow, who encouraged her to remain curious, continue learning, and maintain high expectations for herself.

“Gustavus provided me with a well-rounded educational experience that not only prepared me for a career in broadcast journalism, but also taught me to pursue my passion,” Aplin said. “At Gustavus, college is about more than a letter grade. We were constantly challenged to do more for our community and each other. There’s a wonderful sense of community and caring on the Gustavus campus and I do my best to carry that with me into my personal and professional life.”

Aplin plans to continue to grow the Red Dress Collection event in the years ahead. Anyone interested in attending or contributing to the cause can find out more information at

“The goal is to put ourselves out of an event,” Aplin said. “We love Red Dress, but someday, if we no longer need awareness and funds for women’s heart health, well, that will be something to celebrate – in red dresses, of course.”


Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas

Values in Action Team Trip to Harvard

Hamline University Campus News - Thu, 04/03/2014 - 12:00am
Two Hamline students and two staff members recently traveled to Cambridge, MA to visit the humanist communities at Harvard in support of the new Values in Action program at Hamline.
Syndicate content