Name: Luke Miller
Hometown: Charleston, WV
Major(s): Communication Studies
Year of Expected Graduation: 2014
Colleges and universities he considered: University of Minnesota, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Pennsylvania, University of Chicago, Northwestern University, United States Military Academy, University of Maryland, West Virginia University
Why he chose the U of M: The University of Minnesota offered three things that convinced me to attend the institution. First, the value of the education is incredible. Choosing the University of Minnesota is receiving the highest level of academics at an amazingly affordable cost. Second, the University of Minnesota has one of the best locations in the country. There is a beautiful, distinct campus snuggled into two of the most vibrant, fun cities in the United States. Finally, the University provides incredible opportunities. When you consider location, academics, and size, there is something for everyone here at the U, whether it is research, arts, sports, community activism, or outdoor adventures.
How he is involved at the U of M: Currently I am working for the University as a Student Development Representative, which has been a great opportunity to talk with alumni and support the University. Also, I am a political news intern with the Minnesota Daily, our campus newspaper. I am involved with Campus Outreach, a Christian organization on campus.
Highlight of his U of M experience so far: The highlight for my University experience so far would have to be meeting so many completely new people.
Name: Luke Miller
Spring is finally here, and the U of M campus is busier than ever; everyone wants to get outside to enjoy the beautiful weather and the gorgeous scenery on our campus. Spring break just ended for me, and what an amazing time it was!
I took the week off from school as an opportunity to participate in a Pay It Forward Tour through a student organization, Students Today Leaders Forever (STLF). STLF was actually founded right here at the University of Minnesota by a group of four freshmen looking to make a difference. Since then, the organization has expanded to serve thousands of college, high school, and middle school students by providing opportunities in service and leadership.
The Pay It Forward Tour is a nine-day bus trip across the United States. The students on the tour stop in five different cities along the way. In each city, a community service project is completed before moving on. The tour ends in a "celebration city" where many buses gather to complete one huge service project, and share the different experiences that were had on the trip.
To learn more about what the Pay It Forward Tour is, check out the short video below:
This spring break was my second college Pay It Forward Tour. I also participated in a high school tour, which was four days long. I love getting involved with STLF and feeling like I really made a difference in the world! On the tour this year (from March 9-March 17) I traveled to: Rock Island, IL; St. Louis, MO; Paducah, KY; Memphis, TN; Texarkana, TX/AR and Dallas, TX. The community service projects were extremely rewarding. In Rock Island, I met the oldest man in the Western Hemisphere while helping out at a nursing home (He's 111 years old!), and in Kentucky, I was able to read to the most adorable elementary school children. We also completed a few outdoor projects on the trip. The tourism is also what makes this trip amazing! I was able to see so much of the country in such a short amount of time, including sites like the St. Louis arch and Beale Street in Memphis.
Finally, my favorite part of Pay It Forward Tours is the people you meet along the way. I have made an amazing group of 41 friends who were with me on the bus. We shared an incredible experience together, we got to know each other very well, and we will stay in touch for an especially long time!
If you would like to learn more about STLF and the Pay It Forward Tours, please visit the STLF website at http://www.stlf.net. To see photos from my Tour and the other Tours that travelled to Dallas over spring break this year, watch the video below! I hope you are able to see what an amazing time I had by getting involved this spring break!
The Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota announced its new dean recently. Sri Zaheer, a twenty-year veteran of the Carlson School, will be the second woman to hold this position.
As a student at the Carlson School of Management, I can't wait to see her around Carlson and hear about her plans for the school!
BusinessWeek.com has conducted a short interview with Zaheer; click here to read it now!
Matt Norris and Asha Sharma graduated from the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management in 2011. Together, they founded the A-list--a nonprofit youth center in Brooklyn Park, MN. This teen hang-out is focused on focuses on three key mission elements--entrepreneurship, education, and personal growth. Teens can go to the A-list to get a job, participate in educational afterschool programs, and enjoy fun evening events at night.
Matt and Asha's efforts in creating the A-list did not go unnoticed. The A-list was selected as one of the 15 finalists in the White House's Campus Champions of Change Challenge! Last fall, the White House launched the Campus Champions of Change Challenge program, which "honors students on college campuses who are helping their local communities." Asha nominated Matt for this honor, and he has become a finalist in the running to be honored at an event at the White House on March 15th. The top five students, based on online voting, will not only attend this special event, but will be featured by mtvU and MTV Act, and will host an episode of mtvU's signature program, "the Dean's List."
The goal of the Campus of Change Challenge is to recognize college and university students who make an impact, as well as to inspire students to get involved.
The deadline to cast your vote is Saturday, March 3rd at 11:59 p.m. Be sure to support Matt Norris and the A-list!
Amber Billings, a sophomore and graphic design student at the University of Minnesota, entered a national design contest last spring - and won! The task was to design a pack for Orbit gum. Her signature and design will appear on limited edition packs of Orbit's Melon Remix gum through February 2012. (See the photo below for Amber's design.)
Amber has been an artist and designer for her entire life and loves inspiring others with her work. Amber credits her academic adviser at the U of M for letting her know about the Orbit contest last spring; Amber figured she had nothing to lose and had high hopes for her chances to win the $5,000 in prize money awarded to the eight contest winners.
Amber's idea for the winning design was inspired by other Orbit packs as well as from design techniques that she has learned in her College of Design classes at the University of Minnesota. She began by looking at newer Orbit pack designs to figure out what the judges were looking for; she realized that geometric shapes and patterns were very popular. Using concepts and ideas that she developed in her color theory class, Amber created the eye-catching, winning design.
Amber chose the U of M for the four-year college experience, the location, and the excellent design program. Her ultimate dream is to someday have a job that she loves. As a student, Amber counts on her friends to be her motivation and support. They have become her "second family" in the transition from high school to college. Additionally, the energizing spirit of Amber's professors and instructors at the U of M encourage her to do her best work every day.
Amber's advice to other students who are seeking a creative path in life is simple: "You just have to make sure that what you're doing is what you want to be doing. If you like what you've created, others will too."