August 2014 Archives

Northwest Regional Sustainable Development Partnership (NWRSDP) invites Idea Briefs to be submitted by September 26, 2014. We are seeking projects that contribute to the vibrant future of Northwest Minnesota. We will also seek a second round of ideas in January 2015.  

 

As a part of University of Minnesota Extension, the Regional Sustainable Partnerships (RSDP) brings together local talent and resources with University of Minnesota knowledge and seed funding to drive sustainability in four areas: agriculture and food systems, tourism and resilient communities, natural resources, and clean energy. The Northwest RSDP office in Crookston is led by Linda Kingery, executive director, and a board comprised of community and university representatives. 

 

"The project Idea Brief launches a conversation with the NWRSDP by providing a sketch of the project and an early draft of the project proposal," said Linda Kingery, executive director. "NWRSDP seeks innovative ideas that are identified and valued by the community and collaborate with the university to foster sustainability."  

 

In recent years, NWRSDP has supported successful projects for natural play space design in several communities such as Crookston, Warren, Fertile, Fosston, Mahnomen and Ada, a sustainable tourism assessment program in Warroad, community garden design for the Bemidji Food Shelf, and a social science assessment of conservation in the Red River Valley. The partnership also supports farmers' markets and community gardens across the region and is the organizer of the very popular, Local Foods College.


NWRSDP is one of five Regional Partnerships across the state that connects local communities and citizens with resources from the University of Minnesota.  Each of the five Regional Partnerships (Southeast, Northwest, Northeast, Southwest, and Central) is citizen-driven, building community-university partnerships that create new opportunities and solve problems in Greater Minnesota.

 

For more information and to submit an idea to the NWRSDP, see "Idea Brief" at RSDP.umn.edu or contact Linda Kingery at  kinge002@umn.edu or 218-281-8697.


To learn more about the work of the Northwest Regional Partnership go to http://blog.lib.umn.edu/rsdp/northwest.  

The Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (RSDPs) give communities in Greater Minnesota access to the University of Minnesota in order to help solve problems and take advantage of new opportunities. As a part of University of Minnesota Extension, NW RSDP brings together local talent and resources with University of Minnesota knowledge and seed funding to drive sustainability in four areas: agriculture and food systems, tourism and resilient communities, natural resources, and clean energy.


Contact: Linda Kingery, executive director, U of M Northwest Regional Sustainable Development Partnership, 218-281-8697 (kinge002@umn.edu)

The Princeton Review, an education services company widely known for its test prep programs and college and graduate school guides, named the University of Minnesota Crookston as one of 159 colleges in their "Best in the Midwest" for 2015.  This recognition marks the eighth consecutive year the campus has been included as a Best in the Midwest. Results are posted in the website feature, "2015 Best Colleges: Region by Region" at www.princetonreview.com/best-regional-colleges.aspx.

Selection Process

The Princeton Review editors narrowed their choices based on institutional data the Company collected directly from several hundred colleges in each region, staff visits to schools over the years, and the opinions college counselors and advisors whose recommendations the Company invites.

For this project, The Princeton Review asks students attending the schools to rate their own schools on several issues -- from the accessibility of their professors to the quality of their science lab facilities -- and answer questions about themselves, their fellow students, and campus life. 

The Princeton Review also rates the schools on its "2015 Best Colleges: Region by Region" list in six categories. The rating scores (on a scale of 60 to 99) appear on the school profiles, and are tallied from institutional data the Company obtained from the colleges in 2013-14 and/or its student survey data.

About The Princeton Review

The Princeton Review is a leading test preparation and college admission services company. Every year it helps millions of college- and graduate school-bound students achieve their education and career goals through its test preparation, tutoring, and admissions services, its online resources, and its more than 150 print and digital books published by Random House LLC. The Princeton Review is headquartered in Natick, MA.  For more information, visit www.princetonreview.com

Today the University of Minnesota, Crookston delivers 29 bachelor's degree programs, 20 minors, and 36 concentrations on campus--as well as 13 degrees online--in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of 1,800 undergraduates from more than 20 countries and 40 states, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit www.umcrookston.edu.

Contact: Andrew Svec, director, communications, public relations, and marketing, 218-281-8438 (asvec@umn.edu)

Fall semester classes at the University of Minnesota Crookston begin Tuesday, August 26, 2014, and faculty and staff are on campus this week participating in a number of workshops and activities in anticipation of the arrival of students and the beginning of the semester. 

New Laptops

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The new laptops arrived earlier in August and are ready for students. Staff in the HelpDesk have loaded the 1,150 HP EliteBook 840 G1 Notebook PCs, which boast an Intel i5-4200U (1.6GHz w/turbo, 3MB cache) processor as well as a touch screen. Over the past several years, the campus has experimented with convertible tablet computers (2-in-1 devices) through pilot programs where many of the faculty and some staff members have participated. Technology Support Services continues to expand its pilot testing of various convertible and detachable tablet designs.

Pathway to Nursing

Recently, Chancellor Fred Wood and Vice Chancellor Barbara Keinath met with Connie Delaney, Ph.D., R.N., professor and dean of the University of Minnesota School of Nursing in Minneapolis. The meeting ended with the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the U of M Crookston and the U of M School of Nursing (UMSN) on the Twin Cities campus. The purpose of the MOU is to develop a framework of cooperation or a "pathway to nursing" which would allow qualified UM Crookston graduates to enroll in the Master of Nursing program at the UMSN. 

U of M Crookston students would complete a series of required coursework that would prepare them for the Master of Nursing program.  The two institutions would work collaboratively in the recruitment and advising of students preparing for the UMSN program. UMC faculty and staff would coordinate with the Office of Student and Career Advancement Services there. Ideally, students going on to study in the Master of Nursing program would return to rural Minnesota to complete clinical training.  The program is an innovative response to an impending shortage of nurses. It also addresses the increased level of educational preparedness expected from nurses now entering this career field. 

Faculty and staff from the U of M School of Nursing are planning to visit the Crookston campus to further discuss the program 

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on October 23, and both institutions will continue to work on the process throughout the academic year. 

International Students

Of the 59 new international students on campus this fall, 35 of them are from Brazil. For one academic year, these students, funded through the Brazilian government, are studying mainly in the animal science pre-vet program area, but all of them are studying within the areas of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, known as STEM. They will be joining two students from Brazil who have been on campus this summer.

Campus Garden

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The Allan and Freda Pedersen Garden has been providing fresh produce to the campus since mid-August and student-athletes have already enjoyed some of the harvest. The garden is a cooperative project between the University and community with a host of collaborators including the Office of Student Affairs, Office of Academic Affairs, Sodexo Dining Services, Center for Sustainability, and Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources. U of M Extension provided guidance though Terry Nennich, a fruit and vegetable specialist, and Todd Cymbaluk, a local gardener and agriculturalist, provided technical expertise. 

Today the University of Minnesota, Crookston delivers 29 bachelor's degree programs, 20 minors, and 36 concentrations on campus--as well as 13 degrees online--in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of 1,800 undergraduates from more than 20 countries and 40 states, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit www.umcrookston.edu.


In the photos:


Top right: HP EliteBook 840


Lower right: Barbara Keinath, vice chancellor for academic affairs, Connie Delaney, Ph.D., R.N., professor and dean of the University of Minnesota School of Nursing, and Chancellor Fred Wood.


Lower left: Campus Garden


Contact: Andrew Svec, director, communications, public relations, and marketing, 218-281-8438 (asvec@umn.edu)

RiverView Recovery and UMC Plan Recovery Month 2014

RiverView Recovery Center and the University of Minnesota Crookston (UMC) are finalizing plans for Recovery Month 2014.


This year's events include a concert by an award winning musician, a recovery celebration with fireworks, a talk from one of recovery's strongest voices for treatment and recovery, and a public screening of a new, ground-breaking documentary on the topic of addiction and recovery in America.


Local events kick off Friday, September 12 at 6:30 p.m. at RiverView Recovery on Hwy 2 East of Crookston. Following an evening of recovery speakers, the band Sky Blues will take the stage. Following the band's performance a fireworks show will light the night sky.


On Thursday, September 18, a free public showing of the new documentary The Anonymous People will be held at 7 p.m. in Kiehle Auditorium on the UMC campus. The feature length film focuses on the 23.5 million Americans living in long-term recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs and asks the question; "Are deeply entrenched social stigma and discrimination to blame for keeping recovery voices silent and faces hidden?"  The film features numerous high visibility Americans including actress Kristen Johnston perhaps best known for her role in the TV show "3rd Rock from the Sun." In the documentary Johnston reads from her book, "Guts," "I refuse to feel ashamed of who I am. I most certainly will not be ashamed that I am an addict. I am going to tell whoever I damn well want to." The screening will be followed by Questions and Answers.


Monday, September 22 at 7 p.m. in Kiehle Auditorium, William Cope Moyers takes the stage with his much sought after experience, strength and hope about addiction and recovery. As Vice President of Public Affairs at Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, Moyers is one of the nation's most renowned speakers in the area of public policy pertaining to addiction and recovery and has been a powerful advocate for change. Moyers is the author of two books which detail his personal journey with addiction and recovery. Moyers calls himself a person in long-term recovery from an illness that has no cure but does have a solution. He has gone on record saying, "The fact that there is still a stigma is unacceptable. Addiction is the most misunderstood disease of our time. But through science and advocacy, we're making important gains. In the past decade alone, we've come a long way in recognizing addiction as a disease and embracing the reality that people do recover. We know that addiction doesn't discriminate, that treatment works, and that recovery is possible." William Cope Moyer's father, journalist Bill Moyers, produced The Hijacked Brain, the critically acclaimed HBO series on addiction.


Wednesday, September 24, singer Mike Farris performs in Kiehle Auditorium at 7 p.m. Farris, winner of the 2008 American Music Association's Award for "Best New or Emerging Artist" has performed with the who's who of American music legends including Stevie Ray Vaughan, the Dave Matthew's Band, Sheryl Crow, and Bob Dylan. With a personal history that includes alcohol and drug addiction, Farris' music celebrates his freedom from chemicals and his faith in God. He said in a recent interview, "I was a destructive person. I was a drug addict and an alcoholic, so being where I am now and being able to share this spiritual music, this great musical heritage from America, and being part of a healing force is great." Farris travelled to Copenhagen, Denmark last year and in an interview there he talked about the diverse music genres that have influenced his style and he cited African American spiritual music as the foundation of his music. "This music was born out of a people in bondage, literal bondage, and because it was born out of struggle, it is still relevant and it is going to be relevant as long as there are people on earth because we are all struggling, we are all trying to figure it out, we are all trying to be free. I spent a lot of time in my life being on the wrong team. 


Recovery Month is a national observance each September that spreads the positive message that chemical dependency treatment is effective and people can and do recover. Events will be held across the country throughout the month.



Contact: Curt Hamre, Director, RiverView Recovery (218) 281-9538 chamre@riverviewhealth.org

University of Minnesota Crookston and Duke University Research Collaboration

A long-term collaboration between researchers at the University of Minnesota Crookston and 
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Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, has produced a number of major publications in the past months as well as a fourth publication at the end of 2013. U of M Crookston co-authors and contributors are Alvin Killough, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology in the Liberal Arts & Education Department, and Eryn Killough, teaching specialist in UMC's English as a Second Language program. Eryn is also a graduate student completing her Masters' degree in education at University of Minnesota Duluth.  

One publication was a review, summary, and exploration of educational literature focused on processes particularly in the United States that produce disparities in educational outcomes. Based on a historical context of inequity and social and cultural preferences, the authors present education as a microcosm of the larger American system. The paper is distinguished from many previous papers in its identification of problems in the current educational system, but then follows with a series of concrete recommendations for those problems. Lead by Alvin Killough and flanked by a second Minnesota researcher, Eryn Killough, the paper can be found at: Killough, A., Killough, E., Edwards, C.L., Burnett, J. (2014). Beyond America's White Hegemony:  In Response to a Rapidly Emerging Global Multi-Cultural Learning Community.  International Journal of Science, Commerce, and Humanities, 2(5), 93-110

A second project focused on the important role of perception in the risk for the development of depression among chronically ill Black adults. The idea was to derive a deeper understanding of the ways that subpopulations cope with chronic disease-related pain and thereby inform the development of models that better target individual and clinic resource utilizations.  That paper can be found at: Edwards, C.L., Killough, A., Wood, M., Doyle, T., Feliu, M., Barker, C.S., Uppal, P., DeCastro, L., Wellington, C., Whitfield, K.E., O'Garo, K.N., Morgan, K., Alesii, L.Y.E., Byrd, G.S., McCabe, M., Goli, V., Keys, A., Hill, L., Collins-McNeil, J., Trambadia, J., Guinyard, D., Muhammad, M., McDonald, P., Schmechel, D., Robinson. E. (2014). Emotional Reactions to Pain Predict Psychological Distress in Adult Patients with Sickle Cell Disease.  International Journal of Psychiatry and Medicine, 47(1), 1-16

A third project, represented by a published paper focused on treating pain and psychopathology in an African woman afflicted with HIV, also united the expertise of University of Minnesota researchers. In a manner not done previously, the lead researcher suggested that the paper identified "culture" as a primary influence on patient's presentation for care, diagnosis, treatment, and expectations for clinical outcomes." Using a case presentation format, researchers from Duke and Crookston conceptualized cultural influences on psychological and medical outcomes, and based on their previous work with health in an African population and ongoing collaborations, reportedly were committed to a continuation of this line of research. The full article can be found at: Edwards, C.L., Bryson, W.J., McCabe, M., Trambadia, J., Scott, D., Muhammad, M., Killough, A., Sudhakar, S., Keys, A., Feliu, M., McNeil, J., Barker, C.S., Wood, M., Reif, R., Hill, L., O'Garo, K.G.N., Bulthuis, C., Peasant, C., Kidd, A.C., Robinson, E., Treatment of PTSD in an HIV-Positive Rwandan Woman with a Recent Stroke: A Case Report on The Role of Culture, Norms, and Expectations for Psychotherapy. Research, 1, 980.

A fourth project, published in late 2013, critically reviews research from a systematic examination of articles published in PubMed between 1995 and 2013 concerning smoking patterns specific to immigrants of African descent in the U.S. given expected migration patterns to the U.S. and Minnesota.  The paper is distinguished from many previous papers in two ways.  First, it is one of the few attempts to bridge the gaps in scientific literature given the comparatively lack of research directed specifically to immigrants of African descent in the U.S. Second it promotes an acknowledgment of the inadequacy of the contemporary research given the complication of the too often use of the term ―"Black" in research to subsume culturally diverse groups of Africans recently living in the U.S. and emigrating to Minnesota. Lead by Alvin Killough and again flanked by a second Minnesota researcher, Eryn Killough, the full paper can be found at:  Killough, A., Killough, E., Hill, L.K., Edwards, C.L. (2013). Exploring the cultural context of tobacco use for prevention among ethnic groups of African descent. International Journal of Science, Commerce, and Humanities, 1(8), 121-147.   

In the photo, left to right, are Alvin and Eryn Killough with Chancellor Fred Wood.


Contact: Alvin Killough, associate professor, Liberal Arts and Education Dept., 218-281-8028 (killo010@umn.edu)

Pedersen Garden is Growing

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On May 21, 2014, the Allen and Freda Pedersen Garden was officially dedicated on the north edge of the University of Minnesota Crookston on City of Crookston property next to the Valley Tech Park building. This is a cooperative project between the University and community with a host of collaborators; UMC's Office of Student Affairs, Office of Academic Affairs, Sodexo Dining Services, Center for Sustainability, and Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources. U of M Extension provided guidance though Terry Nennich - Fruit and Vegetable Specialist, and Todd Cymbaluk, a local gardener and agriculturalist provided technical expertise. The Northwest Research and Outreach Center provided equipment loans and suggestions. The U of MN's Institute on the Environment provided a $ 2,500 Mini-grant which helped with planning through guest speakers and networking.

Actually, a campus garden has been under discussion for the past 2 years but the mini-grant and a generous donation from Allen Pedersen, a long-time Crookston resident and gardening enthusiast helped to move things along in the spring of 2014. Pedersen's donation funded a named Horticulture scholarship along with partial funding of a summer intern to assist with planting and maintenance of the garden.  Peter Phaiah, Vice-Chancellor of Student Affairs, and Dan Svedarsky, Director of the Center for Sustainability have been coordinating efforts this summer along with numerous student helpers. 

Allen Pedersen, now a resident of the Villa Apartments in Crookston, turned 98 on May 22 but manages to make it out to the Garden 3-4 times a week to check on progress. "I'm so pleased that my late wife Freda and I were honored with this naming of the campus garden" notes Allen, "and I'm amazed with the success this first year."  Due to the late spring and considering the site was in grass sod, numerous trips were made over the 3/4-acre site with a disc, roto-tiller, and a drag to break up the hard, but fertile clay soil.  Allen has sampled some of the cucumbers and claims the quality is excellent.

Allen, a former high school football coach in North Dakota, is looking forward to the Golden 
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Eagle football players reporting on campus and chowing down on the bountiful harvest. "The way things are looking, we have a great melon and squash crop in the making,'' says Pedersen, "and they are already harvesting cabbage, tomatoes, onions, pea pods, and cucumbers." Pedersen recently helped support the purchase of materials to construct "raised beds," which are 20-foot boxes where specialized soils can be mixed to grow herbs, lettuce, and carrots. These will be made from sturdy, Burr Oak planks cut at a sawmill in northeast North Dakota. 

Todd Cymbaluk assisted with soil testing and the installation of plastic mulch which helps the soil warm up, keeps down weeds, conserves water, and provides a cleaner product due to reducing soil splatter. Drip tape is laid down in the center of the strips of plastic and when transplants are installed; they are placed right next to the water lines where water can do the most good.

"I'm indeed grateful for all of the financial, material,  equipment, and expertise support which has been provided to help get the garden out of the ground this year," notes Dan Svedarsky.  "All of us have learned a lot and have been pleasantly surprised with the results so far. The returning students will be very pleased and this is what it's all about anyway."

For more information contact:  Dan Svedarsky, Center for Sustainability, 218-281-8129 or dsvedars@crk.umn.edu.

In photo, top, left: First cucumber harvest of the garden. From left; Allen Pedersen; Craig Hoiseth, Executive Director of the Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority (CHEDA), and Peter Phaiah, UMC Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs.

In photo, bottom, right: Recent photo of the Pederson Garden. 

Contact: Dan Svedarsky, Center for Sustainability, 218-281-8129 or dsvedars@crk.umn.edu

Beautiful Campus Grounds the Work of Dedicated Staff

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The beautiful campus grounds can be attributed to the hard working facilities and grounds crew at the University of Minnesota Crookston.

At the campus entrance gardens alone, members of the staff planted 5,676 flowers and plants this spring. Along with maintaining the plantings at the entrance, the staff has been busy with the many other campus gardens and improvements around UTOC, Selvig Hall, Owen Hall, the Early childhood Education Center, Kiehle Building, Skyberg Hall, and in the Kiser Building. 

Thank you to these outstanding members of the staff for their dedication and hard work and for making and keeping the U of M Crookston campus beautiful!

In the photo: Left to Right: Jerry Rude, contract consultant; Richie Navratil, student; Joe Kresl, buildings and grounds; Greg Benoit, grounds; Erin Schwarz, student; John Hughes, student; Rowenna Fillmore, student; Neal Vraa, grounds; Jesse Jennings, student; Jeff Pryor, student; Rebecca Sanders, buildings and grounds; Dennis Regan, buildings and grounds, Nell DeBoer,operations supervisor, facilities; and John Simmons, student. 

Contact: Elizabeth Tollefson, assistant director, communications, 218-281-8432 (ltollefs@umn.edu)

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