A Year in the Student Union
It’s kind of hard to believe that another year has come and gone in the student union at Minnesota State University Moorhead – but that’s not to say we didn’t make the most of it! Each year is filled with memories, so let us share a few from the 2013-2014 Academic Year.
August – The beginning of a new year is always a treat as many of our student employees return from summer jobs and we get to meet the new class of freshmen. One of our favorite parts of August is the Dragons AfterDark event that kicks of the year! With a “Lights, Camera, Action!” theme in 2013, we had all kinds of fun – including a “Walk of Fame Cake Walk.”
September – Between DragonFest in early September and Homecoming at the end of September, we should just declare it Dragon Pride Month! The Homecoming theme of “Once a Dragon, Always a Dragon” not only reminded alumni of their proud Dragon heritage, it also helped MSUM celebrate it’s 125th year. So many awesome events happening during Homecoming Week, but our favorite still is the Burning of the M because it includes coronation and fireworks – and a healthy amount of Dragon Pride, of course!
October – In October, as the leaves were changing, we received permission from the state for a big change to the student union! On October 15, the state approved an $8.5 million renovation and addition project, which will truly transform the student union. We are excited for what is in store!
November – For the student union, November was filled with events hosted by many of our student organizations, including Japan Night, China Night, and the Kappa Sigma Philanthropy Ball. We love helping student groups put on successful events that they can be proud of hosting. We are, after all, a student union!
December – With the end of the semester approaching, we took time to recognize our students in a small celebration. We say thank you to our graduating seniors and give awards to students for their hard work. In December, our award winners were Kelsey Metz – First Year Student Award Winner; Keather Lindman – Frontline Student Award Winner; and Tara Andresen – Student Leader Award Winner.
January – Ah, the start of a new year and a new semester often bring exciting events, and this January was no exception. In January, considerable progress was made in our small construction project that had begun in November – a new C-Store. The glass walls were installed, along with the counter space and final preparations for the rest of the equipment – hooray for progress!
February – For being a short month, February sure packed itself full of important events in the life of your student union. Early in February, the architects for our major renovation and addition project arrived for a visit. They help lead a process to determine the needs and wants of students in the future of their student union, which included an awesome activity where students were able to choose words, pictures and textures that represented the student union. In the end, it became an awesome art project! In addition, February means it’s time for DragonFrost, and we served up hundred of bowls of ice cream in the student union to help celebrate the week!
March – While many events take place in March, perhaps our favorite was celebrating National Popcorn Lover’s Day on March 13 in the student union. Who knew that popping a few hundred bags of popcorn and handing them out could make students so happy! We love doing what we can to break up the winter/mid-semester blues. We also had another visit from our architects – they came back with initial floor plans and some 3D models that really helped the project begin to come to life. We honestly are so excited for the project to begin in the spring of 2015.
April – We’ll be honest here, we secretly refer to April as the “craziest month of the year” in the student union, because there is just so much happening in one month! To give you a very brief idea of what happened in April
- Celebration of Nations put on by International Student Services
- The professional staff attended an ACUI Conference where Karen received an Emeritus Award
- MSUM hosted the MnSCU Student Academic Conference as well as the MSUM Student Academic Conference
- MSUM’s new President was announced (Congratulations, Anne Blackhurst!)
- Seven Dragon Days were held in the student union
- On April 24, the student union celebrated its 47th birthday (complete with cupcakes!)
- Student Senate celebrated Diversity Week April 22-26
- The Dragon Entertainment Group planned and coordinated #DragonsGiveBack, including several service projects on campus and in the community
- Plus, there were countless banquets, celebrations, and ceremonies (special thanks to our MSUM Catering staff for serving all of them!
May – Even though graduation happens in mid-May, we managed to pack the month full of great things! We celebrated another great year in the student union with our Student Employee Banquet. And what’s a banquet without awards? We gladly gave awards to five of our outstanding students: Bikash Rai, Student Leader of the Year; Frontline Student of the Year Sara Fritz; Student Leader of the Semester Holly Hoeschen; Frontline student of the Semester Jordan Pinneke; First Year Student of the Semester Logan Schrader.
Also in May, we celebrated Karen Mehnert-Meland Appreciation Day – no really, that’s a thing! The Mayor of the City of Moorhead declared May 14 as Karen Mehnert-Meland Appreciation Day as we celebrated Karen’s lifetime of service to MSUM with a retirement party (don’t worry, she’ll be around until June 30).
As you can see, we’ve had another great year in the student union at MSUM. Really, though, we’d be nothing without our incredible students, so thank you for making this last year fun-filled and overflowing with memories.