January 18, 2008
Issue 6 

Bemidji State University in the spotlight

by Bemidji State University President Dr. Jon E. Quistgaard

During fall start-up, I talked about continuing the momentum that was building at Bemidji State. From increased fund raising results to Linden Hall renovations to the new four-year nursing program, we celebrated the achievements of the past year as we laid plans for the future.
I’m pleased to report that within the past two weeks, we have experienced additional successes that will help us move closer to our strategic goals.
On Jan. 13, I had an extraordinary opportunity to meet with more than 40 representatives of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) and share with them Bemidji State’s vision for the future of our men’s ice hockey program. As part of that discussion, I also talked about BSU’s commitment to building a vibrant, student-centered university.
As a result of that meeting, the WCHA and Bemidji State announced earlier today a scheduling agreement that will build towards an increasing number of games against WCHA opponents with guaranteed home games.
While specific details of the arrangement are not yet finalized, it is anticipated that this agreement could lead to 12 non-conference games against WCHA opponents each year, with an even split of games at home and on the road.
This arrangement is part of the athletic department’s effort to meet the challenge I laid before it during my campus budget presentation last February. Since then, the department has aggressively pursued its fundraising goal of $2.5 million. While the goal is steep, I am confident, because of the progress they have made so far, that they will meet that goal by my original deadline of May 2008.
That successful fundraising effort, combined with the benefits of our scheduling arrangement with the WCHA, will help form the future of our men’s ice hockey program.
In addition to the progress that was made on the athletic front this week, we have received additional support for the academic arena as well.
Just this week, Bemidji State hosted U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, who visited our campus to discuss the University’s recently awarded federal funds for its nursing and technology programs.
These programs also received backing in Governor Pawlenty’s 2008 bonding requests forwarded to the State of Minnesota.
In total, the federal appropriations and the state bonding could bring more than $15 million to campus to support these and other academic programs, enabling us to create unique learning environments for our students and faculty alike.
This truly is an exciting time to be a part of Bemidji State University. I greatly appreciate the efforts of the entire campus community as we keep the momentum going.
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Bemidji State University is a member of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System.