MSU President's column for Traill County Tribune

August 17, 2013

Faculty and staff gear up for new academic year during pre-service workshops


The first sign of fall and a new academic year is the return of the athletes. A close second is the pre-service workshops for faculty and staff. Pre-service workshops generally take place during a three-day period the week before the fall semester classes begin. This year’s pre-service workshops are planned for August 21-23. This will be a time to meet new faculty and staff, learn about new policies and procedures, and become acquainted with new programs and initiatives.

The 2013 fall pre-service activities will kick off with a breakfast for faculty and staff Wednesday, August 21 at 7:00 a.m. Breakfast will be followed by my annual state of the university address. This will be held in the Classroom Building Auditorium, beginning at 8:00 a.m. The public is welcome to join us and hear the latest from Mayville State University. Then the university vice presidents will share their updates, and a number of other informational topics will be shared with faculty and staff.

We are fortunate to have Dr. Darin Eich with us during pre-service 2013. The Larson Leadership Program is funding his Mayville State speaking engagement which will focus on the overall topic of leadership.

Dr. Eich is a professional speaker, facilitator, and innovation consultant who works with institutions like Dartmouth and USA TODAY. He is the author of Root Down & Branch Out: Best Practices for Leadership Development Programs, and founder of Darin is also president of BrainReactions, an innovation consulting company founded by fellow students, where he led innovation projects to help organizations like P&G, the United Nations, and U.S. Council on Competitiveness.

Dr. Eich earned his Ph.D. in Educational Leadership & Policy Analysis from the University of Wisconsin. He has also been a graduate student and leadership educator at the University of Maryland and College of William and Mary. Darin lives in Madison, Wisc. His passion involved helping people to become themselves, find and live their strengths, and become more creative, innovative, and successful leaders.

Beginning at 11:00 a.m., Dr. Darin Eich will address Mayville State employees and students on the topic “Leadership Action: ‘Create, Communicate, & Innovate.’” He will offer a workshop for faculty after lunch on Wednesday. The topic for the workshop is “”Best Practices, Tools, Techniques, and Innovations for Facilitating Learning and Leadership Development in Your Classes & Programs.” On Thursday morning, Dr. Eich will facilitate a workshop with student leaders. The topic for that session is “Create Your Leadership Future NOW.”

A variety of workshops and activities will take place over the three-day pre-service schedule. There will be a technology showcase later on Wednesday afternoon, and tech training on Thursday morning. Becky Gunderson and Tim O’Brien will offer CPR training and recertification, and our new faculty will participate in orientation activities. The Faculty Association and Academic Standards Committee will meet as well.

All faculty and staff and their families have been invited to attend a picnic at Island Park on the evening of Thursday, August 22. The event is being hosted by the Office of Academic Affairs. This is the fifth year for such an event.

Because it signals the beginning of a new year, the time of pre-service workshops is always exciting. I am happy to welcome our veteran employees, as well as all of those who are new. It will be great to have everyone back on campus as we work to make a difference in the lives of students in pursuit of their educational goals.