MSU President's Newspaper Column

November 13, 2021 

Gifts to this year’s academic scholarship drive will have three times the impact

As the holidays draw near, our hearts are filled with gratitude for the many gifts with which we have been blessed. One of those precious gifts for countless alumni and friends is Mayville State University. For 132 years, the university has provided experiences that have made lives better.

Student scholarships help to ensure that Mayville State’s legacy of delivering the best in personal service and outstanding educational opportunities continues for new generations of students. The MSU Foundation has just kicked off the annual academic scholarship drive. Gifts received will help us to recruit and retain new students.

We know that scholarships may mean the difference in whether a student chooses to attend Mayville State, or whether to attend college at all. Gifts will help to relieve the financial stress that can go with earning a college degree and may be the very thing that makes it possible for a deserving person to do so. Students must carry the bulk of the financial load, but scholarships can really help to ease the burden.

Taylor Stegman, a senior from Drayton, N.D., is one of those scholarship recipients. This year, she is receiving the Agnes Geelan Scholarship and the Wymore Family Scholarship. Taylor is working toward a major in Biology with a specialization in Health Careers and minors in Chemistry and Business. After graduating from Mayville State, she plans to pursue a career in optometry.

Ms. Stegman is a member of the intercollegiate softball team, Science Club, and the Student Athlete Advisory Council. She also serves as state president of North Dakota Collegiate DECA and vice president for the Mayville State University Collegiate DECA chapter. She works on campus too, selling tickets at athletic events and working in a research lab within the biology department. We are Comet Proud of Taylor, an outstanding student and member of the Mayville State family.

In her fourth year at Mayville State, the close-knit campus community reminds Taylor of her hometown, where she graduated in a class of 11. She says the small-town feel is one of the most prominent deciding factors that helped her choose to continue her education at Mayville State. “Without the help of generous scholarship support from Mayville State alumni and friends, pursuing post-secondary education would not be nearly as attainable,” Taylor said recently. She is grateful for these opportunities.

This year, gifts to the academic scholarship drive have the potential to have triple the impact at Mayville State. A very generous anonymous donor has stepped forward and agreed to match all donations to scholarships, up to a total of $20,000, dollar-for-dollar.

Adding originating gifts to the dollar-for-dollar match from the anonymous donor equals the potential for at least $40,000. Add to that the 50% scholarship match provided by the work of the North Dakota Legislature through the Challenge Grant Program, and you’ve tripled the impact of the original $20,000 to $60,000. That’s a serious bang for your buck, and all for an extremely worthy cause. All scholarship gifts received in the academic scholarship drive will qualify for the 50% match from the state, even if the total received exceeds the $20,000 anonymous match challenge. This is a great time to make a gift that will have an even greater impact.

We are truly grateful for the forward-thinking and generosity of the anonymous donor who has committed the $20,000 match. This is a genuine act of kindness that will have a life-changing impact on our students.

We at Mayville State are equally thankful for the generosity of all our alumni and friends. Their support is key to making great things happen at the university and in the lives of individuals. These people are paying forward the goodness they’ve received through their association with Mayville State, and in doing so, changing lives. Their financial assistance in the form of large and small gifts makes a huge difference.

To make a gift to the academic scholarship drive or to learn more about how you can establish an endowment and leverage the power of the North Dakota Challenge Grant, please contact Lon Jorgensen at the MSU Foundation, 701-788-4864 or, or go to