MSU President's Newspaper Column

April 10, 2021

Grateful for opportunities to celebrate

It’s beginning to feel a little more like normal. As the COVID-19 situation stabilizes and vaccines become more widely available, there are more activities for students, including athletic contests, intramural sports, student life events, and more. We continue to offer Rapid Antigen COVID-19 testing daily on campus and the number of positive cases and close contacts is extremely minimal. We can’t let our guard down, but we are thankful for the stability.

Four of our varsity athletic teams, volleyball, football, softball, and baseball, are in full regular season swing. Stay up-to-date with Comet Athletics at

Volleyball has had an outstanding season, with games played both in the fall and in the spring. The team is now involved in post-season competition. We wish them well as they keep moving forward toward the goal of the conference championship.

Football will be finishing up their season with a game at Presentation College in Aberdeen, S.D. on April 10 and a game against Dakota State in Madison, S.D. on April 24.

Softball currently has an overall record of 7-13 and a conference record of 3-5. Their regular season will wrap up with a game versus Dickinson State at Jerome Berg Field on May 1. The conference tournament begins May 6 at Bellevue University in Nebraska.

Baseball’s current overall record is 17-8 and their conference record is 6-2. The Comets will complete regular season play on May 4 when they meet up with North Dakota State University at a game in Fargo.

Last week, the Division of Science and Mathematics hosted a second Agribusiness Activity Day. About 15 area high school students were on campus to explore the world of agribusiness. In addition, Drew Combs, Executive Director of the North Dakota Trade Office and Brad Thykeson, 1986 Mayville State graduate and State Executive Director of USDA Farm Service Agency, spoke to the high school students, as well as Mayville State students enrolled in an international business course. Area business owners and farmers were invited to join in the conversation with Combs and Thykeson at a noon lunch.

We’re excited to host more high school students on campus when they participate in the regional small group music competition on April 8. We value every opportunity to have high school students and others visit our campus.

Commencement 2021will take place on May 15. We are thrilled to be able to hold an in-person event this spring. You may recall that because of the COVID-19 pandemic situation, we had to postpone last year’s commencement until the fall. We will be following social distancing guidelines and masks will be required, so things will still look a little different, but our graduates will have the opportunity to walk across the stage and be recognized for their efforts. It will be a wonderful day.

We are delighted that Michelle (Worner) Kommer, 1995 Mayville State graduate, will deliver this year’s keynote commencement address. Kommer recently became owner, CEO and president of HighRoad Partners, an agency specializing in HR and insurance solutions for individuals and small businesses. She resigned from her position as North Dakota’s commerce commissioner in 2020 after serving four years in Gov. Doug Burgum’s administration. She also served as labor commissioner and executive director of North Dakota Job Service.

The return of spring also signals what we have always known as a time of celebration and activity. We are grateful that we are able to partake in some of these activities that we missed out on last spring due to the pandemic. We look forward to sharing special times and celebrating the end of the academic year as a campus community.