MSU President's Newspaper Column

February 27, 2021

It’s a great day to be a Comet!

The spring semester at Mayville State University is off to a great start! We are delighted that we are able to offer on-campus classes and services, even as the coronavirus pandemic continues. I am extremely thankful for our faculty, staff, and students who are doing what they can to help keep our campus community safe and healthy. The number of confirmed active COVID-19 cases and close contacts among MSU students and employees are minimal right now.

While our enrollment dipped slightly this semester when compared to last spring semester, we are in line with or doing better than many other institutions of higher education across the nation. The pandemic is the source of difficulties for many people, and college students are not excluded from this group. Financial hardships, as well as additional family responsibilities, may keep those who might otherwise be enrolled in college from doing so right now.

With the pandemic situation looking more positive as time goes on, we look to the future with great optimism. The number of applicants for admission for the fall semester is up considerably at this point. We know things can change quickly and we are persistent in our efforts to get the good word about Mayville State to prospective students. Our annual Mayville State Mania student recruitment campaign will launch next week.

In light of the pandemic, it is especially difficult to visit high schools through the traditional student recruitment methods. Using their innovation skills and thinking out of the box, our faculty and staff are working diligently to make connections. It’s exciting to see a number of prospective students visit campus every week. If you know someone who would benefit from a great Mayville State education, please encourage him or her to visit us at or to set up an in-person or virtual campus tour by calling 701-788-4842 or emailing

At Mayville State, our dedication to personal service makes a difference for students who value the opportunity to learn and grow on a smaller campus with a family feel. We’re very proud of the fact that faculty, staff, and students know one another on a first name and personal basis. The qualities of personal service that Mayville students experience are attributes they carry with them for the rest of their lives, as they make a difference for others in their careers and the communities where they live.

We continue to work on our strategic growth goals. Analyzing enrollment in programs helps us to make wise decisions about the use of resources. It is of utmost importance that resources are used in areas where there is growth. Shifting resources from low enrollment areas to areas of growth makes good business sense and makes us good stewards of the resources with which we been entrusted. Budgets are lean and it is important that we are razor sharp in our decisions. We have a commitment to serving the needs of North Dakota and using our resources to provide for the workforce needs of the state is the overarching goal in everything we do.

Mayville State is an important economic engine for the local area as well as the state. One of the many ways in which the university is impacting the local area economy is through our commitment to the use of natural gas. Our commitment to this is helping to make it possible for many Traill County residents to have access to this cost-effective fuel source for the first time ever. In order that we may use natural gas at Mayville State, we will need to install natural gas-burning boilers that will help heat the campus for several months of each year. It’s a win-win! The use of natural gas will provide efficiencies for our institution and also for residents and businesses in the county.

Mayville State has requested $1.6 million in capital project funding from the North Dakota Legislature. The funding will allow us to install natural gas burners and pave the way for using natural gas as a heating source, replacing old fuel oil burners on campus. The project will enhance Mayville State’s infrastructure and improve our campus while providing a cleaner footprint for all. When you consider the savings in deferred maintenance costs and combine it with the annual savings in heating costs, it becomes clear that it will not take long for the project to provide efficiencies, making this a wise use of resources.

 Life is good at Mayville State! We are grateful for so many reasons. Our faculty and staff are second to none. Our students are vibrant and amazing, and our extended family of alumni and friends, near and far, are beyond supportive. It’s a great day to be a Comet!