Mayville State President’s Column for Traill County Tribune

September 23, 2017

May-Port EDC granting matching funds in project to install artificial turf at Jerome Berg Field


In 2012, the MSU Foundation was fortunate to receive a challenge grant that would reduce the cost of installing turf at Mayville State’s Jerome Berg Field (football) and Scott Berry Field (baseball) from $2.6 million to $1.3 million. A campaign to raise the $1.3 million needed is fully underway and making great headway. We’re just $150,000 away from bringing an artificial turf football field to Mayville State!

These turf fields are very important to the future, as they will help us to bring more local and regional student athletes to Mayville State. The economic impact tied to the fields makes them a much larger priority than even the game value to the players. Protecting the financial stability and growth of the university benefits not only the students, but also the community of Mayville-Portland and Traill County.

The Mayville-Portland Economic Development Corporation has granted a one-time $50,000 matching fund challenge to help us reach the $150,000 needed to reach the first-phase goal. Every dollar given to the turf project from now until Dec. 31, 2017 will receive a 50% match from the EDC. If we can raise $100,000 in the current appeal, we’ll receive $50,000 in matching dollars, and that means the first phase of our fund-raising campaign for turf at Jerome Berg Field is complete!

Would you consider making a one-time gift to bring this campaign to completion before the end of the year?

Here are the key benefits of the turf football field:

  • It will help us recruit more local players who will play on this field for high school games.
  • It will save $55,400 a year in field maintenance costs.
  • Every athlete brings $62,000 a year in economic impact to Mayville-Portland, and a full roster of 120 students represents $7.44 million in economic impact.

The number of students who will be impacted by this project is big. It includes not only student athletes, but also those who are enrolled in Health, Physical Education, and Recreation (HPER) courses and are not student athletes.

In 2016, there were 129 students majoring in Health, Physical Education, and Recreation (HPER), and 76 students pursuing a minor in HPER. These students make up 18% of the student population. HPER majors include Sports Management, Fitness and Wellness, Health and Health Education, and Physical Education. Many HPER course instructors could utilize the turf throughout the year to conduct units in their classes that are not possible to do on unlevelled or muddy ground. Due to its level and safety-inducing cushion, the turf becomes ideal for class use and begins to take the strain off other already-crowded indoor facilities.

We have beautified and improved so many areas of the campus. We’ve made things safer, drier, prettier, and much more functional. In the last several years, we have learned that facilities do matter because the physical amenities of a campus play a big role in the college selections of students. This is especially true for student athletes who come to play a sport while they pursue their degrees. We’ve got to make these two fields a reality to protect our tuition revenue, our enrollment, and our students with this far-safer alternative.

I hope you will take a look at this project and help make MSU a highly competitive campus for those students who come right from our own backyard. We can’t afford to jeopardize our future by being complacent with the facilities while we watch other area schools take these students away. We owe it to Mayville State’s great coaches Jerome Berg, Harvey McMullen, Al Meyer, and Lewy Lee, who blazed a trail for us, to make this happen. Let’s do it for them!

We are deeply grateful to all the alumni and friends who have already given to the project, and if you haven’t already made a contribution, we hope we will be able to count you among these generous donors soon. You can make a contribution to the effort by sending your check to the MSU Foundation, 330 Third Street NE, Mayville, N.D., or by going online to For more information, contact Brock Sherva at the MSU Foundation, 701-788-4679 or Thank you very much for considering a gift to this important project.