Sydney Mook has been covering higher education at the Grand Forks Herald since May 2018. She previously served as the multimedia editor and cops, courts and health reporter at the Dickinson Press from January 2016 to May 2018. She graduated from the University of South Dakota with a bachelor's degree in journalism and political science in three and half years in December 2015. While at the USD, she worked for the campus newspaper, The Volante, as well as the television news show, Coyote News. She also interned at South Dakota Public Broadcasting and spent the summer before her senior year interning in Fort Knox for the ROTC Cadet Summer Training program. In her spare time, Sydney enjoys cheering on the New York Yankees and the Kentucky Wildcats, as well as playing golf. If you've got an idea for a video be sure to give her a call!
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Dennis Bona, president of Northland Community and Technical College, boasted that he had "nothing but good news" as he began his annual State of the College address Thursday afternoon in East Grand Forks. Enrollment is up around 6 percent at NCTC, with a student headcount of 3,339 students as of the first day of classes, Bona said. The number includes students at both the East Grand Forks and the Thief River Falls campuses, as well as students taking classes online. Bona added that the goal is to hit 5,000 students by the end of the school year.
UND President Mark Kennedy spent last week in Asia, speaking with leaders from oil and gas industries in China and participating in a conference with other leaders from across the globe in Japan. Kennedy flew to China at the request of petroleum engineering department chair Vamegh Rasouli to meet with a delegation from Sinopec, a Chinese oil and gas enterprise based in Beijing. He also met with the China University of Petroleum during his visit. "Both meetings were very good, and we're looking forward to more collaboration with both parties," he said.
A committee of the State Board of Higher Education has approved a request by UND to sell the former Ray Richards Golf Course, but the full sale of the course still has a few more steps before it is official. The nine-hole golf course, named after a UND alumnus who died in 1972, was shut down in November 2016. The land was a farm that was donated to the university in 1962 with an understanding that it be used as a golf course named after Richards.
UND's oldest academic building is getting a new lease on life. The State Board of Higher Education approved a fundraising effort for the renovations of Babcock Hall, Gustafson Hall and Carnegie Hall during their last meeting in September. Babcock Hall, the university's oldest standing academic building, will become the home of the electrical engineering and computer science department, said current dean Hesham El-Rewini. The building also will be a hub for big data research on campus.
UND students take top honors at conference Two UND undergraduate researchers recently took home first-place honors for a geography-based study on food accessibility in rural North Dakota. Phoebe Eichhorst and Zachary Seeger received the top prize in the undergraduate student category for their research poster at the annual meeting of the Great Plains-Rocky Mountain Division of the American Association of Geographers. Their research project was titled "Identifying Food Deserts in Rural North Dakota: A GIS-Based Analysis of Food Accessibility."
BISMARCK—Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler said the process for filling two openings on the State Board of Higher Education is changing slightly because of the resignation of Greg Stemen, the board's vice chairman. Stemen and another board member, Nick Hacker, were each serving four-year terms that are set to end June 30, 2019. However, after the resignation of Stemen last month, Gov. Doug Burgum must appoint someone to fill his position for about six months.
The body of a man possibly in his mid-20s was discovered next to North Washington Street Tuesday morning in Grand Forks, police said. Sgt. Travis Benson said there were no obvious signs of foul play, but the body will be taken to the Grand Forks County Coroner's Office for further examination. “On the surface there was nothing that would suggest any sort of foul play, any sort of trauma or anything that we’ve seen so far,” Benson said.
Democrat Kylie Oversen and Republican incumbent Ryan Rauschenberger will face off for the state tax commissioner role this November. The tax commissioner office oversees six divisions dealing with tax law, revenue collection and fiscal management, among others. The tax commissioner has a four-year term in North Dakota and is up for election during midterm election years.
The Bank of North Dakota could serve as an oversight committee for a potential $100 million investment in the state's two research universities, UND President Mark Kennedy said Thursday. Kennedy, along with North Dakota State University President Dean Bresciani, have been promoting a proposal to invest $100 million in research at the two universities over two years. Each school would get $25 million a year under the proposal.
UND President Mark Kennedy is making a trip to Asia this week to meet with leaders from oil and gas industries in China and to speak with other global leaders at a conference in Japan. Kennedy is set to spend a few days in China before flying to Tokyo on Oct. 9 for the G1 Global Conference. Kennedy will return to the United States on Monday. Kennedy departed for the trip over the weekend, Meloney Linder, UND vice president for marketing & communications, confirmed Monday.