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Viewpoint: An exciting time at the University of Minnesota Crookston

Once again, thanks to our faculty, staff, students, alumni, families and friends, as well as the community of Crookston.

Mary Holz-Clause
Mary Holz-Clause
We are part of The Trust Project.

A big shout out to all who helped our community this past month. As you probably saw in the photos, our faculty, staff and students were among the hundreds who heeded the call for help. Our community is stronger when we all work together.

My favorite time of the year has arrived, graduation. Earlier this month, UMN Crookston celebrated its 55th commencement ceremony, which is also the 114th ceremony on the Crookston campus dating back to the Northwest School of Agriculture – a residential high school that still includes many alumni across the region, state, and country. From fall 2021 to fall 2022 there are a total of 444 students who/have/will graduate. There were 250 graduates this spring.

We had the honor of hosting United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack as our commencement speaker. The Crookston campus has a long legacy of agriculture and education, and we strive to do our best to serve the region, state and country as a land grant institution with the mission of teaching, research and outreach. Many of you will remember our northern Minnesota native, the late Bob Bergland, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture from 1977-81. His wife, Helen, and daughter, Dianne Dah,l were very special guests in addition to the Secretary.

UMN Crookston, along with our valued partners, the Regional Extension Office, the Northwest Regional Sustainable Development Partnership (NWRSDP) the Agricultural Utilization Research Institute (AURI), and the Northwest Research & Outreach Center (NWROC), continue to strengthen the region's research and outreach tailored to northwest Minnesota’s agriculture communities. We are grateful for these partnerships.

Last week we welcomed more than 60 students to campus to compete in the Northern Great Plains Youth Institute, an official World Food Prize event. Participating students traveled from Wyndmere, N.D., and in Minnesota, from Grand Rapids, Roseau, Badger, Greenbush, Middle River, Ada, and Crookston High School. What an exciting time!

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I want to thank our faculty and staff for their dedication and enthusiasm over the past year, as we prepare for the end of the semester. I am deeply grateful to the volunteer service of our Campus Advisory and Advancement Board (CAAB) and the American Indian Advisory Board. Both groups work to strengthen the relationship between the University of Minnesota Crookston and the region by providing insight to help direct decision-making, develop opportunities for collaboration, and build relationships leading to greater understanding.

Once again, thanks to our faculty, staff, students, alumni, families and friends, as well as the community of Crookston. Thanks to each of you for your continued support and service to the University of Minnesota Crookston.

Mary Holz-Clause is the chancellor of University of Minnesota Crookston.

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