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Office for Student Affairs Points of Pride 2017


  • Several units now have refreshed or revamped web presences: Aurora Center, Boynton Health, Care Manager, LEAD-UP, Multicultural Student Engagement, Off Campus Living, Recreation and Wellness, Student Conflict Resolution Center, Student Counseling Services, Student Legal Service, Student Parent HELP Center (and Gifts for Little Gophers).

  • More than 8,000 students with mental health concerns were advised by providers in OSA units, a nearly 10% increase from last year.

  • A new online resource called Learn to Live was also launched system-wide with more than 4,000 students accessing the service this semester.

  • OSA led or co-led two workgroups as part of the President’s Initiative to Prevent Sexual Misconduct.

  • Following a pilot last spring, the Nutritious U Food Pantry is up and running three days per month. Nearly 1,000 visit the pantry each month where in addition to fresh, nutritious food, students also receive information on signing up for SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits. An OSA-wide effort, SUA is providing both storage space for food, access to a kitchen and space to run the pantry.

  • In mid-November 2017, we hosted six members of the Board of Regents as part of a tour on the undergraduate student experience on the Twin Cities campus. Regents learned about career services, mental health resources, how the student-led renovation of Coffman’s second floor fosters a high degree of co-curricular student engagement and saw the food pantry space.

The Aurora Center

  • Recipient of $4,000 John C. Larsen Foundation Grant to engage more men in prevention work and expand outreach and direct service options to more marginalized groups.

  • Improved services for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community through work with Cornerstone and ThinkSelf under a Federal grant.

  • Aurora Center Director, Katie Eichele, was the guest speaker at Mrs. Kaler's October Women, Wine, and Wise Words event.

  • Honored by the Gopher Marching Band during halftime at the MN vs. WI football game.

  • Homecoming parade attendees cheered on The Aurora Center in the aftermath of the #MeToo campaign.

Boynton Health

  • Mental Health service has successfully filled six new provider positions to manage a 9.2% increase in new patient evaluations (a total of 2,219 new patients evaluated) and an 18.4% increase in visits (8,115 total visits) over the same time period as last year.

  • This is the 2nd fall semester and 3rd consecutive semester that Boynton has successfully served all students seeking access to mental health care without the need to establish a waiting list.

  • The addition of almost 4,000 square feet of new clinical space on the 1st floor of Boynton was a critical factor in accommodating new staff as well as the generous funding support for staff through Student Services Fees and the Provost’s Office.

  • Created a Transgender Health Clinic and launched new training initiatives to enhance care for LGBTQIA people as part of goal is to provide comfortable, culturally responsive and accessible care to transgender and gender non-conforming patients.

  • Planning a pilot to expand Gopher Chauffeur service to six days a week (Monday-Saturday) starting in February 2018. This pilot will be used to determine viability of the service continuation for 2018-19 and beyond.

  • Dogs, horses, bunnies, and of course Tilly the therapy chicken along with an abundance of activities all pitched in to help thousands of students engage in stress management in a truly transformed Coffman’s Great Hall on November 2. Participants engaged with animals, learned to make their own slime, made tea, experienced aroma therapy, engaged in play and much more throughout the day.

Care Manager

  • Handled 166 cases in the 16-17 academic year.

  • Created and promoted use of the ‘Red Folder’ for faculty and instructors, which contains helpful information on mental health resources available to students.

Career & Internship Services

  • Launched a new, thoughtful, coordinated curriculum to prepare students for the transition from college to the work world.

  • Worked to create the Gopher Gold Internship Program, which will allow CIS to partner actively with internship sites to provide high quality internship experiences for students.

  • Tailored career fairs by bringing employers in key industry categories to campus, while increasing student attendance during the Fall 2017 Career Fair.

Career Services Administration

  • Offered the first employer educational webinar regarding sourcing talent from the University, with nearly 400 employers participating.

  • Continued to promote results of the 2016 Employer Survey, including to members of the Board of Regents.

Fraternity & Sorority Life

  • Greek community continued to grow, with over 1,100 students joining this fall.

  • National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC) hosted their inaugural step show during Homecoming week with more than 500 attending, including President Kaler and Mrs. Kaler.

Leadership Minor/Leadership Enrichment

  • Started a new marketing and outreach program called "The Street Team" where current Leadership Minor students interact directly with the community.

  • 27 individuals — the largest cohort yet — started the instructor on-boarding process this fall to be able to teach in the minor in the future.

  • Collaboratively launched a successful first Student Leadership Summit in partnership with SUA and MCSE with more than 125 students attending.

  • Launched the Leadership Educator and Scholar's Network (LESN) with 28 faculty and staff members across all colleges and many OSA units. The Network will allow for sharing best practices and creating an overall assessment plan to measure the leadership development experiences of U of M students among other opportunities.

  • Started a new combined Field Experience and Global Leadership class for Summer 2018 in Croatia, gaining hands-on leadership experience in a global context.

  • Received financial support from the Tom Burnett Family Foundation to support bringing in alumni to facilitate to the Tom Burnett Advanced Leadership Program.

  • Launched a new website to better promote the real-world leadership training and experiences provided by the academic Leadership Minor and Leadership Enrichment Programs.

Multicultural Student Engagement

  • Hosted two events in the Power & Privilege series. Both Dr. Adrienne Keene and Tiq Milan were well received, with tickets for Milan selling out, and garnered positive feedback.

  • Expanded the Social Justice Leadership Certificate to include both a campus-wide cohort as well as the Social Justice Action Living Learning Community, a partnership with Housing and Residential Life.

  • ‘Our Voices’ dialogue group continued to grow and support Indigenous Women and Women of Color undergraduate and graduate woman-identified students.

  • New staff member Daniel Garrison came aboard and met with all the Cultural Center leadership in addition to other accomplishments in the role.

  • With the addition of Sylvia Vue as the newest Student Life Advisor, MCSE is now fully staffed.

Off-Campus Living

  • The Off-Campus Housing Fair brought 1,600 U of M students to learn more about living off campus this fall and meet landlords.

  • OCL staff member Caitlin Herby co-authored  "A Guide for Families of Commuter Students: Supporting Your Student's Success" for NODA, the Association for Orientation, Transition and Retention in Higher Education and the National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition.

  • Launched a new website with updated renter education information related to living off-campus in surrounding neighborhoods and for commuters.

Office for Community Standards

  • Collaborated with Gopher Athletics and the Office for Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action to provide information about Title IX and the student conduct code to every intercollegiate athletic team.

  • Sponsored Academic Integrity Week (Sept. 18-22) with various events and outreach.

Parent & Family Program

  • Held two Gopher Family Connect events (for families who couldn't make it to new student orientation), second annual Families First event (for families of First-Generation students) and collaborated with Orientation and First Year Programs to mail out a Parent & Family Calendar and welcome letter to each family who was not able to attend orientation this summer.  

  • Hosted more than 1,000 families at Parent & Family Weekend in October, with one family being highlighted at the football game.  

  • Collaborated with campus partners, including President’s Emerging Scholars, Admissions, and Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, to incorporate family involvement in supporting students.

Student Conflict Resolution Center

  • Handled 854 cases in 16-17 academic year with satisfaction rate of 88%.

  • Conducted survey on graduate student advising, an expansion on previous surveys on academic harassment that began in 2007.

Student Counseling Services

  • Offered more than 900 Learning Skills Coaching appointments to 200-plus students this fall, marking an all-time high in for the program and increases of 30% and 20% respectively compared to last fall.

  • Ran all 17 counseling groups offered, including a new group “When Home is Hard; Coping with Parents’ Mental Health Challenges,” with increases in students served and number of group sessions held.

  • Increased the number of students served by 6% and counseling sessions provided by 4% in two years with a total of 883 students served across 2,797 sessions.

  • Facilitated four interventions of the University Community Response Team following student deaths, serving 113 University community members.

Student Government, Fees and Spirit Initiatives

  • Oversaw administration of the Student Groups Student Services Fee Committee, which allocated more than $550,000 to 81 student groups for Spring 2018 programming and events.

  • Advised and worked with the Minnesota Student Association, who was successful in working with OSA units on the development a landlord accountability campaign among other accomplishments.

  • Supported ‘We Are...Minnesota’ interns, who have been doing ELITE work! Student attendance at Gopher football games has increased, and the animal population in the Barnyard now includes an Ox, a Sasquatch, squirrels, and a new cat. The interns also recently led a successful effort to host the Big Ten Student Section Conference in June 2018 and look forward to rowing the boat with their peers, along with other groups involved in the National Collegiate Student Section Association.

Student Legal Service

  • Every year, Minnesota Lawyer honors the top attorneys throughout the state of Minnesota for notable achievements. This year the SLS Team was selected as a 2017 Attorneys of the Year honoree.

  • Launched the Emerging Leaders in the Law summer clerkship program for U of M undergraduate students considering a career in the law. This four-week program combined law office experience at SLS, field study (including a visit to the MN Court of Appeals), law school preparation, and critical academic engagement.

  • Supported students displaced by delayed construction to the nearby housing complex, Prime Place, scheduled to house over 400 students by September 2, 2017. Over the next three months, Student Legal Service housing staff worked diligently with the students impacted by this delay and was featured by various local media outlets, including the Star Tribune, Kare 11, and the MN Daily.

  • Provided over 60 programs and presentations to students, staff, organizations and the University community with attendance by over 6,500 people.

  • Celebrated 40 years of gopher justice fighting for student rights with a program addressing "cyber-bullying"  which featured nationally prominent individuals and an attendance of over 100 people.

Student Parent HELP Center

  • Launched first-ever U of M child care assistance grant, awarding a minimum of 43 student parents child care grants who were previously ineligible for funding. This program makes SPHC one of the few programs in the country serving undergraduate, graduate, professional and international student parents.

  • Nearly doubled total number of students served during last three academic terms.

Student Unions & Activities

  • Led efforts to celebrate Homecoming 2017, which featured several events across campus including the annual parade, concert and comedy show, among others.

  • Hosted 5th annual Page.Stage.Engage. event in the Whole that celebrates social justice through spoken word as well as the Drag Show & Dance Party in partnership with the Student Cultural Centers during National Coming Out week in October.

  • Hosted the Student Leadership Summit in partnership with LEAD-UP.

  • Over 32,000 people attended 2017 Homecoming events in celebrating Gopher pride and traditions.

  • The 2017 Spring Jam event sold out with over 7,000 students in attendance.

University Recreation and Wellness

  • Established Recreation, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (REDI) work team to promote awareness of policies, procedures, communications and emphasis areas respecting recreation and wellness for all. Team hosted the "Body Brave" workshop for professional staff to increase awareness around health and wellbeing at any size.

  • Hosted NIRSA Region V Conference with over 175 attendees from across the upper Midwest, including many students.

  • Created a University leadership-endorsed, 5-year plan to incrementally improve the safety and stability of Les Bolstad Golf Course and position it for a larger capital improvement in the future. The course increased rounds played in 2017 by 12.5% compared to the 2016 season and 18.2% compared to 2015.

  • Launched “RecWell Story,” a multimedia platform to share how RecWell impacts lives and campus.

  • Opened new, re-located University Recreation and Wellness Sportsfield Complex

  • Intramural Sports Program worked with internal and external partners to host 30 teams and 487 players in the annual Homecoming Flag Football Tournament.

  • Supported successful seasons for intramural teams of Women's Rugby (national champions), Sailing Club (3rd place nationally) and Men's and Women's Soccer Clubs.

  • Secured nearly $60,000 in sponsorships to support student development, departments, programs, events, and social wellness initiatives

  • Hosted 2,600+ Class of 2021 members for annual ‘Night at The Rec’ during Welcome Week

  • Supported a Youth Programs-record 3,000 campers for summer 2017, with over 700 on waiting lists. Thanks to a Give to the Max campaign, more funds will be available to support campers this coming summer as well.