Andrew Haffner covers higher education and general assignment stories for the Grand Forks Herald. He attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison, where he studied journalism, political science and international studies. He previously worked at the Dickinson Press.
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GRAND FORKS — Leaders of the North Dakota Board of Higher Education opened a Wednesday, Dec. 6, press release with quotes about truth to reinforce their stance on accusations made against the top executive of the state university system. "The truth is rarely pure and never simple," board Chair Don Morton and Vice Chair Greg Stemen wrote, drawing from playwright Oscar Wilde before introducing a joint statement of support for due process and system office staff.
BISMARCK—After initially making no official plans to do so, the governing board of the North Dakota University System will be discussing in its meeting Thursday, Nov. 30, the allegations of discrimination made by a former system leader against NDUS Chancellor Mark Hagerott.
GRAND FORKS—North Dakota's top leader in higher education has rejected accusations that he engaged in gender discrimination and fostered a hostile work environment in university system offices. "We strongly disagree with the former employee's characterization of events," stated Mark Hagerott, chancellor of the North Dakota University System, in a Monday press release. Though he didn't name her in his statement, Hagerott was referring to his former vice chancellor and chief of staff Lisa Feldner, whom he fired "without cause" earlier this fall.
GRAND FORKS — A recent survey of North Dakota University System employees suggests office climate has improved from the contentious mood captured in a 2016 study released earlier this fall — even as a system leader fired in September has begun the process of filing a retaliation complaint. "There's definitely been a culture improvement," said Don Morton, chair of the State Board of Higher Education, which oversees the system. "I think there's more confidence in leadership now."
GRAND FORKS—The University of North Dakota could soon be tearing down another set of campus buildings. The university notified the State Historical Society of North Dakota earlier this month of its intent to demolish Corwin/Larimore and Robertson/Sayre halls, a pair of academic buildings that make up the remaining physical trace of Wesley College, a now-defunct Methodist school whose properties were purchased by UND in 1965.
PORTAL, N.D.—A pair of of nationally known musicians were arrested on marijuana offenses earlier this year after their tour buses were stopped at the Canadian border crossing in Portal, N.D., and are facing court appearances in coming days. Grammy Award-winner Melissa Etheridge and rock musician Todd Rundgren were both stopped at the border on separate occasions while returning to the U.S. from engagements in Canada.
The University of North Dakota's total fall enrollment sits at one of its lowest points so far this decade, but a university admissions leader says there's more to the number than meets the eye.
BISMARCK—The governing body of North Dakota's public university system could be reducing its monthly in-person meeting schedule to a quarterly arrangement—a possibility that has "disappointed" the head of a state faculty organization.
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — Disruption is in the air for the entrepreneurs of UND. The university is coming near to launching its search for a new leader — or leaders — to head up its startup-minded University of North Dakota Center for Innovation and its academic School of Entrepreneurship. Such leaders would likely take the helm in a transitional period for both organizations.
GRAND FORKS—Neel Kashkari, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, made an appearance Monday in Grand Forks as part of a tour of his Midwestern district. Kashkari spent much of the day touring the city with local leaders, making visits in an itinerary that included a talking session with public health experts to discuss the opioid crisis and a walk-about of downtown Grand Forks to discuss recovery after the flood of 1997.