Thursday, September 15, 2011

Saint Mary’s moves up in U.S. News ‘Best National Universities’ ranking

Saint Mary’s continues to move up in the annual U.S. News & World Report rankings of best colleges and universities.

Saint Mary’s is ranked No. 177 by U.S. News in the National Universities category for 2011, moving up six slots from No. 183 in 2010.

The ranking of more than 1,500 schools is available online at Results were announced today, Sept. 13.

“Saint Mary’s is a new kind of university for the 21st century,” says Brother William. “We are a national university committed to academic quality and relevance, and to educating our students for ethical lives of service of leadership — at every program level.”

U.S. News placed Saint Mary’s in the first tier of the “National Universities” category, which includes a total of 280 schools in two tiers. This grouping includes schools that offer a wide range of undergraduate majors, as well as master’s and doctoral degrees. This is the fifth year Saint Mary’s is ranked in this category.

Taking top honors in the “National Universities” ranking are Harvard University, Princeton University, Yale University and Columbia University. Saint Mary’s is one of only three public or private schools in Minnesota in this category.

U.S. News categorizes schools primarily by mission and region, and ranking data is gathered from each institution on indicators of academic excellence.

Young Alumni Weekend a great success

Alums enjoyed music on the Plaza during Young Alumni Weekend.
Drs. Scott and Karen Sorvaag met with a couple of alums during the Friday social.

Throughout the the weekend, Sept. 9-11, nearly 200 young alumni returned to the Winona campus to participate in weekend events. Alumni spoke in classes and made presentations (in history, computer science, business and public relations departments), attended a welcome gathering with Brother William and faculty/staff and enjoyed entertainment from student and young alumni bands on the Plaza. They also challenged themselves on the rope course and disc golf course and participated in many more fun activities.

A huge thank you goes out to faculty and staff for attending activities throughout the weekend. Young alumni enjoy reconnecting and catching up with their favorite faculty and staff. To view photos from the weekend, go to

Alums, student athletes honored at ‘M’ Club Weekend

Sports information director Donny Nadeau was honored during the Cardinal 'M' Club ceremony.

Hall of Fame inductees enjoyed time on the golf course during Cardinal 'M' Club Weekend.

For the second year in a row, Andrew Brueggen (Holmen, Wis.) and Sarah Gardner (Rochester, Minn.) were named Saint Mary’s Outstanding Male and Female Athletes.

The awards were announced at the Cardinal ‘M’ Club Sports Hall of Fame and Awards Ceremony on Sept 10.

Additionally, Sara Harstad (Chatfield, Minn.) and David Feather (Oak Creek, Wis.) were named SMU’s Outstanding Male and Female Scholar Athletes.

Saturday's festivities also included the induction of three new members into the Sports Hall of Fame, as the Cardinal ‘M’ Club, in association with the Saint Mary's Alumni Office, welcomed the Class of 2011 — Nate DeMars ’98 men’s hockey), Frank Savino ‘98 (men’s hockey) and John Redpath ’98 (men’s hockey) — into the Hall.

Sports information director Donny Nadeau was also honored, as he was presented with the MIAC’s Mike Augustin Award for his outstanding contributions and years of service to both Saint Mary’s and the conference.

To see pictures from the event, go to

Terrance Simien kicks off Page Series tonight

The 25th season of the Page Series will kick off with the sweet southern sounds of Louisiana with Terrance Simien and the Zydeco Experience Friday, Sept. 16, at Saint Mary’s.

The event, set to take the stage at 7:30 p.m., will be held in Page Theatre.

Incorporating his hypnotic blend of Zydeco, New Orleans funk, and reggae-flavored Afro-Caribbean sound, Terrance Simien aims to propel you out of your seat and have you dancing in the aisles.

For more than two decades the Grammy-award winning artist, an eighth-generation Louisiana Creole, has been shattering the myths about what his indigenous Creole Zydeco music is and is not. Leading his Zydeco Experience Band, Simien has become one of the most respected and internationally recognized touring and recording artists in roots music today.

He has performed over 5,000 concerts, toured to over 40 countries and reached at least a million people during his eventful 25-year career. In December of 2009, Disney Pictures released a Pixar animated film, “The Princess & The Frog,” set in New Orleans, which was scored by Randy Newman and features the music of Simien, Terence Blanchard and Dr. John.

Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for seniors and students and are available online at or call the box office, Ext. 1715, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. $10 student rush tickets may be available for some events 20 minutes before curtain.

Saint Mary’s is a fiscal year 2011 recipient of an Institutional Presenter Support grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board. This activity is funded, in part, by the Minnesota arts and cultural heritage fund as appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on Nov. 4, 2008.

‘Inspired by Japan’ now on display

“Kamakura Omikuji” by Preston Lawing of Saint Mary’s University is one of the pieces in “Inspired by Japan,” now on display at Saint Mary’s Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries. When visiting a Shinto temple, you may receive a fortune (Omikuji). If it is bad (Kamakura), you can tie it on a rope outside the temple, and the priests will burn them at the end of the day, sending the smoke “back to heaven.” The written words are “earthquake” and “tsunami.” This print is saying, “We do not accept this disaster as our fate, and we continue to be strong.”

After the devastating earthquake and tsunami in March of this year, artists and printmakers from around the world gathered to produce a suite of prints titled “Inspired by Japan” to raise money for relief efforts. Their work — including a print by Preston Lawing, chair of the Department of Art and Design — is now on display at SMU’s Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries.

This exhibition — which will run through Sunday, Oct. 2 — brings together 60 printmakers in a show that will run concurrent with several other venues including South Africa, Japan, Poland, Michigan and Oregon.

For several centuries, Japan has been famous for the Ukiyo-e style of woodcut printmaking. These 60 artists, who work in the relief form of printing (carving away parts of the woodblock, and printing the raised portion), produced limited-edition prints to be donated and sold to raise funds for disaster relief in Japan.

The Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries are open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and are free and open to the public.

Mass of the Holy Spirit to be celebrated Monday

On Monday, Sept. 19, SMU will celebrate the annual Mass of the Holy Spirit at 12:10 p.m. in the Saint Thomas More Chapel.

Speaker to address Kwik Trip’s success Sept. 22

John McHugh, director of leadership development for Kwik Trip Incorporated, will discuss how the Wisconsin-based company evolved into an industry leader Thursday, Sept. 22, at Saint Mary’s.

The event, hosted by the Kabara Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies, will begin at 3:30 p.m. in Salvi Lecture Hall.

Kwik Trip began in Eau Claire, Wis., in 1965. Since that time, Kwik Trip has grown to more than 400 stores with 10,000 coworkers in three states and has been named a “Top Workplace” in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

A commitment to innovation means that Kwik Trip is a convenience store company unlike any other. Kwik Trip not only serves customers with convenient, clean retail centers, but also produces many of the private label products featured in the stores. Kwik Trip’s La Crosse-based headquarters operates its own commissary, bakery, and dairy and also maintains its own distribution center and fleet under the Convenience Transportation name.

McHugh’s presentation is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Trevor Hall at Ext. 6978 or

MCA begins tuition-free Adult Arts Wellness Program

The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts is offering tuition-free dance, fitness, and music classes to adults through the MCA Adult Arts Wellness Program.

Parents who have a child enrolled in a dance or music class/program at MCA may participate in their own class at no additional cost. Class options for parents include: Nia, Clogging, Power Piyo, Teen and Adult Ballet, Teen and Adult Tap and Jazz, and Adult Flute Choir.

All classes and programs are held at MCA’s Valéncia Arts Center, 1164 West 10th St. Classes begin this week. Registration is currently being accepted at the Valéncia Arts Center, by mail, or online at

To accommodate the busy schedules of working parents, as well as stay-at-home parents, MCA adult classes are offered during the noon hour and in the late afternoon and evenings.

The Nia class, a fitness class for all levels, offers a dynamic blend of dance arts, martial arts and healing arts. Nia is held on Tuesdays from noon to 1 p.m. at the same time as MCA’s Creative Music class for 3- and 4-year-olds. Parents can sign up their young children for Creative Music while they enjoy the Nia fitness class.

Clogging I is offered for beginners on Mondays from 5:15 to 5:45 p.m., follow by Clogging II from 5:45 to 6:30 p.m. for those with experience.

Power Piyo is a Pilates and yoga combination class focusing on yoga postures and Pilates strengthening to offer the perfect conditioning class. Power Piyo is held Mondays from 4 to 5 p.m.

Teen and Adult Ballet, held on Mondays from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., provides an introduction to ballet technique, allowing adult students to experience the artistry of ballet while gaining flexibility, placement, strength and fluidity.

Teen and Adult Tap and Jazz provides adult students with an introduction to tap and jazz dance, offering a rhythmic-filled class and a great workout. This class is held on Tuesdays from 7:45 to 8:45 p.m.

MCA also offers music programming for adults through the new MCA Flute Choir. The flute choir is open to all community flutists of various performance levels. Flute choir members will study and perform a variety of music from serious recital pieces to fun seasonal/pops favorites. The flute choir will meet on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.

This activity is made possible in part by a grant provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board, through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature from the Minnesota arts and cultural heritage fund with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on Nov. 4, 2008.

For more information about MCA visit, e-mail or call Ext. 5500.

NHL player to speak Tuesday about giving back

Shjon Podein, NHL player, Stanley Cup Champion and King Clancy Memorial Trophy winner, will speak at Saint Mary’s Tuesday, Oct. 11, about “Hard Work, Perseverance and Giving Back.” The SMU community is invited to have dinner with Podein at 5:30 p.m. in the cafeteria. His presentation will begin at 7 p.m. in the Common Room.

The event is sponsored by Student Life. For more information, call Nikki Richmond, at Ext. 1643.

Cochran to present next biology seminar

Dr. Phil Cochran will present “Adaptive Management of Timber Rattlesnakes in Southeastern Minnesota” at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, in Room 112 of Hoffman Hall.

Chris Kendall to perform at Winona Arts Center

Chris Kendall and the Coulee Kings (Mark Gunderson and Tom Moncrieff) combine forces for an evening of musical story telling Saturday, Sept. 17, at 7:30 p.m. at the Winona Arts Center. Admission is $5.

SMU alum to host upcoming children’s workshop

SMU alumna Emerald Hulsing will lead an upcoming children’s workshop on Goyataku, the art of fish printing Saturday, Sept. 24, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Boats and Bluegrass Festival on Prairie Island. No preregistration is required. The event is open to all children and their parents. Children under the age of 8 must have a parent/adult accompanying them.

Cancer benefit for Jim Klinger is Oct. 22

A cancer benefit will be held for Jim Klinger, (Maintenance Department) at 4 p.m. Saturday Oct. 22, at the Witoka Ballroom. The event will include a live and silent auction, bake sale and chicken dinner.

If you would like to help with the benefit by volunteering that day, baking for the bake sale or by donating items, contact Nikki Richmond Ext. 1643 or Sandy Moger at Ext. 1436.

Jazz notes

Swing Inc. will perform 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 16 at Signature’s Restaurant and from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17, at the Hoiland Mill in Rushford.

Dance Repertory Company II auditions are Sept. 17

The Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts will conduct auditions for the Dance Repertory Company II winter concert, at noon Saturday, Sept. 17, at the Valéncia Arts Center, 1164 West 10th St.

Auditions are open to beginning- and intermediate-level dance students ages 5 to 13. Boys and girls will be cast in concert dance pieces in one or more of the following genres: classical ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, and modern dance.

Parents are asked to accompany children to the audition and bring a photo of their child and planning calendars. Auditioning students should wear proper dance attire.

The DRC II will present winter concerts, Dec. 2-3, 2011 at the Valéncia Arts Center Academy Theatre. The concert will feature the DRC II members who train at MCA, as well as the MCA high school and college students in their choreographic debuts, presenting their own works as part of their semester-long choreography class.

Dance Repertory Company and the DRC II are the youth performing troupes of the Minnesota Conservatory for the Arts. Company members participate in rehearsals, technique classes (which began Sept. 12) and stage performances.

For more information about the DRC II or other programs, visit, e-mail or call Ext. 5500.

Mississippi River cleanup is Saturday

The 31st annual Mississippi River Revival cleanup is 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17, at Latsch Island. A free lunch will be provided.

Participants are asked to wear gloves and old clothes. Boats are needed.

The cleanup starts at Latsch Island Beach. Volunteers will go out in boats and remove trash and pollutants such as treated wood, discarded tires and metals from islands, shorelines and dikes.