Dragon Stories

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From Landlocked to Marine Biologist

Savanna Hohenstein, from landlocked Western Minnesota, pursued her passion for marine biology at Minnesota State University Moorhead (MSUM), where she engaged deeply with the Marine Ecology Lab. After co-authoring a research paper and dedicating herself to the lab, she graduated in 2020 and undertook multiple unpaid internships in Florida and Mississippi. Her dedication led her to a full-time role as a Rescue Biologist at Clearwater Marine Aquarium in 2022, where she now leads rescue efforts for injured marine animals. Her journey, marked by resilience and adaptability, inspires MSUM's new Marine Aquarist certificate program, encouraging future marine biologists.

A Piece of the Ocean: The MSUM Oceanarium's Metamorphosis

From a visionary school trip to community partnerships, MSUM's Oceanarium continues to embrace growth and change.

MSUM Students Use Film and Animation Skills to Bring Holiday Cheer

The holiday video is always a shining example of our students’ creativity, skills and patience for intricate work.

Dragons Who Serve: Molly Johnson

Today we honor veteran Molly Johnson, a senior at MSUM studying ecology and evolutionary biology with a geospatial analysis emphasis. Molly is from Moorhead and was inspired to join the military through her family, as many of them also served. Her sister Heidi was in the army band prior to moving to Colorado and her other sister Ali served as an Air Force medic. Molly’s mom worked as a social worker for soldiers at the armory in Fargo and her father is captain of the Fargo Fire Department. 

Planetarium Job Leads To NASA Career

2022 marks the MSUM Planetarium's 50th anniversary. After a half century of inspiring a curiosity in what exists beyond our sky, the people behind the Planetarium honor its significant milestone by sharing the historical orbit of this community asset.

Faculty, staff innovation rewarded with Minnesota State grants

Several MSUM faculty and staff members’ innovative ideas were chosen as finalists to receive funding for projects based around diversity, equity and inclusion. These projects included small seed (up to $10,000) and large seed ($25,000) categories.

Soaring Research Leads to National Honor

MaryJo Nelson, ecology and film major, received the Goldwater Scholarship for her research and continues to combine her passion for science and film in nontraditional ways. 

Goldwater Nominees

MSUM students Bridgett Grosz and MaryJo Nelson have been nominated for the 2021 Goldwater Scholarship. The Goldwater Scholarship is a highly competitive national award for students pursuing a career in science, mathematics, or engineering. Winners are expected to be announced at the end of March. 


Foundation Board Member Feature: Dayna Del Val

Meet Dayna Del Val, a proud Dragon with strong ties to MSUM and a passion for the arts in our community. The 1995 theatre graduate is the President & CEO of The Arts Partnership and has served on the MSUM Foundation board of directors since June 2020.


The NCCWSL Conference: Empowering Student Leaders

Thanks to a collaboration between the Women’s Center and the College of Business, Analytics and Communication, five MSUM students had the opportunity to attend their National Conference for College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL) virtually earlier this spring.

Pollinator Garden to Bring New Life to MSUM

Surrounding the hummingbird statue on campus, the pollinator garden gives students the opportunity to bring native plants to MSUM.

MSUM Ed.D Grad Works to Address Critical Teacher Shortage

When schools in the region began holding classes online earlier this year, Tonya Greywind embraced it as another day in the classroom.