President's Letter

Dear Alumni and Friends,

 

maybe it's the legacy of our founder, Solomon Comstock, who was a successful businessman in addition to being a state legislator. Maybe it's the can-do attitude we demonstrated when Old Main burned to the ground in 1930 and we found a way to reopen for classes just a week later. Maybe it's our heritage as a Normal School that has seized every opportunity to adapt and evolve to meet the needs of our region.

Whatever the reason, Minnesota State University Moorhead seems to produce more than its share of successful entrepreneurs. And, increasingly, our graduates fuel the entrepreneurial ecosystem that is flourishing in Fargo- Moorhead. Some of the most successful start-ups in our community were founded by MSUM alumni who credit their education for their success.

Our academic programs certainly play an important role. Exceptionally strong programs in business and computer science–along with innovative programs in visual and media arts–provide a platform for entrepreneurial success. Students in non-business programs can earn a certificate or minor in entrepreneurship. And all students benefit from the interdisciplinary focus of the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.

But it's more than that. There's an entrepreneurial spirit at MSUM that both attracts and helps create successful founders. It's a spirit that fuels our faculty and staff as they strive to ensure that MSUM provides an extraordinary education. And it's a spirit that propels our students to explore, take risks, and, ultimately, discover their passions. I attribute that spirit to our core values of grit, humility and heart.

Grit means setting big goals and having the tenacity to achieve them. Humility means understanding that the best ideas can come from anywhere. And heart means being passionate about a purpose. All three of these qualities are essential to entrepreneurial success–and absolutely central to being a Dragon.

Grit. Humility. Heart. They're recurring themes in the stories of the entrepreneurs featured in this issue of Moorhead Magazine. Watch for them as you read about founders who overcame failure, innovators who understood how to approach problems from the customer's perspective, and start-ups fueled by a passion for improving our world.

I hope you're as inspired as I am by the big ideas and bold thinking of the alumni profiled in this issue. And I hope you're equally inspired by the grit, humility and heart that made those big ideas a reality. Our core values define us and connect us across time and distance. They make me proud, always, to call myself a Dragon.

Best wishes,

Anne