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 - A total of 119 UND faculty and staff members have applied to take part in buyout and phase-down plans intended to cut the university's personnel costs. The open call for voluntary and phased resignations was the second to hit campus in as many years and is one of many methods now being used to bridge an expected funding shortage of about $16 million, a result of falling state revenues.
GRAND FORKS, N.D.—An online petition started by University of North Dakota students to protest the administrative approach to campus budget cuts labeled university President Mark Kennedy as "unqualified and unfit" to represent the institution. UND senior Madison Berns, a philosophy student, said she and a group of students drafted the change.org petition because they felt "our voices haven't been heard at all" in the reduction process. The petition states administrators have "kept the students in the dark about their plans to gut our liberal arts programs."
EMERSON, Man.—Canadian authorities intercepted 21 people crossing into Manitoba from northern North Dakota and Minnesota this weekend, continuing a trend of foreign nationals seeking refugee status in Canada. The Royal Canadian Mounted Patrol said it intercepted two groups of people crossing into Canada near Emerson directly north of Grand Forks on the Red River. The first group of five people was discovered Friday. A second group of 16 individuals was intercepted Saturday morning.
DEVILS LAKE -- Daniel Michael Two Hearts, a fugitive accused of firing a handgun at a state trooper and stealing at least three vehicles, was taken into a hospital late Friday after engaging in a standoff with police in Devils Lake and shooting himself. According to a statement from the Ramsey County State’s Attorney’s Office, officers evacuated a downtown apartment building where Two Hearts, 23, was located along with the immediate area. While law enforcement was negotiating with Two Hearts to give himself up, a gunshot was heard in the building.
BISMARCK — A bill introduced Tuesday in the state Legislature could pull North Dakota University System sexual discrimination cases from the public record.
GRAND FORKS — A strategic planning committee is honing goals for the future of the University of North Dakota even as the institution draws closer to an estimated $16 million budget cut, UND President Mark Kennedy said. The group is "largely on track" for a late spring completion of a roster of goals for university improvement, Kennedy said Tuesday, Jan. 31. The conclusion of the plan would roughly coincide with the state Legislature's finalization of its own duties of setting budget appropriations for higher education institutions in the North Dakota University System.
GRAND FORKS, N.D.—University of North Dakota student groups held a campus vigil Monday afternoon as a show of support for international students, faculty and staff who may be affected by President Donald Trump's recent executive order restricting travel to the U.S.
BISMARCK — A bill set for debate by House legislators Tuesday, Jan. 24, could reject the concept of "safe spaces" in North Dakota higher education by bolstering protections for speech and expression. Rep. Rick Becker, R-Bismarck, sponsor of House Bill 1329, said the proposed chapter is responding primarily to conversations about free speech in higher education occurring beyond the North Dakota University System.
GRAND FORKS, N.D.—Higher education leaders in northeast North Dakota are searching their budgets for any fiscal slack as they look to likely reductions in state funding. Alice Brekke, University of North Dakota vice president for finance and operations, said UND is in the midst of an internal planning process to determine the best means to handle the prospect of future budget cuts.
GRAND FORKS - UND employees received a buyout offer Wednesday to voluntarily resign their posts or "phase down" their workload. The university announced a series of limited-time voluntary separation programs aimed at reducing staffing costs in light of expected state funding cuts for higher education. Both faculty and staff members are included in the program offerings. The window for submitting an application for a buyout opened Jan. 18 and will close Feb. 15.