Sydney Mook has been covering higher education at the Grand Forks Herald since May 2018. She previously served as the multimedia editor and cops, courts and health reporter at the Dickinson Press from January 2016 to May 2018. She graduated from the University of South Dakota with a bachelor's degree in journalism and political science in three and half years in December 2015. While at the USD, she worked for the campus newspaper, The Volante, as well as the television news show, Coyote News. She also interned at South Dakota Public Broadcasting and spent the summer before her senior year interning in Fort Knox for the ROTC Cadet Summer Training program. In her spare time, Sydney enjoys cheering on the New York Yankees and the Kentucky Wildcats, as well as playing golf. If you've got an idea for a video be sure to give her a call!
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GRAND FORKS -- The recommendation to split North Dakota’s higher education governance into three boards is receiving mixed support from legislators and higher education officials. Members of Gov. Doug Burgum’s Higher Education Task Force voted to advance the concept of a three-board governance model for the state’s 11 colleges and universities on Tuesday, Nov. 13., after almost 10 months of discussions and meetings.
BISMARCK — North Dakotans were projected to elect six incumbents to statewide seats in Tuesday’s election, including longtime attorney general Wayne Stenehjem. Stenehjem, a Republican, beat Democratic candidate David Thompson for his sixth term.
GRAND FORKS -- The use of fake identification to purchase alcohol has been going on for decades, but those fake IDs are only getting better and easier to obtain, officials say. Fake IDs have “absolutely” gotten better over time, University of North Dakota Police Lt. Danny Weigel said. “I think as the technology improves, you see better watermarks underneath the IDs, and when you move them toward light they reflect differently; those have gotten better in the five, six, seven years,” he said.
GRAND FORKS — Potential changes to the North Dakota University System’s tenure policy have been delayed after faculty questioned the proposal’s financial impact. The change would give the State Board of Higher Education discretion to allow incoming, out-of-system presidents and deans to keep tenure they had previously earned at another institution. Presidents would get the tenure if they decided to return to the classroom and teach after being in the leadership position.
BISMARCK—Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler said the process for filling two openings on the State Board of Higher Education is changing slightly because of the resignation of Greg Stemen, the board's vice chairman. Stemen and another board member, Nick Hacker, were each serving four-year terms that are set to end June 30, 2019. However, after the resignation of Stemen last month, Gov. Doug Burgum must appoint someone to fill his position for about six months.
GRAND FORKS - The body of a man possibly in his mid-20s was discovered next to North Washington Street Tuesday morning, Oct. 9, in Grand Forks, police said. Sgt. Travis Benson said there were no obvious signs of foul play, but the body will be taken to the Grand Forks County Coroner's Office for further examination. “On the surface there was nothing that would suggest any sort of foul play, any sort of trauma or anything that we’ve seen so far,” Benson said.
GRAND FORKS — Democrat Kylie Oversen and Republican incumbent Ryan Rauschenberger will face off for the state tax commissioner role this November. The tax commissioner office oversees six divisions dealing with tax law, revenue collection and fiscal management, among others. The tax commissioner has a four-year term in North Dakota and is up for election during midterm election years.
GRAND FORKS—University of North Dakota Aerospace Dean Paul Lindseth has filed a document accusing Provost Tom DiLorenzo of being disrespectful and treating him (Lindseth) differently than other deans. The memo was sent to Pat Hanson, director of human resources at UND, on Sept. 15, and it specifically names DiLorenzo. It came two weeks after aviation faculty voted 32-0 in favor of a resolution of no confidence in DiLorenzo.
GRAND FORKS—The head of the University of North Dakota's aviation department said he still believes that President Mark Kennedy should remove Provost Thomas DiLorenzo from his position. Last week, the aviation department called for Kennedy to remove DiLorenzo as provost in a detailed, two-and-half page resolution. The resolution was passed by aviation faculty 32-0, with two members abstaining. Kennedy penned a letter last week to department chairman Jim Higgins and the department outlining their concerns and plans to address them.
GRAND FORKS — No criminal charges will be filed in a Grand Forks County crash involving two drivers from Fargo that resulted in the deaths of two children in March. The Grand Forks County State’s Attorney Office has declined charges against Trista Curry, who was driving an SUV, and Michael Soyring the driver of a tractor-trailer. The two drivers were involved in a March 25 crash on Interstate 29 that caused the death of Curry’s two sons, 1-year-old Maxwell and 9-year-old Camden. Curry and her 3-year-old daughter, Avalon, were injured.