Thursday, September 18, 2014

Mortar Board Kicks off True Blue Game Days

The Xi Phi Chapter kicked off their year long True Blue Game Days Campaign on Tuesday, September 16th at the Volleyball Game against Fort Hays State University.  True Blue Game Days was created to help foster school spirit and promote student attendence at home sporting events.  Throughout the day, Mortar Board members passed out flyers to students wearing "loper blue" or other UNK appearal.  At the game, students could turn in the flyers at the Mortar Board booth for a chance to win raffle prizes donated from community businnesses.  Mortar Board will team up with other campus organizations to sponsor six more True Blue Game Days throughout the school year.

Mortar Board members Rachel Nozicka, John Gibbs, and Kelsie Post help staff one of the booths at the first True Blue Game Day event. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Meet the New Members!

Margaret Jackson (Red Cloud, NE)
Major: Criminal Justice and Political Science
Involvement:  Resident Assistant, Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and Locke and Key Society.

Matthew Lenagh (Omaha, NE)
Vice President
Major: Industrial Distribution
Minor: Marketing and Management
Involvement: Wrestling Team, Thompson Scholars, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Rachel Nozicka (Ravenna, NE)
Major: English, emphasis in Writing,  and Philosophy
Involvement: Sigma Tau Delta English Honor Society, Honor's Program, and Undergraduate Research Fellows.

Lindsey Eubanks (Cambridge, NE)
Major: Exercise Science
Minor: Public Health and Pre-Dentistry
Involvement: Health Science Club, Undergraduate Research Fellows, Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society, and American Student Dental Association.

Billie Kunzman (Alliance, NE)
Director of Communications
Major: Business Administration, emphasis in Marketing
Minor: Spanish
Involvement: Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority, Order of Omega, and Student Senate.  

Jessica Albin (Lincoln, NE)
Major: English, emphasis in Writing
Minor: Professional Communication
Involvement: Honor's Program Mentor, Undergraduate Research, Antelope Newspaper Editor, Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and National Residence Hall Honorary.

Morgan Kristensen (Minden, NE)
Membership Selection Chair
Major: Political Science
Minor: Public Health
Involvement: Alpha Phi Sorority, Chancellor's Ambassador, and Student Diplomat.

Britt Jensen (Fremont, NE)
Alumni Chair
Major: 7-12 Biology Education
Minor: Chemistry
Involvement: Track and Cross Country Teams, Chancellor's Ambassador, and Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity.

Megan Brown (Scottsbluff, NE)
Major: Elementary Education
Involvement: Honor's Program, Psychology Club, Student Education Association of NE, and Elementary Educators Club.

Daniel Carlson (Grand Island, NE)
Major: Music and Organizational Communication
Involvement: Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity, Pride of the Plains Marching Band, and Thompson Scholar Peer Mentor.

Chesany Eberle (Seward, NE)
Major: Psychhology
Minor: Biology
Involvement: Alpha Phi Sorority, LPAC, Special Olympics Volunteer, and ARC of Buffalo County.

Haley Gunnink (Crookston, NE)
Major: Early Childhood, emphasis in Communication Disorders
Involvement: Panhellenic Council, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, Order of Omega, Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and Cornerstone.

Jonathan Hess (Imperial, NE)
Major: Psychology, emphasis in Marketing and Management
Involvement: Chancellor's Ambassador, Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity, Order of Omega, and Asian American Student Association.

Heidi Hostert (O'Neill, NE)
Major: Exercise Science
Minor: Public Health, Marketing, and Management
Involvement: Alpha Phi Sorority, Honor's Program Mentor, and Undergraduate Research Fellows.

Kaitlyn Liberty (Omaha, NE)
Major: Communication Disroders
Involvement: Alpha Phi Sorority, Honor's Program, Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and National Student Speech Language Hearing Association.

Summer Liu (Qingdao, China)
Major: Physical Science and Geography Education
Minor: Music
Involvement: Student Education Association of Nebraska, International Student Association, and Resident Assistant.

Bethany Lueck (Arcadia, NE)
Major: Chemistry, emphasis in Biochemistry
Involvement: Sigma Xi, Friends of Socrates, Chemistry Tutor, and Student Summer Research Program.

Cole Manhart (Highlands Ranch, CO)
Major: Criminal Justice
Involvement: Criminal Justice Honor Society, Football Team, and Student Athlete Advisory Committee.

Tessa Mannlein (Kearney, NE)
Major: Communication Disorders
Involvement: Alpha Phi Sorority, Kearney Student Speech Language and Hearing Association, Order of Omega, and Gold Torch Society.

Kelly Messbarger (Kearney, NE)
Major: Biology and Pre-Pharmacy
Minor: Health Science
Involvement: Cross Country and Track Teams, Health Science Club, Honor's Program, and Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society.

Kelsie Post (Beatrice, NE)
Major: Pre-Pharmacy
Involvement: Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, Cornerstone, and Order of Omega.

Connor Schulte (Kearney, NE)
Major: Organizational and Relational Communication
Minor: Advertising and Public Relations
Involvement: Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, Panhellenic Council, Student Body President, and Nebraska State Student Association.

Katee Rocheford (Howells, NE)
Major: Elementary and Special Education
Involvement: Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, Student Diplomat, St. Jude Up Till Dawn, and Martin Hall President.

Rachel Wemhoff (Columbus, NE)
Major: Biology
Minor: Women's Studies
Involvement: Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority, Health Science Club, Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, and the Honor's Program.

Carly Wollman (Omaha, NE)
Major: Communication Disorders
Involvement: Alpha Phi Sorority, Student Senator for Student Government, Order of Omega, and Gold Torch Society.

John Gibbs (Lincoln, NE)
Major: Sports Administration, emphasis in Coaching
Involvement: New Student Enrollment Team, Newman Center Council, and Thompson Scholar Mentor.

Sarah Maginnis (Odell, NE)
Major: Mild-Moderate K-12
Minor: Language Arts 7-12
Involvement: Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Society, Alpha Xi Delta Sorority, and Student Diplomat.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Senior Advisor Amber Messersmith Recieves National Award

Mortar Board Xi Phi Chapter Senior Advisor Amber Messersmith won the prestigious Excellence in Advising Award at the Mortar Board National Conference in Atlanta, Georgia last week. The recognition was awarded to the top three advisors from more than 230 chapters across the nation.

Messersmith's students nominated her for her dedication to the organization.  She takes the time to get to know each member and fosters a sense of community within the chapter.  Students also noted that she is present at all chapter activities and continuously encourages them to go above and beyond, always proving to be an inspirational force. 

Mortar Board Earns National Recognition

Xi Phi Chapter President Maggie Jackson and Senior Advisor Amber Messersmith, second and third from left respectively, received the Ruth Weimer Mount Chapter Excellence Award at Mortar Board National Conference.  Also pictured are Section Coordinator Kristi Okerlund from the University of North Dakota, far left, and president of Mortar Board National Council Martha Starling, far right.

The Xi Phi chapter of Mortar Board won the organization’s highest national honor, the Ruth Weimer Mount Chapter Excellence Award, at the Aug. 1-3 Mortar Board National Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.  The award is presented each year to the nation’s single most exceptional chapter.

The Xi Phi chapter of Mortar Board also received the Golden Torch Award, which is awarded to 24 chapters that contribute meaningful scholarship, leadership, and service to their institutions. UNK has received the recognition 15 out of the last 16 years.

In addition, Xi Phi won nine Project Excellence awards, given to chapters for notable achievements in scholarship, leadership, fundraising, service, and involvement. The recognized projects were: Faculty Appreciation Dinner, Campus Cleanup, Freshman and Sophomore recognition event, Fuel Around the Fountain, Last Lecture Series, Outstanding Freshman and Sophomore Awards, Reading is Leading program, True Blue game days, and Veteran's Day letter writing event.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

2013-2014 Outstanding Sophomore Sends Appreciation

Sophomore Mallory Placek was awarded the Rosenlof and McKenzie Outstanding Sophomore Scholarship during the new member initiation last April.  After receiving her award, Mallory wanted to send her thanks to all of the Mortar Board Alumni who made this scholarship possible.  

Dear Alumni,

Thank you for your generous donations that help fund the Mortar Board Outstanding Sophomore Scholarship that I received this last spring.  I was humbled to receive such an honorable scholarship.  Thank you for all of your encouragement and support that you give to the students of UNK. 

This upcoming fall I will be a junior at UNK studying both Spanish and Organizational and Relational Communications.  I will be participating in the Peru Study Abroad trip this spring to further my Spanish major and enhance my Spanish speaking and listening skills, as well as experience an entirely new culture.  I am excited to spread my wings and be pushed outside of my comfort level.  I know that Peru will offer me new and sensational opportunities that I will never forget. 

Again, thank you for supporting me.

With appreciation,
Mallory Placek

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mortar Board Receives University Awards

On Thursday, Apr. 25, the Office of Student Life and Division of Student Affairs hosted the 3rd annual Applauding Excellence event. Mortar Board and those affiliated with the group proudly took home multiple awards!

First, the group was honored with Outstanding Collaborative Program for its True Blue Game Days campaign.

Members of Mortar Board on hand to accept the Outstanding Collaborative Program Award, many of whom were nominated and received other awards during the program as well (l-r): Jordan Bloesser, Karlee Nuttelman, Amanda Swenson, Nicole Connor, Michael Christen, Chaney Black, Adam Kahle, Blair Youngs, and chapter advisor Amber Messersmith

Second, Chapter President Michael Christen was honored as Outstanding Organization Leader. This marks the second time (in the three years of this event's existence) that this award has gone to a Mortar Board member! All leaders in nearly 200 UNK student organizations are eligible to be nominated for this award.

Michael (left) accepts his award from Dean of Student Affairs, Dr. Joseph Oravecz (right)

Finally, the chapter's senior advisor, Dr. Amber Messersmith was humbled to win the Outstanding Student Organization Advisor award, for which the chapter surprised her with their nomination. 

More information about the other award winners may be found at the following link:

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Initiation 2014

The Xi Phi Chapter held its initation ceremony on Friday, Apr. 11 at the Museum of Nebraska Art. This formal event is always bittersweet, as we say goodbye to the outgoing class as well as welcome the new group.

Thanks to all of the family members, friends, and members of the UNK community who joined us to celebrate Mortar Board!

A great looking group of new and outgoing Mortar Boarders!

We wish the 2013-2014 group all the best as they graduate and begin the next chapter of their lives. Thanks for all of your hard work this year!

The torch has been passed to this capable and accomplished 2014-2015 group (plus a few individuals are not pictured). We have 27 terrific students who exemplify scholarship, leadership and service entering the group.
Check back next school year to see how they continue serving the UNK and Kearney communities!