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Alumni Office Finds New Home and New Staff

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Alumni Office Finds New Home and New Staff

The Alumni Relations offices have moved! Previously located in the Darland Building, the staff is now settled in the recently renovated Chester Park Building, situated on the southeast corner of campus. The former elementary school was purchased by UMD in 2006, remodeled in 2009, and now houses 7 other programs in addition to Alumni Relations. The Alumni relocation was prompted by the addition of staff and the desire to be more conveniently located for alumni who wish to stop for a visit, attend meetings and get campus information.

Chester Park has close, convenient parking with driveway entrances near the intersection of College St. and Woodland Ave. and at Clover St. and Woodland Ave. Chester offers an event space inside and will soon add a large, outdoor terrace. In addition, there are several meeting rooms with UMD catering options available. The two-story building includes a variety of UMD departments and professionals including Communicative Sciences and Disorders, Sea Grant, Fine Arts Academy, College of Liberal Arts researchers, College of Education Human Services Professions – Language Immersion Program, Music – both band and vocals, U of Mn Auditors, and as of February 2013, the Alumni Relations offices.

Alumni Director, Lisa Pratt, is excited about the move and states “Our new home is in a perfect spot, especially if the main entrance road to campus is reconfigured in the next couple of years, as indicated on the recently updated master plan.

We’re Here to Help! Meet the Staff:

The Alumni Relations office staff is comprised of Lisa Pratt, Director, Christiana Kapsner, Assistant Director, Ashlee Hartwig, Communications Associate, Megan Nelson, student worker and the potential of one or two student interns.

Christiana Kapsner is the Assistant Alumni Director, previously employed at UMD as the Public Relations Associate in External Affairs. Kapsner is pursuing a graduate degree through the Master of Advocacy and Political Leadership program. She graduated in 2005 with a degree in English and a minor in Psychology. Before working at UMD, she was a public relations and marketing consultant for local businesses in Duluth. She is married to her best friend of 12 years, has two lovely daughters as well as a 90-pound husky named Rika and a one-year old golden retriever, Maple. Years ago, before kids, she and her husband owned three lizards, ten fish tanks, and three cats.

Ashlee Hartwig is the Communications Associate in the UMD Alumni Relations office. She moved to Duluth five years ago to attend UMD for her undergraduate studies and recently graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in theater and a Bachelor of Arts in journalism. She doesn’t know why anyone would want to leave a city that offers such a beautiful lake. She’s slightly addicted to social media and keeping up with the trends. Her newest social media obsession? Instagram! The Alumni Relations office will soon be on board, so stay tuned for lots of picture updates. Ashlee is a huge movie buff which makes the Academy Awards her Super Bowl Sunday.

Megan Nelson is currently a student worked in the UMD Alumni Relations office. A student of the Swenson College of Science and Engineering, Megan will graduate in the spring of 2014. She started working in the alumni office as a freshman, and they have held on to her since.