Thursday Commons Block

No classes have been scheduled for the block of time from 12-2 p.m. each Thursday. This was done to provide an open time that allows the scheduling of a variety of campus meetings, events, or presentations and to encourage greater participation by students, staff, and faculty. The 12-2 p.m. time on Thursdays was chosen because it appeared to have the smallest impact on class schedules. The period has come to be known as "Thursday Commons."

There are some regular meetings that will have a set time. For example, academic departments will meet on the second and fourth Thursday of each month during this time. The Chancellor’s Office will schedule meetings on the third Thursday of the month. The purpose of this time period is to schedule meetings of campus-wide interest; i.e., open forums, campus assembly. The first and, when it occurs, fifth Thursday will be used for special events or meetings. The Chancellor’s Office will coordinate requests for scheduling those time periods. Those two time periods need not be open to all campus audiences and may be used for staff training, meetings of organizations, or for discussions relating to issues in higher education.

The schedule for the current academic year has been established by a group of faculty, staff, and students, and it can be found here. The schedule for the following year will be developed over the next few months. If someone has an idea for a program or speaker, please contact Chris Winjum with information.

We ask for your support and cooperation in maximizing this time period. The intention is to build a stronger campus community by improving communication, engaging faculty and staff in important issues, providing opportunities for training, and conducting campus business.


2018-2019 Thursday Commons Schedule

Date Program
August 30, 2018 Open Time
September 6, 2018 Involvement Expo in Sargeant Student Center showcasing different Student Clubs on campus (Coordinated by Lisa Samuelson)
September 20, 2018 Speaker Odell Bizzell - "Refuse to Lose" 4 Ways to Become a Student Success Story (Coordinated by Lorna Hollowell)
October 4, 2018 Banned Books Event in Sargeant Student Center (Coordinated by Stacie Varnson)
October 18, 2018 Convocation in Kiehle Auditorium (Coordinated by CSA) 
November 1, 2018 Campus Assembly in Bede Ballroom (Faculty Assembly Executive Board)
November 15, 2018 Faculty and Student Research Presentation in Bede Ballroom (Coordinated by Venu Mukku)
December 6, 2018 Holidays Around the World Event in Bede Ballroom (Coordinated by Rae French)
December 20, January 3 NO Thursday Commons (Winter Break)
January 17, 2019 Open Time
January 31, 2019 Faculty and Student Research Presentations in Bede Ballroom (Coordinated by Venu Mukku)
February 7, 2019 We Are Water Ag Forum in Bede Ballroom (Coordinated by Linda Kingery) 
February 21, 2019 Black History Month Event (Coordinated by Black Student Association and Lorna Hollowell)
March 7, 2019 Campus Assembly in Bede Ballroom (Faculty Assembly Executive Board)
March 21, 2019 NO Thursday Commons (Spring Break) 
April 4, 2019 Spring Convocation in Kiehle Auditorium (Coordinated by CSA)
April 18, 2019 Open Time
May 2, 2019 NO Thursday Commons (Finals Week)

2017-2018 Thursday Commons Schedule

  • August 31, 2017 - The Importance of Intercultural Competency in the Workplace in Bede, Karl Lorenz coming to present - (coordinated by Les Johnson)
  • September 7, 2017 - Involvement Expo in Bede (coordinated by Lisa Samuelson)
  • September 21, 2017“Climate Change Presentation/Discussion", with multiple lightening talks and a presentation by Jessica Hellman (and Louis Gilbert)
  • October 5, 2017 - Fall Convocation in Kiehle Auditorium (coordinated by Lisa Samuelson and CSA)
  • October 19, 2017Campus Discussion about the Laptop Computer Program in Bede Ballroom
  • November 2, 2017 - Campus Assembly in Bede (coordinated by Faculty Assembly Executive Board)
  • November 16, 2017 - Murals and Native American Art expert in Kiehle Auditorium (coordinated by Jim Schaar)
  • December 7, 2017 - Research Presentations in Bede (coordinated by Dani Johannesen)

  • January 18, 2018 - open
  • February 1, 2018Internationalizing Teaching and Learning Workshop (coordinated by Kim Gillette)
  • February 15, 2018 - Black History Month Event in Bede (coordinated by Lorna Hollowell)
  • March 1, 2018 - Spring Convocation in Kiehle Auditorium (coordinated by CSA)
  • March 15, 2018 - Spring break - No Thursday Commons
  • March 29, 2018 - Research Presentations in Bede (coordinated by Dani Johannesen)
  • April 5, 2018 - Campus Assembly in Bede (coordinated by Faculty Assembly Executive Board)
  • April 19, 2018 - Earth Week event in Bede (coordinated by CSSD)


2016-2017 Thursday Commons Schedule

Sept. 1, 2016 - Involvement Expo, Sargeant Student Center (coordinated by Lisa Samuelson) 
Sept. 29, 2016 - FBI Speaker on Active Shooter and Intruder Awareness, Bede Ballroom (coordinated by Peter Phaiah)
Oct. 6, 2016 - Fall Semester Convocation, Kiehle Auditorium (coordinated by CSA)
Oct. 20, 2016 -   John Vreyens from U of M Twin Cities - Discussing International Opportunities for Faculty (coordinated by Kim Gillette)
Nov. 3, 2016 - Grants Resource Center, Rich Wellons and Alex Wood from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) (coordinated by Barbara Keinath)
Nov. 17, 2016 - Fall Semester Campus Assembly Meeting, Bede Ballroom (coordinated by Owen Williams)
Dec. 1, 2016 - UMC Research Presentations by Faculty, Staff and Students in Bede (coordinated by Venu Mukku)

Jan. 19, 2017 - Diversity Program in Bede Ballroom C,D,E (coordinated by Lorna Hollowell)
Feb. 2, 2017 - Students vs. Faculty and Staff Campus Showdown in Bede Ballroom (coordinated by CSA)
Feb. 16, 2017 - Discussion of Kiehle Murals (Coordinated by Jim Schaar)
March 2, 2017 - Spring Semester Convocation, Kiehle Auditorium (coordinated by CSA)
March 16, 2017 - Spring Break - no event planned
March 30, 2017 - open - possible Research Presentations
April 6, 2017 - Spring Semester Campus Assembly Meeting, Bede Ballroom (coordinated by Owen Williams)
April 20, 2017 - UMC Research Presentations by Faculty, Staff and Students in Bede (coordinated by Venu Mukku)


2015-2016 Thursday Commons Schedule

Sept. 3, 2015 - Student Involvement Expo in Bede (Lisa Samuelson coordinating)
Sept. 17, 2015 - Title IX Annual Training in Bede (Peter Phaiah coordinating)
Oct. 1, 2015 - Banned Books Event in Bede (Stacie Varnson coordinating)
Oct. 15, 2015 - Fall Convocation in Kiehle Auditorium (CSA coordinating)
Oct. 29, 2015 - Chancellor's Retreat Follow-up/Diversity Program (Peter & Chanc. Office coordinating)
Nov. 5, 2015 - Professional Development/Faculty Onboarding - Stacie Varnson/Les Johnson
Nov. 19, 2015 - Campus Assembly in Bede (Owen Williams coordinating)
Dec. 3, 2015 - Fac/Staff Research Presentation in Bede (Venu coordinating)

Jan. 21, 2016 - Presentation by Canadian Consulate General Jamshed Merchant
Feb. 4, 2016 - Dan Svedarsky coordinating a Sustainability Presentation/Program
Feb. 18, 2016Annual students vs faculty/staff "Campus Showcase" event
March 3, 2016 - Spring Convocation in Kiehle Auditorium (CSA coordinating)
March 17, 2016 - Spring Break nothing scheduled
March 31, 2016 - Fac/Staff Research Presentation in Bede (Venu coordinating)
April 7, 2016 - Campus Assembly in Bede (Owen Williams coordinating)
April 21, 2016 - E2 Survey Results Presentation and discussion (Les Johnson coordinating)
May 5, 2016 - Finals week nothing is scheduled