Big Event for Big Ideas Campaign

President Davenport, Kurtis Malecha and Lorraine Trevino at Big Ideas Campaign launch

President Davenport, Kurtis Malecha and Lorraine Trevino at Big Ideas Campaign launch

Some of the buzz spilling out of the Centennial Student Union Ballroom on October 27 was related to the impressive technological gadgetry used in the newly remodeled space. Many of the approximately 500 guests walked out of the ballroom commenting on the video displayed on the screens circling the entire room, the phenomenal sound system and the LED lighting.

But in the midst of that amazement, they had something bigger on the minds as well: The official launch of the public phase of the Big Ideas Campaign.

During a 60-minute event that included speeches from a pair of students, President Davenport and others, a rousing campaign video and the Concert Choir singing the University Hymn, the audience was introduced to Minnesota State Mankato’s plan to transform itself, and the world, with the largest comprehensive campaign in the history of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system.

“We truly are poised to become an even greater University,” Davenport told the assembled faculty, staff, students, community leaders and University friends. “One that is not only an engine but a leader in generating solutions for the problems facing our state, nation and world.”

The Concert Choir performs the University Hymn

The Concert Choir performs the University Hymn at the close of the Big Ideas Campaign launch event.

Funds raised by the campaign will fund University-wide partnerships, including Global Solutions Scholarships for students, Global Solutions Grants for faculty and staff and a College of Business Global Solutions Center, which will provide space for cross-disciplinary research teams; they will also support plans for transformational change within each of the University’s six academic colleges and the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics.

Davenport announced that the campaign, which has been operating in its private phase since 2006, has already raised $57 million—a great start to the ultimate goal of raising a total of $75 million. But, he told the audience, reaching such a goal and effecting transformative change both here and round the world won’t happen without their help.

“Will you help make it all possible?” he asked the crowd as he wrapped up his speech.

Find out more about the Big Ideas Campaign and how you can partner with Minnesota State Mankato at