The President's Parent Partnership

Volume 13, Issue 1 - July 25, 2014


Dear NMU Parents,

In a few days I will have completed my first month as your Northern Michigan University president, and what a month it has been.  I wanted to send a quick hello and a brief introduction to the members of the NMU Parent Partnership now that I’ve been on campus for a few weeks. I cannot tell you what an honor it is to have been chosen as president of NMU.  There are so many amazing things happening at this university, in the Marquette area and around the Upper Peninsula.  My wife, Jan, and I are excited to be a part of it all.

I imagine that some of the reasons I chose to come to Northern are the exact same reasons your daughters and sons chose NMU. High-quality academic programs, caring and committed faculty and staff, and outstanding student activities are just a few.  Each day I am learning more about our university and where and how I can get involved and make a difference.  I hope your NMU student is actively engaged or, if new to the campus, will become actively engaged members of the university family and the Marquette community.  Jan and I have found both to be incredibly welcoming.

There are also many opportunities for you, as NMU parents, to create in your own special Northern Michigan University experience.  I look forward to meeting many of you when you come to campus for events, sporting contests, Homecoming Weekend (Sept. 26-28), Family Weekend (Oct. 17-19), commencement (Dec. 13 and May 2), and just plain old ma-pa visits.  You can also participate in many NMU activities via streaming broadcast, as well as stay abreast of issues through campus media (North Wind, WUPX, WNMU Public Broadcasting), and share your comments, questions, testimonials and expertise.

Not only as a long-time university faculty member, administrator and provost, but as a father of two recent college graduates, I have first-hand knowledge of the good and bad of being a university parent.  I know that one of the most important things to you is having access to clear, understandable information about deadlines, campus decisions that impact your student, costs, academic news, as well as rules, regulations and university procedures your son or daughter will encounter.  Having been the dad asking the questions and trying to figure out the accurate details of university situations,  it is my goal to make sure that this newsletter provides you with timely information and points you to online NMU resources and contacts that will help you help your child navigate his or her collegiate journey.

In just a few short weeks, many of you will start packing your vehicles to move your NMU student to Marquette for the 2014-15 academic year.  I know the big job ahead of you.  Please know that if you are moving onto campus, there will be a large contingent waiting to help when you arrive. Jan and I will be there, too.  Don’t be shy in introducing yourself and your family.

If your NMU students are home this summer, I hope you enjoy these last few weeks prior to the start of the fall semester.  All time spent with family is precious and shouldn’t go unappreciated.  I’ll send another issue of the newsletter soon with more start-of-the-semester details, but for now, I just wanted to say hello.  It’s going to be a great year to be a Wildcat!


Fritz Erickson, President
Northern Michigan University