The President's Parent Partnership

Volume 17, Issue 4 -- December 7, 2018 

Dear NMU Parent Partnership Members,

The fall semester is drawing to a close. Final exams begin next week and run through Saturday (Dec. 15). Exam periods are two-hour blocks of time. If you know your student’s class schedule, you can learn when their exams will be at On the Sunday before finals begin, I host an event called Pancakes with the President. This Sunday it will be held from 8-10 p.m. at The Lights Dining. Helping me are many of the NMU Leadership Council. Please encourage your student to take a study break and join us. This is open to all NMU students, not only those who live in the residence halls.

COMMENCEMENT: The commencement ceremony takes place at 10:30 a.m. Saturday (Dec. 15) at the Superior Dome. All are invited to attend; you do not need a ticket. This is the third year that we have had the graduating seniors (December and May) choose the mid-year commencement speaker.  Soon-to-be graduates nominate faculty and staff for the Student Choice Award. This year’s recipient is Dr. Gary Brunswick, an NMU alumnus and longtime marketing professor. You can learn about Dr. Brunswick here. A quick reminder that if your NMU student is graduating and you and family members are attending the ceremony, please arrive early so that you’re not parking when the processional takes place. I hope that everyone in your party who needs lodging has it, but if not, please do not wait until you arrive to try to find accommodations. (Note to parents of May graduates: It is not too early to make hotel/motel reservations for you and your family members.)

UNIVERSITY CALENDAR: Grades for fall courses must be posted by instructors no later than Tuesday, Dec. 18. Northern remains open through Friday, Dec. 21, and then is closed from Monday, Dec. 24, through Tuesday, Jan. 1. The university reopens Wednesday, Jan. 2. The first day of winter semester classes is Monday, Jan. 14. No classes will be held, but the university will be open on Monday, Jan. 21, in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It is intended to be a day of service for NMU students, faculty and staff. Looking ahead, spring break is March 2 through March 10.

INCLEMENT WEATHER: So far, our winter has been pretty mild, but more than likely, there is a blizzard or two in our future. Our students commute from a huge geographical area, so conditions that students face in traveling to the university vary widely and should be evaluated on an individual-by-individual basis. Students who feel road conditions in their area are too dangerous to travel should not attempt to do so, but rather those students need to communicate with their professors and job supervisors regarding their absence from class or work. While NMU won’t close often, when it does, the announcement is posted on the NMU home page, all NMU social media channels and on our so-called BRRR line (227-BRRR, 227-2777), as well as sent to local media, announced on our WNMU public broadcasting stations and sent through the NMU emergency text alert system to those who are signed up to receive NMU’s free emergency text alerts (


TRAVELING IN WINTER:  Winter means driving in snow and on ice. A helpful website is the Michigan State Police Road Conditions site.  Northern has several webcams ( that can help students evaluate weather conditions on campus and in the City of Marquette. ASNMU sponsors a Dozing Discounts program that provides discounts on hotels/motels for students who experience inclement weather or sleepiness when traveling to and from campus for breaks and holidays. The NMU Police Department also holds periodic winter driving lessons behind the Superior Dome. Students can contact NMU PD at 227-2151 to ask when sessions will be held.


CAREER FAIRS: Northern will hold two job fairs in the winter semester. The Summer Employment Fair will be held 1-4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 13 in the Great Lakes Rooms of the University Center. The Summer Employment Fair is an opportunity for companies and organizations to discuss summer jobs, internships and part-time jobs with students. The Winter Semester Job Fair is 1-4 p.m. Wednesday, March 20 in the C.B. Hedgcock Building. The Winter Semester Job Fair brings together students and employers from the Midwest to explore today's exciting job outlook. Many employers will be interviewing students for positions with their organizations. There is no cost for students and alumni to attend either event. Career Services also offers a variety of workshops throughout the semester. The workshop schedule can be found at   


GIVING TUESDAY: Northern held its second NMU Day of Giving on November 27, in conjunction with the global charitable event of Giving Tuesday. NMU alumni, family, friends, employees and students were encouraged to give back to the university in a way that was meaningful to them. A few of the promoted focus areas of need included the Northern Fund, the Flexible Aid Fund, student scholarships and the NMU Food Pantry. I’m pleased to report that we received significant contributions that will increase opportunities and expand access and aid for our students. The University surpassed its goal of collecting 2,000 non-perishable food items and personal hygiene products for the NMU Food Pantry, doubling last year’s total. In addition, the pantry received over $2,500 in cash gifts. Combined, the two represent over 200 bags of groceries for Wildcats in need.  If you participated, thank you.

SEASON'S GREETINGS:  Whatever traditions and holidays you and your family celebrate at this time of year, I hope you have fun and truly enjoy time together. If you are still searching for a gift for your NMU student, go to the Barnes and Noble at NMU website for some great ideas. Other gift ideas from past and present NMU parents include a meal card for non-residence hall students through Dining Services, membership to Marquette’s Peter White Library if your NMU student lives near that facility, a ski/snowboard pass to Marquette Mountain (student season pass for only $99) and gift cards from the businesses that participate in ASNMU’s Wildcat Wallet program


Thank you for your continued support of Northern.


Happy Holidays,

Fritz Erickson, President