January 2015

In the Know

Jan. 11 - Residence Halls Open
Jan. 14 - Classes Begin
Jan. 19 - No Classes, Offices Closed
Jan. 23 - Last Day for Registering/Adding Classes



First Year Seminar

Get acclimated to campus. Set the tone for your college career. Prepare for your future profession. Class takes place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:20 to 10:20 a.m. Register for A&SC 111 through the Advising Center at (406) 657-2240.

Steven Peterman

Students work on a project in First Year Seminar in the fall of 2014.




Get Fit!

So you put the Freshman 15 out of your mind in the fall. You ordered late-night pizza, helped yourself to the dessert bar in Rimrock Café, and enjoyed the delicious free food at various campus events. But now you’re wishing you could get back on track. MSUB Rec Activities can help you do just that!

Meet with a personal trainer at a time that fits into your schedule. It costs $30 for a 60 minute session. Or, work out with a buddy for $50 per session for the two of you. Plus…

Check out these Intramural Sports:
- Men’s and Women’s Basketball: Rosters due January 21
- Three Point Contest: January 22
- Racquetball Tournament: February 12 and 13
- Softball Homerun Derby: March 11
- Co-Ed Softball League: Rosters due March 19
- Co-Ed Indoor Soccer: Rosters due March 19
- Ultimate Frisbee Tournament: Rosters due March 31st.

Call (406) 657-2884 or email aaron.murrish@msubillings.edu for more information.




Success Coaching

Get that extra motivation you’ve been seeking! Learn new academic strategies. Interact with a College Success Specialist who’s been there, done that. Contact Assistant Director for First Year Experience Chad Kruckenberg at (406) 657-2021 to get connected with your College Success Specialist for success coaching during the spring semester.




Jacket Fact

Construction of McMullen Hall was completed in December of 1935. It was the first building on campus. Before then, classes were held in downtown Billings (MSUB website).




Please send any BuzzFeed questions, comments, or ideas to gillette.vaira@msubillings.edu.

MSU Billings logo

Get Involved

Check out these Power of One Week events:

Monday, January 19:
9:50 a.m. – Bell Ringing Ceremony, Peaks to Plains Park

Tuesday, January 20:
6 p.m. – Freedom Writers, Petro Theatre
8 p.m. – Erin Gruwell lecture and book signing, Petro Theatre

Wednesday, January 21:
11:40 a.m. – Vanessa German Artist Discussion, LA 311
2 p.m. – Martin Luther King, Jr. 101 Workshop, McD 163
4:30 p.m. – Vanessa German Performance, LA Lobby

Thursday, January 22:           
7 p.m. – Tunnel of Oppression, Petro Hall Lobby

Saturday, January 24:                       
9:30 a.m. – Service Saturday, SUB Atrium

Jaclyn Tobin Photo

Wingin' It

Columnist Jaclyn Tobin, Third-Year Yellowjacket

As we all know, the New Year is infamous for stirring up change. Believe me, college students know all about the urge to change bad habits overnight—especially after final grades are posted! No matter how your last semester panned out, there are a few pointers that can help you keep the tempo or step it up:

Make practical goals: Perfection isn’t a great aspiration. Instead, start with your weaknesses. A little effort in those areas will make a huge difference in your performance—and your self-confidence.

Learn from your falls: Missing assignments, failing grades, or drained motivation? Whatever the case of your fall semester, learn from it! Make time to put more effort in these areas, and those pitfalls won’t keep you.

Get Supplied: If your schedule is filled with dense or unfamiliar classes, start with the simple things; prepare what you can prepare. Collect the tools like textbooks, highlighters, notebooks, pencils and such, so you are as ready as you can be for whatever this semester holds. Saving up money for coffees definitely helps with the early-morning classes, too!

Contact education major and student leader Jaclyn Tobin.

College Corner



- Check the spelling of your professor's email address.
- Write clearly in the subject line.
- Use salutations.
- Proofread.
- Be polite.
- Be succinct.


- Assume your professor is using the D2L email system.
- Expect a response within the hour.
- Discuss several topics in one email.
- Send multiple emails to the same person within a short timeframe.
- Write anything you could regret. Emails are not private.
- Email if you can connect in person or by phone.

You’ll discover more about a College Success Specialist and his or her awe-inspiring collegiate experiences in each issue. Soak it up. You can’t get this kind of quality expertise just anywhere.

You’ve been told how important it is to form working relationships with your professors. But connecting with professors goes beyond the classroom. At some point in your college career, you’ll probably need to send an email to your professor. This can get a little tricky.

College Success Specialist Jennifer Pope has worked as an adjunct faculty member and currently teaches courses at MSU Billings. She recommends taking a formal approach when emailing instructors.

“Look at the syllabus,” she said. “Does it say doctor or not?”

She also advises keeping the language in the email professional, even if you’re experiencing a stressful situation.

“How you act in person should also be how you conduct yourself through email,” Pope said. “If you act entitled or if you’re overly demanding and use offensive or defensive language, you’re probably not going to get the response you’re looking for because it comes across as threatening.”

Pope suggests proofreading before sending an email, just as you would before submitting an assignment.

“Be conscientious about grammar, typos, text, and speech,” she said. “It’s a form of professional communication.”

Remember to close positively and professionally. Seal the deal with a “thank you.” Of course, sign off with your first and last name, as well.

Be Money Smart

Elizabeth Almann

Columnist Elizabeth Almann, Financial Education Success Specialist

Keep in mind these two important deadlines so you can be considered for the most money possible for the next academic year:

TIP: Complete by January 15 to give references time to submit recommendations.

You don’t have to pay back scholarships. They reduce your stress, they reduce your debt, and they are FREE. Complete the MSU Billings scholarship application in order to be considered for any scholarships through MSUB for which you may qualify. Consider researching and applying for outside scholarships, as well.

It takes most students about an hour to write the essay and complete the online MSU Billings scholarship application. In the essay, highlight your goals, achievements, campus involvement, and financial need. Be specific if you have special circumstances affecting your finances that are not reflected in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

Ask three professionals (professors, bosses, College Success Specialists, etc.) to serve as your references. List their names and email addresses in the application. Explain to your references that they can expect an email to which they must respond by February 1. It may be helpful to provide them with your résumé or a list of your activities. Remember to send each of your references a thank you note.

TIP: It’s helpful if you (and your parents, if you are a dependent student) can file taxes by February 15 and use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. If you can’t file taxes before March 1, complete the FAFSA using estimates.

The FAFSA is available for the 2015-16 academic year starting January 1, 2015. The FAFSA is used to award need-based free aid and various types of student loans. The FAFSA is a free application and takes most people about 20 minutes to complete. Read the definitions of the terms carefully. Ask specific questions using the chat feature provided. If you have financial need as determined by the FAFSA, you will increase your chances of being awarded a grant if you apply early. To file the FAFSA, go to www.FAFSA.gov.

If you have questions about either the MSUB scholarship application process or the FAFSA, contact Financial Aid & Scholarships at (406) 657-2188. You can alsocontact Elizabeth Almann at (406) 657-1795. Feel free to check out other resources at www.msubillings.edu/BeMoneySmart.

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