I remember as a freshman being super excited for all the opportunities and everything I was going to learn at college. I knew after touring Mankato’s campus that it just felt like home. I was excited to move into my dorm, learn more about all the different majors on campus, take classes, pick my major, and make friends.
Our campus does an amazing job of preparing you to be successful as a college student and in your future. However, when they explain all the resources our campus has to offer you at orientation, I will say it is a bit of a brain OVERLOAD. It is amazing that our campus offers so many opportunities, clubs, resources, etc., but I know that to many freshmen it can feel overwhelming, and then they never return to the topic again. I am here to make that all easier. I have come up with a quick guide on 5 of the (in my opinion) best resources our campus has to offer for students, and would love to share those with you!
- Student Health Services
You may or may not have heard, but located in the basement of Carkoski Commons is our Student Health Services Clinic. We have an on-campus clinic run by real physicians, with a full service pharmacy, available for students. Anything you would need to get done at your home clinic- a checkup, flu shot, STI testing, etc.- can be done here, on campus! They accept most insurance cards, and any charges can be placed on your E-services to be paid at a later date.
The pharmacy has many over the counter medications for sale at a discounted rate for students, such as ibuprofen or cough medicine, and you can also send your prescriptions from home to the pharmacy there for pickup. I utilize this feature of our clinic, and it is so much easier walking to our campus pharmacy than driving home every time I need to pick up a prescription.
You do not need to pay for a gym membership at another gym in Mankato if you don’t want to! You get a free gym membership to Otto Recreation Center as long as you are taking courses each semester (yes, even in the summer!). You can use their website to reserve workout times in the cardio, weight room, or lap swim/handball areas for free. You can also use their website to register for intramural sports leagues or tournaments, usually for a small fee.
Campus Recreation also offers group exercises classes, available to students for free! This is a great way to be active each week and get out there to try something new. The schedule is up on their website, and they offer a variety of classes, such as multiple kinds of yoga, HIIT, Tabata, and different flexibility and dance classes. This semester they are offering both in person and then some virtual classes when we move online after Thanksgiving break.
MNSU Engage Website
Engage MNSU is a super beneficial website for anyone looking to get involved on campus or in the community. This website (which you log into with your STARID and password) is a site that lists many, if not all, of our campus’s RSO’s (Recognized Student Organizations). You can also find a schedule of different events being held on campus and by the different RSO’s, which you can RSVP to and also see a small description for. This is where I have found several organizations that I have gotten involved in, as well as different volunteer events!
Campus Kitchen MNSU
IF YOU HAVE NEVER HEARD OF CAMPUS KITCHEN, READ CAREFULLY. This is important stuff! Campus Kitchen is located at Crossroads Church (across from Wissink Hall and behind the Performing Arts building). This organization is led by students, and what they do is simple. They take donated food from local restaurants and organizations, and make them into meals for people in the community who face food insecurity. THIS INCLUDES COLLEGE STUDENTS. Any college student facing food insecurities can stop by and check out the Campus Cupboard (where they keep a food shelf stocked with take-home meals and snacks for students). All you need is your MavCard to get some groceries! Currently Campus Cupboard’s hours are Tuesdays 11am-2pm, and Thursdays 10am-12pm.
If you are looking to gain volunteer hours or experience, Campus Kitchen is a great place to contact for that as well. All of their shifts are led by student volunteers, and they always need other student volunteers to help with each shift! You can sign up on their Engage page, or contact them. Another great idea is to follow and like their page on Facebook (The Campus Kitchen at MSU Mankato) to stay updated on the food and volunteer opportunities they are offering to students!
Career Development Center
The Career Development Center is an essential resource for students on our campus to take advantage of. They assist both current and former students with different aspects of their professional lives, such as choosing their major, building their resumes, crafting cover letters and portfolios, searching for internships, applying to graduate school, and many, many other important topics.
You can schedule an appointment to meet with a Career Advisor, and go over many things- a mock interview, resume help, etc. They also have a Career Resource Library, home to books and web resources to help you further their career.
They hold events and fairs throughout the school year. Usually they are held in the CSU Ballroom, but this year they have been holding virtual career fairs! This makes the job fairs even more accessible to students, especially those who do not live on campus. You can check out their upcoming events and register for them on their page on Handshake MNSU. The best way to get there is simply by googling “Handshake MNSU” and clicking the first link! You will log in with your STARID and password.
Those are just 5 of my favorite resources our campus has to offer that I feel students should be taking advantage of! Our campus wants to see you succeed, and they can equip you to be the best you can be- you just need to take that step and use the resources they provide! Good luck to you, my friend!