I think North Dakota State is a great school. That may seem odd to hear from me, a graduate of the University of North Dakota, but it is how I feel.
Granted, I think both are great schools. Personally, I have never had much concern for school rivalries.
However, in the spirit of homecoming, I will refrain from saying anything positive about my alma mater and instead focus on what it is that I like about NDSU.
My experience at NDSU has been different from that of most students.
I arrived here in the fall of 2010, not as a graduate student, but as a chemist in the Research and Technology Park.
I had just received my B.S. in chemical engineering from UND. However, with the job market being what it was in 2010, this was the only job offer I was able to find.
Luckily, everything worked out in the long run as I remain employed there to this day.
Suffice it to say, my experience at NDSU has largely been confined to the tech park; however, I do not see this as a negative thing.
Over the years it has become apparent to me how valuable the tech park is not only to NDSU, but also the Fargo-Moorhead community — and even the state of North Dakota.
The tech park offers many job opportunities in technical fields such as science and engineering that may not otherwise exist in this community. This has benefitted not only the full-time workers, but the numerous undergraduate and graduate students who have been employed here over the years as well.
I have seen many examples where people, when faced with either the prospect of losing their jobs or desiring to move on, have simply moved across the street to one of the many businesses residing in the tech park.
Education is another valuable resource provided by the tech park.
As an NDSU employee, it was a relatively seamless transition for me to enroll as a part-time graduate student in the materials and nanotechnology program during the fall of 2013. As an added bonus, I was able to apply the research I was already doing for my job toward my master’s thesis.
Furthermore, I have realized that the tech park is not something that had to be created. Instead, people consciously chose to dedicate their lives towards making the tech park what it is today. I am sure many continue to do so behind the scenes.
I cannot speak for the NDSU campus as a whole. To be honest, I have not been to a Bison game in years, but from what I can see, this is a great school.
I do not know what the future has in store for me, but even if I do end up moving on, NDSU will always be as important to me as UND was.