Mennem named new MSU Native American Center director
Annette Mennem, Minot State University alumna, is the new Native American Center director at her alma mater. She began her duties Aug. 17.
According to Mennem, she is officially living the dream.
"I am working my dream job. Ten or so years ago, I told Wylie Hammond (retired Native American Center director) 'Someday when you retire, I will sit in your chair'," Mennem said. "I am here and my goal is to help Native American students reach their goals and be successful with whatever they set out to be."
Mennem grew up on the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation, and her ancestors were Ojibway. She received an associate degree from Turtle Mountain Community College and a bachelor's degree in education and a master's degree in management from MSU. Before returning to MSU, she was the director of administrative support services at the Quentin N. Burdick Job Corp Center, where she acquired eight years of experience working with students from diverse populations.
Mennem wants to represent Native American people and represent them well. She especially wants to set a good example for younger people. Growing up, her role models were family members Carol Davis, retired TMCC vice president; Ken W. Davis, past tribal chairman; and Willie Davis, a disability services consultant.
"I believe in the '90-10 Rule.' I will be with students, assisting, guiding and getting to know them, 90 percent of the time. Then, I will be at my desk 10 percent of the time to provide support where needed," Mennem said. "When teaching diverse people, it is essential to understand their culture and tradition, thus, understand to be understood."
Mennem's goals for the Native American Center are to enhance what is in place and to nurture students and build relationships. She wants to uplift students throughout the process.
Mennem will also be an advisor to the Native American Cultural Awareness Club and a member of the MSU Diversity Committee.
To contact Mennem, call 858-3365 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.