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Anderson finds there's no place like home

Just like the average high school senior, Anthony Anderson wanted to "go away to a big school" and experience an independent university life away from his family and hometown. Born and raised in Minot, Anderson attended private elementary and high school within one mile of each other, graduating in a class of 42 students, most of whom he'd known his whole life. He was ready to spread his wings.

But by the time Anderson graduated from high school, he had several Minot State University courses under his belt, so like his grandmother and mother before him, Anderson enrolled at MSU. "Away" for Anderson began across the street.

"After doing the math and considering the merits of the school, I realized MSU was the right fit and seemed like the smart thing to do," Anderson said.

However, Anderson was not your average college freshman when he began in the fall of 2008. The finance major and honor student was one of only nine students to receive the first Great Plains Exceptional Scholar Awards, a $14,000 scholarship based on high school academic performance, ACT scores and community engagement. He also immersed himself in campus activities and founded Minot Rotaract, a service club which is still active.

Three years later, Anderson can be found everywhere on campus making a difference. He served as a Student Government Association representative for the College of Business; worked in the Gordon B. Olson Library; volunteered as a Student Ambassador; assisted with student orientations; and belongs to the Mu Sigma Tau Fraternity. For the 2011-12 school year, he will serve as editor and staff writer for the Red & Green, MSU's student newspaper. Anderson also volunteered the past three years with Rock the Leaves, a benefit concert, and he acts in the Mouse River Players.

"I know I am a student first and that is my number one priority, "Anderson said. "But I feel that extracurricular activities complement student life and the more you give to one, the more you get back from the other."

Currently Anderson has an internship as a law clerk under Dean Frantsvog, MSU assistant professor of accounting and finance. Anderson finds the research, writing and occasional trips to court very interesting, which reaffirm his desire to attend law school after he graduates.

"Anthony is doing lots of research, which will help with his awareness of the legal profession and what he can expect when he gets out of law school," Frantsvog said. "He is one of those exceptional students who will do well if he sets his mind to it."

"I have gotten a lot out of my experience at MSU and I want to give back," Anderson said. "I love this campus."