Tuesday, Sep. 17th, 2019

Montana Science Olympiad youth competition now open for registration; new teams encouraged

Registration is now open for the Montana Science Olympiad, one of the state’s largest and longest-running science competitions for youth. The event will be held Tuesday, Nov. 26, at Montana State University in Bozeman.

At the event, middle and high school teams from around Montana will compete against other schools in rigorous, standards-based challenges across a range of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) topics. The top middle school and high school teams will go on to compete at the national Science Olympiad in North Carolina next May.

“Like any sports or music competition, the Science Olympiad rewards teams that collaborate, practice and prepare,” said Suzi Taylor, director of the MSU Science Math Resource Center, which hosts the event. “Because so many challenges require diverse skill sets, students with all talents — from building to writing to analyzing maps — can compete and excel. This is also a chance for the 1,400 student participants to get a glimpse of college life as they tour the MSU campus and interact with students, staff and faculty.”

This year, as part of MSU’s Year of Undergraduate Research, the Science Olympiad will honor MSU’s student researchers, many of whom are former Science Olympians or current Montana Science Olympiad volunteers.

Teams can choose from 14 different events for middle school and 14 for high school. New contests this year include astronomy, food science, detector building and chemistry lab, among others.

Students compete as teams, not individuals, and teams must be affiliated with a school. Coaches can be teachers, parents or community members. New teams are encouraged to join. The deadline to register is Friday, Oct. 18.

The Nov. 26 event also requires more than 200 volunteers and relies on sponsorship from industry partners. Potential volunteers as well as business and organizations interested in sponsorship can email mtscioly@montana.edu.

For more information, visit montana.edu/smrc/mtso.

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Give Back to the Symphony, One Apple at a Time


This fall, Lockhorn Cider House is inviting our Gallatin Valley neighbors to bring apples from their backyard trees to press into a specialty hard cider, the "Bozeman Backyard Blend". 

10% of the proceeds from the finished specialty cider will be donated to The Bozeman Symphony!

Bring your apples (and crabapples) to the Lockhorn Cider House in Downtown Bozeman from Sept. 15 - Oct. 3rd in exchange for a FREE CIDER. 

In celebration of Montana Cider Week, Lockhorn will host a Community BBQ and Apple Pressing Event on Fri., Oct. 4th at the Lockhorn Orchard (7131 Springhill Community Rd). 

Fresh pressed and hard cider will be available!

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Monday, Sep. 16th, 2019

Anderson Haunted House: Forest of Terror

The Anderson School District marked its 125 birthday this year and they'll celebrate by scaring your socks off with their 26th annual Haunted House! The Forest of Terror will be held at the Little Red Schoolhouse on Cottonwood Road, Friday and Saturday, October 25 and 26. The Anderson eighth grade class will transform the 96-year-old schoolhouse into a terrifying Forest of Terror for all who dare to enter.

The Little Red School House is located 5 miles South of Huffine Lane on Cottonwood Road, kitty corner from Anderson School. Plenty of parking is available, please carpool - the more the merrier/scarier.

While you wait for your turn to enter the Forest of Terror there will be plenty of food, treats and drinks available for purchase.
Tickets will be sold on site, October 25 and 26.
Follow the haunted house on Facebook for more information and updates at https://www.facebook.com/Anderson-School-Haunted-House.
 Anderson Haunted House: Forest of Terror

Friday and Saturday, October 25 & 26, 2019
The Little Red School House: 5 miles South of Huffine Lane on Cottonwood Road
Lights on from 5:30-6:30 p.m.: Admission $5 
Lights off from 7-10 p.m.: Admission $8
Fast Pass ticket: $20
Skip the Line ticket: $30
Visa and Mastercard accepted
All funds raised from the Haunted House will go toward the Anderson School eighth grade class trip to Washington D.C.

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Wednesday, Sep. 11th, 2019

MSU Library acquires collection of papers from noted conservationist Frank Craighead

Montana State University’s Library has acquired a collection of materials of the noted wildlife researcher and conservationist Frank Cooper Craighead Jr.

“We’re delighted to have the Craighead collection entrusted to the MSU Library,” said Kenning Arlitsch, MSU Library dean. “This important collection documents significant and pioneering research that informed federal and state environmental and wildlife policies and legislation.”

According to Craighead’s New York Times obituary, he and his twin brother, John, were both prolific wildlife researchers and conservationists who grew up near Washington, D.C. but later moved to Moose, Wyoming. In 1959, Yellowstone National Park officials asked the twins to study grizzly bears. They agreed, and, using collars and transmitters that they built themselves, the Craigheads were the first to use radio telemetry to track the movements and behavior of grizzly bears and elk in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

They joined the Navy in World War II and were assigned to design and implement a survival training program. They also conducted research on birds of prey and broader ecosystems and helped write the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, which was created by Congress in 1968 to preserve certain rivers with outstanding natural, cultural and recreational values in a free-flowing condition.

After an attempt at a career in federal agencies, in 1965 Craighead founded the Craighead Institute, an applied science and research organization that designs and manages research projects in support of conservation in the Northern Rockies and around the world. The institute is now located in Bozeman and is run by Craighead’s son, Frank “Lance” Craighead and Lance’s wife, April Craighead. More information about the Craighead Institute is available at craigheadresearch.org/.

The collection, which will be available for the public to view in MSU Library’s Special Collection and Archives, includes original research notes, field data, manuscripts, published reports and books. In all, it contains approximately 40 boxes of materials.

The materials should be noteworthy to individuals for a range of reasons, according to Arlitsch.

“The Craighead brothers were hugely influential scientists,” he said. “It is a valuable collection for researchers but also for anyone interested in the amazingly adventurous lives that Frank and John led.”

The MSU Library acquired the collection after Lance Craighead attended a Friends of the MSU Library event in 2018, Arlitsch said. A few days later, Lance Craighead approached Arlitsch to see if the library would be interested in his father’s papers.

“We’re very pleased that Dad’s archives are now safely housed at the MSU Library where this material will be available to everyone,” said Lance Craighead. “My brother, Charles, and sister, Jana, and I considered several other options for donating this legacy of research and conservation and decided on Montana State University partly because of the archive’s focus on the Greater Yellowstone, which has always been central to our family’s world, and partly because I studied here and obtained my Ph.D. and know it for the wonderful institution it is. My Dad and his brother John (and not least their sister Jean) led extraordinary lives immersed in nature, and it is our hope that some of the insights and knowledge that Dad recorded will be helpful to future generations as they plot a course through a rapidly changing world.”

Charlie Craighead said he appreciates the MSU Library’s efforts to preserve his father’s observations.

“Dad was the kind of scientist that made a note of everything that interested him or caught his attention. He made handwritten notes in pocket-sized spiral bound pads, on correspondence, on maps, on legal pads. Over the years, he filled notebook after notebook with his observations — some of these turned into scientific papers, others into books. And some notations were obviously meant only for himself, reminders of the world he saw and hoped to understand. Maybe some future scholar can figure those out.

“After Dad's home burned to the ground in 1978 we watched him slowly rebuild his library of books and publications. Fortunately, he disliked paperwork enough that he kept most of it out of the house in a separate building he used as an office, so it survived the fire. We all lamented the loss of his photographs and films, but none of us really cared about the papers and documents he lost. It turns out there are people who do care about paper. Luckily for us, Kenning Arlitsch is one of those and saw the historical value of Dad’s basement full of letters and notes. We made him take it all. Spread among those 40 boxes is the story of Frank Craighead, and it will be safely waiting in Bozeman for discovery.”

Arlitsch noted that the Craighead collection joins a number of other collections at the MSU Library that focus on the Yellowstone region.

“We have approximately 80 archival collections related to the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, and collecting in that area is one of our stated emphases,” Arlitsch said. “The Frank Craighead collection is a major advancement in the growth of our Special Collections, and it adds to recent acquisitions from Mike Clark, Rick Reese, Paul Schullery and Marsha Karle.”

The MSU Library’s Special Collections and Archives has more than 800 active collections. It specializes in collections related to Montana agriculture and ranching, Montana engineering and architecture, Montana history, MSU history, Native Americans in Montana, prominent Montanans, trout and salmonids, U.S. Sen. Burton K. Wheeler, and Yellowstone National Park and the Yellowstone ecosystem. More information is available online at https://www.lib.montana.edu/archives/.

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Tuesday, Sep. 10th, 2019

SNOW ALERT: First snow of the season at Big Sky, MT

The rumors are true: Big Sky Resort saw its first snowfall of the season today. As clouds cleared this morning, 11,166 foot Lone Peak revealed a dusting of snow. For the record – there are just 80 more days until ski season begins. Winter is just around the corner. Keep up the snow dances!

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Monday, Sep. 9th, 2019

Montana High School Students Invited to Shop for Colleges and Win Scholarship Money

18 College Fairs throughout the state will feature anywhere from 60-80 higher education institutions and $1,000’s of scholarship money given away.

The Montana Post Secondary Educational Opportunities Council (MPSEOC) will host three weeks of college fairs throughout Montana beginning September 9th (schedule attached).  MPSEOC has conducted statewide college fairs since 1987.  As many as 11,000 high school seniors and/or juniors will attend the fairs with their classmates, families, and guidance counselors.

The college fairs give students an opportunity to contemplate their options after high school.  Students can visit with representatives from in-state and out-of-state colleges and universities, technical and trade schools, and military branches.


“The best tip I can give a high school student with regard to their post-secondary plans is to check out all of their options.  College fairs allow students to see exactly what is out there and fuels excitement about finding the best fit for them,” said Amy Leary, MPSEOC Executive Director. “These statewide fairs also help emphasize the quality and variety of colleges and universities available in Montana.  With 25 accredited higher education institutions in our state, students are bound to find something that works for them."

Although the fairs are geared to high school students, they are open to the general public and parents are encouraged to attend as well!  Anyone who is interested in pursuing post-secondary education is welcome to attend.

Another highlight of the college fairs is the College Ca$h Scholarship Program.  The College Ca$h Program gives away 1000’s of scholarship dollars to students across the state.  The scholarships are awarded by a random drawing from the names of students who attend the college fairs.  Both high school juniors and seniors are eligible to sign up. The scholarships are made possible by the donations from sponsors.  These sponsors and partners are:  Montana University System – Student Financial Services, GEAR UP, the Office of Public Instruction, Reach Higher Montana, and the Montana Post Secondary Educational Opportunities council (MPSEOC).

   |  Eastern Region College Fairs:  September 9  12, 2019
   |  Central Region College Fairs:  September 16 
 19, 2019
   |  Western Region College Fairs:  September 23 
 26, 2019

       *See the detailed schedule of events attached.

Each September, we ask everyone to join in the annual celebration by showing their support for our Montana students.  Therefore, we have extended an invitation to all Montana communities to join in this three week College Fair Tour by joining in the “Support Students Month” to show their support of Montana students.  On behalf of all Montana colleges and universities, we invite you, your employees, your school faculty and staff, and communities across Montana to participate in this Montana celebration to support Montana’s students together.  What an incredible opportunity to encourage higher education by promoting education through those most visible to our Montana students, the faculty, staff and administrations in our schools.  We hope you will participate and encourage others in your area to do the same.  The goal of this statewide celebration is to encourage staff, faculty, administration, parents, and community members to wear a shirt or clothing representing the college they attended (preferred).  They could also choose to represent an institution nearest their community or simply choose a college or higher education program they are a fan of or support.  Our hope is to have a tremendous cross-section of higher education from all Montana institutions represented as well as many out-of-state colleges, private universities, ivy-league institutions, training programs, etc. represented also.  Help us show students all of their options after high school!  Help us support Montana students together!  To show your support of Montana students by spreading the word, wearing your college gear, and/or donating a $1.00, visit:  www.SupportMontanaStudents.org .   Together we can help Montana students reach their dreams!

We hope you will join in this Montana celebration, and we hope to see you at this year’s Montana College Fairs!

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Thursday, Sep. 5th, 2019

Keeping It Local: Why Your Small Business Needs Neighborhood Marketing

Being that you’re a small business owner, your biggest competition (aside from the other small businesses in your vicinity) is the big-name companies with big budgets, right? Yes. Well, do you know the most effective way to knock them out of your competition? Believe it or not, your secret weapon is right in your backyard… No, it’s not a real weapon in the shed in your backyard… your secret weapon to beating out those big name companies lies within your very own neighborhood. In fact, it’s called Neighborhood Marketing, and it is vital to the success of your small business.

What is Neighborhood Marketing?
So what exactly is neighborhood marketing, you ask? Well, neighborhood marketing is a process of marketing your business from the inside out, meaning, you’re bringing awareness about your business in your local communities first and then branching out to the larger communities… that’s why it can be looked out as starting out “in your backyard” as a figure of speech.

Typically, with neighborhood marketing, the system never takes place further than a five to ten minute drive away from your business but the focus of this type of marketing is to take all aspects of the great customer experience people find in your store and serve it up (promote it) in high doses to people in your community who can receive the greatest impact and benefit from your business.

So why would you put your focus on a smaller number of people first than reaching out to the larger communities? Well, you want to start in your local communities first because that’s where your best customers will come from. Not only that, but that’s where almost all of your customers will come from. Anyone living outside of that five to ten-minute drive might not be as willing to make that drive for a new business they know nothing about.

Where Most Go Wrong...
That’s where lots of small business owners go wrong. When you decide to start your own business, there are things you need to know upfront but marketing in your own neighborhood is something that small business owners seem to forget about; they always want to start out with big marketing efforts for the larger communities and end up running out of money within the first two years, according to the Small Business Administration.

So instead of following in the footsteps of failed small business owners, why not take the road that they didn’t travel? Why not start small, in your own community first, then branch out? If you’re a small business owner, take a look at how neighborhood marketing is vital to your small business.

Neighborhood Marketing Enhances Your Business’ Prestige
As a small business owner, do you know what one of the biggest things going for you is, especially when you’re first starting out? It’s your reputation. If you indeed do want to eventually branch out to the larger communities, you need your local community to deem you as a reputable and prestigious company first.

If your local community member shop at your store and have wonderful customer experiences, the word will spread like wildfire, and guess where it will spread to… the larger communities… in due time. You may have bigger dreams for the larger communities but it’s also important that you realize your local neighborhood is where your neighborhood marketing efforts will have the biggest impact and bring you the most sales.

Neighborhood Marketing Allows Your Business to Be Active at Community Events
Community events are the best ways to not only get to know other local businesses but to also get to know the locals that live in the community. Whether it’s a fundraiser you have a tent set up at or an event your business is helping sponsor, it’s the perfect time to hand out “swag” to the locals in attendance. What is “swag,” you ask? Swag is merchandise that represents your business… you give those items away to people who visit your booth or tent.

You might want to purchase notepads with your custom logo and company name on them, that way when people need to jot things down, they’ll always see your business and be subconsciously reminded that if they ever need your services to contact you.

Neighborhood Marketing Allows You to Network With Other Local Businesses
You want to team up and network with other local businesses to increase your exposure and attract new customers. This is especially important and beneficial to your business if there’s no other business in the local area with products or services your business provides. You can ask a business to post a flier in their high traffic areas or on their door or window. As thanks to them, you can offer to do the same for them.

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Friday, Aug. 30th, 2019

Gone Fishing: The Best Fishing Spots Across the Mountain States

The Mountain States are eight separate states spread across the western part of the United States. In no particular order, they include:

New Mexico

Even though they are all grouped together under the moniker of “mountain state”, all of these states are vastly different. Even though they are all different, each state boasts some great fishing.

So whether you are heading out of state for vacation or staying local, be sure to channel your inner angler and head to one (or more!) or these fishing spots.

Missouri River, Montana
Let’s start as local as we can here! The Missouri River is regularly ranked as not only the top fly fishing location in Montana, but one of the best in the entire country. No matter what time of year you go, you’ll be found to catch something but the recommended time is between April and November.

Start your first fishing stories here with some of the biggest trout in the state.

Henry’s Lake State Park, Idaho
Although Idaho is mostly known for its potatoes, it doesn’t come up short on fantastic fishing spots. The state park is home to plenty of fish in a beautiful, picturesque lake.

The only downside is that the park is open for fishing from May to October. It is also neighbors with Yellowstone National Park, meaning you can catch all the fish you can before heading over to one of the country’s most famous natural areas.

Corn Lake, Colorado
Choosing a top fishing spot in Colorado is like choosing what to munch on first at an all-you-can-eat buffet. Corn Lake is located just outside of Grand Junction and shares proximity with other fishing spots, including the Colorado River.

If you’re traveling with children, Corn Lake is often rated as one of the top spots for beginning fishermen. Just remember to grab all your gear before you bounce from spot to spot.

Logan River, Utah
Logan River is a fantastic spot for beginners and veteran alike, as the river running through the northeast corner of Utah draws people in from all backgrounds. Here, you’re likely to find trout and till.

There are more than 30 miles to choose from along the river, meaning you’ll be able to find that perfect secluded spot and enjoy some relaxing fishing.

Boysen Reservoir, Wyoming
Even though Wyoming may be famous for having the smallest population in Wyoming, it is home to over 4,200 lakes. One of the best locations in Boysen Reservoir and is regularly known as one of the best walleye and trout fishing spots.

With over 76 miles of shoreline and a plethora of other activities, you may find yourself contributing to Wyoming’s small population when it’s all said and done!

Bluewater Lake State Park, New Mexico
If you’re looking for a rare catch, head to Bluewater Lake State Park. Here, you may be able to catch the tiger muskie. Originally introduced to control invasive species, the tiger muskie remains a tough catch.

The park is also a hotspot for ice fishing in the winter and an easily accessible park by car throughout the summer. So just in case you miss the summer months, don’t worry and bring a thick coat.

Lees Ferry, Arizona
Situated along the Colorado River, Lees Ferry is an ideal place for fly fishers looking to snare the big catch. Lees Ferry is also an ideal fishing location year round thanks to the Arizona climate.

The spot offers boat rentals if you want to get out further into the water or you can simply stay along the 13 miles of shoreline.

Sheep Creek Reservoir, Nevada
Escape the casinos and nightlife and head north to Sheep Creek Reservoir. Located on the border with Idaho, Sheep Creek is fairly isolated and is a hot spot for trout and other fish.

Ideal for fly fishers and dry-baiters, the reservoir is known as the best spot in the area to catch smallmouth bass. There are also plenty of camping areas and docks, meaning you could be spending a few days here, trying to break the record for smallmouth bass set in 2010. An angler pulled one out that weighed nearly nine pounds!

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Reinforce Your IT Security Career with CompTIA Security+ SY0-501 Exam

There’s so much going on with the IT industry―updates here and advancements everywhere! Staying relevant, however, is no longer a matter of how well you did at school but rather how well you keep up with the trend. And you can do so by adding certifications into your profile.

But the main question is―what is the best certification at present if you’re a professional eyeing to strengthen a career in IT security? For most security experts, they would suggest to get CompTIA Security+ certified first before jumping into other security certifications.

If you want to know why CompTIA Security+, together with its corresponding SY0-501 exam, is a great way to reinforce your security career, here’s everything you need to know.  

Offered by a world-renowned IT company
Did you know that this global certification is offered by Prepaway CompTIA, a world-renowned IT association with an extensive number of IT certifications? That means passing SY0-501 exam shows your strength as a professional. CompTIA’s amazing reputation in the IT field has been going on for many years. They have been tagged as a reliable IT company with over 10 top-rated certifications for different professionals. And one of its most popular certifications is no other than CompTIA Security+.

Tagged as core security certification among many
The recognition of CompTIA Security+ isn’t something to question. Thousands of professionals can attest to its importance in the real-world setting. As a result, it has been considered as a notable security certification among those with working in IT administration, particularly in the security aspect. The reason for such distinction is that this foundational certification establishes a core understanding of different cybersecurity roles.

So, whether you are a system administrator, a security engineer, or a penetration tester, you will appreciate this credential because it features all the important security topics as well as cover top security practices.

Labeled as a badge of proficiency by most recruiters
One of the reasons why many professionals want to pass SY0-501 is that it gives them great leverage during job hunting. When applying for a job, you always want to stand out from the hundreds of applicants for just one position. And you can do so by having that icing on your cake―which is your certification. Once you successfully pass the certification exam, you won’t just be awarded with global validation but also recruitment recognition. Employers would always prioritize those who have showcased resiliency and proficiency through the completion of certification exams. Well, passing an exam isn’t as easy as you think. Hence, employers give what is due to this certification holders―and that is highlighting their application.

Now that you know the main reasons why CompTIA Security+ is a praise-worthy credential, it’s time to organize your plans for SY0-501 exam. Don’t worry―we’ll help you get through it with these amazing tips!

SY0-501 exam and everything in between
The first thing that you should know is that SY0-501 exam is a combination of multiple-choice and performance-based questions. A total number of 90 questions must be completed within a span of 90 minutes or 1 hour and 30 minutes. That means you need to spend your time answering the question wisely because of the limited time frame. Plus, the performance-based questions are quite challenging as it assesses your skill in answering problems in a virtual environment―but not a live lab.

For you to pass the exam, you need to score at least 750 out of 100 to 900 scale. It might seem difficult to successfully ace the test, but of course, you can! There are many efficient tips and tricks to help you become more than 100% ready before the scheduled exam day. Here’s how.

Don’t underestimate even if this is just an entry-level certification
Some people would think that SY0-501 exam is just an easy test because it’s a foundational exam. But don’t take it too lightly because this exam is very important to give you core security understanding. So, make sure to focus on the exam topics, which include fundamental cybersecurity skills, penetration testing, network architecture concepts, vulnerability scanning topics, public key infrastructure, management controls, wireless security settings, identity services, and related topics. But there’s no need to worry because there’s a specific study guide provided by CompTIA for the exam, which is available in eBook or printed format. Plus, this study guide covers all exam objectives.

Avail of different learning resources
While books are still essential references when preparing for an exam, online training courses have been more advantageous to most professionals. It’s because these are very convenient, allowing you to train anywhere and anytime. Not only that, CompTIA has a designated E-learning content for Security+, which is loaded with training videos, flashcards, and practical practice tests. In addition to physical and online resources, enrolling in an interactive lab is highly recommended so that you will be showered with realistic training and substantial practical skills. This hands-on lab environment is offered by CompTIA CertMaster Labs.

Practice makes perfect!
Before you get to the real battle, answer as many practice tests as possible. This will surely help you enhance your skills, not just for Security+ exam but also in most cybersecurity jobs. One of the most reliable exam prep websites at present is PrepAway, which is a notable source of practice tests, training courses,audio guides, and more! Their collection of questions and answers are valid and always updated.

Be one of the few, highly regarded security professionals in the cybersecurity field with the help of CompTIA Security+. But of course, you should first pass its core test - SY0-501 exam. So, bring into reality your professional goals and start planning for the exam!

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Thursday, Aug. 29th, 2019

Competition-winning art installations debut Aug. 29 in Asbjornson Hall

A recent Montana State University graduate who won a student competition to install art in the new Norm Asbjornson Hall will debut his work at a public reception set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 29, on the first floor of the building.
Holden Roberts’ “The Human Collective,” a multimedia installation of painting, video and sculpture, will be displayed for three years on all three floors of Asbjornson Hall. Roberts, who graduated in May from the School of Art in the College of Arts and Architecture, was the winner of the MSU Norm Asbjornson College of Engineering’s Asbjornson Hall Student Art Contest. The engineering college and MSU Honors College are both housed in the building, which opened in December.

“It has been a wonderful journey to see Holden Roberts’ original proposal come to life in the building,” said Rob Maher, the MSU engineering professor who coordinated the eight-member selection committee composed of representatives from both the engineering college and the College of Arts and Architecture. “I really admire his ability to craft each and every element of the artwork, tying together the three panels in the heart of the building.”

As the winner of the competition Roberts won $30,000 to cover costs of the three 10-by-20-foot installations and an additional honorarium of $7,000.
Roberts has been working on the installation since he learned he won the competition in March. Maher said 16 contest submissions were narrowed down to four finalists. The committee sought work that was “innovative and captivating, utilizing the three separate spaces in an effective, coherent and compelling manner.” Roberts was “the unanimous choice,” Maher said.

Roberts’ core idea for the piece, which was his senior thesis, was installed in March on the third floor of the hall. It is composed of 120 small color block acrylic paintings – six rows of 20 paintings -- inspired by pedestrians on MSU’s Centennial Mall. Each pedestrian is represented in a painting by the colors of their clothing.

The idea is amplified by more recently completed installations on the lower floors. The second-floor piece includes a short, motion-activated video loop, which Roberts also shot, of four students standing on MSU’s Centennial Mall. Students randomly walk through the four posed students in the video. The colors worn by the students in the video are represented by color block paintings. Also, a pair of portraits attached to wooden chains mounted to the right of the video alternate as the chains rotate. Roberts said the installation, was inspired by the paintings of abstract expressionist Mark Rothko and the films of Wes Anderson.

The first-floor installation is like the second except the video shows students maneuvering through a large rock field in Hyalite Canyon. Roberts hand-cut the pieces of the wooden chain on the first floor, which is also slightly larger than the similar operation on the second floor.
Roberts said that the works are inspired by the relationship between two- and three-dimensional space as well as the connection between people and space.
“They are a snapshot of time and space, as represented through color,” he said.
Roberts said that when he was growing up in Whitefish, he thought he would study architecture at MSU. But he changed his mind when he enrolled in an Honors seminar called “Radical Creativity” that was collaboratively taught by art professor Sara Mast, former MSU physics professor Nico Yunes and Jessica Jellison, a Bozeman architect and instructor in the School of Architecture. The class, a mix of art and science, was “a huge step forward in deciding where I wanted to go” with a career, he said.

Maher said Roberts’ work is an excellent example of the student art wall concept he proposed to Brett Gunnink, dean of the engineering college, in 2018.
“The idea was to have some aesthetic aspects of Asbjornson Hall be permanent, such as the artwork in the Montana Room and elsewhere in the building, while other aspects would change over time, just like the progression of students, faculty, and staff,” Maher said. He said there will be another call for proposals in about two years for a project to replace Roberts’ work in 2022.

In addition to Roberts' installations, several other pieces of art have been permanently installed in Asbjornson Hall, and additional artistic works are under consideration, Maher said. Hanging in the Montana Room, a large meeting room on the third floor next to the Honors College, is a 5-by-8-foot oil painting by artist Paul Waldum, “Spring Along Knox Ridge Road - Missouri River,” which depicts the stretch of river near Asbjornson’s hometown of Winifred.

“Unbeknownst to Mr. Waldum, Norm Asbjornson surveyed the landscape as a teenager and immediately recognized the landscape with great fondness,” said Ilse-Mari Lee, dean of the Honors College.
Waldum is an MSU graduate and Honors College instructor whose work has appeared in galleries and shows throughout the country. Lee said Waldum gifted the painting to MSU. His two children are both currently MSU undergraduate students.
Also installed in the Montana Room is a large, illuminated bronze relief Montana map by Bozeman sculptor Mitch Billis. Billis’ work has been displayed in galleries throughout the world, and his father, Mitch Sr., was a math professor at MSU. The hand-crafted conference table in the Montana Room was donated by Martel Construction, contractors for Asbjornson Hall. And, a bronze bobcat, a smaller version of bobcat statue on Alumni Plaza, north of Montana Hall, also is installed in the Montana Room.  The sculpture was created by artist and storyteller Bob Stayton, a 1951 graduate of Montana State, with the casting provided by Jack Muir, a 1970 graduate.

After Thursday’s reception, which is free and open to the public, Roberts said he and his girlfriend plan to travel the country before they enroll in graduate school. He hopes similar installations will be in his future.
“This is my dream of what I want to do,” Roberts said.

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