Meet the Committee

Mandy Parpart, Chair

Mandy Parpart I am currently the Director of Student Activities and New Student Orientation, as well as a Resident Director. I have been at DSU for six years. I received my undergraduate degree from St. Cloud State University with a major in Applied Psychology. I then attended Minnesota State University Moorhead as a graduate student in the Counseling and Student Affairs program.


Jenn Aranda

Jenn Aranda


Kelly Barnes

Kelly Barnes Greetings! My name is Kelly Barnes and I am the Career Advisor with the Career Services office here at Dakota State University. I am looking forward to working with your student in the future as they are searching for part-time or Federal Work Study employment.

I have been with the DSU family for 5 years and I look forward to many more to come! What I enjoy most about DSU is the small friendly atmosphere. Everyone knows you by your name and I think that is important as we work with students to shape them into young professionals as they get ready for the employment opportunities that face them ahead.

I look forward to working closely with you, the families, and welcome any questions you may have about our part-time, Federal Work-Study, internship and full-time employment, as well as resume and interview workshops.

Thank you for your interest in our family program!


Patti Beck

Patti BeckI'm Patti Beck, Student Success and Retention Coordinator ad DSU. I'm a proud alumnus of DSU, and graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education in 1984. After graduation, I taught music in area schools for 10 years before returning to DSU, this time as an employee! My husband Jay (also a 1984 DSU Grad) is a painting contractor, and we are the parents of two great kids, a daughter and a son, both in college.

I've worked in many roles at DSU, including Assistant Director of Financial Aid, Student Employment Coordinator, and Student Support Specialist. In my current position, part of my job is to help our students get connected with a variety of academic resources we have available to assist them. I work closely with DSU faculty and staff to develop programs designed to help promote success in our students.

I think one of the greatest things we have to offer at Dakota State University, is our small, caring atmosphere. Our faculty and staff are willing to take the time to really get to know you and your student, and truly care about the success of your student!


Erica Clements

Erica ClementsHey, my name is Erica Clements and I'm an Admission Specialist here at Dakota State University along with being a member of the Family Program committee. I have been at DSU for two years and have really enjoyed the university and Madison community!

I graduated in 2008 from Black Hills State University in Spearfish, SD with a degree in Mass Communication with an emphasis in Public Relations and additional degree in Speech Communication. Since then I have been working at Dakota State, helping students make important decisions about their future.

I'm excited to be involved in not only making the college experience meaningful and exciting for students, but also for the family members sending their children to college. The Family Program has allowed me to be involved in creating projects that help integrate families into the lives of their college student and also help make the transition of sending off that first (or last!) child to college a little easier! If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email me at and thank you for taking some time to read a little bit about me!


Mandie Craven

Mandie CravenHi! I'm Mandie Craven and I've been with Dakota State since February 2008 as the Assistant Director of Housing. The Family Program is a great opportunity to continue meeting students and parents, outside of the work I do in the Residence Life department. As the Assistant Director it's my job to pair each of the students up with their roommates when they are brand new students to DSU and then oversee the rest of the housing processes of the upperclassmen. I also work closely with the student and professional staff in each of our residence halls, including the programs that they sponsor to give our resident students various activities to participate in.

I graduated with my Bachelor of Arts degree in Organizational Communication and Sociology in 2007 from Doane College in Crete, NE. I instantly found a home at DSU and in Madison with the close-knit community, and the great people I've met in our students, faculty/staff and our alumni. I look forward to continue welcoming students and parents to DSU through this program and would be happy to answer any questions to make this experience a great one for your family!


Amy Crissinger

Amy CrissingerHi, I'm Amy, director of admission at DSU. My job is to recruit prospective students to Dakota State and help them through the whole enrollment process. My ultimate goal though is to help those students be as successful as possible once they get here which is why I am a member of this committee. As family, you are extremely important to your student's success, both in that initial transition from high school to college and then throughout their college career to graduation. Being a part of that process with you helps me to better understand the wants and needs of both the students and the families and that makes me a better recruiter as I help students determine if DSU is a good fit for them.

I am a proud alum of Dakota State University and have been working here for over sixteen years now. Please let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything I can do to make you and your student's experience at Dakota State a great one!


Kathy Engbrecht

Kathy Engbrecht


Donna Fawbush

Donna FawbushHi! My name is Donna Fawbush. I have worked at Dakota State University for 15 years as the Events Coordinator.  In that capacity, I am responsible for the day to day operations of Dakota Prairie Playhouse & Conference Center. I also serve as the Director of the University's Summer Conference program and assist faculty, staff, and student organizations with coordinating details of events, meetings, conventions, and workshops. In addition to those responsibilities, I am also a member of the Family Program Committee. The Family Program is a great opportunity for families to experience Dakota State through their student's eyes. It will give family members a better understanding of the whole student experience.


Kenny Hayes

Kenny Hayes


Wayne Pauli

Wayne PauliHello! I am Dr. Wayne Pauli and I am currently the Director of the DSU Center of Excellence in CIS and the Associate Professor and Associate Dean in the College of Business and Information Systems. My education background includes a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with a minor in Information Systems from Northern State University, a diploma from the Colorado Graduate School of Banking, a Master of Science degree in Information Systems from Dakota State University, and a Ph.D. in Organization and Management from Capella University.

Here at Dakota State University, I teach several courses from the 100 levels to the 700 levels and working in the classroom in something that I really enjoy. I am especially proud of the technology rich curriculum that Dakota State University has to offer.

As a parent of three college-educated children, I recognize the benefit of keeping all family members involved in the educational process of their respective relative at DSU. This is the goal of the Family Program: involvement for all who wish to be involved.


Nicole Rieckman

Nicole Rieckman My name is Nicole Rieckman and I am the DSU Alcohol and Other Drugs Counselor. In addition to that role, I do prevention programming, personal counseling, and academic probation counseling as well. I earned by Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of South Dakota in May 2005 and my Master of Science degree in Counseling and Student Affairs from South Dakota State University in December 2007. I began my duties at Dakota State University in May 2008 as the Retention Specialist before moving into my current position in September 2009.

In my two years on campus, I have really come to feel like part of the DSU Family. I am very excited to be here and very excited to be a member of the Family Program Committee so that I may be part of extending the same welcoming hand to students and their family members that has been extended to me by DSU.


Jesse Kane

Jesse Kane


Cecelia Wittmayer

Cecelia WittmayerHello! I'm Dr. Cecelia Wittmayer, the vice president of academic affairs at DSU. I'm also a full professor in the College of Business and Information Systems and teach BADM 476 Marketing Research, the capstone course for marketing majors. I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Science-Writing Journalism and a Master of Science degree in Mass Communications from South Dakota State University. I earned my Ph.D. in Business Administration/Marketing from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I've been at DSU since 1986, when I was hired as an assistant professor of marketing. I have served as the vice president for academic affairs at DSU since 1998.

Last Updated: 2/23/12