From a press release issued today by the University of North Dakota Student Government:
A survey of UND students regarding the potential addition of North Dakota as an option for the eventual public nickname vote drew 3262 responses over two days. Unique links were sent to each student to prevent respondents from voting multiple times and to prevent non-students from being able to access the link. After the results were finalized, UND Student Body President Matt Kopp contacted university administrators to inform them of the results.
The one-question survey asked, “Should North Dakota be included as an option for the public nickname vote?” Of the 3,262 respondents, 2,227 students voted yes (68.27%), 796 voted no (24.4%), and 239 voted not sure (7.33%). “Even with the vast majority of students still away from campus for the summer, the fact that thousands responded to this survey demonstrates just how much this issue matters to our students,” Kopp said. “I believe the results reflect the sentiment expressed by many in the UND community. The students have spoken loudly on this issue, and it is now my duty to advocate on their behalf. I urge President Kelley to respond to students by reinstating North Dakota as an option for the public nickname vote.”
We urge the same.
This survey confirms the beliefs of many on eventual public input voting later in the year on the nickname issue. What is especially telling is how many students actually cared enough to ring in on the question posed in the waning days of their summer break, and how clear the answer was (see below) — North Dakota should be an option.
[mks_pullquote align=”right” width=”300″ size=”24″ bg_color=”#000000″ txt_color=”#ffffff”]He can be remembered as a spiteful man sticking it back to the many who have reacted negatively to his bungling of the nickname issue, and his overall mismanagement of UND. Or, he can be remembered as a man willing to make amends on his way out the door to what we all hope is a happy retirement.[/mks_pullquote]President Kelley, who is retiring under a cloud of controversy early next year after poor reviews from UND faculty and dodging the bullet of a no confidence vote from Student Government last spring, has a choice in how he and his tenure at UND will be remembered. He can be remembered as a spiteful man sticking it back to the many who have reacted negatively to his bungling of the nickname issue, and his overall mismanagement of UND. Or, he can be remembered as a man willing to make amends on his way out the door to what we all hope is a happy retirement.
That choice hinges on putting “North Dakota” back in play as a choice for the new nickname, and the right choice is clear. We encourage him to formally announce “North Dakota” will be an option to vote on, not just considered. It is the right thing for him, UND, and the state.