Admissions Staff

Hannah Amundson

  • Assistant Director of Admissions - Enrollment Marketing
  • Transfer Coordinator
  • B.A., Concordia College Moorhead MN

Hannah Amundson

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Fargo, ND
  • Oak Grove High School

Education/Interests

I graduated in 2015 with a degree in English Education and a minor in Theatre Art. I have always loved education and talking to students about their ambitions. I try to make sure I keep theatre in my life by directing shows when I can.  In my free time, I like to read, travel, snuggle my cats, go to the lakes, and ride bike around the Pomme de Terre.

Why Morris?

My first interaction with the University is when I guest directed their production of Dead Man's Cellphone. During this experience, I got to work with amazing faculty and incredible students. This taste of the university experience left me wanting to work in this community. The University of Minnesota Morris continues to impress me with its commitment to students. Having been a teacher, I understand how important passion is at an educational institute. The professors and staff I meet care deeply about their students and creating meaningful experiences. Because we all have this shared sense of purpose, it makes the university a great place to learn, grow, and work.


Abby Bangasser

  • Assistant Director of Admissions - CRM
  • B.A., University of Minnesota, Morris

Abby Bangasser

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Hometown/HighSchool

  • Slayton, MN
  • Murray County Central

Education/Interests

I graduated from Morris in 2017 with B.A. degrees in Psychology and Liberal Arts for the Human Services and a minor in Biology. As a student I really enjoyed being involved on campus in various clubs (Dance Ensemble was my favorite) and working as a telecounselor in the Admissions Office. I was also involved in the community working various jobs and volunteering at the Steven's Community Humane Society. My passions include travel, animals, science, human rights, and helping people. I fill my free time hanging out with my friends, cuddling with my cat, going to the lake, baking, or the occasional netflix binge.

Why Morris?

I figured out in high school that if I was going to succeed in college I was going to need a place that offered personal attention and professors that cared about their students. Morris offered the perfect combination of small school feel with big school perks. Those aspects combined with the kindness of everyone I met made UMM a perfect fit. To this day, it is a place that fosters a sense of community for everyone and that's what I love about being here and why I've stuck around.


Harry Ballantyne

  • Admissions Counselor
  • M.S.A., Upper Iowa University
  • B.S., Crown College, St. Bonifacius, MN

Harrison Ballantyne

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Lakeville, MN
  • Lakeville South High School

Education/Interests

A native of Lakeville, Minnesota, Ballantyne attended Lakeville South High School before graduating from Crown in 2017 with degrees in Sports Management and theology. Following his time at Crown, he served as a graduate assistant baseball coach at Iowa Lakes Community College, while he obtained a master's degree in sports administration with an emphasis in coach and leadership education from Upper Iowa University.

Some of my interests include being an avid Minnesota sports fan, fitness, and coaching. I also enjoy watching movies and going out to different places to eat.

Why Morris?

During my college search throughout my senior year of high school, I ended up visiting the University of Minnesota Morris and considered it as being a potential spot for time in college. Although I did not ultimately choose the University of Minnesota Morris, I had the opportunity later on in my life to accept a position as the assistant baseball coach in January of 2020. As I have spent time here and gotten to know the area on a more personal level, what's not to like about it. Community is inviting, the people that are involved and work at the University of Minnesota Morris is what makes this place special!


Katie Jabri

  • Associate Director, Multicultural & International Recruitment
  • M.A., University of St. Thomas
  • B.A., University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Katie Jabri

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Hometown/HighSchool

  • Park Rapids, MN
  • Park Rapids Area High School

Education/Interests

While completing my undergraduate degree in Psychology, I studied abroad and volunteered with an international student organization. That allowed me to find my passion in the international education field and was my focus throughout my graduate studies. Since then, I have worked in international recruitment, admissions and advising for 10+ years. I love to travel, cook, play tennis and fish.

Why Morris?

I am a big fan of small town Minnesota, as well as liberal arts education. I think Morris provides the perfect environment for students to learn and thrive, while discovering their passions.


Brandon King

  • Admissions Counselor
  • B.A., University of Minnesota Morris

Brandon King

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Albuquerque, NM
  • John F. Kennedy High School

Education/Interests

I graduated with my B.A. degree in Psychology in 2022. Throughout my college career I worked with students as a mentor to help them figure out their goals and what they had to do to reach those goals. I am happy I have this opportunity to be able to do the same with incoming students.
In my free time, I like to go on hikes with my dog Shadow, play board games and video games, and lastly I like to travel to different places to explore and learn new things.

Why Morris?

As a first generation college student, I had no clue what to look for in college and I had no one to help me. When I came for my campus visit before applying to Morris, I already felt like I was not just another number but someone the community cared about. I am excited to be able to help incoming students the same way.


Brendan Goler

  • Admissions Counselor
  • M.Ed., University of Minnesota Duluth
  • B.A., Benedictine University, Lisle

Contact


Education/Interests

I graduated from Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois in 2014 with a B.A. in Bilingual Journalism as well as minors in Spanish and Communications. I was a member of the men’s soccer team while at Benedictine as well as the football team as a kicker. I was an active member of the Student Athlete Advisory Committee(SAAC) as well. I am an avid Chicago sports fan and I also love traveling with my wife, Allison and the opportunity to use my foreign language skills in different countries. Some of my other hobbies and interests include coaching, skiing, golfing and reading.

Why Morris?

Growing up in the Chicagoland area, I really enjoyed the different culture that comes with the smaller, rural towns. I also was impressed by the diversity and inclusivity of the campus. I also serve as the Associate Head Softball Coach so I am very fortunate to be able to work with our high achieving student-athletes as well. The faculty and staff, students and community members were instantly so welcoming and helpful which is one of the main reasons that I have so thoroughly enjoyed my time in Morris!


Addy Lutchen

  • Regional Recruiter
  • M.A., University of Nebraska at Kearney
  • B.A., University of Minnesota Morris

Addison Lutchen

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Monticello, MN
  • Monticello High School

Education/Interests

I graduated from Morris in 2017 with degrees in Spanish and Secondary Education as well as a minor in Communications, Media, and Rhetoric. In my final year at Morris, I was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to teach English in Spain immediately after graduation. I love giving back to my community, and as a student, Morris allowed me to do just that. I taught ESL classes through the Office of Community Engagement, I worked as a peer tutor with the Office of Academic Success, I volunteered for the movie theater in town, and I even spent my spring breaks volunteering all across the country with fellow cougars through one of our many student orgs.

In my free time, I love to cook and try new foods, hike, play board games, spend time with friends, and speak Spanish whenever I can.

Why Morris?

I love the support Morris offers its students, be it academically, professionally, or personally. Morris's small size is its strength, and allowed me to have strong relationships with professors, deep ties to the community, and find my own lifelong circle of friends. I even found my husband here!

If students are looking for a place that will allow them to be themselves, or just support them as they figure out who they want to be, Morris is the place!


Nadeesha Madubasani

  • Data and Operations Coordinator
  • M.Sc., Southeast Missouri State University
  • B.Sc., Southeast Missouri State University

Nadeesha Madubasani

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Colombo, Sri Lanka

Education/Interests

I graduated from Southeast Missouri State University - Cape Girardeau, Missouri with a BSc in Telecommunication and Computer Networking and MSc in Technology Management. I am an international student and after getting my BSc I had the opportunity to join Saint Francis medical center in Cape Girardeau and Maryville University in Saint Louis. I also worked as a Graduate Assistant for Office of Residence Life in Southeast Missouri State University for 2 years, after getting my MSc I worked as a Business System Analyst in CSX Transportation in Jacksonville FL. I always wanted to start my long term career in Higher Education and I enjoy working with students. In my spare time I enjoy playing badminton, traveling, and going for Camping with my husband and friends.

Why Morris?

The first time I came to Morris I felt the friendliness of people and how much they cared. I always wanted to be a part of a small town filled with an awesome community. I am glad that I got an opportunity to work at the University of Minnesota Morris.


Wendy Melberg

  • Office Support Assistant
  • Pine Technical College

Wendy Melberg

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Chokio, MN
  • Chokio-Alberta High School

Education/Interests

I attended Chokio-Alberta High School and Pine Technical College and I most enjoyed the foods and computer classes. In addition to being a bit of a computer nerd, I am also a sports fan!

Why Morris?

UMM is full of loving and friendly people that care.


Jordyn Meyer

  • Admissions Counselor
  • B.A., University of Minnesota Morris

Jordyn Meyer

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Osakis, MN
  • Osakis High School

Education/Interests

I graduated from Morris in 2022 with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Human Services with a subplan in Human development. Along with my two majors, I graduated with honors and am now a part of the McNair scholars family, with hopes to one day return to graduate school and obtain a PhD. As a student, I was active in campus life and followed my passion in music by playing flute in Morris’s large wind ensemble Symphonic Winds, helped plan the annual Yule Ball, a Harry Potter themed winter formal, and cheered my fellow peers in athletics and other activities such as Dance Ensemble.

During my time in Morris, I was able to find my passion for learning and research with the help of amazing faculty and mentors (thank you McNair!). I have now studied abroad twice in both Italy and Cuba and presented my research on aspects of America’s Foster Care system at two academic conferences. My time at Morris allowed me to build my previous life experiences and knowledge as well help me grow into a person who continues to strive to create a more equitable and sustainable world.

Why Morris?

From my first visit, I knew I found a place I could call home. Before moving to Minnesota in 2017 and graduating from Osakis in 2018, I moved multiple times across the Midwest and parts of the South. I hadn’t had the chance to stay in one place for very long, and I knew college would be a wonderful opportunity to continue to make Minnesota my new home. Morris only exceeded my expectations. The small campus allowed me to get to know both my peers and faculty on a personal level, and I have now met lifelong friends turned family as well as amazing faculty who have helped me reach personal, academic and professional goals. Morris has truly given me so many experiences to be grateful for (including my first time on an airplane and experience with ear infections and doctors in other countries!) and I am looking forward to continuing to grow and help others discover the “Morris Magic” as an admissions staff.


Connor Oldenburg

  • Admissions Counselor

Connor Oldenburg

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Maplewood, MN
  • Homeschool

Education/Interests

I graduated from UMN Morris with a degree with majors in Political Science, Communication, Media, and Rhetoric, and Social Science. In my time at the University as a student, I have participated in several campus activities such as being a captain for the football team or a member of the campus Activity Fee Review Committee. One of my favorite campus activities however, would be giving campus tours to prospective students, and getting to meet all sorts of people to share the wonderful campus we have here at UMN Morris.

Outside of my campus activities, I love being outdoors, whether that be fishing, hiking, camping, or just enjoying nature. I also love sports at all levels, and am an avid Minnesota sports fan. I also have worked in the past as a yo-yo and juggling performer, which is something I try to keep up in my free time.

Why Morris?

In my college search, I wanted a school which had the community and people I felt I could connect with the most. Morris has been the foundation for many of my most important relationships, as well as providing me with countless opportunities. After my graduation in Fall of 2021, an opportunity to work for the University arose, and was one I simply could not pass up. UMN Morris has provided me with so many positive experiences, and in working for UMN Morris I hope to be able to provide those same experiences to others.


Carolyn Peterson

  • Guest Relations Specialist

Carolyn Peterson

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Morris, MN
  • Morris Area High School

Education/Interests

I graduated from Alexandria Community College. After college, I returned back to the Morris Area to live and continue my career. In my spare time I enjoy spending time with my husband and three sons. We enjoy spending time at the lake and travelling.

Why Morris?

Having grown up in Morris, I am very proud of my community and to be able to work here and continue to enjoy and promote all that Morris and the University of Minnesota Morris has to offer is truly a wonderful opportunity.


Lu Starr Ringle

  • Program/Project Specialist
  • B.S., Bemidji State University

Lu Starr Ringle

Contact


Education/Interests

I received a BS in Business Administration from Bemidji State University in 2020. During college I studied film production, studio art, and marketing before I landed on business focusing on small business development. After college, I was fortunate to do freelance work for a handful of creative small businesses. Being from the Leech Lake area, I enjoy slalom water skiing, boating, and hiking. I began a jewelry line in 2017 and enjoy finding new ways to make interesting pieces. I am an interdisciplinary artist focused on sustainable creative processes and art accessibility.

Why Morris?

I first visited Morris in high school visiting my friends during homecoming week. My partner is a UMM alum and we road tripped to Morris in 2021 from the Twin Cities before making the move in August. Being from a small town myself, I enjoy the pace of life here and the community that brings. West Central Minnesota is a beautiful area as a whole and I'm grateful to live here.


Samantha Sommers

  • Application Processing Specialist
  • B.A., University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

Samantha Sommers

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • St. Cloud, MN
  • St. Cloud Apollo

Education/Interests

I graduated from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities with a BA in Family Social Science. I also had the experience of playing for the Gophers Women’s golf team while attending the Twin Cities. After graduating, I went to work in the K-12 setting and found an interest in working with students, mainly junior high. In my spare time I enjoy reading, playing golf with my husband and friends, walks with my dogs, spending time with family and I am always ready for a good laugh.

Why Morris?

The first time I came to the Morris, I felt like it was a great place to be. Small town feel with a big community vibe. It got me hooked from the start. The feeling on campus compared to others is that it is welcoming and there is always a friendly face to greet you wherever you may go. I am excited to continue my adventure as a staff member at Morris!


Brian Studebaker

  • Director of Admissions
  • M.S., Silver Lake College (WI)
  • B.B.A., Saint Joseph College (IN)

Brian Studebaker

Contact


Hometown/HighSchool

  • Gurnee, IL
  • Warren Township High School

Education/Interests

I was probably destined to work in admissions since my freshman year in college, working in the admissions office at my alma mater, giving campus tours and helping to recruit new students. Even though I was a Business Administration major in college, I actually enjoyed my Psychology minor the most. While most of my high school friends chose to attend the larger state schools, I found that getting involved at a smaller school was even easier and more enjoyable. Beyond being a student-worker in admissions, I was also on the college radio station, student government, and a few other groups. I also went on to get my Masters of Science in Management and Organizational Behavior while I was living in Wisconsin. Now, as a new resident of Morris, I'm enjoying getting to know the campus and town, as well as the staff and students. If I'm not here, I'm probably visiting my parents in Florida, or spoiling my awesome niece and nephew in North Carolina.

Why Morris?

As a product of a small, liberal arts college, I am well-aware of the opportunities that a school like Morris can provide. Plus, having the benefit of being part of the University of Minnesota system, we can offer a wide variety of programs and experiences at a very affordable price. I truly enjoy the environment that we have, where you are a name, not a number. It is very rare to find a place like Morris.