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VCSU Announces Mark Nelson as New Vice President for Student Affairs

Jun 25, 2024

Valley City, ND – Valley City State University (VCSU) has announced Mark Nelson will serve as the new Vice President for Student Affairs starting July 1. Mr. Nelson will be taking over for Dr. Erin Klingenberg, who is retiring this summer.A photo of Mark Nelson, the new Vice President for Student Affairs at VCSU

Nelson, originally from North Dakota, has more than 30 years of experience in higher education and an extensive background working at four-year residential universities, including Research I institutions. He comes to VCSU from Arapahoe Community College (ACC), part of the Colorado Community College System. Currently, he is the Executive Director of Advising & Retention. Nelson earned an Associate of Arts degree from Normandale Community College, a Bachelor of Science in Social Work, and a master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from Bowling Green State University.

“We are delighted to welcome Mark to the VCSU community. His vast experience in program development, campus collaboration, and dedication to student affairs will be invaluable as we continue to enhance the student experience at VCSU,” President Alan LaFave said. “I am grateful for Dr. Klingenberg and her leadership in Student Affairs, and I am confident Mark will bring the same dedicated leadership and principles to his work.”

Throughout his career, Nelson has demonstrated a strong ability to collaborate effectively with campus administration, faculty, admissions, financial aid, residence life, counseling, records and registration, and veteran’s affairs, among other departments. He currently serves on the College Care Team for behavioral intervention and threat assessment, focusing on the well-being of both students and staff.

“I am very excited to be joining Valley City State University as the Vice President for Student Affairs at a time when there have been record enrollment numbers and the university has launched a capital campaign for the improvement of classroom space and technology, the increase in scholarship opportunities for students, as well as improvements to the athletics facilities,” Nelson said. “I look forward to continuing to offer a friendly and welcoming campus in my role as the Vice President for Student Affairs and working with the campus community to provide students with an exceptional educational and co-curricular experience as they pursue their academic and career goals.”

Nelson said he is excited to welcome and meet new and continuing students this fall as they return to campus and is looking forward to relocating to Valley City and being a part of the local community. His appointment marks a new chapter for VCSU’s Student Affairs division, which includes eight departments focused on student life. This includes residence life, student health services, mental health counseling, financial aid, student activities, career services, and diversity and inclusion.

For more information about VCSU or to arrange for an interview, contact Tammy Jo A. Taft, Director of Marketing and Communication via email at or by calling 701-845-7227.