Andrew Haffner covers higher education and general assignment stories for the Grand Forks Herald. He attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison, where he studied journalism, political science and international studies. He previously worked at the Dickinson Press.
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FORT TOTTEN, N.D.—A 3D printer quietly churned in a lab at Cankdeska Cikana Community College, spinning a plastic model using instructions provided by pre-engineering student Dane Allapowa. Allapowa is one of about 220 total enrolled students at the tribal college in Fort Totten, on the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation near the town of Devils Lake. He's planning to transfer soon to North Dakota State University to pursue his degree in civil engineering, but, on a slow Friday in late spring, he found himself alone in the makers room.
GRAND FORKS—At about $110 million, the Ralph Engelstad Arena was the single-largest private contribution in UND's history. It stands to reason then that the infrastructure to keep the place open would be built on a similar scale. Tax filings and other documents obtained by Forum News Service outline some of the institutional organization that keeps the lights on and the ice cold in the monumental hockey stadium and athletics center, including the network of entities that work together to keep the project intact.
GRAND FORKS -- The two people involved in a fatal shooting Thursday , May 17, were mother and son, police say. Officers responded about 11:30 a.m. to a home on the 2500 block of Seventh Avenue South after a report of a gun discharge in an apartment. Once there, police found an injured woman and a deceased man, both whom appeared to have suffered gunshot wounds.
GRAND FORKS—Kris Engelstad McGarry, daughter of University of North Dakota alumnus and mega-donor Ralph Engelstad, caused a stir Wednesday, May 9, when she told Forum News Service that relations had become strained between her family's foundation and her father's alma mater.
GRAND FORKS—The Rev. John Golv, of Zion Lutheran Church in Thief River Falls, had a solemn task to carry out. Though funerals come with the job for a minister, Golv had arrived Thursday at Hope Church in Grand Forks to conduct a memorial ceremony for three children who died in unsettling circumstances.
GRAND FORKS—The daughter of Ralph Engelstad, a trustee of the Engelstad Family Foundation, said Wednesday, May 9, that her working relationship with UND President Mark Kennedy has deteriorated, possibly resulting in fewer Engelstad Foundation dollars donated to the university. Kris Engelstad McGarry said in the two years since she first met Kennedy their relations have been marked by the university's "veiled threats" of litigation over the Ralph Engelstad Arena contract. Communications have been "very passive aggressive."
GRAND FORKS—Authorities confirmed Monday, May 7, that three children found dead last week were killed by their mother, who then committed suicide. Astra Volk, 35, and her children Arianna Talmage, 6, Aidan Talmage, 10, and Tyler Talmage, 14, were found dead Thursday morning by a school resource officer dispatched on a welfare check when the children didn't arrive at school in the morning. Police said the family members appeared to have died from gunshot wounds.
GRAND FORKS — The deaths of four people in an apparent murder-suicide Thursday, May 3, has left a community wondering if more could have been done. Longtime social services and domestic violence experts Kate Kenna and Kristi Hall-Jiran weighed in this week on what individuals can do to spot potential crises early on. The insight comes after the bodies of Astra Volk, 35, and three of her children—Adrianna Talmage, 6, Aidan Talmage, 10, and Tyler Talmage, 14—were found dead in their home on the 1000 block of South 12th Street.
GRAND FORKS—A community is grappling with the specters of mental illness and self-harm in the wake of an apparent murder-suicide that left a Grand Forks mother and three children dead. Residents down the Red River Valley and beyond have taken to social media to discuss the context of the events leading to the Thursday morning, May 3, discovery of Astra Volk and her children, Arianna Talmage, 6; Aidan Talmage, 10; and Tyler Talmage, 14, who police say died of gunshot wounds in their home on the 1000 block of South 12th Street.
GRAND FORKS -- Police have opened a homicide case -- but aren’t currently seeking any suspects -- after a Grand Forks woman and her three children were found dead in their home Thursday morning. The bodies of Astra Volk, 35, and her children Arianna Talmage, 6, Aidan Talmage, 10, and Tyler Talmage, 14, were found in their home on the 1000 block of South 12th Street during a welfare check requested by Lewis and Clark Elementary School, where the two younger children were students.