Our view: Explaining a fresh idea gone sour


As an alternative, it was beset by failures that fell, as our reporting employees famous, “like dominoes towards its success.”

An extended report that begins on at present’s Web page A1 tells the story of GET, from its optimistic begin by way of a tailspin that led to its unflattering demise.

The Herald started this challenge months in the past, when a pressured retirement and resignations mounted all through the enterprise arms of the College of North Dakota.

Bruce Gjovig, CEO for the UND Middle for Innovation, retired within the spring, however later informed the Herald he was pushed to resign.

Margaret Williams, dean of the UND School of Enterprise and Public Administration, abruptly left in the course of the second semester and took a job as dean at one other college.

Tim O’Keefe, chairman of the UND Faculty of Entrepreneurship, accepted an early buyout within the spring and left the varsity.

The contract for La Royce Batchelor, a UND enterprise teacher and the one answerable for the GET challenge, was not renewed.

And Kristi Mishler resigned as director of the Grand Forks Group Basis. She wasn’t a UND worker however headed the group that offered funding for the GET undertaking.

All of these departures got here inside a couple of months of one another. There have been purple flags throughout.

What adopted have been quite a few requests by the Herald for paperwork — official and unofficial — from UND. As a result of these are public data, that’s our proper, and we did it to the tune of 15,000 pages of paperwork, costing greater than $1,000 in charges.

It additionally resulted in hours of interviews among the many principals related to GET.

What did we discover?

Nothing unlawful, and in addition that the exodus from the enterprise faculty evidently is not associated to GET. A scarcity of early, and constant, funding ultimately doomed it.

However by means of our investigation we uncovered finger-pointing, infighting on the college, asbestos on the Grand Cities Mall, a excessive quantity of stress and far of the seed cash—grants amounted to $70,000—down the drain.

Within the days main as much as publication of this report, Batchelor requested copies of all interviews carried out between her and Herald reporters, in addition to “an inventory of everybody interviewed on the request of my lawyer.”

The Herald refused her request.

The dying of GET was not from a fantastic sword throughout its proverbial neck, however as an alternative from quite a few small darts to its physique. The Herald presents it to readers immediately as a portrait of a recent concept turned bitter, and in hopes that readers higher perceive the pitfalls of entrepreneurship and…



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