How an online student is making connections on campus

Lindsey Strendin
Lindsey Strendin in Alaska

University of Minnesota Crookston online student Lindsey Strendin of Fargo, North Dakota is making connections on campus despite not being physically present. Strendin discovered her passion for accounting in high school and made it her major. As a high school sophomore, she took her first accounting class and fell in love with the subject from the very start. It was her first class that she found both enjoyment and a sense of belonging. Like many U of M Crookston online students, Strendin's journey to online education has been filled with exciting adventures rather than a straightforward path.

The best advice Strendin received when she was deciding what to do was to not be afraid of trying new experiences, even if her family was concerned about the risks. She took a seasonal job in Montana at the age of 19 and lived in a cabin for four months with no access to the internet. By going to Montana, Strendin was able to have a life-changing experience and ultimately expand her horizons. She has traveled extensively since then with family and work opportunities including time in Alaska.

Strendin chose U of M Crookston for her online education because of its reputation and physical campus. The key benefit of online education for her is flexibility. Strendin had been an on-campus student at Concordia, but when she started working seasonal jobs the timing did not work out with her job obligations and the start of the semester. Online education offered Strendin the flexibility she needed to continue her education while pursuing other interests and work opportunities. This allowed her to travel and explore new experiences, including a job in Alaska. Being an on-campus student made college the center of her life, but with online education she is able to balance her education with other interests and responsibilities. The freedom to travel and pursue other passions while still pursuing a degree is a major advantage of online education for Strendin.

Strendin is currently a work study teammate at U of M Crookston for career services. Remote work with career services has been a great learning experience for her. Despite the initial challenge of limited internet access in Alaska, she was able to adapt and take on additional responsibilities such as design work and social media communication. Strendin is excited to use the skills she has learned in her future career and is always looking for new challenges. Tutoring has also been a great experience for her, giving her a chance to connect with people from all over the world and review the basics in her field.

Strendin has two internships lined up and is always looking for ways to challenge herself. In her free time, she enjoys snowshoeing and hiking. Her best advice to other students is to take risks while you explore career options and look at companies that they might find interesting.

Written for the Summer 2023 Torchlight e-Newsletter

Story Contact: Nan Thurston - - (218) 281-8557