Challey Spotlight: Kaitlyn Mohler

The Challey Institute for Global Innovation and Growth is highlighting the impact of our faculty and students at NDSU and in the community. This month, we are shining a spotlight on Kaitlyn Mohler.

Challey Spotlight: Kaitlyn Mohler

Freshman, Business Management

Kaitlyn Mohler is a freshman studying business management. Originally from Blaine, MN, she came to NDSU with the goal of pursuing her education to become a human resources manager. Kaitlyn is a first-generation student who says her parents always encouraged her to go to college. She is an inaugural recipient of the First-Generation Business Scholarship supported by the Challey Institute and the Ronald and Kaye Olson Deanship for NDSU’s College of Business. She is also a recipient of the Business Passport Scholarship, which is supported by the Challey Institute, the Olson Deanship, and the President Jim Ozbun Endowed Chair of Entrepreneurship.

Challey Institute activities: First-Generation Business Scholarship recipient; Business Passport Scholarship recipient; Menard Family Distinguished Speaker Series; Human Progress and Flourishing Workshop

Why did you decide to pursue your education at NDSU?

I initially started thinking about NDSU because of a college fair at my high school. NDSU had a rep there, and they had a perfect response for like every single question. I was just really impressed with their knowledge. And then after I toured NDSU, I really just fell in love with campus and thought, “Yeah, this is where I’m going.”

Why did you decide to major in business management, and what are your long-term career goals?

Honestly, I was required to take those “what-do-you-want-to-be-when-you-grow-up” tests in high school, and a lot of them came back with the result of human resources. So I started looking into the career, and it really seemed like something I would like to do. I took a PSEO class on human resources management, and I fell in love with it. [With my career goals,] I’m kind of hoping for the top. There are not a lot of women managers or CEOs at the top of the food chain, so I really want to set that example in my career.

The Challey Institute and the College of Businesses hosted several speakers throughout the semester, and students had an opportunity to earn a passport scholarship by attending these events. What did you enjoy about participating in this program?

First, I think it’s really good to have those incentives because when students go to these programs, there are a lot of different ideas and perspectives that are presented. I myself learned so much. I think it’s really important to bring that diversity to all different majors, not even just business.

The Human Progress and Flourishing Workshop is a new, unique course at NDSU. As a freshman, what was the experience like learning from the different guest speakers and class discussions?

I have never had a class like that before. It was very interesting. In terms of speakers, once again, they just brought so many different ideas; I mean, from religious economics to the rural brain gain – I always heard of the rural brain drain, so it was really interesting to hear Ben Winchester talk about that – and then in the class discussions, we really got to debrief about the presentations and discuss our ideas based off of what they gave us.

How have scholarships and philanthropy made a difference for you at NDSU?

As a first-generation student, I didn’t really know what I was walking into, so it really helped take the stress off of the first semester and let me ease into the start.

The Sheila and Robert Challey Institute for Global Innovation and Growth aims to advance understanding in the areas of innovation, trade and institutions to identify policies and solutions that enhance economic growth and opportunity. Learn more at
A photo of Kaitlyn Mohler
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