Thanksgiving Letter From President Friedrich

Happy Thanksgiving! I wish it was possible to be with you in person today as we celebrate Thanksgiving together as CSP faculty and staff.

However, I give thanks for all of you and the work you do to prepare our students for “thoughtful and informed living, for dedicated service to God and humanity, for enlightened care of God’s creation, all within the context of the Christian Gospel.” What we do here at Concordia is a team effort where everyone is a significant contributor to our collective successes.

Our theme verse from Psalm 23, “He restores my soul,” is serving our community well this academic year. I pray that each of you have a personal sense of how God is restoring you individually, just as He collectively restores our community in service of our students, our community, and our world. 

Each of you has had your own personal and professional challenges as we’ve navigated the past 18 months. Yet, despite what seems like constant pivots and disruptions, you’ve led and served our students graciously and thoughtfully. I commend you for your good work and want you to know that our board, executive leadership team, and I see, appreciate, and commend your hard work and diligent efforts.

Laurie and I were grateful to meet and get to know many of you better at the social hours we hosted this fall at the President’s Residence and through other in-person events. God has blessed Concordia with people who are both professionally gifted and talented and personally caring and engaging. You are our greatest resource, and God has blessed CSP and most importantly, our students, through you.

Last week, you may have seen a summary of the Great Colleges to Work For survey results in the CSP Digest. I appreciate each one of you who responded to the survey. Thank you for your constructive, honest, and thoughtful feedback. Your responses detailed many of the things we do well here, like clarity of roles and responsibilities, how well we collaborate and work together, and how well managers and department chairs support and lead their teams.

At the same time, you identified areas in which we can improve, including communication, appreciation, transparency in governance, and decision-making. We take your feedback seriously, and, working together with you, will use it to continue leveraging our strengths and improving our growth areas. We are committed to making CSP a great university at which to work.

Finally, for those who work in St. Paul, please make plans to join Laurie and me for the President’s Christmas Reception on Friday, December 10 at 5 pm. For our colleagues in Portland, we are working on an event in conjunction with commencement. It will be wonderful to celebrate Jesus, the one who restores our souls, as we conclude a successful semester together. More details on both events to come soon. 

I thank God for each one of you, and pray that you have a blessed Thanksgiving.

Much joy,

Brian L. Friedrich


Fire Near CSP Campus Saturday Aug. 21


Many blessings on this day the Lord has made. I pray your rest and worship have refreshed you this weekend.

Saturday night, as some of you may be aware, a three-alarm fire occurred just north of the Selby Avenue bridge immediately west of our Kohler Building (west of the baseball field. The blaze totally destroyed the building to our west. It was used as a storage facility for tires and a host of other items. The Kohler building was spare complete destruction. However, two new vehicles used by our Sodexo partners were destroyed as were some of the other contents. We do not yet have a full estimate of the damage. The Kohler building has been used by CSP for decades as the location of our building department’s shop.

The Fire Marshall has launched an investigation into the cause of the fire and our assessment and clean-up efforts begin in earnest tomorrow. We are grateful for the tremendous work done by St. Paul Fire and Rescue and Police Departments to battle the blaze, secure the area and divert onlookers from the fire. The blaze began about 6:00 pm last night. The crews worked through the night and Sunday morning one of the fire department “towers” was still pouring water onto the burn site. Saturday night there were 5 towers battling the blaze at one point. Overall there were 16 fire crews and a total of 86 emergency service personnel on-site.

The property destroyed is one that we have worked to acquire over the years without success. Perhaps the owner will now be more open to selling the property to us. Because it is adjacent to both the baseball and softball complex and Parking Lot D it would be an ideal location to acquire and would provide several options for expansion to the southwest side of the campus.

As additional information is available, I will communicate it with you. Our Critical Incident and Sodexo teams did a great job supporting the work of the fire department. Our RAs, who are on campus for training, also did an excellent job of helping to secure the area and to bring water to the firefighters.

God is so good and continues to bless CSP abundantly. His Guardian Angels attended many last evening.

God’s peace be with you,


Fox story HERE

Instructions to Update Your CSP Email Signature

Email is our main form of communication in the information age and one of the easiest ways to communicate Concordia’s brand to others including current and prospective students, alumni, donors, vendors, and many others in our community. Because of this, CSP has taken the opportunity to update our email signature. We have created a few important guidelines to employ moving forward. Thank you for your help in delivering a consistent and unified message.

Please review the “do’s” and “don’ts” of your Concordia email signature. It’s important that the guidelines are followed closely to ensure that every email sent from a email address presents our brand consistently.

Every email signature must include the following:

  • Full Name
  • Title
  • Office Phone
  • Concordia Email Logo

Please follow these steps to update your email signature:

  • Enter all of your personal information into the format below (please do not change colors or fonts).
  • Your Name Here
    Concordia University, St. Paul
    Your Job Title Here
    Your Department or Office Goes Here
    P: 651.641.8888  |  C: 651.641.8888  |  F651.641.8888
  • Add text portion of signature to the email client of your choice.


  1. Open Gmail.
  2. In the top right corner, click the gear icon, then Settings.
  3. In the “Signature” section, paste the text portion of your signature in the box.
  4. Click the add picture button.
  5. Paste image URL in the window (
  6. ) and click select.
  7. Click the image and choose the “large” size.
  8. At the bottom of the page, click Save Changes.


  1. Open Outlook
  2. Go to File then Options. On the Mail tab, go to Signatures.
  3. In the “Signature” section, paste the text portion of your signature in the box.
  4. Click on the inserting picture icon.
  5. Paste image URL in the window (
  6. ) and click Insert. 

Acceptable Additions

  • Links to University-sponsored web page
    • All links must be attached to text; no links should be typed out.
  • Cell phone numbers
  • Fax number
  • Advancement related buttons, such as “Give Now”
  • Academic Department or Office 
  • Office location

 Unacceptable Additions

  • Links to any personal social media channels
  • Links to any personal websites, including blogs
  • Any images, including headshots, non-CSP logos, or photos of cats.
  • Personal quotes
  • Links to any websites not affiliated with Concordia St. Paul
  • Social media icons (they tend to break when viewed on different email platforms)
  • Non-standard fonts

Once complete, your signature should look like this:

CSP Email Signature

Cybersecurity Reminder – 2020 Data Breach Investigation Report Reveals 85% of Incidents Involve Human Element

People and behaviors are an important part of any data security program in an organization.  Your effort to protect your accounts and passwords is so important.  Recently, a report was generated on the public data breaches of 2020.  The report created by Verizon cited 85% of those data breaches had a human component to them.  They found most data breaches occur because of phishing, lost or stolen credentials, using insecure credentials, human error, misuse, and even malware that has to be clicked then downloaded.  We ask you as CSP community members to stay diligent in protecting our organization.  Here are a few reminders on ways to safely use technology:

  • Never share your passwords with anyone else
  • Make sure you are using different passwords for different sites
  • Always confirm the origin of the e-mails that you receive.
  • Never click on a link that looks suspicious.
  • Use Multifactor authentication whenever possible.

Your work is so important to the health of Concordia University, St. Paul.  Thank you for your work in protecting the data of CSP.

Orthopedic Injuries and Mental Health: What’s the Connection?

Summit physical therapist Joe Herdzina, PT, DPT, OCS, SCS, explores the connection between orthopedic injury and mental health struggles like depression and anxiety.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Although you may not think that mental health challenges like depression and anxiety are connected with orthopedics, for many people, the two are interlinked. At times, orthopedic issues can certainly cause these problems due to limited mobility, limited social interaction, inappropriate education, and outsized expectations for healing. Read on to learn about the connection between orthopedic problems and mental health struggles.

There is a significant connection between reduced mobility, chronic pain, and mental health challenges like depression. “The simplest way to think about the connection among these is that they all start in the brain,” said Summit physical therapist Joe Herdzina, PT, DPT, OCS, SCS. “People who have decreased mobility as a result of injury have an increased risk of developing a depressed mood. They also may be missing out on the hormone boost that active movement and exercise can provide. It’s a vicious cycle of negative thoughts, which feed on each other and increase the difficulty of starting to move again.”

In addition, 30 to 50 percent of people with chronic pain also have depression and anxiety. So if you are dealing with orthopedic injuries, surgeries, or conditions that are causing chronic pain, what can you do to avoid mental health challenges as well? Here are some tips.

Tip 1: Take a holistic approach

 When your physical pain and orthopedic symptoms are affecting your mood, it can be helpful to try things like mindfulness exercises and meditation. Both of these can reduce pain and boost mood. To get started, there are many great YouTube videos, smartphone apps, and other free or low‐cost resources. Another idea is to listen to music that gives you enjoyment — anything that can provide a mood boost.

Tip 2: Get moving to improve orthopedic symptoms and boost mental health

It may seem counterintuitive to recommend movement and exercise to a person struggling with limited movement ability and pain. But it can really help. Studies show that even walking 6,000 steps a day can reduce joint pain in as little as six weeks for arthritis sufferers.

You don’t have to start a complex new workout regimen. Instead, start small. A simple walk around your neighborhood is a great first step.

“The first step is always the hardest,” Herdzina said. “But the benefits are real, and they’re significant.”

Tip 3: Get support

Use your peer group — friends, family, associates — to help you break the cycle of reduced mobility, pain, and mental health challenges. It can also be helpful to take a team approach, combating the problem from many angles. For example, some people, Herdzina said, could benefit from working with a physical therapist, a pain specialist, and a mental health therapist.

“Working with a team can help you put together a plan to help you feel better, with concrete steps to take,” Herdzina said.

Tip 4: Be kind to yourself for good orthopedic and mental health

Practicing self‐compassion is an important way to break the grip of depression and anxiety caused by pain. There are a variety of stress‐reduction therapies that can give you the mental clarity and energy you need.

Finally, in some cases, your doctor may recommend medication to deal with symptoms of depression or anxiety. Don’t be afraid to get help. It may be worth it to help you feel better after an injury or surgery.