MSU President's Newspaper Column

October 22, 2022 

Childcare is critical for families and employers

Mayville State University Child Development Programs (CDP) are providing invaluable services for the families of our region. Providing the best possible care for the young people who are the future of our society is paramount. I tip my hat to the extraordinary people who do this very noble work.

The Mayville State University Child Development Programs has locations throughout the region. Sites are located in Mayville on the campus of Mayville State University, Portland, Hillsboro, Central Valley (Buxton) School, Grand Forks, and the North Dakota School for the Blind on the campus of the University of North Dakota. In addition, Mayville State CDP works in partnership with the YMCA of Cass/Clay Counties. Through this arrangement, Mayville State CDP makes it possible for children to receive childcare in two of the Fargo-Moorhead area YMCA locations. The YMCA provides excellent quality services and is a fantastic partner.

In all, the Mayville State Child Development Programs serve 185 parents in Traill County. Fifty-four of those parents work in Agriculture. American Crystal Sugar is the larger employer of these families. Thirty-four parents work in education. Mayville State University is the largest employer of these families. Sanford Health is the largest employer of the 24 parents who work in health. Other parents are self-employed, while some work in engineering, construction, food services, plumbing, and as electricians.

Childcare is important not only in terms of the services and opportunities made available for children, it is also essential in terms of the economic impact that results. In order that they may work, parents must have appropriate care for their children. The impact of the Child Development Programs on families in the seven counties we serve is critical to those counties, the region, and the state. These parents help ship crops all over the world, educate future doctors and leaders, and provide essential services to our state. In these times of critical workforce shortages, childcare is of utmost importance.

Mayville State’s CDP sites are Traill County’s only Step 3 Quality rated programs. What does this mean? Mayville State works with Bright & Early ND to ensure that all children have high-quality early experiences that help them develop the skills they need to be successful in school, work, and life. Families can feel comfortable in knowing that the children enrolled in Mayville State’s childcare programs are receiving high-quality care that supports each child’s learning and development. The North Dakota Department of Human Services administers Bright & Early ND as a key strategy for quality improvement under North Dakota law.

Pre-school teaching has been identified as an in-demand occupation in the state of North Dakota. We know first-hand the difficulty of hiring qualified candidates to fill positions in the CDP. Mayville State’s Division of Education provides great opportunities for individuals wishing to pursue careers in childcare. We offer Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science in Education, and Associate of Arts degrees in early childhood.

MSU's Early Childhood Education program is designed to meet the needs of traditional and non-traditional students who are currently employed in the field of early childhood education. Those who complete the degree program will be prepared to make an impact in the lives of children from birth to age eight. Graduates will also be eligible to apply for a birth to third grade teaching license. The program prepares graduates to work in a variety of leadership positions, including early childhood administration, supervisory roles, curriculum specialists, and education coordinators in preschool programs. The program takes full advantage of online and distance learning opportunities to provide flexibility. Mayville State’s CDP sites provide internship and other relevant experiences for students in pursuit of early childhood degrees.

Childcare is a hot topic across our nation and state, and at Mayville State. We are committed not only to providing quality childcare for families in our region, we are steadfast in our efforts to educate individuals who can make a difference in this high-demand occupation. To learn more, contact us at 701-788-4710 or  To learn more about childcare options available through MSU CDP, call 701-788-4868 or email