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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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September 3, 2009 Campus Newsletter

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Chris Frederick: Appointed Trustee

Chris FrederickStudent Christopher Frederick has been appointed to the Minnesota State College & Universities Board of Trustees by Gov. Tim Pawlenty. Chris will serve as a state university student member in a two-year term that expires June 30, 2011.

"I'm delighted that the governor has appointed Chris to the Board of Trustees, and that he, as one of our alums and a current student, will represent all two- and four-year students to the board," said President Richard Davenport. "Chris was one of our most engaging, charismatic and energetic student body presidents, and I know those attributes will serve him well in his newest leadership position. I look forward to working with Trustee Frederick."

Chris, of Mankato, is working toward a Master of Science degree in engineering. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering in 2008. A 2007-2008 president of the university's Minnesota State Student Association, Chris is recent past state chair and interim executive director of the Minnesota State University Student Association. Before serving as student body president, he was a student senator from the College of Science, Engineering & Technology.

Julieta Alvarado: Fulbright Scholar

Julieta AlvaradoOnline music faculty member Julieta Alvarado has been named U.S. Fulbright Senior Scholar in Panama for 2009-2010, her second Fulbright Scholar award. She is the second Minnesota State Mankato faculty member to receive a Fulbright Scholarship this year.

Julieta, an award-winning harpsichordist and musicologist, has been invited to teach the music seminars "Baroque Music" and "Colonial Music of the Americas" at the University of Panama this fall. She will research her topic, "Danzas y Bailes: Documenting Oral traditions of Colonial Panama," from June through August 2010.

She is the second Minnesota State Mankato faculty member to receive a Fulbright Scholarship this year. Rebecca Bates (Computer Science) is conducting her Fulbright research at the University of São Paulo from August through May 2010.

Julieta will continue to teach music online this academic year, as she has since 2008. Before coming to Minnesota State Mankato in 2001, Julieta received a three-year Fulbright Scholar award to conduct research on the keyboard music manuscripts at the Chiquitos Music Archives in Bolivia. This research is scheduled for publication in 2010.

She holds Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music. She has presented recitals and lectures in many European and Latin American countries. Her performances are routinely featured on Minnesota Public Radio.

She also is a member of the online faculty at Lake Superior College and the music faculty at Southwest Minnesota State University, Marshall.

The Fulbright Scholars Program, America's flagship international educational exchange activity, is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, with additional funding by participating governments and host institutions.

President Richard Davenport, Jacqueline Lewis, John Seymour, and Michael Miller with the certificate

The Academy for Child and Family Studies has been designated as a national Approved Center of Play Therapy Education. From left: President Richard Davenport, Jacqueline Lewis (Counseling & Student Personnel), John Seymour (Counseling & Student Personnel) and Michael Miller (College of Education) with the certificate from the Association for Play Therapy.

Center of Play Therapy

The Minnesota State Mankato Academy for Child and Family Studies has been designated as an Approved Center of Play Therapy Education by the Association for Play Therapy.

Bill Burns, executive director of the association, said the center is among the nation's first to be designated as an approved center. The association recently launched its approved center program to acknowledge universities generating substantial play therapy research, publications, graduate instruction, supervised clinical experiences and other programs.

During its initial three-year approval period, the academy estimates it will offer introductory and advanced play therapy graduate instruction, supervised clinical experiences and supervisor training, and will generate articles for various professional publications. These programs may be applied to satisfy state licensing requirements and to earn the Registered Play Therapist and Registered Play Therapist Supervisor credentials conferred by the association.

The academy was founded in 2005 by John Seymour (Counseling & Student Personnel).

The association, a national professional society, believes play therapy is routinely utilized by thousands of licensed psychologists, social workers, counselors and marriage and family therapists.

Play therapy is a form of mental health counseling or psychotherapy by which licensed mental health professionals incorporate the use of play to better communicate with and help clients achieve optimal mental health.

Those who want more information may go to the association website.

READY! For Kindergarten

READY! For Kindergarten logoNext month Minnesota State Mankato will become the nation's first higher education institution to provide free training to help employees prepare their children and grandchildren for kindergarten.

The acclaimed READY! For Kindergarten program teaches parents, guardians and grandparents how to better prepare children for school. The simple activities are intended to foster pre-literacy, pre-math and social-emotional skills that are critical to long-term educational success.

The first class for employees will be Oct. 9. The five classes—for parents of infants through 5-year-olds—will be offered three times a year. The classes will be during the day, and participating parents and grandparents may take time away from work to attend class.

The program helps parents and guardians prepare their children for the first day of school, and is intended to enhance the relationship between parent and child. Its guiding principles are to:

  • Honor parents as a child's most influential teacher;
  • Foster important early learning experiences for children;
  • Instill children with joy for learning;

READY! For Kindergarten is coordinated locally by the Greater Mankato Early Learning Initiative, and got rave reviews last year when it was offered to employees of Carlson Craft and the community at large.

Emergency Text Messages

Star Alert logoFaculty, staff and students may get notification of weather and other campus emergencies with Star Alert—a new cell phone text messaging service intended to tell the community about campus situations that immediately threaten life and safety. The service is free unless students, faculty or staff who sign up are charged for incoming text messages.

Participants must be able to receive text or e-mail messages on their cell phones. The system will be used only in emergency situations.

In an emergency, Star Alert will send a text message to each participant's cell number and MavMail e-mail address. The notifications will be identified as "Star Alert" messages and will note the nature of the emergency, what action participants are to take, and where to find more information.

Star Alert also will notify participants if campus is closed or if classes are delayed or cancelled.

Those who wish to receive these notifications may subscribe online.

Test text messages will be sent out to subscribers immediately after signing up. Subscribers may cancel at any time.

Leadership Course for Those 50-Plus

The Vital Aging Network will offer its leadership program specifically designed for 50-plus adults starting in October, for the first time in Mankato.

"ALVA: Leadership Development for the Rest of Your Life," an eight-month program, will be offered through Minnesota State Mankato's University Extended Education Program. It starts Oct. 9 and meets the second Friday of each month through May.

The course is intended to help participants rediscover their lifework; understand the opportunities and barriers of leadership in later life; plan and implement a project providing leadership for the common good; and build a network for sharing ideas, knowledge and resources.

Twenty three organizations partner with the Vital Aging Network to support and promote the program—the only one designed specifically for older adults. Local partners include the Center on Aging, Minnesota River Area Agency on Aging, Mankato Area Lifelong Learners and the Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation.

More information and brochures are available online, or by calling (651) 917-4635. Registration and information is through University Extended Education at (507) 389-2572. Tuition for the eight-month program is $750, and scholarships are available.

Sept. 9: Faculty Writing Workshop

Graduate Studies and Research logoSix brown-bag writing workshops will be held this academic year, with the first on Wednesday, Sept. 9. The workshops are intended to provide faculty members with opportunities to learn about writing techniques, assignments and curriculum. Each will be from noon - 1 p.m.

  • An Introduction to Writing in the Classroom, Wednesday, Sept. 9, CSU 202: Will focus on Writing in the Disciplines and Writing Across the Curriculum.
  • Effective Writing Assignments, Wednesday, Oct. 21, CSU 202: Will focus on creating and evaluating writing assignments aimed to help students with written work.
  • Teaching the Assignment: Rhetorical Methodologies, Wednesday, Nov. 4, CSU 202: Introduction to writing techniques, to enable faculty to aid students with different writing situations.
  • Managing Time and Teaching Writing, Wednesday, Feb. 17, location to be announced: Will provide a variety of strategies and in-class exercises to help incorporate meaningful writing into the classroom.
  • Writing Assessment, Wednesday, March 31: Discussion, analysis and implementation of assessment strategies for writing.
  • Writing Pedagogies, Wednesday, April 21: The history of writing practices in the classroom.

Those who want more information may contact Kirsti Cole (English).

Sept. 9: Swim Lessons

Kids swimmingThe men's and women's swimming and diving teams will offer fall swim lessons for children of all ages and ability levels Saturday mornings and Wednesday evenings beginning Wednesday, Sept. 9.

The six-lesson programs will be at four levels, depending on experience, ability and age. Instructors have experience teaching children the skills necessary to learn how to swim, and will help refine skills needed to become an expert swimmer.

Three sessions of Wednesday evening lessons will be offered on six Wednesdays from Sept. 9 through Oct. 14: From 5:15-5:45 p.m., from 5:50-6:20 p.m., and from 6:25-6:55 p.m.

Four sessions of Saturday morning lessons will be held on six Saturdays from Sept. 12 to Oct. 17. Saturday sessions will begin at 9:15, 9:50, 10:25 and 11 a.m.

Each lesson will last 30 minutes and will take place at Highland Center pool. Cost for one session is $65 per child, with a $160 family maximum.

Those who want more information or wish to register may contact Andy Driska, assistant swimming coach, at 389-2538.

Sept. 14: Ford Lecture

Kathleen Cox, director of exploratory drug metabolism of the Schering-Plough Research Institute, will discuss the drug discovery process during the 20th annual Leonard A. Ford Lectureship Monday, Sept. 14.

Cox's lecture, hosted by the Department of Chemistry & Geology and titled "The Small-Molecule Drug Discovery Process: From Molecules to Medicine," will be at 7:30 p.m. in Room C121 of Trafton Science Center, followed by a reception.

Cox also will present, "Use of LC-MS/MS for Metabolite Characterization in Drug Discovery," at noon Sept. 14 in Ford Hall 216. Her lecture will discuss the discovery process for obesity/metabolic syndrome therapy, with the indication of type 2 diabetes. Students, faculty, staff and community members are welcome to attend both events.

Cox points out that the drug discovery process depends on a unique series of successful collaborations among different disciplines. The integrated efforts of biologists, chemists, clinicians, market experts and regulatory experts identify emerging fields and molecular targets for drug discovery, assess unmet medical needs and feasibility of success, and analyze the regulatory climate.

Sept. 16: Blood Drive

'I give blood. Will You?' pinUpward Bound will sponsor a Red Cross Bloodmobile blood drive Wednesday, Sept. 16, at Minnesota State Mankato.

Students, faculty, staff and the public may donate blood from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Centennial Student Union Ballroom. Appointments may be scheduled by calling (507) 389-1211 or by visiting and entering sponsor code 5952. Walk-ins also are welcome.

Sept. 17: Good Thunder

Dinty W. MooreThe Good Thunder Reading Series will kick off its 28th year of continuous programming with Ohio fiction and creative nonfiction writer Dinty W. Moore on Thursday, Sept. 17. Moore will visit with individual writers in the morning and be interviewed on KMSU-FM.

He will lead a discussion on the craft of writing at 3 p.m. in Centennial Student Union 284, and he will read from his published work at 7:30 p.m. in CSU 253. All events are free and open to the public.

Moore is the author of the memoir Between Panic & Desire and four other books. He has published essays and stories in The Southern Review, The Georgia Review, Harpers, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, Gettysburg Review, Utne Reader and CrazyHorse, and teaches in the creative nonfiction PhD program at Ohio University.

An interview with Ford, part of the "Authors in Transit" series on KMSU, will air Sept. 17, at 1 p.m., and on Friday, Sept. 18, at 11 a.m.

This year's Good Thunder Reading Series is funded by the Department of English, the College of Arts & Humanities, the Office of Institutional Diversity, the Nadine B. Andreas Endowment, the Eddice B. Barber Visiting Writer Endowment, the Robert C. Wright Endowment, and individual donors. It is made possible in part by a grant from the Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council from funds appropriated by the Minnesota Legislature, by a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, through a legislative appropriation, and by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Library Services and the Barnes & Noble Bookstore offer additional assistance.

For more information about the series, call Richard Robbins (English) at (507) 389-1354.

Sept. 19: 'Christmas Carol' Children

Painting of Scrooge walking down a streetThe Department of Theatre & Dance will hold auditions at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19, for nine children to appear in its production of "A Christmas Carol." The auditions will be in Ted Paul Theatre of the Performing Arts Center. Children should be between the ages of 5 and about 12.

Rehearsals for "A Christmas Carol" begin Oct. 5, and will be held in the evenings. Children will be called for limited rehearsal times and released early so as not to interfere with school. Anyone cast must be available for all performances: 7:30 p.m. Nov. 11-14, 19-21 and 28; and 2 p.m. Nov. 14, 15, 21, 22 and 29; plus two daytime school matinees on Monday, Nov. 23.

The show is directed by the show's adapter, Paul J. Hustoles (Theatre & Dance).

Those auditioning will be asked to sing and interact with others, but no preparation is required. Roles to be cast are:

  • The Boy—This actor will be a soloist and must be able to sing very well.
  • Boy Scrooge—This is Scrooge as a small boy.
  • Fan—This is Scrooge's little sister and eventual mother of Fred.
  • The Cratchits—This is Bob's beloved family. They have to be able to sing well because they sing a lot. They are Martha (the little mother), Peter (the man of the family when Dad is not around), Belinda, Henry, Kate and of course, Tiny Tim (who walks with a crutch and gets to speak the most famous line of the whole show).

Those who want more information about auditions may contact Paul at 389-2118.

Faculty/Staff Achievements

An article by John J. Janc (Modern Languages), "Observations of a Seasoned Program Director," was published in the summer 2009 issue of the Minnesota Language Review.

Stewart Ross (Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning) presented workshops at the University of Texas at San Antonio, the American University of Ras Al Khaimah in the Middle East and the University of Wisconsin-Superior in August. He worked with faculty at all three universities discussing topics such as integrated course design, rubric creation and active learning strategies for the classroom.


Do you have faculty, staff, student or departmental news for the biweekly campus newsletter? Send news items to newsletter editor Michael Cooper. The newsletter is published every other Wednesday during the academic year and monthly during the summer. The next newsletter will be published Sept. 16; the deadline for that newsletter will be the previous Friday (Sept. 11).

You should also submit your event to the university's official Campus Events Calendar. Go to the events calendar website, click on the self-service "Submit Event" link, and provide the information requested.