Dressed in Cougar Red, they conduct campus tours and answer myriad questions about SIUE and the region. The tours are offered through the Admission Counseling and Recruitment Office, Mondays through Saturdays. In addition to campus tours, the STARs also visit high schools, attend college fairs, assist admissions counselors, and participate in community outreach. And, it's all volunteer work.
"We have a group of dedicated students," says Tracy Nelson, an admissions counselor and coordinator of the STARs program, and a former member of the old Ambassadors organization when she was a student at SIUE. The Ambassadors were part of the university's Information Center but were not necessarily working closely with the Office of Admissions.
The STARs program, on the other hand, is coordinated through the Admissions and Recruitment office and is more a part of the office's mission. "It's difficult for students to give up their time, but these students, many of whom are at SIUE on scholarship, are very dedicated," Nelson said. "The program has grown from 15 to 40 students."
Tami Diorio of Champaign and Jenny Meyer of southwest Chicago are STARs and they believe the program has helped them become more involved in university life. "I like talking with prospective students," says Meyer, a senior studying speech language and pathology. "It makes me proud when I show them the campus and they react positively.
"And, in the four years I've been a part of STARs, we've all become closer," she said. "In addition to the tours, we also do service projects as a group, such as Christmas caroling for canned goods for the food pantry, nursing home visits, and walk-a-thons. We also participate in social events."
Diorio, a junior majoring in Business, says the spring reception with prospective students is one event she looks forward to within the STARs program. "All of us are able to get together but also it gives us an opportunity to show parents that college students can be nice and also professional. It helps allay any fears they might have about sending their child off to college," Diorio said. "It's also a source of pride to me when the following year I bump into some of those same kids who decided to attend SIUE. I feel like we make a difference in the recruiting effort."
Nelson echoes that sentiment. "Chancellor Werner mentioned the successful recruitment effort by Admissions in his state of the university address last fall and he gave a plug for the STARs program," she pointed out. "STARs can take some of the credit for increased enrollment. We find that prospective students really relate to STARs members."
Boyd Bradshaw, director of Admissions, agrees. "Once our admission counselors meet the students on the road, it is very important that the students perception of our University remain positive," Bradshaw said. "There is no one better than current SIUE students to convey this perception.
"Since my arrival here this past summer, it has been a wonderful experience working with the STARs," he said. "Several of our STARs correspond with students via e-mail and we have set up an interactive Web site to make sure STARs are answering a student's question.
"The Web site is http://www.admis.siue.edu/stars and has become a valuable tool in the University's recruitment efforts."
Women's and Men's Basketball will help fuel the excitement for Homecoming 2000 from Thursday through Saturday. In addition to games against IUPU-Ft. Wayne on Thursday, Feb. 3, and against St. Joseph's College on Saturday, Feb. 5, activities include coronation of a Homecoming king and queen and the Homecoming Dance, as well as a pep rally and an alumni basketball game.
Here's a complete schedule of events:
• Wednesday-Thursday, Feb. 2-3, Homecoming King and Queen Voting, 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Goshen Lounge.
• Thursday, Feb. 3, Pack the Gym, Women's and Men's Basketball plays host to IUPU-Ft. Wayne, 5:30 and 7:30 p.m., respectively, Vadalabene Center; "Afterset" dance in the gymnasium follows men's game.
• Friday, Feb. 4, Pep Rally at Noon in Goshen Lounge; Talent/Variety Show, 9 p.m., Meridian Ballroom.
• Saturday, Feb. 5, SIUE Alumni Basketball Game (Men and Women), 11:30 a.m., Vadalabene Center; Homecoming Game: Women's and Men's Basketball play host to St. Joseph's College, 1 and 3 p.m., respectively, Vadalabene Center; during halftime of men's game, Homecoming King and Queen 2000 will be crowned and past SIUE Alumni Association presidents will be honored; SIUE Alumni reception, 5 p.m., Student Fitness Center; Homecoming Dance (informal), 9 p.m., Meridian Ballroom.
• Sunday, Feb. 6, Homecoming Brunch, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Morris Center Restaurant.
Thanks to a $100,000 contribution from TheBANK of Edwardsville, the School of Business recently dedicated a newly renovated classroom that is receiving rave reviews from faculty and students alike. TheBANK's generous gift resulted in the transformation of a "barn-like" classroom in Alumni Hall to a modernized, comfortable learning environment. Featuring theatrical-style seating for 100-plus students, stylish, contemporary furnishings, and a computer port for Internet access and large-screen projections, the room is already in high demand from School of Business instructors. The university and the School of Business welcomed representatives of TheBANK and guests to a dedication reception that officially opened the renovated space. Shown here during the ribbon-cutting are Dean Robert Carver, Chancellor David Werner, and Robert Wetzel, president of TheBANK. (SIUE Photo)
Shown here are the winners of this year's Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. awards. At left is Jorge Garcia of Glen Carbon, winner of the MLK Jr. Scholarship and Humanitarian Award, and S. LaVernn Wilson, director of the SIUE Early Childhood Center, winner of the MLK Jr. Faculty-Staff Humanitarian Award.
It's good news and bad news-you're the parent of a student who's decided to go to college … but you've got to figure out how to pay for it.
Well, here's some good news: SIUE will offer a financial aid workshop, to help you get the aid process started, at 1 p.m. Saturday in Alumni Hall, Room 2401. It's free and open to everyone, not just parents and students who will attend SIUE. It will last about one hour.
"Many students already have chosen a school or are narrowing their choices," said Marian Smithson, SIUE's director of financial aid. "As these choices are being made, it's important that parents and students keep in mind that there is a process for obtaining aid. And that process needs to begin now."
Workshop participants should register in advance by calling 650-3880 and bring their 1999 W2s and 1999 tax forms (if completed). Presenters will briefly explain the aid process and then walk attendees through completion of the form, item by item.
February is Financial Aid/Admission Awareness Month (FAAM) in Illinois. Smithson, who is also Past National Chair of the Direct Loan Coalition, said that in addition to information available on SIUE's Web site (www.finaid.siue.edu), the FAFSA on the Web site (www.fafsa.ed.gov) also provides information on the financial aid application process.
"There is a popular misconception that college is not affordable, or barely affordable," she said. "SIUE has a commitment to accessibility for all, and provides a quality education at a very affordable price. Additionally, we, along with many other institutions across the state, are doing our best to help students and parents understand that aid is obtainable."
The Arkansas Repertory Theatre returns to the Arts & Issues stage on Feb. 3 and 4 to perform the Tony-nominated Broadway hit, Blues in the Night, a celebration of such musical legends as Bessie Smith, Alberta Hunter, Duke Ellington, and many other American favorites.
To be presented both days at 7:30 p.m. in Katherine Dunham Hall, Blues in the Night is part of the 15th annual season for Arts & Issues, a series featuring quality entertainment and provocative presentations. The event is made possible by grants from the Heartland Arts Fund and the Illinois Arts Council.
Set in 1938 Chicago, the musical has been called a "hot, steamy celebration of survival, expressed through the soul-wrenching music that is the blues." It is an emotional journey "from the depths of despair to the heights of anxious love."
Arts & Issues Coordinator Richard Walker says the play is another example of the quality of presentation by the Arkansas Repertory Theatre. "The Arkansas Rep brought Smoke on the Mountain in 1997 and The Rainmaker in 1995 to Arts & Issues audiences and we are pleased to have them back," Walker said. "The Rep continues to garner national attention for its development of new plays and for its national touring productions.
Admission includes free parking in the lots behind the Morris University Center or Dunham Hall. For ticket information, call (618) 650-2626, or, write: Arts & Issues, SIUE, Edwardsville, IL 62026-1083; or by e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about the 1999-2000 season, view the website: http://www.siue.edu/ARTS_ISSUES.
Actor Edward James Olmos, best known for his role in Stand and Deliver and for his Emmy-award winning work in Miami Vice, will appear Feb. 17 as part of the Arts & Issues series at Siue.
In its 15th season of presenting quality entertainment and provocative presentations, the Arts & Issues series presents Olmos, known as the "Olivier of the Latino World," at 7:30 p.m. in Meridian Ballroom.
A producer, director, and community activist, Olmos recently launched an unprecedented nationwide multimedia project introducing Americanos to Americans. During his SIUE appearance, he will profile famous and not-so-famous Latinos to emphasize the value of diversity.
In addition to his presentation that evening, Olmos also will participate in a student open forum, "We Are All in the Same Gang," at 5 p.m. that day in the Faculty Club on the second floor of the Morris Center. The forum is co-sponsored by the SIUE Latin Awareness Student Organization, the University Center Board, and the Kimmel Student Leadership Development and Volunteer Services program.
According to Arts & Issues Coordinator Rich Walker, Olmos is not only a celebrated actor but also is well known for his many humanitarian efforts. "Edward Olmos is very active with UNICEF and also is a national spokesman for such organizations as the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation," Walker said. "We are proud to present this man to our Arts & Issues audience as an example of someone in a celebrated position who has given back to the community in many ways."
Admission to the Feb. 17 event is $8; students, $4, and includes free parking in the visitors' lot behind the Morris Center. For ticket information, call (618) 650-2320, or, from St. Louis toll-free, (888) 328-5168, Ext. 2320; write: Arts & Issues, SIUE, Edwardsville, IL 62026-1083; or by e-mail: email@example.com.
The SIU Board of Trustees recently appointed Frank E. Horton, Ph.D., as interim president of SIU. Horton will take over the duties of departing president Ted Sanders, who leaves Feb. 1.
A former vice president for academic affairs and research at SIUC, Horton most recently was president of the University of Toledo from 1989 until his retirement in December 1998. Previously, Horton was president of the University of Oklahoma from 1985-1988.
He also held academic and administrative positions at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, the University of Iowa, and Lake Forest College. He is currently principal partner of Horton & Associates, an education consulting firm.
Horton is a graduate of Western Illinois University (BS '63) and Northwestern University (MS '64, Ph.D. '68). The board sought the input and advice of the Presidential Search Advisory Committee prior to making the decision to appoint Horton. The advisory committee is composed of faculty, staff, and students from SIUE and SIUC.
The appointment is effective for six months, beginning Feb. 1. Horton will be paid $20,000 per month; he will not be a candidate for the permanent position of president.
Celebrate Arts Week from Feb 14-18 with several events and opportunities on campus. Here's a complete schedule:
• Special exhibit, Focus On Careers in the Arts, Tuesday-Thursday, Feb 15-17, at the Career Development Center on campus.
• Undergraduate Art Exhibit at new Wagner Gallery on-going for the week
• Thursday, Feb. 17, Arts and Issues presents actor Edward James Olmos, speaking bout the value of diversity (see main story in this edition of The O).
• Friday, Feb 18, Noon Jazz Concert in Goshen Lounge; Pack the Gallery! Undergraduate Exhibition at New Wagner Art Gallery in the Art & Design Building, with reception from 5-7 p.m.; Pack the Theater Night! 7-10 p.m. at Dunham Hall for performances of Keely and Du by Jane Martin and Poof by Lynn Nottage (see story elsewhere in this edition), followed by a Celebration of the ARTS party in the lobby, co-sponsored by the Office of Student Affairs and the College of Arts and Sciences; and A New Show at 7 p.m. in Meridian Ballroom by the St. Louis Black Repertory Company.
Jane Martin's award-winning play, Keely and Du, on a double bill with Poof by Lynn Nottage, will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Feb. 18-19 and 25-26, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 27, all in SIUE's Katherine Dunham Hall theater. Keely and Du, about a fundamentalist Christian group that kidnaps a pregnant woman, is a volatile portrayal that deals with issues on both sides of the question of legalized abortion. Poof is a one-act comedy about a woman who "damns her husband to hell" with remarkable results. Both plays are for adult audiences. Shown here, in a scene from Keely and Du, are cast members Randall Middleton as Walter, Wendy Greenwood as a women's prison guard, Rachel Tiemann as Keely, and Sarah Maxfield as Du. Tickets are $7; SIUE faculty and staff, senior citizens, and students, $5. For ticket information, call the SIUE Fine Arts box office, (618) 650-2774, or, from St. Louis toll-free, (888) 328-5168, Ext. 2774. (SIUE Photo)
The SIUE Child Development Program at the East St. Louis Center, for children ages 2-6, is accepting applications. The program offers daily play, field trips, and art experiences in a program that stresses math, health, safety, language, arts, social science, music, computer skills, and dance. The program is open to all Illinois residents who are employed or in school. For more info, call 482-6971, or pick up an application at the ESLC, 411 E. Broadway, East St. Louis.
The SIUE Dental Implant Clinic wants you to know:
• Dental implants are the latest technology in tooth replacement;
• Dental implants are stronger than bridges or dentures;
• Dental implants do not require disurbing healthy teeth; and
• Dental implants are the next best thing to re-growing missing teeth.
For more information, call your dentist or the SIUE Dental Implant Clinic, (618) 650-5062.