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SIUE News Archives April 2013

April 2013

Reed Named Professor of the Year by SIUE Business Students

30 April 2013, 3:03 pm

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's Brad Reed, Ph.D., is the School of Business Professor of the Year. The accolade came Friday, April 25 from student organization Emerging Leaders Improving Through Experience (ELITE).

ELITE is a group of School of Business student leaders who serve as a liaison between students, faculty, alumni and others affiliated with the School. Junior accounting major and ELITE Vice President of Operations Steve Wilkerson said they wanted to recognize outstanding faculty in the School of Business.

"An online survey was sent via email to all School of Business undergraduate and graduate students," Wilkerson said. "The survey was not mandatory, and we received 165 responses."

Reed was honored to receive the award and appreciated the students putting together the program. "Thanks to all of my students, particularly those who took the time to fill out the nomination forms," he said. "I am fortunate to have talented students, because it is easier to be a good teacher when you have excellent students."

Although 44 professors were nominated, Reed won with overwhelming student support. Wilkerson said students found Reed to be welcoming and knowledgeable while allowing students to be unafraid to ask questions.

"Successful accounting classes have many elements in common with successful businesses," commented Reed. "I try to ensure that my classes provide something of value that will benefit students in their future careers."

Reed received a certificate of achievement and a $50 gift card courtesy of Fazoli's in Edwardsville.

SIUE's ELITE tabbed Dr. Brad Reed as Professor of the Year. Pictured (L to R): Chair and Accounting Professor Michael Costigan, Mitch Morecraft, Reed, Maeve Juenger, Steve Wilkerson, Lora Dust and School of Business Dean Gary Giamartino.

SIUE Alumni Speaker Series Focuses on Time Management

30 April 2013, 1:31 pm

The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Alumni Association speaker series focuses on time management at 12:30 p.m. Monday, May 20 at Birger Hall on the SIUE campus. For a preview, see the video.

Featured speakers are Dr. Zach Schaefer, assistant professor of speech communication in the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences, and Brian Henry '95 (mass communications), senior director of public affairs for Express Scripts. They will provide research-based tips and advice on how to best manage professional and personal commitments.

"Our goal is to help participants actively make the choice to use their time more wisely and prevent being a victim of time," Schaefer said. "Participants will have a greater understanding of efficiently maximizing their time. They will consider their professional and personal values and learn to prioritize their time in accordance with those values.

"We also will discuss helpful online time management tools, share effective time management techniques and highlight useful strategies to avoid wasting time."

Students, alumni and community members will discover that this hour-long presentation will enhance individual productivity and alter attitudes about time management. Thirty minutes of networking will follow the presentation.

The event is open to the public. Cost is $10 per person. SIUE student admission is free. Attendees may bring their own lunch or snacks. Cookies and beverages will be provided. Parking for this event at Birger Hall is free.

For more information or to register, visit the SIUE Alumni Association website.

NCERC's Caupert Supports Opportunity KNOCKS Legislation

29 April 2013, 3:44 pm

Press Conference Video

U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) discussed his Opportunity KNOCKS Act legislation this afternoon at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Davis spoke at The NCERC at SIUE: Advancing Biofuels Research. Center Director John Caupert and Doug Bauer, vice president of Economic Development and Innovative Workforce Solutions at Richland Community College in Decatur, joined Davis at the podium.

"In today's economy, an increasing number of jobs require some form of higher education, from technical certificates to college degrees," said Davis. "Unfortunately due to an overly complicated Workforce Investment Act system and an outdated unemployment insurance system, many Americans are faced with choosing between keeping their unemployment benefits and seeking additional training needed to find a job.

"The goal of this legislation is not to expand unemployment. Instead it would allow people to obtain new skills and help bridge the gap between what employees have and what employers need."

H.R. 1530, the Opportunity KNOCKS Act, introduced by Davis and U.S. Reps. Ami Bera (D-Calif.) and Jerry McNerney (D-Calif.), broadens the definition of "approved training" and makes certain that workers who are seeking an industry recognized certificate, an apprenticeship or an associate or baccalaureate degree will not be at risk of losing their unemployment benefits.

This legislation was drafted, in part, due to the real-life examples that Caupert provided Davis on the failures and short-comings of the current WIA. Davis has appointed Caupert to serve on the Congressman's Agriculture Advisory Council. Caupert will represent research, commercialization and educational efforts in biofuels development.

"Investment in education and workforce training is critically important to ensure a competent and qualified workforce for tomorrow's bioeconomy," Caupert said. "The Bio Economic Research Associates estimate that by 2016 an additional 380,000 new jobs could be created in rural America from the biofuels industry alone.

"By 2022, they estimate more than 800,000 new jobs could be created. Since January 2007, the NCERC has trained more than 600 unemployed or underemployed individuals and provided them the skills necessary to succeed in the new bioeconomy.

"So, who are the people in these new jobs? The majority of folks employed in the biofuels industry are men and women from America's heartland! They understand the value system of rural America. They understand the importance of sacrifice and giving something back. They understand the importance of preserving a way of life for future generations.

"I pledge my support for the 'Opportunity KNOCKS' legislation, and I encourage the United States Congress to pledge their support as well!"

Caupert is fresh from participating in the Senate Democratic Rural Summit in Washington, D.C. on April 25. As a result of Caupert's contributions to strengthening rural America, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) nominated him to represent Illinois at the Summit. The half-day session focused on revitalizing rural America through economic development and job creation. It also served as an opportunity to celebrate the innovations of rural Americans and share best practices used to strengthen communities.

Furst-Bowe Oversees First SIUE Spring Commencement

29 April 2013, 2:06 pm

Newly installed Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe will oversee her first Spring Commencement on Friday and Saturday, May 3 and 4. Ceremonies for the 1,886 eligible graduates will begin at 6:30 p.m. Friday in the Vadalabene Center on campus.

Furst-Bowe was officially installed as SIUE's eighth chancellor by SIU President Glenn Poshard on Friday, April 19, in ceremonies on campus. As her SIUE tenure began on July 2, 2012, Furst-Bowe is completing her first academic year.

Jerry and Mary Kane will be acknowledged as Distinguished Service Award recipients during the ceremonies. Mary Kane will address the graduates at each of the events except the 5 p.m. Saturday session. Mary Kane is senior vice president, public finance, for Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. in St. Louis. Jerry Kane serves as executive director of the Agency for Community Transit (ACT). Both are long-time SIUE supporters.

Dr. Kay Gaehle, associate professor in the Department of Primary Care and Health Systems in the School of Nursing, will receive the 2013 Teaching Excellence Award.

The festivities begin Friday night with the Graduate School, School of Business and School of Nursing students receiving their degrees. Kevin Caraker, who is earning a bachelor's in business administration, is the student speaker for Friday's session.

Ceremonies resume at 9 a.m. Saturday with the Graduate School and School of Education. The morning student speaker is Cassandra Sams, who is receiving a bachelor's in speech language pathology.

The Saturday afternoon ceremony begins at 1 p.m. with the College of Arts and Sciences followed at 5 p.m. by the School of Pharmacy, College of Arts and Science graduate students and the School of Engineering. The student speakers will be Student Government President Erik Zimmerman, who is earning a bachelor's in philosophy, during the afternoon session and Jessica Thompson, who is receiving a bachelor's in industrial engineering, closing the day.

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe greets a graduate at the Fall 2012 Commencement ceremony.

SIUE Early Childhood Center Receives Accreditation

29 April 2013, 11:17 am

The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the nation's leading organization of early childhood professionals, accredited the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Early Childhood Center.

"We're proud to have earned this mark of quality from NAEYC and to be recognized for our commitment to reaching the highest professional standards," said Rebecca Dabbs MacLean, director of the SIUE Early Childhood Center.

Only about 8 percent of all preschools and other early childhood programs in the country achieve NAEYC accreditation. Established 25 years ago, NAEYC accreditation has become recognized as a sign of high-quality early childhood learning.

In order to achieve accreditation, the center went through an extensive self-study process, measuring the program and its services against the 10 NAEYC Early Childhood program standards and more than 400 related accreditation criteria. An onsite visit was conducted by NAEYC assessors to ensure program standards are being met. NAEYC-accredited programs also are subject to unannounced visits during their accreditation period.

"NAEYC accreditation lets families in our community know that children in our program are getting the best care and early learning experiences possible," MacLean said.

Once accredited, programs maintain their accreditation for a 5-year period. For more information about NAEYC accreditation, visit For more information about the SIUE Early Childhood Center, visit

Third Graders Visit The Gardens at SIUE on Arbor Day

26 April 2013, 4:06 pm

More than 100 third-graders spent Friday learning about plants, birds, turtles and migration at The Gardens at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Four classes from Columbus Elementary School in Edwardsville visited The Gardens on Arbor Day for some nature-based activities and a time of fun.

"I like to garden," said Sela Shallow, nine-year-old daughter of Monica Shallow, who accompanied the group on the field trip as a parent volunteer.

"I like to garden, too," nine-year-old Aryanna Hudson chimed in. "I help my grandma plant and garden in the summer."

The two girls were with a group led by third-grade teacher Karen Cline. Students were divided into eight groups and sent out to explore the four different stations in the park, according to Jane Drake, director of The Gardens. About 15 people from SIUE and the community volunteered to help work at the stations. The names of the stations and what they pertained to included:

• Fill the Bill was the station where students learned about birds with a focus on how different beaks are adapted for specific food types. Obviously a hummingbird's diet is much different that that of an owl or a cardinal. Students learned about natural variation through trying a series of tools and feeding scenarios

• Migration Challenge taught students about the challenges of migration. According to Dan Mueller, The Gardens park supervisor, nearly 350 different species of birds migrate through our area annually. Students played the roles of common migrating birds. They "flew" to various locations that highlighted the good (finding food, tailwinds) and the bad (predation and food shortages). Students leave with a better understanding of how they can support migrating birds around their own homes.

• Turtle Talk informed students about various facts concerning turtles. Students got to handle the shells of two types of native turtles and explore Turtle Pond.

• Leaf Prints incorporated a lesson on the benefits of trees. Once students had explored different leaf types, they used paint to create unique leaf prints on cardstock to take home.

Teachers accompanying the students on the field trip were Cindy Cassens-Mickle, Karen Cline, Stephanie Raz and Megan Mulcahy.

"We are working on the unit, 'Lakes, Ponds, Rivers and Streams' in our science classes," said Cline. "We are also talking about ecosystems, the environment and pollution. "I hope the children will be able to understand how nature helps."

Cassens-Mickle, who helped plan the field trip, said she is grateful that school principal, Vince Schlueter, made it possible for the classes to visit The Gardens.

"Jane Drake and I are hoping to make this an annual event on Arbor Day," said Cassens-Mickle, an

SIUE alumnus. She received both her bachelor's in Education and her master's in Special Education from the University. "We want to better help children learn how trees, ponds and plants interact with our environment."

"It's been good hands-on learning for the students," said Mulcahy.

Cassens-Mickle hopes the school can return for another field trip to The Gardens. "A lot of these students live in Edwardsville," she said. "They can tell their parents, and can come back with them. It's good for The Gardens, and it's good for us."

Drake said while the park is growing, she is still working to get the word out about the botanical garden. "The Gardens at SIUE is still one of the metro-East's best kept secrets," she said. "Our Arbor Day event is just one of several ways that we connect our community to this wonderful place.

The Gardens at SIUE

The Gardens at SIUE comprises existing woodlands, a pond, grasslands and an arboretum on a lush and rolling 35-acre site. The Gardens is a living laboratory dedicated to supporting the educational and research mission of the University. Environmental sustainability, conservation and stewardship are cornerstones of The Gardens' vision, providing a unique opportunity to research, implement and demonstrate innovative green technologies. Gardens, facilities and amenities feature renewable, recycled and sustainably produced materials.

The mission of The Gardens at SIUE is to create a venue of beauty and distinction that will support the educational and research components of the University; that will engage the public in educational opportunity and campus life; and that will provide a haven for relaxation and enjoyment for all.

Photo Information: Third grade students at the "Leaf Prints" station, manned by Larry Werner, SIUE graduating senior majoring in biology. Students from left to right: Mia Heiser (daughter of Val Heiser in background), Bailey Krome, Kara Gilomen, Sela Shallow and Aryanna Hudson.

Volunteer parent Val Heiser helps her daughter Mia Heisere and Bailey Krome with their project at the Leaf Prints station.

Julie Furst-Bowe Leads Annual Chancellor's Walk

25 April 2013, 5:36 pm

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe led almost 100 staff, faculty and students through portions of the campus Thursday for SIUE's annual Chancellor's Walk. The Chancellor's Walk is held yearly in conjunction with the SIUE's Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair, and the SIUE Staff Senate Barbecue.

"It's a great tradition to be part of the walk," said Furst-Bowe, before leading enthusiasts on her first walk as SIUE chancellor. "It's also a beautiful day to get a little exercise and see what's happening on campus."

The theme of this year's walk was the growth on campus, according to Alex Holmes, fitness graduate assistant with Campus Recreation. Participants walked for about 1.5 miles through the Art & Design Building and the new west addition, around the Engineering Building and new Annex construction and alongside the new Science Building.

Before the walk, representatives from each of the buildings gave the crowd brief information about the structures.

Bill Retzlaff, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, talked about the benefits of now having the Art & Design Department under one roof. Mark Gritner, associate professor in Construction Management, let the audience know that remodeling for the Engineering Building should be completed in spring 2014. Kevin Johnson, director of the Environmental Sciences Program, mentioned several energy efficient and sustainable benefits of the new Science Building.

The brisk walk around campus in 62-degree weather lasted about 20 minutes.

"It's good to walk across campus," said Catrice Holmes, a graduating senior, majoring in biomedical sciences. "I can do it in my wedges and with a smile on my face."

"It's something fun to do with your colleagues," said Lora Miles, associate vice chancellor for Student Affairs.

Phil Brown, director of Institute Research and Studies, agreed. "It lets you take a break from the computer for a while and see some of the people you don't normally see," he said.

The annual walk resulted from the interest of former SIUE Chancellor Nancy Belck, said Mick Ostrander, director of Campus Recreation.

"She was an avid walker and her first or second year as chancellor she instituted the walk," Ostrander said about Belck.

Those participating in this year's walk had a chance to win a free one-year membership to the SIUE Student Fitness Center. This year's winner was Rita Lesemann, senior library specialist at Lovejoy Library.

Hundreds of staff and faculty took part in the health exposition. At the fair were several free screenings, administered by Anderson Hospital and the SIUE School of Pharmacy, and included blood pressure, body mass index, posture assessment, alignment evaluation and bone density. Participants also had an opportunity to talk with SIUE Benefits staff and view products and services provided by more than 50 vendors, most of whom offered free door prizes. The vendors consisted of local businesses and various SIUE schools, units and departments.

The day's events were kicked off with another SIUE tradition-the donning of a graduation cap on the SIUE Cougar Statue. Furst-Bowe and Erik Zimmerman, student body president, presided over the capping of the Cougar to the cheers of the 2013 graduating class.

Watch the video, .

Photo Information:

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe and Alex Holmes, fitness graduate assistant, leads the group past Engineering building and the new Annex construction.

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe and Kim Durr, executive assistant in the Office of the Chancellor, pick up water in the middle of the annual Chancellor's Walk.

Kristie Rees, of the School of Pharmacy, tests the blood pressure of Wendy Cauley, account tech II in Accounts Payable.

Pictured are SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe, Erik Zimmerman, SIUE student body president, and the SIUE Graduating Class of 2013.

"The Other 40" Showcases SIUE's Business Talent

25 April 2013, 5:12 pm

Winners of SIUE's "The Other 40" competition (L to R): Tiffany Smith, Kevin Caraker and Kenneth Knoth.

Roughly 60 percent of business enterprises fail within their first five years of existence, according to the Small Business Administration. As a result, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's School of Business and the Collegiate Entrepreneurs' Organization (CEO) hosted its 3 rd Annual "The Other 40" pitch competition. Held on Monday, April 8 in the Morris University Center, the competition showcased student entrepreneurship and innovation.

The competition's objective is to provide students with the resources, skills and incentives to launch their businesses from idea to incorporation. More than $10,000 in cash and support was awarded to the top three students or student groups based on innovation, achievement and growth potential.

"CEO created the competition in order to provide students with an opportunity to learn the essential skills needed to become an entrepreneur," said CEO President Jon Lee of O'Fallon, Ill. "It helps that we are at a university which is a controlled environment. It's a good opportunity to expose our students without the high risk that is in the real world."

Participants in the program took part in a series of entrepreneurship workshops aimed at building the skills they would need to succeed in the competition. The students were required to participate in three phases of the competition. In phase one, they submitted a one-page executive summary outlining their business plan. Those selected based on the one-page summary then submitted a full business plan. After reviewing the plans, the finalists made a "pitch," presenting their ideas in less than three minutes before a panel.

"While business ideas are great, they need research and analysis to see if they are true business opportunities and not just interesting ideas," commented CEO Faculty Advisor and Associate Professor of Management Tim Schoenecker. "The Other 40 competition provides the perfect forum for that type of analysis."

According to Lee, there were 33 submissions this year and a committee of judges determined the top eight. Graduate student Tiffany Smith won with her shared kitchen space concept "From House 2 Home." Smith's endeavor would allow home cooks, home bakers, culinary students and other "foodpreneurs" the ability to work in a health certified kitchen.

Smith, who is pursuing her master's in Education, is extremely thankful to CEO and the School of Business for encouraging entrepreneurship and providing this opportunity. "I am so excited that my passion came through to the judges," she said. "That and my well-researched business plan earned first place honor."

By winning first place, Smith receives $5,000 in financial support towards her endeavor as well as a support package to help pursue her business. While the financial reward was beneficial, Smith said that she is getting much more from this experience. "This opportunity means so much to my endeavor, not only financially, but also fundamentally, emotional support. It feels great to know that I am not the only one who believes my business will be successful."

Support for the competition comes from a $120,000 grant to the School of Business for entrepreneurship education from John, '75, and Eileen Martinson of Lawrenceville, N.J. through The Martinson Family Foundation.

"The Other 40" was created in 2011 by students, and the quality of the competition has grown significantly. "The quality of the competition was clearly deeper this year," Schoenecker said. "That showed up in the judges' ratings, which were quite close."

Winners of the 2013 "The Other 40" competition included:

• $5,000 for first place-Tiffany Smith, M.S. Ed, From House 2 Home Kitchens

• $2,500 for second place-Kevin Caraker, a senior business student, for Mr. Nice Guy (Mr. Nice Guy is a start-up bubble tea café set to be located in Edwardsville)

• $1,000 for third place-Kenneth Knoth, a sophomore biology, for LightRun (LightRun is a device that incorporates programmable track lighting onto different surfaces for exercise)

Finalists included:

•J.J. Akpore and Hassaan Stamps-Campus Carnage

•Volkan Yilmaz and Ece Bolat-Frog, Inc.

•Brad Denby-Maple Technologies

•Josh McDanel-Pillar to Post

•Phillip Webb-Good Ole' Boys Brewing

The SIUE School of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International, representing the highest standard of achievement for business schools worldwide. The Princeton Review lists SIUE as one of the top 296 business schools in the U.S. and abroad for the seventh consecutive year. Undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered in accounting, computer management and information systems, economics, finance, management and marketing. More than 23,000 alumni have earned degrees from the SIUE School of Business. For more information about the School of Business, visit:

Dynamic Dance Companies to Bring Chicago Dance Scene to Xfest

25 April 2013, 4:42 pm

Xfest 2013 will feature a variety of dance and theatre performances this summer from May 29- June 1 performed by companies that embrace the innovation of experimental theatre. Two of these companies will be welcomed to the SIUE campus to share the critical buzz they have earned in the Windy City: Chicago Dance Crash and The Seldoms.

Xfest is an annual summer festival celebrating experimental theatre. Created by Professor Peter Cocuzza and Associate Professor Chuck Harper, both in the SIUE Department of Theater and Dance, the festival invites theater and dance companies from around the nation to perform at the SIUE campus and introduce innovative elements to the campus and the community.

Crash will be presenting a sampling of its acclaimed pieces in Selected Works on May 30, and The Seldoms will present Exit Disclaimer: Science and Fiction Ahead, a production that addresses the current climate change debate, on June 1. Both performances will take place in the Metcalf Theater.

The Chicago-based companies are led by two talented, passionate choreographers who are excited to bring their work to Xfest 2013 to share with the SIUE, Metro East and St. Louis communities: Jessica Deahr and Carrie Hanson.

Deahr began working with Chicago Dance Crash in 2007, when she joined the company as a guest artist. She became a member of the company in 2009 and received her first opportunity to choreograph for the company in 2010. Her first show as choreographer was Gotham City, which proved to be immensely successful with a sold-out, six-weekend run at the Storefront Theater.

Since then, Deahr was named artistic director and continues to choreograph popular and compelling dance performances. She has also worked with many different dancers from varied backgrounds and skill sets at Crash, as the company strives to bring varied talent, and thus unique productions, to its stage.

"Crash is unique in that we draw from so many dance disciplines," said Deahr. "We cover everything from ballet to breakdance, jazz and hip hop to acro. Sometimes we feature one specific style, sometimes we fuse several of them together. In order to do so, our company dancers specialize in one area of dance but are capable of performing all styles, which gives us such a huge canvas to create with. "

Hanson, artistic director of The Seldoms, co-founded the company with a group of artists in 2001. Since its founding, The Seldoms has presented productions that tackle diverse social and economic issues that often take place in unique settings, like a truck garage, gallery spaces and an outdoor pool. Through dance, Hanson believes that the company has enabled her to express her voice, which has evolved and changed over the 10 plus years the company has been in existence.

"Dance is a great platform for me to think about, research and investigate larger concerns that I have," Hanson said. "That has defined the shift in my work lately around more issue-based work. For a while, it was site-specific work and that was the fascination for me. Now, some of my interest is in environmentalism and a general kind of interest in notions of wealth, definitions of wealth and how we decide to share it with one another."

Both Deahr and Hanson feel that the principles of experimental theatre bring uniqueness, creativity and poignancy to their work. They draw on these principles to keep their material fresh and to bring new ideas and awareness to audiences.

For Deahr, experimental theatre is about going beyond the conventional and embracing variety within dance.

"Compared to the typical contemporary dance company, Crash definitely puts a lot of work and effort into being unique, eclectic and cutting edge," said Deahr. "We always want to push the boundaries of what the audience expects to see from us within the dance disciplines we cover."

To Hanson, experimental theatre within the dance discipline is about developing new forms of expression.

"One of the things that has always interested me is movement invention," said Hanson. "To not work out of vocabulary that is traditional or familiar or conventional. I just like to disrupt the lines of the body, strip away some identifiable things."

Don't miss the opportunity to see Deahr's and Hanson's creative visions and innovative choreography at Xfest 2013. To purchase tickets, see performer bios, and read more about the Xfest performances please visit the Xfest website.

For more information about Chicago Dance Crash's and The Seldoms' dancers, past works and upcoming works, please visit and

SIUE Professor Making Documentary about Famous Opera Singer

24 April 2013, 4:38 pm

Dr. David J. Ragland, who teaches in the Learning, Culture and Society Program at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, will present his documentary Friday, April 26 about his uncle, the world-renowned opera singer Eugene B. Holmes. Ragland will present his work in progress, Deep River: A Journey to Holmes, from 5-6 p.m. at the Club EXO, 3146 Locust St. in St. Louis.

The event at Club EXO will feature operatic performances by Jermaine Smith, known for his role as 'Sportin Life,' from the Gershwin Opera in Porgy and Bess and recording artist Lydia Caesar, whose rhythm and blues music video, "St. Louis," recently aired on B.E.T.'s 106 & Park.

Holmes, who lived from 1932-2007, was one of the most prominent African-American operatic baritones. He achieved some acclaim in the U.S. during the early 1960s when he appeared on the Charlie Mack Show and then on the Mike Douglas Show in 1971.

Holmes was one of the trailblazing African-American classical performers, having performed at the New York Metropolitan Opera and many other opera houses around the world. In his early years, Holmes attended Washington Technical High School, Harris Stowe College and Saint Louis University. Later, he served in the Navy aboard the U.S.S. Conflict. During his military service, Holmes sang with the Navy Blue Jackets and had the opportunity to perform at the White House before President Lyndon B. Johnson and the First Lady.

Holmes was first discovered by Dorothy Zeigler, former artistic director for the St. Louis Opera Guild. Zeigler introduced Holmes to the Russian born Boris Goldovsky, a well-known classical pianist and vocal trainer who ran a prestigious opera workshop in Wheeling, W. Va.

After the clinic, Holmes was offered a scholarship and attended the University of Indiana in Bloomington for classical voice training. Afterward, he began performing with the Metropolitan Opera National Touring Company.

In 1966, after a year on tour with the Metropolitan Opera National Company, Holmes made his debut in the New York Metropolitan Opera. Later, Holmes made history as the first African American man to sing in the Jackson Mississippi Opera, during the height of segregation.

At one point, the praise and critical acclaim for Holmes reached such a height that he was considered "The foremost Negro Baritone of our time." Composer Gian Carlo Menotti created a role of Ukamba in his opera, The Most Important Man, written specifically for Holmes, which he performed in the 1971 premier at the New York City Opera.

In 1973, Holmes performed in the opera, Aida with famous tenor Placido Domingo. In total, Holmes played in an impressive repertoire of more than 75 different operas, including The Marriage of Figaro, La Traviata, Nabucco, The Mask, Bolero and Madame Butterfly.

Later, Holmes left the U.S. for a permanent contract with the Deutsche Opera am Rheine in Dusseldorf, Germany. He became well known in Germany for his singing and humanistic activities with UNICEF. Holmes died in 2007 with many friends, colleagues and admirers.

Now this intriguing story is finally being uncovered and documented for the American audience. Ragland, along with his cousin Wayne Adams, a New York City audio engineer, have traveled to Germany for filming. The pair has filmed many people, including Holmes' widow, Katja Holmes, and Holmes' colleagues at the Dusseldorf Opera.

For more information about the documentary, please visit

SIU President Poshard Addresses Budget and Pension Questions

24 April 2013, 4:33 pm

Video - Town Hall Meeting

Southern Illinois University President Glenn Poshard met with a nearly packed house in the SIU Edwardsville Meridian Ballroom on Wednesday to talk about the Edwardsville campus budget, the state pension plan and whether or not proposed tuition and fee changes for fiscal year 2014 will be approved next month.

For more than 2 hours, Poshard talked about the state's budget woes and the uncertainty of the State University Retirement System's future pension allocations.

to Poshard, the top issues facing higher education in the state of Illinois, and SIUE, are:

  • Declining student population
  • Higher tuition and fees for students and families
  • Cash flow situation
  • The state's negative credit rating and need for pension reform
  • An increased level of scrutiny by the state and federal government
  • And greater competition for university housing.

"We not only have declining state appropriations over the last few years," Poshard said. "We also have a cash flow problem. The state hasn't paid the University on time. It is still owed 74 percent of state appropriations that have been delayed or promised. The amount is so severe that we need to figure out a contingency."

A modest increase to tuition and fees would provide some of the relief the University needs to meet its budgetary obligations, Poshard said. He noted that while the campus has asked for more, a 3.4-percent increase in tuition and fees alone would benefit the University substantially, while keeping the University's tuition and fees at the lowest rate in the state for 4-year universities.

While state appropriations have been declining steadily during the past decade, SIUE's consistent, strong enrollment growth has been a great asset, Poshard said. But during a time when 4-year universities across the board are seeing a decline in enrollment, SIUE must step up its efforts to attract and grow its enrollment base, he said.

"Our enrollment growth is no longer assured," he said. "We need to provide additional scholarships and financial aid funding to enhance enrollment."

Poshard addressed one employee's question concerning rumors that all units within the institution are required to make a 25 percent reduction to their budgets over the next three years. He talked to the group about a plan introduced a few months ago by the governor's budget office that called for such reductions, noting this would be a "worst-case scenario." He added that as the University moves into the next three fiscal years, it faces some distinct challenges that it must meet head on.

"There may come a point when we have to consider layoffs. I'm not going to pull any punches here," he said. "Some things will suffer here eventually. All universities are facing the same challenges. We are trying to offset these budgetary issues to keep from facing these realities. We will take all measures possible to ensure the quality of education offered here doesn't suffer."

With regard to the state's current pension issues, Poshard touted a 6-point plan that has been supported by all presidents and chancellors of Illinois state universities. The proposal, published by the Institute of Government and Public Affairs (IGPA) of the University of Illinois calls for:

  • Changing the annual cost of living adjustment to link it to the consumer price index
  • Eliminating what the report called a "hidden subsidy," which would adjust the value of the effective rate of interest
  • Gradually shifting some of the pension contribution responsibility from the state to the colleges and universities
  • Increasing employee contributions to the pension plan by an additional 2 percent
  • Requiring the state to amortize the current SURS unfunded liability
  • Providing a new "hybrid" defined-benefit/defined-contribution plan for new employees.

Poshard noted that any measure that might pass concerning pension reform would not likely take effect before fiscal year 2015.

Aldemaro Romero Directs Flash Mob at SIUE

24 April 2013, 10:28 am

In a "flash" at noon sharp on Tuesday, an orchestra, dancers and choir transformed the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Morris University Center's Goshen Lounge into a musical and rhythmic delight.

"It was magical," said Papa Blankson, a freshman majoring in medical sciences.

More than 120 students, faculty and staff joined in an SIUE flash mob, which was the kickoff display for the second annual "Get Your Art on Art-ahhh-thon," sponsored by the College of Arts and Sciences. Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 Fourth Movement provided the backdrop for the flash dance, which lasted a little more than four minutes, and unfolded before a captivated audience of hundreds of onlookers.

"I wanted to do something like this ever since (SIUE) Music Chair Audrey Tallant sent me a video of a flash mob in Europe," said SIUE College of Arts and Sciences Dean Aldemaro Romero, who directed the flash mob. "I liked the idea, but I wanted to do something bigger, with a large orchestra and the Theater and Dance Department."

Tuesday's flash mob had an orchestra of about 40 people and included a whole set of string and horn instruments. Michael Mishra, SIUE professor of music, trained the orchestra. Joel Knapp, SIUE professor of music, worked with the choir, who sang Beethoven's piece in the original German. Kristin Best-Kinscherff, instructor in Theater and Dance, choreographed the flash mob and worked with the dancers.

"It was genius. I loved every part of it," said Matt Kelly, a freshman majoring in business.

Weeks of rehearsals went into the presentation of the flash mob, Romero said.

"It was pretty awesome," said Tyler Wilson, a senior majoring in political science and psychology. "It could have been longer because I was left with wanting more!"

Tuesday's Art-ahhh-thon had a daylong list of activities which included a ceramics exhibition, poetry reading, jewelry demonstrations and a wind symphony concert.

"The purpose was to bring art to the public in all of its forms," Romero said.

Photo Information:

SIUE College of Arts and Sciences Dean Aldemaro Romero directs part of the string orchestra during the SIUE flash mob.

Students from the SIUE Department of Theater and Dance perform during the SIUE flash mob.

Pictured are some violinists who were part of the flash mob orchestra.

SIUE College of Arts and Sciences Dean Aldemaro Romero directs the SIUE flash mob during a rehearsal.

SIUE Meridian Society Honors Members at Second Derby Day Event

23 April 2013, 6:04 pm

A sea of 130 colorful hats swirled throughout the Top of the Turf clubhouse Tuesday as members of the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Meridian Society and their guests celebrated Kentucky Derby style at Fairmount Park Race Track in Collinsville.

"These women of all ages come together for the collective good, and that makes a difference for children and families," said Dr. Venessa Brown, assistant provost for Institutional Diversity and Inclusion and professor of Social Work. "This is what happens when a diverse group of women come together. It certainly made an impression on me, and the array of hats made this so much fun!"

The Meridian Society recently awarded nearly $25,000 in funding to community oriented projects ranging from sustainability to music programs. The Society also brings international speakers to the area to promote diversity initiatives affecting area families. The projects were backed by University entities, such as the Schools of Dental Medicine, Education, Engineering and Pharmacy, the College of Arts and Sciences and The Gardens at SIUE.

"I was impressed to learn that 100 percent of what is given by the women in this organization is returned to the community through its projects," said SIUE alumna Donna Wilkerson, '78, who lives in Glen Carbon. "It seems to be a very worthwhile organization."

The organization was founded in 2003 under the leadership of a few women who were devoted to SIUE and inspired by Harold Melser, who has since retired from the SIUE Foundation.

"He gave me the idea for this and I said, 'Let's do it. It sounds like fun,'" said Kay Werner, first lady emeritus, one of the founding Meridian Society members and wife of Chancellor Emeritus David Werner. "It just made sense. The turnout today is wonderful. Even if the people who attended today don't join, it's so nice that they are now aware of what we're doing.

"I didn't envision this event being this big. Being aware of an organization like this-it's good for the organization, and it's good for the group."

"The Meridian Society is a wonderful group of women who are completely dedicated to both the University and the community," said Patrick Hundley, SIUE's vice chancellor for University Relations. "They demonstrate philanthropy throughout the greater community."

The "Best Hat" award for the day went to graduate school alumna Gloria Parker, '76, of Alton. It was a vintage hat worn by her late mother. The hat was black and white, sitting perfectly to the right side of her head with swirls of black and white beading reaching high on the left.

"My mother would never show up to church without a hat," said Parker, whose mother died in 2009. "I used to tell her she was just jazzy. She's with me every day; especially when I put this hat on today."

Parker said she received invitations to two other Meridian Society events in the mail recently. The invitation to today's derby made her decide to find out what it was all about. She brought four friends with her.

"I'm so pleased with this incredible turn out," said Elizabeth Keserauskis, Meridian Society president and SIUE's assistant vice chancellor for University Relations. "This event is such a wonderful way to cultivate relationships among women. The collective giving power of women is clear - since its inception in 2003, the Meridian Society has given 84 awards totaling over $207,000. We are making a difference in our community."

"Biggest Hat" award went to Sharon Schlaefer who was the guest of Meridian Society member and SIUE Police Chief Gina Hays. The original creation was a sun hat with tufts of light purple encircling it coming to a tail at the end. She made it for a church derby day and decided it was the perfect accessory for the Meridian Society function.

"Our mom was a very inspirational person in terms of having us perform skits and wear costumes and hats," Schlaefer said.

"This event was extremely successful," said Julie Babington, SIUE Foundation director of annual giving. "We were able to secure some donations and even a few new members. We were delighted to see participants all decked out in Derby style."

Kay Werner and Mary Sumner show off their hats at the annual SIUE Foundation Meridian Derby at Fairmount Park Race Track.

NAACP Official Brings Message of Diversity and Sustainability to SIUE

23 April 2013, 4:59 pm

Climate change is directly connected to human and civil rights, said Jacqui Patterson, director of the Climate Justice Initiative for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Patterson toured the campuses of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and the SIUE East St. Louis Center on Monday. Her visit was part of SIUE's Earth Week activities.

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe touted some of SIUE's strides and advances in the area of sustainability and introduced Patterson as the guest speaker at the Diversity and Sustainability presentation on the Quad.

"Sustainability is inherent in SIUE's Values," Furst-Bowe said, "which include environmental stewardship and social and civic responsibility. The University has been involved in activities that enhance sustainability for quite a while, even before the term 'sustainability' became popular. So, we are a trend setter."

But communities like East St. Louis need to be part of the discussion of diversity and sustainability, Furst-Bowe continued. "East St. Louis has a longer path to go than many other communities," said the SIUE chancellor, "but it also has resources that are unique to the area and could be utilized in ways that lift the community to greater levels of achievement."

Patterson began her presentation by showing the inequities that exist for low-income people and African-American and Latino communities as it relates to climate change. It is these neighborhoods, Patterson said, who are disproportionately negatively impacted, and for whom the NAACP is working hard to help.

"We are doing this work for Latino and African American children from the Bronx to Biloxi who are already in food deserts," Patterson intoned, "and will only suffer from less access to affordable nutritious foods as climate change drives shifts in agricultural yields.

"So in a land of abundance, we have whole communities whose rights to clean air and water, uncontaminated land and nutritious foods to eat are being violated on a daily basis."

The NAACP director went on to point out some energy production processes that have devastating effects for some people. There are 378 coal fired power plants in crowded areas across the U.S., Patterson noted.

"These plants that are spewing mercury, arsenic, lead, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxide, as well as carbon dioxide," she said, "are primarily in communities of color and low-income communities.

"With African-American families more likely to live next to a coal fired power plant, we have African American adults more likely to die from lung disease but less likely to smoke. We have African American children who are three times more likely to be admitted to the hospital for asthma attacks and twice as likely to die from asthma."

But there are things that can be done, Patterson told her audience. The public can hold the government responsible for the commitments it has made such as advancing a clean energy standard of 80 percent of renewable energy by 2050 and developing a climate action plan by the end of 2013.

Some action items Patterson enumerated for those wanting to help in the quest for equality as it relates to the climate change:

• Education

• Make your voices heard at forums like the Environmental Protection Agency hearings on regulating air pollution

• Make sure community-based research is being prioritized so that those communities adversely affected can contribute to and help drive research and study

• Incorporate youth voices and leadership in such efforts

"There is an African proverb that says: 'When spiders unite, we can tie up a lion!' If we come together," Patterson said, "we can advance living in harmony with Mother Earth as well as each other."

Photo Information:

Jacqui Patterson, director of the Climate Justice Initiative for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), spoke Monday at a Diversity and Sustainability presentation at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

SIUE Police Teach Females To Defend Themselves

23 April 2013, 10:12 am

"Stay back!" "No!" "Stop!" These three commands rung out loud and clear from the lips of about 50 females participating in Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Police Department's class of Basic Physical Defense for Women on Saturday in East St. Louis.

It was the first time that the University's police department offered the Rape Aggression Defense (R.A.D.) systems of self-defense at the SIUE East St. Louis Center. Three female certified R.A.D. instructors from the SIUE Police Department led the class: Sgt. Lisa Johnson and police officers Tara Vaughan and Trisha Bland. Five male University police officers served as "offenders" on whom the females practiced their defense moves: Adam Severit, Dave Baybordi, Brad Hershberger, Tim Andrews and Anthony Jones.

"Life is valuable," said Elke Harris-McIntosh, program director for the Upward Bound Math & Science program at the SIUE East St. Louis Center. "And being able to defend yourself makes it even more valuable." Harris-McIntosh also had her daughter and niece in the class.

"I've never taken a self-defense class," said Andrea Smythe, former dance instructor for the now defunct SIUE East St. Louis Center for the Performing Arts. "I have a daughter and a niece. I can show them these techniques. Besides, things in the world seem to be crazier now."

Participants listened to some basic facts about women and physical violence and R.A.D. "One out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime," Johnson said. "Approximately two-thirds of sexual assaults are completed by someone known to the victim."

The goal of R.A.D. training is self-defense in response to an attempted abduction. "Once a person has been abducted," Johnson said, "their chance of survival is cut in half. The goal of the training is not to be abducted.

"Run if you can and always yell. Do not scream. People will better respond to yells for help."

For about six hours, participants yelled and practiced self-defense moves over and over. The moves, they were told, were not to be shared with any man.

"No men, except these police officers, were allowed in class for a good reason," Johnson said. "Not all men are bad, we know that. But there are some people who would take advantage of it and use it against a woman."

Wendy Klein, coordinator for the Division of Rehabilitation for Illinois, said she took the class and brought her 12-year-old daughter Kiersten. Klein hopes the class will help prepare them to become defensive.

SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School student, Leon'Sha Star, also wants to defend herself. "If ever someone should try to abduct me, I would need to know how to get away," said the high school senior. "Or if I'm in a situation with a guy that I don't like, and I want to get out of it, this will be helpful."

Gaile Allen, an East St. Louis resident, said she enjoyed the class because it helped her feel more empowered.

"We've had students who have been the victims of sexual assault attend the class," said Johnson. "As a result of the class, they have said that they felt as if they got back some of their power."

The SIUE Police Department offers the free R.A.D. training in the spring and fall. "I knew everyone on this campus wasn't able to travel to Edwardsville," Vaughan said, whose eight-year-old daughter Addie was also a class participant. "The more people we can reach with this training, the better."

"Everything that I've learned today, I believe I'll be able to use it," said Jamila Ajanaku, staff assistant with the Charter High School. "Taking this class has made me more aware. You should always have a plan."

Precious Patterson said she doesn't like to fight, but the teenager said the class taught her how to protect herself if ever she should find herself in harm's way. Patterson is a student in the Upward Bound EC Program at the SIUE East St. Louis Center. "I feel a little more confident," she said.

Photo Information:

SIUE Police Officer Tara Vaughan shows Leon'Sha Star, SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School student, how to best execute a particular self-defense move against University Police Officer Tim Andrews.

SIUE Police Officer Trisha Bland coaches eight-year-old Addie Vaughan how to begin a self-defense move. University Police Officer Anthony Jones steadies a body cushion.

The goal of the Rape Aggression Defense (R.A.D.) systems of self-defense is to fend off any possible abduction. In the foreground are Rene Smith of the SIUE East St. Louis Center, on the left, and Andrea Smythe of Belleville, on the right.

Andrea Smythe of Belleville assumes a defensive position against SIUE Police Officer Anthony Jones. University Police Officer Tara Vaughan coaches from the sidelines.

SIUE to Host Annual Kimmel Leadership Awards Ceremony

23 April 2013, 9:52 am

The winner of this year's Kimmel Scholarship and other award recipients will be honored Wednesday. The Kimmel awards annually honor the late Carol Kimmel, a tireless volunteer and ardent Southern Illinois University Edwardsville supporter who dedicated her life to education.

The Kimmel Leadership Awards Ceremony will take place at 4:30 p.m. in the SIUE Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom. This year's award recipients include:

• Kimmel Scholarship Awardee Renee Dow Tate, an SIUE graduate students from Pontoon Beach majoring in art therapy counseling

• Faculty/Staff Award Recipient Lakesha M. Butler, clinical associate professor in the SIUE School of Pharmacy

• Special Populations Award Recipient Mary Anne Hopper of Waterloo

• Social Service/Social Welfare Award Recipient Timothy Stark of Collinsville.

The scholarship recipient is chosen based on certain specific criteria, including having a minimum cumulative 3.0 GPA, having a demonstrated commitment to leadership, service and/or citizenship, serving in a leadership role within a student organization, and having letters of support. Tate has a 4.0 GPA and an extensive student organization and community service record. The scholarship will cover Tate's tuition for full-time study at SIUE for an academic year at the Illinois in-state rate.

Tate, who chose to work with Rebirth East St. Louis instead of taking a graduate assistantship, said, "I believe wholeheartedly in the importance of building genuine relationships. I want to serve, mentor and inspire hope through my life."

In addition to her involvement with Rebirth East St. Louis, Tate has been a member of the Student Art Therapy Association in numerous roles, as well as worked closely with area youth through the Christian Activity Center in East St. Louis, the Inter Varsity Fall Conference in Carlinville, the Inter Varsity Urbana Missions Conference 2013 in St. Louis, and serving as an SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School Winter Ball Chaperone.

"Renee is a student who demonstrates critical thinking and strong empathy toward others," said Megan Robb, assistant professor in art therapy counseling at SIUE. "Having these skills as a student training to be a therapist is critical, but not often observed so readily among her peers."

Awardees for the other categories were selected based on their community service philosophies, degree of volunteer participation, and service and volunteer impact. Butler was nominated for her work with Ark of Safety Christian Church in St. Charles, Mo., Christian Women Walking in Victory and Girls Empowered in Math and Science (GEMS.)

"Dr. Butler is a firm advocate for both increasing diversity in the profession of pharmacy and improving access for minorities to healthcare professionals," said nominator Gold Uche, a student pharmacist who is the SIUE chapter president of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association.

Uche explained how Butler's role in organizing the School of Pharmacy's annual Diversity Summer Camp Program has made a positive difference in the lives of area students, adding, "Dr. Butler voluntarily gives her time to this endeavor, because she passionately believes that a program such as this will help increase minority personnel in the profession of pharmacy."

Hopper was described by nominator Kimberly Williams Lee with the Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois as "an outstanding leader, cookie manager, troop organizer consultant, camp director and service unit director." Lee further explained "Mary Anne's whole life is committed to service for others." In addition to her work with the Girl Scouts, Hopper volunteers with the Boy Scouts, the St. Louis Baseball Team and on many boards in the Waterloo and Valmeyer area.

The Social Service/Social Welfare recipient, Stark, has a philosophy to "help youth make better decisions more often." He said his goals are to "maintain current relationships with the courts, families and agencies; expand the juvenile diversion programs into more communities and foster more relationships with youth serving agencies."

He is involved with multiple agencies, including as the founding director of the Madison County Juvenile Diversion, and as a member of the Latino Roundtable, the Boy Scouts of America and Pride Inc.

Referencing the message from the late Mahatma Ghandi, "you must be the change you want to see in the world," stated Scott Elliff, program coordinator with the Madison County Probation and Court Services Department in his nomination of Stark. He added that "Stark embodies the very essence of this axiom through the generous and altruistic offering of his time, efforts and enthusiasm, with the humble notion to encourage just one person in the community to make a better choice in life."

Belleville East High School Wins 2013 Botball Tournament at SIUE

22 April 2013, 1:29 pm

Belleville East High School won the seventh annual Greater St. Louis Botball Tournament on Saturday, April 20, at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. A record 36 teams competed before a steady crowd of more than 400 throughout the day in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

In Botball, the overall winner is determined as a sum of a team's score in seeding rounds, the double-elimination tournament and in documentation developed before the competition and presented at the competition. Each of these categories is equally weighted when determining overall score.

In the seeding rounds, Belleville East High School, Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois, Pana Junior High School and The Daniela Rus Team from Wabash Valley took first through fourth place, respectively. Belleville East had the highest scoring seeding round with 186 points.

Five teams had perfect documentation scores: Alton Middle School, Belleville East, Edwardsville High School, The Daniela Rus Team from Wabash Valley and The Maja Mataric Team from Wabash Valley.

The double-elimination tournament found Pana Junior High School, Edwardsville, Bond County Community #2 and Belleville East finishing first through fourth place, respectively. PJHS topped defending overall champion Edwardsville in the final of the double-elimination event.

Bond Community reached the final four and topped Belleville East before falling to Edwardsville. PJHS, a first-time Botball team, then walked away undefeated in the double-elimination tournament with its victory over EHS.

Overall point scoring put Belleville East in first place with 2.88 points out of 3.0. The Girl Scouts moved up a notch this year to take second overall with a total 2.72 points. Scoring 2.66 out of 3.0, Pana Junior High School took third. Fourth place went to Edwardsville with a score of 2.60. Complete details on the scores can be found at

Gary Mayer, Ph.D., an assistant professor of computer science in the SIUE School of Engineering, is one of the event organizers. "We had a great tournament this year, and the judges were especially pleased to see the assortment of technical skills and ideas brought by all of the teams," Mayer said.

Mayer noted that one of highlights of the tournament was Pana Junior High School's win over Edwardsville High School. "It was quite a thrill to see a junior high team, brand new to Botball, do so well by winning the double-elimination," Mayer said. "People frequently are surprised to learn that the kids as young as 6th grade compete head-to-head against high school teams. I always tell them that they can hold their own, and this demonstrates just that.

"Another team of note is the Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois. This was their second year, and they placed in the top three overall both times. The fact that the tournament isn't locked up by veteran teams is just great. It shows that all of the teams have a real chance when they get in there and apply themselves."

Mayer also finds the parents to be entertaining, too. "At the Botball tournament, no adults are allowed in the pit area," he said. "It's student team members only. That's the great thing about Botball-it's student-focused. The mentors did their part in the preceding weeks and now it's time for the kids to shine, and they do great! The students are all heads-down, focused on modifying their robots' hardware and software in getting ready for the next round. But the parents…we had to set up extra rope and post guards to keep them out of the Pit."

The theme of this year's tournament was the Mars Sample Return (MSR) Mission. The students built autonomous robots that traveled around a game board with four goals:

  • Retrieve samples cached by the Mars Science Laboratory, Curiosity
  • Gather, sort, and separate unusual and interesting samples detected from orbit
  • Load the samples into return containers
  • Assemble the return vehicle (rocket) and prep it for launch

The SIUE School of Engineeringoffers one of the most comprehensive and affordable engineering programs in the St. Louis region with eight undergraduate degrees, five master's degrees and a cooperative doctoral program, all housed in a state-of-the-art facility. Students learn from expert faculty, perform cutting-edge research, and participate in intercollegiate design competitions. Companies in the metropolitan St. Louis area provide students challenging internships and co-op opportunities which often turn into permanent employment. All undergraduate programs are accredited by their respective accreditation agencies.

SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School team members (left to right) Daje Na Lockett, Dameon Denzmore and Quewon Smith work on their robot at the seventh annual Greater St. Louis Botball Tournament at SIUE.

SIUE's Student Marketing Organization Receives Several Awards

22 April 2013, 10:54 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's School of Business announced the American Marketing Association (AMA) student chapter as the recipient of the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Student Organization of the Year Award.

Given out at the end of each academic year, the award goes to the student organization that puts forth the most effort to support their organization's mission. This is evaluated through the group's activities, how its members serve the organization and how its stakeholders.

Senior marketing major and AMA President Matt Gamez is proud of the organization's achievements. "We've managed to grow through the efforts put forth from our members," he said. "Membership has increased by 38 percent, and our ending budget was three times the goal we had set."

According to Gamez, the organization increased its budget through extensive fundraising. AMA annually designs and distributes a holiday card that is sent to every faculty and staff member at SIUE in mid-December. Donations are solicited from School of Business faculty and include the names of each donor on the card.

"In addition to our holiday card, we also hosted our annual trivia night," said Gamez. "It was a tremendously successful fundraising event, and I am confident the group will achieve similar results next year."

Not only has AMA accomplished growth as an organization, but they also developed the inaugural "School of Business Fest." Held in September, the festival is designed to promote student business organizations to build membership and awareness across campus.

According to Enterprise Talent Acquisition Manager Steve Talbott, those efforts earned the award for AMA. "AMA distinguished itself through consistent results," he said. "Fantastic leadership, coupled with a motivated membership, set a great example for other organizations to follow."

The AMA chapter first received validation of its efforts while attending the 35 th Annual International Collegiate Conference (ICC) in March. The ICC is designed to give chapters techniques on improving while providing valuable insight from marketing professionals. The conference also acknowledges AMA chapters for performance.

SIUE's AMA chapter earned three awards:

  • Exemplary Collegiate Chapter Performance for Outstanding Membership
  • Exemplary Collegiate Chapter Performance for Outstanding Fundraising
  • 3 rd Place in the AMA Exhibit Competition for Best Use of Conference Theme

Enterprise, a key supporter of the School of Business, has been sponsoring the Student Organization Leader of the Semester and the Student Organization of the Year Awards since 2006.

The SIUE School of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International, representing the highest standard of achievement for business schools worldwide. The Princeton Review lists SIUE as one of the top 296 business schools in the U.S. and abroad for the seventh consecutive year. Undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered in accounting, computer management and information systems, economics, finance, management and marketing. More than 23,000 alumni have earned degrees from the SIUE School of Business. For more information about the School of Business, visit:

SIUE's American Marketing Association chapter received the Enterprise Student Organization of the Year Award. Pictured (from left to right): SIUE School of Business Dean Gary Giamartino, Assoc. Professor and Chair of the Management and Marketing Dept. Edmund Hershberger, Cassaundra Smith, Adam Richter, Julianne Coonley, Elizabeth Huffman, Matt Gamez, Tauras Ketchens and Enterprise Talent Acquisition Manager Steve Talbott.

Furst-Bowe Installed as 8th SIUE Chancellor

19 April 2013, 4:04 pm

Video from today's installation of SIUE's 8th Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville installed its 8th Chancellor Friday, Dr. Julie Furst-Bowe. Pictured are Chancellor Furst-Bowe, left, and SIU President Glenn Poshard. Poshard is placing the "Chancellor's Chain" around Furst-Bowe's neck. The medallion lists her name, as well as the names of all past presidents and chancellors of SIUE.

The culmination to a week of activities at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville highlighting global awareness, diversity, inclusion and faculty research, and capturing the essence of all the institution's programs and schools, saw the installation of the University's 8 th leader, Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe on Friday.

The theme for the week leading up to the ceremony was "Planning for Our Global Future." Before a n enthusiastic crowd of more than 600 people in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom, Furst-Bowe talked about the importance of shaping global citizens as one of SIUE's core values. She also spoke about expanding the campus international travel programs and bringing more students from other countries to study at SIUE.

Faculty and staff members donned regalia, marched in a procession, with Furst-Bowe and SIU President Glenn Poshard. Other attendees included students, area leaders and dignitaries. Attendees from Furst-Bowe's prior institutions, the University of Wisconsin-Stout and UW-Eau Clair, as well as personal friends, mentors and family members joined in the celebration.

Edwardsville Mayor Gary Niebur spoke fondly of his nearly 20-year relationship with the University as the city's mayor, saying, "I could not be prouder that Edwardsville is home to this premier institution."

He talked about his personal history with the institution, having three daughters graduate through the SIU system and a son on the way to SIU Carbondale this fall. "I'm proud-and relieved-to report that all three have great jobs in their chosen professions and bright futures ahead of them."

SIUE Interim Provost Ann Boyle, who acted as the ceremony's emcee, introduced Poshard to the crowd, saying, "He is a tireless advocate for our University at the local, state and national levels."

When Poshard approached the podium, he presented Furst-Bowe with "the Chancellors Chain," which is a medallion listing her name, as well as the names of past presidents and chancellors. He explained the chain is a symbolic reminder of the institution's accomplishments as well as the challenges to come.

"As president of SIU, I welcome you as a partner in this great adventure. We recognize your personal and professional commitment. I hope that this chain will guide, enlighten and inspire you for years to come," Poshard said and placed the medallion around Furst-Bowe's neck.

"It is a great honor to be installed as the 8 th Chancellor of SIUE," Furst-Bowe said, noting that there are numerous challenges ahead. She cited the state's various financial challenges. She noted the institution's state commitment has fallen from 46 percent of its overall budget to 22 percent during the last decade.

In the face of these fiscal challenges, Furst-Bowe talked about the need to expand online course offerings and programs to meet the needs of traditional students and working adults. She noted, "We are the most affordable (4-year university) in the state. We've been forced to increase tuition.

"The entire country is becoming concerned about the increase in college student loan debt," Furst-Bowe said. "Facing these challenges will require faculty, staff, students and administrators to work together with high levels of communication, trust and teamwork.

"We must continue to advance university priorities, yet at the same time examine ways to reduce costs," she said. "We must also continue to enhance our revenue streams through increased enrollments, expanded fundraising-particularly in the area of scholarships for students, and increased grants and contract activity."

Furst-Bowe reported the University already has increased its research funding during the first six months of Fiscal Year 2013 with more than $5 million raised.

"This number represents a significant increase over the first six months of Fiscal Year 2012," she said. "Of course, numbers only tell part of a story. But they do speak volumes about the ability of our faculty and staff in our academic departments, our library and our research centers to develop successful proposals that further the goals of the campus."

The presidents of the Faculty and Staff senates, Rhonda Comrie, associate professor of primary care and health systems nursing, and Keith Becherer, assistant director of campus recreation, respectively, warmly welcomed the new chancellor.

Student Body President Erik Zimmerman recalled a recent trip with student leaders to Lobby Day in Springfield. "I was immediately impressed with how involved she is with students and committed to student engagement," he said. "During Lobby Day, she was right there alongside the students expressing our institution's values of openness, diversity and inclusion.

Furst-Bowe quoted Nobel Peace Prize winner and former South African President Nelson Mandela, saying, "Education is the great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor; that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine; and that a child of farmworkers can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another."

The SIUE Steel Drum Band and the SIUE Choir performed as part of the celebration, which ended with a light reception in the Goshen Lounge.

Furst-Bowe, who was introduced as the 8 th Chancellor of the University by Poshard on April 26, 2012, succeeded Dr. Vaughn Vandegrift who retired after a successful, eight-year tenure.

Video from each of the activities that happened on campus as part of installation week is available on the chancellor's installation website.

Thursday's Chancellor's Installation Week Highlights

19 April 2013, 7:57 am

Chancellor's Installation Week at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville continued Thursday with a variety of activities that included an emeriti faculty coffee with Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe, the School of Pharmacy pinning ceremony and a student panel on foreign policy. View the highlights.

Furst-Bowe will be officially installed during a ceremony today in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom. She became SIUE's eighth chancellor on July 2, 2012.

The theme for the week leading up to the ceremony is "Planning for Our Global Future."

A schedule of events and additional details are available on the chancellor's installation website.

Alum Gregg McGee Featured in

18 April 2013, 10:32 am

Gregg McGee earned a bachelor's in mass communications and radio-TV at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in 1972. A Granite City native, McGee recently celebrated 40 years of employment with the Six Mile Regional Library District. Suburban Journals writer Jim Merkel featured McGee in a piece for

Boudeman Receives Enterprise Rent-A-Car Student Organization Leader of the Semester Award

18 April 2013, 9:25 am

The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Business tapped James Boudeman as the recipient of the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Student Organization Leader of the Semester Award.

Boudeman received the award at the annual School of Business Scholarship Banquet on April 11 in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

The Armington native is a senior computer management and information systems (CMIS) major. The award goes to student leaders who participate in events, show a willingness to take on responsibility, promote innovative ideas and effectively involve others in the organization.

Boudeman is vice president of the Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP), and was nominated by the AITP faculty adviser Andrea Hester, Ph.D., CMIS assistant professor in the SIUE School of Business. Hester nominated Boudeman because of his dedication and enthusiasm.

"James is dedicated to helping AITP succeed as a student organization," said Hester. "He also is dedicated to his fellow classmates by encouraging them to participate in AITP and take advantage of all of the opportunities offered by AITP and the other organizations throughout SIUE."

Boudeman is honored to be recognized. "Receiving the award is a compliment to the work that all of the officers and members alike have put into AITP this past year," he said.

"James consistently demonstrated passion, drive and leadership in his effort to advance AITP," said Enterprise Talent Acquisition Manager Steve Talbott. "We are excited to have the opportunity to partner with SIUE and recognize such an outstanding leader."

Boudeman credits the School of Business and its faculty for his success as a student leader. "I thank the multitude of professors and instructors that have made a personal connection with me and continue to guide my education," he said. "My success as a student lies in the many great resources at my fingertips."

"When he graduates this August, I have no doubt that James will leave SIUE with an outstanding leadership skill set that, along with his excellent academic performance, will bring success in anything and everything he pursues," said Hester.

Enterprise, a key supporter of the School of Business, has sponsored the Student Organization Leader of the Semester and the Student Organization of the Year Awards since 2006.

The SIUE School of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International, representing the highest standard of achievement for business schools worldwide. The Princeton Review lists SIUE as one of the top 296 business schools in the U.S. and abroad for the seventh consecutive year. Undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered in accounting, computer management and information systems, economics, finance, management and marketing. More than 23,000 alumni have earned degrees from the SIUE School of Business. For more information about the School of Business, visit:

SIUE senior Computer Management and Information Systems (CMIS) major, James Boudeman (left), receives the Enterprise Student of the Semester Award from Enterprise Talent Acquisition Manager Steve Talbott.

SIUE Faculty, Staff Honored at Reception as Part of Installation Week

17 April 2013, 4:46 pm

Hundreds of members of the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville community turned out Wednesday for a Faculty/Staff Appreciation Reception in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

The event, which was hosted by the Chancellor's Council, was part of activities leading up to the installation of SIUE's eighth chancellor, Julie Furst-Bowe. The formal installation ceremony will take place from 10-11:30 a.m. Friday, also in the Meridian Ballroom.

"We certainly want to take this time to recognize the work you do," said Furst-Bowe at the beginning of the reception. "We recognize the work you do in the classroom and in supporting areas. We appreciate the care you provide on a daily basis. Thank you on behalf of me and the vice chancellors. We appreciate everything you do."

The event marked the second year for the recognition reception, which was started under Emeritus Chancellor Vaughn Vandegrift. Eddy the Cougar was on hand to greet guests, while a jazz combo provided by the SIUE Department of Music delighted the audience. Attendees enjoyed light refreshments provided through Catering Services. A slide show was shown featuring SIUE faculty and staff, flags representing the countries of origin of some employees, and students and scenes from the campus.

"It's really nice that they do take this time for us," said Linda Etling from Information Technology Services. Etling has been employed with the University for 30 years.

"I love where I am," said Josie Morris, a 14-year employee at the University who works in Accounting. "SIUE is a great place to work."

All employees, regardless of attendance, were entered into a drawing that was conducted following the reception. Faculty and staff members were notified of prizes they won after the event.

A complete schedule for the installation week is available on the chancellor's installation website.

Sanchez Exhibit Featured during Chancellor's Installation Week

17 April 2013, 3:47 pm

The artwork of Emilio Sanchez is on display at the Art and Design Building Gallery throughout the Chancellor's Installation Week at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Sanchez was a Cuban 20 th century artist. See the video.

SIUE's University Museum now houses the largest collection of artwork in the country by the late, internationally acclaimed artist. The donation of Cuban art from the Emilio Sanchez Foundation through the Cuban Caribbean Center in the College of Arts and Sciences is valued at $469,000.

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe will be officially installed during a ceremony Friday, April 19, at 10 a.m., in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

The theme for the week leading up to the ceremony is "Planning for Our Global Future."

A schedule of events and additional details are available on the chancellor's installation website.

SIUE International Students Discuss Experiences & Diversity Plan Unveiled

16 April 2013, 5:18 pm

Video from Tuesday's unveiling of the proposed SIUE Diversity Plan and an international student presentation.

From back row, far left, Dr. Venessa Brown, SIUE associate provost for institutional diversity and inclusion, Dora Opoku-Acheampong, a graduate student from Ghana, Mohamed Chakir, a Fulbright scholar from Morocco and Omotola Soyoye, a graduate student from Nigeria, Yangpeng Chang, a master's student from Taiwan and Syayad Sandi-Sukandi, a Fulbright scholar from Indonesia.

Nearly 75 faculty, staff members and students at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville attended presentations Tuesday by international students about the campus and its environment of inclusion, followed by the unveiling of the University's new diversity plan, which is set to be finalized in a few weeks.

Students from Ghana, Nigeria, Taiwan, Morocco and Indonesia expressed the connection they felt with SIUE and how seeing the United Nations flag flying on campus made them feel like they were part of a real community.

"It means to me that my country is represented at SIUE," said Omotola Soyoye, a graduate student from Nigeria.

"Whether we are from Europe, Asia or the Middle East, even though we have differences through cultural, geographic and political backgrounds, we are building on our relationships here," said Mohamed Chakir, a Fulbright scholar from Morocco.

Following the student portion of the event, Dr. Venessa Brown, SIUE associate provost for institutional diversity and inclusion, introduced members of the SIUE Diversity Council to present the University's proposed Diversity Plan. Brown is the chair of the University wide Council selected to draft a plan that focuses on establishing diversity goals. The Diversity Plan involves three main goals:

  • Institutional leadership calling for campus administration to provide leadership and support, as well as oversight for all diversity and inclusion initiatives;
  • A curricular and co-curricular transformation that incorporates diversity and inclusion into instructional materials, classroom discussions and student assignments, activities and university events;
  • A campus climate that is welcoming and inclusive for all faculty, staff, students and visitors, both in the classroom and in the work environment.

Dr. Robyn Berkley, associate professor of management and marketing through the SIUE School of Business and also a Council co-chair, talked about the importance of the committee's targeted goals in order to enhance the University's national position as a safe and accepting place on the national stage.

"Diversity must be a part of our academic, as well as our non-academic side," said Paul Pitts, assistant chancellor for institutional compliance and Council co-chair. "Are we as diverse and inclusive as we say we are? Are we really moving to be inclusive? These are important questions we need to ask ourselves."

Objectives of the plan include:

  • Creating a supportive environment that welcomes all individuals;
  • Collecting and organizing information that assesses progress and aligns/realigns programs intended to enhance diversity and inclusion;
  • Recruiting and retaining greater numbers of minorities into faculty, staff and administrative positions, including deans, chairs and vice chancellors;
  • Recruiting, retaining and graduating greater numbers of racial/ethnic minority and other underrepresented students;
  • Developing and implementing diversity and inclusion activities and programs designed to increase awareness of diversity and inclusion issues among students, faculty and staff at all levels;
  • Developing a Multicultural Center to provide diversity and inclusion activities designed to increase awareness at all levels;
  • Encourage academic and academic support units to develop models of excellence for increasing diversity and inclusion, and fostering a respect for inclusiveness;
  • Recognizing and celebrating diversity and inclusion efforts throughout the University Community.

"I'm excited about this Diversity Plan and our chance to present it to the faculty, staff and entire University community," Brown said. "Having the opportunity to collect the documentation that shows SIUE as a place of diversity and inclusion, as well as a place that offers a welcoming and hospitable environment for our international students is an honor."

Brown said she is hopeful the Diversity Plan to be finalized within the next few weeks.

SIUE Hosts Delegates from Shenyang Aerospace University

16 April 2013, 5:05 pm

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe met with delegates from Shenyang Aerospace University on Monday to discuss potential partnership agreements.

In an effort to enhance its global presence, members of the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville administrative team met with delegates from China's Shenyang Aerospace University on campus Monday. The event was organized by the SIUE School of Engineering.

"The School of Engineering is dedicated to developing partnerships with universities worldwide," said the School's Dean Hasan Sevim. "This visit provided us with an opportunity to explore collaborative programs in mechanical and electrical engineering."

Administrators from the SIUE schools of Business, Education and Engineering, and the SIUE Center for International Programs, SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe and delegates from Shenyang Aerospace University met Monday to discuss a potential academic outreach program.

Currently, the School of Engineering has a partnership with Istanbul Technical University in industrial engineering and is reaching out to other countries for additional partnership agreements.

Administrators from the SIUE schools of Business, Education and Engineering, as well as the SIUE Center for International Programs also took part in educating the delegates about SIUE and all the University has to offer.

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe accepts memorabilia from Shenyang Aerospace University President Wang Wei.

A Host of Activities Planned for Earth Week at SIUE

16 April 2013, 3:58 pm

A workshop on how to make deodorant and a seminar on how to grow edible herbs are a few activities planned for Earth Week 2013 at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville from Monday-Friday, April 22-26.

SIUE will host its annual Earth Week with various events scheduled throughout the week.

Times, locations and subject of the activities are as follows:

Monday, April 22

• 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Morris University Center Goshen Lounge, "Student Sustainability Day - Educate and Participate," informational tables to inform about opportunities and tools available at SIUE in the area of sustainability

• 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Goshen Lounge, T.J.'s Clothing Resale to raise funds for Uganda fish farms

• 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Quad, Kentucky Knife Fight band

• 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Goshen Lounge, Do-It-Yourself Workshop, "Making Glass Cleaner"

• 3 p.m., Quad (in case of rain Goshen Lounge), "Sustainability and Diversity in Education," Speakers: SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe, SIUE Assistant Chancellor for Institutional Compliance Paul Pitts, and NAACP Climate Justice Initiative Director Jacqueline Patterson

Tuesday, April 23

• 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Quad, "Transportation Day," displays of various alternatives to 100 percent carbon-based fuel powered vehicles

• 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Quad, Do-It-Yourself Workshop, "Making Your Own Laundry Soap"

Wednesday, April 24

• 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Quad, "Chalk the Quad!" Chalking stations will be set up for anyone to chalk their messages or artwork about sustainability

• 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Quad, Do-It-Yourself Workshop, "Making Your Own Multi-purpose Cleaner"

• Various times throughout the afternoon, Quad, "Theater Day," art, dance, theater, flash mobs, and more!

Thursday, April 25

• 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Quad, Kansas Street Ramblers band

• 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Quad, Do-It-Yourself Workshop, "Growing Your Own Herbs"

Friday, April 26

• 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Goshen Lounge, T.J.'s Clothing Resale to raise funds for Uganda fish farms

• 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Goshen Lounge, Do-It-Yourself Workshop, "Making Your Own Deodorant and Toothpaste"

• 4-7 p.m., Quad, "Spring of Sustainability Party," end of the semester party with free Capri Sun juice pouches and T-shirts, Aaron Kamm & the One Drops band

NAACP Official Will Encourage SIUE to Champion Environmental Justice

16 April 2013, 3:52 pm

A National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) official will tour Southern Illinois University Edwardsville to learn about its sustainable efforts, and to encourage the University on how to become advocates for environmental justice. Jacqueline Patterson, NAACP Climate Justice Initiative director, will visit campus April 22.

Patterson will tour and gather information while visiting the SIUE East St. Louis Center and the Edwardsville campus. The highlight of the day will be a Diversity & Sustainability presentation with SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe at 3 p.m. on the Quad (or Goshen Lounge in the case of inclement weather). Giving the introduction for the presentation will be SIUE Assistant Chancellor for Institutional Compliance Paul Pitts, who also is vice president of the Edwardsville Chapter of the NAACP.

"SIUE has accomplished much in the area of sustainability and diversity in higher education," said SIUE Sustainable Officer Kevin Adkins. "We are pleased to have Patterson visit and learn firsthand about SIUE's sustainability initiatives, and to motivate our campus and students to do even more."

The campus also will be able to discover what and how the NAACP is dealing with such issues as climate change. "Climate change has a disproportionate impact on communities of color in the United States and around the world," according to the NAACP's website. "The NAACP Climate Justice Initiative was created to educate and mobilize communities to address this human and civil rights issue."

Climate change is about "the fact that race-over class-is the number one indicator for the placement of toxic facilities in this country. Climate change is about the fact that in our communities it is far easier to find a bag of Cheetos than a carton of strawberries." For more information about global climate change, visit the NAACP Climate Justice Initiative at

Patterson has a bachelor's in special education from Boston University. She also has two master's degrees, one in public health from Johns Hopkins University and the other in social work from the University of Maryland.

Patterson's community activism includes working in the Boston shelter system and participating in the "Housing Now" movement. She was a volunteer for more than three years with the U.S. Peace Corps in Jamaica. The activist also worked with the Community Environmental Resource Center as a result of the contamination of the Harbour View community water supply by the neighboring Shell Oil Company plant.

Patterson's schedule of events while on campus follows:

• 8-11a.m., touring the SIUE East St. Louis Center and its outreach centers

• 11:45a.m.-12:15 p.m., touring the NCERC at SIUE (National Corn-to-Ethanol Research Center)

• 12:15-12:45 p.m., touring the Gardens at SIUE

• 1-2 p.m., lunch at the University Restaurant with faculty and staff

• 2-3 p.m., touring SIUE main campus

• 3 p.m., Diversity and Sustainability presentation

• 4-6 p.m., University Club Room, meet and greet with the community

• 7-10 p.m., dinner at the University Restaurant with 40 SIUE students, co-hosted by SIUE Black Studies Program and the Learning, Culture & Society Program.

For more information, visit

SIUE Hosts Record 36 Teams at 2013 Botball Tournament

16 April 2013, 8:49 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville hosts the seventh annual Greater St. Louis Botball Tournament on Saturday, April 20 in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom. A record 36 teams are registered for the competition that begins at 10 a.m.

Gary Mayer, Ph.D., an assistant professor of computer science in the SIUE School of Engineering, is one of the event organizers and is encouraged by the record participation.

"Botball puts the focus on the student as the students devise the solutions and implement them through the building of robots and programming robots' behaviors," Mayer said. "Getting young people engaged in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) activities such as the botball program is important because it helps develop critical thinking skills that can be applied to any career field."

The theme of this year's tournament is the Mars Sample Return (MSR) Mission. The students are building autonomous robots that will travel around a game board with four goals:

  • Retrieve samples cached by the Mars Science Laboratory, Curiosity
  • Gather, sort, and separate unusual and interesting samples detected from orbit
  • Load the samples into return containers
  • Assemble the return vehicle (rocket) and prep it for launch

Mayer described the tasks in the tournament challenge as never having a single solution. The teams receive a kit with hundreds of parts such as sensors, motors and structural pieces. Students are free to be as inventive with the kit components as possible. The result is a fleet of unique robots that allow the students to see the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches, especially in head-to-head competition.

Double elimination rounds begin at 2 p.m. An awards presentation is set for 5:30 p.m. For more information visit the regional tournament website.

Edwardsville High School is the defending champion.

The SIUE School of Engineering offers one of the most comprehensive and affordable engineering programs in the St. Louis region with eight undergraduate degrees, five master's degrees and a cooperative doctoral program, all housed in a state-of-the-art facility. Students learn from expert faculty, perform cutting-edge research, and participate in intercollegiate design competitions. Companies in the metropolitan St. Louis area provide students challenging internships and co-op opportunities which often turn into permanent employment. All undergraduate programs are accredited by their respective accreditation agencies.

SIUE's Morris Taylor Talks Boston Marathon and Terrorism on KSDK-TV

16 April 2013, 8:26 am

SIUE 's Dr. Morris Taylor appeared on KSDK-TV's 10 p.m. news Monday night to discuss the Boston Marathon explosions and the possibility of terrorism. Taylor is an associate professor of public administration and policy analysis in SIUE's College of Arts & Sciences and is an expert on terrorism. View the interview with KSDK anchor Mike Bush.

Charter School Showcases its High Tech Lab at the Start of Chancellor Installation Week at SIUE

15 April 2013, 5:02 pm

Students demonstrated how they are "Planning for Our Global Future" on Monday, during installation week for Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Chancellor Dr. Julie Furst-Bowe. The SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School Open House and Tour showcased its nearly $1 million William Frederick Graebe Sr. STEM Learning Center for University personnel and community members.

"So much progress has been made here at the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) Learning Center," said Furst-Bowe in her greetings during the open house ceremonies. The chancellor recalled first hearing about the STEM Learning Center when she interviewed for the position more than a year ago. The STEM lab opened in February 2012.

"It means a lot to have the Charter High School participating in the Chancellor's Installation," Furst-Bowe said.

Welcoming the guests were Gina Washington, director of the Charter High School; and Brandon Rice, Charter High School Student Government president. The guests included University administrators and staff, and such community members as East St. Louis Mayor Alvin Parks and Dr. Katie Harper Wright, writer, educator and namesake of the Dr. Katie Harper Wright Elementary School in East St. Louis.

Rice informed the group about the Charter School's robotics team, and some of its activities and successes. The robotics team placed fourth in the National Botball Tournament in California, said Rice, the team's design captain.

"Our young people are our most valuable resource we have," said Parks. "This lab will go a long way in helping them."

Willis Young, assistant director of the Charter High School, briefly informed the crowd about the myriad technological feats and features of the learning center. An abbreviated list includes:

• A 70-inch multi-touch SMART interactive LCD board

• Four-panel video wall

• HD teleconferencing capabilities

• A 3D fabrication machine that allows users to design and create prototypes with moving parts

• Walls that can be written on

• Two programmable robots.

"But one of the things that makes the STEM Learning Center great is the student ownership of their instruction and learning process," said Dr. Bette Bergeron, dean of the SIUE School of Education. "The students were instrumental in creating the lab 1 ½ years ago and now it's exciting to see them immersed in the learning lab."

Sharon Locke, director of the SIUE Center for STEM Research, Education, and Outreach, agrees. "Ms. (Gina) Washington, the teachers and students are doing an amazing job in making this learning center a reality. The technology is wonderful, but without the people it's just a room."

Following the ceremony, the audience took part in student-led tours of the Charter High School and the Charter High School Expo, which showcased information and student work from all of the school's classes. Leading the tours were James Washington and Daje'Na Lockett, both seniors; and Taylor Luster, Starr Gibson and Angelica Howard, all juniors.

"The Charter High School is a great place to learn and to plan for an even greater future," said freshman Gaige Crowell. Crowell, who was manning Aaron Vance's health class table, explained the assignment of using creative objects to construct a diagram of the human skeleton. The first place award went to James Washington, who crafted a skeleton using such items as a light bulb, clothes pins, safety pins and hair clamps.

Aaliah Bevery, a junior at the Charter high school, was at the STEM table. She explained some of the math equations on the board. Beverly wants to be a pre-med major and plans to attend either SIUE or the University of Texas at Arlington.

"This STEM (Learning) Center and the Charter High School are really helping our children," said Wright, who also serves on the Charter High School Community Advisory Council. "I'm here today because I really support the Charter High School. It's getting our children ready for the world of work."

The Chancellor's Installation Week continues Tuesday. For more information about this week's events, visit

Watch the video.

Student In the News for Playing and Posting a Tune a Day to YouTube

15 April 2013, 11:58 am

Jesse Hite, a junior in the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Business, has taken on the challenge of writing one song each day for the next year and posting all the songs on YouTube. He began the effort in June 2012 and now has published nearly 290 songs.

An article about Hite's love of music and his commitment to the effort is available through

Belleville News-Democrat Article Features Dyslexic Student's Website

15 April 2013, 11:16 am

Jason Braun, 35, a graduate student at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, created a website to assist fellow dyslexic students check for homophones in documents. His efforts are featured in a recent article published in the Belleville News-Democrat ( BND.)

Homophones are words that sound alike but have different meanings. People living with dyslexia often use the wrong word thinking it is being correctly used. The use of spell-check on a computer does not catch the error since the word is not incorrectly spelled.

Braun's web application can be found at It allows writers to check for errors that ordinary word processing software cannot catch. More information is available in the BND article, which was published Thursday, April 11.

SIUE Science Building Featured in St. Louis Construction News and Review

15 April 2013, 10:32 am

Representing Hastings & Chivetta Architects, Inc., Chris Chivetta was interviewed by St. Louis Construction News and Review for an article touting the progress on Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's new Science Building. Chivetta is the president and principal in charge of the architectural firm. Read the article.

SIUE's Cacciatore to be Inducted into St. Louis Soccer Hall of Fame

15 April 2013, 9:17 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville alum Jeff Cacciatore will be inducted into the St. Louis Soccer Hall of Fame on Oct. 17. He is a faculty member at Whitfield (Mo.) High School and head girls soccer coach.

Cacciatore played collegiate soccer at SIUE where he was a member of the Cougar's 1979 NCAA Division I national championship team. He was inducted into the SIUE Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009.

Read about Cacciatore in

SIUE's Gary Mayer Talks Botball on KMOX Radio

15 April 2013, 8:40 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville hosts the seventh annual Greater St. Louis Botball Tournament Saturday, April 20 in the Morris University Center's Meridian Ballroom. Gary Mayer, Ph.D., an assistant professor of computer science in the SIUE School of Engineering and one of the event organizers, spoke with KMOX's Charlie Brennan last week about the event. Listen to the interview.

SIUE's Gilbert Joins Sandberg Phoenix Law Firm

12 April 2013, 11:18 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's John Gilbert has joined Sandberg Phoenix's law office in Edwardsville. Gilbert has served as a lecturer in management and marketing since 1985 in SIUE's School of Business. Read about Gilbert in the Madison-St. Clair Record .

SIUE Softball Featured on KSDK-TV

12 April 2013, 10:45 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's softball program has been enjoying a standout 2013 season and has won 11 straight. The Cougars and head coach Sandy Montgomery were featured Thursday on KSDK-TV Sports with Renee Knott. View it here.

SIUE's Calvin Jarrell Featured in Belleville News-Democrat

12 April 2013, 10:33 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville professor J. Calvin Jarrell was featured in Thursday's Belleville News-Democrat. Read about Jarrell's hard work to bring "Carmina Burana" to the Katherine Dunham Theater on the SIUE campus. Jarrell directs the dance program within the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences.

Women Talk about Career/Family Balance at SIUE Meridian Society Workshop

11 April 2013, 11:47 am

Managing a healthy balance between careers and families was one of the topics of a four-woman panel at the Women's Philanthropy & Leadership Workshop on Tuesday, hosted by the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Meridian Society. The Society's annual workshop included a panel discussion, a keynote speaker, a luncheon, recognition of awards and a welcome by SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe.

Having a husband who does all the housework is one way of helping find the balance, said Regina Hays, SIUE University police chief, to a laughing audience of mostly women. Hays told the crowd that her career in law enforcement began when she became the first female hired at the Edwardsville Police Department in 1978.

Hays was one of four panelists, all of whom are SIUE alumni. The other panelists included: Dr. Briana Oller, dentist and owner of Simply Smiles Dental Care; Tanya Patton, principal in the Edwardsville School District #7; and Dr. Susan Schaberg, dermatologist and owner of Schaberg Dermatology.

"One thing you have to learn is that things will not be perfect," Oller said. "Having a perfect office, family, house, does not exist."

For women trying to succeed in their careers, one piece of advice given by all the panelists was to benefit from a mentor.

"Find someone who will support you," Patton said. "I had two wonderful women in my life. One important thing one of my mentors told me was, 'You are still responsible for your behavior regardless of what happens to you in life.'"

Another word of counsel for women in business came from Schaberg. "Reinvent yourself," she said. "I've changed careers several times. Try to figure out what you like. Take chances and go for it."

Also at the workshop, Furst-Bowe welcomed about 130 participants. "On behalf of the University community," Furst-Bowe told the crowd, "I want to congratulate the Meridian Society for its ongoing work offering women philanthropic and leadership opportunities, and I want to renew SIUE's commitment to partnering in these activities."

During the luncheon, the 2013 Meridian Award recipients were announced. The organization awarded nearly $25,000 for programs to benefit the region. SIUE programs/partnership organizations and the amounts they were awarded include:

• "Building Sustainable Regional Communities," Department of Speech Communication/Granite City Youth Center, $2,500

• "Celloboration! Let the fun begin: Educational activities for cellists of all ages," Music Department/Metro East String Association (MESA), $1,500

• "Children's Literature for the Transgender Community," Department of Anthropology/Transvisibility Program of LGBT Center, St. Louis, $1,000

• "Failure is Not an Option: Capitalization Grit for Academic Achievement," School of Education/East St. Louis Charter High School, $2,100

• "Fostering an International Speaker Series," the Center for International Programs/St. Louis Council on Foreign Relations, World Affairs Co., $3,000

• "Friends of Lovejoy Library High School Writers' Contest," Friends of Lovejoy Library/57 Local High Schools, $1,000

• "Handicap This! Presentation: Increasing Disability Awareness," Department of Special Education & Communication Disorders/Socially and Educationally Engaged Community, Inc. (SEEC), $1,095

• "Hospice Volunteer Initiative," School of Pharmacy, Class of 2015/Hospice of Southern Illinois, $1,400

• "It's Your Garden - Grow It!" The Gardens at SIUE/Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois, $3,500

• "Oral Health Education Program for Madison County Public Schools," the SIU School of Dental Medicine/Madison County Regional Office of Education, $3,000

• "Prevention of Prescription Drug Abuse in Youth," School of Pharmacy/student chapter of the American Pharmacist Association and Student Society of Health System Pharmacists, $1,500

• "Training in Goal Setting, Time Management, and Professional Image for Fontebella Maternity Center Residents," Department of Speech Communication/Fontebella Maternity Shelter, $2,000.

"These partnerships are so important to the University and to the community at large," said Furst-Bowe. "SIUE's value of citizenship calls for social, civic and political responsibility and active partnerships. It's through collaboration that we are able to further our programs and the development of professional and community leaders, strengthening the social, political and economic base of our community for years to come."

About the Meridian Society

As an auxiliary organization of the SIUE Foundation, the Meridian Society promotes women's leadership and invests in SIUE community-based projects. Through pooled resources and collective giving, the women of the Meridian Society demonstrate a spirit of philanthropy and a commitment to making a positive impact in the community. The Meridian Society accepts funding applications for projects benefitting SIUE Community Based Projects. Bringing together the financial power, influence and voices of women since its inception in 2003, the Meridian Society has given 72 awards totaling over $181,000. This year's Meridian Society president is Elizabeth Keserauskis, SIUE assistant vice chancellor for University Relations and executive director of University Marketing & Communications.

Photo Information:

Panelists from left to right are Dr. Susan Schaberg, Tanya Patton, Dr. Briana Oller and Regina Hays.

SIUE Police Chief Hays Featured in Belleville News-Democrat

11 April 2013, 10:53 am

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Police Chief Gina Hays was featured last weekend in the Belleville News-Democrat. Read the piece from the Lifestyle/Family section.

Loretta Goebel Inspires Many on SIUE Campus to Live Life and Re-Bloom

10 April 2013, 3:51 pm

Motivational speaker Loretta Goebel uplifted audience members Tuesday on the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville campus by sharing her story of bravery, tenacity and faith in the face of unexpected illness, looming death and life-changing alterations.

"If you didn't know my story, you wouldn't know my loss," Goebel, a bi-lateral amputee, told the crowd at the Women's Philanthropy & Leadership Workshop, hosted by the SIUE Meridian Society. Goebel was the keynote speaker at the workshop that ran from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and included a panel discussion and luncheon. Goebel's story is chronicled in "A Life in Parts," written by Vicki Bennington and Daniel Brannan.

A stylish and poised Goebel took the stage and began to unfold her story that began with a seemingly harmless incident of her banging her right hand against a banister. But the course of events that followed proved to be severely harmful, and when Goebel had concluded her story, the motivational speaker "popped off" body parts and compelled her audience to live life to its fullest.

It was Dec. 11, 2001, and Goebel, a wife and stay-at-home mother, was in the basement wrapping Christmas presents when she heard the doorbell ring, she told the crowded room of listeners. It was when Goebel ran up the stairs that she struck her right hand on the banister and dislodged a strep virus that was evidently harbored in a "winter crack" in her right thumb.

Five days later, Goebel awoke to severe pain in her right hand and arm, and her then husband, Wally, rushed her to the hospital emergency room. It was then that the family learned Goebel was suffering from the effects of the strep germ that had entered her blood stream through the crack in her thumb, eventually leading to strep toxic shock.

"My blood pressure was 40 over 20, and I was given a 10 percent chance to live," Goebel said. "My family was told I needed a miracle, and my sisters were told to start planning my funeral."

But Goebel did recover to a point where her life was out of danger. But as a result of medications that saved her life, circulation to her limbs was lost, resulting in the need for multiple amputations.

"On Feb. 21, 2002, the night before I had to have my legs amputated, I cried and prayed and told God that he was with his son, Jesus, when he went to the cross," Goebel said. "(I said) Please give me the courage to face what I must. And I slept like a baby."

On Feb. 22, 2002, Goebel had both her legs amputated eight inches below her knees.

"Some women say it feels good when you take off your shoes; when I pop off my legs, I feel that same relief," Goebel said, as she slipped off both prosthetic legs, while sitting on stage.

In the end, Goebel also had her right hand amputated, and she lost the biggest portion of four fingers on her left hand. Ironically, her right thumb that she struck, is the only digit still intact. Due to pain medication, Goebel's hair fell out, but grew back later, after she had "reclaimed" the use of her hands.

"Most women carry a purse," Goebel joked, as she sat on stage with her prosthetic legs next to her, "but I carry a hand bag." And with that, she removed her right hand prosthetic and put it into her bag.

"Loretta serves as an example that just because parts of your life change, it doesn't mean it has to take away your essence," said Bennington, an SIUE alumnus, during her introduction of Loretta.

Goebel's struggles brought her into contact with several celebrities, including Paul McCartney's ex-wife, Heather Mills. Mills, who is an amputee, counseled Goebel when she first lost her legs and helped her find prosthetics that better suited her. The foreword in Goebel's book is written by Mills, and some endorsements of "A Life in Parts" include Paul McCartney and supermodel Cindy Crawford.

"Loretta has such a positive attitude," wrote McCartney. "I'm proud of how she handled all the obstacles she had to overcome and the way she reaches out to help others."

Goebel told her SIUE audience that she made a choice to "re-bloom."

"Do you feel you're being pruned in one way or another?" Goebel said. "Lift your face from the soil and point it toward God. Although the world seems a scary place, God is in control."

Goebel said she does not consider herself "handicapped."

"When you don't live your life to the fullest," she said, "that's being handicapped."

For more information about Goebel or to order the book, visit

Photo Information:

Loretta Goebel talks to a crowded audience during the SIUE Meridan Society Women's Philanthropy & Leadership Workshop.

Public Universities' Leaders Endorse Pension Plan

10 April 2013, 1:16 pm

The presidents and chancellors of the 14 public universities in Illinois have unanimously endorsed a six-point proposal for addressing the state's pension funding crisis as it relates to the State Universities Retirement System (SURS), and in a letter to the governor and legislative leaders they called it "a thoughtful and responsible approach."

"We write to inform you of our unanimous endorsement of the reform proposal recently published by the Institute of Government and Public Affairs (IGPA) of the University of Illinois entitled, 'Six Simple Steps: Reforming the Illinois State University Retirement System.' We believe that, as a package, the steps outlined in this proposal represent a viable path forward for reforming the SURS pension plan," the university chiefs stated. "Compared to other options, it represents the most desirable long-term solution."

The individual steps outlined in detail in the IGPA paper (, which is part of the institute's ongoing contribution to the pension funding dialogue, would do the following:

  • Change the annual cost of living adjustment (COLA) to link it to the consumer price index
  • Change the value of the Effective Rate of Interest to eliminate a so-called "hidden subsidy"
  • Shift pension contributions by the state to colleges and universities in a gradual transition
  • Increase employee contributions by an additional 2 percent
  • Require the state to amortize the current SURS unfunded liability
  • Provide a new "hybrid" defined-benefit/defined-contribution plan for new employees

The letter to Gov. Pat Quinn and the four legislative leaders, Democrat House Speaker Michael Madigan and Senate President John Cullerton, and Republican House Leader Tom Cross and Senate Leader Christine Radogno, was sent by the university presidents and chancellors on April 4. The General Assembly returns this week from its spring recess and faces a May 31 deadline for adjournment.

"Our goal has been to identify potential reforms that are financially prudent and consistent with principles of constitutionality, fairness, and equity," the letter stated. It acknowledged the additional financial burdens to be borne by the universities and their employees through the cost shift and COLA adjustment.

"The cost shift will be feasible only if phased in slowly, as recommended in the (IGPA) paper, and made concurrent with a stabilization of general revenue appropriations during the transition," the letter stated. "We also realize that linking cost of living adjustment to the CPI will reduce retiree earnings in the short term. But this change also provides long-term insurance against high inflation, a valuable benefit for participants."

In closing, the presidents and chancellors reiterated their continued collective interest in "working with you and others in the General Assembly to translate these ideas into legislation."

2013 Faculty/Staff Appreciation Reception to Take Place Next Wednesday

10 April 2013, 10:32 am

The 2013 Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Faculty/Staff Appreciation Reception will take place from 10-11:30 a.m. Wednesday, April 17 in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

Faculty and staff members are encouraged to attend the free event. Light refreshments will be served and the sounds of a jazz combo provided by the SIUE Department of Music will delight the audience.

Exciting prizes will be awarded during a random drawing following the event.

The event is part of activities leading up to the installation of SIUE's Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe. The chancellor's installation will take place from 10-11:30 a.m. Friday, April 19 in the Meridian Ballroom. A complete schedule for the installation week is available on the chancellor's installation website.

37th Annual Probst Lecture Featured a Prolific Young U.S. Chemist

9 April 2013, 9:13 am

Dr. Christopher Cummins presented "Nitrogen and Phosphorus: Fertilizer from the Atmosphere to the Oceans" during the 37 th annual Probst Lecture in March at the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Morris University Center.

Described as one of the most prolific young chemists in America, Cummins shared his insights into the forefront of inorganic chemistry. Cummins' work in inorganic chemistry has been recognized by numerous prestigious organizations. He graduated with a Ph.D. from MIT in 1993 and was hired immediately as an assistant professor. In 1996 he was promoted to the rank of professor.

He has authored more than 150 research articles, advised 21 Ph.D. graduates and served on many boards of important inorganic chemistry journals during his 20-year career. Cummins has been the recipient of Harvard University's E. Bright Wilson Price, the American Cancer Society's Award in Pure Chemistry, the National Science Foundation Alan T. Waterman Award and various other impressive awards. He has been recognized nationally and internationally for his creativity, rigor and record of research success in the field of inorganic chemistry.

The purpose of the annual Probst Lecture is to expand student and faculty awareness of how inorganic chemistry can be used to address issues in renewable energy and the development of new chemistries.

SIUE Student Employee of the Year 2013 Honored Monday

8 April 2013, 4:20 pm

Austin Potthoff, a senior business major, was named the 2013 Southern Illinois University Edwardsville student employee of the year Monday.

Potthoff is a student employee who offers general clerical support in the Office of the Bursar. The Student Employee of the Year is selected based on reliability, work quality, initiative, professionalism and uniqueness of contribution. The honor is given each year to coincide with Student Employee Appreciation Week.

"Austin is an enthusiastic, bright, responsible, motivated student with excellent communication skills," said his nominator, Cathy Foland, associate director in the SIUE Office of the Bursar.

Potthoff has worked in the bursar's office to update the current billing system used through Cougarnet. He now is in the process of developing training materials to help staff members and students understand their Cougarnet bills.

"He's integrating the work he is doing in the classroom with his job as a student worker to enhance his educational experience and put him ahead of the pack when he seeks a job after graduating from SIUE," Foland said.

Makerspaces and Tech Labs Topics During SIUE Library Symposium

8 April 2013, 3:18 pm

Two speakers will tackle the topic of Makerspaces and Technology Labs during the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Library and Information Services Spring Symposium 2013. The topic will be covered at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday in the Lovejoy Library, third-floor conference room.

Sharon Locke, director of the SIUE Center for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Research, Education and Outreach, and associate professor, will talk about the development of the William Frederick Graebe, Sr. STEM Learning Center at the East St. Louis Charter High School. She will focus on the vision for the space to offer a flexible, state-of-the-art learning environment for students and community members to create and innovate.

Gene Jordan, Arch Reactor Makerspace, will discuss the history of Hackerspaces and Makerspaces, as well as introduce a variety of tools, projects and educational workshops used in a collaborative environment. Jordan will invite attendees to become involved with the local creative expression community that is taking shape in most major cities around the world.

The free event is open to the public and sponsored by the Library and Information Services Research, Projects and Development Committee, and the Friends of Lovejoy Library. Refreshments will be served.

For more information, contact (618) 650-4636.

SIUE's Chris Herndon Helps Teach National Pain Program

8 April 2013, 2:52 pm

Chris Herndon, an associate professor in the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy, is helping teach a national pain training program that has selected 10 pharmacists from across the country.

Herndon is a faculty member for the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP) Research and Education Foundation's 2012-2013 Pain and Palliative Care Traineeship Program - Level 3.

The Pain and Palliative Care Traineeship Program is a tiered educational initiative, supported by an educational grant from Endo Pharmaceuticals, that includes the following components: level 1, pain management and palliative care self-assessment tool (knowledge-based activity); level 2, application of the principles of pain management and palliative care (application-based activity); and level 3, live experiential program, (practice-based activity).

These unique educational activities were designed so pharmacists can systematically acquire specific knowledge, skills, attitudes and performance behaviors to expand and enhance practice competencies in pain management and palliative care. The tiered program provides a series of educational activities that build on the preceding level.

"The reviewers were overwhelmed with the quality of the applicants and the obvious passion they show for helping those with pain," said Herndon. "I wish we could take all of them. The ASHP Foundation Pain Traineeship is a phenomenal opportunity.

For more information regarding the Pain and Palliative Care Traineeship Program, please visit

About the ASHP Foundation

The ASHP Research and Education Foundation ( was established in 1968 by the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists (ASHP),, as a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization. As the philanthropic arm of ASHP, our vision is that patient outcomes improve because of the leadership and clinical skills of pharmacists, as vital members of the health care team, accountable for safe and effective medication use. Our mission is to improve the health and well-being of patients in health systems through appropriate, safe and effective medication use.

Mary and Jerry Kane to Receive SIUE Distinguished Service Awards

8 April 2013, 2:02 pm

Jerry Kane, Distinguished Service Award recipient.

The Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees will present the Distinguished Service Award to Jerry and Mary Kane at the May 2013 Southern Illinois University Edwardsville commencement. Graduation exercises at the Vadalabene Center on the SIUE campus are scheduled for Friday and Saturday, May 3-4.

"Mary and Jerry Kane continue to be staunch supporters of SIUE and southwestern Illinois," SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe said. "They are truly deserving of this honor. I look forward to working collaboratively with them in the future to enhance SIUE's standing in the region and throughout the country."

"Our lasting impression of SIUE is the amazing quality of its leadership," Mary Kane said. "SIUE has benefited from people of vision who are intelligent, politically wise in a good sense and single-mindedly focused on SIUE's future success.

"SIUE educators and administrators have taken SIUE to a new level: a nationally recognized institution. The best part is that these talented, committed individuals are active not only within the University, but also in the communities in which they live."

Mary Kane serves as senior vice president, public finance, for Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. Her service to the region includes:

• Serving as executive director for the Southwestern Illinois Development Authority, an agency formed in 1988 by the Illinois legislature to promote economic development in Madison and St. Clair counties, and prior to that as county administrator for Madison County.

• Membership on the SIUE Foundation Board of Directors since 1995, serving at various points as treasurer, chairman of the board, vice president and president. She also serves on the SIUE "Defining Excellence" Campaign steering committee.

• Membership in the Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois Board of Directors and the Illinois Public Affairs Committee of the St. Louis Regional Chamber and Growth Association.

• Selection as a St Louis Area Woman of Achievement.

• Recipient of the Edwardsville/Glen Carbon Chamber of Commerce's Albert Cassens Award for Outstanding Community Achievement.

"I initially got involved with the SIUE Foundation as an opportunity to contribute to something I felt was worthwhile," Mary Kane said. "But like many situations, where you think you are the giver, the foundation gave back much more to me; not only friends, but also the opportunity to enhance my understanding, knowledge and expertise in my own career field of investment banking."

Jerry Kane currently serves as executive director of the Agency for Community Transit (ACT), which he founded with the assistance of senior SIUE faculty. The organization provides transportation for the elderly and disabled residents of Madison County. He also serves as managing director of the Madison County Mass Transit District (MCT).

One of his first acts as managing director of MCT in 1986 was to initiate public transit to the campus through a contract with the Bi-State Development Agency. Later in the mid-90's MCT assumed the campus service directly and began operating the Cougar Shuttle under contract with the University.

MCT provides bus service to more than two million riders each year, including many members of the SIUE community. MCT facilitates ride share options through its RideFinders program and owns and operates the 120 mile Madison County Transit trail system. In 1993, Kane was responsible for including the SIUE campus in the trail system

In March 2013, Mr. Kane and the MCT Board were named by Focus St Louis as one of 20 outstanding organizations and initiatives as part of the 16th annual What's Right with the Region awards. The award recognizes area innovative leaders and services to the community that showcase outstanding efforts to make St. Louis a better region in which to live, work and enjoy life. Mr. Kane is a member of the Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois' (LCSWI) Board of Directors. In 2007, LCSWI honored his efforts to expand MCT and enhance the lives of citizens throughout Madison County.

"The University's Foundation has made a difference in SIUE students' lives, and our relationship with the foundation board has been truly special to us," Jerry Kane said. "There are not many public universities that have a growing, thriving foundation, but SIUE is one that does. Without the foundation, a significant part of the momentum and money to develop educational programs, building projects and scholarships, would never have been realized."

Canoe Competition was Highlight at ASCE Mid-Continent Student Conference

8 April 2013, 1:23 pm

SIUE Civil Engineering students work to move a concrete canoe that students created out of water during the annual regional ASCE Conference.

SIUE students compete in the annual concrete canoe competition, which was held on campus Saturday.

From April 4-6, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville hosted the 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Mid-Continent Student Conference. Approximately 330 civil engineering students and faculty from 15 Midwest universities participated in the competition.

The University of Oklahoma took the top spot in this year's annual regional concrete canoe competition, which is a major highlight of the conference. The competition took place at the SIUE Cougar Lake Marina on Saturday. The SIUE Concrete Canoe Team won last year's competition, which was held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

The first place team is invited to the national competition. For more information, visit the conference website.

SIUE students took part in the concrete canoe competition, which was part of the annual ASCE regional conference, held on the SIUE campus.

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