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April 2014

Old Dutch Classic Bats is Metro East Startup Challenge Winner

30 April 2014, 9:50 am

SIUE Metro East Start-Up Challenge 04-28-14A vintage baseball bat manufacturer and a grain-to-glass distiller captured first and second place in the Metro East Startup Challenge, the first regional business plan competition conducted for entrepreneurs in Southwestern Illinois.

Plucked from a diverse array of Metro East startups, sole proprietor Todd “Dutch” Eschman, founder of Old Dutch Classic Bats in Swansea, nabbed the $10,000 first prize. Eschman’s firm manufactures custom baseball bats for vintage baseball players, those who wear period reproduction uniforms and follow the rules and customs of the game as it was played in the mid-to-late 1800s.

Adam Stumpf, president and CEO of Stumpy’s Spirits Co., secured second place and $5,000. The start-up distillery is located on the seventh generation family farm in Columbia. The distillery will produce spirits using grain produced on the family farm.

University Park at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville sponsored the event, with PNC Bank and the St. Louis Regional Chamber serving as award sponsors. The SIUE Metro East Start-Up Challenge is designed to recognize and reward excellence in entrepreneurship.

More than 30 innovative entrepreneurs from the Metro East Small Business Development Center’s nine-county service area competed in the three-stage event. Entrants submitted their initial applications in mid-February. Fifteen semifinalists were invited to submit full business plans which were  evaluated by a team of ten volunteer judges. 

Six business teams were selected to make a final presentation. Over the past several weeks, SBDC staff provided workshops and individual counseling support to help the contestants prepare for the final two rounds of competition.

On Monday, April 28, the finalists delivered three-minute pitches to a panel of expert judges followed by five minutes of questions and answers. The winners were announced in front of the live audience.

The competition judges were John Navin, interim dean of the Business School at SIUE, Mitch Meyers, partner in The Proof Agency and SIUE Foundation Board member, and Jay Delong, vice president of New Ventures and Capital Formation at the St. Louis Regional Chamber.

Jim Pennekamp, executive director of University Park, said the caliber of entrants in the inaugural competition was impressive.

“Entrepreneurship is a key economic development strategy” said Pennekamp. “SIUE is providing leadership and support for entrepreneurs while advancing the academic mission of the University by strengthening relationships with private enterprise and expanding learning opportunities for students and faculty.

“We’re delighted with the response and with the quality and creativity of those who competed. Congratulations to our winners, and to all six finalists.”

Other finalists who presented at the live round included: Working Class Benefits LLC (Joseph Culver) in Granite City; BonafID Catch (Joan Stader and Charles Murphree) in Alton; Vet Check-in (Joe Wayman) of Highland; and Broadway Billboards (David Lindsey) in Maryville.

Patrick McKeehan, director of the Metro East SBDC with offices in Edwardsville and East St. Louis, said the competition successfully met its four goals.

“We worked extremely hard to increase the region’s interest in and excitement for business start-ups through a competitive process,” McKeehan said. “We also identified ‘high-impact’ start-ups for possible location in University Park’s new Business Enterprise Center.

“We sought to generate a greater awareness of the Metro East SBDC’s services as well as the wealth of resources for entrepreneurs and small business owners across our region. Thanks to University Park at SIUE, SIUE’s School of Business, our award sponsors, supporters and competitors, we accomplished those goals. We look forward to making this an annual competition.”

The SBDC is a service to the community supported by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the Illinois Dept. of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and the SIUE School of Business.

SIUE operates two Small Business Development Centers and the International Trade Center. All centers provide resources and information to entrepreneurs, business owners, small business service providers and the University community located in the Metro East region which includes Calhoun, Jersey, Madison, Bond, Clinton, St. Clair, Washington, Monroe and Randolph counties.

By assisting entrepreneurs and companies in defining their path to success, the SBDC network positively impacts the Metro East by strengthening the business community, creating and retaining new jobs and encouraging new investment. It enhances the region’s economic interests by providing one-stop assistance to individuals by means of counseling, training, research and advocacy for new ventures and existing small businesses. When appropriate, the SBDC strives to affiliate its ties to the region to support the goals and objectives of both the SIUE School of Business and the University at large.

Photo:  Jim Pennekamp, executive director of University Park at SIUE, presents the Metro East Startup Challenge winner’s check to Todd “Dutch” Eschman, founder of Old Dutch Classic Bats.

Higher Learning Commission Gives SIUE High Marks

29 April 2014, 11:57 am

The North Central Association’s (NCA) Higher Learning Commission (HLC) visited Southern Illinois University Edwardsville in mid-March. SIUE met all of the accreditation and compliance standards required in the HLC’s Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP).

The HLC conducts Quality Checkup visits to institutions during the fifth or sixth year in every seven-year cycle of AQIP participation. The visits determine whether the institution continues to meet the HLC’s criteria for accreditation, uses quality management principles and builds a culture of continuous improvement as AQIP participation requires.

Dr. Omar El-Gayar, dean of Graduate Studies and Research at Dakota State University, and Dr. Kathy Parkison, interim vice chancellor for Academic Affairs at Indiana University-Kokomo, comprised the checkup team.

Highlights of the review included:

  • SIUE’s approach to the Quality Checkup through documentation and performance were acceptable and complied with the Commission’s expectations.
  • SIUE has made deliberate improvements in its processes. Specifically, SIUE has made significant contribution to the development and integration of its assessment processes. SIUE presented examples of processes that demonstrated the institution takes data collection and analysis seriously, and uses data to drive process improvements.
  • SIUE has developed an integrated budget and strategic planning process that uses data to align actions throughout the institution.
  • SIUE has moved towards integrating and aligning the services of units and entities in accordance to its newly developed strategic plan consistent with a culture of continuous quality improvement.
  • SIUE provided evidence of its commitment to a data driven continuous quality improvement process. This is evidenced by the development and implementation of a new integrated planning process that includes the University Quality Council (UQC), the University Planning and Budget Committee (UPBC) and input from various stakeholder groups. Central to this process is landscape analysis, communication and alignment of initiatives, and regular reporting and feedback.

SIUE Seniors Show Off their Assignments

25 April 2014, 5:11 pm

Senior Assignment Showcase 04-22-14

More than 100 Southern Illinois University Edwardsville students from 38 various departments and programs displayed their work Tuesday at the 2014 Senior Assignment Showcase at Morris University Center.

The Showcase included multi-media and poster presentations, readings and live dance performances. The program has received national attention. Each Senior Assignment is uniquely owned by its department and program, and demonstrates what the University’s baccalaureate graduates should be capable of achieving.

Senior Assignment Showcase 04-22-14

SIUE has been recognized by U.S. News and World Report for its outstanding senior capstone experience.

Photo Information:

Timothy Gentry of Mechanical Engineering is presenting to Kim Durr, SIUE chancellor executive assistant, and Rachel Stack, vice chancellor of University Advancement.

Kristin Dierker of Exercise Science explains her project.


Award-Winning SIUE Seniors Put their Projects in the Spotlight

25 April 2014, 5:04 pm

Seniors at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville were recently selected to showcase their outstanding scholarship and involvement in campus life.

Twenty-two students received SIUE’s 2014 Senior Standout Awards on April 22 at the Morris University Center.

The award recognizes those graduating seniors who have demonstrated impressive knowledge and shown a commitment to leadership and service.

Requirements for the winners include:

• Graduating with a baccalaureate degree in May or August 2014

• Have a minimum 3.75 cumulative GPA

• Be an engaged leader on campus

• Have been involved in community service on or off campus


Seniors capturing this year’s awards and their respective majors included:


James Beil, Psychology and Corporate/Organizational Communication

Sarah Borlee, Elementary Education

Christopher Branch, Electrical Engineering

Robert Budron, Philosophy & Political Science

Charmaine Burrus, Political Science

Cynthia Campbell, Sociology

Daniel Cluphf, Economics & Finance

Hilary Conrad, Community Health

Burcu Demirci, Industrial Engineering

Jacob Dicus, Mass Communications

Lora Dust, Accountancy

Cori Harris, Chemistry- Medical Science

Brian Heger, Mathematical Studies

Maeve Juenger, Business Economics and Finance, Accountancy

Kelsey Maves, Geography

Brandy McAdams-Hart, Psychology

Erica Metheney, Mathematical Studies: Statistics

Jeremy Mintun, Computer Management Information Systems

Cody Stewart, Economics and Finance

Ryan Tite, Accountancy

Todd Vogel, Psychology

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.


SIUE Interprofessional Education Seminar Shapes Health Care Professionals

24 April 2014, 4:32 pm

Pharmacy Nursing School of Pharmacy Cross Cultural Communication 2-12-13The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy, School of Nursing and Department of Speech Communication hosted a two-day interprofessional education (IPE) seminar during March.

The second annual “Culturally Competent Communication Seminar” was designed for sophomore nursing students and second year pharmacy students to learn about culture in health care settings from a collaborative approach.

Teams of nursing and pharmacy students engaged in case studies focused on developing cross-cultural communication skills. The students gained knowledge on the differences and health preferences among diverse patients, as well as how each other’s professions address goals and patient needs.

The seminar was organized and conducted by Dr. Min Liu, assistant professor of speech communication, Dr. Rhonda Comrie, associate professor of primary care/health systems nursing, and Drs. Lakesha Butler and Terri Poirier, pharmacy faculty members. It added value to the health sciences curriculum. Comrie noted that the program is the first of several opportunities for nursing and pharmacy students to interact throughout their programs.

“It is important to expose our students to IPE opportunities, so they can learn to collaborate with other members of a health care team,” said Liu. “With SIUE’s existing professional programs related to various health fields, there is a wonderful opportunity to develop more IPE programs like this.”

“The topic of cross-cultural communication is an especially important topic due to changing demographics of patients encountered in all health care settings,” said Butler, clinical associate professor of pharmacy practice. “Health care professionals, including nurses and pharmacists, must possess skills to effectively communicate with all patients from various cultural backgrounds. Therefore, the seminar topic is a mutually important topic among nursing and pharmacy.”

Photo (L-R): Keely Vasatka, School of Nursing student; Dr. Cathy Santanello, School of Pharmacy; and Keith Marry, School of Pharmacy student.

SIUE STEM Center Video Gains Exposure at NSTA Conference

24 April 2014, 2:30 pm

Sharon Locke STEM Director Graduate School Research 12_1_11 BillThe Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Center for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Research, Education and Outreach was recently invited to present a documentary video highlighting their work at the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) annual conference in Boston April 3-6. See the video.

The five-minute video features interviews with SIUE administration, faculty, staff and students involved in the interdisciplinary projects of the STEM Center. Highlights include STEM Center research on teaching and learning, the STEM Resource Center and community outreach activities.

“More than 11,500 educators saw the video at the conference venue and via television in conference hotel rooms,” said STEM Center Director Sharon Locke. “WebsEdge Education produced the video with us, partnering with NSTA to showcase our innovative STEM education programs. We thought it to be highly effective in delivering our message and story on a national stage.”

Locke provided an overview of the Center’s broad base of activities. She also highlighted the many people served both on campus and in the community by the Center’s staff and resources.

Jerry Weinberg, associate provost for research and dean of the Graduate School, discussed the importance of the STEM Center to the University, region and national STEM education community through its focus on improving the quality of STEM education and developing STEM interest in children.

The STEM Resource Center lending library was featured in a segment with Colin Wilson, resource center manager. The lending library houses curricula and equipment that educators can borrow free of charge to support innovative classroom or out-of-school instruction. The materials in the library, including a number of expensive scientific probes, were acquired with generous funding from a number of sponsors, including USTRANSCOM at Scott Air Force Base.

Research Professor Mary Stephen discussed STEM Center research currently being conducted regarding the impact of innovative and technology intensive classrooms on teachers and students.

The segment on the Noyce Scholarship Program, a National Science Foundation funded program for pre-service science teachers, featured Amanda Hyett. She is a senior and Noyce Scholar majoring in chemistry education.

The Noyce program is a collaborative project among the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Education and the STEM Center. Students receive special training and mentoring in preparation to becoming effective science teachers.

Earth Week Information Part of Activities and Fun at SIUE’s Springfest

24 April 2014, 9:08 am

Springfest, Earth Week

Singing karaoke, enjoying ice-cream, harnessed jumping on a giant trampoline and learning more information about how to save the Earth highlighted Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s Springfest 2014.

Springfest, organized by SIUE’s Campus Activity Board (CAB), offered a Student Organization Fair today. The fair, which continues Thursday, allows SIUE students to learn more about campus organizations along with dancing, eating and celebrating a great school year.

Springfest, prizes

The Student Organization for Sustainability (SOS) manned one of the many informational booths. The student group passed out free water bottles as part of SIUE’s Earth Week. SOS will also be on the Quad Thursday. Earth Day was April 22.

Springfest, jump rope

“We are trying to increase SIUE’s recycling rate,” said Wolf-Mark Veverka, outgoing SOS president. “With the large amount of grounds and large number of students we have, we potentially could be number one in the Midwest region for recycling.”

SOS was also at Springfest Wednesday to help boost the amount of signatures on a petition calling for students to commit to the cause of sustainability and to encourage the University to do the same.

Springfest, refreshments

“. . . In particular, I commit to the practice of recycling – to doing all I can to reduce the amount of materials entering the landfill and to increase the amount of material being re-used and recycled,” read the petition. “I hereby call on the administration at SIUE to take bold steps toward achieving specific measurable goals in recycling, and for all students, faculty and staff to support recycling efforts.”

The goal is to obtain signatures from approximately10 percent of the SIUE student body or 1,500 names, according to Veverka.

In the last two months, SOS has collected more than 500 signatures, said Kaytlin Patterson, incoming SOS president as of the summer 2014 semester. Wednesday morning netted 100 of the 500 names.

“We hope to present 1,500 names to Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe on Earth Day 2015,” Veverka said. “She has been working with our group and other students regarding sustainability since she has been here. She has been wonderful in helping us.”

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.

Photo Information:

Wolf-Mark Veverka, outgoing Students for Sustainability (SOS) president, and Kaytlin Patterson, incoming SOS president, give away a water bottle to Jessica Patterson.

Rachael Albert spins the wheel for a prize at Wednesday’s Springfest.

Brittany Pangelinan jumps rope at the SIUE School of Pharmacy’s station. Students were on hand to test people’s heart health.

Destinee Mieure is eating ice cream with Tyler Agnew.

SIUE Nursing’s Griffin named AANA’s Federal Political Director of the Year

23 April 2014, 6:22 pm

griffin_midyear_2014Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Nursing’s Dr. Andrew Griffin was honored with the 2014 Daniel D. Vigness Federal Political Director Award by the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA). Griffin was recognized Monday, April 7 during the organization’s Mid-Year Assembly in Washington, D.C. He is the director of the SIUE Nurse Anesthesia Program.

Established in 2001, the Daniel D. Vigness Political Director Award is given annually to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of the national health care agenda of Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists (CRNA) by creating CRNA involvement in their state and in the federal political process.

“I accept this award on behalf of all nurse anesthetists who promote our profession at the state and national level,” said Griffin. “Many achievements of the nurse anesthesia profession are the direct results of CRNAs across the country informing and building relationships with their local legislators. I am truly proud to be a CRNA and equally honored to receive this award.”

“Andy’s knowledge, willingness and ability to talk about the issues important to the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists make him the kind of asset that any advocacy group would be lucky to have working on their behalf,” said U.S. Representative Rodney Davis (R-Ill.). On April 2, Davis recognized Griffin’s accomplishments on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.

A CRNA for nearly 20 years, Griffin has been an active member of the AANA where he has served six-consecutive terms as the federal political director for Illinois. He also currently serves as president-elect for the Illinois Association of Nurse Anesthetists (IANA). Griffin is known to local, state and federal legislators for his political involvement on behalf of the IANA and the AANA.

Griffin serves as the chair for SIUE’s Department of Primary Care and Nursing Health Systems, while working as an assistant professor of nursing. He works closely with nursing students to increase awareness of the importance of involvement in the health care legislative process.

Griffin has a doctorate of philosophy in nursing from the University of Hawaii-Manoa. He earned a master’s in nurse anesthesia at Middle Tennessee School of Anesthesia in Madison. Griffin received two bachelor degrees: a BA from Southern Illinois University Carbondale and a bachelor’s in nursing from Saint Louis University.

Photo: Kent Fair, CRNA; Dr. Andrew Griffin, SIUE; Congressman Rodney Davis; School of Nursing students: Susan Lees, Edwardsville; Kevin Hutcheson, St. Louis; Sara Rosenthal, Springfield.

SIUE’s Huang Receives Enterprise Holdings Leadership Award

23 April 2014, 5:21 pm

School of Business scholarships and Awards Program ceremony SOB 04-10-14The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Business named MBA student Anni Huang, of Maryville, as the recipient of the Enterprise Holdings Student Organization Leader of the Semester Award. She received the award Thursday, April 10 at the Scholarship Luncheon in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

The scholarship is awarded to student leaders who participate in events, show a willingness to take on responsibility, promote innovative ideas and effectively involve others in the organization.

Huang serves as the president of the International Student Council, International Business Association and Society of Chinese Students. During her undergraduate years at SIUE, she was an active member of Beta Alpha Psi.

Dr. Yuping Zeng, associate professor of management and marketing, nominated Huang for the award. “I believe the efforts that Anni has put into the International Business Association highly qualified her for the Enterprise Holdings Student Organization Leader of the Semester Award,” Zeng said. “Her extensive work to organize events and actively recruit members for the organization went above and beyond what was expected.”

“I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to Enterprise for sponsoring this award, and the School of Business for providing students the opportunity to obtain an excellent education and develop leadership skills,” an appreciative Huang said. “Last but not least, I would like to thank Dr. Yuping Zeng for nominating me.”

Along with her active involvement in student organizations, Huang is also working for the SIUE Illinois Small Business Development Center and SIUE International Trade Center as an international trade assistant.

Huang plans to graduate from the MBA program in August. Her future aspirations include passing the CPA exam, working as a public account and eventually become a buyer for an international corporation.

Also recognized at the Scholarship Luncheon were the faculty advisor and student organization leadership award recipients. Dr. Andrea Hester, associate professor of computer management and information systems, received the faculty advisor award. Beta Alpha Psi, the national honorary accounting society, was the student organization winner.

Enterprise Holdings, a primary 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.

Cutline: (Pictured from left to right) Steve Talbott,  Enterprise Holdings; Anni Huang, Maryville, Enterprise Holdings Student Organization Leader of the Semester Award Spring 2014 recipient;  Adam Arras, Enterprise Holidays Student Organization Leader of the Semester Award Fall 2013 recipient; and SIUE School of Business Interim Dean John Navin.

SIU BOT Approves Contracts for SIUE Road Improvements and Baseball Turf Replacement

22 April 2014, 8:25 am

The Southern Illinois University Board of Trustees at its regularly scheduled meeting on the Carbondale campus Thursday, April 17 approved contracts worth more than $1.5 million to complete two separate projects on the Edwardsville campus:

  • Road resurfacing that would include Hairpin Drive, a portion of North University Drive and access to the University cross country running course
  • Replacement of the Simmons Law Firm Baseball Complex outfield’s natural turf with a synthetic surface

During the course of the roadway resurfacing, the intersection of North University and North Circle Drives will be improved to reduce traffic backups and pedestrian conflicts. The project will also overlay Whiteside Road, East University Drive, Supporting Services Road, Cougar Lake Drive and Cougar Village Road to extend the pavement’s life. Pavement markings, traffic signs and accessible curb ramps will also be replaced.

The $891,800 contract to perform the roadwork was awarded to Byrne & Jones Construction of St. Louis. The project will be funded from University Plan funds.

The Simmons Baseball Complex turf replacement will allow for year-round tournament play and training. The project will also replace the perimeter fence and improve field drainage.

The $685,000 contract to perform the turf work was also awarded to Byrne & Jones Construction. The project will be funded from University Plan funds.

SIUE also received project and budget approval for parking lot improvements estimated at $3.6 million. The combined effects of traffic and weather have led to deterioration in the lots, while the light poles have reached the end of their life expectancy. The project would be funded by existing Parking Services Repair, Replacement and Reserve (RRR) funds, and external and/or internal financing as determined by the Board treasurer.

The scope of the repairs would include reconstructing parking lots C, F, and 1-6 along with new light poles equipped with LED fixtures. New pay-by-space equipment would be added to lot B. Drainage improvements are designed for lot 10. Related work includes replacing concrete sidewalks associated with the lots as well as the accompanying cubs, signs and pavement markings.

Oates and Associates of Collinsville was selected as the engineering consultant to design the project through a Qualifications Based Selection (QBS) process.

Congressman Rodney Davis Visits SIUE School of Pharmacy

21 April 2014, 4:48 pm

Gupchup-Gireesh_Davis-RodneyIllinois Congressman Rodney Davis (R, 13th District) visited the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville campus Monday, April 21. Davis toured the School of Pharmacy facilities in University Park.

School of Pharmacy Dean Gireesh Gupchup introduced Davis to Dr. Mark Luer, associate dean of Professional and Student Affairs, and Dr. Lakesha Butler, clinical associate professor in the Department of Pharmacy Practice. They showed Davis the School’s laboratories, classrooms and study areas.

“We truly appreciate Congressman Davis taking the time to see the innovative initiatives that are happening at the School of Pharmacy,” Gupchup said.  “We are grateful for the opportunity to discuss important issues with him and to be a resource for him in the future regarding health care and pharmacy issues.”

Davis took time at the end of the tour to visit with School of Pharmacy faculty, staff and students. He answered questions on a variety of topics including health care, agriculture, the Illinois budget deficit, and the challenges of governing in both Springfield and Washington, D.C.

Photo: SIUE School of Pharmacy Dean Gireesh Gupchup (left) visits with Congressman Rodney Davis.

SIUE Mourns Loss of School of Business Student Adam J. Collins, 1993-2014

21 April 2014, 9:58 am

Funeral arrangements are now set for SIUE sophomore Adam Joseph Collins, who died in an accident Saturday, April 19. He was Collins_Adam-Joseph21.

A Taylorville native, Collins was a sophomore in the School of Business. A complete obituary is available in the Taylorville Daily News.

Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m. on Saturday, April 26, at Sutton Memorial Home in Taylorville. Funeral services will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 27 at Sutton Memorial. Burial will be at Glen Haven Memorial Gardens in Taylorville.

Counseling services are available to students by calling 650-5666 or visiting the Counseling Health Services Office in the Student Success Center lower level adjacent to the Morris University Center.

Wabash Valley’s Daniela Rus Team Wins 2014 Regional Botball Tournament at SIUE

20 April 2014, 4:59 pm

Wagner-Sam_McNair-AmoniThe Daniela Rus Team from Wabash Valley in Terre Haute, Ind., won the 2014 annual Greater St. Louis Botball Tournament on Saturday, April 12 at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. Twenty-one teams competed in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom before a crowd of more than 150 throughout the day.

This year’s theme was assistive robotics. Building on last year’s theme of a Mars Sample Return Mission, the robots had to help Botguy recover from the long journey in space. The students built autonomous robots that traveled around a game board earning points with four goals to accomplish in two-minute rounds:

  • Assist Botguy with gross motor tasks by moving exercise equipment in bins
  • Hang hangers on various height racks
  • Remove items stored on shelves
  • Move an exercise bench over to a physical therapy area and place Botguy on the bench

“Each year, we try and define some unique, challenging tasks that allow both the novice teams and those with more experience to succeed by scoring in the competition,” said Gary Mayer, Ph.D., assistant professor of computer science in the SIUE School of Engineering and the event organizer. “This year, it was the hangers. Many teams answered the challenge and were consistently successful in earning points.

“As an educator, it’s a great thing to see, and everyone should be proud of what these students accomplished.”

Botball teams score equally in three categories of documentation, seeding rounds and the double elimination tournament. In each category, teams earn a score of 0.0 to 1.0. The Daniela Rus team won the competition with a total score of 2.930 out of the possible 3.0.

Documentation points are earned through a team’s online submission during the weeks leading up to the tournament and from a presentation that student team members must give at the tournament. Another Wabash Valley team, Maja Mataric, took first in documentation. Teams following closely behind included Belleville East High School and Daniela Rus.

Uncontested seeding rounds were held in the morning. Points earned determined the teams’ placement in the double-elimination bracket. One way to earn large points was for the robots to place hangers at the higher of two bars.

Daniela Rus took first in seeding rounds. St. Mary’s School in Edwardsville and another Wabash Valley team, Ada Lovelace, took second and third, respectively.

Daniela Rus beat Ada Lovelace in a dramatic final of the double-elimination event. In the semi-finals, Revitalization 2000 of St. Louis squared off against Daniela Rus. Each had one loss with the winner facing then undefeated Ada Lovelace, and Daniela Rus advanced.

In the first meeting against Ada Lovelace, Daniela Rus prevailed. The robots from both teams were high scorers, consistently able to place multiple hangers on the top rack.

With each team having one loss, it was winner take all as the two teams squared off again. With both teams going for the hangers at the center of the tournament table, Ada Lovelace got there first and was lining up its arm to hang its hangers when Daniela Rus arrived. The robots collided, knocking Ada Lovelace out of alignment, so the robot couldn’t successfully get hangers on the rack. Meanwhile, Daniela Rus was able to successfully get three hangers on the top rack, and advance to the winner’s circle.

Photo: Contestants Sam Wagner (left) and Amoni McNair at the 2014 annual Greater St. Louis Botball Tournament at SIUE.

SIUE Student AMA Chapter Receives Collegiate Community Service Award

20 April 2014, 4:19 pm


Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s Collegiate Chapter of the American Marketing Association (AMA) traveled to New Orleans April 10-12 for the 36th Annual AMA International Collegiate Conference (ICC). The SIUE Collegiate Chapter won the award for Outstanding Community Service.

AMA sent eight SIUE School of Business students, who are current or future executive board members, to learn from marketing professionals and present the organization’s accomplishments from the 2013-2014 academic year.

During the conference, SIUE Collegiate Chapter AMA President Kevin Buensuceso, a marketing major from Gurnee, and Vice President of Membership Megan Splittstoesser, a marketing major from Cerro Gordo, were invited to present at the conference. Their topic was improving membership recruitment and retention.

“The conference served as a platform to represent the SIUE School of Business chapter on a professional level,” said Buensuceso. “It was a great chance to showcase the accomplishments of our chapter and share our experiences.”

“We spent a lot of time this year developing a marketing campaign for a charity bike ride, Pax2Pax,” said Buensuceso. “Going into the conference, we were not expecting to win anything. Winning this award was definitely a pleasant surprise and something of which we are extremely proud.

“It says a lot about our organization that we can do things that not only help us professionally, but also allow us to give back to the community.”

Buensuceso said attending the conference helped everyone improve both personally and professionally. “We all learned so much and have already begun to implement things that we learned from the conference,” he said. “It gave us additional motivation to really become a top chapter.”

Associate Professor of Marketing and Faculty Advisor for AMA Edmund Hershberger, associate professor of marketing in the SIUE School of Business and faculty advisor for the AMA Collegiate Chapter, finds the conference to be extremely beneficial to the students.

“Attending the AMA International Collegiate Conference is the highlight of the year for the SIUE chapter of the American Marketing Association,” said Hershberger. “Not only are there a wealth of professional development and networking opportunities, but the students also benefit from hearing how other chapters become successful. They can bring back some really great ideas to make our chapter stronger.”

Photo:  (Top L-R) President Kevin Buensuceso, Justin Wood, Matt Jones, Adam Collins; (Seated, L-R) Christian Fawns, Megan Splittstoesser, Katelyn Salzman and Kate Jurovic.

SIUE Pharmacy Student 1 of 12 in U.S. to Receive Leadership Award

20 April 2014, 3:55 pm

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy student Kimberlee Kabbes has been selected as one of only a few Kimberlee Kabbes ASHP Student Leadership Award 04-21-14nationwide for her peer leadership and academic excellence.

The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists and the ASHP Research and Education Foundation have chosen Kabbes (Class of 2016) as one of 12 recipients across the U.S. for a 2013-2014 ASHP Student Leadership award. She received an ASHP drug information reference library and $2,000 in cash as a winner.

Kabbes, an Effingham native, is just beginning a one-year term of service as president of the School of Pharmacy’s local chapter of the Student Society of Health-System Pharmacy (SSHSP), which is affiliated with the national ASHP organization.

Kabbes earned a bachelor’s in kinesiology and health education from SIUE and a master’s in exercise physiology from the University of Kentucky. While at UK, she worked as a graduate assistant in the health and wellness program, and decided to pursue pharmacy.

While pursuing her Pharm.D., Kabbes works part-time as a pharmacy student in inpatient pharmacy at Missouri Baptist Medical Center, preparing medications in the IV room and delivering them as well.

“While my degree will be a Doctor of Pharmacy, I have a strong desire to pursue residency immediately after graduation with the goal of becoming a board-certified clinical pharmacist,” Kabbes said. “My dream job would be to work in a health system (hospital) environment with a focus on either cardiovascular medicine or oncology.”

“In all honesty, I didn’t expect to even come close to being selected as an award recipient,” said Kabbes, who is humbled by the award. “I thought applying would be a great learning experience. I’m grateful to School of Pharmacy Dean Gireesh Gupchup, Dr. Lisa Lubsch and Dr. Jingyang Fan for encouraging me to apply. I’m beyond honored.”

Lubsch is a clinical associate professor of the Department of Pharmacy Practice and nominated Kabbes for the award. Lubsch and Fan, also a clinical associate professor, are co-advisors to the SSHP chapter in SIUE’s School of Pharmacy.

“I chose to nominate Kimberlee out of nearly 300 students in our School because even though she is in year two of her four-year pharmacy curriculum, she has already accomplished so much during her career,” said Lubsch. “Kimberlee is actively involved in two leadership organizations on campus (SSHP and the American Pharmacists Association’s Academy of Student Pharmacists).

“She does a tremendous job of balancing this generous commitment of time and support with academic excellence and excelling in her part-time job in health system pharmacy. It’s rare to see someone who is so successful in all three of these areas.”

Lubsch, who served on the ASHP’s national award selection committee five years ago, said she became familiar with the rigorous application process as well as the caliber of candidates.

“Every year I consider which student has stood out the most from his or her peers and has done the most for our School,” Lubsch said. “Kimberlee is incredibly engaged in leadership for us and will continue as head of our ASHP student chapter during the next 12 months.

“The application process for this national award was extensive. We’re proud of Kimberlee. Once again, she is representing not only the SIUE School of Pharmacy, but also her peers and the profession as a whole.”

Fan agreed that the ASHP chose wisely in recognizing and rewarding Kabbes.

“We are the second-largest student organization in the School of Pharmacy,” said Fan. “Last year, we had nearly 100 members. Kimberlee has done a great job organizing the (annual) ASHP Clinical Skills competition practice in April. She was the one who encouraged students to sign up for the practice, and they benefitted greatly. I’m excited to see how well they will do this fall in the local competition.

“In addition, Kimberlee is a big advocate for SSHP. She has gotten many pharmacy students interested in running for SSHP office next year. I look forward to working more with Kimberlee as chapter president in the coming year.”

SIU Board of Trustees Holds SIUE 2014-15 Tuition Steady

17 April 2014, 6:34 pm

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville students will not see a tuition increase for the 2014-15 Academic Year. The SIU Board of Trustees today moved to maintain the 2013-14 tuition rate which works to the advantage of prospective students and their families. The board met on the Carbondale campus.

As a result, the annual tuition rate will remain $7,296 for new, in-state full-time undergraduate students (15 hours per semester) entering fall 2014. Undergraduate students currently in a guaranteed tuition plan will also see no increase in their annual tuition rate.

With new policy instituted at November’s board meeting, in-state tuition will also be available to entering freshman and transfer students, and master’s level graduate students from the regional states of Missouri, Arkansas, Iowa, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee and Wisconsin.

The Board also held firm on the following tuition rates:

• In-state, full-time students (12 hours per semester) in the SIUE Graduate School will continue to pay $6,702 in tuition annually.

• Annual tuition for in-state students in the School of Dental Medicine will remain $28,552 while School of Pharmacy in-state students will continue to pay an annual tuition of $22,764.

Finally, the proposals for the SIUE School of Engineering differential tuition rate and the alternate tuition rate for the dual diploma programs were deferred to the May 8 SIU Board of Trustees meeting.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottom land and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.


SIUE Annual Chancellor’s Walk, Wellness Fair Provides

16 April 2014, 5:08 pm


Faculty, staff and students participated in a brisk walk today at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville as part of SIUE’s annual Chancellor’s Walk.

View video here.

Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe joined about 50 people who left the SIUE Cougar statue and headed northeast to the Prairie Portal Garden at The Gardens at SIUE. The Chancellor’s Walk is held yearly in conjunction with the SIUE’s Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair.

“We value the health and well-being of our University community, and the Annual Chancellor’s Walk and the Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair are two great examples of that commitment,” said Furst-Bowe.

Participants trekked about 1.5 miles, according to Amanda Couch, fitness coordinator with Campus Recreation who spearheaded the organization of the event.


“Despite it being a bit breezy out today, we had a good turnout,” Couch said. “The Walk is always an opportunity to visit on a personal level with our chancellor.”

The brisk walk around campus in about 50-degree temperatures lasted about 20 minutes. Also participating remotely were the SIUE campuses in Alton and East St. Louis.

“I hope the Walk will encourage more people to exercise on a regular basis,” said Alex Holmes, graduate assistant in Campus Recreation. “And I hope those attending the Wellness Fair today will get some good information.”

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

“I’m back again this year,” said Lesemann. “I’ve been at SIUE for 19 years and have done the Walk the last 15. I enjoy the exercise, and it’s important for fitness and to keep in shape.”

Snagging the free Student Fitness Center membership this year was Robyn Courtway, of the Human Resources Department.


Enjoying the campus sights was another good reason to take a stroll, said Paul Fuligni, director of Facilities Management. “It’s a beautiful day, and we have a beautiful campus.”

The Walk is also good for “co-worker bonding,” said Rhonda Stone of Accounts Payable. Stone was keeping in step with friends, Jamie Fester of Accounts Payable and Gail Munneke of the Office of Research and Projects.

“It’s good to take a break from the office and get some socializing done outside,” said Bendex Stevenson, graduate assistant in Campus Recreation. “The Walk is a great stress reliever.”


Afterwards, many walkers took advantage of the host of services and information provided at the Annual Employee Benefits and Wellness Fair. Employees had a chance to speak with Benefits staff, state vendors and local businesses. Also available were health screenings, attendance prizes and free samples.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.

Photo Information:

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe walking with (from left to right) Jeffrey Brown, director of Planned Giving with the Office of University Advancement, and Rachel Stack, vice chancellor for University Advancement and CEO of the SIUE Foundation.

Leading the group of walkers Wednesday morning were (from left to right) Amanda Couch, fitness coordinator in Campus Recreation who spearheaded organization of the event; Alex Holmes and Mary Healey, both graduate assistants in Campus Recreation.

Greg Herbeck, plumber in Facilities Management, pets the therapy dog (a black Lab named Newman) as Jill Vallow watches.

Jeanette Parmenter, of Human Resources, gets a sample from Crazy Bowls and Wraps.


SIUE’s Search for Toto Lands on St. Louis Public Radio

15 April 2014, 7:12 pm

Director Peter Cocuzza is producing “The Wizard of Oz” this summer at SIUE’s Dunham Theater. His search for a dog to play Toto was featured on St. Louis Public Radio’s website. Writer Nancy Fowler posted the story Monday, April 14.

Acclaimed French Physicist to Lecture at SIUE April 24-29

15 April 2014, 11:23 am

Leoncini_XavierA world-renowned French physicist will share his expertise Thursday, April 24 with Southern Illinois University School of Engineering students and colleagues.

Xavier Leoncini, Ph.D., is a full professor at Air-Marseille University near Marseille, France. He will speak on “Self-regularization in Systems with Long-Range Interactions” from 2-3 p.m. in Engineering Building Room 0145. In layman’s terms, his presentation will focus on how one particle may affect another particle that’s a far distance away, causing a unique reaction.

A physics graduate of Ecole Normale Superieure in Paris, Leoncini spent four years with Professor George Zaslavsky at the Courant Institute at New York University as a post-doctoral student after receiving his Ph.D. from Air-Marseille University.

Leoncini is internationally regarded as an expert in nonlinear physics with applications in magnetized fusion plasma, nonlinear Hamiltonian Chaos, network dynamical systems and more.

The physicist’s path crossed with Albert Luo, Ph.D., professor in SIUE’s Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, in 2002 when Luo was asked to speak at Air-Marseille University’s international symposium. The two remained in contact through the years. At Luo’s invitation, Leoncini will visit SIUE after a speaking engagement at NYU.

“I was invited as a keynote speaker for Air-Marseille University’s chaos and transportation symposium 12 years ago,” said Luo, “on the topic, ‘Chaotic Motions in Resonant Separatrix Band (a topic within atomic physics).’ Such a motion has been observed in magnetized fusion plasma, which is one of Dr. Leoncini’s research specialties. Since that time, we’ve met at other conferences to discuss similar scenarios. We’re excited to welcome him to SIUE.”

Leoncini will give two additional lectures at SIUE during his visit:

  • “Particles Dynamics in Regular and Chaotic Flows, Part 1 – Particles Dynamics in Regular Flows,” will take place from 2-3 p.m. Friday, April 25 in Engineering Building Room 0145
  •  “Particles Dynamics in Regular and Chaotic Flows, Part 1– Particles Dynamics in Chaotic Flows,” will be from 9-10 a.m. Tuesday, April 29 in Engineering Building Room 0350

In attendance at the presentation will be graduate students and faculty from mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, physics, mathematics, theoretical chemistry and bioscience.

Members of the scientific community at large are welcome to attend Leoncini’s April 24 lecture. For more information, contact the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at (618) 650-2190.

SIUE Track and Field Celebrates Generous Gift

14 April 2014, 3:51 pm

Crystal S. Wenzel Track & Field suite naming ceremony 04-14-14The Crystal S. Wenzel Track and Field Suite was formally named and unveiled Monday, April 14 at the Charles and Mary Lukas Athletics Annex on the SIUE campus.

SIUE Intercollegiate Athletics celebrated the generous gift made to the track and field program in a ceremony followed by a luncheon in honor of Wenzel.

“I cannot even express how significant of an impact it makes on our program,” said SIUE Interim Head Coach Eileen McAllister. “It’s is very exciting to be naming the office suite after a former student-athlete and supporter of the program.”

Wenzel, originally from Salem, competed for SIUE track and field from 1997 to 2002. She is a former record holder in the pole vault and competed in hurdles events. Wenzel graduated from SIUE in 2002 with bachelors in both psychology and biological sciences.

“It is my hope that this contribution will help change the lives of other student-athletes coming to this University as the track and field program has done for me,” said Wenzel.

SIUE Director of Athletics Dr. Brad Hewitt said this is an historic moment for the department as the first suite-naming gift since the opening of the Lukas Annex.

“It will have a significant effect for track and field,” Hewitt said. “For the department in general, it’s fruition to a high level of recognition and respect from alumni and supporters.

“We thank the Wenzel family for their support and generosity to SIUE Athletics as the demonstrated affinity to our University is making a major impact on our student-athletes.”

McAllister said the coaching staff, in conjunction with the student-athletes, is always looking for opportunities to enhance their practice time and upgrade the student-athlete experience. This generous gift enables the program to focus on improving at all levels as it seeks to strengthen its position nationally at the NCAA Division I level.

Photo:  The Wenzel family (L-R) – Kathy, Mike, Leighton, Corey and Crystal.

SIUE School of Pharmacy Teams Visit Local Businesses and Perform 300 Blood Pressure Screenings

14 April 2014, 10:49 am

Patton-Hal_Donahue-Emily[1]The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy visited more than 40 local businesses during its “Roll Up Your Sleeves, Edwardsville” during Friday afternoon, April 11.

In a citywide wellness event, teams of 2-3 pharmacy students and one faculty pharmacist visited Edwardsville businesses and performed blood pressure screenings for more than 300 individuals. Twelve teams, which included 30 students and 10 faculty pharmacists, covered the city for five hours.

The program was performed in conjunction with the City of Edwardsville with the support of Mayor Hal Patton, who was also screened.

“Hypertension is an extremely prevalent disease, with nearly 90 percent of all Americans suffering from the disease at some point in their lives,” said. Dr. J. Christopher Lynch, SIUE professor of pharmacy practice. “Because hypertension typically has no symptoms, many working-age adults may have the disease without realizing it.”

Typical health fairs ask participants to come to the providers. This was the reverse as the providers went to the participants.

SIUE teams quickly and accurately measured the blood pressures of employees, who chose to participate, and then moved on to the next scheduled business location. In this manner, those too busy to attend screening events or their doctor’s office were able to know their blood pressure reading.

Photo:  SIUE School of Pharmacy student Emily Donahue checks City of Edwardsville Mayor Hal Patton’s blood pressure.

Fallahi Added to NCERC at SIUE Research Team

14 April 2014, 8:00 am

Parisa Fallahi NCERC 04-03-14The NCERC at SIUE has added another researcher to its roster with the addition of Dr. Parisa Fallahi, a postdoctoral fellow who specializes in ethanol co-products research.

“We are thrilled to welcome Dr. Fallahi to the NCERC’s research team,” NCERC Director John Caupert said. “Parisa’s wealth of expertise in the food and feed industries, both as a student and during her 10 years of industrial experience, enables her to immediately contribute to ongoing research and to open the door to new research opportunities at the Center.”

Fallahi earned a master’s in chemical engineering from Azad University in Tehran. She also earned a Ph.D. in biological sciences, and agricultural and biosystems engineering from South Dakota State University. She has authored five publications and a book chapter from her doctoral research.  Drs. Kasiviswanathan Muthukumarappan and Kurt Rosentrater, luminaries in the field of co-products research as well as collaborators in previous NCERC projects, have served as Fallahi’s mentors.

The Illinois Corn Marketing Board (ICMB) and SIUE partnered to provide seed funding for NCERC’s postdoctoral fellowship program following the Center’s recent breakthroughs in corn kernel fiber conversion and feedstock characterization.

“The NCERC continues to be an incredible asset to public and private researchers and the biofuels industry as a whole,” ICMB Chairman Larry Hasheider said. “From accelerating the commercialization of new technologies to increasing production efficiency and developing value-added co-products, the NCERC has defined the cutting edge of the biofuels research for more than a decade.

“We believe this investment will yield tremendous dividends for the biofuels and agriculture industries through continued research breakthroughs.”

Fallahi and Dr. Arun Athmanathan, the Center’s postdoctoral fellow specializing in biomass research, will work under Research Director Dr. Sabrina Trupia to extend the Center’s existing research and identify new areas of study.

In addition to immediately submitting multiple grant proposals with Trupia, Fallahi and Athmanathan have been invited to present posters at the Corn Utilization and Technology Conference (CUTC) June 2-4 in Louisville, Ky. Fallahi’s research will also be on display at the Distillers Grains Symposium May 14-15 in Dallas.

SIUE STEM Center Wins Best Paper Award at International Conference

13 April 2014, 4:10 pm

Sharon Locke STEM Director Graduate School Research 12_1_11 BillSouthern Illinois University Edwardsville STEM Center researchers received the Best Paper Award at the 6th International Conference on Computer-Supported Education. The event was held April 1-3 in Barcelona, Spain.

The conference is an annual event dedicated to discussion of new educational environments, best practices and case studies on innovative technology-based learning strategies, and the potential of e-learning. This year’s program included full papers, short papers and posters by educators in higher education and corporations representing 57 countries.

The SIUE paper, entitled “Using a Participatory Design Approach to Create and Sustain an Innovative, Technology-Rich STEM Classroom” examined the design and implementation of a high-technology high-school classroom for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.

The project emphasized the value of including all stakeholders in the design and ongoing assessment of a flexible, student-centered learning space. The paper’s authors are Mary Stephen, research professor, Sharon Locke, STEM Center director and associate professor, and Georgia Bracey, research associate.

The Best Paper Award is conferred to the authors(s) of a full paper presented at the conference, selected based on the best-combined marks of paper reviewing and presentation quality.

“We are honored to be recognized for this research effort, which assessed the opportunities and challenges of implementing technology in the classroom and identified strategies for overcoming hurdles,” said Locke. “Countries around the world are concerned about a shortage of STEM workers. This project provides a potential roadmap for others to follow to promote the development of STEM skills and career interests among younger students.”

According to Mary Stephen, the paper’s lead author, the topic’s international importance played a role in the paper’s selection for the award.

“We approached the problem from an international perspective, so that conference participants could see how our work related to their own experiences with technology in education,” Stephen said. “We did not have enough time to address the many audience questions during the formal presentation time, which points to the broad interest in the topic.”

Photo:  SIUE STEM Center Director Sharon Locke.

Lebanon Arts & Antiques Shop Showcases Dozens of Local Artisans

13 April 2014, 2:45 pm

TiadaghtonHouseHolly and Jim Lovell have successfully channeled their military family experience and love of art into a thriving startup business that showcases the talents of more than 65 area artists.

The Tiadaghton House (tie-a-dotten) features arts, antiques and American crafts. It is located within a two-story, turn-of-the-century red brick property in historic downtown Lebanon. The shop’s unique name stems from an Iroquois word for River of Pines and the small creek in central Pennsylvania near where Holly and Jim first met and grew up together.

Starting a business in a community where one lives is challenging enough. The Lovells upped the ante considerably by launching their new enterprise from the East Coast.

Jim, a career U.S. Air Force officer assigned to the Pentagon, noticed an ideal location for their future business had popped up for sale. The central Pennsylvania natives still owned a Metro East home from the period when Jim was stationed at Scott Air Force Base. With a strong desire to return to the area, the Lovells purchased the Tiadaghton House in late 2012 with a clear mission to be in business in less than 12 months.

Jim and Holly LovellJim’s military training, combined with Holly’s corporate experience, helped the couple devise a detailed action plan focused on a successful launch. The plan included finishing and renting the second floor as studio space to artists, who would conduct classes, attract customers, and compliment the arts and crafts on the first floor gallery.

Holly and Jim found three local artists who matched their requirements: Nancy Young Spence (clay) of Columbia, Becky Ripplemeyer (soaps) of Belleville and Alicia Scolarici (oil and acrylics) of O’Fallon. With signed leases, the Lovells covered a majority of their monthly operating cost. This enabled the couple to dictate their own terms and style for the first floor consignment space.

“Those months after we bought what is now Tiadaghton House were extremely fast-paced,” said Holly. “The five of us (Jim and Holly have school-age twin daughters and a son) were still living in Virginia. Much of the planning and preparation took place remotely.

“Even our children’s spring break was spent in Lebanon sitting down and interviewing artists, who had expressed an interest in joining us on a consignment basis. We spent many days and nights envisioning how to convert an empty house into a successful shop.”

The Metro East Small Business Development Center, headed by Director Patrick McKeehan, played a prominent role in providing business start-up expertise to the Lovells, according to Jim.

 “The SBDC shared detailed information on how to do business in Illinois, how to pay taxes, how to register our business, employee rules and other small business regulations,” Jim Lovell said. “Patrick met us here and walked page by page through our business model and business plan, listening and giving us lots of great advice.

“Maybe more than anything else, he gave me a lot of confidence that Holly and I were on the right track.”

The SBDC brought SIUE School of Business students into the shop to provide additional marketing recommendations.

“Patrick also connected us with a SIUE marketing research graduate student with new media expertise who critiqued our website,” Jim added. “All in all, working with SBDC staff was a highly satisfying experience. It has definitely contributed to our success thus far.”

Jim officially retired from the Air Force in late June 2013, and the Lovell family moved back to Illinois. Two months later, the Tiadaghton House opened its doors on Labor Day weekend.

Visitors can see and purchase affordably priced handcrafted creations, including photography, ceramics, watercolor, charcoal, woodworking, pottery, stained glass and jewelry along with many unusual antiques. Artists displayed at Tiadaghton House represent a healthy cross-section of the St. Louis region, with 90 percent of them based in studios on the Illinois side of the river.

“As a career military family, we’ve always been drawn to art, American art in particular, that is being created by local craftsmen and craftswomen,” said Holly. “Having been stationed throughout the country and overseas, we have a personal collection of art that’s very special to us. Each piece reminds us of where we’ve been and the closeness we share with fellow friends, who were also serving in the military.”

The Metro East SBDC is funded, in part, through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville to serve entrepreneurs and small business owners.  The SBDC and its partners positively impact the Metro East by strengthening the business community, creating and retaining new jobs and encouraging new investment. It enhances the region’s economic interests by providing one-stop assistance to individuals by means of counseling, training, research and advocacy for new ventures and existing small businesses. When appropriate, the SBDC strives to affiliate its ties to the region to support the goals and objectives of both the SIUE School of Business and the University at large.

To learn how the SBDC can help your small business, contact the Metro East SBDC at (618) 650-2929 or

Photo:  Holly and Jim Lovell.

Senior Assignments Boost SIUE Foundation Marketing Campaign

11 April 2014, 3:49 pm

Marketing campaign2

Marketing campaign

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville public relations students devised a successful, comprehensive direct-mail campaign that reached more than 40,000 alumni as part of their senior assignment.

SIUE has been featured in U.S.News & World Report among the nation’s top schools, including Brown, Princeton and Stanford for six-consecutive years for its Senior Assignment program. The Association of American Colleges and Universities has also recognized the SIUE program as a model capstone undergraduate experience for the nation’s institutions of higher learning.

Two teams of senior students organized public relations campaigns culminating with special events for the SIUE Foundation and the SIUE Student Foundation.

The Key PRecision team included the following students: Cassandra Bosomworth, Karissa Boozer, Kayla Halde, Erin Jackson and Eboni White. The students collaborated with Julie Babington, director of Annual Giving at the SIUE Foundation.

The team helped increase awareness about The Foundation among potential donors through a direct- mail campaign that involved letters, email blasts and social media messages. The campaign featured SIUE carpenter Eric Williams, who has worked on campus for 28 years and whose three children all graduated from SIUE and have successful careers.

The PR Image team was comprised of the following students: Page Whitehead, Doria Wormbly and Kyara Wright. They collaborated with Chandler Vandenberg, assistant director of Annual Giving at the SIUE Foundation, and helped spearhead the launching of the SIUE Student Foundation.

The Student Foundation is aimed at giving students enhanced opportunities to practice leadership and learn the value of giving back to the University community. The PR Image team made efforts to increase the membership of the group and also organized the SIUE Student Foundation Day. The March 26 event provided students not only information about the organization, but also a chance to participate in fun activities on the Quad such as mechanical bull riding, jousting, rock wall climbing, jump shot basketball and a pie eating contest.

Working to organize public relations campaigns culminating with special events, the two teams of seniors in public relations refined their skills that will make them competitive in the job market, according to Babington.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.

Photo Information:

Pictured are the Key PRecision team members with others.

From left to right are Kayla Halde, Erin Jackson, Karissa Boozer, Julie Babington, director of Annual Giving at SIUE Foundation; Dr. Sorin Nastasia, assistant professor in the Department of Speech Communication; Cassandra Bosomworth and Eboni White.

Pictured with Chandler Vandenberg, assistant director of Annual Giving at the SIUE Foundation, from left to right are Kyara Wright, Page Whitehead and Doria Wormbly.


SURS Pension Reform Presentation on Demand

11 April 2014, 9:26 am

The SURS Pension Reform Presentation at Dunham Hall from Wednesday, April 9 is now available on the Human Resources website under Benefits.

SIUE Participates in Lobby Day

10 April 2014, 2:58 pm

Lobby Day 2014[2]SIUE Student Government representatives traveled on Wednesday, April 2, to Springfield for Lobby Day. Approximately 30 SIUE students traveled to the Capitol where they met SIU President Glenn Poshard, SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe and students from SIUC.

Lobby Day is an annual event that allows students the opportunity to speak with state legislators and advocate for continued funding of Monetary Award Program (MAP) grants. MAP provides grants, which do not need to be repaid, to Illinois residents who attend approved Illinois colleges and demonstrate financial need.

Lobby Day also provides students with an opportunity to engage in the public process and embody the event’s slogan “be the change.”

Photo: SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe (second from left) stands next to Illinois State Representative Jerry Costello II, NCERC at SIUE Director John Caupert and assistant director of SIUE campus recreation Keith Becherer.

SIUE Collegiate Entrepreneurs Announce “The Other 40” Winners

10 April 2014, 2:36 pm

The Other 40 Entrepreneurship Competition 04-07-14Southern Illinois University Edwardsville students Amanda Arns, Sarah Lindsay, Tabitha Todd and Bryson Weaver were saluted Monday, April 7, as winners in “The Other 40” Entrepreneurship Competition. The Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization (CEO), an SIUE School of Business student organization, hosted the fourth annual pitch competition at the Morris University Center.

The competition gives students the opportunity to take their business ideas through all the stages necessary to become successful entrepreneurs. The 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.

Winners of the 2014 “The Other 40” competition:

• $5,000 for first place: Arns, a junior business student, for Q-Stars Gymnastics

• $2,500 for second place: Lindsay and Todd, pharmacy students, for Gateway Pain Solutions LLC

• $1,000 for third place: Weaver, a double major in marketing and entrepreneurship, for Ju Ju Brewing

Arns’ Q-Stars Gymnastics concept is a facility dedicated to helping families develop healthy lifestyles. Her goal is to provide a safe and clean environment for children and adults for recreational gymnastics and adult fitness all in one place.

“The competition put into perspective what it would take to make my idea a reality,” said Arns, who is pursuing a business administration degree with a specialization in entrepreneurship. “I have wanted to pursue Q-Stars Gymnastics since high school, and the competition was the extra push I needed to bring it all together.”

Finalists included:

• Natasha Kessler – Accelerando Music School

• Matthew Slightom, Cody Stewart and Thaddeus Nessel – College Cupholder

• Carissa Fowler – Al-Anon for All

• Christina Frisch – Flights and Fights

“The Other 40 gives students the chance to bring out their creative side,” said CEO Faculty Advisor and Associate Professor of Management Tim Schoenecker. “The prize money also leverages a student’s ability to actually pursue their business idea.”

Participants entering “The Other 40” competition utilize prep sessions to help build the skills necessary to succeed. Workshops prior to the competition provided instruction to students on developing financial projections, preparing a business plan and developing a persuasive pitch.

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 of judges.

After review of the participants’ business plans and elevator pitches, judges determined the top three contestants for the cash prizes and support packages to help pursue their business ideas.

The competition is supported by 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 continues to provide students with an opportunity to present their business idea in front of faculty, as well as, three non-faculty with reputable backgrounds.

Photo: Finalists of SIUE’s “The Other 40” competition (L-R): Natasha Kessler, Tabetha Todd, Christina Frisch, Sara Lindsay, Carissa Fowler, Amanda Arns, Thaddeus Nessel, Bryson Weaver, Cody Stewart, Matthew Slightom.

Montgomery Posts 900th Career Softball Victory

10 April 2014, 9:09 am


SIUE softball Head Coach Sandy Montgomery won the 900th game of her illustrious 26-year career Wednesday afternoon as the Cougars defeated Saint Louis 4-1 at the Billiken Sports Complex.

Montgomery is the 39th head coach in the history of NCAA softball to reach the 900-win plateau and has earned all of her wins at SIUE.  Her 900 wins rank 15th among active NCAA Division I head coaches.

“This is all about the coaching staffs and players that I’ve had over the years,” Montgomery said.  “The head coach gets the credit a lot of the time, but without everyone else contributing it wouldn’t be possible.  There’s been a lot of players who have put a lot of time and effort into this program.”

The Cougars (16-18) earned the victory on the back of a strong pitching performance from senior Erin Greenwalt, who allowed one run on four hits while striking out seven SLU batters.  It was the Glen Carbon native’s fifth complete-game victory of the season.

SIUE will play its second game in as many days today when it welcomes Bradley to Cougar Field for a 4 p.m. matchup.

SIUE Faculty and Staff Appreciation Day a Great Success

9 April 2014, 5:04 pm

Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social 04-09-14

More than 1,000 faculty and staff members of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville came out Wednesday to enjoy their Annual Appreciation Day.

The picnic lunch was held in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

The festivities included a free lunch and such fun activities as “green screen” photo stations and random drawings.

Photo Information:

SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe serves cookies.

Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social 04-09-14

SIU President Glenn Poshard and SIUE Human Resources Director Sherrie Senkfor help serve lunch.

Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social 04-09-14

Dr. Earleen Patterson, program director at SOAR, offers a sandwich to a staffer.

Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social 04-09-14

Displaying their eye wear are (left to right) Melissa Mace and Jennifer Coomer.

Faculty and Staff Appreciation Social 04-09-14

Enjoying the day are (left to right) Carol Dappert and Jennettie Lierman.


SIUE Student Appreciation Week Continues

9 April 2014, 4:35 pm

Student Worker Appreciation week Nicole Lynch 04-09-14

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville continued Student Appreciation Week on Wednesday.

A variety of celebrations and recognitions were held across the three campuses in honor of the work that students do for the University. The National Student Employee Association (NSEA) celebrates
National Student Employee Week from April 6-12.

Photo Information:

Student Nicole Lynch leads a campus tour.

Student Worker Appreciation week Michael Roche Margret Badugu 04-09-14

Michael Roche and Margret Badugu are pictured at the Morris University Center Welcome Desk.

Student Worker Appreciation week Sean Mclean 04-09-14

Student Sean Mclean is serving at Starbucks.

Student Worker Appreciation week Shontwon Morris 04-09-14

Shontwon Morris is serving at Kyna’s Grill.


Friends of Lovejoy Library Trivia Night Set for Friday, April 25

9 April 2014, 11:17 am

HG2The Friends of Lovejoy Library will host its inaugural Trivia Night from 7-10 p.m. Friday April 25. Lovejoy Library’s second floor will provide a unique setting for an entertaining evening.

The trivia competition will feature 10 rounds of general knowledge questions created by the Keepers of the Flame of Knowledge. A silent auction and attendance prizes consisting of a wide range of signed books and magazines will be available.

Two signed books that will be in the silent auction are Suzanne Collin’s The Hunger Games and George R. R. Martin’s A Game of Thrones.” View the catalogue here.

“We expect this first Trivia Night experience to be fun, engaging and entertaining for everyone who participates,” said Kyle Moore, Lovejoy Library director of development. “This event benefits every unit on campus as it allows the library to purchase new materials that benefit our students’ academic experience.”

Tables of eight can be purchased for $150, and individuals may attend at $20 per person. There will be cash prizes and trophies for the wining team.

Attendees are allowed to bring their own snacks. Soft drinks and water will be provided, and a cash bar will be available.

To reserve your team’s table, and print a registration page, please visit the Library’s Trivia Night website.

Friends of Lovejoy Library membership is open to anyone who wishes to assist SIUE students to receive the greatest educational information possible. Since 1965, the Friends have significantly contributed to the quality of Library programs through the establishment of endowed funds, and the purchase of books, materials and equipment. These efforts enhance the Library’s collections and transform information delivery to students. An annual Friends membership is $35.

For more information, contact Moore at (618) 650-2714 or

SIUE Recognizes Yas’Meen Bonner as Student Employee of the Year

8 April 2014, 1:37 pm

Yas'Meen Bonner

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville is proud of its student workers and has named Yas’Meen Bonner as the 2014 Student Employee of the Year.

“Yas’Meen has proven herself to be an invaluable resource to our staff,” said James Davis, of Textbook Services, who nominated Bonner.

Bonner, a junior in the SIUE School of Business, is a student floor supervisor in Textbook Services. She supervises approximately 15 students in training on such things as shelving, shifting of textbooks and customer service. She has worked with Textbook Services for nearly two years.

“I am completely shocked about my nomination for such an honor,” said Bonner. “I love what I do, and I love that I am in the position to do it. I enjoy everyone that I work with and work for. I could not ask for a better work environment on campus.”

“Yas’Meen has a strong work ethic, excels in a team environment and can be counted on to do her best every time she walks through the door,” Davis continued. “Being such a well-rounded person, Yas’Meen has made several important contributions to the department. She has gone well beyond the expectations of what is expected of someone in her position.

“She developed a new training program for semester shifting of textbooks, which resulted in less staff being utilized while also accomplishing the task in a shorter time. She has taken on increasingly more responsible roles earning a promotion to Student Floor Supervisor, the first this department has ever had.”

The Student Employee of the Year first runner-up was Timothy Wittenberg of Troy, who works for Lovejoy Library in Information Services. The second runner-up was Kaitlyn Allen of Alton, who works in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics within the College of Arts and Sciences.

The presentations came as The National Student Employee Association (NSEA) celebrates National Student Employee Week from April 6-12.

According to the NSEA website, “Each year colleges and universities across the country recognize the importance of the student work experience during National Student Employment Week. Student employment offers students career-enhancing opportunities, the ability to develop skills relevant in any career and better preparation for the job market upon graduation.”

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.

Photo Information: Yas’Meen Bonner, left, and SIUE Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe


University Housing Staff Member Named ACPA Outstanding Graduate Student

7 April 2014, 2:36 pm

Greguska head shot

A Southern Illinois University Edwardsville student garnered national accolades from the American College Personnel Association and received the Outstanding Graduate Student Staff Award.

Clarissa Greguska, assistant community director in University Housing, recently received the ACPA award. This national honor is presented to a graduate student who exemplifies excellent leadership and academic abilities in housing and residence life.

Alexandria White, Greguska’s supervisor and community director for the Cougar Village 400-Side, nominated her. Greguska’s nomination highlighted her contributions to the Family Resource Center, and her efforts in connecting the curriculum in her Art Therapy degree with her assistantship in University Housing.

“As an art therapist, Clarissa intertwines her love of art and academics to create intentional programming for children at the Family Resource Center,” said White. “Her academic determination has allotted her many successes, which include being selected as the chair for the 2012 Student Art Therapy Association Fall Conference.”

Greguska’s nomination was also supported by Sarah Kirkpatrick, assistant director for Cougar Village Apartments. “In addition to educational and intentional programs, Clarissa (of Big Bend, Wisc.) has been very intentional in how she and the staff hold the children accountable for their behavior and choices,” said Kirkpatrick. “She utilizes concepts from the classroom within her Art Therapy program and ensures that children receive positive reinforcement and constructive methods for making better choices.”

The Outstanding Graduate Student is also credited for developing Family Week, a week-long initiative that partners children with mentors. The purpose is to learn about teamwork and cooperation while completing a series of projects.

The ACPA Outstanding Graduate Student award was presented at the 2014 ACPA Annual Convention in Indianapolis. American College Personnel Association (ACPA), headquartered in Washington, D.C. at the Nation Center for Higher Education, is the leading comprehensive student affairs association that advances student affairs and engages students for a lifetime of learning and discovery.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.


SIUE – City of Edwardsville Community Destination Group Comes Together

5 April 2014, 3:37 pm

The Edwardsville City Council approved the appointments in mid-March of 11 individuals to the new Edwardsville-SIUE Community Destination Group. Edwardsville Intelligencer writer Matt Winte wrote about group’s make-up in a story posted April 5. Representing the chancellor’s office, executive assistant Kim Durr leads the SIUE contingent.

Three SIU Dental Medicine Students Grab Research Awards

4 April 2014, 3:35 pm

Hawkins_AlexSouthern Illinois University’s School of Dental Medicine is once again in the national spotlight as three students have captured national research awards.

A student research fellowship from the American Association for Dental Research belongs to  Casey Ritchhart, first-year SDM student. Ritchhart, who is mentored by Anita Joy, BDS, Ph.D., assistant professor and section head of anatomy, is one of only 21 individuals in the country to receive this fellowship.

“I’m truly thankful to have been given this opportunity,” said Ritchhart, whose topic of research is gingival overgrowth. “A significant portion of transplant patients, epileptics and hypertensive patients will develop GO. Currently there is not a viable, non-surgical treatment for this disfiguring condition. This study will provide the groundwork in understanding how ultraviolet photo treatment can alter gingival overgrowth.”

Ritchhart has worked with Joy since 2012. The AADR award totals $2,100 along with $600 additionally to cover Ritchhart’s travel expenses for presenting her findings at a future AADR conference.

“The SIU School of Dental Medicine has a rich history of developing exemplary clinicians, and often a critical part of that journey is being involved with research,” Joy said. “Students involved with research projects go the extra mile to make time out of their incredibly busy academic schedules. They are truly deserving of recognition.”

SDM third-year student Alex Hawkins won third place in the Dentsply Caulk research competition at the 43rd annual meeting and exposition of the American Association for Dental Research. Hawkins’ mentor is M. Jane Gillespie, Ph.D., professor, section head of microbiology and former director of research. The National Student Research Group sponsored the competition with support from Dentsply, a U.K.-based dental supplies manufacturer.

Hawkins’ poster, entitled “Comparative Disinfection of Enterococcus faecalis Loaded Root Canals,” concentrated on research specific to endodontic irrigants.

“The research that was presented at the competition, involved comparing different root canal irrigants based on how well they cleaned the canal and killed the bacteria,” Hawkins said. “My background as a biology major at SIUE and my previous research, which involved microbiology, initiated my interest in the topic, as well as the importance of successful root canal treatments in the field of dentistry.”

Several SIU SDM students have recently been awarded national and statewide awards for their research, including Patrick Farrow, a third-year SDM student. He has received an award for his presentation at a recent dental conference. His mentor is Kevin Rowland, Ph.D., associate professor, section head of physiology and director of research in the Department of Applied Dental Medicine.

Gillespie said she is extremely proud of these students.

“One has to actually be in dental school to realize how time consuming the curriculum is,” said Gillespie. “Students like Alex, who can find time to not only do the research, but also to successfully compete for national and international recognition, are exceptional.

“We are fortunate at the SDM to have administrative support for a research infrastructure that encourages a dedicated group of research faculty to find and mentor these exceptional students. It has been a pleasure working with Alex, because she is dedicated to excellence in whatever she does.”

Photo:  SIU SDM third-year student Alex Hawkins.

April Showers to Bring a Bounty Harvest to SIUE Student Gardens

4 April 2014, 3:26 pm

Community Student Garden Gardens sustainability Wolf Mark Veverka Jessica Urbonas Melisa Hillman Jaqueline Norfolk 03-28-14

Right now, only dirt can be seen on the one-quarter acre of land for students at The Gardens at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

By next month, sprouting up will be rows of bush beans, green beans, English peas, kale, spinach, sugar beets, potatoes, cantaloupe, watermelon and more, according to Wolf-Mark Veverka, president of Natural Connections, the SIUE student group which started the gardens for their peers. Veverka is also president of SIUE’s Student Organization for Sustainability (SOS).

“We are a student sustainability group who want to reconnect people with their food,” said Veverka, a junior majoring in biology/ecology/evolution and environment. “When people grow their own food in a garden, it offers better nutrition and helps fight against childhood obesity. It helps in many sustainable ways for people, the environment and the economy.”

Melissa Hillman

Veverka and Jessica Urbonas spearheaded creating the new sustainability student group in the fall of last year. Urbonas, also a junior majoring in biology/ecology/evolution and environment, is vice president of Natural Connections and a member of SOS.

It was SOS members who decided to actualize the idea of a student orchard at SIUE, according to Veverka. Other SOS members instrumental in starting the garden include John Shaw, Valnor Scerri and Kaytlin Patterson.

“In the last couple of years, many international students and others have come to SOS wanting to know where they could grow their own food,” Veverka said. “If you live on campus and have no transportation, it can be difficult getting to a grocery store.”

Anyone can join Natural Connections, declares Urbonas. The requirement is that a person has to work, if they’re going to eat from the garden. The Gardens at SIUE has provided the land and tools. Providing critical, key initial assistance has been Dan Mueller, gardens grounds keeper.

Currently, membership has reached nearly 100, including 83 students. Some of the members are people from surrounding communities. Business meetings for Natural Connections are held monthly. The next session is scheduled at 5 p.m., Thursday, May 1 in the Morris University Center International Room.

Jackie Norfolk and Mark Veverka

Saturday workshops are also conducted where members learn to grow food, work the garden and other things pertaining to gardening, food and nutrition.

“My mother is going to do a class on canning,” said Urbonas, who was raised on a 40-acre organic farm in Shipman with nine of her siblings. The time and date has not yet been determined.

Members can get their hands dirty in their designated plot anytime during operating hours for The Gardens at SIUE, Urbonas said. However, group members will be on hand to answer questions as they work the garden from 8 a.m.-noon each Wednesday.

For additional information or to join Natural Connections, contact Veverka at or Urbonas at

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000.

Photo Information:

Wolf-Mark Veverka, president of Natural Connections, moves a bale of hay for the Students Garden

Melissa Hillman, Natural Connections member, carries a bale of hay to the garden plot.

Jackie Norfolk, Natural Connections member, rolls some fencing wire.


SIUE East St. Louis Center Begins Celebrations with a Gospel Show

4 April 2014, 2:56 pm

Discovery Center kids

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville East St. Louis Center kicked off its East St. Louis birthday celebration last night with a Gospel Show.

A capacity crowd of approximately 250 enjoyed performances by:

• SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School Gospel Choir

Charter School girls

• The Discovery Center for Little Scholars Head Start class

• Anointed Hands Mime Ministry of the New Shining Light Church in Venice

• SIUE Gospel Choir

Discovery Center child

The celebration will continue tonight with a Tribute to Rhythm and Blues at 7 p.m. The show will spotlight Brock Walker and his Earth, Wind and Fire Tribute Band.

Set for Wednesday, April 9 at 7 p.m. is “And the Verdict is. . . . A Campus Response to the Trayvon Martin Case.” The play will be presented by the SIUE Black Theater Workshop.

All events will take place in the Multi-Purpose Room in Building D at the East St. Louis Higher Education Campus, 601 James R. Thompson Blvd.

All performances are free and open to the public. However, due to limited seating, admission tickets are required. To reserve a ticket, contact Ginny Burkhart at 618-482-6904 or

SIUE East St. Louis Center: With a focus on empowering people and strengthening communities, the SIUE East St. Louis Center is dedicated to improving the lives of families and individuals—from pre-school through adult—in the Metro East region. The Center offers programs that give the community renewed hope and an opportunity to reach educational, career and life goals. It does so by providing comprehensive programs, services and training in the areas of education, health, social services and the arts.

Photo Information:

The Discovery Center for Little Scholars performs “When the Spirit of the Lord.” Students are from the classes of Dana Jackson, Krista Cawvey and Novia Banks. Pictured from left to right are Za’Riyah Hinton, Diamond Hamilton, Armani Eaton, Isaiah Johnson, Kendon Teer, Damir Smith-Mckenzie and Zamiyah Willis.

Performing the musical number, “The Lord is High Above the Heavens” are SIUE East St. Louis Charter High School students from left to right: Clara Williams, a senior; and DeAmbra Loveless, a sophomore.

Stephanie Howard is seen singing with her Discovery Center for Little Scholars class.



SIUE Science Building West Attains LEED Silver Certification

4 April 2014, 2:14 pm

SciBldgFall2013Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s $52 million Science Building West has received the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) stamp of approval as a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Silver-level project for its energy-friendliness.

LEED Silver is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices. To receive LEED certification, building projects satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification. Prerequisites and credits differ for each rating system, and design teams choose the best fit for their project.

The new facility, completed last fall, is the fourth building on SIUE’s campus to be certified by the USGBC at this point with more certifications forthcoming, according to Rich Walker, assistant vice chancellor for administration.

“When we finish all of our LEED review processes, we will have a total of seven LEED-certified buildings on campus,” Walker said. “Our new Art and Design Building, the Lucas Athletics Annex (Vadalabene Center addition), a new apartment building in Cougar Village and now the Science Building West have attained this certification based on energy efficiency.

“Future certified buildings include the Engineering Annex, the new Dental Lab and the soon-to-be renovated Science Building East.”

The newly USGBC-certified science facility provides space for research and teaching laboratories in a leading edge learning environment. Three departments, chemistry, biology and environmental sciences, are housed in the 136,000-square foot building.

“Science labs are a challenge to get certified because of the mechanical requirements,” Walker added. “LEED requires ultra efficiency yet labs are running all the time. In addition, the office components need to operate on a separate system than the labs, adding complexity to the overall design.”

Dennis Lammert, senior vice-president at St. Louis-based Hastings+Chivetta Architects Inc. and project architect, said the LEED-certified building offers its occupants an abundance of natural light, a state-of-the-art indoor air quality system, solar roof panels, low water use plumbing fixtures and sustainable design features.

Because it is a teaching facility, Science Building West’s design includes a “dashboard” or monitor on the wall where students can gauge how efficiently the building is operating.

“SIUE students have been drawn to the study areas, which are located throughout the building,” Lammert said. “These areas are used for student-to-student and student-to-faculty discussions. Since students and faculty first moved into the new science building, they continue to be impressed and delighted with the design and functionality.”

Bill Retzlaff, Ph.D, associate dean of arts and sciences and chairman of the Department of Biological Sciences, Environmental Sciences Program, agreed that SIUE faculty and students are overwhelmingly pleased with the new facility, especially the labs.

“It’s an outstanding research facility,” said Retzlaff. “I have a research lab in the new building. In my perception, the thing that really has enriched our learning experience the most is the laboratory space.

“In the old building, we struggled to find opportunities for students to work with other students. This new building provides exceptional hands-on teaching outside of the classroom as well as student engagement. It has been elevated to a level we’ve not seen before,” he added.

Serving as sustainable design consultant on the project was Hellmuth & Bicknese Architects, L.L.C. of St. Louis.

A $32 million renovation of SIUE’s original Science Building East began this spring. The project is reconfiguring 80,000 square feet for offices, classrooms and laboratories. It also includes upgrading the climate control, plumbing, mechanical and electrical systems, and replacing the large glass windows with energy-efficient designs.

The physics, mathematics and statistics departments will remain in Science Lab Building East. The additional room and rehabilitation work, according to Walker, will reduce overcrowding in laboratories and growing pains experienced by the University in recent years.

During the past five years, SIUE has completed more than half of a $310 million construction and infrastructure improvement program. The plan includes accommodating the University’s growth, providing critical updates and upgrades and bringing the latest technological capabilities to its students, staff and faculty.

SIUE Club Cricket Team Wins Veritis Cup

4 April 2014, 11:56 am

CricketTeamThe SIUE club cricket team won the Veritis Cup March 13-14 in Texas. The event is considered the national championship of club cricket. The title came with a $1,500 prize.

In the first round, defeated Texas A&M-Kingsville by 10 wickets, University of North Texas-Arlington by 25 runs and the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor by 30 runs.

During the Super Six Stage, SIUE dispatched the University of North Texas by 7 wickets and the University of Illinois-Springfield by 40 runs.

In the semi-final, SIUE eliminated North Texas Denton by 5 wickets. In a rematch for the championship, SIUE topped UIS by 7 runs.

Electrical Engineering graduate student Vamsi Krishna Pavuluri was named Most Valuable Player.

Other members of the team included:

Ahmed Ali                                        Vijay Kumar Chillamcharla               Veerangarajan Chiranjeevi Raghu

Naishadh Gopisetty                        Rohit Yadav Kalva                               Ashwin Kothuri

Shiva Sagar Reddy Manga            Rakesh Medagoni                                 Naga Venkata Vikas Penugonda

Anirudh Tadikonda                        Nishanth Reddy Vadakala                  Karthik Yenumula

The Veritis Cup is sponsored by Veritis Solutions, which is headquartered in Irving, Texas.

The Missouri Youth Cricket Association (MYCA) will host a 3-three day camp on the SIUE Cricket Ground during April. The sessions will run from 6-7 p.m. on consecutive Mondays beginning April 14. The camp is designed for children ages 7-12 and will include introduction to cricket and basic techniques. All equipment will be provided. Visit for registration information or contact

Photo (L-R):  Karthik Yenumula, Nishanth Reddy Vadakala, Naga Venkata Vikas Penugonda, Vijay Kumar Chillamcharla, Asst. Director of Campus Recreation Keith Becherer, Ahmed Ali, Chancellor Julie Furst-Bowe, Murali Krishna Reddy Basupalli, Veerangarajan Chiranjeevi, Rohit Yadav Kalva, Rakesh Medagoni, Anirudh Tadikonda, Vamsi Krishna Pavuluri.  Not pictured: Ashwin Kothuri, Shiva Sagar Reddy Manga, Raghu Naishadh Gopisetty.

Albert Luo Receives 2014 Distinguished Research Professor Award

4 April 2014, 11:28 am

Mechanical Engineering Albert Luo 03-31-14Dr. Albert Chao-Jun Luo, professor in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering in the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Engineering, recently was named the 2014 recipient of the Distinguished Research Professor Award.

The award is an academic rank rewarding faculty members who have demonstrated outstanding and sustained contributions to research and creative activities. Luo will be recognized with the rank of SIUE Distinguished Research Professor for the duration of his tenure at SIUE.

“Luo’s dedication to the advancement of his field shows a tireless motivation to achieve excellence,” said Dr. Jerry Weinberg, associate provost for research and dean of the Graduate School.

Luo has achieved international recognition in the field of nonlinear dynamics with his theory of flow barrier vector fields. His colleagues have credited him with developing methods of calculating chaotic motion, as well as pioneering theories of dynamic physical changes that were previously unexplained.

In his own production, Luo’s work in nonlinear dynamics has been published approximately 125 times in refereed journals. He has also published 12 research monographs and more than 30 pieces in proceedings, special issues, chapters and edited books. External sponsors such as the National Science Foundation and local industrial partner Amsted Rail have funded his work.

Luo currently serves as an editor for four prominent journals in his field, as well as a book series. He also serves on editorial boards and various technical committees. This is not to mention the professional symposiums, tracks and conferences he has organized and chaired, which currently number over forty.

As a School of Engineering colleague noted, “His wide range of activities has made our mechanical engineering program better known externally, and has promoted the image of SIUE at the national and international level.”

In the midst of his achievements, Luo has not neglected his students. Colleagues testify that Luo instills in his students a confidence, motivation and respect for learning to match his own deep respect for education.

SIUE Adds Master’s in College Student Personnel Administration

3 April 2014, 3:41 pm

The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Education will introduce a master’s in education in College Student Personnel Administration for fall 2014. The program will be housed in the Department of Educational Leadership’s existing Educational Administration program.

The new program will serve students holding a bachelor’s with a career interest in student personnel administration. The Illinois Board of Higher Education approved it Tuesday, April 1.

“The School of Education is extremely enthusiastic about the addition of this excellent program, which builds on the strengths of the faculty and addresses a very specific need in the region,” said Bette Bergeron, dean of the School. “By combining cutting-edge research and applied coursework with practicum experiences, students will have the opportunity to work directly in the field and with other professionals to develop critical leadership skills to enhance their careers in higher education.”

The program is designed to prepare students to succeed in entry- to mid-level student affairs or higher education administration positions in two-year or four-year public and private institutions. The program was developed in keeping with the standards and guidelines for master’s level Student Affairs Professional Preparation Programs, as set forth by the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education.

“This high quality program in student affairs administration will be an outstanding program, because we have tenured and tenure-track faculty teaching the first two semesters of courses and beyond,” said Laurie Puchner, professor and chair of the Department of Educational Leadership. “For example, one full-time member of the department, who will be teaching one of the Fall 2014 courses, holds a Juris Doctor in addition to a Ph.D. and specializes in higher education and the law, higher education administration and the history of higher education.”

The 36-hour program includes 27 hours of coursework in college student personnel administration, six hours of practicum and three hours of final research project. The program will be able to be completed with two years of part-time study.

Coursework will include the following areas:

  • History, philosophy and organization of higher education
  • Diversity in higher education
  • College student learning and development
  • Individual and group dynamics
  • Research methods in higher education
  • Assessment and evaluation in student affairs
  • Leadership and administration in higher education
  • Legal and ethical issues in student affairs

“In placing students in practicum assignments, the department will utilize resources in institutions of higher learning in southwestern Illinois and throughout the St. Louis metropolitan area,” Puchner said. “These students will also be in a unique position to access the resources of community colleges located within a short drive of the SIUE campus.”

The program will be delivered primarily in the evenings, so that students who work full-time will be able to attend the program. The goal is 25 enrolled students for the first cohort beginning in September.

For more information, contact Jeff Chitwood in the Office of Admissions at or 618-650-2741.

SIUE Pharmacy Students Recognized for Patient Counseling

3 April 2014, 2:10 pm

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy students Jessica Kerwin and Emily Donahue have won second place in a national patient counseling competition.

The students competed at the Student National Pharmaceutical Association’s regional meeting held March 14-16 in Columbus, Ohio. Kerwin serves as a delegate for the SNPhA’s local chapter.

A total of 19 teams across seven states in competed from SNPhA Regions 3, 4 and 5, including Illinois and Missouri. The crux of the fast-paced, live competition was to read a description of the acting patient’s condition and then quickly advising him/her on prescription medications.

“It was the fastest 10 minutes of our lives,” said Donahue. “Jessica and I listened to the patient (for five minutes) to learn what his condition was along with the medications he was currently taking and the side effects he was experiencing.

“Then we had just five minutes to walk through those issues with him, offering counseling as to what he might consider doing regarding his condition.”

Although the competitors had access to three different drug information booklets, Donahue said student competitors really had to know the information, because there wasn’t much time to use the guides.

“Our patient, who was in reality the Region 3 SNPhA facilitator, had multiple medical issues, so it was definitely a challenge to address them in the minutes we were allotted.”

Through collaboration with other member universities and chapter delegates at the regional level, Kerwin presented four resolutions to the SNPhA national chapter’s bylaws. All four were accepted at the region’s conference and will be reviewed. They will be voted upon at the SNPhA national meeting in July before being added to the national bylaws.

Lakesha Butler, clinical associate professor in SIUE’s Department of Pharmacy Practice and SNPhA faculty advisor, said both students are preparing to begin clinical rotations and will earn their doctorate of pharmacy degree next May.

“I am extremely proud of Emily and Jessica and all the other students who attended SNPhA’s regional conference,” said Butler. “They both have such a zeal and passion for SNPhA and the pharmacy profession. Emily has taken the chapter to new heights under her leadership as president.”

Although SIUE’s SNPhA chapter has always had a presence at the regional and national meetings, Butler added, this past year has been extraordinary.

“The students have represented the School in a way like never before,” Butler said. “SIUE is now nationally recognized for its stellar students within the national organization of SNPhA and the students’ noteworthy service to the community.

“Achievements such as this, along with the chapter’s first-place win last year in the national clinical skills competition, exponentially raises the bar of our national image. It also reflects our continued success as a school focused on developing future leaders in pharmacy.”

SIUE Arts & Issues Carville-Gonzales Debate Postponed

3 April 2014, 9:42 am

Tonight’s Arts and Issues debate between James Carville and Alberto Gonzales has been postponed.  The event was scheduled for 7:30 p.m. in the Morris University Center Meridian Ballroom.

Because of travel issues related to this morning’s severe weather and the forecast for additional severe weather to move thr0ugh the area this evening, the event is postponed and is expected to be rescheduled at a later date.

All tickets will be honored for the rescheduled date.  SIUE apologizes for any inconvenience, but the safety and well being of our participants, guests, students, faculty and staff are always our primary concern.

For more information, please check the Arts and Issues website or call the box office at 618-650-5774.

SIUE Closes Out its Spring International Speaker Series on April 7

3 April 2014, 9:35 am


The story of one woman’s captivity in Iran is part of the topic to be presented at the last Spring International Speaker Series on the campus of Southern Illinois University Edwarsdville.

Dr. Haleh Esfandiari, of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C., will speak from 10-10:50 a.m. Monday, April 7 in the Morris University Center Hickory-Hackberry Room.

Esfandiari will present “Winners or Losers: Women in the Arab Spring.” She closes a host of varied and interesting speakers who were part of the SIUE International Speaker Series.

Esfandiari is an Iranian-American academic and director of Middle East Programs at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. Her areas of expertise include Middle Eastern women’s issues, contemporary Iranian intellectual currents and politics, as well as democratic developments in the Middle East.

She was detained in solitary confinement at Evin Prison in Tehran, Iran from May 8-August 21, 2007. She wrote of this tumultuous time in, “My Prison, My Home: One Woman’s Story of Captivity in Iran.”

She comes from a Shia Muslim family and grew up in Iran. She had a career as a journalist and taught at the College of Mass Communication in Tehran. She was also deputy secretary general of the Women’s Organization of Iran. She left the country with her husband and daughter in 1979 because of the Iranian Revolution. She has lived in the U.S. since 1980 and has a dual U.S.-Iranian citizenship.

In the U.S., Esfandiari taught courses on Persian language, contemporary Persian literature and the women’s movement in Iran at Princeton University from 1980-1994. She was the recipient of a highly coveted MacArthur Foundation Fellowship and a fellow at the Wilson Center from 1995-96. Esfandari has served as director of the Middle Eastern Program at the Wilson Center since 1997.

Students, faculty and staff are welcome. Classes wishing to attend should contact International Programs at (618) 650-3278, or (618) 650-3758,

Dr. Ron Schaefer is director of the SIUE Center for International Programs.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville provides students with a high quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live. Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottomland and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of nearly 14,000. 

Photo Information: Dr. Haleh Esfandiari, of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

SIUE School of Pharmacy Students Educate more than 9,000 Grade Schoolers

2 April 2014, 4:45 pm

Legate-Kayci_Probst-AmySouthern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy students participated in service learning projects in March resulting in the education of more than 9,000 grade school children in Madison and St. Clair counties.

Eighty first-year (P1) pharmacy students participated by creating and communicating nutrition-based wellness messages for children enrolled in preschool through third grade.

Since 2006, P1 pharmacy students have participated in similar service learning spring projects. The number of grade school children impacted has grown exponentially.

“We’ve broken records this year with the number of grade school children we have reached,” said Dr. Kate Newman, clinical assistant professor of Pharmacy Practice and coordinator of Introductory Pharmacy Practice Experience (IPPE). “Our P1 students educated 9,034 grade school children about proper nutrition and the importance of physical activity.”

The pharmacy students went into the community in two-person teams and gave 10-12 presentations per team.

SIUE School of Pharmacy service learning combines classroom instruction with community service to address community wellness needs. Learning is enhanced through the encouragement of civic responsibility and community action, as well as through the promotion of cooperation and teamwork.

Photo: Kayci Legate (L) and Amy Probst (R), SIUE School of Pharmacy students.

SIUE’s Griffin Recognized on Congress Floor for National Award

2 April 2014, 3:25 pm

GriffinAndrew_smOn Tuesday, April 2, U.S. Representative Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) recognized SIUE’s Dr. Andrew Griffin for his community service and work with the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA).

Griffin is an assistant professor in the School of Nursing, director of nurse anesthesia and interim chair for the Department of Primary Care and Health Systems Nursing.

He will receive the 13th annual Daniel D. Vigness Federal Political Director Award from AANA in Washington, D.C., on Mon., April 7, during the Mid-Year Assembly.

View his recognition on Youtube.

SIUE Engineering Students Claim 4th Place in International Competition

2 April 2014, 11:36 am

Six Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Engineering construction management students successfully competed at the American Concrete Institute (ACI) Spring 2014 Convention in Reno, Nev., March 27. The SIUE team finished fourth in the Concrete Bowling Ball competition and 11th place overall.

SIUE competed against 31 teams from Canada, Ecuador, Mexico, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Each team entered bowling balls made of concrete. The balls were evaluated on the mass and diameter, as well as toughness, deformation and bowling performance.

In addition to their strong performance in competition, the SIUE ACI chapter accepted the 2013 Excellent University Award, the highest award for ACI Student Chapters. The chapter earned the award for its outstanding student and faculty involvement in ACI committees, meetings, events and community outreach.

Construction management seniors Tony Probst of Dieterich, Newton’s Derek Casey, and Justin Huelsmann of Highland, along with civil engineering senior Andrew Wilder of Effingham, led the chapter. Juniors Ryan Toennies of Aviston and Blake Grinestaff from Effingham round out the team. The faculty advisor is Dr. Anne Werner, assistant professor in the Department of Construction.

“The SIUE ACI chapter continues to demonstrate excellent teamwork and performance in international competition,” said Dr. Chris Gordon, School of Engineering associate dean and chair of the Department of Construction.  “Dr. Werner and the ACI leadership team have a clear passion for concrete.

“Through their hard work, our students have honed their leadership skills, gained beneficial experience in concrete material behavior and amplified SIUE’s outstanding reputation in concrete construction.”

The SIUE team was runner-up in a regional ACI competition earlier in the spring semester.

SIUE Inventive Solutions Team Initiates Family Earth Festival in Granite City

2 April 2014, 11:15 am

Special thanks to sponsorA Southern Illinois University Edwardsville team of seniors introduced the Family Earth Festival to more than 140 Granite City residents Saturday, March 29.

Inventive Solutions is a group comprised of College of Arts and Sciences seniors taking a public relations course. They were required to simulate a PR firm to plan and execute a campaign involving events with community partners. They worked for the past two semesters to design and implement a family festival with a sustainability theme at the Complex Youth Center.

Victoria Aupont of Chicago, Alton’s Kelsy DeMond, Adam Heil of Highland, Carbondale native Rachel Suits and Brighton ‘s Ariel Weinman created the project.

“We had so much support from the community,” said Heil, Inventive Solutions account manager. “We never dreamed we would get this much support.”

“It started with research,” said DeMond. “We distributed surveys and collected data from various sources. Then we wrote a proposal as a group. It was a lot of work, but it was really cool to see the final product”.

The research and planning stages of the campaign, which preceded the organization of the event and its promotion through different media, helped the students find their focus and prepare for professional PR work.

“The PR faculty in the Department of Speech Communication hope to prepare senior students for the requirements and the rigors of a competitive marketplace,” said Dr. Sorin Nastasia, SIUE assistant professor who provided guidance. “They understand how to budget, and manage time and human resources in a hands-on format within a real life agency structure.”

Through the long process of research, planning, implementation and promotion, the student team came up with the idea of promoting sustainability in the Granite City community while also showcasing the Complex Youth Center and its contributions to the community.

“The event was a great way to show the community how to be green and also showcase the Center and what we do,” said Kristen Stewart, executive director of the Complex Youth Center.

The Family Earth Festival was sponsored by Icon Mechanical of Granite City and supported by a Meridian Society Award. With that funding, the event was free to the public. It featured food, fun activities, a bounce house, a caricature artist and information booths about sustainability. There were drawings for an iPad mini, iPod Nano and scooters donated by Radio Flyer.

For more information about the Family Earth Festival, contact Adam Heil at 618-610-7587.

Additional information about the Complex Youth Center and the Family Earth Festival can be found on the Complex Youth Center’s Facebook page.

Photo (L-R):  SIUE students Rachel Suits, Ariel Weinman, Victoria Aupont, Kelsy DeMond and Adam Heil.

SIUE Selected as Promising Place to Work in Student Affairs

1 April 2014, 5:06 pm

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville has been selected among more than 30 institutions as a Promising Place to Work in Student Affairs (PPWSA) in 2014. The Center for Inclusion, Diversity & Academic Success (iDEAS) at Ohio State University conducted the national study.

The PPWSA national study is a collaborative project between the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) and the magazine Diverse: Issues in Higher Education.

“The University’s Student Affairs department is, and will remain, a promising place to work,” said Julie Furst-Bowe, SIUE chancellor. “This vitally important unit of our campus community displays a strong commitment to the overarching values of SIUE – citizenship, inclusion, wisdom, excellence and integrity.

“With that sort of focus, it’s easy to see the benefits of employment in SIUE Student Affairs and, for that matter, throughout the campus.”

“This is truly a reflection of our Student Affairs staff who foster a campus climate that values the ‘Five Cs’ of Student Affairs – collegiality, collaboration, cooperation, coordination and communication,” said Narbeth Emmanuel, SIUE vice chancellor for Student Affairs. “Those are the guiding principles in achieving our institutional goals of excellence and inclusiveness. It is with much pride that I salute the staff whose commitment makes SIUE such a special place to work.”

Originally conceptualized in the fall 2011 semester, the PPWSA study was commissioned to examine the administrative structures, commitment to diversity, and workplace or staffing practices of various divisions/departments of student affairs at participating ACPA member institutions.

The survey is comprised of a variety of categories such as family friendliness, salary/benefits and professional development opportunities. More than 100 institutions of higher education participated in the study.

List of 30+ Promising Places (in alphabetical order)

  1. Arkansas State University-Jonesboro
  2. Arkansas State University-Beebe
  3. California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
  4. Centre College (Danville, Ky.)
  5. The Chicago School of Professional Psychology
  6. The College of William & Mary (Williamsburg, Va.)
  7. Hamline University (St. Paul, Minn.)
  8. Hampshire College (Amherst, Mass.)
  9. Holy Names University (Oakland, Calif.)
  10. Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne
  11. Lehigh University (Bethlehem, Pa.)
  12. Loyola University Chicago
  13. McGill University (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)
  14. McKendree University (Lebanon, Ill.)
  15. Monmouth University (West Long Branch, N.J.)
  16. North Dakota State College of Science
  17. Ohio Wesleyan University
  18. Pace University Westchester (Pleasantville, N.Y.)
  19. Rutgers University, The State University of New Jersey
  20. Shepherd University (Shepherdstown, W.V.)
  21. Southern Illinois University Edwardsville  
  22. Stony Brook (N.Y.) University
  23. State University of New York at Cortland
  24. Sweet Briar College (Sweet Briar, Va.)
  25. Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
  26. University of Baltimore
  27. University of Vermont
  28. University of West Georgia
  29. Washburn University (Topeka, Kan.)
  30. Winthrop University (Rock Hill, S.C.)
  31. Youngstown State (Ohio) University

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