Mysterious shenanigans will take center stage Nov. 7 as the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Friends of Theater and Dance (FOTAD) presents Murder on the Edwardsville Express, a spoof on Agatha Christie novels, at FOTAD's 14th Annual Mystery Dinner Theater and Silent Auction. FOTAD is the support organization for the SIUE Department of Theater and Dance. Proceeds from the Nov. 7 event will benefit the organization's scholarship fund for SIUE theater and dance majors. Reservations must be made by Nov. 4.
When a murder occurs on the Edwardsville Express, and the clues sound like an Agatha Christie novel, a frantic public relations staffer tries to cover up the crime and wade through the unusual cast of suspects with the help of an atypical expert. According to playwright S. J. Morrison, who has written several whodunit's for FOTAD's Annual Mystery Dinner Theater, it all adds up to a funny experience for the audience. "From the eccentric detective to the improbable murder and the larger-than-life characters, this comedic mystery farce promises to entertain," Morrison said.
"Murder on the Edwardsville Express is a comedic look at Agatha Christie's recipe for mystery novels," Morrison said. "If she were around today, she'd probably murder me. There's mystery and intrigue, but, more than anything, it's about making the audience laugh."
Murder on the Edwardsvile Express will be performed by FOTAD board members and several community supporters seen locally on stage. The 'whodunit' will be performed in the University Restaurant, on the second floor of SIUE's Morris University Center. Doors open at 6:15 for viewing auction items, the play starts around 7 p.m. and dinner is served shortly thereafter.
FOTAD President Greg Conroy said the evening will feature plenty of laughs and good food. "This will be the perfect evening to combine a nice dinner with shopping for that unique Christmas gift," Conroy said. "And, if you have ever entertained the urge to play detective, this is your big chance because participants at each table can guess 'whodunit' and go home with free tickets to one of the shows in FOTAD's annual family theater series, A Season for the Child," he said. Conroy also pointed out that several "fabulous" attendance prizes also will be awarded throughout the evening.
Tickets are $40 per person and include a full dinner. For reservation information, or to make a reservation with a credit card by Nov. 4, call the SIUE Fine Arts box office, (618) 650-2774, or, from St. Louis toll-free, (888) 328-5168, Ext. 2774.
Lively sprites and one with attitude, lovely lovers, a duke, a king and queen of sorts, silly men, silly women, and a man transformed into a donkey. That about sums up one of William Shakespeare's most popular comedies—A Midsummer Night's Dream—and it will open Wednesday, Oct. 13, on the mainstage at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.
The show opens at 7:30 p.m. that Wednesday and continues at the same curtain time through Saturday, Oct. 16, and then plays at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 17, all in the theater at Katherine Dunham Hall. The SIUE Department of Theater and Dance also is planning a 10 a.m. matinee performance for high school students on Friday, Oct. 15, and the public could attend that for the price of a ticket. This wonderful show abounds with great characters and a delightful plot that celebrates magic, young love, old love, and also comments on the foibles of the human race. As Puck, the mischievous fairy, states: "Lord, what fools these mortals be."
"This show is one that Jim Wulfsong, director of our technical theater area, has wanted to design for many years," says Director Peter Cocuzza, chair of the department. He pointed out that this is the third time the department has mounted the show, but the last time it was produced at SIUE was in 1996. "I thought it was about time we resurrected it," he said. "It's a large-cast show and it gives a lot of our new students a chance to be in a show at the beginning of our season. In fact, about half the cast is made up of new students here—a big part in a big show…wow.
"It's exciting for them and it's an exciting show for any actor."
Cocuzza said the play will be updated to a "contemporary, nondescript time" and it will be set in Louisiana, with its mystery and folklore. "It also will allow us to use some Cajun music but we're not changing the Shakespearian language," he said. "We will change a word here or there because some of the passages are archaic and the audience night not understand, but the iambic pentameter will still be there.
"Mastering the language will be a challenge for the students; it also will be a good teaching opportunity for us."
With an idea at first to set the play in New England, Cocuzza said he recalled he had directed a show for the department earlier in the decade that was placed in the same location, so he changed his mind and decided on Louisiana. "I wanted the setting to help enhance the magic in the play and Louisiana is the perfect place with all of its stories and the mysterious bayou country," he said. "We've also made a few changes in the characters such as the Duke, who has become governor of a parish, for example."
Cocuzza also pointed out there will be some special effects onstage using various types of lighting but he doesn't want to give too much of the production ideas away. "People will find it very visually interesting and exciting," he said. "The rude mechanicals will be very funny and I think the audience will find the humor in all of it."
Tickets for all performances are $10; senior citizens, SIUE faculty and staff, non-SIUE students and SIUE alumni, $8; SIUE students with a valid Cougar ID, no admission charge. For ticket information, call the SIUE Fine Arts box office, (618) 650-2774. Visit the website for more information: www.siue.edu/artsandsciences/theater. The photo includes members of the cast: Ryan Wiechmann, of Bloomington, as Lysander; Dana Szarzynski, of Roscoe, as Helena; Carrie Dougherty, of O'Fallon, as Hermia; and Spenser Greentree, of Lawrenceville, as Demetrius. (SIUE Photo by Bill Brinson)
Members of the Edwardsville High School computer team will work with the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Engineering to offer a Robot Carnival from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 11.
The event will allow 3-5 graders the opportunity to learn about designing and building robots. Students will gain hands-on experience working with robots during the Monday Morning Robotics Mini-Camp.
The cost to attend the camp is $35 and it is limited to the first 24 students. For more information, contact Scott Hagin, (618) 656-7100, ext. 20886. A registration form is available at http://www.ecusd7.org/ehs/ehsstaff/shagin/botball/campreg.doc.
Erin Timpe, associate professor of pharmacy practice in the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Pharmacy, recently was chosen as one of 30 fellows through the 2010-2011 American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy (AACP) Academic Leadership Fellows Program (ALFP.)
Director of the SIUE Drug Information and Wellness Center, Timpe completed a drug information specialty residency at The University of Tennessee (UT) in Memphis. During that time she also was involved with the Southern Poison Center and UT Family Medicine Clinic. She served as a UT faculty member before her appointment at SIUE.
Timpe earned a bachelor of science and a doctorate in pharmacy from the St. Louis College of Pharmacy. She is a board-certified pharmacotherapy specialist and an officer for the Drug Information Practice and Research Network through the American College of Clinical Pharmacy.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's chapter of The National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS) was awarded Gold Star status at the NSCS' Leadership Summit. An honors organization for high-achieving freshmen and sophomores, NSCS has more than 270 student chapters at universities across the country. Chapters may attain one of four STAR status levels; bronze, silver, gold and platinum. Each level is determined based on the quantity and quality of events a chapter conducted the previous year.
The award comes as no surprise, said Rachel Thornton, NSCS national staff representative who is familiar with the SIUE chapter and its officers. "The members of SIUE's chapter are amazing," she said. "They have gone above and beyond by creating innovative programs, while expanding and improving existing programs and providing an exceptional experience for their members. They have truly embraced the ideals of NSCS."
In addition to the award, the chapter also will receive a $250 Chapter Scholarship and a letter from NSCS leadership to SIUE Chancellor Vaughn Vandegrift to commemorate the recognition. Thornton also pointed out the reward of attaining gold status is second only to the impact it has had on the community and the bonds it has strengthened between chapter members. "To attain gold status," Thornton said, "chapters are required to hold an induction ceremony for new members, create a student mentoring program, hold campus–wide events to support NSCS' integrity initiative, create an on-campus membership recruitment campaign and engage a campus office in a chapter event."
NSCS is a member of the Association of College Honor Societies and is the nation's only interdisciplinary honors organization to invite first- and second-year college students. Membership is by invitation only, based on grade point average and class standing. NSCS offers members exclusive access to scholarships, career resources, leadership and networking opportunities. NSCS has more than 750,000 members and 270 chapters in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.
By Patricia Merritt
Public Relations Director
SIUE East St. Louis Center
(EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill.) – Parents and guardians of students at the SIUE East St. Louis Charter High recently enjoyed an evening of information and had the opportunity to find out more about new administrators, faculty, policies and programs at the school's recent Open House.
"We're excited about the changes and improvements that have been made here at the Charter High School," said Frances Karanovich, SIUE Charter High School program director. "Our school is a place where hope happens for every student. We expect our students to be engaged in learning activities and strive for success."
Approximately half of the school's student population had parents and guardians turn out last week who heard Karanovich talk about the school's mission and goals for their children. "You are critical to your children's success," Karanovich said. "We won't be able to make the educational impact we need to without your help." Karanovich and Willis Young, assistant director at the SIUE Charter High School, discussed new policies, reviewed discipline expectations and highlighted upcoming events. The school's director also encouraged parents to regularly visit and participate in parent activities.
The evening also showcased the new Read 180 program, a state-of-the-art reading laboratory designed to increase reading comprehension scores among enrolled students. Charter High School teachers Stephanie Newton, Sherry Nelson, Edna Woods and Allison Tutor presented the Read 180 program to parents.
Parents and guardians also met with representatives of tutoring services in the St. Louis Metropolitan Area. The free tutoring services are available to qualifying students as part of the No Child Left Behind Support Educational Services (SES). Parents can learn more about SES programs by calling Mary Love, (618) 646-3073.
By Professor Chris Gordon, Ph.D.
Assistant professor of construction and chair of that department
in the SIUE School of Engineering
In May, the SIUE Engineers Without Borders (EWB) and two professionals from the Gateway Professional Partners Chapter (GPPC) of St. Louis traveled to Pimienta, Honduras, to construct two drainage ditches, as well as gutters for houses in a community called "The Casitas." Group members included GPPC engineers Gina Gansman and Alice Haga and SIUE students Shane Richardson, Jamie Walker, Damien Di Vittorio, Tim Pirmann, Leslie Stallons, Irving Lucas, Nathen Leach and Eric Poettker.
Upon arriving in Honduras, they first learned that the Casitas community had been without running water for 10 days, which made it that much more apparent how important not just storm water management but water management is in their community. "In the U.S. we're so used to just turning on our faucet and getting running water," said EWB vice president Leslie Stallons. "The people here don't have that luxury, but that's one of the many things we hope to help them with in the future."
The group spent two weeks cutting, measuring and installing gutters on houses, as well as mixing, pouring and carrying blocks to construct the drainage ditches. With the help of the community and the mayor of Pimienta, Dr. Raul Ugarte, the group installed two drainage ditches and gutters for the community just in time. Only a week after the group returned to U.S. soil, tropical storm Agatha tore through Central America dropping large amounts of rainfall. Agatha put the EWB project to the test. "The timing of our project couldn't have been any better," said EWB President Damien Di Vittorio. "We've heard from our contacts in Pimienta that the drainage ditches held up amazingly well, which was what we were hoping to hear all along."
Last month, SIUE's Di Vittorio and Stallons returned to Pimienta with members of the GPPC and other members of the EWB chapter from the University. They helped complete an assessment on a joint project to reconstruct a bridge that was washed away when Hurricane Mitch hit in 1998. The project is expected to take two years to complete.
The EWB-SIUE student chapter is building more than infrastructure in partnership with this community and other EWB chapters. We're building global awareness, community and a skill set in sustainable development that you can't teach in a book. Our student leaders have made fantastic strides with this organization, and continue to make a substantial difference in Pimienta.
Congratulations: Debra Howard, a Mailing Services supervisor in the SIUE Post Office, is the September recipient of the Employee Recognition Award. In the photo, Howard (center) is flanked by her supervisor, Pat Devine, manager of Mailing Services, who nominated Howard for the award, and Vice Chancellor for Administration Kenn Neher, who presented the award. In addition to the plaque Howard was presented, she was awarded a $25 gift certificate to the SIUE Bookstore, two complimentary lunch coupons to the University Restaurant or other Dining Services locations, and parking close to her office for the month. (SIUE Photo by Denise Macdonald)
SIUE Chancellor Vaughn Vandegrift welcomed 33 new and four returning students from Istanbul Technical University (ITU) at a recent reception. The students are enrolled in the Industrial Engineering Dual Diploma program between the SIUE School of Engineering and ITU. After the reception, several students commented that they sincerely appreciated the Chancellor taking the time to talk to them, enjoying his informal style at the gathering.
"The current number of students represent a significant increase in enrollment in the Industrial Engineering program, which mirrors the overall growth the School of Engineering has experienced in recent years," said Engineering Dean Hasan Sevim. The School achieved a record high enrollment in Fall 2010 semester with 995 undergraduate and 238 graduate students, respectively. The total number of students, 1,233, is the highest in the School's history.
When asked the reason for recent growth, Sevim said: "Passion of the faculty and staff for the School, enthusiasm of our student chapters and teams to represent the School professionally in all venues, and dedication of our new advisement office staff to go out of their way to help and serve prospective students have all been significant factors.
I want to also credit the excellent performance of our graduates in the workplace. Their dedication and hard work in the industry has elevated our degrees to a higher standard," Sevim said. "The collective efforts of our employees, current students, alumni and friends are also the keys to this success."
Ruth Slenczynska, world-renowned concert pianist and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville music professor emerita, will perform works of Samuel Barber, Beethoven, Brahms and Schumann in a 7:30 p.m. concert Friday, Sept. 24, in the theater at SIUE's Katherine Dunham Hall. Seating is limited. Miss Slenczynska's appearance—the first at SIUE since 2003—is being co-sponsored by the Department of Music and the Friends of Lovejoy Library. Tickets are $20 per person and may be obtained by calling the department, (618) 650-3900.
In addition, the celebrated pianist will be speaking from 3-4:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, in the John C. Abbott Auditorium on the lower level of SIUE's Lovejoy Library. Miss Slenczynska plans to share her memories of notable musicians and world leaders she met during her eight decades as a concert pianist. Tickets at $10 per person will be available at the door.
Hailed as one of the greatest musical prodigies, Miss Slenczynska made her debut in Berlin at age six and in Paris, with a full orchestra, at seven. She studied with celebrated pianists and composers Arthur Schnabel, Egon Petri, Alfred Cortot, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Madame Nadia Boulanger. Because of an intense touring schedule and the stress of rigorous practice at such a young age, she withdrew from public performance at 15. She resumed her career in 1951 and established herself as a pianist of impeccable technique and keen musical insight. She became artist-in-residence at SIUE in 1964 and retired in 1987, but continued to teach part time at the University.
Continuing her career after SIUE, Miss Slenczynska accepted a teaching position at Soochow University in Taipei, Taiwan for the 2002-03 academic year. She has since played concerts in Japan and recorded a highly-acclaimed series of CDs, The Art of Ruth Slenczynska, on the Liu MAER label, which features Brahms' complete piano character pieces, Chopin's scherzi, ballades, etudes and preludes, and sonatas by Mozart, Beethoven and Chopin.
She currently teaches privately in New York City, offering master classes and lectures, and also is juror for various piano competitions.
The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Alumni Association will play host to a networking and social gathering of alumni from 2-6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23, at the Grafton (IL) Winery and Brewhaus.
Each alumni participant will be offered a complimentary glass of wine to honor and celebrate former Alumni Board members, courtesy of the board. "This is a chance to reconnect with old friends and meet the current Board of Directors," said Steve Jankowski, director of SIUE Alumni Affairs.
"This also is a chance to network with SIUE alumni, faculty and staff, so we recommend bringing business cards."
Those interested may RSVP by Oct. 11 by contacting Katie Bennett, assistant director of Alumni Affairs, by phone: (618) 650-2762, or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Daily Beast, a nationally recognized online news magazine, has ranked Southern Illinois University Edwardsville 21st in the nation among its Top 50 Safest Colleges. The rankings were released recently by the news outlet as part of its Second Annual Daily Beast College Safety Rankings. The editors of the online magazine said they "pored over the three most recent calendar years of campus security and crime data (2006-08) compiled by the U.S. Department of Education, as well as the FBI and the Secret Service, in conjunction with the Clery Act, the federal mandate requiring all schools that receive federal funding to disclose crime information annually.
"The data reflect incidents reported to campus or local police, not convictions," the magazine states.
SIUE Police Chief Gina Hays said crime on the SIUE campus for the past several years has been very low. "I think it's a tribute to the daily hard work done by our officers on campus and the things we do to try and prevent crime from happening, such as the Community Policing program," Hays said. "In addition to regular squad car patrols, police on bicycles and foot patrols—which we believe provide a solid presence on campus—we also engage with student organizations on campus in an effort to become more a part of the student community."
Hays said SIUE Police also engage with the University community through annual discussions with potential students and their parents during the SIUE Springboard sessions each spring. "We also speak with new faculty and staff during employee orientations." In addition, Hays said, the police do "walks" with students every year to determine how they perceive various areas and where an emergency phone might be of most benefit. Under the SIUE Campus Violence Prevention Plan, there are more than 80 emergency phones on campus.
"We also have safety videos online to help students learn what to do in dangerous situations," Hays said. "Students may also sign up for the E-Lert system which provides a text message to a student's cell phone if an ongoing emergency situation is occurring."
"And, despite the current hiring freeze, we continue to hire new police officers when needed," she said.
In ranking the University as No. 21 among the safest 50 campuses in the country, The Daily Beast reported the 2006-08 SIUE crime statistics: no murders, negligent homicides, non-forcible rapes or arsons. SIUE Chancellor Vaughn Vandegrift said he's not surprised by the findings. "At SIUE, we've known for quite some time that we are one of the safest campuses in the country," Vandegrift said. "Our police officers are academy trained, and we are proud of the work they do for the University.
"With such a great police presence on campus and the fact that our officers engage with our students and student organizations every day," Vandegrift said, "we're fortunate to have one of the safest campuses in the country."
Washington Monthly, a national magazine, has ranked Southern Illinois University Edwardsville among the Top 50 master's granting colleges and universities in the nation, with SIUE coming in 14th among public institutions on that list. The magazine's editors explained that the rankings are based on an institution's "contribution to the public good in three broad categories: Social Mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students), Research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and PhDs), and Service (encouraging students to give something back to their country)."
These current rankings were released after similar rankings last month from U.S.News & World Report that put SIUE in the top 68 "Up-and-Coming" universities nationally. The U.S. News rankings are based on the academic preparedness of students, graduation rates, faculty characteristics and the reputation of SIUE in higher education. Washington Monthly ranks SIUE 46th overall nationally among its Top 50 Master's Universities category, which includes public and private institutions. Overall, SIUE was eighth in expenditures for research and placed in the top half for community service performed by graduates.
Under the service sub-category, SIUE was ranked first in percent of federal work study funds spent on students employed in community service programs. During the past fiscal year, SIUE received more than $600,000 in federal work study funds, of which 85 percent were spent on the federal America Reads program the University offers at its East St. Louis Center.
The Washington Monthly editors say they believe higher education should be judged on how well students have been prepared to become dedicated citizens who serve their communities and the country rather than how much is spent by an institution on "fame and glory." For example, since 1987 the University has offered the Student Leadership Development Program, a series of modules about leadership and several service opportunities, such as volunteer projects on campus and within the region through the SIUE Kimmel Leadership Center.
"SIUE takes pride in how well our students have become productive members of society after graduation," SIUE Chancellor Vaughn Vandegrift said. "One of our five institutional values, which are displayed for all to see in the Morris University Center, is Citizenship. In fact, Citizenship is first on the list because we feel it's important to foster that value by encouraging students in social, civic and political responsibility, globally, nationally, locally and within the University," he said. "At SIUE we believe if we do the right things and do them well, everyone benefits.
"The national recognitions we receive are an indication that we are doing the right things for our students. But, it's the students themselves doing well by doing good in the real world that are equally significant indicators."
The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Education will conduct an informational meeting in Red Bud about pursuing a master's in educational administration at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14. A master's in educational administration offers teachers a program that could lead to general administration certification (Type 75) (GAC) in Illinois and/or initial administrative certification in Missouri. The GAC in Illinois covers such positions as assistant principal, principal, director and assistant superintendent.
The meeting will take place at the Southwestern Illinois College (SWIC) campus in the Performing Arts Room, 500 West South Fourth, in Red Bud. By attending the informational meeting, prospective students will be able to have their questions answered, review courses that are required for program completion and learn about SIUE's administrative requirements. Because proposed state mandated changes to the educational administration program are coming soon, the SIUE School of Education recommends teachers take advantage of the program as soon as possible. A $30 fee, payable by check or credit card, is required for entry into the program. Cooperating teacher tuition waivers may be used from both SIUE and SIU Carbondale for the programs.
For more information, or if unable to attend the orientation program but interested in learning more about the program, contact Angie White, (618) 650-2433, or by e-mail: email@example.com.
The Graduate School at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville is a great resource to help find the advance knowledge and training to become a leader in your profession. From 11 a.m.-1 p.m. or from 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 30, those interested in learning how to get started may attend at the Fourth Annual SIUE Graduate Open House. The event gives prospective students the facts about the 40 graduate programs offered at SIUE.
The open house will be conducted in Goshen Lounge, on the first floor of SIUE's Morris University Center, providing information about graduate admission requirements such as deadlines and standardized tests, as well as graduate education financing options, graduate assistantships, competitive graduate awards and graduate scholar awards.
Graduate programs at SIUE are available in the College of Arts and Sciences, and the schools of Business, Education, Engineering and Nursing, according to Jerry Weinberg, acting associate provost for research and projects and acting dean of the Graduate School. "SIUE is an active research community where faculty attain funded grants from major agencies such as the National Science Foundation, the National Institute for Health, NASA, the National Endowment for Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts, among many others," Weinberg noted.
"At SIUE, graduate students have the opportunity to work closely with the faculty on their research and creative projects, while gaining practical knowledge and practice in their chosen field."
According to U.S.News & World Report, SIUE is ranked among the top 20 public universities in the Midwest-Master's category for the fourth consecutive year. The ranking's overall scores—included in the magazine's Best Colleges 2011 issue—are based on the academic preparedness of students, graduation rates, faculty characteristics and the reputation of SIUE in higher education.
"SIUE offers opportunities far beyond an undergraduate education," said Shelly Robinson, coordinator of graduate recruitment and the open house coordinator. "In addition to some of our more popular graduate programs, like the MBA and public administration, we offer some very specialized programs, such as art therapy counseling and a master's in marketing research, one of just a few in the nation.
"A few more years of study can make a world of difference to a career."
Free parking for the Sept. 30 event is available in Lot B, next to the Morris University Center. For more information, or to register, visit the Web site: www.siue.edu/graduatestudents
A Season for the Child (SfC)—the family-oriented live theater season sponsored by the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Friends of Theater and Dance (FOTAD), TheBANK of Edwardsville, Ameren Utilities and the Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation in St. Louis—opens its 21st season with a delightful musical adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's beloved classic, Treasure Island, on Saturday, Oct. 23.
The performance will begin at 7 p.m. that Saturday in the theater in SIUE's Katherine Dunham Hall. The first FOTAD season premiered in 1990. SfC features professional theater troupes from St. Louis staging adaptations of various children's stories, using interactive techniques that not only delight children and parents, but also provide a learning experience.
Treasure Island, to be performed by Piwacket Theater for Children of St. Louis, extols a message of appreciation and encourages math skills as it tells the tale of young Jack Hawkins, who befriends the lovable rogue Long John Silver. It's a tale of high adventure known for its atmosphere, character and action. This particular performance is made possible by a grant from the Fox Performing Arts Charitable Foundation in St. Louis.
FOTAD, a support group for the SIUE Department of Theater and Dance, uses proceeds from the family theater series to help fund merit awards for talented SIUE theater and dance students. Each year, the organization awards more than $5,000 in merit scholarships to qualified students. In addition, FOTAD funds scholarships for new freshmen entering the theater and dance program.
FOTAD also has an endowment to help fund the merit scholarship program. Those interested in donating to the endowment may contact Greg Conroy, (618) 692-0874.
Subscription tickets are $16 for four shows, a $4 savings; if purchased by Oct. 1, the season tickets are $12, an $8 savings. Individual tickets are $5; subscriptions and individual tickets are available through the SIUE Fine Arts box office, (618) 650-2774. The holiday production of the 2010-11 season is The Nutcracker at 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville has reached the largest overall enrollment in the history of the school at 14,107, representing a 1.2 percent increase over last fall's enrollment of 13,941. The record enrollment numbers were released on the heels of U.S.News & World Report ranking SIUE as one of the "Top Up-And-Coming Schools" in the nation for the second consecutive year and for the fourth consecutive year among the Top 20 of all public master's granting institutions in the Midwest.
In addition, the rankings cited SIUE for its excellence in the senior capstone (assessment) category as one of 15 schools—alongside Princeton, Stanford and Brown—for the sixth consecutive year.
In the "Top Up-And-Coming Schools" category, SIUE was cited by its peers and reported as one of only three Midwestern regional universities for recently making "innovative changes in the areas of faculty, student life, campus life and facilities." All the rankings are in the magazine's Best Colleges of 2011 issue.
SIUE Provost Paul Ferguson released the fall enrollment numbers today, which include undergraduate, graduate and professional schools. The new freshman class of 2,030 is up from 1,940 last year, representing the largest group of new freshmen ever, for total growth since 2005 of some 16 percent. "We continue to attract new students who are coming to SIUE as a first-choice, first-tier institution in Illinois," Ferguson said. He also noted "this national recognition strongly supports the commitment of SIUE to continuous quality improvement and academic innovation in all of our academic programs, and is a wonderful affirmation of the excellence of our faculty, staff and students."
According to Scott Belobrajdic, SIUE's assistant vice chancellor for Enrollment Management, this is the third consecutive year of overall enrollment growth at the University including new graduate students. "Overall, our graduate program is up 13 percent since 2007 and our new transfers are up 8.3 percent over last year from 1,107 to 1,196 this year," Belobrajdic said. "Our new freshman class—with a mean ACT score of 22.5— includes 44 valedictorians and students from 18 states," he said. The ACT average score is 20.7 in Illinois and 21.0 for the nation. "One third of the incoming freshman class has an interest in SIUE's pre-professional health programs including pre-med, pre-dental, pre-pharmacy, pre-veterinary medicine and the SIUE nursing program.
"Applications to SIUE undergraduate and graduate school programs reached 16,759 this year, up 9 percent from last year," Belobrajdic added. "Enrollment from traditional SIUE feeder high schools and the local region remained consistent with the past few years. We have experienced a significant increase in interest from Chicago and St. Louis," he pointed out. "The diversity of the class has increased again this year with 27 percent of the students coming from ethnic and cultural backgrounds traditionally underrepresented in higher education in the state of Illinois."
Belobrajdic pointed out that SIUE's national recognition and low tuition may be factors in the University's growth. "Two factors which may be converging to support the recent growth in enrollment are the increasing national recognition of the academic program by U.S. News and others, and the institution's reasonable costs. "There was no tuition increase for first-year students this fall but the financial aid office has seen a 10 percent increase in requests for aid and they have distributed nearly $8 million more than this date in 2009."
Of the 3,500 students who live on campus, University Housing reports SIUE residence facilities house some 1,358 freshmen or about 67 percent of the freshman class.
The Eugene B. Redmond Writers Club will begin its 24th year of twice-monthly meetings at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 7, in Room 2083, Building B, of the East St. Louis Higher Education Center, 601 J. R.Thompson Drive. All writers, from beginners to professionals, are welcome. The EBR Writers Club, which offers year-round literary and cultural programming for the community and travels widely to present works by its members, co-publishes Drumvoices Revue, a multicultural journal, with the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Department of English Language and Literature.
Founded in 1986 and named after East St. Louis Poet Laureate and SIUE emeritus professor Eugene B. Redmond, the EBR Writers Club trustees include Amiri Baraka, Maya Angelou, Walter Mosley, Quincy Troupe, Lena Weathers, Jerry Ward, and Avery Brooks. Trustees also serve on the editorial board of Drumvoices Revue. (Deceased trustees include Margaret Walker Alexander, Gwendolyn Brooks, Raymond Patterson, and Barbara Ann Teer.)
The group—whose charter members include Sherman Fowler, Redmond and Darlene Roy (president)—will celebrate its 25th birthday next year. Notable among the Club's achievements is the invention of the kwansaba, a 49-word poetic form developed in 1995, consisting of seven lines of seven words each, with each word containing between one and seven letters. Exceptions to the seven-letter rule are proper nouns and some foreign terms.
Previous issues of Drumvoices have featured kwansabas for Katherine Dunham (2004), Amiri Baraka/Sonia Sanchez (2005), Jayne Cortez (2006), Maya Angelou/Quincy Troupe (2007) and Richard Wright/Centennial (2008). Issues of Drumvoices also contain scores of kwansabas plus writings by Angelou, Henry Dumas, Troupe and local authors such as Roy, Jason Braun, Takia Yates, Roscoe Crenshaw, Charlois Lumpkin, Jeffrey Skoblow, Patricia Merritt, Fowler, Michael Castro, Allison Funk and Redmond.
For more information about the EBR Writers Club, Drumvoices Revue or one of its special publication, Eighty Moods of Maya, write the Department of English Language and Literature, Campus Box 1431, SIUE, Edwardsville, IL 62026-1431; or call (618) 650-3991; email: firstname.lastname@example.org; FAX, (618) 650-3509, or write EBRWC, P.O. Box 6165, East St. Louis, IL 62202-6165.
The SIUE School of Engineering recently welcomed 33 more dual-diploma students from Istanbul Technical University with food and friendly faces during a picnic at Edwardsville Township
and Community Park. Hasan Sevim, dean of the School, as well as faculty and staff of the School and staff from International Student Programs, greeted the international students who will spend their sophomore and senior years at SIUE studying industrial engineering.
SIUE students were not in short supply as current seniors in the dual-diploma program and students who studied abroad in Turkey during the summer of 2010 were present to receive their peers and welcome them to the University. Cem Karacal, director of industrial and manufacturing engineering programs and coordinator of the dual-diploma program, said it was refreshing for the new sophomores to be welcomed by the current seniors in the program, who have already started to mentor their younger peers on the ins and outs of life at the University and life abroad.
When asked what he envisions for the program and its new students, Karacal said, "These students ranked at the 98th percentile on their national exams among 1.5 million high school students in Turkey. We want them to graduate with high honors from the program and become ambassadors for SIUE and the School of Engineering."
Jeffry Harrison, a junior business administration major in the Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Business and a vice president of the SIUE chapter of Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, was elected vice president for students last month to the society's national board.
Phi Kappa Phi, considered one of the nation's oldest, largest and most selective all-discipline honor societies, has chapters on more than 300 college and university campuses. Since its founding in 1897, more than a million members have been initiated, with about 30,000 inducted each year. Membership is by invitation only to the top 10 percent of seniors and graduate students and top 7.5 percent of juniors.
Harrison, who was nominated by the SIUE chapter membership for the VP position, was elected in early August at the PKP's biennial convention in Kansas City, Mo. Earlier in the year, he was elected by his peers to the organization's first Council of Students, an advisory panel that was established to involve more students in issues of governance. "Students are the heart and soul of Phi Kappa Phi—the reason for the society's existence, the glory of its past and the hope of its future," said Phi Kappa Phi President William A. Bloodworth Jr. "With the emergence of the Council of Students and students as members of the board, that future is brighter than ever."
Harrison said he was humbled to have been chosen to serve on the national board. "It feels so incredible to be a part of history," Harrison said. "I hope to bring a student's perspective and energy to the board." He said he will be working to increase society enrollment through expanded promotions and networking.
As vice president for students, Harrison will serve for two years on the Society's national board of directors, co-chair the Council of Students and help lead the Society's efforts on behalf of current and prospective student members.
Faculty, professional staff, and alumni who have achieved scholarly distinction also qualify for PKP membership. For more information about Phi Kappa Phi, call (800) 804-9880 or visit the website: www.PhiKappaPhi.org.
The Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Alumni Association and the SIUE Office of Educational Outreach will play co-hosts to the Fundraising 101 Workshop from 6-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 22, in SIUE's B. Barnard Birger Hall.
The Sept. 22 event will include a workshop, a Q&A session and a social/networking session. "This will be the perfect opportunity to learn the basics of fundraising from experienced panel members," says Steve Jankowski, director of SIUE Alumni Affairs. "Members of the panel will share their experiences with the following topics: building and maintaining a donor database; special event fundraising; annual fund; direct mail; and internet fundraising," he said.
The scheduled panel members are:
Julie Pietroburgo '98 MPA – SIUE Professor of public administration and policy analysis
Barbara Cempura – president and CEO, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwestern Illinois
Kelly Millington – vice president, Financial Development, YMCA of Southwest Illinois
Greg Cox '09 MPA – president, Cox Non-Profit Consulting LLP and an SIUE Adjunct
Terri Andrews '91 BS – director of Development, SIUE School of Pharmacy
The cost to attend is $20, which includes free parking and refreshments. Seating will be limited to 65 attendees. To register for this event, visit the website: www.siue.edu/alumni.
A recently released six-year study of Illinois' high school students purports that beginning a higher education career at a community college and then transferring to a four-year institution is a viable pathway to bachelor's completion. The study—released by the Illinois Education Research Council (IERC) at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville—highlighted overall enrollment and graduation patterns from the class of 2002. The study follows 113,135 Illinois public high school students, who took the ACT in 2001, on their journeys through postsecondary education.
According to the study, the students' higher education enrollment and completion patterns were collected over a six-year period—fall 2002 through spring 2008—and analyzed for this report. The report states: "College readiness matters. The combination of ACT score and high school GPA was extremely important in terms of college enrollment and bachelor's completion."
The study also indicates that female students statistically outperform their male counterparts in almost all aspects of higher education enrollment and completion, and a high proportion of the students initially enrolling at a four-year institution do so out-of-state, most of which are public colleges. The study further asserts that at a time when the focus of many national and state policy initiatives has focused on completion of a college degree program, "Given this rich dataset, the IERC researchers made several important findings, many of which have direct policy implications. Though there is much more to be investigated…," the findings state.
"This report is a continuation of several IERC reports following the Illinois Class of 2002 and will become the basis of several future papers providing a more in-depth analysis of out-of-state enrollees, delayed starters, reverse transfers, patterns by sector, as well as, an examination of enrollment and completion patterns of disabled students and other underrepresented groups," the report states.
The following findings indicate patterns with this class, according to the IERC report:
About the Authors
David Smalley is assistant director for research at the IERC.
Eric Lichtenberger, Ph.D. is a postdoctoral fellow with the IERC and assistant research professor at SIUE.
Kathleen Sullivan Brown, Ph.D. is associate professor at the University of Missouri–St. Louis and former executive director of the IERC.
The complete report is available at http://ierc.siue.edu/
For more information, call the IERC, (618) 650-2840, or (866) 799-4372.