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SHSU Update For Week Of April 10

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‘Outstanding’ To Be Honored At Wednesday’s Sammys

Ryan Bridges, Mariel Kanene, and Lance Weaver accepted a 2010 for "Outstanding Community Service Project" for the Student Government Association's "All Paws In."

SHSU and the Student Activities department will recognize more than 21 organizations and students for their contributions to the community and for their leadership abilities during the 17th Annual Sammy Awards on Wednesday (April 13).

The ceremony will be held at 6 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center Concert Hall.

Emceed by SHSU mass communication major Ashly Poyer and and marketing major Cody Wall, the event will include performances by SHSU’s dance department and the School of Music. The announcer is management major Eric Baine Johnson.

"The Sammys is Sam Houston State University's official student award ceremony,” said Brandon Cooper, Student Activities assistant director. “It's truly a way for the university to recognize the outstanding students and organizations that we have.

“For 17 years the Sammys’ focus has been honoring the amazing contributions that students and faculty/staff make at SHSU,” he said. “It's the university's way of saying thank you to those individuals and groups."

Among the awards that will be presented are outstanding first-year, sophomore and junior student leaders, the McDermett Memorial Award for a female senior, the Creager Memorial Award for a male senior, the Outstanding Non-Traditional Student Leader award and the Sammy Award, as well as outstanding organization awards and excellence in service awards from each of the five colleges, which will be presented by the deans.

The event is open for anyone who wants to attend. Dress is “business evening,” according to Cooper.

For more information, visit the 17th Annual Sammy Awards Web site at http://www.shsu.edu/~slo_sad/sammys/ or call 936.294.3861.


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‘Hot Topics’ Panelists To Discuss Human Trafficking

A panel of experts who have worked with legal issues and struggles facing trafficking victims will address “Human Trafficking: 21st Century Slavery In Texas” on Tuesday (April 12).

The “Hot Topics” discussion will be from 7-9 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Theater.

Panelists for the event will include Edward F. Gallagher, assistant U.S. Attorney and district coordinator for the Human Trafficking Rescue Alliance; Ruben Perez, assistant U.S. Attorney and deputy coordinator for the Human Trafficking Rescue Alliance; Kathryn Griffin-Townsend, founder of “We’ve Been There, Done That;” and Dottie Laster, executive director of Million Kids.

David Webb, assistant director for the College of Criminal Justice’s Bill Blackwood Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas, will serve as the moderator.

With 35 years of research and policing experience in the United Kingdom, Webb has developed ideas and strategies to aid law enforcement in the timely and efficient detection of trafficking. He also has traveled the world speaking and raising awareness about human trafficking.

The interactive panel discussion, which is free and open to the public, is hosted by the SHSU Political Engagement Project, in conjunction with the American Democracy Project and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.

The goal of the event is to inform attendees about the relevance and abundance of human trafficking in Texas, which often goes unreported or unnoticed, according to Stacy Ulbig, assistant professor of political science and PEP chair.

Previous “Hot Topics” presentations have covered the Middle East, “Healthcare in America,” and “Perspectives on China.”


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Center To Send Students To ‘Graduation Bootcamp’

The Student Money Management Center will prepare students for some of the unexpected expenses associated with graduation with a bootcamp on Tuesday (April 12).

“Operation Graduation Bootcamp” will be from 1-2 p.m. in Lowman Student Center Room 315.

The presentation will address “the various graduation expenses students may incur but often overlook,” such as the cost of buying a cap and gown, honor cords and invitations; graduate school applications and preparing and taking the Graduate Record Exam; and expenses during a first job search, such as traveling expenses, purchasing new professional attire, and moving costs, according to Tara Richmond, SMMC peer counselor.

“We also will explain how student loan repayment works and options for loan consolidation,” she said. “Our goal is to not only make students aware of what expenses they can expect to acquire by making the monumental step of graduating college, but also to educate them on how to budget for all of these expenses.

“The mission of the Student Money Management Center is to improve the financial well-being of our students by providing the unbiased education, counseling, tools, and solutions students need in order to achieve financial independence, especially after graduation,” she said.

After they have given students the tools to budget for all these graduation expenses, counselors will discuss salary negotiation tips for a first job.

“This is sure to be beneficial to all those graduating seniors looking for the first job of their career,” Richmond said.

For more information, contact the SMMC at 936.294.2600 or smmc@shsu.edu.


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Theatre To Venture ‘Into The Woods’

The Sam Houston State University theatre department will explore what happens after “ever after” during its presentation of James Lapine’s “Into the Woods” Wednesday through Saturday (April 13-16).

The musical, with lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, will begin at 8 p.m. each evening, with a 2 p.m. Saturday matinee, at the University Theatre Center’s Erica Starr Theatre.

Directed by SHSU theatre faculty member David McTier, “Into the Woods” is a musical re-telling of Brothers Grimm fairy tales that re-introduces a cast of familiar characters from “Little Red Riding Hood,” “Jack and the Beanstalk,” “Rapunzel” and “Cinderella.”

The cast includes musical theatre majors Adrian Anderson, Dominic DeFelice, John Ryan Delbosque, George Garcia, Brittany Halen, Mark Ivy, Adrianna Jones, Garrett Line, Chris Martin, Michael McClure, Kelly Peters, Molly Pierce, Kate Rose, Cole Ryden, Colleen Trotter, Kim Truncale, and Danielle Turner, as well as theatre majors Allegra Fox and Hunter Frederick.

Designers include theatre faculty members Eric Marsh (lighting), Christa Seekatz (set), and Kristina Hanssen (costumes), as well as senior theatre major Josh Fehrmann (sound).

In addition, theatre pool faculty member Kelly Martin is music director, dance faculty member Jonathan Charles is choreographer, and junior theatre major Sara Means is stage manager.

Tickets are $15 for general admission and $12 for SHSU students and senior citizens. Group rates are available.

Children under the age of three will not be admitted.

For more information, call the University Theatre Center Box Office at 936.294.1339.


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Museum To Present ‘Independence’ Exhibit

The Sam Houston Memorial Museum will celebrate the 175th anniversary of Texas’ Independence with the opening of a new exhibit on Thursday (April 14).

The reception for “The Road to San Jacinto 1836: History, Events, Archeology” will be from 5:30-7 p.m. in the Sam Houston Memorial Museum, at 1836 Sam Houston Ave.

The exhibit will feature artifacts from archeological surveys conducted at Bernardo Plantation in Waller County and the San Jacinto Battlefield.

Bernardo Plantation was established by Jared E. Groce in 1822 and was the largest and wealthiest plantation in Mexican Texas. The plantation complex included one of the first cotton gins in Texas, according to Sandy Rogers, museum collections registrar.

“Sam Houston and the Texan army camped on Groce’s property from March 31 to April 14, 1836,” she said. “It was here that the ‘Twin Sisters’ cannons were delivered to the army before it marched to San Jacinto.”

Archeological surveys of the San Jacinto Battlefield have been ongoing since 2003.

The exhibit will also feature artifacts from the cavalry skirmish of April 20, 1836, and the Texan and Mexican campsites, and artifacts from the surrender site of Mexican Col. Almonte, at a site south of the battlefield.

“In 1837, the naturalist John James Audubon acquired several skulls of Mexican soldiers from the battlefield,” Rogers said.

During the opening reception, forensic sculptress Amanda Danning will exhibit her skills at facial remodeling using a model of one of the skulls during the opening exhibit. Danning is a consultant for the Smithsonian Institute’s Natural History Museum in Washington D.C.

The exhibit was made possible through contributions by the Friends of the San Jacinto Battleground; Texas Parks and Wildlife, Archeology Division; Linda and Greg Brown; Moore Archeological Consulting, Inc.; Douglas Mangum, Archeologist, GIS Manager; American Battlefield Protection Program; James Woodrick; Glen Collins; Community Archeology Research Institute; Manuel Hinojosa; NRG Energy; Texas Historical Commission; and the Sons of the Republic of Texas, Lone Star Chapter No. 58.

For more information about the opening, contact the Sam Houston Memorial Museum 936.294.1832 or visit www.samhouston.memorial.museum, and for more about Danning, visit www.amandadanning.com.


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Musician To Gather Dulcimer Tunes For Concert

“Shall We Gather,” an evening of dulcimer music with Peggy Carter, will be presented on Saturday (April 16) at 7:30 p.m. at the Katy and E. Don Walker, Sr., Education Center.

The program will include familiar songs remembered from her childhood as well as “some serious musical repertoire and some original tunes,” from slow, melancholic tunes such as “Niel Gow’s Lament On The Death Of His Second Wife” to the energetic “Devil’s Dream Reel,” according to event coordinator Melvin Mason.

“Expect to hear Celtic jigs and reels, New England Contradance tunes, Mountain Clogging music and Gospel songs,” he said.

Music on the dulcimer echoed across the hills and back porches of early Texas and was used to provide an instrumental accompaniment to dancing and singing in many places where no piano was available. The resurgence of dulcimer music in recent years has followed the renewed interest in many traditional arts and crafts, according to Mason.

Carter, a dulcimer artist who has been recognized as the Texas State Hammer Dulcimer Champion and Southern Regional Hammer Dulcimer Champion, has toured throughout the U.S. and abroad.

For the past 18 years she has been part of the scene at Galveston’s Dickens-On-The-Strand Victorian Christmas Festival and at other Heritage festivals across Texas, including the Texas Arts and Crafts Show in Kerrville, the Texas Folklife Festival in San Antonio and the Gen. Sam Houston Folk Festival.

She also is a workshop leader at dulcimer festivals across the country and shares her music at churches, schools and community events.

The free concert is open to the public. Refreshments will be served at the intermission.

The Walker Education Center is located at 1402 19th St.

For more information, call Mason at 936.295.2744.


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Program To Provide An ‘Expanded View’ Of Universe

The SHSU physics department will give audiences an “Expanded View” of the universe, exploring “some of the most beautiful deep space objects through the eyes of the Hubble, Spitzer and Chandra space telescopes” on Friday (April 15).

“Expanded View,” a planetarium series program, will begin at 7 p.m. in Farrington Building Room 102.

The show will also point out which constellations attendees can expect to see in the upcoming months, including Leo, Virgo, Ursa Major and Gemini, as well as the planet Saturn, according to Michael Prokosch, physics department staff laboratory assistant.

Admission is free.

The planetarium seats up to 29 visitors and includes a dome that is approximately 18 feet in diameter and more than 20 feet high in the center.

Two more showings of “Expanded View” are planned for the semester, on May 13 and May 20, both beginning at 7 p.m.

For more information, contact Prokosch at 936.294.3664 or visit the Planetarium WikiPage at http://shsu-planetarium.wikispaces.com/.


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Flamenco Club Introduces Students To Culture

Students interested in the art of Flamenco can learn about it and other aspects of the Spanish culture during the Club Flamenco meeting on Thursday (April 14).

The meeting, conducted by Spanish pool faculty member Carmen Parrón, will begin at 6:30 p.m. in Academic Building IV Room 302.

Parrón began the club last semester as a way to enhance her classroom teaching and now uses it as an informal workshop to assist students in a “spontaneous and refreshing manner.”

“Many of our students of Spanish are required to attend cultural activities outside of class, and I thought that a Club Flamenco could assist them to complete the acquisition of the Spanish language and to have a better understanding of the Spanish arts and culture,” she said.

“I have the students focus on learning Flamenco as a means to access the language and arts of Spain,” Parrón said. “On the other side, the meetings are a sort of informal ‘club’ because I want the students be the center of the meetings.”

Music and dancing are incorporated into the meetings in order for students to “enjoy so special of an art form,” she said. Class credit is also offered for her students.

“The students feel that they collaborate with the arts, assist others to learn, have fun and can be somehow creative,” Parrón said.

The meetings are open to any student interested in Flamenco; not just those taking Spanish.

For more information, contact Parrón at cxp013@shsu.edu.


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Concerts To Feature Faculty, Student Musicians

The School of Music will host two concerts featuring faculty and student ensembles beginning on Sunday (April 10).

That day music faculty will perform “a delightful mix of music from lyrical to very contemporary and entertaining,” according to clarinet professor Patricia Card.

The Faculty Chamber Recital, which will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Performing Arts Center Recital Hall, will feature Kathy Daniel, flute; Card, clarinet; Ilonka Rus, piano; and guest artist H.P. Scott Card, cello.

The program will include Gary Schocker’s “Sonata No. 1,” Xavier Montsalvatge’s “Self-Parafrasis,” and Donald Draganski’s “La Cantina”— a “very fun piece”—among many others, according to Card.

On Thursday (April 14), the 24-member SHSU clarinet studio will perform their annual recital at 7:30 p.m. in the PAC Recital Hall.

“The first half will consist of clarinet duos, trios and quartets performed by students. The music ranges from early classical to modern and even includes three tangos,” Card said. “The second half of the program will employ the entire studio as they perform two works arranged for clarinet choir.”

The clarinet studio ensemble comprises clarinets, bass clarinets and the Eb contra-bass clarinet.

Both concerts are free and open to the public.

For more information, call the School of Music at 936.294.1360.


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SHSU To Auction Property April 30

SHSU will host a public auction on Saturday (April 30) beginning at 8:30 a.m. at the property warehouse in the Sam South Complex, at 2424 Sam Houston Ave.

Items will be sold, “as is, where is,” piece by piece or in lots to the highest bidder.

Some auction items include televisions, a foosball table, exercise equipment, refrigerators, air conditioners, a washer and dryer, projection screens, tables and a table tennis table, among many others.

In addition, a 1991 GMC three-quarter-ton Sierra pickup, a 1991 Ford Econoline Wagon and a 1998 Chevrolet one-ton truck will be auctioned off.

Vehicles can be removed the day of the sale if paid by cash, or check with original current bank letter of credit guaranteeing payment. Otherwise, vehicles will be held for 10 working days to allow check clearance.

Cash or checks will be accepted with proper identification.

All items, except vehicles, must be removed after the sale until 2 p.m. or 8 a.m. to noon and 1-5 p.m. the following week.

For more information, call Wayne Frosch at 936.294.1903 or 936.294.1908.


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Ruffin’s Collection Gets Huffington Post Mention

The latest endeavor by Texas State University System Regents’ Professor, SHSU Distinguished Professor of English and the 2009 Texas State Poet Laureate Paul Ruffin has been named one of the “Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2011” by Huffington Post writer Anis Shivani.

'Travels with George In Search of Ben Hur,' which will be released on Friday (April 15) by the University of South Carolina Press, is among the 25 listed.

“This master of the contemporary familiar essay deploys his Southern humor to subjects as diverse as growing up poor in Mississippi, visiting a Texas gun show, and traveling with the writer George Garrett in search of a town called Ben Hur,” Shivani said.

The collection is listed among “several important books on the current morass in Afghanistan-Pakistan,” “a timely book addressing the exploitation of the nation's younger workforce under the guise of the ‘internship model,’ short story collections “from two British masters, and one great Irish writer,” and an expose on the “madness industry by the British author who wrote the most perceptive analysis of extremists a decade ago.”

“Travels with George, in Search of Ben Hur and Other Meanderings,” “highlights his idiosyncratic wit and practiced storytelling skills in memorable autobiographic pieces ranging from the comic to the confessional,” according to a review from the USC Press.

It is Ruffin’s fourth collection of essays.

The collection is available for pre-order for $29.95 through The University of South Carolina Press, at http://www.sc.edu/uscpress/books/2011/3986.html. It is also available at Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com.

To see Shivani’s full list of the “most anticipated books” this spring, visit


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Send Update Items Here

Information for the SHSU Update can be sent to the Office of Communications electronically at Today@Sam.edu or to any of the media contacts listed below.

Please include the date, location and time of the event, as well as a brief description and a contact person.

All information for news stories should be sent to the office at least a week in advance to give the staff ample time to make necessary contacts and write the story.

For electronic access to SHSU news see the Communications Web page Today@Sam.



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SHSU Media Contacts: Julia May, Jennifer Gauntt
April 8, 2011
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu




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