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SHSU Update For Week Of March 4

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Roundtable To Address ‘Culture Of Assessment’

Sam Houston State University President Dana Gibson and Provost Jaimie Hebert will share in a discussion on the increasing scrutiny for assessing and demonstrating outcomes in higher education on Monday (March 5).

The President and Provost Roundtable Discussion on the “Culture of Assessment and Performance Analytics” will begin at 2 p.m. in Lowman Student Center Room 320.

During the discussion, Gibson and Hebert will answer questions and address topics including the top 10 higher education issues for 2012, solutions to the Texas public policy foundation, the movement toward the culture of assessment and accountability, and bringing business analytics to the college campus.

Handouts with talking points on these ideas will be available on the President’s Office website, which will allow faculty and staff members to prepare any questions they may have on these issues, according to Lynn Clopton, administrative coordinator for operations.

“There is an increasing emphasis on accountability of higher education in the public arena, which is why it is important to have continuous improvement of documentation of performance and outcomes,” Gibson said.

The roundtable discussions, which are held every fall and spring semester, are designed to generate ideas and dialogue about higher education topics with SHSU faculty and staff.

For more information, visit the President’s Office website or contact Clopton at 936.294.1011 or clopton@shsu.edu.



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Biology Lecture To Rattle Snake World

Howard K. Reinert, biology professor at The College of New Jersey, will share “the buzz” with rattlesnakes during his sixth biennial Edward O. Wiley Lecture on Thursday (March 8).

The presentation, sponsored by the SHSU Vertebrate Museum, will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Smith-Hutson Business Building’s Bud and Joan Haney Auditorium.

“Rattlesnakes: What’s the BUZZ?” will focus on the “wonders of rattlesnakes and what we have learned about them over the last 40 to 50 years,” according to William Lutterschmidt, SHSU professor of physiological ecology.

“He will be discussing his life-long work in the field of snake ecology. He is the expert in determining and analyzing habitat selection and utilization by snakes using modern telemetry techniques,” Lutterschmidt said.

“Most people do not appreciate these animals and how important they are to the natural processes within an ecosystem and maybe after seeing this lecture, many will gain a new appreciation for these fascinating animals.”

Reinert’s experience and publication record has made him a foremost authority on the biology of two threatened species in Pennsylvania: the Massasauga and the Timber rattlesnake.

He has pioneered the use of radio-telemetry in snakes to explore the secretive habits of these most important animals to an ecosystem and has also evaluated ideas of "translocation" of animals in conservation effects by studying the resulting movement patterns of translocated snakes, according to Lutterschmidt.

In addition, the “Reinert Posture” was a termed coiled by colleagues referencing his classic citation, which first described the hunting and ambush posture of the Timber rattlesnake.

More recently, Reinert has been conducting research and helping in the conservation efforts of a critically endangered species, the Aruba Island Rattlesnake.

The E.O. Wiley Lecture was established in 2002 by Lutterschmidt to recognize and honor Wiley’s world-renowned accomplishments as a vertebrate biologist. Wiley earned his master’s degree from SHSU’s department of biological sciences.

“The E.O. Wiley Lecture series is dedicated in his honor for showcasing the research and professional careers of other eminent scientists who have dedicated their lives to studying vertebrate biology,” Lutterschmidt said.

A reception will follow the presentation.

For more information, contact Lutterschmidt at 936.294.1556.



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Career Fair To Present Criminal Justice Opportunities

Dozens of employers in law enforcement, corrections, victim services, forensic science and security services will be on hand to discuss potential jobs and internships on Wednesday (March 7) during the 2012 Criminal Justice Career Fair.

The fair will be from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Ballroom.

The Career Fair allows graduates, students and alumni to meet recruiters for job and internship opportunities. Last year, 41 agencies participated in the job fair, which attracted 400 students and alumni.

“Over the last two years of our career fair, the employers have set up interviews with several hundred of our students who they met at the fair,” said Holly Miller, assistant dean for undergraduate programs. “This is a great opportunity for our graduating undergraduates to make a good impression and obtain contacts and interviews.”

To capitalize on the opportunity, students are encouraged to dress professionally, bring copies of your resume, and do research on companies before attending the event.

“The Career Fair provides a controlled environment where people come and give you information about jobs," said David Miniel, who participated in last year’s fair. "When you’re getting ready to graduate, it’s really helpful. You don’t have to go out and find all these places. It’s a great opportunity for everybody."

Among the preliminary list of those attending are police departments in Beaumont, Belton, Carrollton, Bryan, College Station, Columbia, Houston, Irving, and San Antonio; Travis County and Montgomery County sheriff’s offices; Texas Department of Public Safety; Texas Parks and Wildlife; Federal Bureau of Investigation; Federal Air Marshal Service; Bureau of Diplomatic Security; the United States Marine Corps; Mothers Against Drunk Driving; and companies with private security openings.



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Concert To Give ‘Notations’ On Music, Art

The SHSU Percussion Group will combine art and music when they present a series of “Notations” for the only concert scheduled before spring break on Monday (March 5).

The presentation will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Gaertner Performing Arts Center Concert Hall.

“Notations” represents collaboration not with composers, but with artists, according to percussion group director John Lane.

“(SHSU) Art students were asked to create imaginative ‘scores’ of their own design. Some of the artists provided instructions for the musicians, in addition to the visual work, and some did not,” he said. “Members of the Sam Houston Percussion Group were tasked with realizing or responding to these works by creating sounds/music.”

Among the “realizations” will include Katy Kana’s two “Tangle(s),” and Alexiah Carter’s “(Untitled; acrylic paint on canvas).” These pieces are among those created by students in SHSU’s Workshop in Art Studio and History program.

The concert will also include a performance of two movements from Lane’s “Sequences No. 1.”

The SHSU Percussion Group includes Noelani-mei Ascio, Nick Huneycutt, Carlos Camacho, Kathryn Roessler, Jack McQueen, Charlie Scott, Shane Rutherford, Sevy DeLeon, and Dustin Stahmer.

Admission is free.

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



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Multilingual Readings To Celebrate Women’s Month

The foreign languages department and friends will celebrate women writers from all over the world during the readings of multilingual poetry and prose by women on Thursday (March 8).

The reading will begin at noon in front of Academic Building IV.

Among the featured readers are assistant professor of sociology Lee Miller reading in Italian and English department chair Helena Halmari reading in Finnish. Other faculty and students will read in Spanish and other languages.

“The literary accomplishments of more than half of humankind, women, have only recently—basically the second half of the 20th Century—been consistently included in the canon and/or made available as a rule,” said foreign languages department chair Debra Andrist.

Therefore, it is essential to continue to highlight such accomplishments in order that our students, and the community at large, have the opportunity to explore these accomplishments and broaden their horizons.”

International Women's Day, originally called International Working Women’s Day, is marked on March 8 every year.

“It is a major day of global celebration of women,” Andrist said. “In different regions, the focus of the celebrations ranges from general celebration of respect and appreciation towards women to a celebration for women's achievements.”

In the event of inclement weather on that day, the readings will be held in the ABIV Lobby.

For more information, contact the foreign languages office at 936.294.1441 or andrist@shsu.edu.



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Career Week To Prepare Students For Annual Fair

The College of Criminal is extending its annual career fair into a weeklong event that will feature daily speakers from different aspects of the field.

“This program will allow students to explore the many different careers available within the criminal justice field,” said Fabia Mendez, College of Criminal Justice undergraduate advising coordinator.

Leading up to the Criminal Justice Career Fair on Wednesday (March 7), CJ Career Week will kick off on Monday (March 5) with a presentation navigating into graduate school by national speaker and author Donald Martin.

The discussion, co-sponsored by the Office of Graduate Studies, will be from 3-4 p.m. in the Criminal Justice Center’s Kerper Courtroom. Martin’s book, A Road Map to Graduate Study: A Guide for Prospective Graduate Students, will also be on sale for $10 after his talk.

Also on Monday, from 4-5 p.m., SHSU Career Services will present a program on Interviewing Job Skills in the Kerper Courtroom. Career Services employment specialist Greg Monteilh will discuss proper introduction and responses, tips for remembering names, handshakes, eye contact and body language, the “soft skills” of personal conduct and the ability to put others at ease, according to Monteilh.

Representatives from the victim services field will provide brief presentations about careers and opportunities in this area on Tuesday (March 6) from 3:30-5 p.m. in the Kerper Courtroom. Scheduled speakers include representatives from the Kenda Crist, of SAAFE House; Janice Sager, of TDCJ Victim Services; and Beth Malak, of the Walker County District Attorney's Office.

Also from 3:30 to 5 p.m. that day, representatives from the forensic science field will present information about their careers in the upper part of the Killinger Auditorium. Speakers include Celestina Rossi, a Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office crime scene investigator, and firearms examiner Shane Windsor, of the Texas Department of Public Safety, who will talk about the skills and education needed for forensic science jobs.

On Thursday (March 8), speakers will discuss careers in the legal field from 3:30-5 p.m. in the Kerper Courtroom. Speakers will include defense attorney Gilbert Garcia; William Savoie, of Habern, O'Neil and Pawgan; and Polk County criminal district attorney Lee Hon.

At the same time, in the upper part of the Killinger Auditorium, Conroe Police Chief Philip Dupuis and officers Kevin Hansford and Candi Sherbenou from the SHSU University Police Department will discuss careers in law enforcement and provide advice and information about employment for local, state, and federal agencies.



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Grading Outcomes in Prison Education Programs

The Windham School District provides education programs for inmates in state prisons. —Submitted photo

The Windham School District at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and Sam Houston State University will team up to evaluate the impact of educational programs on inmates after their release from state institutions.

The study is a result of the most recent legislative session, during which the Windham School District came under close scrutiny as Texas legislators struggled to put forth a balanced budget, according to Debbie Roberts, superintendent of the Windham School District.

In a proactive move to better understand and demonstrate the impact of increased education attainment to legislators in the 2013 legislative session, Windham School District administrators approached SHSU and the Correctional Management Institute of Texas to engage in an evaluation of their correctional education programs.

“The impact of educational programs on offenders and their release is a vital issue in nation-wide discussions concerning the reduction of costly recidivism,” Roberts said. “It is our privilege to work with a world-class research group, such as the one from Sam Houston State University’s College of Criminal Justice. We expect this research to prove invaluable to us, as well as to other correctional education entities throughout the United States.”

The research project will examine the impact of correctional education programs on disciplinary actions in prison, employment, and future arrests or incarcerations. Because many offenders enroll in multiple programs over the duration of their incarceration, the data provided by the district will allow researchers from SHSU to attempt to isolate the impact of specific programs on the outcome measures.

In addition, because attendance hours for each inmate are tracked, the research team also will be able to examine the impact of program frequency on the outcome measures.

“Within the field, correctional education is argued to be a very valuable component of correctional programming in terms of how an offender’s time is spent in prison and in the potential decrease in recidivism. Yet because of methodological weakness in the related academic literature, the extent to which education involvement itself is responsible for improved outcomes remains unclear,” said Gaylene Armstrong, CMIT research director and associate professor of criminal justice. “This project will determine the impact that education has on post-release outcomes.”

“Our colleagues in other states also eagerly await the final results,” Roberts said. “This SHSU research group clearly strives to do a definitive, quality study and we are proud to be a part of it—and share the success story of Windham School District.”



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SHSU Recognized For Group’s Efforts

Sam Houston State University has been selected as the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center’s 2011 College of the Year thanks to the efforts of one student organization.

The Sam Houston Association of Medically Oriented Students, an organization for students seeking to enter future health professions, earned the title for the numerous blood drives hosted on campus and coordinated by the group, according to its adviser Aaron Lynne, an assistant professor of biology.

SHSU was among three finalists for the award, which was announced Feb. 17 at a ceremony that recognizes colleges, businesses, churches and other groups who make a commitment to saving lives by hosting successful blood drives. The ceremony was held at the downtown Houston Hilton.

The Houston Community College System was also among the finalists, and other awardees included prominent businesses and groups from around the region, including Chevron, ExxonMobile, and Memorial Herman, according to Lynne.

“Everyone I talked to at the awards ceremony could not say enough about how successful the blood drives at SHSU are, and how great SHAMOS has been at organizing these drives,” he said.

“This honor is due, in no small part, to all the hard work by all members of SHAMOS, but specifically the officers: Bertin Denova, Melissa Gonzales, Bobby Patterson, Jasmine Smith, Chelsey Marks, and Brian Allen,” Lynne said. “This is a very big honor for SHAMOS, and they are very proud to represent the university.”

SHAMOS hosted six blood drives in 2011.

“SHAMOS does this because it is an organization that focuses on the health and well-being of the community,” Lynne said. “Two of the aspects that SHAMOS focuses on are compassion and philanthropy, which is the key to the development of great healthcare providers. A great way to foster this is by participating in Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center’s ‘Commit for Life’ campaign.

“This contribution is significant because SHAMOS helps to mold tomorrow’s healthcare providers,” he said. “The slogan used on SHAMOS’s T-shirts is ‘We are tomorrow’s medicine.’”



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ROTC Drive Saves More Than 136 Lives

More than 136 Bearkat and Huntsville community members came together to support the troops overseas during the Army ROTC Bearkat Battalion blood drive last week.

Sam Houston State University’s Lowman Student Center Ballrom A was filled throughout the two-day drive as the Robertson Blood Center, from Fort Hood, collected blood for the Army’s support contingency missions overseas, including military hospitals and to Germany, according to 2nd Lt. A.J. Harms, Bearkat Battalion gold bar recruiter.

“The Bearkat Battalion, as well as active duty, reserve, and national guard soldiers from around the world, would like to sincerely thank every person that donated blood in support of our military forces overseas,” Harms said.

“There are no words to express our gratitude and how much we truly appreciate the sacrifice you made for those men and women in uniform that are thousands of miles away from home defending our freedom,” said ROTC cadet Carolyn Tatum. “Your contribution is going directly to soldiers in need, and every drop is valued.”

Donors who do not know their blood types can access that information by calling 254.285.5808.



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Submit Update Items Here

In order to assist members of the Sam Houston State University community in publicizing events, the SHSU Communications Office (Today@Sam) is now requesting that students, faculty and staff submit information about events, accomplishments or ideas for feature stories online.

Submission criteria and guidelines, including deadlines, have now been placed online, at http://www.shsu.edu/~pin_www/guidelines.html. This information is also accessible through the “Submissions” link in the right-hand navigation on Today@Sam.

From there, those submitting ideas can access forms that will allow them to provide detailed information about their idea, as well as attach event calendars, vitas/resumes or photos, depending on the type of submission.

Ideas submitted to the SHSU Communications Office are directly utilized in several ways: as news stories, “slider” or SHSU home page stories, hometown releases, and on the Today@Sam calendar.

If your submission qualifies for distribution, we will either contact you for more detailed information, or we will edit the information using SHSU/journalistic style and forward the final release to the appropriate media.

All information is verified before release, so please provide complete, accurate and timely information. Please type all responses in appropriate upper and lower cases.

For more information, contact the Communications Office at 936.294.1836 or today@sam.edu.



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SHSU Media Contacts: Julia May, Jennifer Gauntt
March 2, 2012
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu




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Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu.

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