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SHSU Update For Week Of May 13

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Alumni To Take Annual Trip To Astros Game

Sam Houston State University students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends can watch the Houston Astros take on the reigning world series champions, the St. Louis Cardinals, during the SHSU Night at Minute Maid Park on June 7. The game will begin at 7:05 p.m.

Food and drinks will be served at a pre-game reception beginning at 6 p.m. at Champions Pavilion inside the park.

“SHSU Night at Minute Park is one of the favorite events we host for our alumni and friends each year,” said Alumni Relations director Charlie Vienne. “This event is talked about and anticipated throughout the year. We always receive calls early in the spring from alumni wanting to know when SHSU Night at Minute Maid Park will be.

“It is a lot of fun and a great opportunity to visit with alumni and friends of all ages and backgrounds,” he said.

The Alumni Association will provide chartered transportation to the game departing from Bowers Stadium at 4:30 p.m.

A total trip package including transportation, the reception and game ticket is $75. Packages with game tickets and the pre-game reception, or for game tickets and the reception, are also available through the association for $45 per person, or season ticket holders can attend just the reception for $30 each.

The reservation deadline for the charter bus and reception is June 1.

Individuals not choosing to purchase an alumni package can obtain game tickets online through the Houston Astros website at www.astros.com/. Various seating options are available.

This year’s SHSU Night at Minute Maid Park is sponsored, in part, by Carolyn “Chipman” Faulk, ’70; Annanelle Hay, ’64; Jenna Jackson, ’97; Stella, ’71, and Robert Koryciak; Ellen Happe, ’82, and Terry Phillips; Edgar, ’56, and Carolyn Reeves; and Liberty Mutual Insurance.

For more information, or to make a reservation for the chartered bus or pre-game reception, contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 936.294.1841 or 800.283.7478, or visit http://ww2.shsu.edu/alum02wp/.



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Exhibit Features Alumna Artist

“From Here to There,” a collection of animal drawings and a series of sketches, will be on display in the Lowman Student Center Art Gallery Monday (May 14) through May 30.

Emma GarnettA reception for the exhibit, created by 2010 SHSU graduate Emma Garnett, will be on May 14 from 2-5 p.m. in the gallery.

When Garnett hosted her first exhibit on the SHSU campus last year, the alumna said displaying her art was a dream she had held for more than 50 years.

The 75-year-old began painting as a child, mimicking her father’s watercolor sketches out of admiration for him.

“I would sit there for hours and try to do just what he did,” said Garnett, who acquired the nickname “Deedle” during her youth because she was never caught without a pencil.

But during her teenage years both of her parents died, and the tragedy led to so many life changes that eventually the passion she had for drawing and painting was gone.

In college, the nursing major met her husband, John, and after the couple married and began having children, Garnett said she began to feel the presence of her inner artist.

“My children were the true inspiration for my earlier work,” said Garnett. “I’ve always adored them.”

At the age of 60, Garnett returned to college to complete the degree she never finished in her youth, this time at Texas A&M, where she majored in theatre arts.

After earning her degree in 2000, Garnett felt she still wanted to do more; a friend recommended she look at SHSU and she enrolled after learning about the studio art degree offered by the university.

A favorite memory of her courses at SHSU occurred at the end of her studies when her class traveled to various locations in the city of Huntsville and painted each place in watercolor.

“It really made me realize how beautiful Huntsville is,” said Garnett, “I knew I wanted to come back here one day.”



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Planetarium Series Scheduled For Summer

The SHSU physics department will spend the summer journeying through outer space and exploring the skies during its planetarium series program.

A showing of “Two Small Pieces of Glass” will kick off the summer series on June 5, at 3:30 p.m. in the Planetarium, in Farrington Building Room 201.

The 30-minute video will explore the history of the telescope and “journey through the history of modern astronomy from the perspective of two youths who learn about the different types of telescopes and who invented them including Galileo, Isaac Newton, and Edwin Hubble,” according to Michael Prokosch, physics department staff laboratory assistant.

Also during the June 5 presentation, Prokosch will give participants a “rare” treat: a glimpse at the Venus Transit.

“The Venus Transit is a rare event. The last one was in 2004 and the next one won't be until 2117, so this is the last chance to see one,” he said. “Basically, Venus passes in front of the sun. Like an eclipse—only it can't block out the entire sun due to the distance—you need special glasses/equipment to see it.”

Also during the program, Prokosch will explain and point out which constellations can best be viewed during the summertime, including Leo, Bootes, Lyra, Cygnus, Aquila, Scorpius and Sagittarius.

The summer planetarium series program is designed to show audiences “what is currently up in the night sky” and highlight “recent events in astronomy and space science,” Prokosch said. It will include two other showings scheduled for the summer: “Astromyths” and “The Colors of Summer.”

“Astronomyths” shares stories of the night sky told from the perspective of a young boy on a camping trip with his grandfather. It will be presented June 20, July 3, July 18 and Aug. 1, in the Planetarium.

“‘Astronmyths does deal a lot with constellations associated with fall; however, you can see all those constellations start to rise in the morning hours during the summer months,” Prokosch said.

“The Colors of Summer” highlights “the summer constellations and all their splendor: more colors than you can imagine,” according to Prokosch. It will be presented June 13, June 27, July 11, July 25 and Aug. 8.

For more information on any of the planetarium shows, contact Prokosch at mwp007@shsu.edu or 936.294.3664 or visit the Planetarium Wikipage at http://shsu-planetarium.wikispaces.com/.



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Artists Get Animated During National Festivals

Sam Houston State University computer animation students are showing off their work across the country, and at least one student has been recognized for her work.

Senior computer animation major Alina Ortega’s work was recently selected to appear in two different festivals, receiving “Honorable Mention” in the student category at the 3rd Annual West Virginia Mountaineer Short Film Festival" at West Virginia University, which included many international submissions, according to Edward Morin, assistant professor of art animation. The event was April 20-22.

Ortega’s piece “Sailing Sailing” was also selected to participate in "Still Rendering," a student animation competition screened at Southeastern Louisiana University on April 19.

Works by Marc Acosta (“The City”), Luba Barto (“Abstract Animation") and Quinn Hagood (“Robotese"), as well as a project by Morin, were selected for the festival in West Virginia, Morin said.

All of the projects were completed as part of their coursework in the computer animation program in the "Intro to 3D Animation" and "Advanced 3D Computer Animation" courses.

They were selected from a pool of submissions to participate in their respective festivals by jurors that include active professionals and professors, Morin said.

“Juried film festivals and exhibitions give students an opportunity to have their worked reviewed by professionals outside of the classroom,” Morin said. “Entries for both the ‘West Virginia Mountaineer Short Film Festival’ and ‘Still Rendering’ included animations and films from all over the country.”

The WVU festival also had a “significant international presence,” as well as student and professional animators and filmmakers from all over the U.S.

In addition, graduating seniors Bethany Hargrove, Cole Wiser, Luba Barto, Sara Squires and Rachel Jordan, as well as junior Alex Carter, have had video-based artwork accepted into the University of Houston’s Vis Vid festival of video artworks.

“Vis Vid Fest is an annual video and visualization festival encouraging the production and distribution of high definition and 3-dimensional pieces,” said Annie Strader, assistant professor of art. “This is a professional screening of her artwork that was selected by a high-caliber juror.”

The 2012 Vis Vid Fest judge is the Museum of Fine Arts Houston’s curator of film and video Marian Luntz, who has served there since 1990.

Marian also serves on the board of directors of the Southwest Alternate Media Project and the Houston Cinema Arts Society, as well as on the advisory boards of Aurora Picture Show and the Texan-French Alliance for the Arts.



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Spanish Group Inducts ‘Honorable’ Students

The Sam Houston State University chapter of the Sigma Delta Pi National Spanish Honor Society recently inducted 11 students into the organization based on their achievement in their foreign language classes.

Inducted on April 25 during a ceremony in Academic Building IV’s Olson Auditorium were Osiel Chavez, Encarnacion Fuentes, Jennifer Gongora, Nancy Gomez, Maria A Luna, Colleen Adaire McKinney, Graciela Gabriela Perales, Mayra Alexandra Ramirez, Andres Felipe Ruiz-Olaya, Angelica F. Trevino, and Jennifer Yepez.

Membership in Sigma Delta Pi is limited to students who have demonstrated high scholarship in general and excellence in the academic study of Spanish, according to foreign languages department chair Debra Andrist.

Candidates must have completed 18 semester credit hours of college-level Spanish, have a minimal grade point average of 3.0 in all Spanish courses taken, rank in the upper 35 percent of his/her class, and have completed at least three semesters college work.

Sigma Delta Pi officers for 2012-2013 academic year will include Ruth Becerra, president; Jennifer Gongora, vice president; Nancy Gomez, secretary; Elizabeth Wood Stackhouse, treasurer; and Encarnacion Fuentes, event coordinator.

Kay Raymond, associate professor of Spanish and director of undergraduate studies, is the Sigma Delta Pi sponsor.



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College Honors Donors, Recognizes Recipients

College of Education donors and the students who benefit from their generosity were recognized during two events sponsored by the college on May 7.

Eighty-five donors had the opportunity to mingle with university administration and members of the College of Education faculty and staff during a donor tea, held annually in appreciation for their support.

“These donors have given over 58 scholarships amounting to over $170,000 to 140 well deserving College of Education undergraduate and graduate students,” said Karen Smith, COE associate dean for undergraduate programs and assessment.

That evening more than 400 education supporters gathered in the Lowman Student Center Ballroom for the 34th Annual Awards Celebration and Reception.

“Every recipient received a certificate for their scholarship and/or award during this event,” said Jenny Estrada, secretary for COE undergraduate programs and assessment. “The presentation was followed by a reception where donors, recipients and their families were honored guests.”



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Transfer Students ‘Emerge’ As Leaders

cohort of transfer students
Members of the first cohort for the Center for Leadership and Service's "Emerging Leaders" program spent the semester engaged in various aspects of the "Social Change Model of Leadership Development." A second cohort will be accepted in the fall.

Eleven transfer students were recently “engaged” in leadership and challenged to apply those values into various activities as part of the first cohort of the Center for Leadership and Service’s “Emerging Leaders” program.

SHSU’s Center for Leadership and Service, part of the university’s Student Activities department, selected the students to participate in the “Emerging Leaders” program, which is based upon the “Social Change Model of Leadership Development” that highlights individual, group, and community/societal values as critical components in the leadership development process.

Facilitated by Meredith Conrey, program coordinator for the Center for Leadership and Service, the “Discover Your Strengths” workshop focused on the individual values part of the model.

“In this workshop, the students learned about their top five strengths and how they could productively apply them to be successful both individually and in a group setting,” Conrey said. “Jessica Abt, a graduate intern from the Recreational Sports department, challenged the leaders to work through various team-building games and activities to highlight the group values of common purpose, collaboration, and controversy with civility.

“For the community/societal values session, the ‘Emerging Leaders’ traveled to the Hospitality House in Huntsville to engage in a service project where they spent time sorting cans, cleaning, and organizing various areas of the house,” she said. “The final session was a celebration of learning where each participant presented their personal definition of leadership and what they had learned throughout their experience in the program.”

The first cohort was selected through an application process and included Candace Calvillo, Matt Lane, Alison Woolwine, Kayla Foster, Monique Edwards, Reese Burgan, Tracy Ann Pringer, Samantha Miller, Tavia McDonald, Victoria Rowland, and Christine Green.

“We've encountered a lot of transfer students who find it hard getting involved on campus and finding their niche,” said Kalyn Cavazos, graduate assistant for leadership programs. “The Emerging Leaders program helps to instill these campus life values into our transfer students. We want to make their experience even better here at SHSU.”

For the second cohort, a mentorship component will be added to encourage a smooth transition at the university; participants from the first cohort will serve as the mentors, Conrey said.

Students interested in participating in the second cohort can apply through the Center for Leadership and Service, located in Lowman Student Center Room 324. Applications will be available in August and are due by 5 p.m. on Sept. 12.

For more information on the “Emerging Leadership” series, contact Conrey, at cls@shsu.edu or 936.294.3467.



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Alumnae Discuss Tracking Paroled Sex Offenders

As parole officers with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Sam Houston State alumnae Emily Ball and Amanda Isaac have unique tools to keep track of the sex offenders they oversee, including intensive electronic monitoring and regular polygraph exams.

“We only have two sexual offender parole officers in a seven county area for high and low risk offenders,” Isaac said. “You would be surprised how many people out here are sex offenders.”

The two are responsible for a special caseload of about 30 sex offenders released from Texas state prisons, including serial rapists and child sexual predators, in Walker, Grimes, Leon, Madison, Houston, Trinity and Polk counties.

Ball and Isaac recently returned to SHSU to discuss their caseloads with a “Special Offenders” class in the College of Criminal Justice, talking about the many tools they use to keep the community safe and the impact the assignment has had on their own lives.

Many sex offenders are put on electronic monitoring, which provides GPS data on their movements on a daily basis. It also alerts parole officers if they leave their home without their monitoring devices, which include an ankle bracelet and a clip on monitor.

The device can be set to identify areas where offenders are prohibited from going, such as child safety zones, and to alert parole officers if the offender breaches those areas. It also can capture information on where an offender drives, even keeping track of the speed of his or her vehicle.

“You are going to have to deal with it,” Ball said regarding the ongoing discussions about individual’s perversions. “Sex offenders have a different mentality when they think about sex; we fish every single day. We have to stay two to three steps ahead of them at any point of the day. If you don’t, that’s another victim.”

Other conditions of parole for sex offenders may include substance abuse treatment or counseling, approved living arrangements, the payment of fees for court costs, supervision and crime victims, group therapy and frequent visits. Ball and Isaac also deal with parolees with mental health or mental retardation issues, which include their own set of conditions, including participation in programs and medications.

Ball and Isaac said they deal with both men and women sex offenders, and even a handful who have been voluntarily castrated continue to offend.



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Staff Accountant Spotlighted For May

Larry KelarekLarry Kelarek, an accountant II with the Sam Houston State University Controller’s Office, has been recognized by the university’s Staff Council as the spotlight selection for May.

As the monthly “spotlight,” he received a certificate and bag of “goodies” from the group as a “thank you” for his service.

An SHSU alumnus, Kelarek received his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accounting in 1993.

He has been married to Kristie, a 1993 graduate who works for SHSU’s Purchasing Department, for 14 years. Together, they have a 9-year-old son named Christian, who is involved in cub scouts, Aggie Swim Club, and Huntsville Lakers Swim team.

Larry has served on the university’s parking appeals committee for five years and is also vice president of the Huntsville Lakers Swim Team.


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Today@Sam Seeks Summer Calendar Info

The University Communications Office is now collecting information on campus events for its summer and fall calendar pages.

Departmental calendars or events can be sent to today@sam.edu or jenniferg@shsu.edu or faxed to 294.1834. Please include the date, location and time of the event, as well as a brief description and a contact person.

Information collected for the Today@Sam calendar pages, at http://www.shsu.edu/~pin_www/calendars/, is used by various media outlets, as well as the Communications Office for news stories and releases.

All information, including story ideas and update items for Today@Sam, should be sent a minimum of a week in advance of the event in order to make necessary contacts and write a story.

To see a full list of the Today@Sam submission guidelines, or to access submission forms for news or feature stories, calendar submissions, or hometown releases, visit http://www.shsu.edu/~pin_www/guidelines.html.

For more information, call 936.294.1836.



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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
May 11, 2012
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu




This page maintained by SHSU's Communications Office
Associate Director: Julia May
Manager: Jennifer Gauntt
Located in the 115 Administration Building
Telephone: 936.294.1836; Fax: 936.294.1834

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

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