Homecoming '97 at Sam Houston State University promises to "Let the Good Times Roll!" with old standards like the football game, Distinguished Alumni and Hall of Honor inductions, and pep rallies (now called Kat Kalls).

But more than just the name for pep rallies will be new in '97.

Students will vote for the homecoming king and queen through the university's home page on the World Wide Web. Alumni activities will include the first campus wide reunion of a specific target group. This year's guests will be members of national fraternities and sororities.

Some of the other planned student events include a Spirit Competition on Monday, the Soul Lifters Gospel Choir and Gamma Phi Delta musical and step show on Wednesday, the Sam Jam Parade, Carnival, Kat Kall and fireworks on Thursday, the Recreational Sports Raven Run and the Homecoming Greek Show & After Party on Friday.

Friday evening the Alumni Association's Distinguished Alumni Awards will be presented to James E. Gilmore, Frank P. Leathers, Ronald P. Mafrige, John C. Martin and Gary L. Whitlock.

Homecoming day (Saturday) events include a Black Alumni Reception, the All-Greek Reunion, a pre-game alumni picnic, induction into the Lettermen Association Hall of Honor of Gordon Cotton, Frank Fox, David Munden and Phillip Estep, and the Bearkat football game against Nicholls State.

For a full listing of the new and traditional events contact the Office of Alumni Relations at (409) 294-1840 and the Office of Student Activities at (409) 294-3861.


The first stop on the career track for Sam Houston State University graduates is the university's Career Service Center. Here job hunters can find leads, receive professional career guidance or help themselves to a library packed with valuable employment resources.

In fact, SHSU's 1,859-square-foot Career Services Library boasts one of the state's largest, most comprehensive college collections of vocational literature. Much of that collection, as well as all of the furniture and several computers housed in the career library, was purchased with funds donated by Dow Chemical Company.

This Friday, at 2 p.m., amid SHSU's Homecoming Weekend festivities, university officials will take time out to thank Dow for its generous contributions in a special dedication ceremony to be held at the Career Service Center. In Dow's honor, and in honor of a distinguished SHSU alumnus who had an illustrious career at Dow, the career library will be renamed "The Dow Career Resource Library in honor of J.M. (Levi) Leathers."

Leathers, who graduated from SHSU in 1941 with a B.S. in chemistry, began working for Dow's Texas Division as a "second-class oiler" and eventually assumed worldwide responsibility for Dow technology as vice president of manufacturing and engineering. He died June 1, 1987, at age 67.

Several high-ranking Dow Chemical Company employees are expected to join Leathers family members, university administrators and students for the dedication ceremony.

J. M. Leathers was named a recipient of the university's Distinguished Alumni Award in 1977. His brother, Frank, will be honored with the same award Friday evening.

The Career Service Center is located in a renovated church building, on the corner of 16th Street and Avenue J.


Psychologists interested in honing their courtroom skills took turns on the witness stand during a mock trial conducted at SHSU Friday as part of a two-day forensic psychology workshop presented by the psychology department.

On Thursday, workshop participants heard presentations from experts in the field of investigative interviewing and statement analysis. They were introduced to techniques to help them detect when interviewees are lying, and learned tricks to help them avoid contaminating the memory of suggestible persons.

Friday's workshop featured tips on testifying as an expert witness from Mary Alice Conroy, a veteran forensic clinical psychologist who recently joined the SHSU psychology faculty.

A clinician, she explained, may do a very thorough evaluation, collect mountains of data, and reach stellar conclusions and still have a disappointing day in court. Her presentation was designed to help psychologists enhance their credibility as witnesses and withstand tough cross-examination.

Forensic psychology, which involves the application of clinical psychological knowledge to legal questions and legal issues, is one of the nation's fastest growing psychological specialties.

Last July, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board gave tentative approval to the implementation of a forensic clinical psychology doctoral program at SHSU. Final approval for the program is expected by the coordinating board next Friday.


On Monday, instead of taking the traditional banking holiday for Columbus Day, some 60 bank executives and directors will gather at Waterwood National Resort to attend a seminar sponsored by the newly created Smith-Hutson Endowed Chair of Banking at Sam Houston State University.

They will spend the morning with presentations by Jim Bexley, who is the first holder of the endowed chair, covering the topics of Strategic Planning and Marketing Bank Services.

This will be followed by a presentation on Investment Strategies and Services by University of Tennessee Distinguished Professor Tony Spiva and Jeff Smith of Synovus Securities of Columbus, Ga.

After a lunch at which Bobby Marks, president of Sam Houston State University, will welcome the bankers, they will participate in a golf tournament at Waterwood National Golf Course.

All of the Huntsville banks will have representatives at the seminar. Bexley said he hopes to make the seminar and tournament an annual event.


Sam Houston State University's 1997 Fall Semester is not yet half over, but preparations are under way for the 1998 Spring Semester advisement and registration process.

The university's second year of mandatory advisement begins Oct. 20 and runs through Nov. 7, with spring semester advance registration scheduled Nov. 7-14.

James Goodwin, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and coordinator of the mandatory advisement program, said that there are three categories of students who must be advised before they can register for future classes.

The categories include students who are new to SHSU and who have not yet established a grade point average, students with a grade point average below 2.5, and students who have not completed Texas Academic Skills Program (TASP) requirements.

Goodwin said that such students should contact their adviser, whose name, office location, and telephone number are printed on transcripts.

Goodwin said that the purpose of the mandatory advisement program is to improve retention rates, to provide assistance to students who may need it, and to offer students the opportunity to meet with an adviser concerning which courses they should be taking to meet degree requirements.


Show stock from Sam Houston State University's animal science program have won championships at the Texas State Fair and the Pasadena Livestock Show and Rodeo.

A 9-month-old lamb raised by student Kim Carlson, under the supervision of faculty member Barbara Ward, was named a grand champion in the Pasadena show, and sold for $7,000.

At the state fair in Dallas a one-year-old bull donated by agriculture program supporter Woody Ray won champion in the calf class and a bull exhibited in the intermediate class (1-2 years old) was named champion in that class and went on to win reserve champion honors for the Brangus breed.

Three Brangus heifers shown at the state fair by the Beef Show Team earned two seconds and one fifth in their respective classes. The Beef Show Team adviser is Stanley Kelley.

"We are extremely proud of the students, faculty members, and supporters like Mr. Ray, who make results like this possible," said Robert Lane, who chairs the agricultural sciences department.


Five Sam Houston State University journalism program graduates who have distinguished themselves by their professional achievements will be honored Friday at the Fourth Annual Journalism Advisory Council Awards Reception.

Honorees include Billy Leslie Wheaton of Baytown, representing the 1940s, Myles Knape of Galveston (1957), Art Wiese of Alexandria, Va., (1967), Mike Parker of The Woodlands (1977) and Tom McClellan of Statesboro, Ga. (1987). The reception is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at the Sam Houston Room of the Sam Houston Inn.

The Journalism Advisory Council will also meet at 3 p.m. Friday in LSC Room 301. Recent activities of the council have included establishment of an endowment to provide scholarships to help students defray the expenses of unpaid internships, purchase of computer equipment, and sponsorship of Journalism Career Day.


In line with its efforts to provide the opportunity for the children and adults of today to enjoy pastimes of yesteryear, the Sam Houston Memorial Museum is sponsoring a pumpkin carving contest to be held from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 18.

The activity will be held at the Museum Exhibit Hall, and all materials will be furnished free of charge. Parents are encouraged to participate.


Media Contacts: Frank Krystyniak and Phillip Rollfing

Oct. 12, 1997