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SHSU Update For Week Of Feb. 6


Spring Enrollment Reaches New Record

Sam Houston State University’s 2005 spring enrollment is 13,617, a new spring semester record and an increase of 808 students, or 6.3 percent, over the 2004 spring enrollment.

The spring increases were similar to those reported last fall, when a record fall enrollment of 14,371 was reached, which was almost 7 percent higher than the previous fall.

Spring figures show increases in all categories of students: 47 percent in beginning freshmen, 17 percent in returning/transfer freshmen, 4 percent in sophomores, 7 percent in juniors, 5 percent in seniors, almost 2 percent in graduates, 56 percent in post graduate, and 56 percent in doctoral.

While enrollment was up over 6 percent, semester credit hours increased only 4.7 percent. This is an indication that SHSU is following national trends of more students attending part-time and taking fewer hours.


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Graduation Changes Instituted For May Commencement

This May, those who are planning to graduate will find a different commencement schedule than students at SHSU are used to.

For the first time in the university’s history, there will be three commencement ceremonies instead of two, with the first taking place on a Friday night.

The decision to go to three graduations was based on the number of anticipated graduates and the size of the coliseum, according to Richard Eglsaer, associate vice president for Academic Affairs.

“ As the number of graduates exceeds 550, the coliseum is not large enough to handle the graduates and their guests,” Eglsaer said. “In the past we had considered limiting the number of guests per graduate but the students were opposed to this idea; thus we decided to add a third graduation.”

College of Education students will graduate on May 13, at 6 p.m. in the Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum.

Saturday’s traditional commencement line-up will also be changed, with ceremonies held for the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at 10 a.m. and for the College of Business Administration and the College of Criminal Justice at 2 p.m.

At this point, only the spring graduation requires the Friday ceremony, Eglsaer said.

In addition, other colleges will take turns at the Friday night time slot in the future. The decision as to which college will graduate on Friday will be based on the number of anticipated graduates in each college, he said.


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Club Sports To ‘Open’ With Games, Demonstrations

The Department of Recreational Sports and the Club Sports Council will showcase its club sports program with a weekend filled with games, demonstrations and tournaments beginning Feb. 11.

“ Club Sports Open” will kick off on Friday at 6 p.m. with the women’s and men’s volleyball teams competing against one another in the Health and Kinesiology Center. Afterward, the athletes and their parents, as well as the Club Council and the club sport staff will head to Murski’s Ice House, at 1229 Josey, for a social.

“ The idea is to have a weekend when most of the SHSU clubs compete at home to build camaraderie and give the athletes a chance to see each team in action,” said Amy Swingle, assistant director for club sports and special events. “We want to show that there are large group of student athletes on campus that are traveling across the state and country to represent SHSU in sports that are more non-traditional in nature.”

Saturday’s line-up will include a women’s lacrosse tournament beginning at 9:30 a.m., rugby versus the University of Texas at 2 p.m., women’s soccer versus Pursuit at 2 p.m., all on Pritchett Field; and baseball versus Texas A&M at noon at Kate Barr Ross park, among many others.

The community will also be able to participate with the outdoor adventure club’s rock climbing wall, which will be set up in the Pritchett Field parking lot, or attending a martial arts self-defense clinic, from 9 a.m. until noon in the HKC.

That evening, the club sports council will round out the festivities with a second social at Huntsville Lanes, which will include the first 50 games free.

Swingle said a big reason for the weekend is to show how hard the club athletes work and the sacrifices they make to play.

“ They don't get scholarships; they have very limited funding from the school; they don't have access to trainers; the coaches are volunteers, if they have a coach at all; they carpool and pile into hotel rooms to save money; all for the love of their sport/activity,” she said. “There is a great deal of respect for these students and what they go through for their sport.”

All events are free and open to the public. For a complete schedule of activities for the weekend, visit the "Club Sports Open" link on the Recreational Sports Web site, at, or call Amy Swingle at 936.294.1967.


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Financial Aid Generosity Earns Spot On Channel 2 News

The SHSU Financial Aid Office was recognized on KPRC Channel 2 News for its participation in newscaster Linda Lorelle’s First Annual College Preparatory Conference held Jan. 29 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston.

“ Most of the universities in the Houston area participated but they mentioned Sam Houston (because) we gave out five $500 scholarships, one from each of the enrollment management offices (which donated the money out of its funds),” said Patty Mabry, financial aid director. “Other donors gave away big screen TVs, but we were the only school that gave away scholarships.”

The conference was held for disadvantaged students and attracted approximately 3,000 students and parents. The financial aid department selected the scholarship winners by drawing names at the end of the day, Mabry said.

“ When they (Channel 2) were interviewing her (Lorelle), they said these students are here asking about financial aid with Sam Houston State University,” Mabry said. “We were the only school they mentioned by name. We got good coverage.”

The department was asked to attend the conference by LoanStar, a Stafford loan servicing agency. Mabry said SHSU is one of LoanStar’s largest lenders, and both the department and LoanStar have been invited back for the second annual conference.


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FitBucks Program Picks Up For Spring

It is that time of year again, when the Department of Recreational Sports challenges students, faculty and staff to stay active through its FitBucks program.

FitBucks, which kicked off on Friday (Feb. 4), is a program that rewards participants with prizes such as a water bottle, stopwatch, lunch kit or T-shirt, based on the number of points earned.

To participate, faculty, staff and students keep up with, and send in, a weekly log filled in with the time spent exercising.

Participants can earn points, or “FitBucks,” by doing several different forms of physical activity, including fitness and sports activities, as well as household activities, such as cleaning, or outdoor activities, such as gardening or raking leaves. Other activities may also be included, pending approval by Tina DeAses, assistant director of wellness programs.

Those who want to participate can begin at any time during the semester; however, before participation begins, e-mail DeAses, at, to receive a FitBucks ID number.

The program will run until April 28, with the last log due May 5.

To download a workout log, view approved activities, or for more information, visit the FitBucks page from the Recreations Sports Web site.


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MISS, SQUAD Give Lessons On Diversity At Conference

SQUAD members
SQUAD and MISS members who presented at the Southern Black Student Leadership Conference Jan. 20-23. Their discussions were two of the most heavily attended during the conference.

Students on a Quest for Unity and Diversity and several students from the Office of Multicultural and International Student Services presented diversity workshops at the Southern Black Student Leadership Conference, which was held at Texas A&M University, from Jan. 20-23. These students were invited to present two workshops entitled, “Are YOU Guilty” and “The Brown Paper Bag Test.”

The two workshops were presented by Andonnia Maiben, Sonia Ramirez, Willie Dean, Joshua-Dwayne Babineaux, Lauren Luman, LaQuita Hancock, and MISS coordinator Jennifer Roberts.

“ Are YOU Guilty?” and “The Brown Paper Bag Test” were two of the most attended workshops at the conference, Roberts said.

In addition, Andonnia Maiben was one of 17 students selected to participate in the Advanced Leadership Institute at SBSLC. The institute consisted of an intense three-day leadership session for selected African-American students.

“ Are YOU Guilty?” is a highly interactive presentation for outstanding student leaders who want to learn how to effectively communicate with people from different cultures in difficult situations, according to Roberts.

“ The Brown Paper Bag Test” was a highly informative, yet entertaining workshop that enabled participants to learn about racial discrimination that exists in the African-American culture, she said.

Addressing the concept of “colorism,” an unspoken concern that plagues African-Americans, workshop participants were exposed to video clips of intercultural discrimination, interacted in an experiment, learned the history of colorism, and examined media images that perpetuate colorism.

These diversity workshops and others are available for SHSU and Huntsville community organizations through the Office of MISS. For more information, call 936.294.3588.


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SHSU To Host Scout Conference

More than 250 Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts from throughout Southeast Texas will be on the Sam Houston State University campus Feb. 12 for Merit Badge/Girl Scout Interest Project University.

The event organized by David Payne, provost and vice president for academic affairs, has been held previously for Boy Scouts.

This year's Girl Scout segment, coordinated by Marilyn Butler, lecturer in the College of Business Administration, will be the first of its kind in this area and possibly in the United States, Butler said.

The purpose of the event is twofold. From the Scouts' perspective, it will give them an opportunity to earn merit badge/interest project credits quickly, in some cases two per day, under highly qualified instructors.

From the SHSU perspective, it will give the university an opportunity to make a favorable impression on highly motivated teenagers in the prime recruiting ages. Most of the participants will be in the 14-15-age range, Butler said.

Instructors will be either SHSU faculty members, off-campus specialists, or special interest students under supervision of faculty members.

Girl Scout instructors include Patsy Ziegler, Stephanie Frogge, Geraldine Hynes, Valerie Muehsam, Sharon King, Gary Payne, Patti Osborne, Charles Stowe, and students from business, drama, and photography organizations.

Boy Scout instructors include Alessandro Bonanno, Doug Constance, Stan Kelley, Sharon King, Jim Carter, Tamara Waggener, J. D. Ragsdale, Daniel Mabrey, Rosanne Keathley, Melanie Harrison, Fred O'Toole and Garry Reece.

Registration for the event is closed for Girl Scouts, but Boy Scouts can still sign up online at For more information, contact Butler at 936.294.1266.


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PC To Host Rodeo Day, Let Students ‘Kat Nap’

The SHSU Program Council will give the student body a taste of the “country culture” on Wednesday (Feb. 9) with PC Rodeo Day at noon in the Lowman Student Center Mall Area.

Complete with “Western games” and free barbecue, the event will round up with a “limited amount” of Houston Rodeo tickets, which the group will be giving away, according to PC vice president of public relations Jeff Oribhabor.

On Thursday (Feb. 10), the PC will teach students the importance of a good night’s sleep with “Kat Nap,” beginning at 11:30 a.m. in the LSC Mall Area.

The event, co-sponsored by the Department of Recreational Sports’ Wellness Program, will include a massage chair from the Counseling Center, a self-sleep evaluation and a trained professional who will be on hand to answer questions, as well as go over the evaluation with the participating student.

“ Once the student has participating by filling out the sleep evaluation, they will receive a ‘Kat Nap’ pillowcase to ensure a good night’s sleep,” Oribhabor said.

For more information on these events, call 936.294.1763.


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Whitten To Join Mix At Alumni Gathering

Recently-named Bearkat football head coach Todd Whitten will be the special guest at the SHSU Alumni Association’s SamWorks on Feb. 15 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at Margarita's.

“ SamWorks provides a unique networking opportunity for local Sam Houston State University graduates,” said Emily deMilliano, assistant director for Alumni Relations. “The association encourages area alumni to attend and help build the Bearkat Network.”

Margarita’s, formerly known as Casa Tomas, is located at 3315 Interstate Highway 45.

For more information, call the Alumni Association office at 936.294.1841.


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Counseling Faculty, Students Present At Conference

SHSU was represented by both educational leadership and counseling department faculty and doctoral students during the Texas Association for Marriage and Family Therapy’s annual conference held Jan. 26-29 in Dallas.

Judy DeTrude, associate professor and counseling program director, and Mary Nichter, assistant professor of counseling, gave presentations on ethical issues and family violence.

Doctoral students presenting at this conference included Kate Walker, who discussed family violence; Roxy Riefkohl and James Flowers, who discussed the problems of school children in the home; and Glenn Doig, who discuused substance abuse and the family.


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Send Update Items Here

Please send information for the SHSU Update to the Office of Public Relations at SHSU. For electronic access to SHSU news see the public relations Web page Today@Sam.


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SHSU Media Contacts: Frank Krystyniak, Julia May, Jennifer Gauntt
Feb. 6, 2005
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to

This page maintained by SHSU's Office of Public Relations
Director: Frank Krystyniak
Assistant Director: Julia May
Writer: Jennifer Gauntt
Located in the 115 Administration Building
Telephone: 936.294.1836; Fax: 936.294.1834