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SHSU Update For Week Of Feb. 26


SHSU To Celebrate Namesake’s Birthday

The "Garbage Bag Brigade" weathers the storm to march to Gen. Sam Houston's grave in 2005.

The 120-year-old tradition will continue on Thursday (March 2), when the SHSU history department and the Walter P. Webb Historical Society will celebrate Gen. Sam Houston’s birthday, as well as Texas Independence Day, with a March to the Grave.

Approximately 100 history students, a squad from the Army ROTC carrying flags, and others including university President James F. Gaertner and his wife, Nancy, and several administrators, will meet behind Austin Hall between 10:15-10:30 a.m. to march north on University Avenue, to Sam Houston's gravesite.

There, Huntsville County Clerk and director of the Historical Commission James Patton will lead the ceremony that will include James Haley, author of Gen. Sam Houston's biography, telling Houston’s story and the ROTC firing a 21-gun salute.

Following the ceremony, participants can share in the birthday fun with a cake provided by the Office of Student Activities in the Lowman Student Center Mall Area.

Rain or shine, the march will still take place, as participants found out last year, but the ceremony will be held at Mance Park Middle School in the event of rain, said Caroline Crimm, associate professor of history.

“We never give up,” she said, adding that they called themselves the “Garbage Bag Brigade” because of their rain-repelling attire.

The march to Sam Houston’s grave began in 1889, on the 10th anniversary of the founding of Sam Houston Normal Institute.

After the parade was discontinued in 1932, due to the depression, the Webb History Society restarted the tradition with six students and one lonely flag in 2001.

Following the march, the Sam Houston Memorial Museum and some of Houston’s descendants will celebrate the day, as well as the grand opening of the renovated museum, with a luncheon at First Christian Church.

Lunch will be served beginning at 12:30 p.m. for $15.

Afterward, participants can have birthday cake at 2 p.m., when the grand opening ceremony and ribbon cutting will take place at the museum.

For more information, call Crimm at 936.294.1475.


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‘Excellent’ Teachers Sought

Nominations for the annual Excellence in Teaching Award will be accepted online through Friday (March 3).
The Excellence in Teaching Committee accepts nominations from faculty, staff, students and alumni.

This is a very prestigious award, representing the highest level of teaching achievement at Sam Houston State University, according to committee chair John J. Newbold.

Previous award winners may not be nominated. Those include: William Abbott, Elizabeth Andrews, Gary Bell, Harry Bohan, Susannah Bruce, David Burris, Charles Capps, Adrian Cooley, Richard Cording, Caroline Crimm, Earline Dolive, Jerry Dowling, Frances Elmer, Coralie Emmons, Frank Fair, William Fleming, Gaddis Geeslin, David Gerling, John Holcombe, Rita Huff, Virginia Irvin, James Johnson, Stanley Kelley, Doug Krienke, Valerie Muehsam, Thom Murray, Mary Ann Nolteriek, James Olson, Mary Frances Park, Phillip Parotti, Ralph Pease, Wayland Pilcher, Mozelle Powell, Debra Price, Daniel Reeves, Marcus Rigby, Carol Sangster, John Snelgrove, Victor Sower, Donald L.Stalling, Bill Waldron, Laverne Warner and Maynard Yoes.

Nominations for the award must be made through an electronic ballot through the SHSU homepage and selecting the appropriate icons, or at

For more information, contact Newbold at


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Administrators To Field Questions For Forum

University president James F. Gaertner, as well as other administrators, will give students the FACTS and field questions during an open forum hosted by the Student Government Association on Monday (Feb. 27).

The Bear FACTS forum, which stands for Fielding Academic and Co-Curricular Topics Students, will be held from 6-7:30 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Kat Klub.

Pizza and refreshments will be served, and door prizes will be given away.

The event is co-sponsored by the Dean of Students’ Office and the Office of the Vice President for Student Services.

For more information, call the SGA Office at 936.294.1938.


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Awareness Week Focuses On Eating Disorders

The SHSU Counseling Center and Sigma Sigma Sigma sorority will collect unwanted clothing and educate students on the dangers of improper eating behaviors during a National Eating Disorder Awareness week beginning Monday (Feb. 27).

Beginning that day, boxes will be placed around campus to collect clothing that no longer fits for a Jeans Giveaway. Boxes will be located Sam Houston Village, Belvin-Buchanan, South Paw, the Lowman Student Center Paw Print, LSC Lobby, University Theatre Center, Academic Building 4 and Lee Drain Building, as well as the Counseling Center Office, in the LDB North Annex.

“The theme is instead of starving yourself to fit into those jeans or kicking yourself every time you are reminded you don't have the body you desire because you don't fit into the clothes you have, give them away,” said Beth Charrier, counseling psychologist. “The jeans will be collected throughout the week and donated to SAAFE House.”

On Thursday (March 2), from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the LSC Mall Area, the center will allow students to build a wall of affirmation, spin the Wheel of Knowledge to test themselves on issues relating to eating disorders, have themselves assessed with the National Eating Disorder Screening and view Jean Kilbourne's movie “Slim Hopes.”

In addition, artwork expressing students’ views on body image, distortion, disordered eating and eating disorders will be on display, including poetry, paintings, collages and mosaics.

In the event of bad weather, the program will be moved to LSC Room 307.

“The Jeans Giveaway and program on Thursday is intended to raise awareness of eating disorders, eating disordered behaviors, and distorted body image and to get students to become proactive in getting help and changing the negative things they think about themselves and their bodies,” Charrier said.

For more information, call the Counseling Center at 936.294.1720.


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Students To Introduce Community To Music Therapy

Mu Tau Omega, SHSU’s music therapy organization, will introduce the university and Huntsville communities to the profession and explain some of its benefits during the annual Music Therapy Awareness Weekend Friday and Saturday (March 3-4).

The mini-conference will include five professional presentations, including four by board certified music therapists on different aspects of the music therapy profession, and one by an art therapist.

“Music therapy is truly a fascinating profession,” said MTO adviser and music therapy program director Karen Miller. “Music affects us all in ways that, when channeled appropriately, can lead to positive and permanent life change.

“As the profession grows, more and more people will be able to benefit from it,” she said. “Students and members of the community have the chance to attend a free mini-conference to learn about something that, at some point, will likely be an important tool in their lives or in the lives of loved ones, if it has not been already.”

On Friday, the event will kick off with discussions on “Music Therapy in a Psychiatric Setting” from 3:30-5 p.m. and “Art Therapy” from 5-6 p.m., both in Music Building Room 219.

That evening, Miller, music faculty member Gerald Blakeman and his band, along with New Orleans guest jazz vocalist Betty Shirley will perform in Music Building Room 201 as part of the MTO Coffeehouse Concert. The performances will be held from 8-10:30 p.m.

“The music styles will be singer/songwriter, folk, and jazz,” Miller said. “It is a relaxed listening venue in a coffeehouse-type setting with popular music styles.”

Saturday’s discussions include “Fitting You in Your Therapy,” from 8:30-9:50 a.m.; “Music Therapy and Unborn Babies,” from 10-11:15 a.m.; and “Neurological Music Therapy,” from 1:30-3 p.m., followed by a drum circle in Music Building Room 202 at 3 p.m.

Saturday’s presentations will be held in the Recital Hall.

“Music Therapy Awareness Weekend events have been very well-attended over the last few years,” Miller said. “In fact, we are continually growing to the point of needing larger spaces for our presentations.”

All sessions are free and open to the public.

For more information, call the School of Music at 936.294.1360 or Miller at 936.294.1376.


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SamWorks To Celebrate Houston’s Birthday

The SHSU Alumni Association will celebrate Gen. Sam Houston’s 213th birthday with SamWorks on Thursday (March 2).

The networking event will be held from 5-7 p.m. at Jose’s Restaurant and Cantina, at 1421-B Sam Houston Ave.

Appetizers will be served and Bearkats will receive their first drink for free.

For more information, call 936.294.1841.


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Theatre Goes ‘Dancing At Lughnasa’

The department of theatre and dance will tell the story of an Irish boy through his perspective with Brian Friel’s “Dancing at Lughnasa” March 1-4 in the University Theatre Center’s Showcase Theatre.

Show times are 8 p.m. nightly, with a 2 p.m. Saturday matinee.

The play is told through the eyes of Michael (Jack Ivy), the illegitimate son of the youngest daughter, Chris Mundy (Danielle Lucy), as he recounts a critical year of his childhood in Ballybeg, Ireland.

Together, the five Mundy sisters raise Michael and strive to make ends meet through hard times.

The oldest sister, Kate (Alissa Palmeri), is the primary money-maker as a school teacher. Agnes (laura Dougherty) and Rose (Amy Burn) knit to make extra money, and Maggie (Katie Stefaniah) is the eccentric sister who is the life force of the family.

Michael’s father, Gerry (Jason Cochran), moves in and out of their lives, returning to charm Chris and make promises he fails to keep to his son, and Uncle Jack (Brian Hillsten) returns home from life as a missionary in Africa cut off from his faith.

Beginning with the memory of the family’s first wireless radio set, the play progress to the end of the year when an unfortunate event changes the family forever.

“Dancing at Lughnasa” is directed by graduating senior theatre major Amanda Hirsch.

The stage manager is junior theatre major Justin Beard, and designers include theatre majors Holly Flannery, set; Craig Brossman, lights; Allison Duke, costumes; and Trey Carnely, sound.

Tickets are $8 for general admission and group rates are available. No children under the age of three will be admitted.

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


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Players, Orchestra To Perform Two Concerts

The SHSU Chamber Players will play a variety of arrangements during their spring recital on Tuesday (Feb. 28).

Faculty members Kathy Daniel, playing flute; Patricia Card, playing clarinet; Scott Phillips, playing bassoon; and Scott Plugge, playing saxophone will perform a variety of literature at 7:30 in the Recital Hall, including pieces from the famous London Trio No. 1 by Haydn, as well as by more contemporary composers such as Paquito D'Rivera and Catherine McMichael.

The concert is free and open to the public.

On Saturday (March 4), the SHSU Symphony Orchestra will feature such works as Johannes Brahms’ “Tragic Overture” and Samuel Barber’s “Dance of Vengeance” during its second concert of the semester.
The concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. at University Heights Baptist Church, on Sycamore Drive.

Admission is $8 for adult, $5 for senior and children over 12, and free for children 11 and under.

SHSU faculty and students will be admitted for free with their IDs.

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


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Summer Degree Applications Due March 3

Students who anticipate graduating Aug. 6 must file degree applications by March 3 with the Registar’s Office.

Those who fail to apply by the deadline will be assessed a $25 late application fee in addition to the $25 graduation fee.

The Registrar’s Office is located on the third floor of the Estill Building.

For more information, call 936.294.1040.


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COBA, Career Services Awarded For Excellence

SHSU’s College of Business Administration and Career Services department were recently honored by Sherwin-Williams, the largest manufacturer and distributor of coatings in the United States, as the recipients of the company’s Award of Excellence.

Ron Novak, the area human resources manager for Sherwin-Williams, presented both with their awards on Feb. 21 for “providing excellent career and educational guidance,” as well as for the “long-standing partnership” between SHSU and the company, according to Timothy Besson, area recruitment specialist.

“The College of Business Administration continually produces high caliber students,” Novak said. “The graduates from Sam that have joined our organization are well prepared to handle the rigors of a challenging business environment. They assimilate at high levels almost immediately.

“I look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationship with the COBA,” he said.

Novak recognized Career Services and its staff, including Pam Laughlin and Vinessa Mundorff, for its support of the company’s efforts in hiring interns and manager trainees.

“They provide excellent service to us as a company and even better, to the students of the university,” he said.

Sherwin-Williams operates over 3,000 company-owned stores across the United States. The company finished 2005 with sales in excess of $7 billion, and will celebrate its 140th anniversary in 2006. They have recently been recognized as a top company to work for and have also been recognized for offering a top entry-level position for new graduates.


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Fraternity Wins ‘Most Improved’ Award

The SHSU chaper of Delta Tau Delta was recently named the "Most Improved Chapter" at the fraternity’s divisional conference in St. Louis, Mo.

“Given that this was a joint Western Plains/Northern Division conference, Delt chapters from almost half the entire fraternity witnessed the representatives from our beloved alma mater be recognized for their valiant efforts to become the chapter we all want them to be,” said alumnus and former president Bob Roush.

Among the four other awards the chapter received, fraternity member Damien DuFour was named the recipient for the scholarship award from the National Fraternity, beating out “over 75 worthy applicants from many of the top academic institutions in the country,” according to Roush.

“This Sam Houston student was accorded the status of being the top scholar in all of Delta Tau Delta's 120 chapters in which over 6000 undergraduates hold membership,” he said.

“SHSU values it's Greek letter organizations and the positive contributions they make in getting students actively involved and making positive contributions on campus,” said John Yarabeck, interim Dean of Students.


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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. 26, 2006
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