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SHSU Update For Week Of Feb. 4


SHSU To Celebrate Mardi Gras Cajun Style

Sam Houston State and the Huntsville community will have the opportunity to celebrate Mardi Gras Cajun style with the university’s Fifth Annual Cajun Mardi Gras Festival on Feb. 15.

The event will feature the Cajun music band Jambalaya with guest artist D.L. Menard.

Before the dance kicks off, at 8 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Ballroom, Joe Paris will give free Cajun dance lessons to students and guests from off campus at 7 p.m. in the ballroom.

Menard, Terry Huval, Reggie Matte and other band members will also participate in a symposium on Cajun Music and Culture hosted by Terry Thibodeaux, professor and associate dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. It is scheduled for 6 p.m. in Evans Building Room 105.

Thibodeaux said the Mardi Gras celebration allows people to learn about the culture and also breaks down stereotypes related to the Cajun people and culture.

“I think a lot of times the Cajun culture is misunderstood because of some of the images and impressions that are given from mass media and even in restaurants,” he said. “What you see labeled as Cajun oftentimes is not authentic at all.”

Drinks will be sold at the dance, which is expected to end at 10:30 p.m. Admission is $5 with SHSU ID, $10 for non-SHSU guests, and free for all under the age of 12.


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AAI To Show Dangers In ‘Beer, Bait, Ammo’ Combo

The Alcohol Abuse Initiative will tell students to "Say No to Beer, Bait and Ammo" on Tuesday (Feb. 6).

The discussion and demonstration on the dangers of mixing alcohol with hunting and fishing will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in front of the Bernard G. Johnson Coliseum, near the flagpoles.

The United States Coast Guard reports that 50 percent of all boating fatalities are alcohol-related and are more likely to result from leaning out of a boat to pick up a decoy and falling overboard than from a struggle with an animal.

“We have many avid hunters and fishers at SHSU,” said Michelle Lovering, health programming coordinator at the Student Health Center and AAI member. “Most of them take the sport very seriously and follow all safety precautions, which include avoiding the consumption of alcohol while hunting or fishing; however, some routinely gamble with the risky combination.

“Not only is mixing alcohol and firearms just grossly irresponsible, but alcohol will certainly decrease the likelihood of a successful hunt,” she said. “Using a boat while hunting or boat fishing while drinking is illegal and can lead to a BWI (boating while intoxicated).”

During the event, the AAI will demonstrate how alcohol can impair one’s ability while hunting by having students shoot a paintball gun at a target while wearing beer goggles, which will “simulate the effect that alcohol would have on their aim,” according to Lovering.

The paintball guns and targets will be provided and facilitated by Maj. Chris Wooten from the SHSU Military Science Department and students from the Army ROTC program.

Students should bring their SWAAT cards to the event.

For more information, contact Lovering at 936.294.4347 or, or visit the AAI Web site at


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MISS To Host Third Diversity Conference

The Office of Multicultural and International Student Services will show SHSU students, faculty and staff how "One Generation Can Change The Nation" during its third annual Diversity Leadership Conference Feb. 23-25.

The conference, which will be held at various places on campus and mainly in the Lowman Student Center, “is the first of its kind in the state of Texas and is a way for students from around the state to come together and discuss topics, concerns, and issues that are facing today's youth in regards to diversity,” said MISS program coordinator Ashley McDonough.

This year, the DLC will highlight speakers from around the state, including professors from SHSU and other prominent universities in Texas, in five facilitated sessions, each consisting of five different workshops per session.

The purpose of the workshops is to allow students to “actively participate and learn about ways in which they can better understand and communicate with others in the diverse world we live in,” McDonough said.
Regular registration is open for all SHSU students, faculty, staff, and members of the surrounding community until Feb. 20.

Registration is free for SHSU students who register early (before Feb. 10) and $20 for regular registration (after that date). The cost for non-SHSU students is $35 for early registration, $45 for regular registration (until Feb. 19) and $50 for late registration (Feb. 20-23).

The cost includes five meals, entertainment, prizes, workshops, a T-shirt and much more.

For more information on this conference or other events sponsored by the Office of MISS, call 936.294.DVST (3878) or e-mail


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Nominations Sought For Service, Distinguished Awards

The SHSU Alumni Association is seeking nominations for Bearkat graduates who have either made significant contributions to their communities or have distinguished themselves through their personal and professional achievements for its annual service, distinguished alumni and outstanding young alumni awards.

Nominations for the Service Awards are due by Feb. 16, and Distinguished Alumni and Outstanding Young Alumni nominations are due by March 30.

As many as six alumni are eligible to receive the Service Award, which recognizes SHSU alumni, faculty, staff, administrators and friends who have “made significant contributions to Sam Houston State University, exemplifying the university’s motto, ‘The Measure of Life is its Service,’ according to the nomination form.

“The highest honor” the association and university can bestow upon alumni, the Distinguished Alumni award recognizes graduates or former students who “have made significant contributions to SHSU and/or society, and thus have brought honor and distinction to our university,” the nomination form said.

The Outstanding Young Alumni Award is given to one individual based on criteria as the Distinguished Alumni Award, except the recipient must be under 40 years of age.

Any individual or group may submit a nomination for an award.

Nomination forms, with a complete list of award criteria, are available online at and should be returned to the SHSU Office of Alumni Relations, in the Visitor Center, or by mail to P.O. Box 2022, Huntsville, Texas 77341-2022.

Nominations received after the deadline will not be considered; however, the forms will remain on file for consideration the following year.

For more information, contact the Alumni Relations Office at 936.294.1841 or


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COBA To Teach ‘Dos,’ Don’ts’ Of Resume Writing

The College of Business Administration will give students the “dos and don’ts for effective resumes and cover letters,” with two workshops on Tuesday (Feb. 6) and Feb. 12.

The Feb. 6 workshop, conducted by Career Services, will be held from 2-3 p.m. in the Mafrige Auditorium, located in the Smith-Hutson Business Building.

“COBA events, such as Business Career Fairs, Meet the Firms Night, Employer Foyer Showcases, Dress for Success fashion shows and Resume Writing Workshops, are all ‘extras’ we give our students to help them accomplish their employment goals, in addition to their academic goals,” said Margaret Quarles, senior assistant to the dean.

The Feb. 12 workshop, which will be held from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the Mafrige Auditorium, will be conducted by management and marketing professor Charles Capps.

Both workshops are open to all SHSU students and alumni.

For more information, contact Quarles at 936.294.4997 or


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Harvard Physicist To Give Lecture

Harvard University physicist David Ward will discuss his research on the field of polaritonics on Thursday (Feb. 8).

The lecture, “Adventures in Light Scattering: From THz Polaritonics to Resonance Rayleigh Scattering Microscopy and Spectroscopy of Single Nanoparticles,” will be held from 3:30-4:30 p.m. in Farrington Building Room 209.

Ward received his bachelor’s degree in physics from the College of Charleston in 1999 and his doctorate in physical chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2005.

Currently, he is working in the field of single molecule spectroscopy with Sunney Xie at Harvard University and theoretical aspects of negative refractive materials with Kevin J. Webb at Purdue University, according to Ward’s Web site.

For more information, contact Barry Friedman, in the physics department, at or 936.294.1604.


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Workshop To Bring Mythology, Fairy Tales To The Opera

SHSU students who are new to the field of opera will tell “Tall Tales,” performing selections from tragic and comic works, during the spring Opera Workshop on Friday and Saturday (Feb. 9-10).

Performances will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the Recital Hall.

“Tall Tales” will include scenes inspired by mythology and fairy tales, such as Jacques Offenbach’s “Orpheus in the Underworld,” performed in English; Carl Maria von Weber’s “Oberon,” performed in Italian; Henry Purcell’s “Dido and Aeneas,” performed in English; Engelbert Humperdinck’s “Hänsel und Gretel,” performed in English; and Christoph Willibald von Gluck’s “Orfeo ed Euridice (Orpheus and Euridice),” performed in Italian.

To facilitate the audience’s understanding of the scenes, especially those in a foreign language, the entire production will be accompanied by a surtitle presentation. Even the the scenes in English will have the texts projected above the screen, according to Dawn Padula, voice faculty member and opera workshop co-director.

“This just helps the audience to really understand the full gist of what the singers are saying and helps them to understand the story all that much more,” she said.

The production by the opera workshop, which includes students new to the process who learned the basics of stage craft and movement in the fall, is a culmination of the work those students did during the second half of the fall semester in not only learning the craft but creating their own show, Padula said.

“We selected the theme of ‘Tall Tales: An evening of opera featuring scenes inspired by mythology and fairy tales’ in that much of the operatic literature that encompasses this theme lends itself nicely to younger voices,” she said. “It's also a theme that these students can really relate to...we've all studied Greek Mythology, and I know that we've all been told fairy tales.”

Admission is $8 for adults, $5 for non-SHSU students and senior citizens, and free for SHSU students with a Bearkat identification card.

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


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Alumni Scholarship Deadline Approaching

Scholarship applications for the more than 15 awarded by the SHSU Alumni Association for the fall 2007 and spring 2008 semesters are due by March 2.

The association awards scholarships annually for a variety of classifications, majors and extracurricular activities for currently-enrolled SHSU students, as well as incoming freshmen.

Some of the scholarships available include the Lee Andrew Franke scholarship, for elementary education majors; Victoria Frels Memorial scholarship, for English majors; SHSU Alumni Legacy, for students with a family member who graduated from SHSU; and the Dr. Charles A. Schmidt Fine Arts, for a fine arts major, among many others.

Association scholarships are provided through contributions from alumni and friends.

Scholarship applications are available on the Alumni Relations Web site, at

Applications and supporting documentation will not be accepted after March 2 and can be turned in at the Alumni Relations Office, in the Visitor Center, or by mail to the Sam Houston State University Alumni Association, Attention: Scholarship Committee, P.O. Box 2022, Huntsville, Texas, 77341-2022.


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Lutterschmidt, Neudorf Receive $290,000 Grant

Thirty-two students from across the nation will be the beneficiaries of a $290,000 grant biological sciences associate professors Bill Lutterschmidt and Diane Neudorf recently received.

The grant, which was a renewal from the National Science Foundation’s Research Experiences for Undergraduate program, will allow eight undergraduates per year, 32 total in the four years the grant allows for, to visit SHSU and conduct field research during the summer, according to Neudorf.

“We recruit students from all over the country, though some come from Sam Houston as well, who are interested in pursuing careers in research in biology,” Neudorf said. “The purpose is to encourage students to pursue these types of careers.”

As part of the program, students spend 10 weeks over the summer working on a research project with a SHSU faculty mentor at the university’s Center for Biological Field Studies, located on Fish Hatchery Road in Huntsville, observing and collecting animals in their natural habitat.

Students also attend weekly seminars, which discuss things such as being a professional biologist, ethics in science, collecting data and statistics, as well as take field trips to the coast to collect organisms, the zoo and museums.

At the end of the project, students display their research through a poster presentation in the Lowman Student Center. In addition, many go on to present their published findings at national conferences, Neudorf said.

“It’s an excellent program,” Neudorf said. “It’s very intensive; we keep them busy.”

The grant provides living expenses for the students selected to participate in the REU project, including room and board and a paid stipend. Students also get course credit for their work, which is new this year, and help their faculty mentors with their own research.

The NSF had previously given Lutterschmidt and Neudorf a three-year grant for the Research Experiences for Undergraduate program.


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Watts Recognized For Professional Writing

Richard Watts, director for research and doctoral studies for counseling education, recently received the 2006 Professional Writing Award from the Texas Counseling Association.

The award was presented to Watts during the annual TCA Conference in November, held in San Antonio.

The TCA Professional Professional Writing Award is given to a TCA member whose writing has helped further the counseling profession.

Presently in his 13th year as a Counselor Educator and his second at SHSU, Watts has published over 90 professional publications, including 70 journal articles and book chapters, and five books.


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Legal Services Awarded For Project’s Excellence

For the second time in five years, the SHSU Students’ Legal Services has been named the recipient of the 2007 Award for Special Project Excellence during the annual University Student Legal Services Association conference.

The award is based upon a project that must be unique and exemplary and furthers the mission of Students’ Legal Services and is given to the project that not only benefits students in a unique way but also one that goes beyond the normal evaluated services offered to students within the university association, according to James W. Gibson, SHSU’s student legal adviser.

SHSU’s award-winning project was a 24-page compilation of legal resources available to students that allows them to pick a law topic and then go immediately to an Internet site for authoritative Texas law and information that applies to that specific topic.

“The compilation contains topics from AIDS to wills, and this large coverage made the project both unique and exemplary,” Gibson said. “The project was also deemed to further the mission of Students’ Legal Services by providing quality, authoritative resources for students with legal problems 24 hours a day and seven days a week.”

The USLSA is made up of 21 universities spanning the western United States from Texas to Oregon.


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Order Of Omega To Induct 20

Approximately 20 students and staff members will be inducted into the SHSU chapter of Order of Omega on Thursday (Feb. 8).

Inductees include Carneithia Anthony, Jessica Brash, Kristi Brown, Elizabeth Escamilla, Kimberly Fregia, Heather Hardee, Kaitlyn Hartley, Rachel Hurst, Justin Garza, Emilia Kobina, Lindsay McDougald, Brooke Poston, Jeremy Rogers, Ysabel Sarabia, Peter Solana and Andrea Trabanino.

In addition, honorary members who will be inducted into the organization include Angie Burns, Brandon Cooper, Leah Mulligan and Tiffany Flenoy.

The National Order of Omega is an honorary organization for members of Greek letter social fraternities and sororities. The organization, which was reinstalled on the SHSU campus this spring, includes all Greek Councils, including multicultural Greek organizations and the National Pan-Hellenic Council.

To qualify for membership, an individual must be of junior standing, have been an active member of his/her organization for at least one year, and have a minimun of a 2.5 grade point average.

In addition, new members are selected based on eight criteria: character; scholarship; fraternity or sorority activities and offices; Interfraternity Council, Panhellenic, or Greek Council activities and offices; campus activities and involvement; and community service.

Current executive board members are Kristi Brown, president; Justin Garza, vice president; Rachel Hurst, treasurer; Andrea Trabanino, secretary; Elizabeth Escamilla, membership chair; and Jeremy Rogers, public/university relations chair.


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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. 4, 2007
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