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SHSU Update For Week Of July 15


Houston Fifth Ward Students Visit SHSU

fifth ward students
Thirteen Houston high school students toured the SHSU campus and spoke with various department representatives to get a view of college life on June 21 as part of a federal Public Housing Safety Initiative.

SHSU welcomed 13 Houston high school students and their three adult Houston Housing Authority sponsors to campus to visit various departments and see what college life is all about on June 21.

The visit, part of the federal Public Housing Safety Initiative, exposed at-risk youth from three housing communities in Houston's Fifth Ward to the prospect of making a better life for themselves than their backgrounds might otherwise suggest, according to associate professor of criminal justice Victoria Titterington, who is involved with the PHSI program.

“By the end of the day, they were more curious than ever about the prospect of going to college, and for a number of them, SHSU seems particularly appealing,” she said.

As part of the trip the students were given free SHSU items from the Visitor Center for each student and chaperone, viewed the university’s new orientation video and were taken on a campus tour that included stops at the George J. Beto Criminal Justice Center.

“Watching actual SHSU students interacting and seeing our beautiful campus and impressive facilities was exciting for these students,” Titterington said.

In addition, they were taken to the Chemistry and Forensic Science Building, where Sarah Kerrigan, Joan Bytheway and Kelsey Simon offered forensic science demonstrations of drug testing, fingerprinting and crime victim identification from skeletal remains.

“This was arguably the highlight of their tour,” Titterington said. “They would have happily remained there to ask questions and learn more indefinitely.”


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Student Organization, Adviser Recognized As ‘Super’

The SHSU chapter of the Council for Exceptional Children was recently awarded as a “Super Chapter,” while its adviser was recognized with the Kathleen Varner Service Award, by the Texas Council for Exceptional Children during its state conference in June.

The Super Chapter Award selection was based upon the chapter's submission of a competitive application packet that required three major criteria of activities, events and participation, according to SCEC president James Williams.

“The chapter met seven of those nine criteria due to its extremely active and participatory nature, which includes its annual conference with continued attendance numbers of 300-400 professionals and students,” Williams said.

In addition, the chapter's faculty adviser, Cynthia Simpson, who is an assistant professor in the language, literacy and special populations department, was selected to receive “one of the greatest honors TCEC can bestow,” the Kathleen Varner Service Award.

“Dr. Simpson's selection was based on a competitive application process in which a parent of a child with a disability, the chapter president, and a fellow faculty member submitted three letters of recommendation,” Williams said. “This award takes on added significance in that I was told by the selection committee that some years no award is given due to a lack of a truly deserving candidate, and when given it’s usually to a professional with even more years of experience than Dr. Simpson.”


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Lesesne Wins ALAN Award

Teri Lesesne, professor of library science, was recently selected as the winner of the 2007 ALAN Award.

The Assembly on Literature for Adolescents (ALAN), an independent assembly of the National Council of Teachers of English, gives out this award each year to an individual who has made significant contributions to the field of young adult literature.

She will accept the award at the ALAN Breakfast, which will take place during the NCTE conference in New York City on Nov. 17.

Lesesne, author of “Making the Match” and “Naked Reading,” is a renowned advocate of Young Adult literature, who is an active leader in ALAN, NCTE and a host of other professional organizations.

Past ALAN Award honorees includes Marc Aronson, Virginia Monseau, Jerry Spinelli, Jacqueline Woodson, Patty Campbell and M.E. Kerr.


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Students Seek Family Volunteers For Program

Two SHSU clinical psychology doctoral students are seeking families with children between the ages of 6 and 12 who are separated, divorcing or divorced for a family transitions program.

Family transitions is a six-week program designed to help families with children navigate their way through the changes brought on from a divorce.

The program is offered free of charge, and participants who cooperate in research examining how well the program works will be compensated by up to $50.

For more information, or to volunteer, call Katherine or Leah at 936.294.3376 and leave a message with your name and telephone number.


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Group To Host Professional Conference

Sam Houston Association for the Education of Young Children will provide a professional development opportunity for people in the Brazos Valley area who work with young children during a conference on July 28.

Check-in for the annual conference will be held at 7:30 a.m., with the conference itself being held from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in College Station.

The training opportunity for early childhood professionals will include 12 breakout sessions, from three different tracts, in which attendees can choose from, as well as musical keynote speaker Sara Hickman.

Hickman, a motivational speaker from Austin, is a humanitarian and musician who has created award-winning children’s albums.

Conference participants will receive a certificate and six hours of professional development credit.
The event is open to anyone who is interested in the care and education of young children.

Cost for the event ranges for SHAEYC members and students from free for the SHAEYC’s student members, $5 for SHAEYC non-student members, $20 for college students with an ID, and $25 for non-students and non-members. In addition, group pricing is available from $100-$200 for groups of 10.

The registration deadline is July 23.

For more information, contact Maggie McGuire, assistant professor in the language, literacy and special populations department, at


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Tripp Lectures At ‘Cultural Kaleidoscope’ Conference

Paula Tripp, assistant professor of family and consumer sciences, recently presented on three research projects during the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences’ 98th annual conference in Reno, Nev.

Tripp’s presentations included the “Importance of FCS Distance Education Courses to Texas Certification Students,” which was also researched by FCS chair Janis White and Texas Woman’s University professor Joyce Armstrong; “Online FCS Course Delivery: Meeting the Needs of University Students;” and “Careers in FCS Higher Education.”

The “America’s Cultural Kaleidoscope: Challenges and Opportunities” conference, held June 21-24, included approximately 1,000 professionals and students in the FCS and allied fields from across the country to present research, devise strategies and create new opportunities related to the dramatic changes in America’s demographics and many other complex cultural challenges facing individuals, families and communities today, according to Tripp.

Among the topics discussed were the challenges and opportunities of multicultural education, services and programs to assist older Americans and strategies to improve the health and wellness of Americans.

Founded in 1909, the AAFCS has over 8,000 members from 52 affiliates across the United States and Puerto Rico.


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Ag Alumni To Gather For Dinner July 31

The SHSU Agriculture Alumni will raise money for the coming year’s activities during its annual dinner and gathering on July 31.

The event, held in conjunction with the Agricultural Science Professional Development Conference, will be held at 6 p.m. at Traildust Steakhouse, at 2300 East Lamar Blvd. in Arlington.

Dinner will include sirloin, chicken fried steak or chicken, along with drinks and adult beverages.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $10 for children ages 6 to 13 and free for children under 6 and may be purchased in advance at the door. However, because an approximate headcount is needed, attendees are encouraged to reserve tickets by July 26 by calling 936.294.1216 and then paying for them at the door.

Live and silent auctions will also be held during the event. Those who wish to donate items to support the ag alumni and department may do so by calling Greg Shipp, ag alumni president, at 936.435.8221 or 936.438.0974.

For more information, call the department of agricultural and industrial sciences at 936.294.1216.


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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
July 13, 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