Today@Sam Article

SHSU Update For Week of April 3

April 1, 2016
SHSU Media Contact: Tammy Parrett





HAVEN Program To Provide GLBT Training 

HAVENSam Houston State University’s HAVEN program will offer students, faculty and staff an opportunity to attend a GLBT training course on April 21 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Annex 129.

The HAVEN program honors diversity and promotes an inclusive campus culture by providing education and training to the university community on issues related to sexual and gender identities. 

The program also endeavors to create and sustain a network of informed, supportive people who work toward the elimination of stereotypes, myths, and misconceptions, thereby reducing homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, and heterosexism.

The training prepares students, faculty and staff members to serve as a HAVEN location by providing them with the resources necessary to help those seeking clarification around issues of sexual diversity. Participants must be supportive of the LGBTIQ community and willing to address all viewpoints regarding sexuality, including those opposed to homosexuality, in an educating, informative and non-threatening manner.

Those interested in participating should register by sending an email with the subject “Register me for GLBT 101 please,” to by April 14.

For more information, contact Selina Guerra, staff psychologist at the Counseling Center, at 936.294.1720.


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Golf Tournament To Raise Funds For Breast Cancer

The Sam Houston State University chapter of Zeta Tau Alpha will continue its fight against breast cancer by hosting the 16th annual Crown Classic fundraiser golf tournament on April 16 at Panorama Golf Club in Conroe at 1 p.m.

The fundraiser was established as a way to get members of the community involved while supporting the fight against breast cancer, according to philanthropy chair Cheyenne Davis.

“Last year this fundraiser raised around $18,000, all of which we were able to donate to our philanthropy, which is putting an end to breast cancer,” Davis said.

Tickets are $75 for students and $100 for non-students.

In addition, sponsorships are available at three levels: courage ($250), hope ($500) and strength ($1,000), which will provide donors with additional advertising opportunities.

Lunch is included with registration and there will also be a raffle and a silent auction at the event.

Those interested must register by April 4 and can do so by contacting any member of Zeta Tau Alpha.

For more information, contact Davis at


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Students To Give String, Clarinet Chamber Music Recitals

The Sam Houston State University School of Music will host performances by SHSU music students on Tuesday and Wednesday (April 5-6) at 7:30 p.m. in the Gaertner Performing Arts Center Recital Hall. 

Students currently enrolled in associate professor of violin and chair of string studies Javier Pinell’s chamber music studio class will perform in small groups of 2-4, according to Pinell on Tuesday.

“The program will include masterworks written for string and woodwind combinations ranging from the classical to contemporary musical periods,” Pinell said. “This is an excellent opportunity to enjoy the wonderful repertoire written for this genre.”

The following evening, students enrolled in professor of clarinet Patricia Card and instructor Andrea Harrell’s clarinet studio classes will perform in several clarinet trios and quartets.

“The literature is a wonderful mix of contemporary and traditional compositions,” Card said. “The first work is ‘Rhosymedre’ by English composer Ralph Vaungh Williams, which was originally composed for organ but has been arranged for the clarinet family.”

Both recitals are free and open to the public.

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


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Graduate Student To Debut Film At Symposium

Jordan Ong, a graduate student at Sam Houston State University, will invite audiences to some mid-day “magic” for a viewing of his thesis film “Magic Medieval Masquerade” on Saturday (April 9) at 10 a.m. at SHSU-The Woodlands Center Auditorium. The screening is part of The Woodlands Center Student Research Symposium.

“Magic Medieval Masquerade” is the culmination of Ong’s work as the first student to graduate with a degree in SHSU’s Master of Arts in digital media program.

When SHSU offered the fusion master’s degree that Jordan had been looking for in the new frontier of digital media, it opened a world of creativity, and he was able to combine his classical training and technologies used for electronic composition to create film and new media scores, he said. 

He directed and produced the film, which is about the Texas Renaissance Festival. He also composed the music, edited the sound and color, interviewed 40 subjects, and oversaw every aspect of the film production.

The Woodlands Center is located at 3380 College Park Drive in The Woodlands.

The viewing is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact The Woodlands Center at 936.294.5000.


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Panel To Provide Information On World Views

For the second year in a row, the Secular Student Alliance will team up with Cru@Sam to host “World Views Panel: a Q&A Session about Religion with SHSU Students” on April 11 from 7:30-9:30 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Theater. 

The event is designed to provide students who are curious about different worldviews with an opportunity to ask questions about various religions or thoughts in a safe environment.

The panel will be comprised of students from the Secular Student Alliance, Cru@Sam, Alternative Way of Life, and the Catholic Student Center.

“Ultimately, our goal is to raise awareness about religious diversity on campus and provide a place for people to ask questions without pressure or debate,” said Rebekah Scholz, Cru@Sam president.

The event is free and open to the public. 

For more information, contact the SSA at or Cru@Sam at


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Artist To Spread Awareness Of Autism, Art

Grant ManierThe Sam Houston State University Department of Residence Life will celebrate National Autism Awareness Month and Arbor Day by hosting “Autism and Art” on Monday (April 4) at 6:30 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Theater. 

Grant Manier is a high-functioning autistic artist who incorporates the idea of “reduce, reuse and recycle” into his work by using recycled paper to create colored and textured “coolages.”

“I feel Grant’s story and accomplishments can provide inspiration and proof that barriers are present to break through and that regardless of stereotypes or expectations from society people can overcome and create success in their own way,” said residence hall director Will Avery, who organized the event.

The presentation will include Manier and his mother speaking on both autism awareness and the importance of recycling.

“With April being National Autism Awareness Month as well as the month that celebrates Arbor Day, I want students to gain education on various topics,” Avery said. “People should not think any lower or less of anyone with any disorder, but should instead look for ways to spread awareness and promote equality.

“This world is the only one we have and we continue to, essentially, ruin it,” Avery said. “Grant’s message will hopefully reach the students and inform them of how important recycling is and how there is a need to be more resourceful with materials.”

Manier’s artwork will be on display for viewing and purchase after the event.

The event is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Avery at 936.294.2211.


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Wellness Works Day To Promote Health

The Sam Houston State University Staff Council will celebrate National Public Health Week by hosting Wellness Works Day on Friday (April 8).

The day’s events will kick off at the Recreational Sports Center with “Get Active at the RSC” from 7-8:30 a.m., during which faculty and staff are invited on a three-loop run–or one-loop walk–on the campus walking trail. They are also welcome to use the facility in lieu of walking outside.

Running and walking groups will leave the RSC at 7:15, so participants are encouraged to arrive early. They will also receive a free T-shirt and other giveaways.

During the Nutrition Workshop, held from 10-11 a.m. in the Lowman Student Center Room 110, Student Health Center programming coordinator Lisa Clarkson will present information on how to eat for total wellness. 

The Wellness Works Open House will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Health Building conference room. Representatives from a number of departments and organizations including SHSU’s Department of Human Resources, Employee Assistance Program, Recreational Sports, Staff Council, Dining Services, Health Select of Texas, and State of Texas Dental will be in attendance to speak with on various topics of health and wellness. 

The day’s events will close with a Mindfulness Workshop, held in the Student Services Annex Building Chapel Room. Drew Miller, assistant vice president of Student Services and executive director of Counseling and Health Services, will share tips on relieving stress and practicing mindfulness.

Sessions are eligible for external credit through Talent Management. 

For more information, contact Melissa Fadler, Staff Council staff development chair, at


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Immigration Attorney To 'Get Real'

The Sam Houston State University College of Criminal Justice will invite immigration attorney Emma Cantu to speak at its Real Talk with CJ lecture series on Tuesday (April 5) at 2 p.m. in the Criminal Justice Center’s Hazel B. Kerper Courtroom.

Cantu is an immigration attorney who assists clients facing deportation from the United States.

The vast majority of Cantu’s clients come from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and are escaping gang violence and poverty in their homeland. Some of her clients are among the waves of children that crossed the Mexican border alone over the last two summers.

“It’s sad; there isn’t a lot of relief for them,” Cantu said. “It is hard to meet the standards for asylum. You feel so bad for the things they have gone through in their lives. There is a lot of work to do, but very few of these applications will be successful.”

There are several different ways that immigrants are targeted for removal by the U.S. government, including turning themselves in, being caught at the border, or following criminal court proceedings. Among the petitions that may be filed to contest deportation are an asylum, where a person faces persecution in their home country; longtime residency, where immigrants may apply for permanent residency status after five to ten years of living in the U.S. without significant criminal offenses; and through marriage to a U.S. citizen.

Cantu also has worked on deportation cases involving clients from Middle Eastern countries, who were targeted for deportation after overstaying their visas.

While Cantu focuses on deportation removal cases, there are many specialties within immigration law. These include employment cases as well as petitions for residency and visas.

The lecture is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Beth Kuhles, publications coordinator for the College of Criminal Justice, at 936.294.4425.


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Today@Sam Seeks Experts, Story Ideas

Are you an expert in a topic might be of interest to reporters? Or even a unique topic? Would you like to have your research interests highlighted or discuss your expertise with reporters seeking interviewees?

The university Communications Office is collecting information and story ideas for its ongoing projects, including the online SHSU Experts Guide, the SHSU home page and Today@Sam. 

The SHSU Experts Guide was established as a resource for the media, who turn to university experts lists for potential interviewees for news stories. Faculty who are interested in being a part of the university's database of experts can submit their biographical and personal information, as well as their areas of expertise, through the Experts Guide Submission Form available online at

Other story ideas, both news and features on faculty or student research and accomplishments can be sent to or For news stories, please include the date, location and time of the event, as well as a brief description and a contact person.

All information, including news story ideas and update items for Today@Sam, should be sent a minimum of a week in advance of the event in order to make necessary contacts and write a story. Feature story ideas for the SHSU home page ("sliders") should be sent a minimum of two months in advance.

To see a full list of the Today@Sam submission guidelines, or to access submission forms for news and feature stories or hometown releases, visit

For more information, call 936.294.1836.

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