SHSU Update For Week Of July 12



Exhibit To Celebrate Annexation of Texas

The Sam Houston Memorial Museum will “celebrate 150 years of Texas statehood” by giving Texas history buffs a glimpse of some of the state’s original artifacts and documents during an exhibit beginning July 24.

“Annexation: Celebrating 150 Years Of Texas Statehood,” in the Katy and E. Don Walker, Sr., Education Center Exhibition Gallery, is a traveling exhibition created by the Texas Capitol Visitors Center and produced by Humanities Texas, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

"Annexation" tells the story of Texas as a Mexican colony and Republic, its campaign to join the United States, the vote for annexation and the consequences of that vote, according to museum curator of exhibits Casey Roon.

“The annexation of Texas as the 28th member of the United States of America had a profound impact on world events and the course of democracy in the 19th and 20th centuries,” Roon said. “Texas at that time included what is now parts of Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, and Oklahoma.

“By annexing Texas, the U.S. grew and the hopes of reaching the Pacific coast pushed on. The annexation of Texas also meant war with Mexico,” she said. “The victory over Mexico ultimately gave the U.S. the land from ‘sea to shining sea.’”

The exhibit includes photographs of historic documents, daguerreotypes, sketches, artifacts and concise texts, which invite “audiences to become more familiar with one of the defining moments of Texas and U.S. history, according to Roon.

Panels include “The Old 300,” the revolution, quest for statehood, Lamar’s presidency, Sam Houston, Texas as a nation, U.S. debates over Texas, the Mexican viewpoint, slavery and annexation, the Mexican war, Indians of Texas, land and power, immigrants and domestic life.

Admission is free for the exhibit, which will run through Aug. 21.

For more information about viewing hours or to arrange group visits, contact Roon at 936.294.3292.


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Sale Of Late Professor’s Work Benefits Endowment

SHSU art students will benefit from works by the late SHSU art professor Kenneth Zonker currently being sold by the art department.

The summer art sale includes paintings, prints, drawings and collages by the professor, who died in 2002.

“After Ken died the Zonker Family set up the endowment in his name,” said Debbie Harper, art audio/visual librarian. “Sales from the Zonker art collection benefit the endowment.”

Pieces range from $20 to $200. Proceeds benefit the Kenneth Zonker Art Endowment, which was established in 2003.

Zonker, who grew up in Venezuela and returned there throughout his adult life, taught at SHSU for 37 years. He died of cancer at age 61.
The Zonker Summer Art Sale will be held through July 17.

Pieces are sold at the Gaddis Geeslin Gallery by appointment, which can be made by contacting Harper at 936.294.1317 or


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Planetarium To Give ‘Extreme’ July Presentations

The physics department will continue its journey into outer space in July with showings of its two planetarium series programs that point out the summer constellations beginning June 13.

In addition to showcasing such summer constellations as Cygnus, Lyra, Scorpio and Sagittarius, the program will include two different video presentations at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.

“Two Small Pieces of Glass,” a “journey through the history of modern astronomy from the perspective of two youths who learn about the different types of telescopes and who invented them,” will be held at 3 p.m. that day, followed by an exploration of the “most extreme planets ever discovered” during “Extreme Planets,” at 7 p.m.

“You think Venus is the hottest planet or Jupiter the biggest? Think again!” said Michael Prokosch, physics department staff laboratory assistant. “’Extreme Planets’ shows you how remarkably different the over 200 and counting planets discovered outside our own solar system can be.”

The series, designed to show attendees which constellations, stars and planets they can expect to see in the upcoming weeks, will be held in the planetarium, located in Farrington Building Room 102.

The final summer showings of “Two Small Pieces of Glass” will be held on July 20 and 27, also at 3 p.m.; and other showings of “Extreme Planets” will be held July 17, 20, 24, 27 and 31, all at 7 p.m.

The planetarium seats up to 29 visitors and includes a dome that is approximately 18 feet in diameter and more than 20 feet high in the center.

For more information on current show times for the planetarium or the observatory, as well as a complete list of dates for the summer, call 936.294.3664, e-mail Prokosch at or visit the Planetarium Wikipage at


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SAM Center To Host Study, Grad School Workshops

The Student Advising and Mentoring Center will offer a summer version of its study skills workshops, while helping students prepare for the next step in their academic careers, with three workshops beginning Monday (July 13).

The second study skills summer workshop, which helps students acclimate to the different, and sometimes more challenging, atmosphere classes take on during the summer, will be held through the week of Aug. 3.

The four, one-hour sessions will introduce study skills, as well as discuss procrastination, time management, reading textbooks, test taking and stress management.

Workshops will be held at a variety of times to accommodate student schedules and will be held in the SAM Center, located in College of Humanities and Social Sciences Building Room 170.

On July 21, the center will help students prepare for post-graduate programs during a Graduate School Information Meeting from 4-5 p.m.
The session will focus on financial aid, organizing the application and the grad school timeline in the SAM Center.

Space is limited, and students are encouraged to call or stop by the SAM Center to sign up.

Finally, students can review for the graduate school entrance exams with a two-day workshop on July 24-25.

The GRE/GMAT Prep Sessions will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. on Friday and from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Saturday in the SAM Center.
Spaces are available on a first-come, first-served basis; therefore, students must sign up to participate.

For more information, or to register for the GRE/MAT Prep workshop, contact Candi Harris, SAM Center staff associate, at 936.294.4628, and for information on the other workshops, call 936.294.4444 or e-mail


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Professor Analyzes Autobiographies For First Book

The first book by assistant professor of French Madalina Akli looks at the autobiographies of three famous French authors and determines that because “calendar-based order, traditionally associated with autobiography, fails to provide” coherence, “readers must create a sense of coherence at another level by using their conceptual resources.”

“Conventional and Original Metaphors in French Autobiography,” published by Peter Lang Publishers, looks at Jean-Paul Sartre’s “The Words,” Georges Perec’s “W, or The Memory of Childhood” and Nathalie Sarraute’s “Childhood.”

“In it, I bring together cognitive linguistics and life writing studies to demonstrate that literary creations are nothing more than the exploitation of conventional, everyday metaphors,” Akli said. “I show that potentially everyone, within or outside a given cultural frame, can connect to creative texts through metaphors.

“They offer free access to these texts, simply because they are metaphors we live by,” she said.

Akli said she is interested in the autobiographical genre because “it allows one to travel in time and in the history of modern meaning of the self.

“The autobiographical tradition has a relevance to our lives because of its capacity to furnish us with models and mirrors that can help to accept or to transform our lives as individuals relevant to the world,” she said.

The 271-page book is available for $77.95 on the Peter Lang Publishing Group Web site.


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Nelson Ushers In TCA Leadership Role

Professional counselors from all over the state who lead regional and local organizations attended a training session by Judy Nelson, assistant professor in the department of educational leadership and counseling, during the Summer Leadership Training Institute June 26-28 in Austin.

The session kicked off Nelson’s role as Texas Counseling Association president and prepared counselors for a year of “Dreams, Direction, and Dedication,” the theme for this year’s Texas Counseling Association’s Annual Professional Growth Conference, which will be held Nov. 11-14 in Dallas.

The leadership training included keynote speakers Marcheta Evans, the president-elect of the American Counseling Association, who emphasized that ordinary people have the potential to be extraordinary leaders; and Michael Hoffman, who presented leadership tips in a “most humorous and engaging presentation;” as well as break-out sessions for state leaders of the five regions, 31 chapters, 12 divisions, and 17 committees that make up the Texas Counseling Association.

The sessions included information on finance and budgets, planning for the year, marketing, and the responsibilities of being a board member of an organization, according to Nelson.

Sam Houston State University was well represented at the event, with attending faculty and graduates including Chi Sing Li, Bill Mullener, Le’Ann Solomon, Pam Monk and Pedra An.


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Alpha Chi Members Present, Receive Scholarships

Three members of SHSU’s Alpha Chi honor society were recognized with scholarships and gave presentations during the organization’s national convention.

Alpha Chi president James Deveau, a finance major; Irving Ray, a music education major; and Dominic Pallone, a criminal justice major, gave presentations at the Alpha Chi National College Honor Scholarship Society Convention in Indianapolis.

Also during the convention, Ray was awarded a scholarship, and Texas Omicron chapter sponsor Patricia Williams, who was reelected to the National Council for another four years, conducted the sponsor workshop.

The sponsor workshop, which included faculty members from across the country, included discussions on offering worthwhile, creative chapter activities; increasing membership; providing and advertising available scholarships; and fellowships at the local, regional, and national levels; increasing convention participation; and recognizing outstanding students both on campus and in the community, according to Williams.

In addition, Deveau and Pallone both received $250 local chapter scholarships during the annual Alpha Chi banquet, which was attended by approximately 60 students, parents, and faculty at members.

Also at the banquet, Jeannette Wieser, a retired faculty member who taught at SHSU for 33 years, received an honorary membership, and she briefly told about how her parents, especially her father, instilled a love for education in all the children, according to Williams.


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Calendar Information Sought For Summer, Fall

The Communications Office is now collecting information on campus events for its summer and fall calendar pages.

Departmental calendars or events can be sent to or or faxed to 294.1834. Please include the date, location and time of the event, as well as a brief description and a contact person.

Information collected for the Today@Sam calendar pages, at, is used by various media outlets, as well as the Communications Office for news stories and releases.

All information, including 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.

For more information, call 936.294.1836.


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Send Update Items Here

Information for the SHSU Update can be sent to the Office of Communications electronically at or to any of the media contacts listed below.

Please include the date, location and time of the event, as well as a brief description and a contact person.

All information for news stories should be sent to the office at least a week in advance to give the staff ample time to make necessary contacts and write the story.

For electronic access to SHSU news see the Communications Web page Today@Sam.



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SHSU Media Contacts: Bruce Erickson, Julia May, Jennifer Gauntt
July 10, 2009
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to




This page maintained by SHSU's Communications Office
Director: Bruce Erickson
Assistant Director: Julia May
Writer: Jennifer Gauntt
Located in the 115 Administration Building
Telephone: 936.294.1836; Fax: 936.294.1834

Please send comments, corrections, news tips to



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