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Today @ Sam

SHSU Update For Week Of March 3

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‘Real Talk’ To Feature Sheriff’s Administrator

After nearly 27 years with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office, Lt. Dan Norris has risen through the ranks of the fifth largest sheriff’s agency in Texas, serving in patrol, as a detective, in internal affairs, and in administration.

Dan NorrisNorris, will return to campus on Tuesday (March 5), to discuss the challenges he has faced and the potential career opportunities in his field, during the College of Criminal Justice’s “Real Talk with CJ,” at 2 p.m. in the CJ Center’s Hazel B. Kerper Courtoom.

Norris began his career with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office in 1984 as a volunteer reserve deputy, officially joining the department in 1986, patrolling east Montgomery County, the toughest area in the county.

Since then he served as a detective in the burglary and theft division as well as in major crimes, where he has been involved in the investigation of about 150 murders and thousands of other cases; a sergeant in charge of the internal affairs division, wherein he discovered he wanted to pursue a career in managing and supervising; and a lieutenant heading up the criminal investigations division.

In 2004, Norris was tasked by Sheriff Tommy Gage for the administration office, where he reports directly to the sheriff and his Chief Deputy Randy McDaniel on public information requests, budgets, grants, policies, fleet accident reviews, and recruiting. As a public information officer, he interacts with the media to keep the community informed about major crimes and sheriff’s office initiatives.

“I make sure that the goals of the sheriff’s office and community policing efforts are conveyed to the community. After all, public relations is one of the pillars that make the community policing and problem solving philosophies work,” Norris said. “You can’t alienate the media. The media will not go away and it is important to develop a relationship with them to help keep the public better informed.”

During his eight year tenure in administration, Norris helped bring in and manage about $3.7 million in grants, equipping every patrol car in the department with in-car video recorders, and provided body armor and Tasers for the entire department, guns for the SWAT team and overtime special projects for deputies, such as targeted drunk driving, selective traffic enforcement of speeders and even reviving cold homicide cases.

He has revamped recruiting procedures to streamline hiring practices and redesigned, reviewed and updated the department’s policy manual. He also chairs the fleet accident review committee, which examines every accident that involves sheriff’s office vehicles and recommends disciplinary action when necessary.

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



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Seminar To Journey Into Science, Philosophy Intersection

Maria Botero, assistant professor of philosophy, will share her work and insights on “Chimpanzees from a Philosophical Perspective” on Tuesday (March 5).

Maria BoteroThe Honors 3332 Journeys Seminar presentation will begin at 5 p.m. in the Smith-Hutson Building's Haney Auditorium, in Room 186.

Botero’s discussion will focus on her work in primatology and the emerging questions about science, the mind, and living organisms.

One of the most common questions Botero said she is asked about her research is why a philosopher observes chimpanzees in Africa and if it’s really philosophy.

“I will talk about that experience as a way to illustrate how interdisciplinary work is possible,” Botero said. “I will describe my experience as a philosopher designing and conducting a study of six mother-infant chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) pairs from the Kasekela community at Gombe National Park, Tanzania; how this unique opportunity enabled me to look closely at the methods used in primatology and, at the same time, to enrich my philosophical analysis of central aspects of the mind, such as communication and the effects of the mother-infant interaction for the development of the primate mind.

“I hope this will provide students with an example, and the encouragement, to start thinking beyond their own disciplines,” she said.

Botero began exploring questions about science, the mind and living organisms as an undergraduate philosophy major in Bogotá, Colombia, and continued her studies in Canada. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Pontificia Universidad Javeriana, in Colombia, and her master’s and doctoral degrees from York University, in Canada.

As she began conducting studies in primatology, she was supported by the Jane Goodall Institute and the Milton and Ethel Harris Research Initiative at York University for the mother-infant chimpanzee study in Tanzania.

“This unique opportunity enabled me to look closely at the methods used in primatology and at the same time to enrich my philosophical analysis of central aspects of the mind, such as communication and the effects of the mother-infant interaction for the development of the primate mind,” she said. “I continue this interdisciplinary research in the psychology and philosophy program at Sam Houston State University.”

Her lecture, sponsored by the Elliott T. Bowers Honors College, is part of a class designed to show students what characteristics lead to success. It is open to the public.

For more information, contact instructor Patrick Lewis at 936.294.3397.



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Career Fair To Present Criminal Justice Opportunities

CJ career fairDozens of employers in law enforcement, corrections, victim services, forensic science and security services will be on hand to discuss potential jobs and internships on Wednesday (March 6) during the 2013 Criminal Justice Career Fair.

The fair will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Lowman Student Center Ballroom.

The career fair, which has attracted more than 40 agencies and 400 students and alumni in the past, allows graduates, students and alumni to meet recruiters for job and internship opportunities.

“Over the last four years of our career fair, the employers have set up interviews with several hundred of our students who they met at the fair,” said Holly Miller, associate dean for academic programs. “This is a great opportunity for our graduating undergraduates to make a good impression and obtain contacts and interviews.”

To capitalize on the opportunity, students are encouraged to dress professionally, bring copies of their resumes, and do research on companies before attending the event.

Among the preliminary list of those attending are police departments in Austin, Beaumont, Carrollton, College Station, Dallas, Houston, Irving, and San Antonio; Travis County and Walker County; Texas Department of Public Safety; Texas Parks and Wildlife; Federal Bureau of Investigation; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the United States Secret Service; Mothers Against Drunk Driving; and companies with private security openings.

Career Services will help students prepare for the fair on Monday (March 4), from 4-5 p.m. in the Criminal Justice Center’s Kerper Courtroom, where career counselor Michelle Meers will discuss how to approach agencies and recruiters, advantages of networking, resume-building tips, the career fair dress code and interviewing skills.

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



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Opera Workshop To Highlight Spanish ‘Zarzuela’

SHSU’s Opera Workshop will pay homage to Spanish zarzuela, a lyric-dramatic genre alternating between spoken and sung scenes, with their special Festival Inspiración presentation of “Escuchame Cantar!” (Hear me Sing) on Tuesday (March 5).

The evening of South American- and Mexican-inspired art song will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the James and Nancy Gaertner Performing Arts Center Recital Hall.

The concert will feature members of the Opera Workshop singing in Spanish, in conjunction with the collaborative piano program, and will be facilitated by faculty members from the foreign languages department, who will discuss the poetry upon which the songs are based, according to Rebecca Grimes, Opera Workshop director.

“This concert will not only highlight some wonderful classical composers, but also folk and classical poetry from Spain and Latin America,” Grimes said.

Among the many pieces that will be performed are “¿De dónde venís, amore?,” the Mexican folk song “El trobador,” and scenes from Spanish-language (or Spanish translations of) operas such as “El barbero de Sevilla,” “El cabo primero” and “El último Romantico.”

“This is an opportunity to introduce students and audience members to Spanish and Latin American classical song,” Grimes said. “Although this music has been around for centuries, American singers are not always familiar with the repertoire.

“All of the singers will be coaching with visiting artist and Spanish song specialist Mac McClure in preparation for the event,” she said. “Many of the students are of Latin American heritage and are enthusiastic about performing this music. This will be a wonderful opportunity for students to immerse themselves in this language and genre of music.”

Admission is free.

The concert is sponsored by SHSU and the City of Huntsville.

For more information, call the School of Music at 936.294.1360 or visit the Festival Inspiración website at http://www.shsu.edu/academics/music/festival-inspiracion/index.html.



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Company To Perform Flamenco For Festival Presentation

The SHSU dance department and Festival Inspiración will present an evening of dance and music with a Latin flair on Thursday (March 7), when they will welcome Solero Flamenco to campus.

Houston’s premier flamenco performance company will showcase the tradition and essence of the art of flamenco beginning at 8 p.m. in the James and Nancy Gaertner Performing Arts Center Concert Hall.

Known for their trademark passion and energy, founders and artistic directors Irma La Paloma and Jeremías García deliver an extensive repertoire of cante (song) and guitarra (guitar).

Their vocal and musical accompaniment provide the framework for the artistry of dancers Solangel "Lali" Calix and Edith Niño, lead percussionist Chris Howard and Solomon Garcia and Andrés Felix on cajón and palmas (both forms of percussion), according to Dionne Sparkman Noble, assistant professor of dance at SHSU.

The evening will include three sets in half hour blocks, which will feature alegrías, sevillanas and tangos.

“The meter—along with harmonic structures and melodies—characterizes flamenco rhythms, or ‘palos,’ and the structure and accentuations give flamenco its characteristic feel, or ‘soniquete,’” Noble said. “They are a fabulous Flamenco company, and we are extremely happy to welcome them to SHSU to share their art with the public.”

The audience will be welcome to stay for all three or come and go as they wish.

Solero Flamenco founded in 2011 the Houston Spanish and Flamenco Festival, a nonprofit collaboration with San Jacinto College South and the Consulate General of Spain.

Central to the festival is the mission “to facilitate understanding and provide access to Spanish and Flamenco arts through educational opportunities, cultural exchange and vibrant performances.”

The festival has garnered accolades from Houston Mayor Annise Parker, the Texas State Senate and House of Representatives and has been awarded funding from Texas Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Their performance on the SHSU campus is free and open to the public.

For more information, call the dance department at 936.294.1875 or visit the Festival Inspiración website at http://www.shsu.edu/academics/music/festival-inspiracion.



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Music Students To Give Flute Studio Recital

Music students in associate professor Kathy Daniel’s flute studio will showcase works from the Baroque (18th century) and 20th century periods on Thursday (March 7).

Performances will begin at 2 p.m. in the Gaertner Performing Arts Center Recital Hall.

The program will feature Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s “Sonata in A Minor for Flute Solo,” Bernard Rogers’s “Soliloquy No. 1” and Georg Friedrich Handel’s “Sonata in A Minor, Op. 1, No. 4.”

“I would say that there is a variety of color, instrumentation and musical styles,” Daniel said. “We also are including students from the collaborative piano studio and the cello studio this time.”

Daniel’s flute studio includes Lauren Lee, Chelsea Voltz, Mayra Hernandez and Morgan Gentry.

Admission is free.

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



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‘Inspiring’ Festival To Wrap Up With Downtown ‘Market’

SHSU’s Festival Inspiración and the Wynne Home Arts Center will bring the arts to downtown Huntsville on March 16 for the festival’s final event, the Downtown Latin Arts Market and Celebration.

The event will be from noon to 9 p.m. on the downtown square.

The Latin Arts Market and Celebration will include arts, crafts, games, performances and piñata-breaking activities from noon to 5 p.m.

During that time, participants can shop at booths set up by vendors, with activities occurring at various times throughout that period, including the piñata breakings every half hour until 4:30 p.m.

Among the performances will be the children’s musical theater, directed by artist and storyteller Rick Brown, as part of the Art Break Theatre and Arts Camp held earlier that week.

At 5 p.m. “The Great Arebeski” will take the stage, with Brown performing a magic act, followed by a street dance with Xtremo Norte from 6-9 p.m.

“This is going to be a fun, family-oriented event that gets the community together to play,” said Tamara Chasteen, Wynne Home coordinator for Festival Inspiración.

During the event, the Friends of Wynne will host a public version of the tie-dye challenge, where community members will be encouraged to help break the record for the number of tie-dyed shirts created in one day.

“In 2008 the Huntsville Arts Commission provided funding to allow Gibbs Elementary School to set a world tie-dye record,” Chasteen said. “I could find no reference online to dispute that the record of 527 T-shirts dyed in one day, set May 15, 2008.”

Anyone can participate in the challenge, and all of the Latin Arts Market and Celebration activities are free, though donations will be accepted.

For more information, contact Sergio Ruiz, festival creator and director, at 936.294.1385, the Wynne Home Arts Center at 936.291.5424, or visit the festival website at http://www.shsu.edu/academics/music/festival-inspiracion.



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Submit Update Items Here

In order to assist members of the Sam Houston State University community in publicizing events, the SHSU Communications Office (Today@Sam) is now requesting that students, faculty and staff submit information about events, accomplishments or ideas for feature stories online.

Submission criteria and guidelines, including deadlines, have now been placed online, at https://www.shsu.edu/~pin_www/guidelines.html. This information is also accessible through the “Submissions” link in the right-hand navigation on Today@Sam.

From there, those submitting ideas can access forms that will allow them to provide detailed information about their idea, as well as attach event calendars, vitas/resumes or photos, depending on the type of submission.

Ideas submitted to the SHSU Communications Office are directly utilized in several ways: as news stories, “slider” or SHSU home page stories, hometown releases, and on the Today@Sam calendar.

If your submission qualifies for distribution, we will either contact you for more detailed information, or we will edit the information using SHSU/journalistic style and forward the final release to the appropriate media.

All information is verified before release, so please provide complete, accurate and timely information. Please type all responses in appropriate upper and lower cases.

For more information, contact the Communications Office at 936.294.1836 or today@sam.edu.



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SHSU Media Contacts: Julia May, Jennifer Gauntt
March 1, 2013
Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu




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

Please send comments, corrections, news tips to Today@Sam.edu.

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