April 2004 News Releases

Friday April 30, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall again eclipses record with 2004 graduation class

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University will again eclipse a milestone with the awarding of nearly 2,800 degrees, the most in school history, during its 167th graduation Saturday, May 8 at Huntington's Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

The total number of graduates betters the previous high of 2,656, set in 2003. Also, 87 students will graduate Summa Cum Laude (3.85 GPA or higher), which also is the most in school history. The previous high was 70, in 2002.

Thirteen students will graduate with a perfect 4.0 grade point average. They are: Christopher D. Adams of Ashland, Ky.; Isabell Anderer of Sinsheim, Germany; Shawna K. Blaney of West Chester, Ohio; Jonathan R. Gilkerson of Wayne, W.Va.; Thomas D. Harris II of Poca, W.Va.; Luzy J. Jaime of Huntington; Benita R. Milam of Kenova, W.Va.; Thomas B. Payne of Owensboro, Ky.; Alisa L. Philabaun of Ironton, Ohio; Suzanne Sadat of Mount Hope, W.Va.; Laura J. Savory of Huntington; Poorani Sekar of Ames, Iowa; and, Lance P. Veeser of Wilson, Mich.

A total of 513 undergraduate students are graduating with honors.

MU Registrar Roberta Ferguson said the tentative number of graduates this spring is 2,867, or 109 higher than the previous tentative record of 2,758 set in 2003. Marshall tentatively announced a record 2,758 graduates last year, but the actual number slipped to 2,656 after spring grades were compiled.

The 2004 Commencement starts at 10 a.m. at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena. U.S. Congressman Nick Joe Rahall II will be the guest speaker. Four people also will receive honorary degrees. They are Burl Osborne of Dallas, Albin G. Wheeler of Springfield, Va., Robert E. Fox of Lexington, Ky., and Rahall, who lives in Beckley.

Marshall President Dan Angel attributes the continuing trend of a record number of graduates and honor students to the dedication of the university's faculty and the students themselves, and the school's growing presence as an education leader and research-intensive institution.

"If you look at the growth of Marshall University during the past decade, much of our success has to be attributed to our dedicated faculty and the quality of students that we are attracting," Angel said. "Marshall is committed to student success, and our continued trend of record growth in both the number of graduates and number of honors graduates is a clear validation of that mission."

Because of limited parking in the downtown area, Marshall will provide shuttle service from campus to the arena prior to and immediately following commencement. Shuttle service will be available at university lots near the Marshall's Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center, Welcome Center, Joan C. Edwards Stadium and Lot F, which is located across 3rd Avenue from Smith Hall. Shuttle service will begin at 8:45 a.m. and occur in 15-minute intervals.

The ceremony will be broadcast live on the Adelphia Cable System in the Huntington area, as well as on the university's World Wide Web site. The broadcast will begin at 10 a.m. on Marshall University's Educational Informational Channel (Channel 25). Those who wish to view the ceremony on the Web site may view it from a link from the university's home page at www.marshall.edu.

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Thursday April 29, 2004
Contact: Tom Hunter, University Communications, (304) 746-2038

Shuttle service recommended to ease traffic congestion associated with Marshall's 167th commencement

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University, in cooperation with the Tri-State Transit Authority, will again provide shuttle service for graduates and guests attending the university's 167th Commencement ceremony, which begins at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 8, at Huntington's Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

Commencement attendees are encouraged to use this service, to help alleviate traffic congestion in the downtown area associated with the event and continuing construction on the adjacent Pullman Square retail and entertainment complex.

Shuttle service will be available from university lots at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center, Welcome Center, Joan C. Edwards Stadium and the Third Avenue parking area (Lot F) near Smith Hall. Shuttle service will begin at 8:45 a.m. and occur in 15-minute intervals. Immediately following commencement, buses will transport passengers back to campus.

At the conclusion of separate ceremonies for the College of Liberal Arts and the College of Nursing and Health Professions (to be held at Big Sandy Superstore Arena immediately following the university commencement), shuttle service will return attendees of those ceremonies to campus.

Commencement Shuttle Schedule

Bus #2 - Performing Arts Center (across from the Memorial Student Center on 5th Ave.)

Bus #3 - Welcome Center (5th Ave. and 18th St.)

Bus #4 - Joan C. Edwards Stadium (20th St. Entrance)

Bus #5 - F-Lot (Across from Smith Hall - 3rd Ave. & Hal Greer Blvd.)

Shuttle buses will begin transport of graduates and guests to the Big Sandy Superstore Arena at 8:45 a.m., concluding at approximately 10:15 a.m. Following commencement, graduates and guests may board shuttles along 8th Street at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena for return to campus.

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Thursday April 29, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

WMUL students continue winning tradition at SPJ contest

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Students from WMUL-FM, Marshall University's public radio station, won several awards at the 2003 Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Contest for Region 4. The awards were presented at the Region 4 Convention Saturday, April 17 in Columbus, Ohio.

Region 4 consists of colleges and universities in West Virginia, Ohio, Michigan and western Pennsylvania, Dr. Chuck G. Bailey, associate professor of broadcasting in the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications and faculty manager of WMUL-FM, said.

Marshall students won two first-place awards, two second-place awards and one third-place award.

"Our radio students have established a tradition at WMUL-FM of being able to successfully compete at the national, regional or state level with other student-operated college radio stations," Bailey said. "WMUL-FM student broadcasters won all five of the radio awards presented in the two categories. This solid performance in SPJ's Mark of Excellence Contest is further evidence of the quality of the work performed by our talented broadcasting students."

Kent State University was the 2003 sweepstakes winner for the Mark of Excellence Contest for Region 4 by having the most points for awards in newspaper, magazine, radio and television categories. Marshall won the runner-up position for the sweepstakes award. The University of Cincinnati finished in third place in the standings.

Marshall's first-place award-winning entries in radio were:

  • Radio Documentary: "Music: A Tool for Professional Therapists," written and produced by Lenaia Mancini, a senior from Cincinnati, broadcast during "Aircheck," Monday, Nov. 24, 2003.
  • Radio Sports Reporting: "One More First: The 2003-2004 Marshall Women's Basketball Preseason Special," written and produced by Robert Harper, a graduate student from Hurricane; Jennifer Baileys, a sophomore from Mineral Wells; Travis Smith, a senior from Martinsburg, and Efren Creamer, a senior from Charles Town, broadcast before the season opening exhibition game against West Virginia Tech, Saturday, Nov. 1, 2003.

The second-place award-winning entries in radio were:

  • Radio Documentary: "Old Main: A Living Tradition," written and produced by Trent Garnes, a recent graduate from Hurricane, broadcast during "Aircheck," Monday, Oct. 20, 2003.
  • Radio Sports Reporting: "The MAC Report," written and produced by Alex Reed, a junior from Virginia Beach, Va., broadcast Friday, Sept. 12, 2003.

The third-place award-winning entry in radio was:

  • Radio Sports Reporting: "Marshall Volleyball Weekend Swing," written and produced by Vince Payne, a graduate student from Hansford, broadcast during the sports segment of the "5 p.m. Edition of Newscenter 88," Friday, Oct. 3, 2003.

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Wednesday April 28, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Fox, Osborne, Rahall, Wheeler to receive honorary degrees May 8 during Marshall's commencement

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Four individuals who not only have excelled in their professions, but given decades of strong support to Marshall University, will receive Doctor of Humane Letters honorary degrees May 8 during MU's 167th commencement ceremonies at the Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

The addition of 2004 honorees Robert E. Fox of Lexington, Ky., Burl Osborne of Dallas, U.S. Congressman Nick J. Rahall, II of Beckley, W.Va., and Albin G. Wheeler of Springfield, Va., brings to 152 the number of Marshall's honorary degree recipients.

"Marshall University is proud to honor these four extraordinary individuals with honorary degrees," MU President Dan Angel said. "They all are highly respected in their professions and all have strong ties to Marshall University. Their leadership and accomplishments, on state, national and international levels, is truly remarkable."

Commencement begins at 10 a.m. and Rahall, who represents West Virginia's Third District, will be the guest speaker.

Here is a brief look at each honorary degree recipient:

Robert E. Fox

As a pioneer in oil and natural gas exploration and production, Fox, a petroleum geologist and engineer, served with many organizations throughout the world. As a generalist with these organizations, he oversaw all aspects of ideas from their beginnings into their development as viable operations in many developing and established petroleum provinces of the world, including Libya, Pakistan, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and the United States.

In 1986, Fox received the honorary Doctor of Science degree from Heriod-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, in recognition of his work in the North Sea and his contribution to the university as a member of its Offshore Engineering Institute's Board of Governors.

Burl Osborne

One of American journalism's great figures, Osborne gained national prominence by directing the remarkable turnaround of the Dallas Morning News. He joined the paper as executive editor in 1980 following a 20-year career with The Associated Press in which he eventually became managing editor of the AP's worldwide news operation.

As circulation at the Morning News climbed at an amazing rate, Osborne rose through the ranks nearly as fast, rising to president only five years after arriving in Dallas. As one competitor from the Dallas Times Herald noted at that time, "He just beat us black and blue." Under the stewardship of Osborne, who has been described as a newspaperman through and through, the Morning News won six Pulitzer Prizes for journalistic achievement.

Nick J. Rahall, II

As a national leader in the development of federal policies relating to transportation, and infrastructure, energy and the environment, Congressman Rahall has distinguished himself as a leader for change and progress in the Appalachian Region during his nearly 30-year tenure in the United States Congress.

A tireless fighter for the people of West Virginia, he has helped secure millions of federal dollars for projects that have enhanced community and economic development in southern West Virginia and throughout the region. Through his leadership in Washington, Congressman Rahall has been instrumental in positioning Marshall University as a national transportation research leader.

Albin G. Wheeler

A much decorated soldier in the U.S. Army, Wheeler, a retired Major General, spent more than 41 years in the military before ending his remarkable career as a Quartermaster soldier in 1991. During his long and distinguished military career, General Wheeler was awarded numerous awards and decorations, including the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Bronze Star Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Medal and Army Commendation Medal with three Oak Leaf clusters.

General Wheeler did tours of duty in both the U.S. and in Southeast Asia where he took on assignments in Laos, Thailand and the Republic of Vietnam. He later served in Germany as the commander of the Army/Air Force Exchange System-Europe.

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Wednesday April 28, 2004
Contact: Tom Hunter, University Communications, (304) 746-2038

Master's and doctoral hooding ceremonies scheduled for Marshall's South Charleston, Huntington campuses

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Hooding ceremonies to honor master's and doctoral degree recipients will take place in Charleston and Huntington next week on separate days prior to Marshall University's commencement on Saturday, May 8.

The Charleston ceremony takes place at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 6, at the Charleston Civic Center Coliseum. In Huntington, the ceremony is set for 7 p.m. Friday, May 7, in the Jean Carlo Stephenson Auditorium at Huntington City Hall. Nearly 400 graduates are expected to attend the two ceremonies. Each graduate will be recognized individually when a faculty member presents a hood in a color indicative of the recipient's field of study.

In addition, the following individuals will be honored for their contributions to Marshall University:

Ashland Inc. Outstanding Graduate Advising Awards: Dr. R. Daniel Martin, Huntington campus, and Dr. Carolyn H. Suppa, South Charleston campus.

An associate professor of Exercise Science, Sport and Recreation, Martin is recognized for his commitment to the students he advises (both graduate and undergraduate) and his overall contributions to the College of Education and Human Services. Suppa, associate professor of Counseling, is known for her willingness to mentor students through the graduate education process, as well as her many contributions to the Counseling program.

Distinguished Graduate Student Alumnus Awards: Ted Obomanu, Huntington campus, and Carolanne Griffith Roberts, South Charleston campus.

A 1982 graduate of Marshall's MBA program, Obomanu honed his business skills in the areas of retail, human resources, and the pharmaceutical industry before launching a business startup in the Raleigh/Durham, N.C., area in 1995. Within six years, Mantel Solutions, a staffing business, had grown into a $4.5 million firm. Obomanu's current business interests focus on real estate and healthcare staffing.

A Charleston native, Roberts earned her M.A. in Humanities from Marshall University Graduate College (formerly West Virginia Graduate College) in 1984. After serving 11 years as Associate Travel Editor of Southern Living magazine, Roberts was appointed the Livings Editor in 1996 - a position in which she provides oversight for coverage of people and places through regular columns and 30 annual special sections. She recently was honored by the National Federation of Press Women and is a past recipient of the Southeast Tourism Society's Travel Writer of the Year award.

For more information about the hooding ceremonies, call the Graduate College at (304) 696-6606.

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Tuesday April 27, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall to offer Swahili, secondary Arabic this fall

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University Department of Modern Languages is offering two new courses in the fall 2004 semester.

Swahili 101, the most widely spoken African language south of the Sahara, is sponsored by a Fulbright grant. The program will provide 12 credits total in the language over a two-year period.

More than 50 million people in east and central Africa speak Swahili or Kiswahili, as it is called by speakers of the language. It is spoken in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The course, which is being taught by Ms. Stella Bashiru, a Fulbright scholar from Tanzania, will be offered from 10 to 10:50 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. The course is not listed in the fall schedule. To register, those interested need the following information: MDL 280, Section 102, course reference number 4770, Corbly Hall Room 241.

The course also will be taught in the Center for International Programs' Language Buffet and the Culture Capsule Program in the June Harless Center in the College of Education.

The Modern Language Department also will offer secondary Arabic. The language was first offered at Marshall this past year and was well received by students, Clark Egnor, executive director of the Center for International Programs, said. The course will be taught by Ms. Lama Hamoudi of Syria.

Arabic is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. It is estimated that 200 million people speak Arabic as their primary language in 22 countries, from Morocco to Iraq and as far south as Somalia and the Sudan. Both Arabic and Swahili have been designated by the U.S. State Department as critical languages, the study of which is of strategic importance to our national security.

"Our national deficiency in language and cultures is compromising our security interests," Egnor said. "It is vital that the students we are graduating from Marshall University are better prepared to work and live in a global environment that has become marked by serious and dangerous misunderstandings, miscommunications and conflict between cultures, particularly the Western and Muslim cultures."

Egnor said there is a great demand for people who speak these languages now in our government, particularly the federal agencies, because of the importance of the languages to national security.

"I think that by exposing our students to these critical languages, cultures through foreign language and study abroad programs, we take some small but positive steps towards peace," Egnor said.

For more information, persons interested may contact Egnor at (304) 696-2465, or Dr. Maria-Carmen Riddel, chair of the Department of Modern Languages, at (304) 696-2742.

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Monday April 26, 2004
Contact: Tom Hunter, University Communications, (304) 746-2038

TechTV To Feature Nationally Recognized MARC Wireless Initiative

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's Mobile Alternative for Residents on Campus (MARC) wireless initiative, a campus-wide expansion of cellular service that will make Marshall one of the first major universities in the nation to provide wireless telephone services to all of its student residents, will be featured for a national audience on TechTV Tuesday evening, April 27.

A production crew from TechTV's Washington, D.C. bureau visited the Huntington campus last week to tape the segment for the network's "Tech Live" program, which provides extensive coverage, in-depth analysis, and original features on breaking technology developments as they relate to market trends, entertainment, and consumer products.

The MARC initiative is scheduled to be featured on Tuesday's edition "Tech Live," which premieres at 8 p.m. The program repeats at 11 p.m. and the following weekday at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., and 6 p.m. (all times Eastern).

TechTV is currently available in nearly 40 million homes in the United States and distributes content to more than 70 countries. TechTV is available on the Adelphia Digital (channel 129) and Charter Communications (channel 40) cable systems in the Charleston-Huntington area and nationwide on DirecTV (channel 354) and Dish Network (channel 191).

In March, Marshall and its wireless partner, West Virginia Wireless, announced a campus-wide expansion of the nationally recognized MARC pilot project that provided 500 wireless phones and service to students residing in the newly constructed Gibson, Haymaker, Wellman and Willis Halls. The project eliminated the need for traditional "landline" phones in the Marshall Commons housing complex, thereby providing students with a portable, flexible telecommunications alternative.

Wireless telephone service will be expanded to Buskirk, Hodges, Holderby and Laidley Halls prior to the start of the Fall 2004 semester. This will add approximately 750 additional students to the MARC program. The MARC initiative will be completed campus-wide with expansion of wireless service to an additional 1,000 students residing in Twin Towers prior to the Fall 2005 semester.

Marshall University has received nearly 100 inquiries from higher education institutions from throughout the nation about this successful project, including inquires from national technology leader M.I.T. The success of this program is part of a number of key technology initiatives at Marshall that are providing national prominence to the university as a leader in the use of technology applications and innovations. The MARC initiative has also received national attention from media outlets ranging from Associated Press to The Chronicle of Higher Education.

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Thursday April 22, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall University Alumni Association unveils redesigned Web site

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The address of the Marshall University Alumni Association's Web site has not changed, but the contents have.

Redesigning and upgrading the site, www.marshall.edu/Alumni, has been a priority for the Alumni Association, according to Lance West, Vice President for Alumni Development. The redesigned site premieres Friday, April 23.

"With the expertise of Marshall's Information Technology (IT) department, the redesign is one that we are very proud of," West said. "Updating the site will remain a priority, and it will continue to be a wonderful tool for all visitors to use as a gateway to Marshall and the Alumni Association."

West said the technology committee on the MUAA's board of directors, along with the entire board - including the Alumni Relations staff, played a vital role in the brainstorming and creation of the association's Web-based technology.

"With tighter budgets and smaller staffs, the Internet is critical for the Alumni Association to stay connected with all who are interested in Marshall, i.e. prospective students, parents, current students, alumni, friends, faculty and staff," West said. "This site has been designed with all of these groups in mind, and we welcome input on how to keep the site fresh and exciting."

One feature of the site is @ Marshall, which is the MUAA online newsletter. It currently is being sent to 22,000 email addresses each month. It features all aspects of the university, including academics, athletics, fundraising, student recruitment and campus activities. Human interest stories also are published in the online newsletter.

"Based on the feedback we have received, the readers appear to really enjoy the human interest stories," West said.

West said anyone who wants to receive the online newsletter may request it by sending his or her email address to Marshall@Association.edu.

It is easy to stay connected with Marshall alumni and friends by registering with MU's online community through the Web site, West said. Users have access to many benefits, such as email for life, updating of records, submission of class notes, and communication with others. It is a free service and can be accessed now.

The site also features E-postcards, which are designed with Marshall campus scenes, athletic events and seasonal photos, along with other special occasions on campus. The postcards are communication tools and may be used with e-mails.

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Thursday April 22, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Donning of the Kente recognizes graduating African American students

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University Center for African American Student Programs is sponsoring the Donning of the Kente at 4 p.m. Wednesday, April 28. The ceremony, which takes place on Buskirk Field, recognizes all graduating African American students for their achievement.

All undergraduate and graduate students who will graduate this spring or graduated in fall 2003 are invited at participate. The students will be presented with a certificate and the Kente cloth will be placed over their shoulders.

Kente cloths have their roots in West Africa during the 17th Century. The cloths were traditionally given to great African leaders who attained great achievement and were only presented at times of symbolic meaning and rites of passage. The cloths are woven from a variety of colors of yarn to give each one a symbolic meaning.

Maurice Cooley, director of African American Student Programs, said the ceremony is a sign of recognition and honor for students.

"It is a great opportunity that all African American students, because of their great achievement, can be recognized like the kings and queens of Africa," Cooley said.

Cooley said about 40 of Marshall's 60 graduating African American students will participate in the donning. Students may sign up to participate up to the day of the event. College deans, faculty, alumni and the community are invited to attend.

For more information, persons may contact Cooley at (304) 696-5430.

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Wednesday April 21, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Faculty meeting Thursday to honor award winners, retirees

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University will honor seven individuals with 2003-04 Distinguished Service Awards Thursday, April 22, during the spring general faculty meeting at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center.

The meeting, which will include remarks from Marshall President Dan Angel and Faculty Senate President Larry Stickler, begins at 2 p.m. Four people also will be honored with 2003-04 Distinguished Artists and Scholars Awards.

To qualify for Distinguished Service Awards, persons must have at least 20 years of service at Marshall University, a record of distinguished service to the institution and/or college, and a record of distinguished teaching as evidenced by peer, administrative and/or student evaluations.

Each of the Distinguished Service Awards winners will receive $1,000. They include:

  • Graduate College, Dr. Joyce East, professor, Education and Professional Development, 20 years of service;
  • Graduate College, Dr. Paul Leary, professor, Education and Professional Development, 35 years of service;
  • Journalism/Mass Communications, Dr. George Arnold, professor, Journalism, 35 years of service;
  • Lewis College of Business, Dr. Chandra Akkihal, professor, Finance and Economics, 36 years of service;
  • College of Liberal Arts, Dr. Bert Gross, professor, Communication Studies, 26 years of service;
  • College of Liberal Arts, Dr. Clair Matz, professor, Political Science, 34 years of service, awarded posthumously;
  • School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Dr. Hal Shaver, Dean and professor, 31 years of service in higher education, awarded posthumously.

To be eligible for consideration for Distinguished Artists and Scholars Awards, a faculty member either must be tenured or hold a tenure-track appointment. The purpose of the award is to recognize distinction in the fields of artistic and scholarly activity on the part of the Marshall faculty.

The 2003-04 Distinguished Artists and Scholars Awards will be given to:

  • Ashish Chandra, senior recipient for Sciences and Technology, Marketing/Management, 8 years of service.
  • Scott Sarra, junior recipient for all fields, Math and Applied Science, 3 years of service.
  • Richard Begley, Engineering, 15 years of service, and Tony Szwilski, Environmental Science and Safety Technology, 19 years of experience, team/joint recipients.

As the senior faculty recipient, Chandra will receive $2,000. As the junior recipient, Sarra will receive $1,000. Begley and Szwilski will receive $1,000 apiece.

Also Thursday, Marshall will recognize 13 retiring faculty who have a combined 337 years of service. They are:

  • Dr. Dean Adkins, Biological Sciences, 31 years of service;
  • Dr. George Arnold, Journalism and Mass Communications, 35 years of service;
  • Binni Bieler, Psychiatry, 23 years of service;
  • Dr. Bruce Brown, Clinical Laboratory Sciences, 25 years of service;
  • Dr. Ronald Crosbie, Exercise Science, Sport and Recreation, 36 years of service;
  • Dr. Earl Damewood, Management and Marketing, 15 years of service;
  • Dr. William Denman, Communication Studies, 37 years of service;
  • Dr. Protip Ghosh, Geology, 22 years of service;
  • Dr. Bernard Gillespie, Information Technology and Technology Management, 7 years of service;
  • Dr. James Hooper, Information Technology and Technology Management, 13 years of service;
  • Dr. Paul Leary, Leadership Studies at Marshall University Graduate College, 35 years of service;
  • Elizabeth Nordeen, English, 37 years of service;
  • Lenora Rogers, Nursing, 21 years of service.

Other faculty to be honored Thursday are Dr. Barbara L. Nicholson, Charles E. Hedrick Outstanding Faculty Award; Dr. Charles Somerville, Marshall & Shirley Reynolds Outstanding Teacher Award; and Jamie Warner, Nicki LoCascio and Lisa Thomas, Pickens-Queen Teacher Award.

Dr. Steven Mewaldt, Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) Professor of the Year for West Virginia, also will be honored.

A reception in the performing arts center lobby will follow Thursday's meeting.

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Tuesday April 20, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Nicholson wins Hedrick Outstanding Faculty Award at Marshall

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Dr. Barbara L. Nicholson, a member of the Marshall University Graduate College faculty since 1993, has been awarded the 2003-04 Charles E. Hedrick Outstanding Faculty Award at Marshall University.

Dr. Frances Hensley, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs, said the Hedrick Award winners receives $5,000, thanks to a grant from Charles B. and Mary Jo Locke Hedrick. The award is named in honor of Charles Hedrick's father, Charles E. Hedrick, a former history professor and later Chairman of the Graduate Council, who planned the graduate program at Marshall.

Hensley also announced two other 2003-04 awards honoring four faculty members. Dr. Charles Somerville, an associate professor in the department of Biological Sciences, has been awarded the Marshall & Shirley Reynolds Outstanding Teacher Award.

Three professors have won the Pickens-Queen Teacher Award. They are Jamie Warner, an assistant professor in the department of Political Science; Nicki LoCascio, an assistant professor in the department of Biological Sciences, and Lisa Thomas, an assistant professor in the Communication Disorders department.

The five award winners will be honored at the spring general faculty meeting, which begins at 2 p.m. on Thursday, April 22, at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center.

The Hedrick Award recognizes a full-time faculty member who has a minimum of seven years' teaching experience at Marshall and has a record of outstanding classroom teaching, scholarship, research and creative activities.

The Marshall & Shirley Reynolds Outstanding Teacher Award includes a $3,000 stipend, and all full-time faculty members who have completed three or more years of service at Marshall are eligible.

Each of the Pickens-Queen Teacher Award winners receives $1,000 stipends. The awards honor outstanding junior faculty. All full-time, tenure-track faculty who are at the Instructor/Assistant Professor rank and who have completed six or less years of service at Marshall are eligible.


Hedrick Award

Nicholson teaches in the Leadership Studies program of the Graduate School of Education and Professional Development. She received her B.A. in education from Glenville State College, her M.A. in communication studies from West Virginia University, and her Ph.D. in the fields of rhetorical theory/philosophy and educational administration from Ohio University.

She has been active as a visiting faculty member internationally, beginning with a semester at the Universidade Federale do Espirito Santo in Brazil in 1995 and a Fulbright fellowship at Stockholm and Uppsala Universities in Sweden in 1996. Her Fulbright was the first for the West Virginia Graduate College before its merger with Marshall. She also has lectured at St. Petersburg and Moscow Universities in Russia and in the Czech Republic, Northern Ireland, Scotland and, most recently, at Oxford University in England.

She is well regarded by students as an outstanding teacher. Larry W. Poe, a former classmate of Nicholson's at Glenville and now one of her students in the Ed.D. program at Marshall, characterizes her as "a humane and intelligent woman who fills the role of the teacher/scholar to the highest and proudest degree."

Other students echo these comments, while adding that Nicholson is extremely generous with her time. "Deep thoughts and invigorating conversation take time," said Dr. Judith A. Porter, a former student, "but Dr. Nicholson always stops what she's doing to take time for a student."

In addition, Annette Rashid Gall, another student in the Ed.D. program, notes that Dr. Nicholson continues to support students after the semester ends. "She is not at this time my instructor," Gall says, "but she has offered books…articles…personal class notes. In short, (she) offers a level of customer service that inspires me."

Nicholson's faculty colleagues concur with the students' comments. "She is an experienced and productive scholar and researcher who is making significant contributions to her department … the institution, and the broader educational and academic community," said Dr. Ronald B. Childress, Vice President for Graduate Studies at Marshall.

Dr. Michael L. Cunningham, chair of the Leadership Studies program, said that Nicholson pays particular attention to the needs of the adult learner. "The course content is relevant to the needs of the learner, both as a student and as a professional," he noted. "Dr. Nicholson demonstrates a sense of humor, which helps provide a relaxed atmosphere for learning, which is essential to the adult learner."

In addition to her teaching, Nicholson is well known as a researcher. Recent publications include articles or chapters in Educational Foundations, Adult Learning Methods, and Planning and Changing: An Education Leadership and Policy Journal.


Reynolds Award

Somerville, who has been at Marshall since 1997, said his specialty is microbiology - "the most exciting and important field of biology," he said.

George Velasco, a graduate student in Biological Sciences, said Somerville is well-loved and respected by all faculty and students in the department.

"He is very involved in both teaching and research," Velasco said. "Of all professors that I have ever dealt with in my academic career, Dr. Somerville has been the most approachable and available to his students. His passion for science and his dedication to quality research and mentoring are worthy of recognition and he is a continual contributor to the excellence of this university."

Dr. Jeffrey D. May, Chair of the Promotion and Tenure Committee in the Department of Biological Sciences, said Somerville works tirelessly to engage students in meaningful research.

"Dr. Somerville's accomplishments in teaching are exemplary," May said. "He has strongly contributed to teaching basic and service courses, as well as developing specialized upper-level and graduate courses in microbiology. As indicated by student evaluations and letters from his colleagues, Chuck is a superior teacher."

Somerville has been nominated for and won many awards while at Marshall. He won the Marshall University Research Corporation award for Excellence in Sponsored Research in 1998, and the College of Science Merit Award and the Faculty Merit Award in 1998-99. He also won the Phi Eta Sigma Fabulous Faculty Award in 2001, and was named Researcher of the Year, MU Chapter of Sigma Xi, in 2002.


Pickens-Queen Award

Warner has been at Marshall two years. She says a major goal in each class she teaches is to create an environment where students feel free to open up and think in ways foreign to their usual modes of thought.

"I believe that a critical, self-reflective attitude is crucial to every student's ability to make a difference in the world, regardless of major or career choice," Warner said.

In observing one of Warner's classes, associate professor Judith Kullberg was impressed with Warner's ability to create a learning environment that she said transforms a collection of individuals with differing backgrounds and ability levels into a community of learners.

Kullberg also applauded Warner's use of incentives in the classroom, such as "Random Fun Activities," or "RFAs." "The RFAs have fulfilled their intended purpose, because I have seldom seen students who are as familiar and comfortable with their texts as Jamie's students were," Kullberg said.

Student Justin Lipscomb said he hopes to one day teach on the college level. "Much of how I intend to direct my courses comes out of my experience in her class," Lipscomb said of Warner. "She resembles the kind of teacher I would like to become.

LoCascio said her teaching philosophy is built upon the essences of her own educational experience, and that respect is important in the classroom. "The instructor is responsible for maintaining an environment that is respectful of individual differences and free from the fear of embarrassment or humiliation," she said. "Treatment of students must be respectful and I expect to be treated in like fashion."

LoCascio said she tries to show "honest enthusiasm" in the classroom. "At the end of the semester, it is my desire that students have accumulated biological knowledge, are capable of applying this information, have broadened their interests, focused their opinions and enjoyed the process," she said.

Jennifer Waggoner, a student in one of LoCascio's classes in spring 2003, described LoCascio as "the best asset Marshall University contains."

"Even though Dr. LoCascio's personality is THE BEST, it is coupled with a passion for the subject and adequate knowledge to teach it," Waggoner said. "Throw in her sense of humor, her creativity, her genuine concern for student education, her constant encouragement and her absolute desire to see all her students succeed and this professor cannot be beaten."

Dr. Laura J. Jenski, professor and head of Biological Sciences, said LoCascio "embodies the high energy, creative, and responsible teacher that makes a real difference in students' lives." She said LoCascio is one of the few faculty qualified and experienced in instruction from introductory courses for majors and non-majors to specialized upper-level courses.

Thomas started teaching full time at Marshall in fall 2002 in the Communication Disorders Department. She is a recognized expert in her area of expertise, voice disorders, according to Department of Communication Disorders Chair Kathryn Chezik.

Thomas spent 10 years in clinical practice in a local hospital before coming to Marshall. "She brought with her to Marshall a reputation as a superb clinician," Chezik said.

She said the switch from teaching patients in her clinical speech-language pathology practice to the challenge of teaching university students "was the greatest transition of my life."

"My philosophy of teaching is one of critical reflection and application," Thomas said. "My philosophy of teaching speech-language pathology centers on my belief that students must make the connection between the classroom and the patient each day. I believe that real life - the future - must stare us (teacher and student) in the face each day and inspire us to learn and to question and to grow."

Student Cortney Toppings had Thomas for two classes. "She teaches the class in a way that shows she really wants us to learn something," Toppings said of Thomas. "I came out of those classes with a head full of knowledge that I have actually retained. Ms. Thomas is extremely personable, caring and understanding."

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday April 20, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Plymale to speak at Marshall Community College graduation

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - State Senator Robert H. "Bob" Plymale will be the featured speaker at the Marshall Community and Technical College's graduation ceremony Friday, May 7. The 7 p.m. ceremony will take place in the Memorial Student Center's Don Morris Room.

Plymale graduated from Marshall University and currently directs the Nick J. Rahall, II Appalachian Transportation Institute (RTI) in Huntington. RTI and Marshall Community and Technical College have partnered to provide transportation-related training in the areas of rail and waterways.

Plymale was first elected in 1992 and currently is serving his third four-year term in the West Virginia Senate, where he also is chair of the Senate Education Committee. In that position, he has focused on strengthening the role of community colleges as a force in economic development.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday April 19, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Leslie Nielsen to Appear at Marshall Fundraiser April 24

Internationally recognized movie and television star Leslie Nielsen will appear at a benefit dinner for Marshall University's theatre program Saturday, April 24 beginning at 5:30 p.m. before the Marshall Theatre's production of "To Kill a Mockingbird."

"Leslie Nielsen is a great new friend for Marshall University," said Marshall president Dan Angel. "We are grateful for the time he is giving to our theatre students and program."

Tickets for the event are $75 per person and may be reserved by calling Marshall's College of Fine Arts at 696-6433. The cost includes a reception, dinner, and a short presentation by Nielsen. Complimentary tickets to the theatre performance are also available to dinner attendees.

A veteran of more than 100 motion pictures and more than 1500 television appearances, Nielsen turned his image inside out with a deadpan performance as the loopy doctor in the comic hit movie, "Airplane!" He also appeared on the TV series "Police Squad!" on which he originated the role of police Lt. Frank Drebin, which he recreated in Paramount Pictures release, "The Naked Gun," and in the sequels, "Naked Gun 2 1/2" and "Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult."

Earlier in the day on April 24th, Nielsen will work with students and answer their questions in a format similar to the Bravo cable television network's series, "From the Actors Studio," in which a television or movie personality is interviewed and answers questions from acting students. At Marshall, Nielsen will be interviewed by Brandon McCoy, a senior theatre major from Wayne County, West Virginia.

"As a student looking toward a career in show business, I appreciate the chance to work with and learn from a legendary performer," McCoy said.

Further information on the dinner event is available by calling the Marshall College of Fine Arts at (304) 696-6433.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday April 19, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

'Take Back the Night' rally planned for April 29 at Marshall

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University Women's Center and Women's Studies plan to "Take Back the Night" Thursday, April 29. The sixth-annual event, which honors survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, rape, abuse and incest, takes place from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.

"Take Back the Night" is an international rally and march organized in local communities to unify women, men and children against violence. "Take Back the Night" rallies and marches began in England to protest the fear that women encountered walking the streets at night.

This year's events begins with a "Take Back the Night" information table at the Student Activities Programming Board's swap meet at the Memorial Student Center, from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

A rally to inform students about "Take Back the Night" takes place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Buskirk Field. A table fair will run from 4:30 to 8 p.m. at the Memorial Student Center.

"Take Back the Night" continues with music starting at 5 p.m. on the Memorial Student Center Plaza. It lasts throughout the evening with speakers and "survivor time," which allows survivors of sexual assault, rape and domestic violence to share their experiences as part of the healing process.

The evening concludes with a candlelight vigil at 8 p.m. on the Memorial Student Center Plaza.

For more information, persons may contact the Marshall University Women's Center or Lorrie Burger at (304) 696-1713.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday April 19, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall students invited to Spring Fling 2004 at Harless Dining Hall

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - All Marshall University students are invited to celebrate spring and the end of the 2003-04 school year at a cookout and picnic Wednesday, April 21, at the Harless Dining Hall.

The Marshall University Alumni Association and Marshall Dining Services are among the sponsors of Spring Fling 2004, which runs from 4 to 7 p.m. Students may use their meal plan, or pay $6.25, to eat during the event.

Free popcorn and snow cones will be available, drawings for prizes will take place, and the group Texas Toney will provide music. Students must be present to claim their prizes.

Spring Fling 2004 takes place on the Harless Dining Hall lawn, weather permitting. In case of rain, the event will be moved inside the dining hall.

Other sponsors are A-Z Rental, George Smith, the Hatfield family, Marshall Bookstore, Pepsi Bottling Group, Stadium Bookstore, Marshall's Student Government Association, West Virginia Wireless and Wooten-Willis Insurance.

For more information, persons may call (304) 696-3134.

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Friday April 16, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Early Education Center's annual Art Show and Auction is April 21-24 at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Huntington residents can get a glimpse into the area's budding minds at Marshall University Early Education Center's annual Art Show and Auction, which is set for Wednesday through Saturday, April 21-24, at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center.

The second floor of the Center will feature more than 30 paintings by children enrolled in Marshall University's laboratory preschool program. Inspiration for works comes from learning experiences the Early Education Center establishes to meet the needs of all children. Many of the canvas pieces reflect projects the children have completed over the past year related to Appalachia and transportation.

"The success of the first Art Show and Auction has generated excitement among the campus community about what art truly is for young children," Clayton Burch, director of the center, said. "The families and staff of the Early Education Center place tremendous value on the arts to enhance child development. Children are always seeking an outlet for expression and the addition of canvases has been instrumental to art appreciation."

Last year the art show raised more than $1,000 for the center. The money is used to purchase materials for the hands-on projects the children conduct. These projects included the construction of a child-size house, raising Ohio River fish, the care of baby West Virginia rat snakes and an exploration of local dining.

Also, children have conducted in-depth investigations of local infrastructure and inter-modal transportation such as the relationship between bridges, rivers and highways with trucks, trains and barges.

Community-related projects can be previewed at the center's Web site at www.marshall.edu/coehs/mueec

The art show begins at 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 21. At that time, attendees may view the artwork and begin placing silent bids on individual pieces. An open house will run from 1 to 3 p.m. April 21-22 to accommodate Marshall University faculty, staff and students.

The grand finale viewing will be from 4 to 6 p.m. April 24. At that time, the highest bidders will be announced and they will receive their paintings. A trio of jazz musicians from Marshall's department of Music is tentatively scheduled to perform during the grand finale. Also, light refreshments and hors d'oeuvres will be provided.

For more information, persons may contact Zak Richards with the Early Education Center at (304) 696-6301.

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Thursday April 15, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

COLA Undergraduate Research and Creativity Conference is Tuesday, April 20 at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's fourth annual College of Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research and Creativity Conference is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Tuesday, April 20 in the Memorial Student Center and the Drinko Library.

Registration will run from 7:30 a.m. to noon at the MSC entrance. Posters will be on display on the main level of the student center from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Dozens of student presentations, including the posters, will be on display throughout the day. Students will deliver papers, exhibit posters, or present their creative works in a series of concurrent panels.

"The purpose of the conference is to showcase the academic and creative talents of our students," said Dr. David L. Kenley, a faculty member in the history department and conference co-director. "We hope the conference will be an intellectually stimulating experience that brings together the university community, parents, friends, alumni, and employers."

This year more than 100 students will participate in the conference as presenters and panel chairs.

"Each of the presenters is working with a faculty mentor to ensure the quality of their research and work," Kenley said.

The keynote speaker is Dr. Les Standiford, Director of the Creative Writing Program at Florida International University. His presentation, "The Man Who Invented Florida: Revisiting the Concept of Robber Baron," will be delivered at 11 a.m. in the Shawkey Lounge of Memorial Student Center.

"Last year's Liberal Arts Undergraduate Research and Creativity Conference demonstrated in a clear and convincing way that undergraduates at Marshall University are heavily involved in exciting and valuable research," said Dr. Sarah Denman, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs. "The students involved in this year's conference, and their faculty mentors, are to be congratulated for carrying on what I hope will be a long and satisfying tradition."

Dr. Christina Murphy, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts, said, "The range of ideas, topics and disciplines represented in this conference is broad and also is indicative of the scope of the Liberal Arts at Marshall University."

And, Denman added, "It is clear that the work done by students reflects the influence of faculty members who are firmly committed to undergraduate research. This conference is thus a demonstration of the links between teaching and research."

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday April 14, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Congressman Rahall to speak at Marshall commencement

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - United States Congressman Nick Joe Rahall, II will be the keynote speaker for Marshall University's spring commencement. The university's 167th graduation exercise is set for 10 a.m. Saturday, May 8 at Huntington's Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

Well known for his expertise in national policies relating to transportation, infrastructure, energy and the environment, Rahall has been a tireless fighter for the people of southern West Virginia. First elected in 1976, he currently is serving his 14th term and is the dean of the West Virginia Delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives.

"Through his leadership in Washington, Congressman Rahall has been instrumental in positioning Marshall University as a national transportation research leader," MU President Dan Angel said. "His contributions to the betterment of Marshall University have helped to broaden the focus and scope of our academic and research efforts. We look forward to welcoming him home to the Marshall University community for this commencement address."

In the area of transportation and infrastructure, Rahall is a national leader in the development of federal highway and transit legislation. A veteran of every federal highway bill since coming to Congress, Rahall was a key architect in the formulation of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (known as TEA 21).

In that bill, he secured more dollars for designated highway projects than any other member of Congress and established the Rahall Transportation Institute (RTI), a consortium of five Southern West Virginia colleges, based at Marshall.

Recently, Rahall helped RTI win designation as a National Maritime Enhancement Institute to enable the school to compete for federal grants related to a great number of maritime activities. This is one of only seven so-named universities in the nation, further advancing RTI's mission of "Building Jobs through Transportation" for West Virginia.

Two weeks ago, Congressman Rahall accompanied U.S. Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta to Marshall's Huntington campus for a first-hand look at the research work being conducted at RTI.

Numerous state and national organizations have recognized Congressman Rahall for his long record of outstanding and distinguished public service. A diverse group of organizations such as the Citizen's Coal Council, American Federation of Government Employees of West Virginia, Friends of the Earth, Sierra Club, American Road & Transportation Builders Association and the National Association of Home Care have recognized Rahall for his congressional efforts.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday April 14, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Kerkian named Executive Director of Marshall Foundation

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University Foundation, Inc. President Jay White and Marshall President Dan Angel today announced two significant moves regarding the future of the MU Foundation.

First, Glen R. Kerkian, a veteran development leader at Ohio University the past 18 years, has been named Executive Director of the Marshall University Foundation, Inc., effective June 1.

Second, by virtue of a new relationship between the Foundation and the university, Kerkian also will serve as Marshall's Senior Vice President for Development. The Foundation not only will manage financial gifts to the university, but also will be responsible for helping to secure new funds. The Foundation thus assumes responsibility for Marshall's Campaign for National Prominence.

Kerkian has been Assistant Vice President for Development and Campaign Manager at Ohio since 1998.

"We are gaining an experienced and successful person of high caliber," Angel said. "I'm extremely pleased. Glen will be a major, positive addition to the Foundation, the university and the community."

The Foundation is a nonprofit, tax-exempt educational corporation that, before this new relationship, received, managed and administered gifts on behalf of Marshall University. Part of Kerkian's role will be to head up the university's Campaign for National Prominence, which has a goal of raising $100 million by December 2005. Thus far, more than $78 million has been raised since the Campaign began in 2001.

Under Kerkian's leadership, the Foundation will adopt guidelines governing fundraising activities that conform with several objectives, including:

  • Managing and directing the day-to-day operation of the Development staff, and establishing annual productivity targets for fundraising as a basis for annual evaluations for university and Foundation staff;
  • Integrating the university's fundraising expectations into weekly planning for the academic colleges, athletics and other related units;
  • Coordinating with the university's communication and marketing efforts;
  • Oversight of the university's alumni relations operation, via Vice President Lance West.

As Campaign Manager in Ohio's Office of Development, Kerkian has played an integral role in the university's Bicentennial Campaign, the largest fund-raising effort in the institution's history. Targeted for completion later this year, the $200 million campaign will provide money for scholarships, endowed professorships, technological enhancements, innovative programs and capital improvements at Ohio.

"Glen Kerkian's credentials are just what our search committee sought," said Vince Manzi, former president of the Marshall Foundation and chair of the search committee. "He has an excellent background in higher education and thoroughly comprehends the direction that a university like Marshall is destined to go."

Throughout the course of the Campaign, Kerkian's duties as Assistant Vice President for Development and Campaign Manager at Ohio included:

  • Campaign planning for 33 development colleagues including production targets for four Directors of Development;
  • Recruitment and training of a 35-person volunteer campaign cabinet;
  • Formulating of strategies and measurement for attainment of $20-$40 million annually in charitable gifts;
  • Coordinating and staffing all leadership gift level visits for the President of the university and the Vice President for University Advancement.

"With our proximity to Huntington, I have observed and admired the intensity that the Marshall community has for its University," Kerkian said. "I can't wait to become a champion for all the positive things that are happening here. This move just feels right for me.

"I have been charmed by the good will of President Angel, the selfless dedication of both the Board of Governors Chair Mike Perry and Foundation Board Chair Jay White, as well as Vince Manzi and other members of the search committee. Starting with this team is a great formula to build on the successes already achieved at Marshall.

"Educating adults is something we do better than anyone in the world. I am convinced that securing resources for higher education is of the utmost priority in this region and nationally. This is where I get my motivation and what keeps this work so fresh for me."

At Ohio, Kerkian also has been an adjunct instructor in the College of Health and Human Services since 1994. He previously has served as Director of Development for Major Gifts and College Programs, Assistant Dean for Development, College of Communication, and Assistant Director, Office of Alumni Relations.

"I'm very excited about the prospects of a united vision this individual's going to bring to the job," White said. "We like his enthusiasm and his passion for the job, and the fact that he's been with his previous institution for 18 years exhibits dedication to an institution and to a cause."

Kerkian and his wife, Susan, live in Athens, Ohio, where she teaches kindergarten at West Elementary. They are the parents of one grown daughter, Annie.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday April 14, 2004
Contact: Josh Ferguson, Co-Director LGBT Outreach, (304) 696-6623

International recording artist and lecturer Skott Freedman to speak and perform at Marshall University Friday, April 16

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - International recording artist and lecturer Skott Freedman will perform and present a lecture entitled "Battling Bi-Phobia and Bringing Bisexuals Back to Both Communities" on Friday, April 16, 2004 at Marshall University.

The lecture and performance will take place at 8 p.m. in the Alumni Lounge of the Memorial Student Center. The event is sponsored by the Marshall University Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) Outreach Office and Marshall's Office of Multicultural Affairs, and is free to the public.

"We feel that Skott Freedman will be both informative and entertaining," said Josh Ferguson, co-director of the LGBT Outreach Office. "He combines his singing and performance on the piano with an interesting and important message concerning inclusion of bisexuals in both the heterosexual and homosexual communities. They often face ridicule and being outcasts from both communities and it's time to start learning more about acceptance."

The event is designed to both entertain and educate the community surrounding issues of bisexuality. For more information about Freedman and his performance, persons may call the Marshall LGBT Outreach office at (304) 696-6623 or visit Freedman's Web site at http://www.skottfreedman.com

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday April 13, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Ten elected to serve on MUAA Board of Directors

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Ten people were elected to the Marshall University Alumni Association Board of Directors in the organization's recent election.

The new members, listed in alphabetical order, are: Suzanne Lynch Dickens, Roger S. Dyer, Olive Blankenship Hager, C. Jay O'Dell, Deborah England Prestera, Natalie Ray, Sam Stanley, Jack C. Trainor, Janis Winkfield and Robert E. Yost.

The Board of Directors now has 50 members, including 30 elected directors, four who were appointed by the MUAA and 16 university constituency representatives. Each of the newly elected members will serve a three-year term, beginning July 1, 2004.

"We're delighted to have had such a wonderful response from our active Marshall University alumni regarding this year's election," said MUAA President Tom Harris. "We look forward to having these people be part of our leadership team."

In addition to Harris as president, other officers for the 2004-05 year are: Nancy Campbell, first vice president; Dr. James Harless, second vice president; Mike Graybeal, treasurer; and Sharon Porter, secretary.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday April 9, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall Chemistry student to participate in Posters on the Hill

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - T. David Harris II, a Marshall University senior from Poca, W.Va., will be in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, April 20 to participate in the annual "Undergraduate Research Posters on the Hill" event.

Posters on the Hill, sponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research, will be presented in the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill. Harris is the first Marshall student chosen to take part in the event.

Harris, a Chemistry major, is one of 60 undergraduate students from throughout the country selected to present posters regarding research. His is titled, "Synthesis of Molecular Magnets." He already has presented the poster several times, most recently last week at the American Chemical Society National Meeting in Anaheim, Calif.

"The reaction seems to be positive. This work definitely has a lot of potential in the computer industry," Harris said. "It could make electronic storage devices more efficient."

Harris learned of the Posters on the Hill event from his Chemistry advisory, Dr. Michael Castellani. He then submitted an abstract of his work, filled out an application and was chosen to participate.

Harris and the other students will take part in an orientation session from 8 to 10 a.m., then have free time to visit with their Congressional Representatives and Senators. Posters will be displayed from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

For more information or to reach Harris, persons may call Castellani at (304) 696-6486.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday April 8, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Regional historian to speak at Woodson fundraising banquet

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Henry Robert Burke, a regional historian from Marietta, Ohio, will be the keynote speaker at the Carter G. Woodson Memorial Foundation, Inc. fundraising banquet Saturday, April 17.

The 12th annual banquet will take place at 6 p.m. at Four Seasons, located at 905 3rd Ave. in Huntington. Burke has titled his speech, "You have gifts that can change others' lives. How do you choose to use them?"

Burke grew up in Washington County, Ohio, where Marietta is the oldest organized settlement in the Northwest Territory under the United States government. His writings and lectures focus on African-American history and Native American history.

Proceeds from the banquet will help fund a scholarship endowment to support outstanding Marshall University students, as well as the purchase of materials on black culture and history.

The foundation is named in honor of Carter G. Woodson, who was a graduate of Douglass High School in Huntington and went on to earn a Ph.D. from Harvard. Woodson, who is widely known as the "father of African-American history," founded the Association for the study of Negro Life and History in 1915. He also started the influential "Journal of Negro History" in 1916.

A reception will precede the banquet. Music for the evening will be provided by Charles Johnson.

Tickets for the banquet are available for a donation of $25. Corporate tables also are available. To purchase tickets or for more information, contact Newatha Myers, foundation president, at (304) 894-5772, or Loretta Hagler, banquet chairwoman, at (304) 736-1655.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday April 7, 2004
Contact: Jan Parker, Graduate Dean's Office, (304) 696-2816

Deadline Nears for Summer Graduate Tuition Waivers

Applications for a limited number of graduate tuition waivers for Marshall University's summer terms will be accepted through Friday, April 9, 2004, in the Graduate Dean's Office, 113 Old Main, on the Huntington campus and by the students' academic area offices on the South Charleston campus.

Priority consideration will be given to faculty and staff of the state's public and private colleges and universities and to West Virginia residents. A small number of waivers will be awarded to nonresident students.

Academic merit, which will be determined using grade point average and scores on required graduate admissions examinations, will be the major consideration in awarding the waivers that cover tuition. Students who receive waivers are responsible for paying student center and activity fees and some department specific fees.

Up to three hours of waiver for graduate course work will be awarded to qualified applicants.

Students interested in being considered for a tuition waiver based on financial need criteria should contact the Graduate Dean's Office in Huntington or the Graduate Admissions Office in South Charleston.

Students who previously held waivers must reapply to be considered for summer term waivers.

Applicants who are awarded waivers will be notified by email. Huntington campus students may pick up approved waivers in 113 Old Main beginning Friday, April 23, 2004, and take them to the Bursar. Waivers not claimed by Monday, May 3, 2004, will be assigned to others qualified applicants.

South Charleston campus students must be registered for summer classes by Monday, May 3, 2004, to receive the waivers and to have the payments posted to their accounts. Waivers for students who are not registered by May 3 will be assigned to other qualified applicants.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday April 7, 2004
Contact: Lynne Mayer, , (304) 696-6214

Ashes to Glory Scholarship established at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University Foundation Inc. has established the Ashes to Glory Scholarship, financed through a percentage of the proceeds from the sale of the DVD "Ashes to Glory" donated by Witek and Novak Inc., and by a gift from AEP-West Virginia and its employees.

The scholarship recipient will be a graduating high school senior who is a participant in the Upward Bound Program. He or she must have a minimum 3.0 high school GPA and a minimum ACT score of 20, and have exhibited leadership and community service involvement.

The student will be selected by the director of the Upward Bound Program at Marshall University, in cooperation with the Office of Student Financial Assistance. The award will be applied to educational expenses and may be renewed for up to a total of four years pending satisfactory academic achievement.

"Ashes to Glory," a two-hour documentary produced by the Huntington-based Witek and Novak Inc. and West Virginia Public Broadcasting, was released in November 2000 to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the Marshall University football team's plane crash.

The documentary, which won several national awards and a regional Emmy Award, traces Marshall's football team and its fans through the tragedy of the plane crash, the difficulty of rebuilding and onto its present-day rise to national prominence in college football.

The documentary is now available on VHS and DVD. For more information, check out the "Ashes to Glory" Web site at www.wvpubcast.org/ashestoglory. More information about the Ashes to Glory Scholarship and the Marshall University Scholarship Program may be obtained by calling (304) 696-6214.

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday April 6, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

First HealthyHuntington.org Marathon set for Nov. 14 in Huntington; race to begin, end at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The first HealthyHuntington.org Marathon will be staged in Huntington on Sunday, Nov. 14 of this year, race director Dr. Tom Dannals said today.

The 26-mile, 385-yard race will start on 3rd Avenue near the overpass that connects Marshall University's parking garage and Cam Henderson Center, and it will end on James F. Edwards Field at Marshall's Joan C. Edwards Stadium. The race begins at 8 a.m.

Dannals, a family practice physician, said additional events include a half-marathon (13.1 miles) walk and relays of two or three people. The event is sponsored by Huntington YMCA and Huntington Internal Medicine Group (HIMG).

"The emphasis on the whole event is good health," said Dannals, who also is president of HealthyHuntington.org. "What matters is you and me, the average person. This is all about good health, whether you're running the marathon, doing the relay or walking. HealthyHuntington.org is dedicated to bringing the concept of good health to Huntington. I don't want 'HealthyHuntington' to be an oxymoron."

Numerous other activities, such as a health and fitness expo at Cam Henderson Center, are planned in conjunction with the marathon. More details will be announced throughout the year.

Entry fees are as follows:

Marathon: $30 if entry forms are postmarked by Oct. 1, $35 if postmarked by Nov. 1, and $40 after Nov. 1;
Marathon relay: $20 per runner if entry forms are postmarked by Nov. 1, $25 per runner after Nov. 1;
Half-marathon walk: $20.

Entry forms are available at www.HealthyHuntington.org, and www.active.com. The first 200 marathon runners to sign up will receive a fleece pullover, and all other runners and all walkers will receive a long-sleeve T-shirt. Marathon finishers also will receive a medal and a finish certificate. Marathoners must be 16 years of age on race day, or 10 years of age or older on race day to run the relay.

Dannals said he is hoping at least 300 marathoners, 200 relay runners and 500 walkers to participate.

"It should be a real quality event," Dannals said. "We already have all 16 of the water stops planned, and all are manned. We're going to take the runners to the best sites of the city - Central City, down by the Ohio River, Ritter Park - and then finish at the stadium. People already are starting to put it on their calendars."

Dannals said the race will be certified by USA Track and Field to be 26 miles, 385 yards so that it can be used as a qualifier for the Boston Marathon.

More information is available by clicking on www.HealthyHuntington.org, or by emailing Dannals at president@healthyhuntington.org.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday April 5, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Award-winning poet to read from his work at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Poet James Harms will read from his work at 8 p.m. Thursday, April 15, in Memorial Student Center room 2W16 at Marshall University.

Harms is the author of four collections of poems, most recently Freeways and Aqueducts from Carnegie-Mellon University Press. He also is the author of Quarters and The Joy Addict. His work has appeared in such journals as Poetry, Denver Quarterly, Kenyon Review, The Antioch Review, The American Poetry Review, and many others.

Harms has been awarded the PEN/Revson Foundation Fellowship, as well as grants from the West Virginia and Pennsylvania Art Commissions. At West Virginia University he has been named a Benedum Distinguished Scholar, The Eberly College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Teacher, The Eberly College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Researcher, and The Carnegie Foundation/CASE United States Teacher of the Year for West Virginia. He directs the creative writing program in the Department of English at West Virginia University.

Harms' appearance, which is free to the public, is sponsored by the Marshall English department and the College of Liberal Arts. For more information, contact Art Stringer in the Marshall English department at (304) 696-2403.

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Monday April 5, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Tri-State Psychology Conference Thursday at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The 13th annual Tri-State Psychology Conference takes place on Marshall University's Huntington campus Thursday, April 8. All events will be in the Don Morris Room of the Memorial Student Center.

Students in the Marshall chapter of Psi Chi - the national honor society in psychology - and the Psychology Club are organizing the conference.

In addition to the two student groups, support for the conference is coming from faculty and staff of the department of psychology, the North American Association of Masters in Psychology (NAMP), and the College of Liberal Arts, according to Dr. Pamela Mulder, associate professor of psychology.

Approximately 25 posters, addressing such topics as developmental psychology and clinical psychology, will be on display. The public is invited to view the posters and attend the presentations.

"Twenty-five people attended the first Tri-State Conference 13 years ago and now we typically host more than 300 guests representing seven or eight colleges and universities in four states," Mulder said. "We have received recognition as a regional research conference which provides students with their first opportunity to participate fully in a professional setting."

The schedule of events includes:

9 a.m. - Welcoming remarks from Dr. Sarah Denman, Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs.

9 a.m. to noon - Poster sessions with approximately 40 students participating.

1 to 2:30 p.m. - Keynote speaker Jim Livingood, a psychologist with the U.S. Navy, will speak on issues of importance to master's level psychologists, and he also will discuss careers in the military and in homeland security for psychologists.

3 to 5 p.m. - Six oral presentations will be given.

In addition to Marshall participants, faculty and staff members are expected to attend from West Virginia University, the University of Charleston, Mountain State University, Concord College, Frostburg State University (Maryland), Morehead State University (Kentucky), Somerset Community College and the University of Rio Grande (Ohio).

Admission to the conference is free. To register, e-mail Mulder at mulder@marshall.edu.

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Friday April 2, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post columnist, William Raspberry, speaks at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Washington Post columnist William Raspberry, who won the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Commentary in 1994, will speak at Marshall University on Wednesday, April 7.

Burnis R. Morris, the current Carter G. Woodson Professor at Marshall, is a friend of Raspberry's and arranged the visit. Raspberry's 8 p.m. speech, which is free to the public, will take place in the Francis-Booth Experimental Theater at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center.

While at Marshall, Raspberry will interact and work with students in the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications, according to Corley Dennison, the School's interim dean. Dennison said Raspberry's points of view regarding diversity and good journalism will be of interest to the students and the community.

"We think it will be good for the students; they'll learn from his experience," Dennison said.

Raspberry has been a Post columnist since 1966. His intellect and warmly personal writing style have attracted a legion of admiring readers to his commentary on social and political issues. "Reading Raspberry's column is like having a conversation with an intelligent friend," one newspaper editor says.

Raspberry grew up in the small Mississippi town of Okolona, which he likens to the one in "To Kill a Mockingbird." "We had two of everything there," he remembers, "one for whites and one for blacks." He followed a pre-ministerial curriculum at Indiana Central College and graduated with a B.S. in history in 1960.

His newspaper career began with a summer job at the Indianapolis Recorder in 1956. His duties there as reporter, photographer and editor inspired him to join The Washington Post in 1962, after serving two years in the Army. At The Post, he was hired as a teletype operator, and quickly advanced to general assignment reporter, copy editor and assistant city editor.

His coverage of the 1965 Watts riot in Los Angeles earned him the Capital Press Club's "Journalist of the Year" award, and in 1967 he received a Citation of Merit in Journalism from Lincoln University in Jefferson City, Mo., for distinction in improving human relations.

The National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) gave Raspberry its 1994 Lifetime Achievement Award. "Raspberry's clarity of thought and his insistence on speaking the truth as he sees it - even when others disagree - have kept his column fresh, unpredictable and uncommonly wise," cited NABJ. "His work has won him ... the respect of readers all over America."

Raspberry's column first ran in 1966 in the local section of The Post. In 1971, his column was moved to the paper's op-ed page. Raspberry continued to comment on issues of education, crime, justice, drug abuse and housing, but added a national dimension. Syndication by The Washington Post Writers Group began in 1977.

Raspberry's commentary now appears in more than 100 newspapers. It often addresses the latest ideas and proposals for answers to social dilemmas: "I don't enjoy celebrating problems. I talk about problems with a view to inching toward solutions," he says.

In 1997, Raspberry was named one of the top 50 most influential journalists in the national press corps by the Washingtonian magazine. Raspberry is among "but a handful of journalists (with) the power to introduce new ideas and give them currency," the magazine said. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Professional Journalists.

Georgetown University, in honoring him with a doctoral degree in 1984, said Raspberry "has shown us what we are, but has also shown us what we might be." He has been awarded honorary doctorates by 25 educational institutions.

Raspberry teaches at Duke University, serving in the Knight Chair in Communications and Journalism. He and his wife, Sondra, a teacher at Trinity College, reside in Washington, D.C. They have three children.

Dennison said Raspberry's appearance at Marshall is sponsored by the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications, the Office of Multicultural Affairs and Provost Sarah Denman.

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Friday April 2, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

New Marshall Student Government Association leaders to be inaugurated April 6 at MU President's home

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Newly-elected Marshall University Student Government Association President Jennifer Marie Gaston and Vice President Joshua Dain Cassidy will be inaugurated in a ceremony Tuesday, April 6 at the home of President and Mrs. Dan Angel.

The Angels' home is located at 1040 13th Ave. in Huntington, and the event begins at 6 p.m.

Gaston and Cassidy received 955 of 1,884 votes cast during the March 9-10 SGA election, easily outdistancing two other teams of challengers.

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Thursday April 1, 2004
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Two MU parking lots, portion of 6th Avenue to be closed Friday during Bush visit

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University will close two parking lots Friday in conjunction with President Bush's visit to campus.

James E. Terry, Director of Public Safety at Marshall, said the employee and student lots located east and west of the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center will be closed Friday. Also, 6th Avenue between Hal Greer Boulevard and 17th Street will be closed, beginning at 9 a.m.

President Bush is scheduled to take part in a conversation on job training shortly before noon Friday at the performing arts center.

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