December 2008 News Releases

Monday December 22, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall University history professor authors The History of El Salvador

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Dr. Christopher M. White, an assistant professor of Latin American history at Marshall University, has written a book titled The History of El Salvador, which was published as part of the Greenwood Histories of the Modern Nations series.

More than 40 volumes of this series, which was launched in 1998, have been published. The series is intended to provide students and interested lay people with up-to-date, concise and analytical histories of many of the nations of the contemporary world.

For each nation, an author who was recognized as a specialist in the history of that nation was selected to write the book, according to series editors Frank W. Thackeray and John E. Findling.

At Marshall, White teaches courses on Latin America, the developing world, and U.S. foreign relations. He also is the author of Creating a Third World: Mexico, Cuba, and the United States during the Castro Era, published in 2007.

"I jumped at the chance to write the book because I have had a special place in my heart for the Salvadoran people ever since I made friends with Salvadoran refugees 17 years ago," White said. "This is primarily a book for American students because, among other reasons, the U.S. government supplied more military aid to the Salvadoran military than to any other Latin American military until then (1980s), and the result was at least 70,000 murdered civilians."

"The importance of history is that it allows us to shine a bright light on our recent and distant past in the hope of better understanding the consequences of historical events," said Dr. David Pittenger, dean of Marshall's College of Liberal Arts. "Dr. White's book provides a timely account of El Salvador's history and the United States' involvement in that country's evolution. Although the history is stark, it provides us the opportunity to reflect upon our nation's role in international affairs and the autonomy of sovereign states."

Direct Link to This Release

Monday December 22, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Winners announced in holiday card, commemorative plate design contests

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's annual design contests sponsored by MU President and Mrs. Stephen J. Kopp have been won by a Marshall alumna and a current student in the University's College of Fine Arts.

Courtney Kania of Oak Hill, W.Va., a 2008 Marshall University graduate, is the winner of the 2008 Holiday Card Design Contest. Kania designed the winning card while she was a senior in the Department of Art and Design's Graphic Design program.

Allyson Eyermann of Ashland, Ky., a Marshall senior in the Department of Art and Design's Ceramics program, won the 2008 Commemorative Plate Design Contest.

The winners received $700 each for their designs.

President and Mrs. Kopp began the card design and plate design competition in 2007 as a way of recognizing the talent of Marshall's students. The card designed by Kania is being mailed to everyone on President Kopp's mailing list.  

Kania's card design features Marco in a green sleigh, complete with the Marshall logo, being pulled in the snow by four bison.

Eyermann's plate design is divided into four sections and features line drawings of four new facilities on Marshall's Huntington campus - the student recreation center, which will open in February; the First Year Freshman Residence Halls, the Dot Hicks Softball Complex and the Arthur Weisberg Family Engineering Laboratories.

In the card design contest, 2008 graduate Casey Pauley was the second-place winner and received $400, and Melissa Moran, a senior, was third and received $150.

In the commemorative plate design contest, William Andrew Burgess was the second-place winner and received $400, and third place went to Erin Brown, who won $150. Both Burgess and Brown are sophomores.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday December 19, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Executive director of WV Autism Training Center at Marshall discusses work of center on international talk radio show

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Dr. Barbara Becker-Cottrill, executive director of the West Virginia Autism Training Center at Marshall University, was a guest recently on a popular international talk radio show that will air this weekend on the Internet.

Becker-Cottrill was interviewed on the show titled "Adults on the Autism Spectrum: TODAY!" The show will air at 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 20 at

"This was a wonderful opportunity to discuss the work of the West Virginia Autism Training Center with both a national and international audience," Becker-Cottrill said. "Our family-focused, positive behavior support model is such an effective way to work with families, educators and friends of individuals on the autism spectrum. I was also happy to be able to share information about the Marshall University College Program for Students with Asperger's Syndrome."

The show airs on the third Saturday of each month. The general themes addressed include: planning for the future; how to access adult services; effective transition approaches; wills/trusts/guardianship; self-advocacy; state and national advocacy; service development; employment opportunities; supported living; recreation/leisure activities; and personal stories of success and struggle.

Its host, Dr. David L. Holmes, is board certified in Forensic Science, Behavioral Science and Psychology. He is a certified/licensed chief school administrator/supervisor/principal and teacher.  He is immediate past president and founder of The Eden Family of Services and the longest standing chairman of the Panel of Professional Advisors of the Autism Society of America.

Becker-Cottrill received her doctorate in education from Teachers College, Columbia University. She has been involved in education and developmental disabilities for the past 28 years, serving as a behavior analyst at the Margaret Chapman School in Hawthorne, N.Y., and as the executive director of the statewide West Virginia Autism Training Center at Marshall for the past 18 years. She also is an adjunct graduate professor at Marshall University, teaching courses related to autism, and co-author of the book "Autism: A Primer for Educators."

Becker-Cottrill has served as the principal investigator for the West Virginia Autism Monitoring Project, funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. She is a co-director of the Network of Autism Training and Technical Assistance Programs (NATTAP) and co-founder of the College Program for Students with Asperger's Syndrome at Marshall University. She serves on the Autism Society of West Virginia Board of Directors and the Autism Society of America Board of Directors. She recently was appointed as co-chair of the Panel of Professional Advisors for the Autism Society of America.

For more information, contact Becker-Cottrill at 304-696-2844.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday December 18, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Services available at Marshall University during holiday break

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Although Marshall University officially will be closed for holiday break from Tuesday, Dec. 23 through Thursday, Jan. 1, selected departments, offices and facilities at the Huntington campus will be open at various times during the break.

Services will be available not only to assist Marshall's returning students, but those considering attending MU in the future.

Departments and facilities scheduled to be open and offering assistance from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 23 and Monday-Tuesday, Dec. 29-30, include Academic Affairs, Academic Advising, Admissions, the Bursar's Office, Financial Aid, the Registrar's Office and the Joseph M. Gillette Welcome Center.

The Marshall Bookstore will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 23, Monday, Dec. 29 and Tuesday, Dec. 30, and from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 31. Marshall's mailroom will be open from 1 to 4 p.m. Dec. 23, and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Dec. 29, 30 and 31.

Also, the Marshall University Foundation, Inc.'s office in Old Main 323 will be open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 30-31 to answer calls, accept gifts and other requests. The days of Dec. 23, 25, 26 and 29, the Foundation's main phone lines will be answered by Foundation and Development staff from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 

Here is a list of some services that will be available during the break:

  • Academic Affairs (Old Main 110, 304-696-6704): All services available
  • Academic Advising: in the Registrar's Office (Old Main 106B, 304-696-6410)

  • Admissions (Old Main 102, 304-696-3160): Phone and walk-in inquiries; credentials and applications

  • Bursar's Office (Old Main 101, 304-696-6620): Payment of tuition and fees; parking permits; loan counseling; payment plans, telephone correspondence and general student counseling

  • Financial Aid (Old Main 116, 304-696-3162 or 800-438-5390): All services available

  • Registrar's Office (Old Main 106B, 304-696-6410): All services available

  • Welcome Center (1601 5th Ave., 304-696-6833): Answering phones, meeting with prospective students and scheduling campus tours

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday December 16, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

WMUL students win three silvers in Davey Awards Competition

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Students from WMUL-FM, Marshall University's public radio station, received three Silver Awards this fall in the Fourth Annual International Davey Awards Competition for 2008.  The winners were named in a letter to WMUL-FM from the International Academy of the Visual Arts (IAVA) in New York, N.Y.

The International Davey Awards are creative awards focused exclusively on honoring outstanding creative work from the best small firms worldwide. There were more than 4,000 entries in the International Davey Awards Competition for 2008 from ad agencies, radio stations, production firms, in-house creative professionals, graphic designers, design firms and public relations firms. 

Entries are judged by the International Academy of the Visual Arts and are underwritten by Advertising Age Small Business Network.  The International Davey Awards offer gold and silver awards.

"This is an accomplishment for WMUL-FM to be recognized for writing and producing a noteworthy newscast, an enlightening news feature package and an impressive play-by-play call of Marshall basketball," said Dr. Chuck G. Bailey, professor of radio-television production and management in the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications at Marshall University and faculty manager of WMUL-FM.

"I am proud for the honor these International Davey Awards bestow on WMUL-FM, the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications and Marshall University.  These silver awards indicate the respect the IAVA judges have for the writing, reporting and production skills of our motivated student radio staff that was exhibited during this worldwide competition against professional practitioners in similar sized organizations."

The Silver Award-winning entries by WMUL-FM were in the categories Radio Newscast, Radio Feature Package and Radio Sports Play-by-Play.

Radio Newscast

The "5:00 p.m. Edition of Newscenter 88," with producer Griffin McElroy, a senior from Huntington; news anchors Matthew Gajtka, a recent graduate from Weirton; Kimberly Burcham, a recent graduate from Huntington; and sports anchor Robert Iddings, a junior from St. Albans; broadcast Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2007.

Radio Feature Package

"The Pumpkin House: Trick or Treat Night," written and produced by Adam Cavalier, a senior from Montgomery, a feature package that was broadcast during the "5:00 p.m. Edition of Newscenter 88," Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2007.

Radio Sports Play-by-Play

WMUL-FM's broadcast of the Marshall University versus University of Memphis men's basketball game at Cam Henderson Center in Huntington Saturday, Jan. 12, 2008. The students calling the game broadcast over FM 88.1 were basketball play-by-play announcer Adam Cavalier, color commentator Brian Dalek, a senior from McMechen, and engineer Justin Prince, a freshman from Kenova.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday December 15, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Buses available for Marshall students wanting to attend Chesapeake Energy Capital Classic

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's Student Government Association and Alumni Association are sponsoring two buses for MU students wanting to attend the annual Chesapeake Energy Capital Classic basketball games in Charleston.

The Capital Classic, featuring men's and women's games between Marshall University and West Virginia University, will be played Wednesday, Jan. 14 at the Charleston Civic Center Coliseum. The women's game begins at 5:30 p.m., and the men play at 8 p.m.

The first of the two buses leaves Marshall from the Memorial Student Center on the Huntington campus at 4:30 p.m. and should arrive at the Civic Center in time for the start of the women's game. The second bus leaves at 5:30 p.m. and should arrive at the Civic Center in time for fans to attend a pre-game reception in the South Hall or watch the second half of the women's game.

Each bus has 49 seats. Students wanting to reserve a seat on either bus may do so by e-mailing SGA President Matt James at The first 49 people to respond for each time slot will have the opportunity to ride. Students e-mailing James need to specify which bus they want to ride - the one that leaves at 4:30 p.m. or the one that leaves at 5:30 p.m.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday December 10, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall University students from WMUL, 'Up Late' win awards

- Students from Marshall University's W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications won several awards this fall in the 87th Annual National College Media Convention/2008 Collegiate Broadcasters Inc. (CBI) National Student Radio Production Awards Ceremony in Kansas City, Mo., including a first-ever award for the television program, "Up Late," and six for WMUL-FM, Marshall's public radio station.

WMUL-FM also received a first-place Podcast Best of Show award at the 87th Annual National College Media Convention/2008 Associated Press (ACP) Annual College Competition Ceremony, also in Kansas City.

In winning its first award, "Up Late" was helped by an appearance by head baseball coach Jeff Waggoner along with some unorthodox batting practice for his team, a look at a Herd Home, and a little student competition of Hallway Olympics.

"Up Late" is a show that grew out of last year's Introduction to Video Production class taught by instructors Jamie LoFiego and Eric Himes, who both work with Marshall's Instructional Television Channel 25. It is produced entirely by students and has a late-night show quality featuring interviews, skits, ridiculous stunts, guest bands and comedy. LoFiego hosts the show to give it a consistent feel, since the students working on the show change each semester. He said he believes the award reflects not only the good work of the "Up Late" crew, but also the entire radio and television program in the W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

"It is awesome to see that with all of the work that our students put into the show that people outside of our viewing area think we are doing a good job," LoFiego said. "I believe we are developing a following for our show. Every now and then you will hear people say, 'Oh yeah, Up Late - I've seen that show.' Our students do really great work."

Students involved in the class, as well as volunteers who worked on the award-winning Episode 18 include: Ryan Vance, Ryan Zipperian, Andrew Colegrove, Emily McKenna,Will Sutherland, Adam Ede, Chris Atkins, Jeremy Edwards, Lawren Hightower, Stacey Renner, Stephanie Bartram, Stephen Frail, Tiffney Henson, Travis Caffray, Kimberly Burcham, Erin Downard, Francesca Karle, Adam Cavalier and Ben Gibson.

"Up Late" airs on Saturdays from 11 to 11:30 p.m. on MyZTV and on Comcast Channel 25 throughout the week. Suddenlink Communications airs the show on Channels 19 and 22 in its different markets. "Up Late" also can be found online at

The first-place "Up Late" show may be seen online at

In addition to the "Up Late" award, Marshall students received three first-place awards and three finalist awards at the CBI ceremony, which took place in Royal Hall at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown Hotel in Kansas City.

Dr. Chuck G. Bailey, professor of Radio-Television Production and Management in the School of Journalism at Marshall and faculty manager of WMUL-FM, said the students competed with broadcasting students from colleges and universities throughout the United States.

"This contest, in its seventh year, is sponsored by the CBI which administers the contest in cooperation with College Media Advisers Inc. (CMA), the nation's oldest and largest college media organization," Bailey said. "It is an honor to win three out of the 12 first-place radio awards granted by these prestigious organizations."

Bailey said Marshall's radio students have established at WMUL-FM a tradition of being able to successfully compete at the national, regional, or state level with other student-operated college radio stations.

"No college won more first-place awards from CBI than Marshall University," he said. "So this performance is further evidence of the quality of the work performed by our talented broadcasting students." 

The first-place award winning entries were:

Best Radio Newscast
"The 5:00 p.m. Edition of Newscenter 88," broadcast Friday, April 4, 2008. The newscast featured Chelsea Clinton's visit to Marshall's Huntington campus. The students who participated in the newscast were:  

Ryan Vance, senior, Culloden, W. Va. (producer); Kimberly Burcham, a recent graduate, Huntington, W. Va.; (news anchor); Adam Cavalier, senior, Montgomery, W.Va. (news anchor); Andrew Ramspacher, junior, Dublin, Ohio (sports anchor); Meagan Sellards, graduate student, Chapmanville, W.Va. (live drop reporter), and Neera Doss, junior, Milton, W.Va. (live drop reporter).

Best Radio Sports Play-By-Play
WMUL-FM's broadcast of Marshall University versus East Carolina University played at Joan C. Edwards Stadium, Huntington, W.Va., Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007.  The students calling the football game were:

Ryan Epling, graduate student, Wayne, W.Va. (football play-by-play announcer); Brian Dalek, senior, McMechen, W.Va.  (color commentator); Andrew Ramspacher (sideline reporter); Scott Hall, recent master's graduate from Stephens City, Va. (engineer), and Boom Madison, sophomore, Olympia, Wash. (engineer).

 Dalek also was managing editor this fall of The Parthenon, Marshall University's student newspaper.

Best Radio Promotion
"Hair from the Herd" was an event to benefit Locks of Love, a nonprofit that makes real-hair wigs for children who have chronic diseases that result in hair loss, and highlights WMUL-FM's public service commitment.  The haircuts for "Hair from the Herd" were provided by the Huntington School of Beauty Culture.   "Hair from the Herd" resulted in more than 300 inches of hair being donated to Locks of Love.  Meagan Sellards, WMUL-FM's station manager, headed up the event for the campus radio station.

The finalist award winning entries were:

Best Radio News Reporting 
"The Pumpkin House: Trick or Treat Night," written and produced by Adam Cavalier, broadcast during the "5:00 p.m. Edition of Newscenter 88," Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2007.

Best Radio Sports Reporting
"Wood versus Metal," written and produced by Adam Cavalier, broadcast during the "5:00 p.m. Edition of Newscenter 88," Thursday, March, 13, 2008.

Best Regularly Scheduled Program
"The Last Show Tonight: Best Show Ever," written and produced by Adam Cavalier and Brian Dalek, broadcast Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2007.

WMUL's first-place Podcast Best of Show award from the 2008 Associated Press (ACP) Annual College Competition was for a 30-minute special titled "The Conference USA Report-70s Edition," broadcast for the first time Friday, Oct. 24, 2008. It was a 70s-themed edition of a regular sports program that airs Friday and Saturday during Marshall University football weekends.

Students who participated in the winning show were host Brian Dalek; and reporters Adam Cavalier; Ryan Epling; Tom Bragg, a senior from Nitro, W.Va.; James Roach, a junior from Richwood, W.Va., and Tony Viola, a freshman from Follansbee, W.Va.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday December 4, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Students learn science and math during LEGO robotics competition

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Students from several area schools will compete Saturday, Dec. 6 to show off their skills in building and programming LEGO robots at Marshall University's Huntington campus.

The FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) LEGO League program is offered each year to local students to make learning fun and to help students improve their creative thinking.

This year's theme centers on the earth's climate and how it affects the environment around us.  Many of the tasks programmed by the robots center on this theme and the students also have done research to learn the information needed for their projects.

The competition also helps students learn math, since they must use their math skills to program the robots to perform certain tasks. The contest measures the students' abilities to get their robots to perform the tasks in a limited amount of time, and points are based on formulas related to how much of the task was performed.

Teams that win at the local level will go on to the state competition in Wheeling later this month.

The schools involved Saturday include Barboursville Middle School, Milton Middle School, St. Joseph Middle School, Village of Barboursville Elementary, Spring Hill Elementary, St. Joseph Elementary, Kellogg Elementary, Central City Elementary and Southside Elementary.

Public demonstrations and competitions begin at 11 a.m. on the first floor of the Morrow Library on 3rd Avenue.  The event ends at 2 p.m. with an awards presentation.

For more information contact Linda Hamilton, LEGO specialist at Marshall, at 304-696-7166, or parent volunteer Lena Burdette at 304-634-1951

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday December 3, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Director of Graduate Humanities Program edits journal of collaborative research in anthropology

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The first volume of a journal edited by Dr. Luke Eric Lassiter, director of the Graduate Humanities Program at the Marshall University Graduate College and professor of humanities and anthropology, has been published by the University of Nebraska Press.

The journal will be published annually. Volume 2 is scheduled to be released in October 2009, according to Lassiter.

He said "Collaborative Anthropologies" is a forum for dialogue on collaborative research in anthropology and closely related fields.

"But, importantly, the journal goes beyond the kind of interdisciplinary collaboration that implies 'collaborative research' as that between academic colleagues or two or more professional researchers," Lassiter said. "Although it includes discussion about these kinds of collaborative research, the journal has a special focus on the complex collaborations between and among researchers and the communities with which they work - such as when an ethnographer designs a project with research participants who are engaged not as 'subjects' or 'informants' but as partners in a collaborative research effort."

He said many anthropologists have done this kind of collaborative research for a long time, and there are lots of examples, such as his "Other Side of Middletown" book, written by a team of faculty, students, and members of the African American community in Muncie, Ind.

"This journal will provide a collective space for featuring descriptions of such partnerships and projects (as well as many others kinds, including those that don't fit neatly into this type); ultimately, however, it is concerned with charting new theoretical terrains, ones that address broader philosophical questions about the collaborative (and ethical) production of knowledge, the role of community engagement in scholarly production and dissemination, and, importantly, the value of collaborative research to a wider public," Lassiter said.

Dr. David Pittenger, dean of Marshall's College of Liberal Arts, said the new journal is an important contribution to the discipline and "a considerable achievement" for Lassiter.

"Interesting problems in science are best answered from many perspectives rather than from a single academic discipline," Pittenger said. "Eric's work should do much to help social scientists use interdisciplinary perspectives when examining complex human behavior.

"Of course, all of us in the College of Liberal Arts are proud of Eric's many accomplishments. The University is dedicated to promoting scholarship at the highest level. Eric's work demonstrates that the College has much to offer the academic community."

The journal is available for $61 for institutions and $36 for individuals. Checks should be made payable to the University of Nebraska Press and mailed to:

The University of Nebraska Press
P.O. Box 84555
Lincoln, NE 68501-4555

For more information, contact Lassiter at 304-746-1923.

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday December 2, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Children's self-portrait display in Drinko part of student's final project

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - A children's self-portrait display, featuring paintings by the children of Ebenezer Community Outreach Center, is planned from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Dec. 8 in the third-floor atrium of Marshall University's Drinko Library on the Huntington campus.

The paintings are part of a project by Taylor Saunders, a Marshall University graduate student in psychology. Saunders has been volunteering with the children as part of a service learning course on the Psychology of Women & Gender, in which students have to complete a final project. Dr. Wendy Williams is the faculty member supervising Saunders' project.

Saunders' final project with the children includes the reading of a book titled "I Like Myself" by Karen Beaumont and helping them paint self-portraits to promote a positive self image through art.

For more information, contact Saunders at

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday December 2, 2008
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts, 304-696-3296

Choirs, Orchestra to Perform Schubert Mass No. 6

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Singers from the Marshall University Choral Union, University Chorus and Chamber Choir, together with the Marshall University Orchestra, will present two performances of Franz Schubert's Mass No. 6 in E-Flat Major, D. 950 this weekend in Smith Recital Hall at Marshall University. Dr. David Castleberry, professor of music and director of choral activities, will conduct.

Performances are Saturday, Dec. 6 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 7 at 3 p.m. Both will take place in Smith Recital Hall on the Huntington campus. Tickets will be available at the door for $10 for adults and $5 for students and seniors. Marshall students with IDs are admitted free.

"Its beautiful melodies, dramatic settings of text, and fascinating construction make it a rare and exciting listening experience," Castleberry said.

The Marshall University Choral Union joins community and student singers for two performances each year. Members have the opportunity to learn and perform works by great choral composers and to sing side by side with student musicians from Marshall University.  It is an energizing musical collaboration for the students and the community members, according to Castleberry. 

Franz Schubert, known best for his songs, symphonies, and chamber music, composed six settings of the Mass during his brief life. This is his largest, most mature work, Castleberry said, and was written just months before he died.

For further information, contact the Marshall University Department of Music at 304-696-3117.

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday December 2, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Construction on men's and women's basketball locker rooms to get underway soon at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Construction on much-needed new locker and team meeting rooms for Marshall University's men's and women's basketball programs will begin within the next couple of weeks, Athletic Director Bob Marcum announced today.

Marcum said the locker rooms will be located under the south stands in Cam Henderson Center, Marshall's basketball home since 1981. Each locker room will be 3,100 square feet.

"This project will assist our men's and women's basketball programs in being more competitive in Conference USA," Marcum said. "It is a continued effort to improve our venues to make us more competitive in the conference. We all know that new facilities can assist in recruiting efforts."

Exact cost of the new locker rooms has not yet been determined, but Marcum said it could be in the range of $2 million. Bids on the project are due in by 3 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 3.

Marshall has about $800,000 of the money in hand - $600,000 from its facility enhancement fee included in ticket sales and $200,000 from a donor. The Marshall athletic department and the Marshall University Foundation, Inc., will begin a major fund-raising effort to pay off the balance.

"The locker room project just goes to show the commitment our University has to our basketball program," men's Coach Donnie Jones said. "When kids come on campus, their first impression of commitment is usually the facilities. This will showcase to our players and incoming recruits not only our commitment to success, but that of Marshall University."

Marcum said it has been several years since the current locker rooms were last "spruced up." The new ones, he said, will be first class. Plans call for theater film rooms, lounges for players and coaches, locker rooms for players and coaches, flat screen TVs, kitchens and large storage areas to be included in the new locker rooms.

"Not only is this a really-needed project, but it also will allow us to improve the accommodations for the visiting teams," Marcum said. "We will take the present home locker rooms and turn them into the visiting locker rooms."

Women's Coach Royce Chadwick said the new locker rooms are important for a number of reasons.

"This is another side to our joining Conference USA," he said. "We travel to places like UCF and see their outstanding facilities. Now, when UCF comes here, they will leave here saying Marshall's facilities are second to none. They will be in our old locker rooms and they will say, 'they've got really nice facilities at Marshall.' Perception is reality."

Direct Link to This Release

Monday December 1, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Theatre students lead production of 'The Zoo Story'

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - A student-directed production of Edward Albee's "The Zoo Story" will be performed  Friday and Saturday, Dec. 5 and 6, at 8 p.m. in the Francis-Booth Experimental Theatre on Marshall University's Huntington campus. Admission is free and open to the public.

Actors Chris Ferris and Eric Woods, students in Marshall's Department of Theatre, are collaborating with fellow students, director Sean Watkins, stage manager Rachel Kenniston, and lighting designer Erika Courtney, to bring to life a drama observers consider one of Albee's greatest works.

 " 'The Zoo Story' is a psychological thriller in the sense that it makes you think," Watkins said.  "It is Albee's first play, and I think one of his finest.  He has created a situation between two people that causes us as human beings to question ourselves about how we treat one another."

Ferris said of the production, "It provides a social mirror in which the audience can see all aspects of themselves - things they may not want to notice, but are almost certainly there."

The Francis-Booth Experimental Theatre is located on the first floor of the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. 

For further information about this play and/or the performance at the Francis-Booth Experimental Theatre, please call 304-696-ARTS or e-mail Sean Watkins at

Direct Link to This Release

Monday December 1, 2008
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

'Up Late' hosts Huntington's mayor-elect

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - This week's "Up Late" features the only guest to appear on the show carrying a gun.

Longtime Huntington policeman and Cabell County Sheriff Kim Wolfe joins host Jamie LoFiego and the cast of "Up Late." Wolfe was recently elected as Huntington's next mayor.

This week's doorkeeper is Gerry T. Troll and musical guest is Fletchers Grove.

Ryan "Zippy" Zipperain enjoys his last appearance as the show's co-host. The crew looks back at his appearances in previous episodes as well as sharing the outtakes from this season of the award-winning show.

The cast reveals potential new looks after it learns that WSAZ newsman Tim Irr may be getting a makeover.

"Up Late" will air from 11 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 29 on MyZTV and on Comcast Channel 25 throughout the week. Suddenlink Communications is also airing the show on Channels 19 and 22 in its different markets. "Up Late" can be found online at

The show grew out of Marshall's Introduction to Video Production class taught by instructors LoFiego and Eric Himes, who both work with Marshall's Instructional Television Channel 25. It is produced entirely by students and has a late-night show quality featuring interviews, skits, ridiculous stunts, guest bands and comedy.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday December 1, 2008
Contact: Susan Tams, Director of Editorial Services, (304) 746-2038

'Grow With Music' registering for spring

HUNTINGTON, W. Va. - Spring registration for "Grow With Music," a popular program for children ages birth to 5 and their parents, is underway. A discount applies to registrations that take place before Jan. 10, according to Joni Pappas, director of the program, which is offered through the Speech and Hearing Clinic at Marshall University.

"My 3-year-old daughter is currently enrolled in her second session of 'Grow With Music' and continually looks forward to attending every week," said Lisa B. Ross, parent of one of the participants. "I have seen her laugh, sing and dance so happily and with joy."

Classes are available for babies from birth to 18 months; toddlers from 18 to 36 months; 3 year olds, and 4 and 5 year olds. Parent participation is required in the classes for the baby, toddler and 3-year-old categories and optional for the 4- and 5-year-old category. Classes take place in the daytime and early evenings on Mondays through Wednesdays. A maximum of eight children is accepted per class and children with special needs are welcome.

Pappas said the 45-minute sessions are designed to enhance a child's cognitive, social/emotional, speech/language and physical development by using age-appropriate music activities and movement. Emphasis is made on American folk music, with which most of the parents will be familiar, and virtually all of it will be performed live.

" 'Grow With Music' "has afforded our 21-month-old a fun and caring place to learn new communication skills through song, dance, musical instruments and even sign language," said Charlotte Hoffman Norris, another parent-participant. "It has also given me, a working mom, a great opportunity to watch and participate in my son's play and interaction with other children and their parents/grandparents."

Pappas is a board-certified neurologic music therapist specializing in early childhood intervention, special education and older adults. Her private practice has included work in numerous pre-schools, early childhood centers, special education programs, nursing homes and rehabilitative centers in Iowa, Mississippi and Indiana. She also is a music educator, having taught pre-K-12 general and choral music in Dubuque, Iowa. She is currently serving as adjunct faculty for the Department of Music at Marshall.

For information on "Grow with Music," persons may visit the program's Web site at, contact Pappas by e-mailing, or call her at (304) 697-0211.

Direct Link to This Release