September 2010 News Releases

Thursday September 30, 2010
Contact: Ginny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation, , 304-746-1964

Marshall student researchers win top prizes in statewide competition

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University student researchers captured first place in both categories of a competition held earlier this week in Huntington in conjunction with the third statewide STaR (Science, Technology and Research) Symposium.

Melinda E. Varney, a biomedical sciences Ph.D. student from Huntington, was recognized as the "Graduate Researcher of the Year" for her work suggesting that genes involved in engineering bone and processing of fatty acids have a significant influence on bone marrow cells. She received a check for $1,000 and an iPad as her prize.

William A. Kelly, who conducted his research as an undergraduate biology major, was named "Undergraduate Researcher of the Year." Kelly, who is also from Huntington, received $700 and an iPad for his project focused on strategies for increasing biofuel production from microalgae.

Varney and Kelly were among more than 100 undergraduate and graduate researchers who entered the competition this summer by submitting abstracts describing their work. Entries were received from students at nine colleges and universities in West Virginia. From those entries, 24 finalists were selected to display posters featuring their research findings at the symposium, which was held Sept. 26-28 on Marshall's Huntington campus. The finalists also gave a short presentation to a panel of judges. All the students are conducting their research under the mentorship of a faculty member.

Varney's mentor, Dr. Vincent Sollars, an assistant professor of microbiology, immunology and molecular biology, said, "The project Mindy has devoted her graduate research to has been a particularly long and involved genetic study that has focused our increasing understanding of leukemia. I was heartened to see her hard work received well at the symposium."

Varney attributed her successful entry in large part to the support of Marshall faculty and staff, as well as that of her fellow students. She expressed particular appreciation to Sollars and her sponsors.

She added, "I feel extremely honored and grateful. I have tremendous gratitude for those who have guided and supported me along the way. The NASA West Virginia Space Grant Consortium has sponsored my work with multiple fellowships. Their investment has provided me with abundant opportunities to succeed."

Dr. Jagan Valluri, Marshall professor of biological sciences and Kelly's faculty mentor, says undergraduate research is invaluable for students.

"From my experience, involving undergraduates in original research allows them to gain important lab skills, along with knowledge of research design and making presentations at scientific meetings," he said. "Over the years, I have mentored dozens of students who went to graduate school and to work for biotechnology companies because of the research experience and skills they gained as undergraduates."

Kelly agreed, saying, "The symposium was an amazing opportunity to network with student and faculty researchers from other universities in West Virginia. I look forward to attending the event again in the future."

Kelly thanked Valluri and his co-investigators, fellow students Jacob Eller, Evan Riley and Jacob Miller, for their support of his research.

"Without Dr. Valluri's excellent assistance throughout my undergraduate experience, I would never have taken the path into research," he added.

Runners-up in the student research competition were Heaven Oliver-Kozup of West Virginia University in the graduate student category and Kiril Tuntevski of the University of Charleston in the undergraduate student category. They received prizes of $750 and $600, respectively.

The biennial StaR Symposium is hosted by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission. This year's program focused on the national and state outlooks for science, technology and research; technology-based economic development; cutting-edge research and infrastructure; and commercialization of intellectual property. The symposium's theme, "Sustainability: How Science, Technology and Research Can Sustain Our Future," was carried throughout panel discussions on energy, the environment, cyberinfrastructure and the economy.

For more information about the STaR Symposium or the student poster competition, contact Jessica Tice at 304-558-4128, ext. 6, or


Photos: Marshall University student researchers Melinda E. Varney (top) and William A. Kelly pose for photos with Dr. Paul Hill (left), vice chancellor for science and research with the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, and (right) Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp. Varney was recognized as the "Graduate Researcher of the Year" and Kelly was named "Undergraduate Researcher of the Year." Photos by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday September 30, 2010
Contact: Susan Tams, Director of Editorial Services, 304-746-2038

Marshall University South Charleston campus faculty invites potential graduate/RBA students to open house

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Marshall University invites potential students to learn about the variety of degrees conveniently offered at the South Charleston campus during an open house event on Thursday, Oct. 7.

Doors will be open from 4 to 7 p.m. in the Robert C. Byrd Academic Center, 100 Angus E. Peyton Dr., just off the Kanawha Turnpike in South Charleston.

Dr. Rudy Pauley, Associate Vice President for Outreach and Continuing Studies, hopes to see a solid turnout for the event, particularly in times when many find themselves facing career changes. 

"The South Charleston campus provides a multitude of opportunities for people to enrich their education and advance their careers," Pauley said.  "If you have ever considered completing your bachelor's degree or earning a master's degree, I encourage you to come and meet our faculty to learn how we can help you meet your goals."

Several educational opportunities are accessible at the South Charleston campus. Depending on career goals and experience, people can apply to one of nearly 50 programs. Several programs will be represented during the open house including: 

  • Graduate School of Education and Professional Development - Special Education; Counseling; School Psychology; Elementary and Secondary Education; Reading Education; Leadership Studies; and the Doctor of Education program.
  • College of Business - MBA and Executive MBA; Health Care Administration; Doctorate in Management Practice in Nurse Anesthesia; Human Resources Management.
  • College of Information Technology and Engineering - Engineering with emphases in Engineering Management and Environmental Engineering; Environmental Science, Information Systems and Safety; Technology Management with emphases in Information Security; Information Technology; Environmental Management; Manufacturing Systems; and Transportation.
  • College of Liberal Arts - Graduate Humanities.
  • RBA program - The Marshall University Reagents Bachelor of Arts degree program allows students who started college, but never finished, to complete their degrees. RBA Today is a unique way to earn a bachelor's degree through flexibility in class scheduling, potential credit for work experience and the option of taking online, evening or weekend classes.

Admissions personnel, financial aid counselors, veterans' affairs experts and bookstore staff will be on hand to answer questions. Visitors may also view the After-Hours Artists Exhibit in the Marshall University Library located on the South Charleston campus. The show, sponsored by the MU Graduate Humanities program, features the artistry of people in professions other than art. Charleston psychologist Frank Grant's work focuses on the beauty of found or discarded objects and is currently on display.

To access information about the campus online, go to For more information, e-mail or call Dr. Teresa Eagle, 304-746-8924,

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday September 30, 2010
Contact: Leah Clark Payne, Media Communications Specialist, 304-696-6397

Autism Training Center at Marshall University welcomes national expert

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. The West Virginia Autism Training Center at Marshall University is sponsoring the first in a series of guest lecture workshops featuring nationally known speakers in the field of autism spectrum disorders.

Dr. Valerie Paradiz is scheduled to speak at the first workshop, which runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 5 in the Marshall University Memorial Student Center, room BE 5, on the Huntington campus.

Paradiz is the developer of the Integrated Self Advocacy ISA, a curriculum and certification training series for educators and therapists. Her work has been featured in the New York Times, Redbook Magazine, The Guardian and on National Public Radio.  

"Dr. Paradiz has developed a state-of-the-art curriculum to teach individuals with autism spectrum disorders and other related disabilities to understand their own sensory and learning needs and become their own advocates," said Dr. Barbara Becker-Cottrill, Executive Director of the West Virginia Autism Training Center.   "She truly understands the great need for this type of curriculum as she received an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis as an adult and has a teenage son who also has the diagnosis."

Families registered with the West Virginia Autism Training Center and Marshall University students and employees may attend the day-long seminar for free.  The cost for others is $20 and may be paid at the door.   Pre-registration is available by calling 1-800-344-5115.

For more information, contact Karen Midkiff with the West Virginia Autism Training Center at 1-800-344-5115.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 29, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

'Thundering Word' performs well in tournament at Western Kentucky

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University "Thundering Word" Speech and Debate team finished sixth out of 24 teams last weekend at a tournament hosted by the defending national champion, Western Kentucky University, in Bowling Green, Ky.

The tournament was won by Ohio University with the University of Alabama finishing second.

Individual highlights for Marshall were Kayla Johnson, a Gallipolis, Ohio, junior, fifth in Informative Speaking; Ryan Jackson, a Huntington junior, seventh in Informative Speaking; Johnson and Jackson, eighth in Dramatic Duo; and Tyler Rice, a Huntington freshman, top novice in After Dinner Speaking.

The Thundering Word travels this weekend to George Mason University and the following weekend to West Chester University.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday September 27, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Colleges Against Cancer to host Breast Cancer Walk at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Colleges Against Cancer of Marshall University will host its first Breast Cancer Walk on Saturday, Oct. 23.

The walk, scheduled from 4 to 6 p.m., will take place on Buskirk Field on the Huntington campus. Registration fee is $20, and each walker registered by Monday, Oct. 11, will receive a t-shirt.

Various fundraising booths will be located along the walking path for walkers to visit. Proceeds from the walk benefit the American Cancer Society.

Registration forms may be obtained by e-mailing Kristina Isaacs at Once completed, they may be returned to the American Cancer Society, 611 7th Ave., Huntington, WV 25701.

For more information, e-mail Isaacs or call her at 304-419-2810.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday September 27, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

MU assistant professor receives poetry award

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Dr. Rachael Peckham, an assistant professor of English at Marshall University, has won the 2010 Robert Watson Poetry Award sponsored by Spring Garden Press, located in Greensboro, N.C., and storySouth.

Her winning manuscript - Muck Fire - will be published as limited-edition, letter-pressed chapbook in fall 2011. In addition, Peckham will receive a cash award of $500.

A recipient of the M.F.A. in creative writing from Georgia College and State University and the Ph.D. in creative nonfiction from Ohio University, Peckham joined Marshall's faculty in 2009. She currently serves as advisor to Et Cetera, the university's literary and arts journal for students, and as a writing mentor for Yeager Scholars.

In addition to creative writing classes, including a creative nonfiction workshop, Peckham teaches courses in memoir and autobiography and contemporary literature. She lives in Huntington with her husband, Joel, also a poet and creative writing teacher at the University of Cincinnati's Clermont College, and their son, Darius.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 24, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts, , (304) 696-3296

Marshall to host Chopin concerts in observance of 200th birth anniversary

- Marshall University's Department of Music will join celebrations around the world this year of the 200th anniversary of the birth of composer Frdric Chopin (1810-49). 

Two all-Chopin piano recital programs are planned for the fall semester. The first, at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 3, will  feature former Marshall faculty member Dr. Harsha Abeyaratne. The second, at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 19, will be played by Dr. Claudio Barros from Brazil. 

Both concerts are free and open to the public and will take place in Smith Recital Hall on Marshall's Huntington campus.

"Chopin is one of the most influential composers of piano music in both content and technique," said Dr. Leslie Petteys, professor of piano at Marshall. "Every student of the piano must study Chopin. However, his music is so popular that we all have heard some of his works in the soundtracks to movies and television shows. These are wonderful opportunities for Marshall students, because they get to hear two very fine concert pianists play some of the works of Chopin that they have worked on in lessons." 

In addition, the guest pianists will conduct master classes for Marshall students, in essence giving them a lesson "on stage" before an audience. Abeyaratne's master class will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 2, and Barros will work with three different Marshall students at 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 18.  Both classes are also in Smith Recital Hall and are free and open to the public.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 24, 2010
Contact: Jamie LoFiego , "Up Late," , 304-696-2967

'Up Late' features local southern rocker

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Local southern rocker Bud Carroll of "The Southern Souls" fame joins the cast of "Up Late" this week.

Carroll, a native of Ona, W.Va., promotes the Huntington Music and Arts Festival coming up Oct. 2 at Ritter Park. The popular local musician will be going back to his roots as he rejoins his former band, "American Minor," after a five-year hiatus.

LoFiego also talks about an infomercial that stars "Up Late" co-host Kyle Hobstetter, who took the acting job to make some extra money. And after three years of waiting, the crew airs a music video shot in Ashland, Ky., detailing the legendary Duct Tape Bandit.

Guitarist and singer Drew Blake of "The Star Line Drive" from Lynchburg, Va., visits the set as musical guest.

This episode of "Up Late" will air on MyZ-TV at 11 p.m. Saturday and on WSAZ at 4:30 a.m. Sunday. The show also can be seen on Comcast Channel 25 throughout the week and on Suddenlink Communications 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

Thursday September 23, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Approximately 200 high school students to visit Marshall University on Green & White Day

Approximately 200 high school students are expected to participate in Marshall University's Green & White Day on Saturday, Sept. 25.  The event is an open house that will take place on Marshall's Huntington campus.   

Students from 14 states have registered to attend, according to Beth Wolfe, Marshall's Director of Recruitment.

"We are excited they are coming; we love meeting new people," Wolfe said. "And, we love showing off Marshall University. Green & White Day is the perfect opportunity for the students to tour the campus and ask questions not only of faculty and staff, but current students."

Check-in will begin at 8:30 a.m. in the Memorial Student Center followed by a program - which includes remarks from President Stephen J. Kopp - in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. Green & White Day concludes at about 2 p.m.

The Marshall Maniacs will be providing students attending Green & White Day with free tickets to MU's football game with Ohio University, which will be played at 7 p.m. Saturday at Joan C. Edwards Stadium.

For more information, contact Wolfe at 304-696-6007.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 22, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall University Visiting Writers Series announces fall readings

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University Visiting Writers Series has announced its fall schedule of author appearances on the Huntington campus.  Noted poets and prose-writers from around the nation and West Virginia will be reading from exciting new work.

Marshall Professor Art Stringer, coordinator of the series, calls this fall's calendar "a fresh collaboration" between the College of Liberal Arts and local patrons.

Poet Grace Bauer will appear at 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 7 in room BE-5 of the Memorial Student Center.  She is the author of six poetry collections, including Beholding Eye and Retreats and Recognitions, which won the Lost Horse Prize from the University of Idaho Press.  Widely recognized with awards from Arts Councils in Virginia and Nebraska, she has taught at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln since 1994, where she serves as Coordinator of Creative Writing and as a guest editor for Prairie Schooner.

Poet Heather Hartley, who grew up in West Virginia, will read at 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 28, in the Memorial Student Center's Shawkey Room.  She is the author of Knock Knock, a new poetry collection from Carnegie Mellon University Press.  Her poems, essays and interviews have appeared in Tin House, Mississippi Review, Post Road and other magazines.  She is currently Paris Editor for Tin House magazine, curates Shakespeare & Company Bookshop's weekly reading series, and teaches creative writing and poetry at the American University of Paris.

Writer Dinty Moore will read from his work at 8 p.m. Monday, Nov. 15, in the Shawkey Room. He is the author of five books of prose.  His memoir, Between Panic and Desire, was winner of the 2009 Grub Street Nonfiction Book Prize. Moore has published essays and stories in The Southern Review, Harpers, and The New York Times Sunday Magazine, among many others.  Writers Digest Books has just released his new book, Crafting the Personal Essay: A Guide for Writing and Publishing Creative Non-Fiction.  His awards include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Fiction. He teaches at Ohio University and directs the Creative Writing program. 

Area writers Chris Green and Marie Manilla will read from their newly published work at 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 2, also in the Shawkey Room. Green is the author of the poetry collection Rush Light and teaches writing and Appalachian literature at Marshall. Manilla is a graduate of Marshall and author of two books: Shrapnel, a novel, and Still Life with Plums, a collection of short stories from West Virginia University Press.

All readings are free to the public.  The Visiting Writers Series is supported by the Marshall English Department, the College of Liberal Arts, the Office of the Provost, and the law firm of Jenkins-Fenstermaker.

For more information, contact Stringer in Marshall's English Department at 304-696-2403.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 22, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

MU students can seek guidance for career paths on Sept. 30

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University students seeking guidance about their potential careers are invited to attend the Marshall Mentoring Network meeting, "Network and Nibble," from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 30, at the Marshall University Foundation Hall, Home of the Erickson Alumni Center.

Participants in the event will first hear about the new Marshall Mentoring Network. Alumni mentors will then share their individual career stories, how they chose career paths and decided majors, and the steps they took to get where they are today. Immediately following, students will have the opportunity to ask questions. The evening will close with an opportunity for the students and alumni to meet and talk with one another.

MU Alumni Affairs and Career Services are sponsoring the event. Light refreshments will be provided.

For more information, contact Debby Stoler at Career Services by phone at 304-696-6679, or by e-mail at, or Tish Littlehales, director of Alumni Affairs, by phone at 304-696-2523 or by e-mail at

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 22, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Local military leaders visit Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Kelly Sweetman, Marshall University's new director of military and veterans affairs, recently invited local leaders to visit the Huntington campus and learn how the university is ensuring that veterans and current military personnel are successful students.

Representatives from the Marine Corps, Reserve Officers Training Corps, Air Force, Army and Army National Guard participated in a roundtable discussion and toured the campus.

"I chose to take an approach that involved asking our military to have input into what we were doing here at Marshall," Sweetman said, "because I felt for the university to have an excellent program, we needed to have our local commands involved in building it. We wanted to hear their voices and listen to their experiences. I am really impressed with how they came on board.

"Marshall is their local university and they were excited to be asked to participate in building our military programs. We have great local commanders and service members and I think uniting the group brought so much diversity and experience to the table."

The group also met with Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Dr. Gayle Ormiston, as well as Dr. Frances Hensley, associate vice president for academic affairs, Steve Hensley, dean of student affairs, Dr. Rudy Pauley, associate vice president for outreach and continuing studies, and Nick Blankenship, president of Marshall University Vets4Vets.

Vets4Vets is a new student support organization whose members work to provide a supportive atmosphere to help ease the transition for veterans from the military way of life to student life.


Photo: Local officers from the Marine Corps, Reserve Officers Training Corps, the Air Force, Army and Army National Guard recently participated in a roundtable discussion and toured Marshall University's Huntington campus. Front row, left to right, are 1st Lt. Charles Hansen, USMC; Kelly Sweetman, MU Director of Military and Veterans Affairs; and 1st Sgt. Nathaniel Glover, USMC. In the back line, left to right, are Andre Gamble, an assistant with MU Military and Veterans Affairs; Kim White, a counselor at Marshall; Major Michael Stinnett, MU ROTC; Master Sgt. Frank Wilson, USAF; Tech. Sgt. Nathan Shaw, USAF; Sgt. Eric Carico, U.S. Army; Sgt. Kevin Fry, Army; and Sgt. 1st Class John Valdez, Army National Guard. Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday September 21, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall announces top 10 scoring seniors on Collegiate Learning Assessment

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Last spring, 90 Marshall University seniors voluntarily took the Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA), a test that measures students' critical thinking, analytic reasoning, problem solving and written communication skills.

Dr. Mary Reynolds, director of assessment at Marshall, said the CLA is an open-ended test in which the students do a lot of writing and solve real-world problems.

"As a group, Marshall's seniors' performance on the CLA last spring was outstanding, with the majority of students performing at or above expected levels," Reynolds said.  "We are very proud of the accomplishments of our students and their professors!"

The following 10 students scored the highest on the test. They are listed in alphabetical order with their hometowns, majors and colleges:

  • Laurel C. Ackison, Fayetteville, W.Va.; Microbiology, Ecology-Evolutionary Biology and Spanish; College of Science and College of Liberal Arts
  • Halima Al-Qawasmi, Huntington, W.Va.; Cellular-Molecular Biology; College of Science
  • Lesley R. Bailey, Dunbar, W.Va.; Marketing; Lewis College of Business
  • Tara L. Ballard, Bradley, W.Va.; Accounting and Finance; Lewis College of Business
  • Paul D. Cook, Huntington, W.Va.; Education, History and Psychology; College of Education and Human Services and College of Liberal Arts
  • Mark A. Faltaous, Huntington, W.Va.; Biomedical Science; College of Science
  • Rachel C. Kenaston, Lewisburg, W.Va.; Theatre; College of Fine Arts
  • Rebecca L. Mazzone, South Point, Ohio; Secondary Education and English; College of Education and Human Services and College of Liberal Arts
  • Darcie Owens, Winter Haven, Fla.; History and Japanese; College of Liberal Arts
  • Keith E. Peck, Leon, W.Va.; English; College of Liberal Arts

For more information, contact Reynolds at 304-696-2987.

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday September 21, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Fall General Faculty Meeting set for Sept. 29 at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The fall General Faculty Meeting of Marshall University's 2010-11 academic year will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 29 in the Francis-Booth Experimental Theatre of the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center.

The agenda will consist of welcoming remarks by the Faculty Senate Chair, Dr. Cam Brammer; singing of the Star Spangled Banner by Dr. Larry Stickler; introduction of new administrators by Provost Dr. Gayle Ormiston; introduction of 70 new faculty by Brammer and School of Medicine Associate Dean for Clinical Affairs Dr. Joseph Werthammer; a State of the Faculty Address by Brammer; and a State of the University Address by University President Dr. Stephen J. Kopp.

All faculty, staff, students and members of the public are invited to attend. After the meeting a reception to honor the new university personnel will be held in the lobby of the Performing Arts Center.

New administrative positions to be introduced are:

Dr. Robert Bookwalter, interim dean, College of Education & Human Services; Dr. Michael Prewitt, dean, College of Health Professions; Dr. Kellie Bean, associate dean, College of Liberal Arts; Dr. Susan Gilpin, associate dean, Honors College; Dr. Thelma "Sissy" Isaacs, associate dean, College of Education & Human Services; and Dr. Nicki Locascio, associate dean, Honors College.

New faculty to be introduced are:

College of Fine Arts - Ian Hagarty, Nicole Perrone and Margaret Richardson

College of Health Professions - Won-Youl Bay, Nancy Dunn, Jana Hovland, Vickie Justus, Susan Konz, Penny Kroll, Bane McCracken, Tammy Minor and Jeanne Widener

College of Liberal Arts - Estee Beck, Jody Bishop, Allison Carey, Linda Cole, Molly Daniel, Robert Deal, Godwin Djietror, Benjamin Egea, Robert Ellison, Kristi Fondren, Anna Harris, Michael Householder, Ikuyo Kawada, Mallory Legg, Tracie McKinney, Jonathan Platte, W. Daniel Ray, II, Shawn Schulenberg, James Smith, Laura Sonderman, Walter Squire and Benjamin White

College of Science - Paul Constantino, Mary Crytzer, Xiaojuan Fan, Tracy Marsh, Shannon Miller, Patrick Riley, Stacy Scudder, Laura Stapleton, Devon Tivener and John Winfrey

Elizabeth McDowell Lewis College of Business - William Canterbury, Paul Drass, Anil Gurung, Nancy Lankton, Robin McCutcheon, Ivan Muslin, Anushri Rawat and David Spudich

Graduate School of Education & Professional Development - Amy Cottle, Cynthia Kolsun and Louis Watts

Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine - Wesam Bolkhir, Kristina Bryant-Melvin, Samantha Cook, Susan Flesher, Guillermo Madero Garza, John Jasko, April Kilgore, William Nitardy, Julie Phenco, Audra Pritt, Frankie Puckett, Yaser Rayyan and Elias Shattahi

University Libraries - Kelli Johnson and Eryn Roles.

For more information, contact Bernice Bullock with Marshall's faculty senate at 304-696-4376.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday September 20, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Successful young entrepreneurs will share their stories, secrets as Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour visits Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Entrepreneurs in their 20s will share stories and secrets of their incredible success when the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour (EET) visits Marshall University's Huntington campus on Thursday, Sept. 23.

The tour is a high-energy, half-day event that takes place from 3 to 7 p.m. at the Marshall University Foundation Hall, Home of the Erickson Alumni Center. Workshops, speed networking and a panel discussion are scheduled, along with the two keynote speakers - Michael Simmons, 28, and Brian Ruby, 26.

Simmons, one of the three creators of the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour, co-founded his first business, Princeton WebSolutions (PWS), when he was 16 years old. PWS was later rated the number one youth-run web development company in the nation by Youngbiz Magazine. In 2006, Simmons was named by Business Week as one of the Top 25 entrepreneurs under 25.

Ruby founded molecular imaging equipment maker Carbon Nanoprobes in 2003 in his Columbia University dorm room and has since raised about $4 million from institutional and private investors. After six years doing research, Carbon Nanoprobes is now transitioning to equipment sales, and Ruby expects about $1 million in revenue this year.

The moderator for the tour's visit to Marshall will be Bert Gervais, a.k.a. "The Mentor Guy," who is one of America's most in-demand professional speakers. He is an author, speaker and award-winning entrepreneur. His first company, an Internet startup which sold in 2009, garnered many awards including the Entrepreneurs Organization's "East Coast Student Entrepreneur of the Year" award for 2006 and 2007.

The purpose of having the tour at Marshall University is three-fold:

  • To provide a positive outreach event to increase K-12 exposure and recruitment to the Marshall campus;
  • To encourage campus students  to participate in entrepreneurship behavior and provide a venue and contacts for innovative students;
  • To empower an interdisciplinary campus team to coordinate the many campus resources that will serve our graduates who will pursue creating their own business.

"The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour is a wonderful opportunity for our students and high school students from the community to learn firsthand from successful entrepreneurs who have used their extraordinary talents to achieve business success at a very young age," Marshall President Stephen J. Kopp said. "Those attending are certain to gain important insights about entrepreneurialism and how they, too, can translate their ideas and interests into successful business start-ups of their own. They can dream big and, most importantly, make those dreams come true."   

The event is sponsored by Marshall University's Office of the President, MU Online College in the High School, the Center for Business and Economic Research, the Marshall University Research Corp. and Huntington Area Development Council (HADCO).

The Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour is the first and only nationwide entrepreneurship tour. Created in 2006, the tour features many of California's top young entrepreneurs who have made, or sold companies for, millions of dollars and/or made a huge impact before the age of 30.

The panel discussion features Gervais as the moderator, and local panelists Derek Gregg, Justin Swick and Nathan Myers, all of whom are Marshall University graduates. Other highlights include local K-12 students, including award-winning students from Cabell Midland High School.

Gregg is a founder and Chief Operating Officer of Vandalia Research, Inc. Vandalia Research is a biotechnology custom manufacturing organization specializing in the large-scale production of DNA sequences. It is the first company to successfully scale-up the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) from an analytical tool to a viable large-scale manufacturing process, enabling DNA sequences to be made more efficiently and cost-effectively. Gregg  has a BS in Integrated Science & Technology from Marshall University.

Swick has been involved in the biomanufacturing industry for six years and is currently head of the engineering department at Vandalia Research.  Prior to this he developed process automation instrumentation for research projects at Marshall University.  His experience is chiefly in control systems design, mechanical design, and fabrication. Swick holds a bachelor's degree in Integrated Science and Technology from Marshall.

Myers graduated from the Marshall University Lewis College of Business in 2004 with a Bachelor's degree in Marketing. He and his family decided to start a family owned and operated restaurant franchise, The Pita Pit. In March of 2007, they opened the doors for business after months of back-breaking labor and sleepless nights. Soon after the opening, he understood how much the preparation, planning, and hard work paid off. The Pita Pit is successful and well-received by the Huntington community.


Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour
Marshall Foundation Hall/Erickson Alumni Center
Thursday, Sept. 23
Schedule of events

2 to 3 p.m.: Onsite registration and displays

3 to 3:30 p.m.: Event introduction, featuring Marshall President Stephen J. Kopp, Keri Fridley from the West Virginia Business Plan Competition and EET representatives 

3:30 to 4 p.m.: first keynote speaker, Michael Simmons. "How he did it story" with lessons learned

4 to 4:45 p.m.: workshop - customized idea/creation and business startup with action plan and accountability

4:45 to 5 p.m.: Speed Networking, EET. They will interact with the audience on idea creation.

5 to 5:30 p.m.: K-12 team, displays available until 5:30 p.m. and break. Cabell Midland team will be introduced.

5:30 to 6 p.m.: second keynote speaker, Brian Ruby. "How he did it story" with lessons learned

6 to 6:50 p.m.: Extreme Entrepreneurship Panel, EET Moderator Bert Gervais and student entrepreneurs Derek Gregg, Justin Swick and Nathan Myers. Panelists choose 1-2 questions to answer and open up for questions.

6:50 to 7 p.m.: Event wrap-up with EET Moderator Bert Gervais, final reminders


Photos: Michael Simmons (top), Brian Ruby (middle) and Bert Gervais will participate in the Extreme Entrepreneurship Tour Thursday, Sept. 23 on Marshall University's Huntington campus.

Direct Link to This Release

Monday September 20, 2010
Contact: Donna Heron, United States EPZ, Region III-Office of Public Affairs, 215-814-5113

Marshall University expands sustainability partnership with EPA, raises bar on environmental goals

HUNTINGTON, W. Va. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's mid-Atlantic region joined with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection in recognizing Marshall University for expanding its environmental goals under EPA's Sustainability Partnership Program.

EPA Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin and WVDEP Cabinet Secretary Randy Huffman met with Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp today to sign the agreement, which formalizes the working partnership.       

"Today, Marshall is stepping forward as a leader among universities in promoting sustainability," said U.S. EPA's mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin. "By joining with EPA, Marshall is not only working to reduce its own carbon footprint but also helping to create the next generation of environmental leadership."

Marshall University is no stranger to environmental activities that protect the planet and conserve resources. Currently, the school serves 22 counties in West Virginia through its Southern West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center. The brownfields program is a major vehicle for converting derelict or formerly contaminated land into useful and productive property.  The program includes grants for assessment and clean-up. 

On campus, Marshall University is implementing innovative programs to reduce waste streams and greenhouse gases through a bike loan program, providing refillable water-bottles and hydration stations, installing LED lights, using reusable bags made from recycled materials,  and creating, at students' request, a "green fee" which is being used to help fund the university's sustainability efforts.

But university officials believe there is more to be done, and they have joined EPA's Sustainability Partnerships Program (SPP) in part to further their efforts even more. Future goals include conducting a campus sustainability assessment, implementing comprehensive composting and biodiesel projects, developing and maintaining a rain garden.

In addition, Marshall is committed to increasing on-campus recycling and awareness through participation in the 2011 RecyleMania competition.  RecycleMania is a friendly competition that pits nearby colleges and universities, especially arch rivals, for the glory of being recycling champions.

"By their very design, universities can have a significant impact on the environment," said Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp. "That impact, however, does not have to be negative. Through mindful incorporation of sustainable practices, we are proving here that working toward a greener and healthier future for the entire Marshall University community is not only possible, but can be done with small steps, in manageable stages, realistically and affordably."

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection has entered into an agreement with EPA and is helping to promote SPP throughout the state.

"I commend Marshall University for being the first school in West Virginia to sign the Sustainability Partnership Agreement," said WVDEP Cabinet Secretary Randy Huffman. "By reducing its operating costs through energy efficiency, water conservation and waste reduction and purchasing local products and using local services, Marshall University is heading in the right direction."

The Sustainability Partnership is an innovative program developed by EPA's mid-Atlantic region to create a one-stop shopping approach for organizations that use large quantities of energy, water, and natural resources and want to go green.  Instead of dealing with each of EPA's voluntary programs individually, EPA staff will work out a comprehensive "green" plan for organizations that often saves money and makes good business sense. The overall goal of the SPP is to minimize the use of energy, resources and waste generation in the mid-Atlantic states.

For information on the Sustainability Partnership, go to: or call, 800-438-2474.


Photo:  Marshall University President Stephen J. Kopp, standing, watches as EPA Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin signs an agreement, formalizing the working partnership  between the U.S. EPA and Marshall University. Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 17, 2010
Contact: Ginny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation, 304-746-1964

Researchers awarded more than $1 million for breast cancer studies

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Two researchers at Marshall University have been awarded federal funds totaling more than $1 million to assess the effects of omega-3 fatty acids on breast cancer development.

The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) Breast Cancer Research Program has awarded Dr. Elaine Hardman, associate professor in the Department of Biochemistry and Microbiology at the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, and Dr. Philippe Georgel, associate professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, competitive grants of $460,249 and $320,750, respectively. Hardman and Georgel received two of only 18 grants awarded nationwide through the program.

Over the next two years, Hardman and Georgel will use the funds to confirm earlier observations that consumption of canola oil, as a source of omega-3 fatty acid, in the maternal diet of mice could reduce risk for breast cancer in the offspring, and to identify the genetic changes associated with a maternal diet that contains omega-3 fatty acid. They hope to find out how canola oil is altering the expression of genes, with the goal of developing a panel of biomarkers to assess risk for breast cancer development in humans.

A third grant of $266,000 to Hardman from the National Institutes of Health will fund the final year of a related four-year study.

According to Hardman, the studies highlight the importance of diet in altering - either reducing or increasing - cancer risk and the importance of maternal diet in cancer risk of the offspring.

"Clinically, this is exciting! We know that maternal diet is important for the immediate health of the baby but are just beginning to learn of the importance for long-term health," she said. "If a woman can be very careful of her diet for the time of gestation and lactation, the baby may have reduced risk for not only cancer but also heart disease and diabetes."

Hardman said collaboration is the key to success in today's research environment.

She said, "At the conclusion of a previous study, I realized that the maternal diet containing a small amount of omega-3 fatty acids from canola oil was reducing breast cancer risk in the female offspring, even if the baby was weaned to a usual diet. This had to be an epigenetic influence - changes in gene expression not due to a mutation but due to markers placed on the chromatin. Dr. Georgel is an expert in changes in chromatin structure, so I needed his expertise to find out what was going on."

Hardman said their brief preliminary studies demonstrated a change in chromatin structure associated with changed gene expression that could reduce risk for breast cancer, and paved the way for the new DOD grants.

Hardman said, "This research illustrates the importance of collaboration in modern research. Dr. Georgel has important skills and knowledge that I do not have and vice versa. Together we can do far better than either alone."

Georgel added that the team's work also highlights the importance of studies of epigenetic events, or events that alter the activity of genes without changing their sequence.

"The generation of disease-specific epigenome maps will provide complementary and crucial information to the already well-established genome map," he said.

Hardman also said the grants will serve as a good foundation for the new Marshall University Nutrition and Cancer Center, which will support multiple researchers.

Dr. John Maher, vice president for research and executive director of the Marshall University Research Corporation, congratulated Hardman and Georgel, adding that these newest grants help build on the university's growing reputation for its outstanding biomedical research programs.

Maher said, "The fact that Dr. Hardman and Dr. Georgel's work was selected for funding by the Department of Defense from more than 100 proposals is further proof that Marshall's faculty and cancer research programs are top-notch. Their studies will lead to better prevention and treatment options for some of the most pressing health concerns of our time."

Hardman said once these studies are complete, she and Georgel may turn their attention to exploring whether or not diet changes later in life will also reduce cancer risk by the same or different mechanisms.

For more information about the Marshall University Nutrition and Cancer Center, visit


Photo:  Dr. Elaine Hardman, right, and Dr. Philippe Georgel of Marshall University are investigating the effects of omega-3 fatty acids on breast cancer development. They recently received two of only 18 grants awarded nationwide by the U.S. Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program. Photo by Rick Haye/Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday September 16, 2010
Contact: GInny Painter, Communications Director, Marshall University Research Corporation,, 304-746-1964

Marshall University receives $4.7 million for Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University has received $4.7 million in federal funding to support the new Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems at the university's Robert C. Byrd Biotechnology Science Center.

The funding, which was announced yesterday by U.S. Senators Jay Rockefeller and Carte Goodwin and U.S. Congressman Nick Rahall, was added to Fiscal Year 2009 and 2010 Senate Appropriations bills at the request of the late Senator Robert C. Byrd. U.S. Department of Energy officials have formally released $2.9 million, with an additional $1.8 million expected soon.

Marshall President Dr. Stephen J. Kopp applauded the announcement and expressed appreciation to the Congressional delegation for their support of the new center and research at the university.

"Our Congressional delegation believes very strongly in the potential of the Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems, because advances in the center's labs can make a real difference in the health and welfare of our citizens," Kopp said. "Senator Rockefeller's leadership in helping to fulfill Senator Byrd's intentions regarding the center, along with the whole-hearted support of Senator Goodwin and Congressman Rahall, continue to be invaluable as we build our research programs. We salute them for their dedication to Marshall University and our entire region."

Researchers at the Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems will focus on designing, developing and fabricating state-of-the-art diagnostic devices for cancer, cardiovascular disorders, diabetes, dementia, infant care, and air and water quality.

Center Director Dr. Eric Blough said, "Work at the center will help scientists, physicians and the public better understand and integrate the implications and applications of nanotechnologies, particularly as they unfold over the next decade. The center also will play an important role in stimulating unprecedented interdisciplinary collaboration nationally among faculty members and students in the medical, biological, chemical, physical and life sciences, and engineering."

Dr. Chuck Somerville, dean of the Marshall University College of Science, congratulated Blough and his colleagues, saying, "During the last seven years Dr. Blough's research program has benefited from significant investment from both federal and state sources, as well as local resources here at Marshall. That investment has paid tremendous dividends by allowing his team to move aggressively into an area that combines the power of nanotechnology with our growing understanding of cellular and molecular biology. The research made possible through this funding will further advance our understanding of basic biology, and will lead to revolutionary changes in how we detect and treat diseases."

An additional $2 million for the center recently was approved in the Senate Appropriations process. This legislation must be passed by the full Senate and House of Representatives in the coming months before becoming law.

For more information about the Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems, visit


Photo: Dr. Eric Blough, director of the Center for Diagnostic Nanosystems at Marshall University.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 15, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Week of Service and Volunteer Fair planned at Marshall University

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The 2010 Marshall University Week of Service and Volunteer Fair, sponsored by MU's Office of Volunteer Service, take place next week on the Huntington campus and throughout the community.

Lisa Martin, Marshall's director of volunteer services, said the Week of Service, scheduled for Sept. 20-25, is an expanded version of the Day of Service, previously conducted each fall at Marshall.

"Our committee just felt like we needed a change," Martin said. "This gives people the opportunity to volunteer at their leisure throughout the week."

A kickoff event for the Week of Service, which features the theme of Students Organizing for Service (SOS), is planned from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 20, on the Memorial Student Center plaza on the Huntington campus. T-shirts and snacks will be provided, and people can register for specific activities at that time.

Numerous projects are already planned. Among them are participation in Chili Fest, with proceeds going to the Ronald McDonald House; painting two houses; feeding the homeless; and collecting paper products for the St. George Hospitality House. The paper products will be collected throughout the week, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily in the Memorial Student Center lobby. The hospitality house needs napkins, paper towels, paper cups and non-perishables.

"We encourage everyone in the Marshall community to stop by our kickoff on Monday," Martin said. "We have plenty of service projects planned on campus and throughout the community."

The Volunteer Fair is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 21, in the student center lobby. At that event, visitors can learn about organizations such as Habitat for Humanity, the Huntington City Mission, Cabell County Schools, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Faith in Action, Ebenezer Community Outreach Center, CONTACT of Huntington rape crisis center, Huntington Community Gardens, Junior Achievement, Tri-State Literacy Council, United Way and many more.

For more information, call 304-696-2495 or e-mail or


Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday September 14, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

World renowned biologist Dr. Lynn Margulis to speak at Marshall

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - World renowned biologist Dr. Lynn Margulis will be on Marshall University's Huntington campus Friday, Sept. 24, to deliver a public lecture titled Gaia as Planetary Symbiogenesis? The Rediscovery of Kozo-Polyansky.

Margulis, a distinguished professor in the Department of Geosciences at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, will speak at 7 p.m. in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. The event, presented by Marshall's College of Science and the Drinko Academy, is free to the public.

She is speaking at Marshall to celebrate publication of a new book by Harvard University Press titled Symbiogenesis: A New Principle of Evolution by Boris M. Kozo-Polyansky. The book, originally published in Russian in 1924, was translated from Russian by Dr. Victor Fet, a biology professor at Marshall, and co-edited by Fet and Margulis.

A book signing will follow Margulis' lecture. The book will be available at the Marshall Bookstore.

"Lynn Margulis is one of the most interesting and provocative thinkers of our science," Fet said. "She is credited first of all with the modern concept of symbiotic origin of our cells, first rejected and now widely accepted by the scientific community. Her passionate life's work is devoted to the advancement of many facets of biological science with a great unifying theme: interconnection and interdependence of life on Earth in space and time.

"I have been lucky and honored to work with her for five years on translation and editing of a Russian classic book, Symbiogenesis, by Boris Kozo-Polyansky (1924), published in 2010 by Harvard University Press. I am very glad that Professor Margulis agreed to visit Marshall and Huntington on the occasion of this publication."

Known as one of the most original scientific thinkers of our era, Margulis has authored more than 130 scientific articles and 10 books. The most recent include Dazzle Gradually: Reflections on the Nature of Nature (2007), co-written with Dorion Sagan, and Mind, Life and Universe: Conversations with Great Scientists of Our Time (2007), co-written with Eduardo Punset.

Margulis was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1983. She received the National Medal of Science in 1999 from President Clinton. The Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., announced in 1998 that it will permanently archive her papers. Margulis was president (2005-2006) of Sigma Xi, the scientific research society from which she received the Proctor Prize for scientific achievement in 1999. On her move to the Botany Department at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst in 1988, she had been a biology professor at Boston University for 22 years.

Her publications span a wide range of scientific topics, mainly in cell biology and microbial evolution. Probably best known for development of the theory of symbiogenesis, she challenges acentral tenet of neo-Darwinism: little significant inherited variation comes from random mutations in DNA. New organelles, tissues, organs, and even new species evolve primarily through the fusion of genomes in symbioses followed by natural selection. Symbiogenesis leads to increasingly complex levels of individuality.

Beyond contributions to evolution theory, Margulis is acknowledged for her microbiological work with James E. Lovelock on his Gaia concept. Gaia theory posits that the Earth's surface interactions among living beings in sediment, air, and water have created a vast self-regulating system. 

The address issued on the occasion of her recent award from the Leonardo da Vinci Society for the Study of Thinking (, said: "Dr. Lynn Margulis is known for her revolutionary work in cell evolution. Dr. Margulis has earned her prestige in the field with her theory on the origin of eukaryotic organelles that are her contributions to endosymbiotic theory. She is a leading proponent of Gaia Theory, which states that all life, as well as the oceans, the atmosphere and the surface of the Earth itself are parts of a single, all-encompassing evolving system, illustrating Ian L. McHarg's statement: 'the Earth is indivisible.'"


In the 1920s, a young Russian botanist, Boris Mikhailovich Kozo-Polyansky (1890-1957), synthesized the experimental work of evolutionary biologists across the world in order to theorize that symbiogenesis the merging of separate organisms to form a single organism played a leading role in evolution.  Working from this fundamental idea, Kozo-Polyansky went on to broad-sweeping speculations, collecting examples of symbiogenetic systems from all groups of living organisms, and reconciling his new theory of symbiogenesis with the Darwinian evolutionary ideas of the early 1920s, well before the development of the neo-Darwinist New Synthesis theory that emerged in the 1930s and 1940s. Long forgotten and once ridiculed, the symbiogenesis theory was re-discovered by Margulis in the 1960s, and is now well accepted in all biology textbooks.

For more information, visit:

Direct Link to This Release

Monday September 13, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts,, 304-696-3296

Marshall art faculty to open exhibit Friday

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The Marshall University Art and Design Faculty Exhibition begins Friday, Sept. 17, at Gallery 842 with an opening reception from 6 to 9 p.m.

This exhibition profiles the art being produced by the faculty members of the Department of Art and Design in the College of Fine Arts at Marshall University. Viewers can expect to see a variety of new work, never before publicly exhibited, from all the studio disciplines.

"It is an opportunity for the public to view the art work of the professors who are working to educate and shape the next generation of young art students at Marshall University," John Farley, director of Gallery 842, said. "Additionally, it is a chance for our students to experience the work of their professors in a gallery setting and to participate in the process. Faculty members are responsible for both academic instruction as well as maintaining a productive, exhibiting studio practice. They set the professional example for our students to follow."

New painting professor Ian Hagarty, who joined the Art and Design faculty this summer, agrees. This will be his first exhibition in Huntington.

"It is a valuable opportunity for the communities at Marshall and Huntington to experience the diverse approaches to artistic practice among the faculty," Hagarty said. "I am enthusiastic about the show, because it gives me the opportunity to introduce myself and my work to students and colleagues. As a student, I always looked forward to faculty exhibitions because the work often supported ideas presented by particular professors in class."

For recent graduate Miranda Fields, who earned a Master of Arts with an emphasis in photography, this is an entirely new experience. Fields will be showing work as a faculty member this time.

"The idea of showing work and being referred to as faculty instead of a student is simply surreal," Fields said. "It's an honor to be hanging work alongside the individuals that I credit for so much inspiration throughout my career."

Gallery 842 is both a community- and Marshall University-held space to promote local talent and initiative. The gallery is a free cultural experience for any artist or art enthusiast. Hours are from noon to 6 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays.

Artists participating include Earline Allen, Natalie Gibbs Burdette, Sarah Brinegar, Daniel Cook, Miyuki Cook, Jonathan Cox, John Farley, Miranda Fields, Mary Grassell, Ian Hagarty, Daniel Kaufmann, Jason Kiley, Natalie Larsen, Peter Massing, Brent Patterson and Kristen Zammiello.

For more information, contact Jaye Ike, special projects coordinator for the College of Fine Arts, by phone at 304-696-3296 or by e-mail at

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 10, 2010
Contact: Jamie LoFiego, "Up Late," , 304-696-2967

'Up Late' features music of Demetrius Doss

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Demetrius Doss, a former Thundering Herd wide receiver, joins the cast and crew of "Up Late" this weekend.

Doss, who caught passes from former Marshall University standouts Chad Pennington and Byron Leftwich, is a songwriter and gospel-oriented hip-hop artist. He shares the Chorus of Victoria (Marshall Version), which he co-produced while watching football highlight clips of his 1999-2003 days with the Herd. 

Host Jamie LoFiego also introduces musical guest from Charleston, W.Va., "Whoz Drivin." They play their song, "The Cat's Out of the Bag; It's About to Get Nasty," which becomes the unofficial theme song for the student-produced late-night show when Kyle Hobstetter and friends try to produce their own theme, which fails dismally.

The cast also shows Marshall's nearly 2,000 new students how to survive on campus with "Survival Girl."

This episode of "Up Late" will air on MyZ-TV at 11 p.m. Saturday and on WSAZ at 4:30 a.m. Sunday. The show also can be seen on Comcast Channel 25 throughout the week and on Suddenlink Communications 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

Wednesday September 8, 2010
Contact: Pat Dickson, University Communications, 304-746-1971

After-hours artists to exhibit at Marshall's South Charleston library

SOUTH CHARLESTON, W.Va. - By day Sherry Zachwieja Powell works in her family's mechanical engineering firm while psychologist Frank Grant oversees the renovation of his house in Charleston's east end. But after working hours they're artists who are preparing for showings of their work in a new venue, the Marshall University Library on the South Charleston campus.

The shows are being sponsored by the Marshall Graduate Humanities Program in collaboration with Marshall's South Charleston Library. To introduce the artists a reception, which is open to the public, will take place in the library from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10.

This will be the first time the library has hosted an art show especially designed for its space, although various works of West Virginia artists are displayed throughout the building that the library shares with the Robert C. Byrd Institute for Advanced Flexible Manufacturing.

The concept of the show is to give people who have professions other than art an opportunity to display their work, according to Mark Tobin Moore, a local artist and Graduate Humanities Program instructor, who planned and is mounting the show. Each artist will have a one-person show, which will be on display for six weeks.

"What makes this show different is that I am not looking for people who display their work all the time but rather to give artists an opportunity to share their work," said Moore. "It's sometimes difficult to get your own show but this is a good opportunity; it's a beautiful space with easy access. We also see this as a community outreach, a way for people to come to the campus and see what's here. We're actually looking at these exhibits from a humanities viewpoint, not so much as an art viewpoint."

Grant will be the first to exhibit. Growing up in New York City, he took full advantage of the abundant museums and galleries in the city and surrounding boroughs. As a graduate student pursuing a doctorate in psychology, he turned to art as an outlet for the intensity he felt during his doctoral studies.

His first sale came as a result of a happy accident, he says. Using some leftover oils someone had given him, he painted on a large piece of Masonite. He wasn't pleased with the result and in his haste to wipe it clean for a fresh start he noticed the smears had become an abstract wintery scene. The piece attracted a buyer and after the sale the abstract accident gave him confidence to continue his work. Grant has since exhibited in Syracuse, N.Y., Roanoke, Va., Washington, D.C., Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and in several places in West Virginia.

Grant says he has learned to see beauty in discarded and found things: a lone glove frozen in the snow, neckties from the 1970s, faded photographs and tattered papers, string and yard, fabric remnants, organic peelings, grasses and even unidentified objects.

"All of these have found a place in my mixed media works." Grant says. His art has evolved as a mirror of his philosophy of living, he believes. "In our current 'throw-away' age, nothing should be discarded or seen as trash. Everything has the potential to be reused or recycled."

Zachwieja Powell echoes Grant's penchant for using found and eclectic objects. Her show will include mixed media that will utilize digital, oils, charcoals, pastels and graphite pencils and will feature a favorite medium, collages.

The artist grew up in Putnam County and graduated from Marshall University where she majored in Art Education (K-12). In the summers she incorporated art instruction into her work at Camp Happy Valley through the Salvation Army. Following graduation she also taught at the Huntington Museum of Art.

She studied for six years with Putnam County artist and teacher Caryl Toth and credits her with having been a major influence on her work. Zachwieja Powell was one of the first students to participate in the "Museum in the Community" in Putnam County.

She worked at the Autism Services Center in Huntington for 15 years and made an effort to integrate art into her various duties there. She was gratified with the results. "In every situation people responded to it," she said.

Now working in her family's St. Albans mechanical engineering business, Zdesign Services, she also gives private art instruction. She's exhibited at several venues around the state, including the Clay Center and Charleston's FestivAll, and she continues to incorporate found objects in her artwork.

Acting as the curator for the upcoming shows, Moore currently is teaching classes at Concord University-Beckley and at the Erma C. Byrd Higher Education Center. He donates space in his downtown Charleston studio for the Marshall Graduate Humanities program and is currently offering his services to mount this exhibit.

"I'm doing this because I enjoy it and it gets more visibility for the arts. There's an element of that in the Humanities program." Moore said.

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 8, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Chesapeake Energy Corporation gives $200,000 to MU Foundation

- Chesapeake Energy Corporation today announced a gift of $200,000 to the Marshall University Foundation, Inc., in support of scholarships for Marshall University business and engineering students, and a summer academy for high school students interested in pursuing a career in engineering.

The gift, to be distributed over a five-year period, was announced on the Huntington campus during a news conference at the MU Foundation Hall, Home of the Erickson Alumni Center.

Maribeth Anderson, Director of Corporate Development with Chesapeake Energy, said $15,000 per year will go to scholarships - $7,500 each to students in Marshall's Lewis College of Business and the College of Information Technology and Engineering, and $25,000 per year for the annual Exploring Engineering: Academy of Excellence (EEAE) held on the Huntington campus each summer.

"This latest generous gift from Chesapeake Energy is further evidence of their steadfast support for Marshall University students and high school students considering careers in engineering and business," said MU President Stephen J. Kopp. "We are grateful to Chesapeake Energy for their leadership and commitment to strengthening and expanding college education opportunities for students pursuing careers in these high demand fields."

Anderson stressed the importance of the company's support of Marshall University and higher education in general.

"The partnership with Marshall University is important as we continue to build a workforce prepared for the exploration and production of natural gas in West Virginia and throughout the Marcellus Shale," Anderson said. "Additionally, Chesapeake has a long tradition of philanthropic outreach in the communities in which we operate, and support of higher education is a key component of our culture."

Chesapeake Energy Corporation is the second-largest producer of natural gas and the most active driller of new wells in the U.S.  Headquartered in Oklahoma City, the company's operations are focused on discovering and developing unconventional natural gas and oil fields onshore in the U.S. Chesapeake owns leading positions in the Barnett, Fayetteville, Haynesville, Marcellus and Bossier natural gas shale plays and in the Eagle Ford, Granite Wash and various other unconventional oil plays. The company has also vertically integrated its operations and owns substantial midstream, compression, drilling and oilfield service assets.

For more information, please visit or

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday September 7, 2010
Contact: Jaye Ike, College of Fine Arts,, 304-696-3296

Saxophone seminar to take place Sept. 13

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Dr. Douglas Masek, saxophone player and professor at the University of California Los Angeles, will be on Marshall University's Huntington campus Monday, Sept. 13, to conduct a seminar.

The seminar will take place at the Jomie Jazz Center at 5:30 p.m. No advance registration is required, according to Dr. Ed Bingham, professor of saxophone and director of jazz studies at Marshall, and the event is free and open to the public.

For Bingham, Masek's visit is more than just a learning experience for students of the instrument. Bingham studied under Masek as an undergraduate student at the University of Tennessee. 

"He's a good friend and was one of my first mentors as a saxophonist, and he's just a tremendous person and an astonishing player," Bingham said.

Masek received his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music and his master's degree from Ohio State University. He completed his academic education with a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Southern California.

Masek is also a Vandoren Elite Artist, performing and lecturing internationally at schools, colleges, and universities. He has also performed as soloist at venues such as the Singapore Sun Festival; the American Music Festival in Cluj-Napoca, Romania; the China International Music Festival; the Aspen Music Festival; the Ojai Music Festival, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, and the Idyllwild Arts Academy.

Having premiered dozens of compositions written exclusively for him, Masek's discography includes seven solo collections on CD. Three other CDs, which were produced by Centaur Records, feature compositions of Los Angeles composers.

Bingham said Masek will be able to present information to students in a different way than they may have been taught before and students will be able to exchange other information with Masek as well.

Bingham said he is eager to share this opportunity with his students.

"I try to be an example both professionally and musically to my students, just as Doug has been an example to me," Bingham said. "That's something that I'm excited to share with them, the opportunity to meet him and work with him."

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday September 7, 2010
Contact: Susan Tams, Director of Editorial Services, 304-746-2038

Women's Studies program to offer two speaker series in community service, academic research

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's  Women's Studies program, in conjunction with the Women's Center,  will host Women Connect, a speaker series designed to  create stronger ties between the  Marshall  University's community (including faculty, staff, and students) and the greater Huntington community by featuring local organizations that aid women and girls.

The first organization, Ebenezer Community Outreach, will be featured Wednesday, Sept. 8 from 1 to 2 p.m. in room 2W37 of the Memorial Student Center on the Huntington campus. Ebenezer Community Outreach offers child care, parent education, and community programs to local low-income families.

Other programs in the series, which will continue on the second Wednesday of the month this fall, include:

Wednesday, Oct. 13, 1 to 2 p.m., room 2W37 of the Memorial Student Center, featuring the Golden Girl Group Home. Golden Girl serves dependent, neglected, and predelinquent girls, ages 12-21, who are unable to make successful adjustments in their  natural homes or foster care homes by providing educational, recreational, treatment and support services in a loving and  therapeutic environment.

Wednesday, Nov. 10, from 1 to 2 p.m. in room 2W37 of the Memorial Student Center, featuring Branches Domestic Violence Shelter.  Branches provides safe shelter, counseling, support groups, court advocacy, information,  referrals and transportation for  individuals and families seeking to leave abusive situations.

In addition, the Women's Studies program will sponsor a Women's Studies Colloquium Speaker Series, with support from MU-ADVANCE, this fall. This series will highlight  the academic research Marshall University faculty and students are  conducting on topics relevant to Women's Studies.  The speakers for this fall are: 

Dr. Paige Muellerleile, Psychology Department
"Crimes of sexual violence: Gender and risk perception"
Friday, Oct. 1, from noon to 1p.m.  in room 349, Drinko Library
Description: Television crime dramas have been part of American culture for a long time. Their content often includes sexual violence, which can influence how people think about their risk of victimization, but often in surprising ways.

Dr. Whitney Douglas, English Department
"Somebody Must Listen": Women's Activist Voices
Friday, Nov, 5 from noon to 1 p.m. in room 349 of the Drinko Library
Description:  This talk focuses on the work of women who advocate for sexual assault and domestic violence victims, and the importance they place on sharing their knowledge about the issues they advocate for as well as about the day-to-day work they are engaged in.

Dr. Nalini Santanam, Pharmacology Dept.
Subject to be announced
Friday, Dec. 3, from noon to 1 p.m. in room 349 of the Drinko Library

Dr. Wendy Williams, director of Women's Studies at Marshall, said that all who are interested in the topics are encouraged to attend. For further information, persons may e-mail Williams at

Direct Link to This Release

Tuesday September 7, 2010
Contact: Lalena Price, Communications Coordinator, 304-746-1989

Three southern West Virginia students earn Friends of Coal scholarships

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Three Marshall University freshmen from southern West Virginia have been awarded the Friends of Coal scholarships for 2010.

The recipients are 2010 graduates Teseka Jowett, Destinee Vance, and Bethany Thomas. Jowett is a graduate of Scott High School in Boone County. Vance is a graduate of Chapmanville High School in Lincoln County.  Thomas is a graduate of Richwood High School in Nicholas County.

Each student will receive a $2,500 scholarship, which is the result of the sponsorship provided by the Friends of Coal for the Marshall University-West Virginia University football series. Marshall plays WVU at 7 p.m. Friday at Joan C. Edwards Stadium in Huntington in the fifth game of the cross-state rival matchup.

Students eligible to receive the scholarship must have high GPAs in high school, live in southern West Virginia and demonstrate financial need.

Bill Raney, president of the West Virginia Coal Association, said his association understands the impact these scholarships have on deserving students.

"As in the past four years, these scholarships are what the Friends of Coal Bowl is all about, assisting deserving students who are going to carry forward the strength, integrity and perseverance of the great people who make the West Virginia coal industry such a great part of America's independence," Raney said. "The achievements of these students will prove the future of our state and our country will be in good hands. Congratulations to each of them from Friends of Coal everywhere. You make us all proud."

Steve Hensley, dean of student affairs at Marshall University, said that regardless of which team wins the Friends of Coal Bowl, these students are true beneficiaries of the matchup.

"The Friends of Coal football game between Marshall and WVU brings our entire state together, and many West Virginians have a favorite on one side or the other.  However, all West Virginians can agree to celebrate the scholarship support that the contest on the football field brings to these students at Marshall and WVU," Hensley said.

Direct Link to This Release

Sunday September 5, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Numerous activities planned in conjunction with Friends of Coal Bowl

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - The talk surrounding the Friends of Coal Bowl this week will mostly be about the football game between Marshall University and West Virginia University to be played at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10 at Joan C. Edwards Stadium.

But, there is a lot more to talk about than football when discussing the Friends of Coal Bowl. Activities planned in conjunction with the game run throughout the week.

Among the highlights are HerdFest, a street fair/free concert Thursday, Sept. 9 in downtown Huntington, and a Marshall Artists Series performance Sunday, Sept. 12 by Liza Minnelli at the Keith-Albee Performing Arts Center. A Friends of Coal Bowl Brunch also is planned for Friday.

HerdFest features country, southern rock, and bluegrass fusion band, the Davisson Brothers Band, and multi-platinum-selling national recording artists, Little Texas. The event will begin at 5 p.m. with the street fair on 3rd Avenue in front of Pullman Square. The Davisson Brothers perform at 6:30 p.m., with Little Texas taking the stage at about 8:30 p.m.

Dignitaries, including Gov. Joe Manchin and First Lady Gayle Manchin, as well as Marshall University coaches and officials, have been invited to speak to the crowd between musical performances. Marshall's cheerleaders will be on hand and Marco will make a special appearance.

"It's going to be a great, fun time for everybody," Patrick Murphy, Marshall's student body president, said of the concert. "We're excited about showing the community how much we care, and we look forward to everyone coming out and supporting us at HerdFest. We also look forward to showing our friends from WVU that we can put on a great event. It's going to be a really good show, a fun time."

HerdFest is sponsored by Frontier Communications, in conjunction with Cabell Huntington Hospital, Chesapeake Energy, Community Trust Bank, the Cabell Huntington Convention and Visitors Bureau, WOWK Channel 13, Marshall University Student Activities Programming Board and 93.7 The DAWG. WOWK will televise the event live from 6 to 8 p.m.

The weekend of special activities concludes on Sunday, Sept. 12 with St. Mary's Medical Center and HIMG presenting Minnelli at the Keith-Albee. A Tony, Oscar, Grammy and Emmy Award winner, Minnelli will take the stage at 7 p.m. Her performance also is sponsored by Verizon, Ransbottom Law Office, WKEE, WTCR, B-97, WSAZ, The Herald-Dispatch, Marshall University, and MU's College of Fine Arts.

Tickets are $85.25, $65 and $45, and may be purchased at the Marshall Artists Series box office in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center, or by calling 304-696-6656.

Someone will win a prize package of two tickets to the football game, two tickets to Minnelli's concert and a $100 gift certificate to the illustrious 21 at The Frederick. To register to win the prize package, visit and click on the "Click to Win" tab.

Here is a brief look at a couple of other events scheduled in conjunction with the Marshall-WVU game:

NCAA Football 2011

Marshall students will have a chance to win tickets to the MU-WVU game by competing in NCAA Football 2011 on the Memorial Student Center plaza. Competition is scheduled from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Sept. 8-9. Twenty tickets will be available for the winners. For more information, contact the Student Activities Programming Board at 304-696-6770.   

Friends of Coal Bowl Brunch

This event is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10 at the Marshall University Foundation Hall, Home of the Erickson Alumni Center, and is open to fans of both teams. Former Marshall Coach Bobby Pruett and former WVU Coach Don Nehlen will be featured speakers, along with athletic directors from both universities - Marshall's Mike Hamrick and WVU's Oliver Luck.  Cost is $25. Call the alumni office at 304-696-2901 for tickets and/or more information.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 3, 2010
Contact: Nicholas Blankenship, MU Vets4Vets president, , 304-377-4635

MU Vets4Vets contributes a $1,600 donation to Wounded Warriors Project

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's Veterans for Veterans (MU Vets4Vets) student organization recently traveled to Columbus, Ohio, where its members participated in a benefit clay shoot competition and made a $1,600 donation to the Wounded Warriors Project (WWP), according to Nicholas Blankenship, president of the student organization.

"This may have been our first time participating, but it definitely will not be our last," Nicholas Blankenship said. "This event gives us the opportunity to show our gratitude to wounded veterans from Huntington and all over the country for their individual sacrifice."

The Wounded Warriors Project is a national organization that provides programs and services to severely injured service members during the time between active duty and transition to civilian life. The weekend benefit in Columbus is the third such fundraiser hosted by Central Ohio American Charities (COAC), an organization founded by United States Marine and Marshall University alumnus Steve Blankenship. It is the first time MU Vets4Vets has participated, an action prompted by Steve Blankenship.

"These wounded servicemen and women had sacrificed and endured while asking little in return," Steve Blankenship said. "They did their duty in a cause which many did not support. They persevered without question, while providing us with the freedom which many take for granted. These were truly honorable men and women. They are our country's future. It is easy to act so passionately about these individuals because they are so humble; satisfied with a simple handshake and a thank you."

During the past three years, more than $100,000 has been raised as a result of COAC's event, including the $1,600 contributed by the five Marshall students who attended. They also participated in the clay shoot competition, with team captain and vice president of MU Vets4Vets, Andrew Wendt, bringing home the runner-up trophy for hitting 87 of 100 clays.

"It was really rewarding being involved in an event like the one put on by COAC," Wendt said. "Getting a group of veterans and veteran supporters together in order to raise money for an organization like the WWP is truly rewarding. I am proud to have participated in it and looking forward to doing it again next year."

Dan Nevins, a double amputee who served in the Army, was the event's keynote speaker. He shared the story of how he and two other veterans climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro "with only one leg among the three of them."

MU Vets4Vets is one of the newest student organizations on the Huntington campus. At a few weeks shy of its year-old mark, it is 87 members strong. The group's goal is to provide a supportive atmosphere on campus that will help ease the transition for veterans from the military way of life to student life. For more information, go to

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 3, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall to test MU Alert emergency messaging system

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University communications officials will conduct a test of the MU Alert emergency messaging system at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 8.

Marshall community members who are subscribed to MU Alert are asked to be sure that they have received the message that morning. If a message has not been received by noon, a subscriber should review and update his or her contact information in the myMU/MU Alert web interface. If this contact information was already correct, but a message was still not received, then please send an e-mail to with details on which contact method (text, email, voice)  did not work as expected.

"This test is part of our plan to test the system at least once per semester," said Jim Terry, director of public safety for the university. "As always, our primary concern is protecting the safety and health of university community members."

The MU Alert system, which is operated through third-party vendor Everbridge, allows Marshall students, faculty and staff to provide several methods for the university to use when making emergency contacts. Most common are text messages, cell phone calls, and e-mail. Those who would like to subscribe or update their information for this test are asked to visit the MyMU page at, log in, click on the MU Alert red triangle and complete their subscription or update by 5 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 7.

Everbridge  is a leading provider of emergency notification services to colleges and universities, health care systems, government agencies and municipalities.

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 3, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

On-campus parking to be altered for Marshall-WVU game

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Beginning the evening of Thursday, Sept. 9, Marshall University will alter normal parking procedures in and around the Huntington campus because of the Thundering Herd's home football game with West Virginia University on Friday, Sept. 10. Game time is 7 p.m.

James E. Terry, MU's director of public safety, said the changes begin at 9 p.m. Thursday when all athletic permit lots will be closed. These include the Joan C. Edwards Stadium west lot, Annex 1, Annex 2, C lot and the Softball lot. Any automobile still on those lots at 10 a.m. Friday will be towed at the owner's expense, Terry said.

Employees and students who normally park in the athletic permit lots will be asked to park Friday in the garage on 3rd Avenue across from Cam Henderson Center or on surface lots on 6th Avenue. Beginning at 8 a.m. Friday, parking officers will staff those lots to control access to Marshall employees and student permit holders only.

Beginning at noon, all lots on campus - excluding the athletic permit lots and the pay-per-space lot east of Corbly Hall - will be open to the public for the game-day parking rate of $5 per space. The lot near Corbly will be closed for a university function.

Terry said that although tailgating may begin at noon, no alcohol is to be consumed on university owned or controlled property until 3 p.m. At that time, alcohol consumption is allowed only in tailgate-designated areas. No alcohol consumption is permitted within the main campus at any time.

"We appreciate the patience and cooperation of our students and employees," Terry said. "We understand that these changes, even if only for one day, might be inconvenient, but they are necessary to accommodate the thousands of visitors we will have on campus on September 10th. It is vital that everyone follow these directions."

Direct Link to This Release

Friday September 3, 2010
Contact: Jamie LoFiego, "Up Late," , 304-696-2967

Marshall's student-produced late show kicks off brand new season of college-age hijinks

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - WSAZ newswoman Jessica Ralston brings her dogs to the set of the fall semester's debut of "Up Late," Marshall University's student-produced late-night show.

Host Jamie LoFiego, though fearful of the dogs, manages to pull himself together long enough to talk to Ralston about her last visit to the MU program and her video game addiction to "Cabela's Big Game Hunter" for Wii.

Also this week, LoFeigo welcomes what he calls "hands down, one of the best musical acts we've ever had on the show" - Jeff Ellis featuring Bud Carroll and the Southern Souls.

LoFiego and his college-aged cast is up to its usual style of humor as they introduce the season's new co-host, Kyle Hobstetter of Portsmouth, Ohio, check in with Cat Rayson, a foreign exchange student from Great Britain who doesn't appear to want to ever leave Huntington, and hear from Patrick Webb, who will be checking in from his study abroad program in Australia this season. Jessi Sission, a senior from Ripley, W.Va., ventures out of the studio to see what kind of action Marshall students got into over the summer.

This episode of "Up Late" will air on MyZ-TV at 11 p.m. Saturday and on WSAZ at 4:30 a.m. Sunday. The show also can be seen on Comcast Channel 25 throughout the week and on Suddenlink Communications 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

Thursday September 2, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Constitution Week celebration continues

- Marshall University will celebrate Constitution Week 2010 Sept. 13-23 with a series of events on its Huntington campus.

Highlighting the events will be "A Tribute to John Marshall" at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 15 in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. It will be hosted by the Office of Marshall President Stephen J. Kopp and is free to the public.

"President Kopp has long encouraged the development of a better understanding of our namesake, John Marshall," said Dr. Alan B. Gould, Executive Director of Marshall's John Deaver Drinko Academy. "We hope everyone will join President Kopp as he pays tribute to the Great Chief Justice."

Other events planned during Constitution Week include the annual quoits tournament Wednesday-Thursday, Sept. 15-16, a celebration of John Marshall's birthday Sept. 16, announcement of the winner of the Judge Dan O'Hanlon Constitution Week and John Marshall Celebration Essay Competition Friday, Sept. 17, a panel discussion on "Politics, Political Parties and the Media in the 21st Century" Tuesday, Sept. 21 and the Robert C. Byrd Forum on Civic Responsibility Thursday, Sept. 23.

"This is the sixth year of our celebration of Constitution Week here at Marshall," Gould said. "It seems like every year it gets a little better. This year's events are varied, interesting and educational. It is our hope and expectation that everyone in the Marshall community will come and join in some or all of the events planned for this year's celebration."

"A Tribute to John Marshall" consists of music provided by John Marshall's Own Harmonie Musicale, an ensemble of Marshall music professors performing songs and music of John Marshall's era played on historically authentic instruments. It also includes a narrative titled "Meet John Marshall," given by the Honorable John Laidley, founder of Marshall Academy - and perhaps better known today as Marshall President Stephen J. Kopp.

Teams are forming now to play in the annual quoits tournament that begins with registration and practice Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 13-14. Greek and open tournaments are Wednesday, Sept. 15, and the tournament concludes Thursday, Sept. 16 with the President's Media Challenge. Quoits is an ancient and little-known sport related to horseshoe pitching that dates back to the early days of Olympic discus throwers. Gould said quoits was John Marshall's favorite game.

Teams of Marshall University faculty, staff, students, fraternities and sororities may participate, and the deadline for team registration is 5 p.m. Sept. 13. To register now, teams may call Renee Denney at 304-696-2300, or e-mail her at Registration also will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 13 on the west end of Buskirk Field.

The President's Media Challenge at 11:30 a.m. Sept. 16 features Kopp and members of the media playing quoits on the west end of Buskirk Field. That event will be preceded at 11 a.m. by the cutting of the John Marshall Birthday Cake on the Memorial Student Center plaza.

The Judge Dan O'Hanlon Constitution Week and John Marshall Celebration Essay Competition winner will be announced during a ceremony that begins at 5 p.m. Sept. 17 in the Memorial Student Center's John Marshall Room.

The panel discussion will take place at 11 a.m. Sept. 21 in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. Panelists include:

  • Al May, a professor in the School of Media and Public Affairs at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

  • Bruce Hardy, a senior research analyst at the Annenberg Center for Public Policy at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He has coauthored books on the new media and Obama's presidential victory

  • Dr. Robert Rupp, a professor of political science at West Virginia Wesleyan in Buckhannon, W.Va. He is often used as an analyst for coverage of the Legislature and public events for West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Monitoring the discussion will be Beth Vorhees, host of West Virginia Today on West Virginia Public Broadcasting.

"They are going to talk about the changing nature of politics, the new politics of the 21st century," said Dr. Corley Dennison, dean of Marshall's W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications. "I think it's going to be a great panel."

The Robert C. Byrd Forum on Civic Responsibility is scheduled for 12:30 p.m. Sept. 23 in the Francis-Booth Experimental Theatre, located in the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center. Dr. Simon Perry, emeritus professor of political science, will speak on the topic: "The Constitutional Convention of 1787."

For more information on Constitution Week, contact Denney at 304-696-2300.

Direct Link to This Release

Thursday September 2, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Marshall's School of Journalism and Mass Communications to host golf scramble fundraiser at Twin Silos

'J-School Golf Scramble' Sept. 23 will raise money for school's equipment needs

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Marshall University's W. Page Pitt School of Journalism and Mass Communications (SOJMC) will host a golf scramble at the Twin Silos Golf Course in Lavalette on Thursday, Sept. 23.

The purpose of the event is to raise money for equipment needs for the school's classrooms and teaching labs. It begins at 1 p.m., with late registration starting at noon. The scramble will conclude with a cookout and the announcement of winners and prizes.

 "The School of Journalism and Mass Communications is a very hands-on program and we try to maintain the most current equipment in our teaching environments," said Dr. Corley Dennison, SOJMC dean. "With recent budget cuts, we are left to raise much of the money for new equipment."

The schoolʼs student advertising/public relations agency, Out Loud, is organizing the event. Out Loud representatives are seeking players and sponsors to participate.

"Our group is working diligently to find participants," said Tess Moore, an Out Loud member. "We need to find more sponsors and golfers to help make the event a success."

For more information on the J-School Golf Scramble contact Sandy Savage-York, Out Loud adviser, at 304-696-2273 or

Direct Link to This Release

Wednesday September 1, 2010
Contact: Dave Wellman, Director of Communications, (304) 696-7153

Thunder in the Shoe II tailgate party sold out

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. - Thunder in the Shoe II, a tailgate party sponsored by Marshall University alumni and supporters Jim and Verna K. Gibson before the Thundering Herd's football game Thursday at Ohio State University, is sold out.

The event, also sponsored by Nationwide Insurance, will be at the Drake Performance and Event Center at 1849 Cannon Dr., located about 500 yards from the stadium. The game kicks off at 7:30 p.m. The tailgate party runs from 4 to 10 p.m.

Advance tickets to the tailgate are gone and no tickets will be sold at the door.

"We want to thank everyone for their enthusiasm and support of the Thundering Herd and this wonderful tailgate event," said Tish Littlehales, Marshall's director of alumni relations. "We are really looking forward to a fun tailgate party as our fans get fired up for the game. The fact that we are sold out shows just how excited Herd fans are for this game and the season."

Direct Link to This Release