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May 2009

Indiana University of Pennsylvania President Tony Atwater received the highest civilian service award given by the United States Army at IUP’s ROTC spring dining out event. Retired Maj. Gen. Rodney Ruddock and IUP professor of Military Science Lt. Col. Sidney Zemp presented the Commander’s Award for Public Service to Atwater at the event on April 24. The award is in recognition of Atwater’s ‘outstanding dedication to the United States Armed Forces and generous support of the IUP Warrior Battalion since his arrival in 2005 through the present,’ Zemp said.

— @aascu 

SOUTH BUFFALO - While the other kids are paddling canoes and toasting marshmallows around a campfire this summer, some future scientists and engineers could be listening by videoconferencing to personnel at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., talking about optical imaging. They also might be making their own holograms or building robots. Those technology-minded campers will have their adventures during electro-optics summer camp at Indiana University of Pennsylvania Northpointe Campus, where they will be learning about things such as wave optics, electronics, fiber optics, holography, infrared imaging, lasers and nanotechnology. Eddie Schindler, a freshman student in IUP Northpointe’s electro-optics program, got to build an infrared remote and sensor device at last summer’s camp.

—“Science-Oriented Students Headed to Electro-Optics Camp,”
Kittanning Leader-Times, May 27, 2009

Indiana University of Pennsylvania has been accepted into the Yellow Ribbon GI Education Enhancement Program, school officials announced. Under the program, colleges and universities fund veterans tuition expenses that exceed the highest public in-state undergraduate tuition rate. ‘This program positions IUP in a national registry of Yellow Ribbon universities, further reflecting IUP’s commitment as a veteran-friendly campus,’ William Srsic, a counselor in IUP’s Veterans Affairs office, said. ‘Our office is dedicated to serving student veterans and dependents of veterans, and including academic support, tutoring, housing assistance, financial aid and general information.’ More information, including eligibility criteria, is available from the Yellow Ribbon Program page of the VA’s Web site at www.gibill.va.gov/School_Info/yellow_ribbon.

—“IUP Joins Program that Helps Fund Vets’ Tuition,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, May 31, 2009

STIRLING golfer Gavin Smith is thinking about turning pro after his latest success on the USA college circuit. The 25-year-old son of Roy and Lynne Smith is in his third year at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). The Kings Park member has featured before in IUP team triumphs but, last Friday, he rolled in a 20-foot birdie putt at the first playoff hole to give his university its first-ever NCAA individual national champion.

—“Smith to the Fore in USA,”
Stirling Observer (Scotland), May 27, 2009

While the other kids are paddling canoes and toasting marshmallows around a campfire this summer, some future scientists and engineers could be listening by videoconferencing to personnel at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., talking about optical imaging. They also might be making their own holograms or building robots. Those technology-minded campers will have their adventures during electro-optics summer camp at Indiana University of Pennsylvania Northpointe Campus, where they will be learning about things such as wave optics, electronics, fiber optics, holography, infrared imaging, lasers and nanotechnology. Eddie Schindler, a freshman student in IUP Northpointe’s electro-optics program, got to build an infrared remote and sensor device at last summer’s camp. ‘You point it at the sensor and whenever you push the button, the lights come on,’ said Schindler. ‘I still have it. It still works.’ Schindler didn’t know anything about electro-optics before coming to the camp. He said the camp inspired him to go into that field. His plans are to attend IUP Northpointe for two years and finish with a bachelors degree at IUP’s main campus in Indiana.

—“Science-Oriented Students Headed to Electro-Optics Camp,”
Kittanning Leader-Times, May 27, 2009

Two area residents have completed requirements for doctoral degrees at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Laureen Ezrow Nelson, now of Newville and formerly of Coopersburg, completed the requirements for a Doctor of Education degree in curriculum and instruction. Nelson is the daughter of Dale and June Ezrow, of Coopersburg. She and her husband, David, are the parents of three grown children. She is a member of the teacher education faculty at Shippensburg University. She was selected for the 20th annual IUP Foundation Doctoral Fellowship Award. Her dissertation was titled ‘An Observational Study of Social Skills Learning Within Third, Fourth and Fifth Grade.’ Jill E. Wagner, of South Lehigh Avenue, Wind Gap, completed the requirements for a Doctor of Philosophy degree in English. She is the daughter of Gerald and Rachel Wagner, of Prompton. She received a bachelor’s degree from Moravian College and a master’s degree from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. While at IUP, she received a presidential fellowship, a graduate assistantship and was selected to attend the 2008 Pennsylvania Governor’s Conference for Women. She also completed a Center for Teaching Excellence Reflective Practice Project. She was a member of the English Book Club, Graduate Student Association, English Graduate Organization, Cross Seekers and the College English Association. His dissertation was titled ‘Engendered Edens: Postmodern Landscapes in Novels by John Fowles and Julian Barnes.’

—“Local Students Complete Doctoral Degrees at IUP,”
Allentown Morning Call, May 21, 2009

Cathleen Wierzbowski, of Erie, was honored for research excellence at Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s annual Graduate Research Appreciation Week. Wierzbowski is a graduate of the IUP Department of Professional Studies in Education. She was honored for her research on the increased need for family caregivers and a partnership between them and health care professionals as the number of geriatric Americans rises.

—“College Clan,”
Erie Times News, May 11, 2009

The musical ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ has transformed Christopher McAllister of Indiana from a high-school junior playing a role into a 23-year-old director who has control of all the parts. McAllister is musical director of Greater Johnstown High School’s production of ‘Jekyll and Hyde,’ which will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday at the school’s auditorium.He graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 2008 with a degree in music education, concentrating on the French horn with a minor in organ performance.

The Right Direction: Teacher Guides Students Through Musical Productions.
Johnstown Tribune-Democrat, May 8, 2009

Each time a Pennsylvania resident turns on a light switch, an electric current is streamed from a fossil fuel-burning power plant, which pours carbon and other pollutants into the atmosphere. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Pennsylvania is responsible for 1 percent of the world’s total global warming pollution. Students from nearly 400 universities and colleges across the state have the opportunity to change this trend through the PowerMinders organization. Bob Fiori, a member of the PowerMinders Advisory Board, said PowerMinders has students participating from Temple, Drexel, University of Pennsylvania, Cabrini, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, West Chester State University and Penn State. College students in the PowerMinders program are known as ambassadors. The students identify where energy can be saved in the homes of their family and friends through free energy assessments. The PowerMinders Web site points out that college students who join PowerMinders are offered exposure to energy-related companies, public relations and press in their home communities, and important resume-building skills such as sales, teamwork and self-motivation.

—“College Students Join Together to Reduce Pollution,”
The Triangle (Drexel University), Philadelphia, Pa., May 8, 2009

Indiana University of Pennsylvania President Dr. Tony Atwater said beyond the financial crisis gripping the country, there is another crisis that will affect generations to come if it’s not fixed now. ‘It is a crisis of our college students and our potential students in terms of access, affordability and indebtedness of higher education,’ Atwater said. Atwater was one of 11 people to testify on the proposed Tuition Relief Act before the state House Gaming Oversight Committee during a public hearing Thursday at Westmoreland County Community College near Youngwood.

—“IUP President Commends Bill Applying Gambling Revenue to Tuition Relief,”
Greensburg Tribune-Review, May 8, 2009

The presidents of Indiana University of Pennsylvania and Beaver County Community College testified about the positive impact the program would have, especially for low- to moderate-income students. Kathleen Shaw, state deputy secretary of postsecondary and higher education, touted the benefit of giving Pennsylvania a better-educated workforce without piling debt onto families.

—“Video Poker Merits Debated at Hearing,”
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, May 8, 2009

YOUNGWOOD, Pa. — On Thursday, a public hearing was held at Westmoreland County Community College as the debate regarding Gov. Ed Rendell’s plan to legalize video poker machines and use the tax revenue generated to fund college education revved up. It was the second of four hearings that will be held across the states by representatives gathering input on the issue. Indiana University of Pennsylvania President Dr. Tony Atwater welcomed the possible relief from gaming revenue, citing how some students are racking up debt and can no longer afford to go to class. ‘It is a crisis that deserves a solution and a solution now,’ said Atwater.

WTAE-TV (Pittsburgh, Pa.), May 7, 2009

A public hearing on legalizing video poker machines to provide college students with tuition relief will be Thursday at Westmoreland County Community College. Scheduled to testify are representatives from the state departments of Revenue and Education, the Pennsylvania State Police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement, the Pennsylvania Tavern Association, the Pennsylvania Amusement and Music Machine Association as well as Dr. Joe D. Forrester, president of Community College of Beaver County, and Dr. Tony Atwater, president of Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

—“Hearing at WCCC Sill Focus on Legalizing Video Poker,”
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, May 6, 2009

Lila Shaara is all about possibilities. With her Ph.D. in cultural anthropology, Shaara lectures on the possibilities inherent in the human animal to her students at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and the University of Pittsburgh. But in her private life, the one-time guitarist for the Mutettes, the first all-female punk band in North Carolina, might as easily lay out a Tarot reading and speak just as eloquently about the probabilities in your future. You might say she has lived her life between two potentialities, the academic and the alchemic. She brings them together in her mind-expanding second novel, ‘The Fortune Teller’s Daughter’ (Ballantine, $25), the follow-up to her equally ambitious 2006 debut, ‘Every Secret Thing.’ 

—“Tropicalia Books: Florida Author Lila Shaara Blends Conflicting Disciplines in Her Work,”
News-Press (Fort Myers, Fla.), May 3, 2009

Tiffany Messner, Birdsboro, has been inducted into the Mortar Board National College Senior Honor Society at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. The Mortar Board initiates college juniors who demonstrate excellence in scholarship, student leadership and community service. Messner is a 2006 graduate of Daniel Boone High School.

—“Campus Notes,”
Lancaster Reading Eagle, May 3, 2009

INDIANA, Pa. — Colleges getting ready for graduation ceremonies are doing what they can to prevent students and guests from spreading or catching swine flu. Officials at Indiana University of Pennsylvania snapped into action on campus, posting signs that say ‘Cover Your Cough and Clean Your Hands Often.’ But the university has also gone to great lengths to prepare in the event swine flue does hit here. ‘As soon as we get notification that it’s a possible pandemic or there’s a health concern issue, we immediately go into action,’ said one university official. ‘We have a very extensive planning documentIn addition to e-mailing all of its 14,300 students, IUP has added substantial guides and information on its Web site, using links and frequently asked questions for students, parents and faculty.’ IUP officials said the school’s efforts are coordinated with Indiana County Emergency Management and the Indiana Regional Medical Center, which reports zero cases of swine flu. For students like David Stocker, the swine flue scare is much ado about nothing. ‘I don’t feel its that big a deal,’ said Stocker. ‘I feel that it’s more just like the flu, you know. Not too many people have died from it. There’s not that many cases more people die from the flu everyday than the swine flu.’ Commencement is Sunday for some 1,600 graduates. It is scheduled outside and will only move inside if it rains. Slippery Rock University will hold a separate graduation Saturday for 22 students. Officials fear they were exposed to swine flu during a school trip to Mexico.

WPXI-TV (Pittsburgh, Pa.), May 1, 2009